[[quoteright:320:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/boymeetsworld.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:320: Oddly enough [[TheWoobie that's Shawn]], not Cory, taking center stage.]]
This SitCom on Creator/{{ABC}} followed the main character, Cory Matthews, from middle school, to HighSchool, to [[CaliforniaUniversity College]], and to marriage. It includes a lot of LampshadeHanging and [[BreakingTheFourthWall fourth-wall breaching]]. It lasted from September 1993 to May 2000, producing a total of 158 episodes over seven seasons.

Cory Matthews is the middle child of a typical suburban family. His parents bicker, but are generally HappilyMarried. His older brother Eric is at best a [[{{Seinfeld}} mimbo]] and at worst a raging idiot, while his sister Morgan is...well, hardly touched upon. But the show's not really about her, so that's fine. Cory's best friend, Shawn, lives in a trailer park and has eternal problems with his father. Living next street over from and sharing a fence with the Matthews is Cory's teacher Mr. Feeny, always there to spout wisdom to Cory, Eric, his parents, or whoever else might need it. Rounding out the regular cast is Topanga. Originally a free-spirited GranolaGirl in Cory's class, she develops into his nerdy love interest and eventual wife.

The show added several more characters to the main cast as it went along, including CoolTeacher Mr. Turner (who later [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappeared]]), Shawn's [[LongLostRelative long-lost half-brother]] Jack, who becomes [[HeterosexualLifePartners Eric's best friend]], Shawn's first long-term girlfriend Angela, and Eric and Jack's roommate Rachel.

While occasionally campy and cheesy, the show had a sizable following for most of its run, and was a staple of ABC's Thank-God-It's-Friday lineup. It was also known for defying the usual {{Status Quo is God}} edicts of its brand of sitcom, preferring instead to chronicle Cory's journey to adulthood in something approaching real time, with him starting a new grade each season, and eventually moving on to college and married life.

A SequelSeries, ''Girl Meets World'', is now being produced by Disney and original creator Michael Jacobs, set to air starting in 2014. Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel will reprise their roles as Cory and Topanga, with 11-year-old Rowan Blanchard playing their daughter Riley--who will, presumably, meet world. Completing the family is August Maturo as Riley's younger brother, Louis. (Teo Halm was cast as older brother Elliot for the pilot but [[ThePeteBest will not continue into the series]]). Creator/WilliamDaniels will also return as Mr. Feeny in at least the pilot episode; Betsy Randle has confirmed that she and William Russ will reprise their roles as Amy and Alan Matthews once the show gets off the ground. Many of the other original actors have expressed interest in returning, and creator Michael Jacobs has made clear that all of them are welcome. So far, Rider Strong (Shawn), William Daniels (Feeny), William Russ (Alan), Betsy Randle (Amy) and Lee Norris (Minkus) have also been confirmed to return for a guest appearance, and you can usually find hints as to who ''else'' might be coming back at [[https://twitter.com/GMWWriters the official twitter page for the writing staff]].

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!!The show provides examples of:

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[[folder:Tropes A-L]]
* AbhorrentAdmirer: Minkus for Topanga in season one, though Topanga herself (being a {{Cloudcuckoolander}} at the time) doesn't seem to mind.
* AmbiguouslyJewish: The Matthews celebrate Christmas, but Eric and Cory can be heard using Yiddish idioms and Allen asks a rabbi to say a prayer for baby Joshua. Ben Savage is Jewish in real life.
* AcademicAlphaBitch: Topanga counted up her A's for the year, and insisted that her final assignment get an A, even though it wasn't for the grade, just to ensure that she was valedictorian over Minkus.
* AcquiredSituationalNarcissism: Eric gets this in one episode when becomes an acclaimed stage actor, although it's only used for one gag and is not the focus of the episode.
-->'''Amy:''' Promise me you won't let these things go to your head.
-->'''Eric:''' I would never!
-->'''Amy:''' Ooh look Bloomingdales is having a white sale.
-->'''Eric:''' THAT'S NOT ABOUT ME!
* ActuallyPrettyFunny: In "Santa's Little Helpers," Amy tells Alan that a MallSanta had a heart attack (shouting "Rudolph!" in the process) while Morgan was sitting on his lap. Alan can't resist laughing and makes a joke about "Rudolph and eight other reindeer pulling a pine box." Amy gets in a few words criticizing him for it before she starts laughing herself.
* AdamWesting: Occurred when the Monkees guest-starred, basically as themselves (Or at least CaptainErsatz of themselves).
