Pilot Episode

Written by Warpedkjh13


(Stay Hungry by Twisted Sister)

Are you feeling the fire, are you ready to explode?
Are your dreams and desires riding down an open road?
I'm like a runaway, a heart without a home
Others can laugh and play
I'll fight for every inch I take, I'm desperate to the bone

Stay hungry, feel the fire
Stay hungry, don't explode
Stay hungry, with desire
Stay hungry, you're alone


(Helen is on the sofa as Daria heads for the front door.)

DARIA: Can't talk... top secret mission.

HELEN: Well, complete your mission soon because I'm sending you on another one. Mr. O'Neill called looking for day camp volunteers and I signed you up.

DARIA: You didn't.

HELEN: You start Monday. I'm sorry, but you're not staying locked up in your room all summer.

DARIA: So instead, you're going to lock me up with a busload of whiny kids and the poor man's Kathy Lee Gifford.

HELEN: Daria, you need to be more tolerant. You know what they say. "Judge and be judged."

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.

(She stands up.)

HELEN: 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.

(She leaves.)

DARIA: What about my feelings? What about my rights?

(The door shuts.)

DARIA: What about my bribe?


(Link is typing in his journal on the computer.)

LINK (V.O.): He's making me go to some stupid summer camp. The 'OK To Cry Corral' or something like that. And you know I have no choice. Well, wish me luck.

(The bus to the camp pulls up out front.)

LINK (V.O.): I guess I'll be leaving now.

(He turns off the computer and walks out and boards the bus. The bus drives off.)


(Daria Morgendorffer and Anthony DeMartino are seated together at the front of the bus, while Timothy O'Neill leads the other kids in song. Daria looks like she'd rather be anywhere else, while DeMartino looks like he wants to tear a hole in the side of the bus to escape.)

O'NEILL AND KIDS (singing to "This Old Man"): With a knickknack, gentle pat, give the dog a bone, this young person helps out at home.

O'NEILL: Now just the counselors. (singing) This young person, he played...

(He sees the look on Daria's and Mr. DeMartino's faces.)

O'NEILL: Oh, dear.

(Link looks at Daria and smirks.)

O'NEILL: We're just about to reach the camp, so get your bags ready.

(Link pulls down his bag and pulls out a sandwich. He unwraps it and throws it at O'Neill.)


(Daria looks at Link with slight admiration. She chuckles at this one piece of excitement.)


(Link is now really bored. He sits with three other kids. He has his head rested on his folded arms.)

O'NEILL: Greetings, and welcome to the Okay to Cry Corral. I'm Uncle Timothy, and together, we're going to take a journey to the land of self-discovery. A land where it's okay to laugh, and it's okay... to cry.

DARIA: I feel like doing that now.

O'NEILL: And now, I'd like my co-counselors, Daria and Uncle Anthony, to say a few words about what they hope to accomplish here.

DEMARTINO: After YOU, Daria.

DARIA: Thanks, Uncle Anthony. My goal is to get out of this unscathed.

(Link looks up at Daria, then puts his head down again.)

DEMARTINO: I'm hoping to rediscover the JOYS and SATISFACTIONS of TEACHING, and the motives that led me to pursue such a THANKLESS... I mean, REWARDING profession in the first place. At least that's what my doctor says I need to do before I incur a cerebral HEMORRHAGE!

O'NEILL: Uncle Anthony... (chuckles nervously) I mean, what are your goals for the campers?

DEMARTINO: Oh. Um... (pulls out a cue card) To help make this a PLEASURABLE experience for all. Let's learn to love ourselves together.

(A pause.)

O'NEILL: Okay. (chuckles nervously) Let's divide into three groups, shall we? One, two, three. Daria, you take group one.

(Daria approaches her group, which contains Link.)

DARIA: Um... hello. Would, um, anyone like to say anything before we get started?

KID #1: How come you're so pale?

KID #2: Why do you bite your nails?

KID #3: Do you ever smile?

DARIA: (to Link) Um, how about you? Would you like to say anything?

(Link slowly raises his head.)

LINK: Is it fall yet?

(Daria looks forlorn at this. Link slowly puts his head back in his arms. Daria sighs.)


(Link's room mates are attacking each other with pillows.)

KID #1: Come on, Link! Join us!

LINK: Okay.

(Link sneaks over to his bag, opens it and pulls out his pillow. He debates it for a second.)

KID #2: Come on, it unleashes the anger and frees your soul!

