The main characters in the show are Clarissa Darling, her family (consisting of her Hippie Parents.Marshall, her mother Janet and her brother Ferguson Darling) and her best friend Sam. Clarissa and Sam's relationship was a novelty on television at the time, due to few television series allowing a girl and a boy to be merely friends without romance blossoming (One episode featured the idea of their having a romance, but ultimately ended without their getting together). Clarissa also had a pet baby alligator, named Elvis, which she kept in a kiddie-sandbox in the left corner of her room.

In May 2005, the show's first season was released on DVD as part of the Nickelodeon Rewind Collection by Nickelodeon's sister company, Paramount Pictures. The second season was scheduled to be released a few months later, but has been postponed indefinitely.