Episode Title: "Girl Meets Farkle's Choice"
Episode Number: 19
Boy Meets World Episodes Borrowed From: I can't think of anything for the main plot, but the subplot with Topanga and Auggie reminded me a bit of Season 1's "Class Pre-Union" where Morgan had an obnoxious friend with an obnoxious mother, and Amy and Morgan like... taught'em a lesson.
Cory's History Lesson and Relevance: Poor little Canada is our greatest ally, so we best not take them for granted. He's really condescending toward Canada. I guess it's relevant, but I don't necessarily grant his premise.
Let's get some other topics out of the way since... who cares about this episode? It was announced this week that both Trina McGee-Davis (Angela) and Blake Clark (Chet) will be returning to Girl Meets World in Season 2 - joining Will Friedle, Rider Strong, William Daniel, and a cadre of other BMW vets for that season. What do we think of this? I already spoke about my thoughts about the idea of Angela's return in the "Master Plan" review - I'm not against the idea, as long as it's to provide Shawn with closure and not reunite them. Chet, though? Why Chet? Don't get me wrong, I like Chet a lot. Probably my favorite non-main-cast-member BMW character. But the guy's been dead for 15 years. The actor has aged since then. They went to the ghost well once-too-often as it is. I think this is a mistake. But - is it kind of a "Screw it. We want to bring everyone back at least once. And how else do we get Blake Clark on?" situation?
So, yeah, as I mentioned. I don't care about this episode. I expect you didn't either. We're over these kind of early Season 1 shenanigans. With us just having the Shawn episodes, the knowledge that this season's about over, and a more promising Season 2 is just around the corner, an episode like this is a major let down. It's been widely reported that this was an episode written to be aired much earlier, and I expected it to be a little obvious (because on the whole the later episodes have been better) but I didn't expect it to be THIS obvious. Smackle was clearly being introduced for the first time, as others reacted to hearing her name for the first time. And I'm not sure this wasn't supposed to be Ava's introduction as well, as Topanga's initial dialogue about her sure reads like exposition for the audience. That one I'm probably wrong about, since Ava appeared as early as the third episode, and I think I recall Topanga learning of her for the first time. But I bet this was meant to be Ava's second episode then. Either way, if this was meant to be Smackle's intro, this puts it as being made at least before "Girl Meets Popular" - episode 6. Between that, and the lack of Lucas (what is this, like, the 5th one this guy's missed?) it almost felt like... a prequel episode or something.
I don't get why they do this. I mean... I do. They try to do stronger episodes up front when they can to get
audiences hooked, and then show their shittier ones later on hoping the audience is already devoted and will forgive a bad one. But in a lot of cases it really causes continuity issues. Like Smackle, Harley was also not introduced with his intro episode and it was awkward as a result with it not being entirely clear to everyone that this even was Harley Keiner. Smackle wasn't so bad, because you didn't really need this episode to introduce her, but nonetheless....
The episode wasn't good. It wasn't aggressively in-your-face bad, but it wasn't remotely funny (absent tiny moments like Riley's inability to get words right on camera or Cory struggling with a juice box), the plot was very contrived (I didn't buy Riley and Maya's one-eightys about Farkle... what, just because he said sweet things to them? He does that all the time) and it relies on the initial Farkle persona - the aggressively flirtatious one - which I don't care for. We have another celebrity guest star that I wind up just feeling embarrassed for and uncertain why they bothered to bring in (though Jane Lynch is like the first one I'd legitimately buy the audience would recognize) and really it was just a whole lot of nothing.
Last bit - I confess, I didn't consider Canada either when Cory was asking who was America's greatest ally. It seemed to be obviously the UK to me. And like.... are we sure it's not the UK? They're a lot more powerful than Canada, and they're a big part of our link to Europe, which is a pretty important place. Why Canada? Because of the border? Well, then why not Mexico? Because Canada's border is bigger? Is that it? I feel like this episode was written by a Canadian with a chip on their shoulder about America's regard for them. Don't get me wrong - I like Canada lots and I'm willing to hear an argument about why Canada is our most important ally, maybe that's correct. Maybe it is, and I'm just not thinking about it the right way. But Cory just... stated it and it was treated like "Oh, of course! Canada! Why didn't I think of that?" and he never actually really explained why that was so.
Oh, and what was with those two weirdos in the subway? They actually seemed like they might supposed to be rape-y Joey and Frankie analogues, what with the bad grammar New York-y little guy and the eloquent big guy. I don't like them. Don't let them back on. Let them go the way of "The Rebel". Into the dust. Also, was the little guy maybe just a midget and he's too young for us to tell? Farkle dwarfed him. Farkle.
Episode Rating: C-
Episode MVP: No one really blew me away or anything. I guess Corey Fogelmanis had to do all the heavy lifting, and he's never won one of these before, has he? Fine then. Corey Fogelmanis.