By Tara Moore
When Entertainment Weekly broke the news that the Boy Meets World spinoff Girl Meets World selected its leading (little) lady, the world went crazy. “Meet Cory and Topanga’s Daughter!” “The search is over.”
Everyone was mad with nostalgia and erratic excitement over the news that 11-yr old Rowan Blanchard (Spy Kids: All the Time in the World 4D and The Back-Up Plan) would be playing Riley Matthews, a little Cory (Ben Savage) and Topanga (Danielle Fishel) hybrid. I for one have not seen a Spy Kids film, like, ever, and I honestly don’t remember seeing Blanchard in The Back-Up Plan (perhaps because the movie wasn’t that exciting), but that was part of the allure of the original series and their average cast. With the exception of Mr. Feeny who we see ever so often on other shows (earlier this season on Grey’s Anatomy, for instance), the gang of Boy Meets World was synonymous with the show and almost never to be seen anywhere else in show biz—at least nowhere that matters to us right now.
The mystery that surrounds the spinoff is slowly but surely dissipating as we all eagerly flock to the Internets to find out more about who will be returning, and what stage of development they’re in to when the pilot will air on the Disney Channel. But is all the early hype really worth it?
Though we’ve all been craving a comeback, today’s preteen generation is so far ahead socially compared to where we all were 10 years ago that it’s hard to imagine a show on the Disney Channel doing justice to the realities of kids and the hardships they face and lessons they learn on their own and from the few adults that hold weight in their lives. Not to mention, there’s an unspoken truth about Disney Channel shows; everything is so over-acted it’s hard to take any characters seriously, as a preteen or otherwise.
That said, a word of caution to the returning alumni and little Riley Matthews: be natural.
Creator Michael Jacobs knew what he was doing with the original, so let’s see how he handles the very late spinoff making an appearance in the 21st century. Maybe, just maybe, there are a few life lessons on adolescence left to be uncovered.
Here’s a clip from the original great: