Thursday, September 3, 2015

Girl Meets Season 1 At a Glance

Pssssst. Hey guys. It's me Christian. Just me this time. Hi! We don't need Sean for THIS ONE. This is just about you and me. 

Now, that all of Season 1 is finally reviewed I wanted to have a place with all my episode grades and MVPs altogether in a list. So, here it is:

  1. "Girl Meets World": C (MVP: Ben Savage)
  2. "Girl Meets Boy": C+ (MVP: Sabrina Carpenter)
  3. "Girl Meets Sneak Attack": C+ (MVP: Olivia Stuck)
  4. "Girl Meets Father": D+ (MVP: Peyton Meyer)
  5. "Girl Meets Truth": B+ (MVP: Ben Savage)
  6. "Girl Meets Popular": C+ (MVP: Sabrina Carpenter )
  7. "Girl Meets Maya's Mother": A- (MVP: Lee Norris) [I find my MVP choice on this one suspect]
  8. "Girl Meets Smackle": B (MVP: Rowan Blanchard)
  9. "Girl Meets 1961": D (MVP: Sabrina Carpenter)
  10. "Girl Meets Crazy Hat": D+ (MVP: Danielle Fishel)
  11. "Girl Meets World: of Terror": C- (MVP: Rowan Blanchard)
  12. "Girl Meets the Forgotten": B (MVP: Sabrina Carpenter)
  13. "Girl Meets Flaws": C (MVP: Ben Savage)
  14. "Girl Meets Friendship": F (MVP: Danielle Fishel)
  15. "Girl Meets Brother": A- (MVP: Rowan Blanchard) [Wow, that seems an exceptionally high grade.... I should rewatch this one, maybe....]
  16. "Girl Meets Home for the Holidays": B+ (MVP: Rider Strong)
  17. "Girl Meets Game Night": B (MVP: Ben Savage)
  18. "Girl Meets Master Plan": A (MVP: Rider Strong)
  19. "Girl Meets Farkle's Choice: C- (MVP: Corey Fogelmanis)
  20. "Girl Meets First Date": B (MVP: Rowan Blanchard)
  21. "Girl Meets Demolition": B+ (MVP: Danielle Fishel)
  22. "Girl Meets Fish": F (MVP: Rowan Blachard, awarded under duress)
Top episodes by grade:
  1. "Girl Meets Master Plan": A
  2. "Girl Meets Maya's Mother": A-
  3. "Girl Meets Brother": A-
  4. "Girl Meets Home for the Holidays": B+ (I was way too lenient on this one)
  5. "Girl Meets Truth": B+
  6. "Girl Meets Demolition": B+
Worst episodes by grade:
  1. "Girl Meets Fish": F
  2. "Girl Meets Friendship": F
  3. "Girl Meets 1961": D
  4. "Girl Meets Crazy Hat": D+
  5. "Girl Meets Father": D+
MVP Count:
  1. Rowan Blanchard: 5
  2. Sabrina Carpenter: 4
  3. Ben Savage: 4
  4. Danielle Fishel: 3
  5. Rider Strong: 2
  6. Peyton Meyer: 1
  7. Corey Fogelmanis: 1
  8. Olivia Stuck: 1
  9. Lee Norris: 1


  1. Awesome, glad you made this point! Haven't tallied it or anything, but I suspect that Rowan Blanchard is also leading for season 2 so far.

    "Girl Meets Brother" does seem a little high, but I guess it was one of their better non-vet, non-Katy episodes from the season. And wow, you actually gave Peyton Meyer an MVP.

    1. Girl Meets Brother seems VERY high. Christles might need to revisit that one, especially since it had Randi Barnes writing it.

    2. Randi Barnes cowrote it with three others. Her stink got overpowered clearly.

    3. I thought the b+ was suspect until I looked up the episode order. The two episodes before brother? Girl meets flaws and even worse the not even canon in my opinion girl meets friendship ( the one where Lucas legit comes in on a white horse??) I'm sure that anything looked like gold compared to those two and frankly Christian probably just needed a win to keep him from giving up the blog all together

    4. Actually, I rewatched it, and I stand by my grade. "Girl Meets Brother" is actually really good for the most part. Maybe B+ would have been truer than A-, but then I look at the ones that did get a B+ like "Truth" and "Home for the Holidays" and it's definitely better.