* AdultsAreUseless: Mr. Feeny is perhaps the most spectacular [[AvertedTrope aversion]] of this trope ever to appear in a kid-oriented sitcom. (Creator/WilliamDaniels has said that this was what attracted him to the role in the first place.) Alan and Amy are no slouches, either, and nor is Mr. Turner, when the kids start attending John Adams High. The one adult who is consistently depicted as a "loser", Chet Hunter, is strictly PlayedForDrama.
* AesopAmnesia: Lampshaded as part of the ShowWithinAShow "Kid Gets Acquainted with the Universe.":
-->'''Ben Sandwich:''' You know, how could I learn so much, every week, and ''still be so stupid?!''"
* AlcoholicParent: Shawn's father is a recovered alcoholic.
* TheAllegedCar: It's mentioned a few times in the earlier seasons that Eric has one, but it is never seen onscreen.
** Unless it's that one he's driving in the Season 4 opening credits!
** Or the one he's seen driving in the Season 4 episodes "You Can Go Home Again" and "Easy Street."
* AllGirlsWantBadBoys: KidAnova Shawn has a troubled home life and and somewhat of a "bad boy" image. However, the bad boy aspect of his character became less prevelent as the series went on, and was basically dropped by the time he got a steady girlfriend in season five. There are also several times when Cory tries to impress girls by acting "dangerous", usually failing at it.
* AllJustADream: The slasher movie scenario in "And Then There Was Shawn" ...OrWasItADream
* AlohaHawaii: [[spoiler: Cory and Topanga]]'s honeymoon in Hawaii.
* AloofBigBrother: Eric started out this way, and even had shades of this later on.
* AmazinglyEmbarrassingParents: Alan and Amy Matthews usually avoided this, however in one episode Amy decides to take a creative writing class at Pennbrook and happens to enroll in Eric's class. She proceeds to write artsy short stories about her and Alan's wedding night and Eric's birth.
* AmbiguousSyntax: From the episode "The Honeymoon Is Over":
-->'''Topanga:''' There was a guy shot in our apartment over a salad, the remains of which are still on the wall!
-->'''Angela:''' [[{{squick}} ...the guy or the salad?]]
-->'''Topanga:''' I don't really want to know. [[CrossesTheLineTwice I ate it anyway]].
* AmericanGothicCouple: In "Angela's Men", Eric poses as the farmer in front of a copy of the painting in order to sneak up on Topanga.
* AnAesop: Quite often delivered by Feeny.
** Probably too much, because in later seasons Eric becomes convinced that Mr. Feeny is some sort of SpiritAdvisor / messiah figure that he literally begins to stalk him and worship like a religious prophet.
** Eric would also provide a few Aesop moments to Cory throughout the series.
** And as if to ''really'' drive the point home Cory would then turn around and deliver the same one to Eric before the episodes end.
* AnalogyBackfire: In the episode where Topanga moves to Pittsburgh, Cory is reading RomeoAndJuliet at the time, and he keeps proclaiming that he and Topanga will be fine just like them...until Mr. Feeny tells him to skip ahead to the end.
* AndStarring
** William Russ (Alan Matthews) received an "And" credit throughout the entire run of the show.
** Matthew Lawrence (Jack Hunter) received a "With" credit from Season 5 onwards, coming before the placement of William Russ in the credits. All other new additions were tacked onto the last position of the credits immediately prior to Russ (and later Lawrence).
** Averted with William Daniels, despite being the most seasoned actor. However, he received second billing after Ben Savage.
* TheArtifact: Topanga's ''name'' was one. Her character was given that name to emphasize her GranolaGirl personality and overal weirdness (the name comes from Topanga Canyon in Los Angeles, where a lot of hippies reside), but after her character was retooled in season two and those aspects of her character were dropped, she just became a normal girl with a weird name. In light of this, there were several jokes about her name throughout the series.
* ArtifactTitle: Cory had married Topanga by the end of the series. He could hardly be called a boy at that point.
** Well, unless you look at the series as the story of this boy growing into a man. So, him getting married in the final season sort of fits.
* AscendedExtra:
** Topanga went from being a recurring character to one of the most important characters on the show.
** Angela is a more literal example. She first appears in season 5 episode 2 as a student in Feeny's class who has one line of dialogue, and then in season 5 episode 7 she is introduced as Shawn's girfriend and from there she becomes a recurring character and then a main character.
