Daria

Common Sense Media says

Biting social commentary has mature themes.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Peer influence and antisocial behavior are central to the show. While diversity is accepted, stereotypes are used to bring attention to social issues. Many negative roles with negative consequences.

Violence

Very limited acts of violence are visible. But there are many references to potential school violence and extreme security measures.

Sex

Making out, but no simulated sex. Often contains light sexual humor, including the propositioning of teen girls by teen boys.

Language

Mild to moderate: "damn", "hell", "ass," "pissed," etc.

Consumerism

Popular and alternative music is used throughout the show. Few specific references to popular culture icons and musical groups and no discussions of brand-specific clothes, food, or beverages.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are used in some episodes. Any discussion about this use does not look at the consequences of such behavior, especially among teenagers.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while this animated series provides some important social commentary about teen life, if viewers aren't mature enough to see through its extreme satire, the significance of these messages is easily lost or misinterpreted. Also, while Daria's parents clearly love her, there's almost a complete lack of strong positive adult role models or constructive examples of adult-teen communication. Controversial subjects, such as sexual relationships and drug use, are mocked, and the consequences of these actions aren't fully discussed. Exercise caution.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Television viewers were originally introduced to Daria Morgendorffer (voiced by Tracy Grandstaff) when she appeared as an occasional character on MTV's animated series Beavis and Butt-Head. In 1997 the animated sitcom DARIA -- created by Glenn Eichler -- debuted, showcasing Daria's intelligent-but-antisocial personality as she offers her dark point of view about the trials and tribulations of life in the suburb of Lawndale. Living with her loving-but-dysfunctional parents Jake (Julian Rebolledo) and Helen (Wendy Hoopes), and fashion-conscious younger sister Quinn (Hoopes), Daria spends her days trying to alienate herself from mainstream society. She shares most of her observations with best friend Jane Lane (Hoopes), who usually sympathizes with Daria, despite her own more-positive outlook on life. Together Daria and Jane attend Lawndale High, where they must co-exist with the likes of "dumb jock" star quarterback Kevin Thompson (Marc Thompson), brainless blonde cheerleader Brittany Taylor (Janie Mertz), and Charles "Upchuck" Ruttheimer III (Thompson), whose mission in life is to have sex with any girl who falls for his cheesy and inappropriate propositions.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Daria provides some biting social commentary on many aspects of teen culture -- and on American suburban life in general. This is accomplished by exaggerating and often stereotyping recurring characters' personalities to the point of ridiculousness. Most of the teachers and staff at Lawndale have personality disorders so severe that they (hopefully) couldn't work in a real-life high school. And most of the show's teenagers represent what's most problematic in teen society -- including image consciousness, lack of academic interest, and consumerism. It's all meant to be funny, of course, but .....

And unfortunately, while Daria is particularly critical of her generation's willingness to conform to these mediocre standards, she's never motivated enough to do anything to change it. Instead she spends her time thinking cynically about the world she lives in -- which doesn't exactly make her the best role model for teen viewers.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what things in their community bother them and the pros and cons of choosing to work to change those things. They can also talk about their adult role models at home and at school. Which teachers mean the most to them and why? Which of their characteristics do teens most admire? The show's use of negative stereotypes and inappropriate behavior are also topics that families may want to discuss.

TV details

Cast:Julian Rebolledo, Tracy Grandstaff, Wendy Hoopes
Network:TeenNick
Genre:Comedy
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Daria was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 16 years old Written byanonmouse November 12, 2010
AGE
12
QUALITY
 
I am honestly very disappointed with the "common sense" review. Here's my opinion: Daria is a great show that encourages teens to think for themselves. It suggests that clothes, shopping and boys may in fact NOT be the most important things in life and stresses the importance of political awareness, academics and individuality. As a high school student I think that the characters are not in fact over-stereotyped and that (at least in comparison to my high school) does not exaggerate the dynamics of a 9-12 grade experience. Yes, of course the teachers at my school are not very comparable to those in Daria's world but honestly, the students are very much like Quinn and Brittany. Considering other shows that 12 year olds watch, (reality TV and such) Daria offers a different outlook on high school life that emphasizes diversity in the social spectrum. I highly recommend any teenager to watch this show, not only for it's entertainment value but for it's message. Be different, you don't have to act like your peers to get through the hellish 4 years of high school.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written byetoile April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 
Parent of a 5 year old Written byCranberries June 23, 2010
AGE
14
QUALITY
 
Daria was a wonderful show.Daria is the girl every high school has, she was brilliant, cynical, sarcastic, and wasn't afraid to say what was on her mind. She was anti-social, but that didn't mean she was a dangerous person or anything. She just didn't want to be around people who just didn't get it....basically everyone. The characters are stereotypical. Such as the ditsy cheerleader Brittany and her dim-witted football star boyfriend Kevin. the show satirizes a lot of high school and suburban life. Daria's mom is work-a-holic who does try to bond with her daughter, but just can't help stay on top of everything. The principal of the high school is a corrupt and paranoid woman who often goes overboard with school security when there's obviously no need for it. The popular kids of the high school are shown as "stupid" "arrogant" "selfish" and "almost unteachable". But as there is a chance for a character to show some sort of intelligence and integrity, like Daria's sister Quinn, the 'cute' one of the fashion club, shows humanity and that she does in fact have a brain, but has to hide herself from her friends and admirers because shes afraid of being called "smart" and therefore not popular and attractive. Though she does learn later in the series that really is not the case. Daria taught lessons about not caring about certain aspects of conformity, among other things. Some might say that the characters are over the top and overblown. But for people like Daria, that is how they are.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential Apps Guide