September 24, 1993 – The Sitcom Boy Meets World Premieres on ABC
“There’s no gravity in space, Mr. Matthews, therefore astronauts ‘suck up.’ Learn from them.”
On September 24, 1993, the live-action sitcom series Boy Meets World premiered on ABC. The series centered around the life of teenager Corey Matthews, from his early days in sixth grade to his marriage to childhood sweetheart Topanga Lawrence. The series became a staple of ABC’s TGIF programming block lineup, and was nominated for several awards during its run. In 2014, a sequel series that featured several of the original characters premiered on the Disney Channel, known as Girl Meets World. The series eventually ran for 158 episodes in seven seasons. It was created by Michael Jacobs and April Kelly, and starred Ben Savage as Corey Matthews, William Daniels as Mr. Feeny, Rider Strong as Shawn Hunter, Danielle Fishel as Topanga Lawrence, Will Friedle as Eric Matthews, William Russ as Alan Matthews, Betsy Randle as Amy Matthews, and Tony Quinn as Jonathan Turner. Trina McGee-Davis would join in season five as Angela Moore, as would Matthew Lawrence as Jack Hunter. Maitland Ward would join the cast in season six as Rachel McGuire.
The pilot episode begins in the cafeteria, where teacher Mr. Feeny finds Corey Matthews getting a candy bar from the vending machine so early in the morning. After exchanging some barbs, Corey sits with his friend Shawn, who warns him that Mr. Feeny will make his whole sixth grade miserable. In class, they act out Romeo and Juliet, but Corey is listening to a baseball game secretly instead of paying attention. Mr. Feeny finds out and confiscates it, and tries to explain the true tragedy of the play. Corey, however, doesn’t understand, and is awarded detention for his insolence. After school, Corey’s brother Eric announces that he’s going on a date on Friday, which means that he won’t go to the baseball game with Corey. Corey is disappointed, and when he goes to tell his dad, he finds that Mr. Feeny, who happens to be his next door neighbor, has already informed his parents about Corey’s detention on Friday. When Corey complains about the game, his parents are happy that Eric is going on a date, which depresses Corey further.
Corey confides in his friends his troubles at home, and how he finds himself now an “orphan.”
At school the next day, Corey tries to come up with a plan to skip detention to score tickets to the game, and announces that he is now an orphan. That night, he decides to sleep in his treehouse, which gives him a good view of Mr. Feeny’s dining room. He notices that the table is set nicely, but after a phone call, he puts away the other place setting and eats by himself. The next morning, Corey sneaks back in the house to get some clothes, and his mother asks if he still feels abandoned. She explains that “people grow up and priorities change,” and no one is the bad guy in any situation. In detention, Corey tries to talk to Mr. Feeny, but Mr. Feeny ignores him. Corey points out that love leads to nowhere, as love has turned his family against him, and love left Mr. Feeny lonely. Mr. Feeny is frustrated, thinking that Corey hasn’t learned anything from him this entire year, and tries to teach him something that afternoon. He explains that the Matthews family derives its strength from being a family, and that there is nothing higher than achieving love. He then lets a stunned Corey go. Corey heads home and runs into his dad, who is glad his son is back. That evening, Eric comes home, and relates that his date when horribly, as he didn’t know what to do. Corey says that his brother is too cool for a girl, and convinces Eric to ask the girl out again, as “love is worth it.”