Girl Meets World Top 40 Ranked and Reviewed Part 2


35. Girl meets Monster Summary

In this episode, Topanga and Riley butt heads.

References

When Riley says, but I'm Riley, that references her mom's line, "but I'm Topanga," from season five. When Maya says "see ya" to Riley in the halls after Riley asks for her help with Topanga, that references Eric's friend Jason from Boy Meets World seasons 1 and 2. When Topanga asks Riley if cutting out is the first adult decision she wants to make, that is a direct reference to Alan asking Cory if driving to an R-rated movie was the first adult thing he wanted to do. This episode parallels Cory getting a license in season four of BMW. This episode and its BMW counterpart are episodes where the parent and kid are at odds over freedoms.

Review

Topanga co-wrote this episode, and I really wish she had co-written more. Because this episode actually showed Riley making a mistake and learning from it. It was a realistic premise of Riley just being a kid getting in way over her head and bumping heads with her parents. She seemed like a real kid with genuine motivation. She wanted to do something fun with her friends, and her parents wanted her to take care of her responsibilities.

I also enjoyed seeing the battle of Topanga and Riley. Riley approached Topanga with the kind of arrogance and disrespect only your own daughter could produce. However, even though Riley was in the wrong, I respected it. She is a kid testing her boundaries and trying to find herself. Most kids are going to break the rules every now and then. Up until now, Riley has been a goody-two-shoes, but here she shows she is not perfect. She talks back to her mom. She does not handle her responsibilities, and she gets in trouble all on her own without some bad influence making her do it. This problem was all Riley, and it was compelling. I also like that Riley ran away to Maya. Because Cory and Topanga laid down the law and said, we gave you everything you have that entitled us to respect, and when we tell you to do something, do it. Riley being a stubborn teenager, said, I will forgo it all and ran away to Maya's.

I also thought they did a great job with Auggie. Every sibling knows when the other sibling messes up, that is when you are on your best behavior. Auggie played that role hilariously. I also think this episode did a better job than the Boy Meets World counterpart in establishing who was in the wrong. Riley was wrong. Her mom asked for her help, and she knew, and she ignored her. Also, Riley could have avoided all this by helping her mom and then watching the recording afterward or even watching live afterward and just skipping the rewatch because they have already seen those last four episodes.

I think my two and a half negatives for this episode are that Katy and Shawn should have been in it. They did not have to figure everything out for Riley, but Shawn especially knows a thing or two about running away. It would have been nice to see him guide Riley like judge Lamb guided Cory to reconciling with his dad when even his friends could not. Also, I do not think Topanga had anything to apologize for Riley was in the wrong. She disobeyed Topanga, and she clearly needed a reality check, which brings me to my last point.

They told Riley she was a good kid multiple times, and it was annoying. It felt heavy-handed, like the audience would forget she was a good kid because she had a spat with her mom. Also, it is precisely that kind of reinforcement that caused Riley to be entitled. She asked where my reward for being a good person was as if being a "good kid" entitled her to special privileges. That attitude can only be drawn back to Cory and Topanga's constant feedback that Riley is a good kid. Her head was too big, and she thought she was above reproach because she was a good kid. I am glad Topanga and Cory straightened her out.

Grade B+

Streaming Assignments


The homework is the BMW episode that I think shares a similar theme to this Girl Meets World episode. The extra credit is where you can find all the smaller references Girl Meets World made to Boy Meets World.

Homework Wheels season four. Extra credit season1 What a Wonderful Night, Eskimo season 5

34. Girl Meets Sweet 16 Summary

In this episode, Riley wanted to have a sweet 16, so Cory tells the class to project to their junior year and report what they learned what has changed. References

Maya asks, what if I go to Europe and take a year off. This is a reference to Shawn, who wanted to take a year off and go to Europe. Riley saying Topanga did not go to Yale for Cory directly references their graduation episode where she decided to stay with Cory. Topanga Saying I want a do-over refers to Eric asking for a do-over after quitting his dad's store to be a model. Cory giving the kids and assignments to project into the future is straight out of Feeny's playbook. Feeny gave Cory the assignment in the Boy Meets World season one Preunion episode. Lastly, when Topanga gets a job opportunity in London, that references Topnaga's long-running Boy Meets World storyline of almost leaving. She moved to Pittsburgh in season four. She almost went to Yale in season 5, and She left Pennbrook to go to New York in Season 7. Review

I don't think this is the peak of entertainment, but I like how this episode was built. The episode seemed silly at first but switched up. The problem started very simple Riley wants a sweet 16 even though they are only freshmen. However, after Cory gave them the assignment to project to their futures, things got complicated. It was revealed that Riley has more faith in Maya than in her relationship with Lucas. Lucas took this in stride, but in general, he should be worried they are barely together in any way; ever since he chose her, they have not done anything as boyfriend and girlfriend. In fact, they have constantly explained that Riley and Lucas do not compare to Riley and Maya, and I feel like Lucas's character has struggled because of that, and opportunities for storylines between him and Riley have been missed. I do not know why the show has no problem showing Smackle and Farkle as a couple but restricts Riley and Lucas so much. Speaking of Smackle and Farkle, they had the best storyline in the show. Farkle stepping aside for Lucas seemed stupid to me at first. However, the idea that the constant jokes by Smackle made him insecure, and so Lucas showed him what everyone else already knew, which is that Smackle only has eyes for him, was very interesting.

