Mike's Delayed Reaction Review-#504 (5-57), "Camp Fear"

MDRR #504 (5-57)

Camp Reunion? - I've never actually gone to summer camp. My dad was sent to one when he was a kid and has called it "the worst summer of [his] life" and vowed never to send his children to camp. Anyway, I don't really know anything about summer camps, but I find it hard to believe that they really have camp reunions. Camp seems to be an almost universally despised concept that I wouldn't think anyone would want to be reminded of his or her time there. At least it seemed that way for the Grizzly alums - none of them seemed too thrilled to be there.

Downward Spiral - Trent seriously needed some time away from his bandmates. They were caught in one of those bickering fights that they apparently have every so often (even though we haven't seen much of it on screen). Trent only needed to get away from them for a while - the problem was that he had to be a focus group for backwoods snack food entrepreneurs (and unwittingly bring Jane along for the torture). Of course, they weren't really that helpful, their "country wisdom" didn't really apply - Trent should have fought the dip more.

Funny Word of the Week - I think I'll go with echolalia. I like the way that sounds, echolalia.

The More Things Change... - Quinn seemed to genuinely look forward to the camp reunion, as a way to recapture the innocence of her youth. Ironically enough, her pre-Lawndale, middle school days seem to be almost identical to her present situation, even down to the similarities in her circles of friends. In my opinion, Quinn's camp friends being just like her regular friends was the lamest part of this episode, but it does showcase her uniqueness. She seems to be unreplacable (now that would have made things more bearable - Quinn coming face to face with her replacement, but it also would have increased the lameness factor).

Gah! Cleaning the Garage! - Jake and Helen ended up cleaning the garage while the girls were at camp - without any provocation! Anyway, all of Helen and Jake's scenes were retreads of everything we've ever seen of them. Helen is busy, Jake feels neglected. He gets mad, she says she was going to surprise him and then he ends up getting distracted by something shiny. This episode could've done without all of this "new" interaction.

Skip-it, Skip-it - Resident Big-Man-on-Camp, Skip Stevenson, was, in a word, pathetic. He was obviously way too caught up in all of the camp stuff. Whatever the traumatic event in his childhood was (if there was one), he became the pseudo-dictator of Camp Grizzly. And; surprise, surprise; the campers hardly liked him. And you know this guy is weird if he can out-talk Quinn.

Funny Word of the Week - I think I'll go with echolalia. I like the way that sounds, echolalia.

Country Bumpkins - Trent and Jane's junk food fixated captors were more or less blank slates. I thought I had formed more of an opinion on them; I guess I didn't.

Amelia - Amelia was almost an interesting character. She sort of fell into the same trap that Quinn did; her memories of camp seemed somewhat removed from reality. But she was still sort of leechy and the opposite of Daria, in the sense that she was the ultimate joiner. Daria did inadvertently break this pattern by being mean to her. She did end up standing up to Skip, but maybe she was just trying to suck up to Daria. Then again, all of her compliments of Daria were backhanded. I don't know, this one confused me too.

Camp Fear just didn't do it for me. The flashback scenes, were insignificant (and I expected more revealing memories), the parallels between Quinn's old friends and new friends were lame, Trent and Jane's little adventure was pointless and Helen and Jake's problems are old news. This one's pretty much a snoozer.

Grade: C+

Daria as a Whole #1, Funny Word of the Week - I think I'll go with echolalia. I like the way that sounds, echolalia.

Daria as a Whole #2, Where is Springf... er, Lawndale - I was going to go on a little bit about what clues we have here to Lawndale’s location, but that would be a pointless as the rest of this episode.

Copyright © 2001 Mike Quinn [All Rights Reserved].

"Daria" and all related characters are © 1997-2001 MTV Networks, Inc.