  2. Rowan Blanchard leading the way with 5 MVPs, even if the last one was given just as an aside. For as much as we harp on the character Riley, Rowan has been doing a damn fine job playing her.

    Also, this kind of gives credence to what I said coming out of S1. When this show is good, its great. When its bad, tho, it's god awful. Yet, I think its finding some consistency here recently.

    1. I think it goes back to Cory's classroom more than anything else. In Season One...I don't think there was a single classroom scene I enjoyed.

      I think there's some room to discuss what we would have changed if we had had the chance to work on the show?

      Personally, I would have talked Michael Jacobs into having Cory be the English teacher. Moralistic lessons from books instead of an incoherent, jumping around the timeline history teacher doesn't seem as in-your-face.

    2. Cryptid, while I agree with you that Cory teaching English might have made some of the classroom lessons make more sense, I'm thinking that making him a history teacher was a nod to him now taking on the role of Feeny.

      In elementary school Feeny taught them everything, in high school he was their history teacher, so I guess it seemed natural for Cory to do the same thing.

      I'm wondering if Cory will teach them in high school or become their principal. I'm sure Turner will somehow make that happen. At least they will not have to make up something totally unbelievable for that to happen.

    3. Fair warning, it got rabbit-holey. Sorry Christian and Sean.

      Michael Jacobs has confirmed that Teacher Cory is here to stay. And Zay is going to be Main Cast next year. Word that made Morgan Matthews get grounded for two months.

      I love history and I love English, but I have to say some of Cory's teachings are actually inaccurate. Take "Sneak Attack." While the American public had no idea that the Japanese were planning an attack, President Franklin D. Roosevelt had increased the size of the military dramatically during the 1930s and 1940. He was sneaking weapons and supplies to the Allies and American men were volunteering to serve in the British and possibly Canadian forces.

      Moving on, I think there were a lot of opportunities with an English class instead of a History class. Turner, for his part, taught English and went out of his way to try to get the class engaged. When the kids read "Pygmallion," Turner pleaded "C'mon guys. How you look, how you speak, the clothes you wear, it affects the way people think about you. You can understand that right?"
      So why not give us a few really good books and have Cory try to get the kids to relate to them? Have the class read, oh say, "The Outsiders" and give us a plot where Riley encourages Maya to "stay gold." Or, possibly, Riley cries in class when they get to the end and her classmates laugh at her. Heck, I only skimmed that book in college and the ending still gave me a lump in my throat.
      Maya's trouble in school? Give an episode where she gives a report on an obviously easier book than her peers.
      There's plenty to do with an English teacher. Heck I think there's more to do with an English teacher than a History teacher.

    4. Cryptid456- I don't think "Rabbit-holey" applies here. As long as you are talking about season 1/the show in general, I think you're good. This isn't a post focused on one episode or character. Of course, I could be wrong on that.

    5. I just think you need to stop using the term 'rabbit-hole" so much. It's like a couple times a day. I used it once, and it's like you think you need to include it in every post now. And you often warn us that you're about to get rabbit-holey and then you do it anyway. If you suspect it's going to be a problem, why would you then proceed to do it?

      This particular post is fine. I don't mean to keep getting on your case, but, I dunno man, I just think maybe you need to curb your enthusiasm a touch. Don't mean any offense.

    6. I happen to like the term "rabbit hole" but if you think I should stop, I will.

  3. I liked 1961, but don't seem to have a lot of company with that.

    Fish may have ruined film noir for me.

    1. 1961 is...worse for long-time fans of the franchise because it hurts the timeline of the characters, which to be fair, was never great to begin with. The whole "our great-grandparents all knew each other" is cliched, and while I don't necessarily find that a bad thing, I do here. And I actually don't mind butterfly effect coincidences--but to this degree, it's just odd. I wouldn't have minded smaller connections between two characters--say, Grandpa Alan Matthews saving Grandpa First-Name Minkus from drowning when they were in the Navy together. But all four kids, that's too big a stretch. Maybe if each great-grandparent had met Great-grandpa Ginsburg at three different times.

