In 1993, ABC premiered a new show about a young boy growing up in the suburbs of Philadelphia. Now as a young boy growing up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, I was hooked right then and there. Boy Meets World was about Cory Matthews growing up and dealing with life with his family, friends and school. The first season delt with Cory and best friend Shawn as sixth graders, preparing for High School. The show was always light in tone with the biggest thing they really dealt with being the concept that Cory may not grow up to be a baseball player for the Philadelphia Phillies. The comedy-drama would often bounce back and forth between light hearted and deep episodes as the show would go on, trying to balance it out for it’s fans who were also growing up with the characters. Of course there would still be the outlandishness of flash forwards to Cory and Shawn as old men or everyone being sent back in time to World War II. Hell, there’s even an episode where they’re all being killed off in the school by a “Scream-like” murderer, but the show always found a good balance between making you laugh and (yes I’ll admit it) making you want to cry.
The first season introduces us to Corys’ (Ben Savage) parents Allen (William Russ) and Amy (Betsy Randle), older brother Eric (Will Friedle) and little sister Morgan (Lily Nicksay in seasons 1 & 2, Lindsay Ridgeway in season 3 – 7.) Cory’s best friend Shawn (Rider Strong) was differenet in that Cory was your regular “middle class” kid while Shawns’ family was shown as being not so well off living in a run down trailer park. Other characters included Topanga (Danielle Fishel), a hippie girl who evolved over the seasons into a more normal girl who would become Cory’s girlfriend and later on wife. Mr. Feeny (William Daniels), the Matthews next door neighbor and Corys’ sixth grade teacher, later on his principal in high school and later on follows them to college. Feeny is a mentor to all the kids but has a much stronger relationship with Eric, who is often shown as having to study and work harder. Then there were slews of other characters like Stuart Mincus (Lee Norris), Jonathan Turner (Anthony Tyler Quinn), Chet Hunter (Blake Clark), and later on the main characters of Jack (Matthew Lawrence), Angela (Trina McGee) and Rachel (Maitland Ward.)
As seasons progressed the show would border more on the dramatic side for many episodes, dealing with things like abuse, racism, sex, and often the relationships between the friends and families. Shawn’s relationship with his Dad is a story arc that goes across multiple seasons as his Dad leaves to search for Shawns’ runaway mom. The relationship between Cory and Topanga is usually at the forefront of the show, as they deal with the ups and downs of dating in high school. Cory is often portrayed as being slightly neurotic, obsessing over things where as best friend Shawn is the laid back and easy going of the group, with Topanga attempting to keep them out of trouble. By the end of seven seasons, Boy Meets World had won numerous awards for it’s young actors and had gained a huge following of fans. After an initial release of the first 3 DVDs, sales didn’t go well. Due to fan feedback and letters, ABC rereleased the first three seasons again and has since been releasing the rest of the seasons every few months. The seventh and final season due to be released in early October.
Whether they want you to take the rolls, if you miss making the “FEE-HEE-HEE-HEE-NAY!” call, or simply gasping “To-PANGA!” Boy Meets World through it’s DVD releases and reruns on ABC Family have led to a whole new generation of fans to experience life with Cory and the gang as he deals with the ups and downs of life.
PETER believes that everything he learned in life, he learned from Mr. Feeny.