I was also interested to learn Smackle intentionally flirted with Lucas to make Farkle jealous because she was insecure. Another thing I did not see coming was Riley and Maya's quest to grow up turning into wondering if they would all be together after high school. I thought it was funny that Riley told them to all stop and stay where they were cause she sounded just like her father, Cory, who always asked them to stop growing. It showed Riley finally understood the gravity of childhood and appreciated that it would not last forever. She matured.

However, just when we leave the classroom and we learned the value of our relationships and the value of being safely protected together in high school, the ground shakes, and plot lighting strikes as a tearful Auggie and Topanga reveal she is getting a promotion in London. Boom, this could be the end of everything, and nobody saw it coming leaving us on the biggest cliffhanger of the series.

Grade A-

Streaming Assignments

The homework is the BMW episode that I think shares a similar theme to this Girl Meets World episode. The extra credit is where you can find all the smaller references Girl Meets World made to Boy Meets World. Homework Boy Meets World Season 5 Things Change Extra Credit BMW Season 1 Class Preuion, BMW Season 4 Long Walk To Pittsburgh, BMW Season 7 Brave New World Part 1, BMW Season 3 He Said She Said, Boy, Meets World, BMW Season 1 Model Family 33. Girl Meets Rah Rah Summary

In this episode, Riley tries out for the cheerleading team. References

There are two references in this episode. The first is when Zay yells out Rachel, referencing Eric doing the same thing with Rachel in Boy Meets World. Also, this whole episode is the cheerleading version of when Cory tried to join the basketball team. Speaking of Cory, even though he and Topanga were not cheerleaders, Riley's grandma Amy was a cheerleader. I like that this episode continues the thread of Riley wanting to be a cheerleader from last season. Review

I like that everyone tells Riley she should not try out in this episode, but she does not let it stop her. It shows off one of her best traits: her determination when she believes in something. I also enjoyed that this episode made sure to support Riley's pursuit of being an athlete without trivializing athleticism and the work it takes to be one of the girls who made the squad.

This episode teaches a very important lesson. I love the way Cory put it; if you only try 9,000 times, you might not achieve your goal. You have to be relentless. I think everyone can take this and apply it to their life sports related or not. I feel like this actually applies most to artists. You cannot let other people stop you from doing something. You have to be relentless to achieve your goals because you could stop yourself just short of making it.


I like the Cory part in this episode as well. He has to strike a balance between Teacher and Parent. As a parent, he wants to protect Riley from heartbreak, but he wants to push her to realize her potential as a teacher. Also, I thought Edison was a great school lesson comparison for this episode. He did not get the lightbulb on his first try. He had to fail over and over again first. I think this episode teaches a lesson to people in power (teachers, coaches, etc.) as well. Cory says the teachers and people in power positions should be helping you reach your fullest potential and not limiting it, and that is a word. Ultimately I like this episode. It is an entertaining watch with a great lesson, and I think it is either better or on par with its Boy Meets world predecessor. Grade A-

Streaming Assignments


The homework is the BMW episode that I think shares a similar theme to this Girl Meets World episode. The extra credit is where you can find all the smaller references Girl Meets World made to Boy Meets World. Homework BMW B team of life season 1 Extra credit BMW Bee true season 6, Teachers bet season 1 32. Girl Meets Demolition Summary

In this episode, the girls are ripped off by a scam artist. References


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There was only one reference in the entire episode: Riley is gullible, just like Cory and Eric were in Boy Meets World. Review

I like This episode. It is funny at the beginning showing Cory and Riley just totally utterly duped. However, I like that the episode balances that with Riley coming up with the scheme to show that while she can be naive, she isn't a moron. I also like Riley coming up with the plan because it shows that Riley is capable. She was able to save herself in the end. I also think the lesson or lessons were poignant. The first lesson is that what comes around goes around. Riley conned Aubrey just like she conned Riley and her dad. People like Aubrey, who so easily hurt others, should expect that same hurt right back.

The second lesson is that the ends do not always justify the means. Aubrey was ripping everyone off and telling herself that it would all be okay because she would own the shop one day and she could do things her way. However, her parents were going to sell the place without a second thought. So she was doing all that dirt for nothing. She did not mean anything to her parents. This is an important lesson do not sacrifice your integrity to achieve your goal because the ends do not justify the means.