LINK: I don't know if my soul really wants to be freed. It's too busy gnawing on the bone I gave it.

JOSH: Don't worry about him, he's a loser.

LINK: Oh, am I now?

(Link sneaks a few rocks from his bag as the other kids continue. He puts the rocks in his pillow. He walks over to Josh and whacks him in the face with the pillow. There is dead silence in the cabin.)

KID #2: That's a hell of a pillow you have there.

(Link walks over to the window and looks out. It is sunset, just the perfect time to be walking. Link walks out of the cabin.)


(Link looks happy as he looks at the sunset. Then O'Neill walks up to him and blocks his view.)

O'NEILL: Link! What are you doing outside?

LINK: Well, I was watching the sun set, but you've obviously got other plans.

O'NEILL: You'd better go inside now, or the insects will get you.

LINK: I don't really care if the insects get me.

O'NEILL: Now, Link, that's not really the attitude we have come to expect of the patrons of the OK To Cry Corral.

LINK: So, I guess you want us to act as tedious as this camp is?

O'NEILL: Well, if you put it that way...

LINK: I am so tired of you 'sensitive new age men' coming up to me and expecting that I'm all innocent and goody-goody. Well they're wrong!


LINK: And another thing, I am stuck with idiots at my school all day, every day, and I'm also stuck with the world's worst idiot at home. You think you can help me by turning me into a clean cut, all American, innocent lad? Think again!

(Link storms back into the cabin. O'Neill walks off, sobbing.)


(The kids are in the activities room. They're not happy.)

O'NEILL: Now, I want each of you to think of the blue lanyard as representing how you feel on the inside, and the green as how you present yourself on the outside. Picture...

KRISTIN: It's a hundred degrees! Can't we go for a swim in the lake?

KIDS: Yeah... lake!

O'NEILL: Now, Kristin... do we really want to risk exposure to algae blooms? Maybe some other time, when it's not quite as warm out.

(The kids groan.)

DEMARTINO: The BLUE strand represents the GNAWING feeling of FAILURE growing with each wasted year. The green represents the ULCER you're developing from the unrelenting INDIGNITIES you suffer. Take the blue and cross it under... I mean, OVER the loop and then through the FRUSTRATION... argh...! Lanyards suck!

(DeMartino gets up and walks away, leaving the kids confused. Link is more depressed. He is just stabbing at his lanyard, making a mess of it.)

DARIA: Continue threading the blue with the green until you've finished. Or can't take the tedium anymore.

(Daria picks up a book. Link walks up to her with his mangled lanyard.)

DARIA: Hey, Link. Need some help?

LINK: Nope. All done.

(Link throws the mangled lanyard onto the desk and walks out. Daria looks at it.)


(Link climbs a hill that he found, so he can isolate himself from the rest of the group. He watches the sun on the lake. He sees Daria walk out and drive off in a car.)

LINK: Me too.


(The kids are all getting ready for bed. The kid Link hit with the rock filled pillow has his nose bandaged. He watches Link angrily as he empties the rocks from his pillow. The kid picks up one of the rocks and throws it at Link.)


KID #2: That's not nice, Josh!

JOSH: That's just too bad.

(Josh keeps throwing stones at Link. The other kids grab Josh's arms and take the rocks off of him.)

KID #2: Leave Link alone!

KID #1: It's bad enough for him here without you hurting him all the time.

(Link smiles. He has made some new friends. One of the kids lets go of Josh, who goes to bed angrily.)

KID #2: Hi, I'm Humphrey.

LINK: Hi. Uh... thanks.


O'NEILL: Remember, don't think about what you're doing, because I don't really want a painting from you. I want a painting from the child within.

GIRL: It's so pretty out. Can't we go for a hike? Please?

(The other kids join in and also plead to go outside.)

O'NEILL: Now, campers. I wouldn't be a very caring counselor if I let you run higgledy-piggledy through the poison ivy and ticks. One day there'll be time to explore the woods, after we explore ourselves.

(All the kids sigh. Every now and then Josh flicks paint at Link, who is painting a depressing picture of a boy standing in the rain next to a tree with no leaves. DeMartino walks up to Josh.)

DEMARTINO: Well, well, Josh. What have we HERE? A football player? May I inquire why?

JOSH: My child within wants to be a winner. Everyone knows football players are winners.