      More to the point, it stresses the timeline dramatically. In the original incarnation of "Boy Meets World," as you are going to see my dear Milestones, Topanga's parents, parents not grandparents, were lapsed hippies. Her father was a hippie through and through--he made stringed instruments, was a dedicated vegetarian, and named his first daughter, who you'll never actually meet, Nebula Stopthewar Lawerence. And Vietnam was over far before Topanga's sister was said to be born.

      With 1961, introducing Riley's maternal great-grandmother as a non-hippie, the timeline is thrown into turmoil. And it was never that great in the first place--mostly, usual long-running sitcom woes, but with as focused as BMW is about continuity, it adds up.

      More to the point, Riley has a maternal great-aunt that had to have already been born by this point in the timeline. Grandma Rhiannon might not have been born yet, but Great-Aunt Prudence was considerably older than her sister.

      So yeah...1961, not a fan of in execution. Though it was, I believe, Rider Strong's first directed episode, so that's nice.

      And I never actually saw "Fish." The promos were terrifying. Not to toot my own horn, but that episode was the first one I started commenting on, though, and I noted ways you could have the same premise--Auggie killing the class fish--but actually have a good episode--Auggie kills his /kindergarten/ class fish and Riley takes the blame for it to protect him.

    2. Hey Cryptid-so I'm only two episodes into the box set I thought was going to swallow my Labour Day weekend whole. Now thinking I may ease into it more slowly, at least until the show finds sure footing, as trustworthy sources say it will. Becoming BMW-conversant may undermine my affection for 1961.

    3. Oh, yes. I would definitely recommend a nice slow pace, one or two episodes a night. Let Michael Jacobs' masterpiece grow on you slowly. "Boy Meets World" is like...well, I'm no drinking man, so I can't say it's like a fine wine. It's like a garden. Tend to it attentively but give it a little space and watch it grow.

      Ah, to be young again and watching the series for the first time. After you finish it, then I suggest marathon watching it.

    4. Just to be clear, I'm way beyond young. Milestones1958 isn't just a music reference.

    5. I am also occasionally a drinking man. When you combine that with a reminder of Fish, which I didn’t have your good sense not to watch, you get this:

      I had an odd thing happen about a week ago, after I popped Double Indemnity into my disc player. I started thinking about this redheaded stepchild of a GMW episode. It began in an early scene where there is an actual bowl of goldfish—just a bit of set decoration that was suddenly very, very distracting. As this movie, that essentially defined the whole style, progressed, instead of watching and enjoying, I kept noting elements of noir absent from an episode that seemed to want to evoke noir, and getting annoyed all over again.

      And it got worse.

      The Riley-Maya friendship is the true “love story” of GMW. I think I have said before that’s what all the changing of dance partners followed by Maya grabbing Riley meant near the end of Semi-Formal. (I’m sure elsewhere on Disney others with the same mandate were content to let their shows become some band or singer’s music video for three minutes or so, not GMW). The same thing is often said about the friendship between the Walter Neff and Barton Keyes characters in Double Indemnity. That resemblance hadn’t hit me before.

      So it dawned on me that Fish could have just been a parody of this movie. I could see it, at least in the broad stokes: Maya, a co-conspirator in some goldfish scam, privately recording her confession to Riley over flashbacks, Riley trying to solve the case but unable because she was “too close.” I could imagine the great final bit of dialogue played out with the two of them, sans any mortal gunshot wound, and it suddenly seemed like a waste that they didn’t do something like that.

      That’s as fanficy as I tend to get, thinking how great stuff might have been adapted for GWM purposes. Anything arguably original is in small detail. The bit of business at the end Rules with Riley outside the classroom door and Maya knowing she’s there will kill me every time I watch it, and I wish they had gone back to it and stayed there over the credits. Whenever Maya is seized by Josh-mania, I think they should have given Riley a line reminding Maya that she has won an award for coolness.
      But, I don’t have your aptitude for it. I liked your ideas better than what the episode gave us.

