Sometimes a TV show we vaguely remember kind of liking from our childhood is seen later and enjoyed on an entirely different level. For me, that show is MTV's cult favorite Daria. It aired from 1997-2002, and I remember occasionally watching it and being amused, but at the same time not entirely understanding what I was seeing.
Now, thanks to the magic of youtube and soon a long awaited DVD release, I've been able to enjoy the show. And now, after going to high school and just in general becoming a more bitter and disillusioned person, the show has instantly become one of my favorites.
The show's bespectacled heroine, Daria Morgendorffer, is an extremely cynical and smart girl. The show chronicles her through her high school years, dealing with her eccentric family (including her popular sister Quinn) and the general absurdity of her suburban town. Daria is famous for wearing the same green jacket and boots, and rarely showing emotion unless it is a smile at the expense of someone else's misfortune.
The show is unflinchingly funny, with most of the humor coming from Daria and her friend Jane's sarcastic quips about the world around them. High school stereotypes, cliques, and impending college doom are all satirized perfectly. The characters are nearly all interesting and well rounded. I'm actually amazed a show this intelligent lasted so long on a channel like MTV (no offense to MTV fans... actually offense to them, what do I care).
For people like me who missed this show the first time around, I can't recommend it enough. It might be the funniest high school show ever on TV. An anonymous hero has uploaded most of the episodes onto youtube, and you can watch them here.