* AsleepInClass: The show had several humorous situations involving Cory and/or Shawn falling asleep in class. A particularly funny example involved Shawn waking up thinking he's still at home and while half-awake stumbling out of the classroom to "go to school". A few minutes later he walks back in utterly confused, saying "I don't know where I am".
** An example of them both being asleep occurs in Mr. Turner's class, and Mr. Feeny walks in. When Shawn and Cory wake up, Shawn complains that "Now I don't know which class I slept through!"
** In the opening scene of season two's "Wake Up, Little Cory", virtually the entire class is falling asleep as Mr. Turner is teaching a lesson on the Shakespeare play ''MuchAdoAboutNothing''. Ironically as Mr. Turner states that Shakespeare's plays have continued to keep people "glued to their seats" today, Shawn promptly falls out of his chair, still asleep. Cory who like the rest of the class, was awakened by the event then proceeds to (while still sitting in his chair) stomp Shawn awake with his right foot, Shawn then says to Mr. Turner "these chairs really aren't the best for sleeping".
* AtTheOperaTonight: In one episode Mr. Feeny takes Eric to the opera in an attempt to instill an appreciation for culture in him. Eric is bored out of his mind, but just as he's about to give up and leave, "Music/RideOfTheValkyries" begins to play, which he recognizes as [[WesternAnimation/WhatsOperaDoc "Kill Da Wabbit."]] From that point on, he's utterly enthralled, to Feeny's exasperation.
* AttractiveBentGender: Cory & Eric are portrayed as being terrible as women, making for an aversion. Shawn & Jack are portrayed as playing up this trope to the hilt, picking up guys just by looks alone.
* BackForTheDead: [[spoiler:Chet Hunter]]
* BackToSchool: In "How to Succeed in Business", Amy enrolls in a creative writing class at the local university realizing she's bored with being a HouseWife, and happens to enroll in the class Eric is in. However, it's unclear if she stays in the class or not because it [[WhatHappenedToTheMouse isn't brought up again after that episode]].
* BadBadActing: Averted in "Hogs and Kisses"; Cory isn't exactly flat or monotone in his performance for the Pennbrook video tour, but he ''does'' constantly flub his lines and appears very ill-at-ease. (Topanga and Shawn are both better at it while still managing to pull off the general stilted-ness of these kinds of videos.)
* BadGuysPlayPool: Frankie "The Enforcer" is a noted pool champion at Chubbies.
* TheBeard: In the episode appropriately title "The Beard", Shawn can't choose between two girls, so while he goes out with one of them, he recruits Cory to "sit on" the other, lest he should change his mind. Needless to say, the girls find out and are none too happy about this stunt, and their schoolmates loudly proclaim them to be "scum."
* BehindTheBlack: Used to [[LampshadeHanging Lampshade]] Minkus and Mr. Turner's disappearance.
* BetaCouple: Once Angela was added to the show, Shawn and Angela became this to the OfficialCouple Cory and Topanga, except when they break up during season six.
* BetterAsFriends: Jack and Rachel eventually decide this.
* TheBGrade:
** Not really a grade, but at one point Minkus gets a question wrong in Mr. Feeny's class and has a minor breakdown. He's still able to walk around, but is frazzled.
** Mr Feeny gives Topanga a B for her first college mid-term. She proceeds to chase him across campus demanding he change it, in part because Cory & Shawn received the same grade.
* BigBrotherInstinct:
** Eric shows this toward Cory intermittently.
** Cory shows this in the series finale, when it comes to Joshua.
* BigBrotherMentor: Mr Turner serves as one to Shawn. In "Cult Fiction," incidentally the last appearance of Mr Turner, Topanga outright states that they're like brothers.
* BigDamnHeroes: Eric and Mister Turner pull this off every now and then. Shawn does this in "Ressurection" where his return signals the resoloution of the storyline's conflict.
* BillingDisplacement: Gradually happened over the course of the series, as the new additions to the cast were added to the roster in the order they joined the show[[note]]Except for Matthew Lawerence, who received a "With" credit[[/note]]. By Season 6, this meant that Betsy Randle was billed prior to everyone ''except'' Ben Savage & William Daniels, and Lindsay Ridgeway was billed prior to Maitland Ward & Trina [=McGee=], despite their severely reduced roles in the final seasons.
* BitingTheHandHumor: In the episode where Cory and Topanga babysit a kid, the writers deliver a really big TakeThat at ABC for moving the show's timeslot. ABC took notice and changed the timeslot back not long after this.
-->'''Kid:''' At least let me watch my favorite show. It's on right now!
-->'''Topanga:''' But it's 9:30, I know you don't stay up past nine.
