Topanganza! Our Predictions for ‘Girl Meets World’

a.k.a. Here Are As Many Pictures of Danielle Fishel as We Could Find

So the Internet is all a-twitter and the twitter’s all a-internet about this Girl Meets World business. For those of you who haven’t heard, Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel — who played perpetually bickering lovebirds Cory Matthews and Topanga Lawrence on Boy Meets World — have agreed to come back to star as parents on the show. This is significant for two reasons: 1) while spin-offs are fairly common, to my knowledge there haven’t been too many sequels to shows, and 2) people like remembering things they saw on TV 15 years ago.

So we’re going to try to play catch up on the show, as well as look into our crystal ball to predict where some key characters will end up. And if that doesn’t do anything for you, we’re going to complement the whole article with pictures of our female lead, the lovely Danielle Fishel.


It’s Fishels all the way down from here.


First and foremost, let’s check in on Fishel herself. Since Boy Meets World’s beginning, Fishel’s Topanga Lawrence originally played a kooky, clairvoyant supporting role who eventually lost most of the hippie characteristics and blossomed into a mature, sound, sensible young woman who perfectly complemented lifelong on-again, off-again beau Cory. In essence she was like a female Sandy Cohen from The OC or a pretty Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights. So in other words, I’m about to have a man crush on a lady?

Oh yeah. The entire slideshow at their wedding was pictures of them at frat parties.

Apparently there were characters other than Topanga on the show.

Where we’ll find her on Girl Meets World

Very likely the “straight woman” to Cory’s “zany dad” act, but I’m getting ahead of myself here. Chances are we’ll see Fishel as a little older, a little wiser, and much less willing to put up with BS. In this case, “BS” stands for “Ben Savage” Bazing!

Not her, though. Class act all the way.

We would not try your patience, Future Topanga.

Cory Matthews

Next, the “Boy” himself, Ben Savage. Now, if you’ve never seen Boy Meets World, here’s a quick summary: Ben Savage played Cory Matthews, who began the series as a playful rascal akin to Calvin or Dennis the Menace. But over the course of the show, with every season Matthews turned increasingly more squirmy and nervous, eventually donning a permanent outfit of khakis and a golf shirt. In other words, he basically landed somewhere between Kirk van Houten and Mort Goldman. Put another way, he was wimpy enough that show producers passed up the opportunity to call the show Man Meets World.

Here's that picture again, but more.

Here’s that picture again, but more.

Where we’ll find him on Girl Meets World

There is little to no doubt in my mind that Cory Matthews will continue his downward spiral into “wacky dadness,” until he hits reaches the level of Doug’s Mr. Dink. If he doesn’t crash a riding mower into the living room at some point in season one of Girl Meets World, I owe one of you a drink.

Can't think...straight...can only think...curves...

And if I get to choose who, it will be Ms. Fishel here.

Shawn Hunter

How about Cory’s best friend, whose name was either Shawn Hunter or Rider Strong? I can’t tell which name is fictional and which is real life, because they both sound like Avengers alter-egos. Let’s say Shawn. Shawn was Cory’s badass best friend who came from a broken home and was never seen without a leather jacket. That is, except for that one time that he dressed up like a lady. But we don’t talk about that episode. That made me question things for awhile.

Pictured: Everyone's crush.

But Topanga was there to get me back on track.

Where we’ll find him on Girl Meets World

Probably nowhere, which is a shame considering that he’d be the perfect wacky next door neighbor who was always was trying to bed stewardesses or something.

Ahhhhh! You guys! Now she's dressed like your boss! Aaaahhhh!!

Ahhhhh! You guys! Now she’s dressed like a sexy boss! Aaaahhhh!!

Eric Matthews

That brings us to Eric Matthews, Cory’s older brother. Eric started the show as an antagonistic bully, kind like Wayne from The Wonder Years. But at some point during the show he turned from jerk to lovable, helpless dope. (One Redditor actually surmises that Eric suffered some severe head trauma which has gone unchecked for years). So will good ol’ uncle Eric show up to dispense valuable life lessons to Cory and Topanga’s daughter?

Wait...there are other characters on this show?

Lesson 1: Grow up like your mother.

Where we’ll find him on Girl Meets World

Well, as The People vs. Brian Cullen (2012) proved beyond a shadow of a doubt, I am not a doctor (although I stand by my crunchalicious cure for choco-mania). But I’m pretty sure a human can’t withstand that kind of head injury without some kind of medical attention in the course of 15 years.

So he’s probably dead.

Who's sassy? YOU're sassy!

Who’s sassy? YOU’re sassy!

Mr. Feeny

Another question that’s on everyone’s mind: will Mr. Feeny be returning? For those of you who don’t know or don’t recall, Mr. Feeny, played by William Daniels, was Cory’s middle school teacher, who then improbably gained employment at Cory’s high school and college. He also — coincidentally — moved in next door to Cory’s parents. At no time, during his near decade of constant involvement with the family did anyone think to contact the police.