DEMARTINO: I see. Obviously, your definition of a winner is a degenerate SLACKER with pigskin for BRAINS, an UNSHAKABLE desire to SLEEP through class, and a lifetime goal of excelling at ARM NOISE contests while NEVER, EVER doing any honest work of ANY KIND! Is that RIGHT?

(Josh breaks out in tears and runs off. Link smirks. O'Neill takes DeMartino aside to talk to him.)

O'NEILL: Oh, my gosh. Anthony, what happened?

DEMARTINO: I, uh... Timothy, I think I may have spoken too HARSHLY to a camper.

O'NEILL: Oh, no. Was he traumatized?

DEMARTINO: I'm no GOOD at working with young people! Why, oh, WHY did I ever think I could?

(The kids shout and clap.)

KID #1: Josh is the worst bully at camp!

GIRL: I hate his child within.

KID #2: Hooray for Uncle Anthony!

KIDS: Uncle Anthony! Uncle Anthony!

DEMARTINO: Oh, thank you, campers.

(Daria walks up behind Link, who puts the finished touches to his painting.)


(Link sits serenely. Suddenly, we hear distant shouts.)

O'NEILL (distant): Link! Link! Get down from there! I want to talk to you!

(Link grunts angrily.)


LINK: What do you want now?

O'NEILL: Link, I asked you to stop by because I've noticed you seem a little bit... subdued.

LINK: I was gonna say miserable, but okay.

O'NEILL: Growing up is kind of like being a kite, isn't it? We want to fly, but we don't really trust ourselves to cut the parental string and soar with the birds. (chuckles)

LINK: A kite doesn't fly if you cut its string. It blows around in the wind for a while and then crashes.

O'NEILL: Exactly. Just the way we...

LINK: You might know that if you ever took us outside.

O'NEILL: Oh, well, I...

LINK: What do you know? 'Cause it seems to me you spout out a lot of crap about loving ourselves, and that doesn't do any good to someone trying to figure out why his mother threw his father out for being a jerk and then went and married a bigger one.

O'NEILL: Oh, well, that certainly sounds like something we can talk about...

LINK: I don't want to talk about it. I want to go to a real camp where you run around all day doing stuff until you're too tired to think. Can we do that, "Uncle Timothy"?

O'NEILL: Well, you see, Link, much as I'd like to, we have to keep the other children's safety in mind.

LINK (stands): That's what I thought. You don't really care about making kids feel better.

O'NEILL: Of course I do!

LINK: Okay, then I guess the problem is that you suck at it.

(He slams the door as he walks out.)


(Daria is sitting with a couple of other kids when she spots Link storming angrily towards the exit.)

DARIA: Um, keep up the good work.

(She follows Link, catching up with him near the exit.)

DARIA: Hey, everything okay?

LINK: How can you stand this place?

DARIA: Um, 'cause I'm one of the guards instead of the prisoners?

LINK: Yeah. Right.

DARIA: Look, you want to go for a walk?

LINK (sarcastically): Outside? That would be dangerous.

DARIA: Tell you what. I won't say a word. It'll be just like going by yourself, except for the by-yourself part.

(She opens the door and walks outside with Link.)


DARIA: So where are we going again?

LINK: You'll see. Just follow me.


(Link and Daria climb up.)

DARIA: Wow. It really is beautiful from up here.

LINK: I know.

DARIA: Link, I know we've each got our own problems.

LINK: What gave me away?

DARIA: I'm not really good at this, but I sort of want us to be... uh... friends.

LINK: I'm warning you now... I'm not a good friend.

DARIA: Neither am I.

(Daria puts her arm around Link. They almost look like mother and son.)

DARIA: You know what, Link?

LINK: What?

DARIA: You're a cool kid.

LINK: Hey! I'm not one of those kids that needs your sympathy, like Carrie. I can take care of myself.

(Link climbs down the hill, leaving Daria to wonder what the hell just happened.)


(The campers, plus Daria and Mr. DeMartino, are sitting in a circle. In the center is O'Neill, who is trying to engage the students in yet another feel-good exercise.)

O'NEILL: Now, everyone hold the hand of the person next to them while we all visualize the same word: "trust."

CURTIS: But we've been sitting inside all day. Can't we go out and play? Please?

O'NEILL: Now, Curtis, we're listening to our souls. It's much easier to hear them indoors.

(The kids sigh.)

BOY: Uncle Anthony, can't you talk to him?

GIRL: You're such a great counselor.