-->'''Kid:''' It used to be on at 8:30 but this year they moved it to 9:30, those idiots.
-->'''Cory:''' Wait a minute, they moved that show to 9:30? Why?
-->'''Kid:''' No one knows!
-->'''Cory:''' Well was it doing badly at 8:30?
-->'''Kid:''' No!
-->'''Cory:''' Well why didn't they leave it alone?
-->'''Kid:''' They're trying to kill it! They're trying to kill it!
-->'''Cory:''' Those are bad bad people.
* BlackComedyBurst: "And Then There Was Shawn" and "The Psychotic Episode".
* BlackLikeMe: In the episode "Chick Like Me", Shawn dresses up as girl to learn about dating from the female perspective.
* BlindWithoutEm: Minkus
* BookEnds: The very first lines of the very first episode are Cory and Mr. Feeny greeting each other at the beginning of another school day. The very last lines of the very last episode are Cory and Mr. Feeny saying their final goodbyes and leaving the school for the last time.
* BraggingThemeTune: Parodied in one episode when Eric decides he wants to be a detective on TV and comes up with his own theme song:
--> When a crime breaks out, all the cute girls shout,
--> Get the...good looking guy!
--> When there's a crime out there, he's gonna...
--> Comb his hair, cause he's the...good looking guy!
* BreakingTheFourthWall:
** For one example, see TitleDrop.
** At the end of the episode "They're Killing Us", Cory and Topanga directly invite the viewers to their wedding.
* BreakoutCharacter: Shawn and Topanga. Season 1 focused more on the Matthew's Family. As the series moved on, it focused primarily on Cory's social circle, primary Shawn and Topanga.
** Topanga's success in particular was a surprise to everyone. She originally was created as a fairly generic {{granola girl}} character with a funny name, not intended to last beyond the typical "the main character dates a funny weird girl" storyline she had been created for. But her chemistry with Cory was so natural that she stayed on and ended up being Cory's one true love.
* BreatherEpisode: "Bee True" from season six was the first purely comedic episode after eight straight episodes with at least one dramatic plotline. In those eight episode the show dealt with themes such as death, grief, finding oneself, parental abandonment, parental responsibility, and premature birth. "Bee True" involved Cory and Shawn concocting a Zany Scheme to help Mr. Feeny win over Dean Bolander.
* {{Bridezilla}}: Cory acts like a ''groom''zilla just before his wedding to Topanga. Though mostly towards beleaguered best man Shawn, who's having problems of his own with the whole thing. It turns out he's only doing it because he doesn't want to talk with Shawn about how their friendship is going to have to change once Cory's married.
* BrilliantButLazy: Eric; who has Rain Man-like counting skills, is able to manipulate many scenarios to his own advantage, gives Cory and his other friends sage, reasonable advice, and has Mr. Feeny constantly going on about his "true potential."
* BroadStrokes: Although the major story holds together week to week, many things tend to be forgotten from episode to episode. There are at least two explanations of Eric and Cory's hair styles(one episode says Cory's hair is curly because of a Blonde Babysitter curling it on new years eve, stating the norm is like Eric's, and a few episodes later, Eric's straight hair is attributed to taking a ride in the dryer in the 5th grade, stating that the norm is like Cory's). Other variations include the embarrassing first name of Vader (being Leslie or Francis). Don't even get started on the various relations that pop in and out of existence.
** In the case of Eric's hair vs. Cory's hair, considering Alan, Amy and Eric all have wavy, sandy hair and only Cory has the black curls, one would have to assume Eric's is the norm.
* BuccaneerBroadcaster: In "On the Air", Cory and Shawn form their own pirate radio station at school after Mr. Feeny kicks them off the school's station for turning their show from a dull Q&A session into the much more inappropriate "Lunchtime Lust". They only get to enjoy their success for a few minutes before Shawn accidentally gives away their location on air and Feeny busts them.
* BuffySpeak: From Eric's one-man play: "The hot wind howled, like a kind of howling... hot... windy thing."
* TheBully: Harley and his two goons, Frankie and Joey. All of whom are strangely eloquent.
** Strangely, Joey is the only one that's not eloquent. Strange because he's sort of the weasel-y trickster-y one that is usually the smartest in any given gang whereas guys like Harley are usually lunkheads and guys like Frankie are usually monosyllabic.
* TheBusCameBack:
** The bullies' leader, Harley, was sent to military school near the end of the second season and almost immediately wound up being replaced by Griff Hawkins. Harley returns for one third season episode which pits him against Griff (after which neither are seen again).
