"I'm a real idiot. There's no question about it."
Daria's first boyfriend, formerly Jane's.
Tom Sloane made his appearance at a Mystik Spiral concert at the Zon, and immediately hit it off with Jane - though he was destined to be with Daria instead. Tom is a fairly nice, decent guy, smart, savvy, and well able to cross verbal swords with Daria or Jane.
Daria resented Jane and Tom's relationship because of how much it cut into her and Jane's time together. She never really got over this until it was no longer an issue. Tom and Jane's relationship turned rocky after a while, due to several reasons. Among them were Jane's obsession with her art, their lack of common interests, a series of miscommunications, but perhaps most importantly, Tom's growing attraction to Daria - an attraction which was returned.
A serious rift occurred in Daria and Jane's friendship when Tom kissed Daria in his car one night. Over the course of the summer, Daria and Tom dated sporadically, and their budding relationship nearly fell apart due in a large part to Daria's feelings of guilt and her reluctance to become emotionally involved. However, they were able to mend their differences due in large part to Jane's forgiving them both for their transgressions.
Tom's interests include foreign movies, classic literature, and exchanging witty commentary with Daria. Jane points out that "Daria and Tom" makes a lot more sense than "Jane and Tom" and she's probably right. He prefers a relaxed attitude while dating, and would rather spend an evening reading the greeting cards at a drugstore than go to a fancy restaurant. But he is encouraging to Daria, telling her that her writing is worthy of being published (even though the story she submits is rejected) and getting behind her when she tries to apply to prestigious Bromwell University (even though she prefers Raft and ends up going there instead).
Tom's family (Angier, Kay, Elsie) has a lot of money. They vacation at a place called "the Cove" and their home is large and elegant. Tom attends a prep school rather than Lawndale High, and is assured of getting into an ivy-league college called "Bromwell" in part due to his family's history and influence with the school. Even though his family is very wealthy, Tom drives an old, rusty car. He eventually trades up to a slightly less old, rusty car once owned by his grandmother.
He claims his household is repressed, and is fascinated by Daria's tales of intra-family combat.
Tom is sexually attracted to Daria and is just waiting for her to be ready, which she claims to be about six to ten months into their relationship. He pulls out all the stops he can to make it a memorable experience, but Daria bows out at the last minute. Tom takes it in stride, and accepts that she wasn't ready yet. They never do have sex.
Tom is accepted to Bromwell University, which was essentially inevitable as his
relatives have donated huge sums of money there and most of his family has attended in past years. When Daria is rejected, Tom offers to have his parents write a letter of recommendation, with the result that she is rejected again. Daria decides to break up with him based on the fact that they don't really have much in common and going to different colleges will amplify that. Tom doesn't want to break up, but after some argument accepts her decision. They agree to get together as friends at some later date.