DEMARTINO: Um, Uncle Timothy... perhaps little Curtis has a POINT. Maybe frolicking OUTDOORS would offer a refreshing COUNTERPOINT to sitting in a circle like a quilting bee of shut-ins!

O'NEILL: Anthony, please. You're supposed to be setting an example. Besides, quilting can be very therapeutic.

(There is an alarm beeping.)

O'NEILL: Now... oops. Time for my Echinacea. I'll be back in a jiffy. Now everyone, hold hands and feel the warmth.

(He walks away. DeMartino and the campers reluctantly hold hands. DeMartino pulls his hands away to reveal that they are covered in peanut butter.)

DEMARTINO: Argh! Peanut butter! Sitting in circles... stupid songs... arts and crafts... cruel and unusual... HELL! I can't take it anymore!

(DeMartino runs over to the sink and rips it out of the wall with a grunt, then flings it through the nearest plate-glass window.)

DEMARTINO: I'm going on a hike!

(He climbs out the window, then everybody but Daria and Link follow him out.)

DARIA: Come on. Even I'll admit that was mildly amusing.

LINK: Whatever.

DARIA: Look, for what it's worth, when I was your age, I, um... had this friend who was kind of like you. The only people she liked were the ones in books, and she spent most of her time in her room convinced the world had been quietly taken over by a race of idiot space aliens.

LINK: And then one day your "friend" grew out of it and went on to make many more friends, and now her life is one big bowl of cherries.

DARIA: Okay. Bad example. But maybe things would have been a little easier for my friend if she hadn't kept everything bottled up inside. You know, if she'd had someone to talk to.

LINK: Or maybe "she" did try talking, and the people just told her to shut up, or paid someone else to deal with her because they were too busy "listening to their souls."

DARIA: You think that's what's happening to you?

LINK: Hey, look around, Daria. Everybody's so busy being their own best friend, maybe they should try buddying up to the people they brought into the damn world, who never asked to be born.


(They have an uncomfortable pause.)

LINK: So, what books does your "friend" like to read, anyway?

DARIA: Well, let's see. When she was 12, she was really into George Orwell...

(O'Neill suddenly arrives, proving that he has the absolute worst possible timing of anyone on the planet.)

O'NEILL: Daria! Link! Having a little one-on-one session?

DARIA: Yes, and so by definition, it can't include...

O'NEILL: Daria, I knew you could do it. See? It's easier to "rap" with Daria than with me, isn't it? A teen who's closer to your own age. But I'm just as concerned as she is about your well-being.

(Link turns and gives Daria a look of betrayal.)

LINK: I should have known.

(He leaves.)

DARIA: Hey, wait...

O'NEILL: Oh. Did I say something wrong?

(Daria simply glares at him, then leaves too.)

O'NEILL: Oh, my. What happened to the window? Um... where'd everybody go?


(Link sits at the top of the hill and cries. Daria climbs up and sits next to him.)

DARIA: Link, listen-

LINK: No, you listen. I am sick and tired of people betraying me. My mother left my real father, who I never see, and married the world's worst idiot, who is dedicated to making my life a living hell. And now I've been betrayed by the one person who I felt I could trust? Do you know how that feels?

DARIA: I know someone who does.

(Flashback to Daria and Jane walking the corridors.)


JANE: Hey!

DARIA: Oh. Hi.

JANE: What's up? What's going on? How you doing?

DARIA: Great.

JANE: No walkee to school today? What happened?

(There is no response from Daria.)

JANE: Hey, what's up? Talk to me.

DARIA: I kissed your boyfriend.

(That's not a response Jane expected, she freezes on the spot, wide-eyed and disbelieving.)

JANE: What?

DARIA: I kissed your boyfriend. I kissed Tom. I didn't mean to.

(With a frown, Jane runs off at top speed, leaving Daria alone in a knot of students.)

DARIA - I'm sorry! I'm sorry!


LINK: Oh, that's great, I'm not the first person you've betrayed.

DARIA: Link-

LINK: Don't talk to me. I hate you! Keep the hell away from me!

(Link climbs down.)

DARIA: Okay then.


(Link is stuck in a jungle, but the trees have no leaves. Suddenly rain starts to fall on Link.)

LINK: Why do all of the others have all the luck?

(Another Link emerges from the forest.)

LINK #2: They don't have all of the luck. You do.

LINK: What do you mean?

LINK #2: I mean that you're lucky that you have people like Daria around. She didn't betray you.

LINK: Go to hell!