      Anyway, the point is, I fear every film noir I watch now, and I have a considerable number of them in my collection, will get me thinking about Fish. I don’t want to think about Fish.

    6. Comparing Fish to Double Indemnity. That's one hell of a jump, my friend.

    7. milestones1958-Your version of "Girl Meets Fish" is fantastic. I love it. My take on it, is that if you're going to do noir, the standard to beat is "The Dream Sequence Always Rings Twice " from "Moonlighting," or "The Blue Butterfly" from "Castle."

      I'm really, really bad with math and numbers, but is there anyway a 1940s/noir version of "Girl Meets 1961" would have worked? All of the characters being involved in some crazy mystery isn't that much more outlandish than all the characters great-grandparents being in a coffee house one night. Also, I think my version allows for continuity preservation, because you have a wider range of ages. There's a young woman, often a secretary, an older femme fatale, for the men you have a police officer (friend on the force or an enemy), a bartender, a link to the criminal underworld, numerous neighborhood characters, and now I will apologize for falling down the rabbit hole.

    8. pwfan - Fish and Double Indemnity are comparable only to the extent that one tried to look like a noir and the other is, as somebody put it, ground zero for noir. Oh, and there is goldfish bowl in Double Indemnity. The point is the memory of Fish contaminated my most recent viewing of Double Indemnity.

    9. pwfan - yeah, I think we might be on the same page.

      Kit Cosmo - thanks, I'm trying hard to avoid rabbit holes too, my post above notwithstanding. I'm not too bad with math and numbers, but am not yet au fait with the BMW timelines. They were making noirs up until the late 50s. So they could make it fit if they wanted.

    10. Milestones,
      You say that "Fish" taints your view of noir? Well, then the only thing to do is find some new noir to get the taste of "Fish" out of your mouth.
      There's a book series I love called the "Grimnoir Chronicles" that somehow blends noir, diesel-punk, alternate history, and urban fantasy into a fantastic blend.
      Long story short, an ex-con, private detective with the power to manipulate gravity gets swept up in the fight between the Japanese Imperial Empire and an international group of magic-using knights over a Tesla superweapon. There's samurai, ninja, knights, pirates, gangsters, feds, airships, pyrokinesis, zombies, demons, aliens, cryo-kinesis, electro-kinesis, teleportation, dogfights, and noir. And that's just the first book.

    11. milestones1958-There's a podcast that I love call "Black Jack Justice." They are new stories, but set post WWII in the style of the old radio noir detectives. is the source.

    12. Thanks guys, those look interesting. I will have to check them out.

      I watched the Farkle episode again this morning. There will always be stuff the reminds me how sensationally far I am outside the show's intended audience, and also comfortably lap its secondary target. But, otherwise, whether it wants to or not, this show completely has my number.

    13. That's fantastic news, Milestones.

      I was worried about the "I Am Farkle" episode, mostly because "Diagnosis Episodes" in children's television tend to be either really preachy or nauseatingly simplistic. And autism is tricky to explain in the best of circumstances. But I have heard many wonderful things about the episode and I eagerly await it.

      For what it's worth, "Arthur" had a fantastic episode on autism in "When Carl Met George." If anybody has a spare fifteen minutes tonight:

      What's really nice is that Carl was not just a Very Special Episode character, to be used once and then never seen again. He's returned a handful of times as appropriate for a student who is not in the same class as Arthur and George.

    14. Hey milestones, is that episode online at all? Or did you watch it On Demand?

    15. Hi Christian, our version of the Disney Channel launched this week. As part of the roll out, on "Girl Meets World Day," they aired the episode early up here.

    16. I have been able to find Girl Meets I Am Farkle Online, but only the last 3/4 of it (first 6-7 minutes are missing) and with low quality...but if anyones interested, here it is:

    17. Cryptid – thanks for the link. I will give that a look.

      This episode took a second viewing for me. Sometimes I need to recalibrate the receiver in my brain and try again. Eric episodes needed that, so did New Teacher. I will wait until the review is up before I go into any detail about it. But I just might not have been ready the first time.

      I didn’t know what the episode was going to be about and had very little advanced warning we were even getting a new episode.

