Sloppy Joes or chicken pot pie?
Farkle’s (Corey Fogelmanis) dilemma over whether to choose Riley (Rowan Blanchard) or Maya (Sabrina Carpenter) becomes a lunchtime analogy in the pilot episode: Sloppy Joe or chicken pot pie? Turns out, these kids aren’t the first to try to use food to try to solve a romantic dilemma. Shawn (Rider Strong) in “Boy Meets World” likened being torn between a Stacy and a Linda to trying to choose between meatloaf or chicken.
For Season 3 of “Girl Meets World,” the cast recreated, nearly shot for shot, the “Boy Meets World” opening credits that were introduced in Season 5.
The most important high-five ever
In an episode that explicitly flashed back to the “Boy Meets World” moment in question, Maya and Farkle high-fived — and felt nothing, a direct contrast to when young Cory and Topanga high-fived and felt everything.
A meaningful gift from Cory’s father was never brought up again after one episode in Season 1 of “Boy Meets World” — until Season 3 of “Girl Meets World,” when Cory finds them again, in an episode featuring Riley losing something from childhood that was important to her.
In an episode featuring “Boy Meets World” characters digging up what their younger selves buried decades ago, the “Girl Meets World” youngsters keep the tradition going by burying their own mementos.
One of the most iconic lines from “Boy Meets World” is Mr. Feeny telling the kids to “do good,” as opposed to do well. “Don’t you mean do well?” Topanga asks Feeny, just as a new student named Marly asks Cory on “Girl Meets World,” when he uses the same Feeny-ism in his own classroom.
Friends at war
Eric’s return to the “Boy Meets World” universe on “Girl Meets World” is a direct call back to the original series’ episode “Seven the Hard Way,” where he insists he should be called Mr. Squirrels. Not only does his prophetic vision of his own future come true, the episode also features the younger characters in a major fight, with Cory warning them of what could happen if they don’t make up.
Going too far
“Girl Meets True Maya” takes Maya back to her rough upbringing roots and dares her to cross the line back into being a “bad kid,” something Shawn went through multiple times on “Boy Meets World,” particularly in the episode “Wrong Side of the Tracks.”
A push in the right direction
When Riley became too scared to go on a date with Lucas, Maya asked him out, in order to give her best friend a little push of confidence. Shawn did the same for Cory back on “Boy Meets World,” by asking out Topanga.
The Adams family
While Cory, Shawn and the gang went to John Adams High School on “Boy Meets World,” Riley and Maya and “Girl Meets World” friends went to John Quincy Adams Middle School, a nice nod to being the offspring of the original, and then Abigail Adams High School, for the gender-flip nature of the spinoff series.
On “Boy Meets World,” Cory tried to get Shawn’s dad Chet to care more about his son, and on “Girl Meets World,” Riley tries to do the same for Maya. Turns out, in both cases, the kids probably should have cut their hard-working parents some slack.
Mount Sun Lodge
The ski lodge had such a significant role on “Boy Meets World” — Cory kissed another girl and almost ended things with Topanga for good — that “Girl Meets World” staged a full blown reenactment, on-site. This time, it’s Riley who stays up all night talking, which ends up shaking up the show’s central love triangle.
In an episode titled “Girl Meets Boy,” Riley has her first serious talk with crush Lucas (Peyton Meyer), in a direct call back to the episode “Boy Meets Girl” of the original series, where her parents Cory and Topanga also connected for the first time as youngsters.
While “Boy Meets World” did an episode set in the ’50s, where Cory “time-traveled” back in time after an electric shock, meeting alternate versions of his friends, “Girl Meets World” took a slightly different approach, having the young actors play their characters’ grandparents in the ’60s.
Cory, with Shawn’s help, used jelly beans on a scale to try to decide between Topanga and Lauren. Twenty-years later, Lucas, aided by Farkle and Zay, employed the exact same method when trying to decide between Riley and Maya.
When Riley gets invited to a party without her “cool” best friend Maya in “Girl Meets Popular,” it’s a direct callback to the “Boy Meets World” episode “The Uninvited,” when her dad was invited to a party without Shawn. “It’s a geek party!” turns out to be the surprise in both cases, but father and daughter took different lessons from the experience.
Riley and Maya entered high school in the exact same fashion as Cory and Shawn did, and with the exact same confidence. Unfortunately, that deflated just as fast as Cory and Shawn’s did too.
Topanga kissed Cory in the “Boy Meets World” episode “Cory’s Alternative Friends,” leaving him shell-shocked. In the “Girl Meets World” episode “Girl Meets the Truth,” Farkle plants one on Riley (specifically, on her chin), leaving her in an equally gobsmacked state. The show writers would later confirm the similarities between the two scenes were “quite intentional.”
If Al washes a car in six minutes and Fred washes the same car in eight minutes, how long does it take them to wash a car together? Apparently this is a killer math problem, because the gang on “Boy Meets World” had a hell of a time with it, and the “Girl Meets World” friends take quite a detour to avoid answering the exact same question, 20 years later.
Farkle himself is a major callback to “Boy Meets World,” as it was eventually revealed that he is actually the son of Cory and Topanga’s childhood classmate Stuart Minkus. The first hint of Farkle’s parentage came in the Season 1 episode “Girl Meets Father,” when he earned his 700th A grade — one more than his father, and the same number as Topanga, which she used to beat the original Minkus to becoming Valedictorian.
The Couples Game
A game testing couples’ compatibility caused quite the drama on “Boy Meets World,” but the “Girl Meets World” gang didn’t heed Cory’s warnings to stay away from playing such games — and got an equal dose of questions nobody wants to answer.
Mr. Feeny, wedding officiate
Feeny returning to “Girl Meets World” to officiate Shawn’s wedding to Maya’s mother isn’t just a poignant reunion, it’s also a call back to “Boy Meets World,” when a surreal sequence saw Feeny almost officiate a Shawn and Topanga wedding during World War II.