"Daria": Why MTV's Animated Game-Changer Still Matters [WEEKEND REWATCH]

There's a good chance that if you were old enough to remember watching MTV in the 1990's, you remember Daria. And there's an even better chance you've seen the show – if you were ever an edgy, apathetic teen.

And if you're not familiar, it's on Hulu, so go educate yourself in some premium grade 90s sarcasm.

So, you may be thinking, "Eden, why are you writing about a show that went off the air before 9/11? It was great, but now it's gone." Just bear with me.

Daria has aged like a fine wine – a sassy, sardonic, sarcastic bottle of Merlot – one that I recently rediscovered.

MTV Studios

Now, even though the 90's have made a comeback in the form of mini skirts, crop sweaters, and impeached presidents embroiled in scandal, that doesn't mean all things should be making a comeback.

Enter Daria: it's timeless – not a fad to come back in 20 years, like butterfly clips or pucca shell necklaces – hell, even frosted tips. And that's what makes it great: it speaks to the shared experience of growing up and sheds light on the basic emotions of the human condition.

Daria's sister Quinn is shallow and popular and obsessed with shoes. Fun "Eden Fact": my family went on a cruise once, and we each were allowed two bags. My sister filled both of her bags with clothes and took one of my bags for her shoes. Total weight of just her shoes? 27 pounds. We were gone for less than a week.

MTV Studios

My family life aside, I relate hard to this show – and I always have. But rewatching it now as a mostly fully-formed adult puts things in a different context, yet somehow makes it hit even harder.

Even though it's set in high school and mostly centers around family, school, and the apathy that both of those spawn, the feelings behind all the episodes are rooted deeply in feelings everybody knows and faces all throughout life – and that's what makes it timeless, despite the 90s fashion.

Daria tackles issues like grief, self-perception, motivations, regret, and of course, growing up. Now, before you call me out on that last one, I'd like to state that I believe we are never done growing up – not entirely.

MTV Studios

And the show addresses that in the form of her parents, who usually try to do the best thing for their girls – but sometimes they realize that they woke up one day and forgot who they were in their youth and what they really loved.

Stereotypical parents, maybe – but the Morgendorffers' capture all the feelings of middle-class suburban life. It does what art was created for: lends a view into all the different perspectives of the people within your everyday life, so that we can better understand and grasp the situations and people around us.

And in case that isn't enough to sell you on a watch (or rewatch) of the series, just listen to the theme song – which sums up the attitude of the series pretty nicely:

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About Eden Arnold

Having spent far too much time in front of the television growing up, Eden has lots of opinions about television (as well as movies and everything else). She puts this to good use along with her journalism degree and writing experience with by-lines over the years in many print publications, books, and online media outlets. You can find her on Twitter at @Edenhasopinions
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