Thursday, December 24, 2015

Holiday Cheer

It's that special time of year. Christian has the flu and is begging for death via facebook status and my personal life has become a dumpster fire. 

But we rise above. I sit here now with some microwaved pizza rolls and a vodka red bull with too much vodka, watching a Christmas episode of Scrubs.



Have a good one lads and lasses. I hope Christian doesn't die.

Merry Christmas, all! Today is much less dire health-wise than yesterday, I managed a whole trip to Barnes & Noble to buy a book for my dad and one for me! And now back to bed. 

Want to celebrate the Christmas in true Matthews style? Watch Santa's Little Helper, Santa's Little Helpers, Easy Street, A Very Topanga Christmas, or Girl Meets Home for the Holidays. Some of those are good episodes! I think I liked A Very Topanga Christmas more than Sean did.

You know what else has some good Christmas episodes? The West Wing. I'm just saying. They got some good ones. "Noel" is my favorite. 

Merry Christmas, everyone! Or Happy Hanukkah! Which I think is already over. 

Very Topanga Christmas is probably the least-good Christmas episode. Just make sure you all watch Girl Meets The New Year on New Year's, since, hoo boy, that's just your favorite, innit. 

You think Easy Street is better than A Very Topanga Christmas? That's insane. That's nuts, my friend. 

Shawn bias.

68 comments:

  1. Damn. Sorry to hear about the dumpster fire Sean. You're a good man and you deserve the best.

    And to Christian, I am sorry to hear about your flu. I can say that if you develop a cough, then pineapple juice is an excellent suppressant.

    Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New Years to everybody on this blog.

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  2. Happy Holidays everyone.

    I hope to be back online by the time the next episode airs. The movers are coming for my stuff on the 26th, and they promise to deliver between the 29th and the 11th. I hate moving. I hope you all have a better two weeks than I am likely to have.

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    1. Hope to see you then, 1960. It's looking to be an...interesting episode.

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  3. Easy Street ain't that bad Christian, it's just the last scene in the cold with Shawn and Cory that sucks. The Soupy Sales and Buddy Hackett stuff is awesome

    Merry Christmas everyone! Hope everything goes well for you guys

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    1. I'm also not big on Eric and Lonnie's subplot, but yes, the final scene is the big problem.

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  4. Easy Street is way better than A Very Topanga Christmas!

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    1. What's everyone's beef with A Very Topanga Christmas? There's a lot I like in that episode.

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    2. If I could guess, Christian, I would think it's that Cory's not quite as unsympathetic in that episode as the writers would want the audience to think. He sees Topanga make changes to the traditions he's familiar with. And Cory hates change.

      But to be fair to him, some of those changes are a little...over-the-top. The cider/eggnog debate is barely worth commenting on. The when-we-open-presents-thing is something that should be discussed, but not that bad. The whole let's-go-upstate-and-chop-down-a-tree crosses the line and then skips rope with it.

      That being said, I agree with you, Christian. There is a ton in that episode to like. Cory does learn an important lesson on compromise--the weakness is in "Show, don't Tell," which is an issue hardly unique to that episode. Jack's outsider status is genuinely funny for once, in the "I don't know you well. Thanks for marrying me" Christmas Future. And Shawn and Jack have one of their best sub-plots in the entirety of their relationship, in their attempt to find common ground.

      I went back and read Sean's old review, and found that we agree on the same things.
      http://boymeetsworldreviewed.blogspot.com/2014/08/episode-5x11-very-topanga-christmas.html

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    3. I just rewatched the episode myself, and yeah, I think that review is still accurate. Shawn and Jack knocked it out of the park. Compromise is a great lesson, but it doesn't actually happen. Topanga just... gets her way at the end. She compromises nothing.

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    4. While I agree that Topanga compromises nothing in "AVTC," I think she does come around on compromising. Remember "Home for the Holdidays" has Topanga edgy about Amy judging her for hosting the dinner--and then reveals she actually incorporated all of the old recipes Amy used. The scenes there weren't that great, but they were there.