** Minkus makes a return in the Season 4 finale, as the group graduates from John Adams High.
* ButtMonkey: Cory and Eric.
* ButWeUsedACondom: In the episode where Topanga is MistakenForPregnant.
-->'''Cory:''' We were very careful!
-->'''Shawn:''' Did you use a...
-->'''Cory:''' Yes!
-->'''Shawn:''' Was she on the...
-->'''Cory:''' Uh-huh!
-->'''Shawn:''' Well, did you try the...
-->'''Cory:''' Everything! I'm not sure we even had sex!
* CantGetAwayWithNuthin: This occurs in most episodes, but it gets played with a few times:
** {{Lampshaded}} in the episode "B & B's B'N'B", in which, in light of getting away with some hilarious hijinks, Cory begins to worry about whether or not the universe cares about him anymore. To his relief, Mr. Feeny catches him and Shawn soon after the aforementioned revelation. even then He lets them off scott free though he takes the money Shawn made.
** [[ExaggeratedTrope Exaggerated]] in the episode "Wheels": Cory gets pulled over by the police for going ''1 mph over the speed limit'' in a country road speed trap. On his first day with a driver's license.
--->'''Cory:''' 24... 25... 26... Look at me I'm breaking the law!
--->''''
--->'''Cory:''' [[LampshadeHanging Well we all saw *that* coming]].
** Actually [[AvertedTrope averted]] in "The War": Rachel goes to Mr. Feeny after Cory & Shawn somehow park her car in her dorm room, and then set the car alarm off to wake her up. Feeny refuses to punish them because there [[LoopholeAbuse isn't a rule against parking a car in a dorm room]] and he finds the prank to be hilarious, whilst also being more interested in ''how'' they pulled it off.
* CaliforniaUniversity: In a rather extreme example, all the main characters go to the fictional Pennbrook University in Philadelphia. Eric is the first to go there in season five and Cory, Shawn, Topanga, and Angela join him there in season six. Nevermind the fact that it's highly unlikely super-genius Topanga and barely-managed-to-graduate Shawn would end up at the same college. Then Mr. Feeny, after finding out retirement wasn't for him, takes a teaching position there and continues to be [[TwoTeacherSchool their only teacher]].
** It is actually makes a touch more sense in context. Topanga was planning on going to Yale until she and Cory got engaged, and Cory and Shawn had a long-standing deal to attend the same college and when Shawn wasn't initially accepted to Pennbrook he manipulated events to get him to attend.
* CallBack: The [[BrokenBase much maligned]] episode where Rachel kicks Eric and Jack out of their apartment is a reference to when the duo do the [[LaserGuidedKarma same exact thing]] to Shawn when Rachel moved in.
* CallingTheOldManOut: In "Raging Cory," ''both'' Cory and Eric wind up doing this to Alan (as well as accidentally pushing him over). Cory is miffed that Alan never does any sport or buddy activities with him, while Eric later gets annoyed that Alan never has meaningful conversations with him about life, philosophy, art, etc. Alan realizes that he was only giving each half of what they needed from a father.
* CanCrushingCranium:
** Eric hurts himself this way.
** Like brother like... brother. Cory did the same in an episode when he joined the wrestling team. In the same episode the members of the wrestling team as well as their girlfriends play this straight.
* CaptivityHarmonica: In the AlternateRealityEpisode in which the main characters are soldiers fighting in WWII, Cory plays the harmonica because he's stuck fighting in Europe and is separated from Topanga.
-->'''Alan:''' You really miss her, don't you?
-->'''Cory:''' [[LampshadeHanging You don't play the harmonica when you're happy]].
* CastingGag:
** The episode "State of the Unions" pulls a two-fer:
*** Mr. Feeny and Dean Bolander, teachers at Pennbrook University, who are older people entering into a late-life marriage, are played by real-life husband-and-wife Creator/WilliamDaniels and Bonnie Bartlett; they were married in their twenties, shortly after ''graduating'' from Northwestern University, and had been married for nearly ''50 years'' by the time of the episode.
*** Topanga's parents, who have been together for many years and whose marriage is now on the rocks, were played by then-newlyweds [[ThisIsSpinalTap Michael McKean]] and [[{{Smallville}} Annette O'Toole]]. As of this writing, the two remain married in RealLife, though their characters (after [[TheOtherDarrin a change in casting]]) divorced in the following season.
* CatapultNightmare: Cory does this several times in "The Psychotic Episode".
* Catchphrase: "{{Gasp!}} Topanga!"
