Daria encounters two kids identifying themselves as Cupid (AKA Valentine's Day) and the Saint Patrick's Day leprechaun, who claim that Christmas, Halloween, and Guy Fawkes Day ("British dude") have left Holiday Island and gone to Lawndale to start a band. Daria refuses to believe it, but is eventually convinced... starting with Cupid putting Helen and Jake under a love spell.
At Jane's house, Daria meets the three errant holidays, who've come there to jam with Trent, and takes all of them out for pizza at Pizza King, where they encounter Cupid and St. Patrick's Day. The holidays refuse to return because Holiday Island sucks; Cupid warns that this means the human holidays of Christmas, Halloween, and Guy Fawkes Day will cease to exist, but Daria and Jane don't care.
Meanwhile, Quinn is convinced that her parents' newfound amorous feelings signal an intent to have another child, and starts following them around to keep them from having sex. Having failed to convince Daria to help them, Cupid and St. Patrick's Day attempt to recruit Kevin and Brittany, but redouble their efforts to get Daria's help after they actually talk to the two. A trip to the mall -- showing that Christmas and Halloween sales are dying -- doesn't convince her, nor do the annoying antics of the three AWOL holidays, but an amorous Helen and Jake prove to be the last straw.
When Daria and Jane arrive at Holiday Island, they find that it's just like a high school and that the "beautiful people" -- in this case, the President's Day presidents -- have taken over. Daria cooks up a scheme to put Christmas, Halloween, and Guy Fawkes back in their rightful position at the top of the pack by convincing them to play at the Holiday Island High School Prom. The holidays decide to stay after they see who's running the place, and Quinn is finally off the hook when Cupid's love spell wears off and Helen and Jake go back to their old, arguing selves.
Reputation of the Episode
For the longest time, many Daria fans considered Depth Takes a Holiday as one of the worst episodes ever written. The bulk of the complaints come from the "off-canon" nature of the episode, where there is no disclaimer of any kind that this is a dream or some figment of Daria's imagination. It is one of only two Daria episodes that a number of fans view as non-canonical, the other being the equally silly "Daria!" - and "Depth" is the one that's more often dumped.
There is a segment of the fandom that appreciates "Depth Takes a Holiday" for its creativity and general wackiness. As time goes on, people admit, in public, that they liked it.
Marcil himself has said "it was crazy, it was so crazy. I may have to go back and look at it but it was such a weird peyote-like episode."
- Since Cupid and St Patrick's Day are pointing to direct and presently-occuring problems caused by the Holidays being on Earth, this episode has to take place sometime during the autumn, before October 31st. (Notably, all three of the escapee holidays take place within a two-month space of each other.) This would fit with the assumption that Daria Series 3 and Series 4 take place during Daria's junior year at Lawndale High School, placing this early Season 3 episode early in the academic year, whether any episodes will conflict with this or not. An MTV website flipbook (now dead) said the holidays were on the run for a fortnight.
- The episode's title is derived from the 1934 film Death Takes a Holiday.
- The holidays are described as "holiday spirits" by Daria.
- The backgrounds used for Lawndale High School have clearly been reused for the Holiday Island High School. The locker design is the same except that the lockers are now colored blue, and murals of ocean waves have been added to the formerly bare purple walls.
- The band that Halloween, Christmas, and Guy Fawkes Day wish to start is described as having a "hiphop-punk-electronica vibe" by Cupid. Their song I'm a Teen Holiday doesn't sound at all electronic, but perhaps that will change when one of the guitars is replaced with a keyboard.
- The British holiday is actually Guy Fawkes Night or Bonfire Night.
- When asked who the bulk of Holiday Island students are, Cupid replies "Bunch of saint's days. Who can keep track?". Valentine's Day is itself a saint's day, which he (read: the writers) seems to have forgotten. Saint Patrick's Day seems to have forgotten too...
- There's an adult janitor sweeping up the Holiday High prom. What holiday is he?? Is he an outside contractor??
- This is the only episode in which Daria admits her feelings for Trent. This was accomplished by Cupid's interrogation. During the romantically intense interrogation, Daria legitimately smiles.
- In the Latin American version, St. Patrick's Day is named el duende irlandés (the Irish elf), Halloween is named Día de muertos (Day of the Dead), and Guy Fawkes Day is named Bastilla (Bastille Day).