Lastly, Girl Meets World taught that it is important to have good influences. Aubrey did not have a good influence, which led her to forge the wrong path, which stifled her. This is a good lesson, but this lesson also holds some of my problems with the episode. I like Topanga trying to get Aubrey to consider if this is whom she wants to be. However, the way they do it makes it seem like Topanga rides in on a moral high horse and looks down on Aubrey. Also, they remind us the Riley is a good influence on Maya, but I do not like the undertone of this message.

They say Maya will turn out well because Maya has a good influence in Riley. However, Maya also has a mother, and Katy is a good, hard-working woman. Why can't she be a good influence on Maya? Why is Maya's saving grace Riley a 13-year-old kid?

I feel like they went too far. In Boy meets world, they had a similar trope with Cory and Shawn. The difference was that Chet was a bad influence on Shawn, unlike Katy Hart and Shawn was way more troubled than Maya. Maya is not all that bad. The worse thing she has done up to this point is accidentally set off the fire alarm. Why does she need to be saved by Riley? I just think this episode was running with some narratives that are unearned up to this point. I love the Disney Chanel crossovers; this episode of Aubrey from Jessie was great. I wish they would have kept her as a recurring character as she worked with Topanga to become a lawyer. That would have been interesting. I always love the mother from Sister Sister Ms. Ran; she is only in excellent episodes.

Grade A-

Streaming Assignments


The homework is the BMW episode that I think shares a similar theme to this Girl Meets World episode. The extra credit is where you can find all the smaller references Girl Meets World made to Boy Meets World. Homework BMW Easy Street Season 4, Extra Credit BMW Model Family Season 1, BMW You can Go Home Again Season 4 31. Girl Meets Maya's Mother Summary

In this episode, Riley wonders what she is good at, and Maya gets her art recognized by the school. The kids have a career day, and Maya's mom comes late, leading to an awkward exchange. Riley schemes to bring Maya and her mother closer together. References


A lot of callbacks in this episode, the biggest one being back to season two of Boy Meets World when Cory wondered what he was good at and thought his parents were boring. Also, just like this episode was used to introduce Maya's mom and their strained relationship, career(BMW S2) day was used to introduced Shawn's father and their relationship. Onto the smaller callbacks. Farkles bathing suit is a callback to Minkus bathing suit in season 1. Auggie Speaking French is a reference to Shawn randomly knowing French in season 3. Cory loving mashed potatoes refers to season 4, where Cory loves the lunch lady Brenda's mashed potatoes. Riley not knowing what she is good at is something Cory questioned many times in the series. Maya's being a shy artist is similar to Shawn, who never wanted to share his poems, and Cory constantly pushing him to do so. Competition of A's is right from season 5 of Boy Meets World, where Minkus and Topanga compared A's, and Topanga made Feeny give her another A to beat Minkus. Riley trying to fix an unfixable problem is just like Cory trying to fix Topanga's parents getting divorced in season 7. Riley's face-to-face with Maya's mom is reminiscent is of when Cory talks to Shawn's dad in the diner in Season 3 and begs him to come back to Shawn cause Shawn needs him. Also, Auggie being good at opera randomly references Eric being secretly musically talented, like when he played the guitar really well in season 2 and then said, Nah, decided not to pursue music.

Review

I enjoyed this episode. I like that Riley like her father before she realized that she had a talent for being there for her friends. Also, I appreciate that she gained more admiration for her parents based on how they helped her friend, just like Cory did when Amy and Alan helped Shawn. I also like the complexity of Maya and her mother. Her mom loves her, but she is insecure. She is not some villain. Chet was always a complex villain. I do not think Maya's mom is a villain, though, and I like that she explains her reasoning for being who she is, and it makes sense. She has to work, and Maya knows what it is. Also, she does not want to embarrass Maya.

Also, I like that Riley tried to and failed to solve this problem. Riley's Failure showed the problem of Katy not showing up for Maya is more worthwhile and not easily solved. Also, I love that Minkus is Farkle's dad. This episode was almost perfect could have been a tiny bit more dramatic. I know Maya expects her mom to be this way, but it would be nice to see her mother's absence affecting her. I would like to see a moment of her dropping the front in private. Because Maya just acting as if she does not care all the time without breaking it hurts the importance of the conflict a little. Nevertheless, I had no other complaints. Grade A-

Streaming Assignments

The homework is the BMW episode that I think shares a similar theme to this Girl Meets World episode. The extra credit is where you can find all the smaller references Girl Meets World made to Boy Meets World. Homework Career Day season 2 Extra credit Kid gloves season 1, What I meant to say season 3, Fishing for Virna season 4, Better than the average Cory season 6, Poetic License: an ode to Holden Caufield season 6, Graduation season 5, For the Love of Apartments season 7, I Never Sang For My Legal Guardian season 3, Band on the Run season 2

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