* CatholicSchoolGirlsRule: In "Train of Fools", Shawn gets excited when he finds on the subway a group of Catholic schoolgirls who "ditched their nun" (and yes, they were wearing the uniform). Later, he gets even more excited when he meets up with a pair of [[TwinThreesomeFantasy twins]] from that group.
* CelebrityLie: In "Fraternity Row", Eric and Jack form a fraternity named "Magnum Pi". When the dean of the fictional Pennbrook College asks who their famous alums are, the two scramble for names and come up with "Bernie Kopell and Ted Lange" (of TheLoveBoat fame). Jack is somehow actually able to get Bernie Kopell and Ted Lange to appear at a fraternity party (presumably because his father has connections), but they still fail to impress the dean.
* CerebusSyndrome: The show ends up becoming more serious with each season, which finally climaxes with the death of a recurring character. However, the show never lost the aforementioned LampshadeHanging and [[BreakingTheFourthWall fourth-wall breaching]].
** In particular it surrounded Shawn and his wildly dysfunctional life. Early seasons his life in a trailer park was played for laughs, with him mentioning shoot-outs and drug busts as [[SeenItAll regular overnight activities]]. Then his mom ran away (taking the ''house'' with her) and his dad went off to track her down, leaving Shawn with the Matthews. While Shawn was welcome there, living with a loving family didn't help his emotional state (knowing his family is so messed up) so Mr. Turner took him in as his legal guardian.
* ChairReveal: Mr. Feeny does this to reveal that he is Cory's new principal when Cory gets sent the principal's office on his first day of high school.
* CharacterizationMarchesOn: Just about every major character who wasn't Shawn or Mr. Feeny.
** Cory starts off as a UnluckyEveryDude, but the end of the series he's a overly neurotic, CampStraight.
** Topanga goes from being a {{Cloudcuckoolander}} GranolaGirl to a [[ThePerfectionist perfectionist]] overachiever.
** Eric TookALevelInDumbass.
* CheckPlease: "CHECK! For the love of God, WILL SOMEONE PLEASE BRING ME A CHECK!"
* CheekCopy: In "How to Succeed in Business" when Shawn and Cory are working in an office mailroom Shawn starts to do this before Cory stops him.
* ChekhovsGag: In "What I Meant to Say", [[ItMakesSenseInContext Shawn stops Cory from giving Topanga flowers]] by snatching them from him and handing them to a jock who happens to walk by in the school hallway. It's a brief gag that isn't given much attention. Then, several scenes later, Cory and Shawn are alone in a classroom doing ComicRolePlay that involves Cory saying "I love you" to Shawn. They look up and see that same jock standing in the doorway holding the flowers and watching them, who then throws the flowers on the floor and walks away in anger.
* ChewingTheScenery: As Eric got crazier he did this more and more, for example his yelling for the check in "Shallow Boy" and his BigWhat in "Things Change". In season 7 when he became a full-on {{Cloudcuckoolander}} he did this almost every episode.
* ChristmasEpisode: "Santa's Little Helper" from season 1, "Easy Street" from season 4, "A Very Topanga Christmas" from season 5, and "Santa's Little Helpers" from season 6.
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome:
** Topanga's older sister Nebula.
** Morgan disappeared for the first half of season three but returned mid-way through the season played by a new actress and her disappearance was lampshaded when she says "That was the longest time out I've ever had!".
** Similarly, Minkus disappeared after season one but made a return appearance in the last episode of season five and lampshaded his disappearance by saying that he'd been on the other side of the school the whole time. He was briefly replaced with a character named Meese, though Meese gets less focus than Minkus did and ultimately gets chucked himself by the end of season 2
** In that same scene they also lampshade the disappearance of Mr. Turner, who disappeared at the end of season four, when Minkus waves to him offscreen.
** Mr. Turner's best friend and third season co-star Eli Williams disappears after the third season without being mentioned again.
** Speaking of best friends Erics Best friend Jason Marsden Vanishes after season 2
** Shawn loses two siblings over the course of the series. He has an older sister named Stacy in the first season, never mentioned after, and we meet his half-brother Eddie in Season 3 and he's never mentioned again. Although, in the case of Eddie, they're so estranged it's understandable Shawn may never encounter him again... and if Virna (rather than Chet) was the half that was related to Eddie, that would make even more sense.