(Link whacks at the second Link and he disappears like a puff of smoke. Daria comes out from the forests.)

DARIA: Link, stop feeling so damned sorry for yourself. Be a man.

LINK: That's right. Be a man!

(Daria vanishes.)

LINK: Wait! Daria! I'm sorry!

(Suddenly Josh appears in her place.)

JOSH: Hi Link. I'm here to repay old unkindnesses.

(Another Josh appears next to him, dressed in a football uniform. Link throws a rock at the football Josh, but nothing happens.)

FOOTBALL JOSH: We're never going to go away, Link. Never.

JOSH: And we'll always be after you.

(The two Joshes leap on Link and beat him up. This is when Link wakes up.)


(Link wakes with a start. It is early in the morning. The cabin is empty. They are leaving.)


(Link is about to board when Daria walks up to him.)

DARIA: Hey, slow down.

LINK: Go to hell!

DARIA: Just hear me out. Mr. O'Neill didn't ask me to speak to you, and I would never tell him anything anyway, except my name, rank and homeroom number.

LINK: Yeah, right.

DARIA: Look, I'm not good at this kind of thing -- probably because I've never done this kind of thing -- but if you ever need someone to talk to, um... I'm around.

LINK: I don't need anyone to talk to. Especially you.

(Link walks away, leaving behind a very dejected Daria. Daria's mother arrives and toots her horn.)

HELEN: Daria? I'm here!

(Daria gets in the car.)


(Link sits by himself sadly. He watches out the window as Daria and Helen drive off. He searches in his bag and pulls out a sandwich to throw at Mr. O'Neill. But there is a note attached to the sandwich. It is from Daria. It reads:

You know, if you want to talk, write me a letter. I live at 1111 Glenn Oaks Lane, Lawndale.

Link smiles and throws the sandwich at O'Neill. He gives O'Neill an innocent smile. He turns to Humphrey, who is sitting beside him.)

LINK: So... are we going to keep in touch?

HUMPHREY: Sure. What's your e-mail address?

(Humphrey takes out a pad and writes it down as Link dictates it.)



(Daria arrives and goes straight up to her bedroom.)


(His mother, Katrina, and stepfather, Geoffrey, are waiting out the front for him. His mother runs up to him and hugs him.)

KATRINA: Oh, Link, we missed you! How was camp?

GEOFFREY: I heard you almost got kicked out for whacking a kid with a pillow filled with rocks.

KATRINA: Oh no, Geoffrey, don't...

GEOFFREY: Your internet priveleges are taken away for a week. Also, no money for a month.

LINK: Nice to see you, too.


(Link pulls out Daria's note and writes her a letter.)

LINK (V.O.): My stepfather sucks. Email me if you want. Link.

(He puts it in an envelope and goes out to the mailbox. We watch him through his window.)


HELEN: Oh, Daria. Here, this came for you...

(She hands Daria an envelope. Rather than open it, however, Daria simply gives her a "how about some privacy, please?" stare.)

HELEN: ...and I guess I'll go see how Quinn is doing.

(She leaves.)

(Daria opens the letter. It's from Link. Daria finally got through to him, which brings a tiny smile to her face.)


(Daria and Jane are walking home from school.)

DARIA: So, I guess I got through to Link after all, and all it cost me was a generous period of self-doubt followed by a bracing stint of self-hatred.

JANE: See? Not every human is a manipulative, opportunistic letch, or at least that's what I'm told.

DARIA: You didn't make any friends at that art colony, did you?

JANE: Nope. Well, except this one girl, until she got fresh.

(That one brings Daria to a halt.)

DARIA: You're not kidding.

JANE: As much as I'd like to gain your sour perspective on the whole sordid incident, it's gonna have to wait.



(Link checks his emails.)

COMPUTER VOICE: You've got mail.

(He opens it. The email is from Daria.)

DARIA (V.O.): Wow, where to begin? Okay, I'm sort of glad that I got through to you, and glad that we can be friends. I have a hell of a story to tell you about my friend Jane...

(Roll end credits.)


Is It Okay To Cry Yet?

Written by Warpedkjh13

Based on Is It Fall Yet? by Glenn Eichler and Peggy Nicoll

Link Werther
Daria Morgendorffer
Geoffrey Werther
Katrina Werther
Humphrey Morgan

Guest Starring
Timothy O'Neill
Anthony DeMartino
Jane Lane
Helen Morgendorffer

And a whole bunch of nameless children