Someone has compiled every instance of the ‘show-within-a-show’ from MTV cult hit Daria
UPDATE: Unfortunately, due to a copyright claim by MTV, this video has been removed and is no longer available.
"What's that you're really stirring in your tea? Honey, or bee vomit? Tonight on Sick, Sad World!" This is just one of many of the bizarre, ridiculous cuts from Daria's show-within-a-show Sick, Sad World. Now, thanks to YouTube user Steven Kerber, you can watch every single appearance the zany show makes in MTV's Daria – across all five seasons. Generally used as a transition or a welcome distraction, the only TV show that characters watched within Daria quickly became a running gag. It was Daria's answer to The Itchy & Scratchy show from The Simpsons. Basically a moving pictures version of Weekly World News' eyebrow-raising headlines, it was a novel way to comment on the weird things that popular culture spewed out. “The best thing about MTV was that they gave you complete creative control,” says Daria creator Glenn Eichler. “I think it was just because I didn’t know better but we weren’t pressured to do anything about anyone or anybody.”
What that meant for the show's team of writers was that no subject was off limits. However, due to constraints of the early 90s, nothing timely could really be riffed on. “At that time, an animation episode took nine months to complete, so you couldn’t be that topical,” says Eichler. “We did want to be in the zeitgeist. We did one episode about a dot com, it was (Daria's dad) Jake joining a dot com company. The internet was exploding at the time we wrote that and by the time it was animated, the internet had collapsed. You couldn’t be too timely or you’d have egg on your face.” Focused on culture's extreme periphery, Sick, Sad World helped to immediately convey a sense of character; it was akin to how cool you were if you owned a Guinness Book of World Records as a tween, reciting shock facts to impress your friends. It also underlined the show's sarcastic bent and echoed it's DGAF maxim. “I think the message was always that hypocrisy is bad, people are lying to you,” deadpans Eichler. “That was the overriding message.”