If you had told me two years ago that Boy Meets World would have a spin-off consisting of Cory Matthews (Ben Savage) and Topanga Lawrence (Danielle Fishel) married with two kids (Cory being a teacher and Topanga being the owner of a pudding shop), I would have gone ballistic. I, along with other 20-somethings have dubbed myself as BMW‘s number one fan, and I’m extremely excited for the premiere of BMW‘s spin-off, Girl Meets World. In honor of newly released Girl Meets World, here are 8 lessons that I’ve learned from the seven seasons of Boy Meets World:
- Be unapologetically yourself. In the earlier episodes of BMW, Topanga was that weird girl who would draw hearts on her face and brown-nose her teacher. Over the course of the series, Topanga blossomed into a confident and sexy woman who wasn’t afraid to ask for what she wanted (which explains number 6!). Her curvaceous figure was admired by all teenagers in the 1990’s, and she inspired women to love and embrace their bodies. On the other hand, there was Cory; the awkward, curly-headed 11-year-old boy who blossomed into a mature, sweet and ambitious young man. We followed him on his 7-year adventure as he got into mishaps with his best friend, Shawn Hunter (Rider Strong), put 100% into his relationship with Topanga, and got lectured by teacher/neighbor, Mr. Feeny (William Daniels).
- There’s nothing wrong with women making the first move. Kudos to Topanga setting the bar high for all women when she took Cory by the shoulders and pinned him against the lockers for their first kiss. We shouldn’t have been too surprised by Topanga’s boldness, especially when she proposed to Cory at their high school graduation!
- True friends are a rarity (Shawn and Cory’s bromance was one for the history books). From the first episode to the last, whether it was dealing with Cory and Topanga breaking up or Shawn’s unstable family background, Cory and Shawn always had each other’s backs and would do anything for one another. Even though they seemed like complete opposites, they could always rely on the other to be there.
- Relationships are bound to have their ups and downs. There were a few times during BMW where we weren’t even sure if Corpanga was going to make it. Remember when Topanga moved to Philly with her Aunt? Or when Topanga got accepted into Yale? Or when Cory “accidentally” kissed that girl at the ski cabin? Relationships aren’t supposed to be perfect. Sometimes require effort and compromise, and sometimes they’ll even bring out the worst in you.
- Every family is unique, and you shouldn’t compare yours to others. While Cory’s family may have bordered along the lines of perfect, it’s important to realize that not all families are like the Matthews. For instance, Shawn’s father was an abusive alcoholic who was constantly in and out of his life. In between hanging out at the Matthews’ house, staying with Mr. Turner and reuniting with his half-brother, Jack – Shawn redefined the meaning of family by surrounding himself with the people who mattered most to him. In the words of dear old Mr. Feeny, “You don’t need to be blood to be family.”
- Living on your own may not be that glorious. The day that Topanga and Cory moved into their first apartment together, they discovered that living on their own, without their parent’s support, was not all that glorious. There was an infestation of cockroaches under a pizza box and screaming babies next door; their first apartment was a mess! However, I learned that you’ll need to sacrifice a lot if you want to become independent.
- Forgive people even if they’ve made mistakes. Mr. Plays-With-Squirrels, Eric’s alternate personality, wrote an entire book just to demonstrate the concept “Lose one friend, lose all friends, lose yourself.” It took a lot of courage for the crew to forgive each other for their prank wars, but sometimes we realize that ending a friendship over a silly argument is not worth it!
- Wisdom comes with age. You didn’t think we were going to forget about Mr. Feeny, did you? Mr. Feeny taught us about respect (for ourselves and for others), seizing every opportunity while in the moment (i.e. when he and Cory tested the world’s scariest rollercoaster) and lessons such as today’s generation placing more value on technology than a serious education. Lastly, we’ve come to appreciate Feeny’s final lesson: “Believe in yourself. Dream. Try. Do good.”