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    5. I don't dislike AVTC so much as I really like Easy Street.

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    6. Fair enough, slinkhard. My personal favorite of the BMW Christmas specials is probably "Santa's Little Helper" from the first season. I haven't seen "Easy Street" in quite a while; I should re-watch that episode.

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    7. I have to agree with Slinkhard here. MTV2 played all the Christmas episodes back to back a few days ago and I watched them. I found myself liking "Easy Street" more than any other of the episodes. Though perhaps it was because it was more a regular BMW episode set against a Christmas backdrop while the others are very much Christmas episodes and like many holiday episodes of shows they don't always meet the "standards" we expect from the show.

      For instance in AVTC, Topanga is pretty different than she had been written post season 1 and up to that point. While she was always level-headed and not looking to make waves, she acted fairly childish in AVTC, always wanting her way, which is usually Cory's deal. That may be the sort of thing that turns folks off episodes like this, the total departure of a character from their usual self.

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    8. Precisely. Topanga acted far too childish. The set-up itself is fine--butting heads over differences that on the surface are rather benign, while simultaneously being very important to a person's identity.

      The problem is that Topanga initiates the conflict herself. She's not a fraction as sympathetic as she should be. Take the cider/eggnog debate--suppose Topanga was the one coming home from the grocery store and had bought cider instead of eggnog. You can ratchet it up to plain old ignorance of Topanga's part, and keep her sympathetic. The aluminum tree/fresh-cut tree should /never/ have been written. If you keep the differences petty, but establish them as deeply personal, then you have a better Scrooge set-up.

      Are we all just going to write AVTC as shorthand from now on?

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  5. eta and more importantly, Merry Xmas!

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  6. Oooh - Christmas present. We got the first promo for STEM - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6okVQuOc-g

    Looks interesting.

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    1. I suppose "Interesting" is one word you could use. There's another classroom and look, Topanga's in the episode. And judging from how many outfits I saw, this episode takes place over at least four days--that might be a record.

      But it is a pre-Texas episode, so there's that.

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    2. Eh. We'll see. I'm not too excited, truth be told. But maybe the payoff will be great.

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  7. Easy street is way better than A Very Topanga Christmas and that's not because easy street is that amazing

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    1. Really, when you stop to think about it, there's not many Christmas specials that are really that good, of any show.

      Our esteemed administrator Sean has said that his favorite holiday episode of the Feeny-verse is "Turnaround." I agree that it is a solid episode, and I would argue its strength is derived from its plot being solid enough to stand without a holiday backdrop.

      Christian, on the other hand, has mentioned his favorite holiday episode is "Turkey Day." I think that came up when we had that Character Battle from earlier this year. And I agree with him--"Turkey Day" is superb.

      What about you, Mark? What's your favorite holiday episode of the Feeny-verse?

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  8. Hey everybody. Check it out--stills from "Girl Meets Money," which is pre-Texas, as I recall.

    http://www.disneyabcpress.com/disneychannel/shows/girl-meets-world/episodes/girl-meets-money/

    I beat 1960 to the punch. I win.

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    1. Yes you do - here is your internet cookie ��

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    2. Bummer - the cookie emoji looked good in the preview

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    3. Looked good in the preveiw, huh? Like how everything looks better in the cookbook.

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  9. Ok, Farkle's room has a close up view of the Chrysler Building. That means he doesn't live in Greenwich Village like Riley and Maya and shouldn't be attending JQA with them.

    It also looks exactly like set they used for the character Corey played on I Didn't Do It earlier this year when he also played a rich kid. Reuse those sets to save money.

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    1. Since when does Maya live in Greenwich Village--that's one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the country. The Matthews' apartment would cost several thousands of dollars a month.

