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Western Animation / Daria: Is It Fall Yet?

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The cynic gets her breakthrough role.
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Is It Fall Yet? is Daria's big Made-for-TV Movie (the first of two), coming off from the drama at the end of season four.

After The Kiss, when Daria accidentally betrayed her Only Friend Jane by stealing her boyfriend Tom, Jane decides to get away from a repentant Daria by going to an artist's colony for the summer. There she makes a friend named Alison, who is attracted to Jane and causes her to question her own sexuality.

Daria, in turn, gets roped into volunteering at a day camp run by Mr. O'Neill (as does Mr. DeMartino), struggling with that along with her failing relationship with Jane and new romance with Tom. There she meets a Mouthy Kid named Link, whose personal troubles give Daria an unsettling reminder of her own difficulties with people.

Meanwhile, Quinn wants to prove that she's more than just a Brainless Beauty by getting a tutor named David; she not only finds herself getting smarter, but grows attracted to him as well. Other small subplots are sprinkled throughout, like Jodie running herself ragged with activities, Mack getting an awful summer job and Kevin and Brittany trying to be lifeguards.

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Guest stars Bif Naked as Alison, Carson Daly as David Sorenson and Dave Grohl as Daniel Dotson.


This episode provides examples of:

  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Daria realizes that Quinn got really hurt when she tells Daria that she told David how she felt about him (therefor the first time she ever got rejected). After Daria conforts Quinn, Quinn in exchange makes her feel better about her own issues with Tom and Jane. Daria wouldn't admit to Helen that she did care about Quinn, thought.
  • Abuse Mistake: When Mr. O'Neil is talking to Quinn about her test scores, he questions if something is wrong at home, noting that her mother is rather "high strung" with a worried voice (and expecting the worst).
  • Abusive Parents: Stacy's Mother is implied to be one after the girl has a panic attack about how stupid she must be to David, saying her mother always looks at her with a disgusted look.
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  • Ambiguously Bi: Jane starts to get confused about her own sexuality when Allison starts hitting on her, wondering if she could be attracted to women as well. This gets thrown out of the window when Allison shows her true colors. Even after deciding that she is straight after all, she's still a bit wary about it when Daria arrives.
  • Becoming the Mask: Discussed.
    Daria: And I judge myself unfit for human contact.
    Helen: That's exactly what you will be if you don't start engaging with the rest of us! You keep hiding your real face behind that antisocial mask and one day the mask will be your face. I'm not letting that happen. You're working at that camp!
  • Boring Insult: How David first breaks through to Quinn when tutoring her.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Link is basically a genderflipped version of what Daria was in her childhood, to the point it takes her a lot of effort to get him to open up. Despite the misunderstanding, Link takes up on Daria's offer to be penpals.
  • Brutal Honesty: David doesn't hold back from informing Quinn that she's a boring, uninteresting person and the only reason why she's popular is because guys think she's hot.
  • Burger Fool: Mack is forced to look for a summer job to pay off his father for all the allowances he had as a child, ending with a job as the ice-cream truck driver. When he finally gets enough money, he just dumps the job to Kevin and Brittany.
  • Character Development: Tons for Daria and Quinn, a good bit for Jane (though mostly in helping her return to her usual confidence). Heck, even Mr. O'Neill and Mr. DeMartino get some, though they're more-or-less back to normal in season five.
    • While it's not a radical change, Link starts to open up to Daria during the camp, even after he gets angry at her for the misunderstanding. He ends up accepting Daria's offer to be penpals, and takes the first steps by writing her a short letter complaining about his step-father.
  • Continuity Nod: Mack and Jodie’s summer activities were mentioned in previous episodes during season four. Jodie noted how Mack had been overdrawn on his allowance since he was in elementary school, and was finally going to pay his dad back by taking a job driving an ice cream truck. Jodie meanwhile, was unable to talk her parents out of forcing her into a summer internship, and excessive “volunteer” work.
  • Cue the Falling Object: Mr DeMartino smashes through a window and he and a group of cheering children set off through the frame on a hike. As Daria and Link look on in bemusement, a glass shard drops from the top of the frame.
  • Defrosting Ice King: Link takes a while to start trusting Daria, but his own insecurities made him get away by interpreting Daria's efforts to get closer to him as an obligation from her part. He eventually accepts Daria's offer to be penpals by writing her a brief letter about his problems at home with his step-father.
  • Depraved Bisexual: Alison, not in the usual Anything That Moves sense, but she's a Manipulative Bitch who tries to seduce Jane and dates Daniel Dotson just to get up in the art world.
  • Fan of Underdog: The kids wind up loving Mr. DeMartino after he makes the local bully cry and then discovers his "fun" side.
  • Give Geeks a Chance: Inverted and Deconstructed with Quinn and David, since he rejects her.
  • Got Volunteered: Helen volunteered Daria for the Okay to Cry Corral, seeing how Jane's absence was leaving her isolated and lazy.
  • Hypocrite: Allison was initially the one person besides Jane who thought Daniel was a hack, but by the end of the movie she's willing to sleep with him if it means advancing her art career.
  • "I Hate" Song: The opening theme, "Turn the Sun Down" by Splendora, consists of complaints about summer.
  • I Have This Friend: Daria uses this when trying to connect with Link, who doesn't explicitly question it.
  • Incompatible Orientation: When Jane tells Alison that she's straight, Alison insists that she never hits on straight girls, making Jane question herself. Ultimately, though, Jane concludes that she is straight and Alison is just a Manipulative Bitch.
  • Insufferable Genius: Daniel Dotson's utterly in love with himself and his horrible artwork, and it doesn't help that he's surrounded by asskissers willing to feed his ego if he can give their careers a boost.
  • My God, You Are Serious!: Daria's reaction when Jane tells her about what happened with Alison. It's one of the few times she genuinely expresses shock.
    Jane: I did make one friend at that camp, but she got a little fresh.
    Daria: ...You're not kidding, are you?
  • Poor Communication Kills: Just as Link was starting to open to Daria, Mr. O'Neil gives a compliment to Daria's progress with Link, which makes Link think that she only approached him out of obligation, and refuses to listen to her, even after they part ways on the last day.
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Even after she starts being serious about her studies, David considers Quinn too shallow to want to date her.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: David threatens Quinn to leave if she doesn't take their sessions seriously. He actually leaves on the spot after dealing with Tiffany and Sandi in less than an hour with each of them.
  • Terrible Interviewees Montage: David trying to teach the other Fashion Club members is a variant. He winds up dropping Sandi and Tiffany pretty quickly; it's unknown if he keeps Stacy.
  • Title Drop: Link's first line, summing up his view of the Okay to Cry Corral.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Kevin and Brittany are this in both their summer jobs. First as lifeguards at the local pool, breaking a lot of rules that would have gotten anyone killed there, even themselves, so they were promptly fired. When both start working at the ice-cream truck, the children pick up the fact that both of them can't do basic math when dealing with the change, so they take advantage of this to get more money. The worst part is that neither Kevin or Brittany realize this.
  • True Art Is Incomprehensible: Daniel Dotson is famous in-universe for a work called "Paper Plate Genocide." Most of the artists eat it up, but neither Jane nor Allison is impressed.
  • Understanding Boyfriend: Despite having a few fights due to their stressful jobs, Mack makes some time to finally see Jodie. He explains that after he finally paid off his dad, he only endured the job for a few more weeks to save up some cash to have a date with her. Jodie is clearly touched by Mack's patience with her insane schedule.
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