Where we’ll find him on Girl Meets World

If trends continue, then Feeny will have left teaching to open up a babysitting service, only to find that the first child under his care is *gasp!* Little Ms. Matthews-Lawrence! What are the odds!

All our science tells us Sexy Boss and Cute Girl Next Door cannot exist simultaneously in one woman...but how do you explain THIS?

All our science tells us Sexy Boss and Cute Girl Next Door cannot exist simultaneously in one woman…but how do you explain THIS?

And if that doesn’t happen, remember that Daniels played the voice of K.I.T.T. on Knight Rider. Hopefully he and Rider Strong will team up for a show I just made up called — wait for it — Knight Rider Strong. I would watch Knight Rider Strong.

The Matthews

How about Cory’s parents? They — specifically his dad played by William Russ — were always the sensible bedrock supporting Cory’s neuroses (when Topanga alone wasn’t enough). Will we be seeing them play the part of grandparents to the Matthews-Lawrence household?

Where we’ll find them on Girl Meets World

Our guess is that William Russ will be back, but he’ll be reprising his role from American History X, which is to say, “uncomfortably racist.” I’m not going to link the video here because it makes me sad. Just know that Cory and Topanga will likely have to keep their daughter away from “crazy grandpa who has some 19th-century views on things.”

To recap: Racism=Bad Topanga=Perfect

To recap:
Racism = Bad
Topanga = Perfect

Morgan Matthews

I’d like to know if we’ll see an appearance from Morgan. Y’see, Cory and Eric had an adorable little sister in the beginning of the show. Then she disappeared for awhile. Then she came back, played by a different actress, and instead of cute and “awww!”-worthy like she originally was, she was all snarky and sarcastic (“But Brian, aren’t you snarky and sarcastic?” “OHHHHH, you’re SOO ASTUTE!”).

She grew up lovely, but she's not Danielle Fishel, so: nope! Not going to show her to you. Have some voguing Fishel instead.

We’re sure she grew up lovely, but she’s not Danielle Fishel, so: nope! Have a picture of Fishel at her most adorable instead.

Where we’ll find her on Girl Meets World

Probably played by Sarah Chalke or something. (Nine seasons of rocking Scrubs, and you still don’t get that joke unless we say “Replacement Becky.” You’re a bad person.)

And the Rest

Of all the characters who come and go throughout the season, there are three that I hope come back for a visit. The first is Griff, played by current Parks and Rec star Adam Scott, Frankie “The Enforcer” Stechino, played by big, jolly sweetheart Ethan Suplee, who was also in Mallrats  and My Name is Earl, and Joey “The Rat” Epstein, played by Blake Sennett, who not only played Ronnie Pinsky on Salute Your Shorts, but who’s also the lead guitarist with in Rilo Kiley, alongside fellow child star Jenny Lewis, who was the female lead in The Wizard, where she starred opposite Ben Savage’s older brother Fred, who one time ate lunch with Kevin Bacon!

Oddly enough, as that run-on sentence illustrates, these side characters have since become the most interesting and successful alums of this show.

Where we’ll find them on Girl Meets World

Heavens, probably nowhere. Lord knows they’re busy enough.

Also, if you’ll indulge me, late in the show’s run one of Eric’s roommates was a character named Rachel McGuire. I honestly don’t remember a thing about her personality, but I hope she comes back. Because Maitland Ward – who played her – looks like this now.

Okay, this ONE time, for illustrative purposes, we'll show you a non-Topanga woman.

Okay, this ONE time, for illustrative purposes, we’ll show you a non-Topanga woman.

Where we’ll find her on Girl Meets World

Somewhere! Anywhere! Please!

No matter where these characters end up, this is going to be an interesting show to watch. That’s because, to my knowledge, sequels aren’t a terribly common thing in television. But you can bet that somewhere, some TV exec with an Excel spreadsheet in front of him is going to connect the dots between our current love of nostalgia (as Family Guy and Robot Chicken have taught us, the best way to get someone to laugh is by showing them anything from 1992) and the fact that they can probably get Bronson Pinchot for next to nothing to reprise the role of Balki Bartokomous.

So tune in for a potentially game-changing TV show. You’ll get some memorable characters. And of course, more Danielle Fishel.

Take us home, Topanga.

Take us home, Topanga.

The future is all cicadas. Even in your fricking breakfast cereal.

The future is all cicadas. Even in your fricking breakfast cereal.

Brian Cullen really, really enjoys robots but doesn’t understand how they work. He also enjoys drinking beers, and has a pretty solid understanding of how that works. You can read about his musings about both on Twitter @BucketCullen.

The only thing more colorful than the cocktails are the capes

The only thing more colorful than the cocktails are the capes

Brian previously used the past to predict the future in The Terrifying Future! Part 1. He also debauched your childhood memories when he taught you how to Party like a Has-Bro.

More from Brian Cullen

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