      Didn't "Tower of Terror" establish that Maya lives a considerable distance away from Riley's apartment? If anyone shouldn't be attending JQA, it's Maya.

      Staurt's a billionaire; I'm sure he can send Farkle wherever he feels like--though it is odd. It's been firmly established that Farkle met the girls in first grade...though now that I stop to think about it, I don't think he actually said the FIRST DAY of first grade. If Farkle went to a school in Chrysler-Neighborhood and got teased and wanted to go to a different school, I suppose it's possible Minkus decided to find one in another nice neighborhood. We may find out something like that happened in "Bay Window."

      But then again, it does seem a little odd. I'd have thought "Meets Popular" had Farkle pegged as living in Greenwich, since Cory had no reservations about Riley staying at the party for a considerable length of time. And "Meets Sneak Attack" implied that Farkle frequently ate breakfast at the Matthews, which would indicate that he lives fairly close by.

      One last note, my friend, since I need to pick Shipping Wars up from work. Do you find it odd that neither Riley nor Lucas has apparently been to Farkle's apartment before? Riley's been friends with Farkle since they were little, after all.

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    2. If they all go to school together, they should all be living in the same neighborhood. That applies pretty much anywhere.

      The pictures do make it appear that the 3 other kids haven't seen Farkle's room before though. It may that the Minkii (HAAAAAA) don't have Farkle's friends over so as not to flaunt their wealth. Stewart implied in "Meets Farkle" that the family has always been wealthy, and he never showed it in BMW and Farkle doesn't seem to have overt displays of money in this series either.

      As for when they met, I believe we will see that they met at a Halloween party when they were in the first grade. Perhaps they weren't all in the same class back then. Or maybe that is just when they became friends.

      Still I would have guessed that the girls as least would have been to Farkle's room at least when they were younger and wouldn't have quite understood the wealth disparity.

      Oh, and even though Greenwich Village is an upscale neighborhood, there are still parts that haven't been renovated and apartments are still relatively affordable (though probably not anything Katy can afford, but it is TV) Maya's place shouldn't have been too far from where Riley and Farkle lived as the boys were trick-or-treating, and one assumes they did that relatively close to home.

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    3. You sound educated on the happenings of New York City, 1960poster. I remember you mentioning you supported the Mets. So you're a Yank who doesn't support the Yankees?

      The Village apartment thing was when I googled "3-bedroom apartments in Greenwich Village" on a whim.

      A school party serving as the meeting ground for Riley, Farkle, and Maya becoming a Power Trio does seem likely. And I won't lie, I still think that the show would have been exponentially stronger if the Power Trio had been kept instead of the Core Four.

      Stewart? I thought it was "Stuart," but that probably has to do with Stuart Little more than anything else. And although it was never stated in BMW--except, maybe "Santa's Little Helper" that he was wealthy, it does add a layer to the way he would bicker with Shawn. In any case, Minkus probably had too much pride to not build Minkus International himself.

      "Money" actually looks pretty good. Can't say I'm looking forward to "STEM" though.

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    4. I'm kinda getting a little bit of Turkey Day vibes. Kids find out just how filthy fing rich Farkle is? Class differences maybe. We'll see.

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    5. Yes Cryptid, I grew up so close to Manhattan that when I was a kid I could see the World Trade Center being built across the Hudson River. I worked in Manhattan from 1999 until I just moved, so yes NYC metro area is like my home town.

      And you are correct about the spelling of Stuart. There are several acceptable spellings, just like Shawn/Sean

      And how can you call me a Yank? Aren't you and your brother "real" northerners?

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    6. Kinda. Grew up on the West Coast. Been in Northern New England for over a decade now.

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    7. How the hell did he figure that out? All we've ever said about our home is that last winter we got a shitload of snow.

      Happy New Year's Eve, Sean and Christian. Cryptid456 casually cursed in the comments.

      Speaking of which, while I may be a Yank in the regional sense, I have the soul of a Southern Gentleman.