** In the ante-penultimate episode "Angela's Ashes," Angela leaves with her father who has been stationed in Europe for a year. However, in the two-part series finale which immediately follows this episode, everyone acts either as if Angela was never a part of their lives, or her departure wasn't that big of a deal. This is especially manifest in Shawn, who seems to be emotionally stable in the finale. Normally, when even the slightest negative thing has happened to him, he goes into emo mode.
** Shawn's first real girlfriend Dana vanishes without a trace after two episodes in season 3. She resurfaces in Season 5 before being PutOnABus
* CliffHanger: The season 5 finale ends with Topanga proposing to Cory during their high school graduation ceremony.
* ClipShow: The finale. It also included {{Fully Automatic Clip Show}}s of the various BigYes moments throughout the series and of Eric's "[[RunningGag Feeny Call]]".
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Topanga in the first season, Eric later on.
* ComicallySmallBribe: In "Prom-ises, Prom-ises", when Eric tries to get hotel guest information from a hotel clerk:
-->'''Clerk:''' I'm sorry, we don't give that kind of information.\\
'''Eric:''' Really? Well... ''[produces $1 bill]'' Perhaps my friend Mr. Washington will help you change your mind.
* ComicRolePlay: When Topanga suddenly breaks up with Cory after he tells her he loves her, Shawn gets Cory to re-enact the moment he said those words to figure out what got Topanga upset. Thinking they're alone, he gets Cory to pretend he's Topanga and [[HomoeroticSubtext hold his hand and say "I love you"]], only to realize there are a bunch of students looking at them through the doorway.
* ComingOfAgeStory: The series is about an eleven year old who doesn't understand anything about his entire life but is told love is worth it. As he grows up he learns to understand life and love until he reaches the point where he and his life partner set out into the unknown together.
* CompressedVice: Shawn's drinking problem in "If You Can't Be With the One You Love...". He gets drunk for the first time and then has a drinking problem for about a week before his friends convince him to give up drinking altogether. However, he does turn back to alcohol in an episode two seasons later after he learns some devastating news, though only for that episode.
* CommutingOnABus: Alan, Amy, and Morgan Matthews in seasons 6 and 7.
* ConcussionsGetYouHigh: In "Easy Street", Eric gives himself a concussion trying to escape from a car that was buried in the snow. Upon recovering Eric is loopy, cheerful and generally appears pleasantly intoxicated.
* ContinuityCreep: Most of the episodes from the first two seasons were standalone episodes. The first major story arc began at the end of season two involving Shawn being abandoned by his parents and having to go live with Mr. Turner. From there on continuity gradually became more important.
* ContinuityDrift: As Cory and Topanga's RomanceArc progresses, their history seems to drift also. In the early years of the show, Topanga was a {{Cloudcuckoolander}} whose crush on a very unamused Cory was PlayedForLaughs. Later, there are many references to them having been totally in love since they were in Pull-Ups. This is {{Handwaved}} later by saying that Cory and Topanga were best friends when they were really little until Cory was teased by other little boys for the friendship. As a result, he abandoned the friendship and didn't rediscover his feelings for Topanga until puberty.
* ContinuityNod: a few here and there, most notably Shawn's pet pig, "Little Cory" and Morgan's former teddy bear, Fluffers, who shows up in Jack and Eric's apartment a few times. A JerkJock that Eric was forced to tutor (raising his own grades in the process) showed up later as the pilot of a plane Cory and Topanga booked. There were also several references to the time Shawn blew up a mailbox in season one.
** WordOfGod says that the geranium Mr. Feeny uses for his metaphor about Topanga needing room to grow in the series finale is the same plant that Cory gave him while he was in the hospital in the final episode of season one.
* CoolLoser: Cory
* CoolTeacher:
** John Turner & Eli Williams in Seasons 2 through 4.
** An argument could be made for Mr Feeny.
** Subverted in the episode "Everybody Loves Stuart": the eponymous character is a young college professor who starts out as one of these but then he oversteps his boundaries & somewhat aggressively hits on Topanga; when Cory confronts him on the matter, Stuart makes it clear that he's not going to stop, then tries to get Cory expelled for fighting back, all the while claiming that Cory & Topanga are lying.
* {{Corpsing}}: Pay attention when Will Friedle is at his most hilarious, and it's possible to see the rest of the cast doing this. There are times when you can't ''see'' the corpsing on screen, but you can hear it ''over the laugh track''.
* CosmeticCatastrophe: In "Cory's Alternative Friends", Cory leaves a hair care product in his air for too long and ends up having a really bad hair day.
* CosmicPlaything: Cory's theory as to why he couldn't get away with things.
* {{Costumer}}: The episode "No Guts, No Cory".