      I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge that I have previously been moved by GMW for stuff that others have regarded with indifference or annoyance. I have chalked this up to resonance with personal experiences. That explanation won’t hold for this episode. Maybe I just have mushy part of my brain that the show can clobber with giant mallets of saccharine sentimentality anytime it wants.

      That caution made, it must be admitted that on second and now third viewings, some silliness and to be named later stuff apart, the episode owned me.

  4. Of the 20(?) episodes of Season 1, 12 - no less than 12 - over half, you guys - have grades of C+ (average) or lower. Of the remaining 8, 2 have just Bs/B-'s and three manage A-'s or higher.

    I think at this point we can be glad that Season 1 was so relatively short. Season 2, for all the uneven episodes its had (thankfully frontloaded for the most part) has been a vast improvement.

  5. Is that 2nd Girl Meets Brother in Top Episodes supposed to be Girl Meets Truth? Or is that your rewatch grade or something?

    1. HAH! That's what he gets for going in without me.

  6. Not sure Lee Norris should have gotten the MVP for Maya's Mother. I would have thought Cheryl or Rowan. Both were great in that.

    Best prop for season 1 - in Girl Meets the Truth - the book Cory is reading: When Bad Things Happen to Good Chickens. That makes me laugh every time I see it.

    1. Minkus SUCKED in that episode. Christian is a crazy man.

  7. The first trailer for Rowan's DCOM dropped today. Give it a watch here:

    1. Not bad....I doubt it'll be a classic, but it looks pretty good for TV Halloween movie. The big question is, can Rowan play someone who isn't just Mad Scientist Riley?

    2. I have a different question, can Rowan carry this movie by herself? Her titular co-star looks to not be on screen, in person, for the majority of the movie. Can she carry the load?

      Also, how much will they ask us to stretch our disbelief? I'm worried in this regard.

    3. Not to mention, for me personally, I don't think there's a single Halloween special or TV movie I would go out of my way to watch if it isn't October. And that's coming from someone who loves "Monster Hunter International," a book series about a team of mercenaries that collect government bounties on werewolves and zombies.

  8. Hey Christian, Sean, serious question, who's pizza do you like?

    1. I don't understand the question. You mean, like, what brand?

    2. I spent some time working in the pizza industry, so I can say for a fact that Dominos uses the best ingredients. I would say Dominos if it weren't for Pizza Huts flavored crusts. I do love their ranch crust.

    3. Rosati's! They may just be in Chicago. If I'm eating Domino's or Pizza Hut it must be some sort of emergency or hostage crisis.

    4. Don't wanna breathe any of that poor people air

    5. Christian's hardly a Jack in this case Sean. Chicago-ans are very particular about their pizza. It's a regional pride thing.

    6. Plus Jack wouldn't even *eat* pizza. Not with her 3% body fat.

    7. Well, I said that if you ever watch Star vs. The Forces of Evil I would give you some sort of prize, and as it turns out you already do - well it turns out the best I can give you is use promo code 501, 502 and 503 to save $1, $2 and $3 off a 14, 16 and 18 inch pizza from Rosati's offer expires 12/31/15 so...yeah.

    8. WAIT. I'm sorry. What just happened here?!

    9. Let's see...Unknown asked for your favorite pizza.

      Sean praised Domino's, you praised that little Chicago parlor.

      Sean made fun of you for your more regional choice, though I can't fathom why he's surprised.

      I mentioned that Chicago-ans are particular about their pizza, like how everybody south of the Mason-Dixon line is particular about their bar b que meats.

      Unknown brought up a three-month-old deal about you watching "Star vs. the Forces of Evil" and is offering a coupon for your favorite pizza parlor.

      Oh, and then you asked what happened and then I wrote this comment.

  9. BTW here's the link to the new episode

    1. Wow that was quite an episode. Christian, Sean, when do you think you'll be reviewing it?

    2. Probably not until Friday, kids sorry. And for the sake of spoilers, please don't discuss the episode here.

    3. also THANKS A FUCK TON for giving us that link :D

    4. Yes, appreciate the link. I had seen the first 4 minutes and the last 10, but needed the entire episode.

    5. Friday's going to be one to remember.