      It's curious--Farkle's family is very rich, but he doesn't flaunt his wealth, and when you think about it, there was plenty of episodes that it could have been a factor.
      It definitely looks character-driven. The issue of class differences was touched on in "World of Terror" so, there is definitely a chance we'll see that.

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    8. I'm down for a "class differences" episode, but it can't possibly be as good as Turkey Day, so maybe I don't want it after all... Any of us can imagine how saccharine and low-hanging-fruit it would be. Some ANGRY moment where Maya tells Riley that she JUST DOESN'T GET IT, and some TOUCHING moment where Farkle DOESN'T CARE HOW MUCH MONEY YOU HAVE.

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    9. That's an excellent point Sean--what made "Turkey Day" so good was that both the upper-middle class Matthews and the lower-class Hunters were called out for their behavior. Alan and Amy felt uncomfortable in a less-than-safe neighborhood (For what it's worth, Philadelphia has one of the highest crime rates in the nation). And Chet had to get over his own self-righteous pride.

      Given that Cory and Topanga have gone out of their way to ensure Maya's life gets a bit easier, while it took /years/ for Alan and Amy to warm up to Shawn, I don't even know if the effort would even be worth it.

      That being set, a change of scenery is always nice: Minkus Penthouse is brand-new and we haven't seen Maya's apartment in a year and a half. In any case, I don't think it's possible for "Money" to be as bad as I'm sure "STEM" will be. If nothing else, it has Mark Cuban...who is semi-awesome. Cuban owns the Mavericks, so I'd say we may get another joke about Riley being a Knicks fanatic.

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    10. Oh STEM is going to be abysmal. I don't think anybody on the planet is looking forward to it.

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    11. Commander Christian and Brigadier General Sean, Corporal Cryptid456 requests permission to leave a profanity-laden comment in response to STEM after the episode airs.

      Also, it's almost New Year's! *Blows noise maker*

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    12. I'm just waiting for Instagram to leak it. I can't bring myself to watch STEM live.

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    13. I'm watching Train of Fools. Definitely better than Girl Meets New Year. Unfortunately, this is one of the ones where they tried to make Turner and Eli real characters.

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    14. The episode automatically fails by having the "hip young black guy."

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    15. Happy New Years. Clips from STEM are up.
      https://www.instagram.com/makeluck/

      Oh yeah, Eli...that was a thing.

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    16. *Watches some of the clips*

      Kill me. Kill me now.

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  10. You should review Game of Thrones.
    Ok, ok, maybe cliche. Maybe do Boardwalk Empire?

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  11. link to girl meets stem!! http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3kd9do_my-science-project_tv

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    1. Thanks for the link. That was much better than I thought it would be.

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    2. That was EXPONENTIALLY better than what I thought it would be.

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    3. did you guys know that farkle likes science



      and maya doesn't

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    4. Hey, I'm not saying I loved the episode; I went in thinking it would be "World of Terror 2"-bad. This is more..."Creativity"-bad.

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    5. Cryptid, it was much better than Creativity. I truthfully didn't find anything to complain about at all (not going to get into specifics now). That said, I didn't think it was top 5 material, just that it contained nothing objectionable.

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    6. Sean, based on what little "real" school we've seen in this series so far, I feel it is safe to say that Art is the only class in school Maya likes. She probably only tolerates Cory's class because they get to yap so much, and while she likes Harper, English doesn't seem to be her thing either. She can't read for shit, we saw that in "New Year" and in "New Teacher" where Riley read the words and Maya looked at the pictures.

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    7. Oh it's reasonable that she doesn't like science. What I said was a comment on 99% of Maya's lines being some variation of "ugh i dont like this *audience laughter*"

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    8. Fair enough, Sean. This episode wasn't great, but with this specific set-up, this was probably as good as we were ever going to get.

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    9. Hi guys, I’ll happily wait on STEM and keep my expectations low. Based on the show’s demonstrated lack of understanding of science, if for no other reason, I wasn’t looking forward to this one anyway.

      Disney, at least up here, aired a string of episodes of various shows yesterday they claimed were the Best of 2015. For GMW, they had Semi Formal and…Fish.

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    10. Hi Milestones! Long time, no chat.

      "Disney, at least up here, aired a string of episodes of various shows yesterday they claimed were the Best of 2015. For GMW, they had Semi Formal and…Fish."

      My God..my poor, poor friend, tell me that you still maintain your love for noir.

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    11. Hey Cryptid, my young friend. I went back home for Christmas and didn’t have much opportunity to do more than read this post and comments.

      Thanks for the concern, and I still love noir.

      Generally, I need to watch an episode a few times before it lodges in my memory. Re the BMW holiday episode discussion above, I remember liking Santa’s Little Helper and that it threw a light on Shawn’s home life, but that’s it.

      Bad stuff seems to stick more readily. But, only having watched it the once, months ago, the adverse impact of Fish has faded nicely.

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    12. Stem was decent. When are you and Christian going to review?

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    13. the night it airs, which i believe is the 8th

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  12. Ugh, sorry your life has become a dumpster fire, Sean. I hope it gets better in the new year.

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    1. It's okay. My professional and social life are solid, just had some girlllllllll problemssssssssssss.

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  13. Check it out guys, it's one of those Trivia Slideshows. And this one actually has stuff I didn't know--apparently, Anthony Tyler Quinn first auditioned for Alan Matthews.

    http://www.ranker.com/list/things-you-didnt-known-about-boy-meets-world/amylindorff?format=SLIDESHOW&page=1

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    1. Whoa. I can't even imagine ATQ as Alan. I mean, the obvious problem is that he's too young for the role, but also just... nah.

      That's an interesting topic. What other actors on the show do you think would have been good in each other's roles? Like obviously, the real actors brought their own thing, but there's still some I think could have done interesting things with other parts.

      Off-hand: I think Rider would have made an interesting Cory, and I could see Will as Jack or (if younger) as Shawn. Ben could only have been Cory.

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    2. This ranker list is kind of garbage though. They spell "Shawn" wrong throughout, and they incorrectly state that Eric only missed Sixteen Candles and a Four-Hundred Pound Man, which isn't true (at the very least, he also missed Heartbreak Cory and If You Can't Be With the One You Love...)

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    3. ATQ as shorthand...works for me.

      This is an interesting topic indeed--Sabrina tried out for Riley, as I recall. It's hard to say: Sabrina's the most talented of the kids, but I'm not sure if she can do Optimistic Goofball the way Rowan does. Rowan could not be anyone but Riley. Taylor Buchanan would have made a more interesting Lucas--he's far more charismatic, but to be fair to Peyton, he could only do so much with what he's written. Corey Fogelmanis is Farkle Minkus.

      Jason Marsden could have pulled off Eric, I think. And I think Adam Scott could have been Jack.

      The adults of Boy Meets World are perfect, but I think William Russ could have pulled off being a teacher. He was a college professor in an episode of "Touched By An Angel" and did a decent job there. He definitely has an air of authority to him.

      Funnily enough, Danielle Fishel wasn't even the first choice for Topanga. That was Marla Sokoloff. Who I had to google. She was Gia on "Full House" and one of the stuck-up girls in "Cory's Alternative Friends." I cannot think of anybody less-Topangay from the TGIF line-up.

      Rider Strong was apparently the first and last audition for Shawn. Michael Jacobs apparently has a sixth sense when it comes to these things.

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    4. I noticed that too--I think Ranker may be based in Britain or Canada. A lot of the British fans spell Corey Matthews and Sean Hunter. It bugs me too, but I got used to it.

      I only posted the link because of the facts I didn't know--usually those lists are super obvious things that have been known for years or obvious foreshadowing.

      But I had no clue that Quinn had tried out for Alan.

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