* TheCouch: The Matthews home, Mr. Turner's apartment, and the Hunter's trailer (okay, two ratty recliners, but a couch in spirit). Jack and Eric's apartment had a couch, but it was off to the side next to the front door, their kitchen table was used more often
* CoughSnarkCough: This happens in one episode, starting with Shawn's snark aimed at a guest speaker.
-->'''Shawn:'''* cough* Loser!
-->'''Mr. Turner (the teacher present at the time):''' * cough* Detention!
-->'''Shawn:''' * cough* Sorry!
* CrossOver: Two semi-crossovers with ''Series/SabrinaTheTeenageWitch'':
** The first was a CrossoverPunchline during TheTag of one of the Halloween episodes in which Eric is on a date with Sabrina. Also an in-universe example of a CrossoverShip.
** The second was part of a night where in Sabrina, Salem had swallowed a ball that allowed the holder to travel to a different time period, and also saw Salem turn up in the other shows on the TGIF lineup at the time, ''TeenAngel'' and ''You Wish''. However, the other shows were [[FantasticComedy Fantastic Comedies]] but ''BoyMeetsWorld'' was not, so the crossover created a HowUnscientific episode.
** In a vague sense, "The Happiest Show on Earth" has one with ''StepByStep'', due a [[TheCameo cameo]] by Staci Keanan as Dana Foster (''Step By Step'' was filming their [[VacationEpisode Disney World episode]] the same week).
* CurseCutShort: Morgan hated the dress Topanga picks out for her for Cory and Topanga's wedding so much that she said to Topanga "I wouldn't use this dress to wipe my--" before Alan intervened by covering her mouth and dragging her away.
* DaytimeDramaQueen: In "How to Succeed in Business", Amy Matthews is shown to be one, which gets Eric to convince her to get out and do something. Later in the episode, Cory becomes this after getting fired from the work-study program.
* DeanBitterman: Dean Borak of Pennbrook University, who appeared in a couple of episodes in season 5. Bonus points for him being played by Paul Gleason, who played a famous DeanBitterman in ''TheBreakfastClub''.
* DeathBySex: [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]]/[[InvokedTrope invoked]] in "And Then There Was Shawn". When the characters get trapped in a slasher movie scenario, GenreSavvy Shawn claims that the virgins are safe from dying. Sure enough, the characters who say they aren't virgins all die.
* DeadpanSnarker:
** Mr. Feeny. Also a GentlemanSnarker.
** Eric in early episodes. Later ones too, this is one trait that he never quite grew out of.
* DeadPersonConversation: Shawn talks with [[spoiler: his father]] three times after he passes away, the show suggests that he's actually a ghost trying to help Shawn in that little way he can.
* DecemberDecemberRomance: Mr Feeny and Lila Bolander (played, incidentally, by [[RealLifeRelative husband and wife]] Creator/WilliamDaniels and Bonnie Bartlett).
* DeliberateValuesDissonance: PlayedForLaughs in "I Was a Teenage Spy," where Cory dreams he is sent back to the 1950s. When he says "butt" in class, Mr. Turner and all the other students react as if he'd said a horrible curse word.
* DelusionsOfEloquence: In the episode "Honesty Night", Eric gets a word-a-day calendar to improve his vocabulary and he tries to use these words in conversation but repeatedly fails at it. By the end of the episode he gets the hang of it but annoys everybody by using big words in mundane conversation.
* DemotedToExtra: Happened a few times.
** Topanga in Most of season 2 while considered a recurring character until season 3 aside from some early episodes is regulated to a background character with very little interactions with the characters and plot.
** Morgan in season two, when the emphasis shifted from Cory's place in his family to his place in the high school hierarchy (she [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappeared]] at the end of the season, before [[TheOtherDarrin returning midway through season three]], as a minor character for the remainder of the show's run).
** The bullies, who are major characters in season two, gradually decline in prominence. Harley Keiner doesn't even make it all the way through season two (though he does cameo in one episode in season three); his replacement, Griff Hawkins, also only appears once in season three (in the same episode as Harley, in fact). Joey "the Rat" continues appearing well into season three but vanishes before season four (though he does [[TheBusCameBack return]] for the "Graduation" episode at the end of season five). Only Frankie Stechino continues to appear regularly into season four, by which time he's fully matured into a GentleGiant and is basically a friend to Cory and Shawn.
** Mr. Turner in season four; he appears in only ''six'' out of the twenty-two episodes that season. (He didn't miss a single episode in season two or season three.) He is also conspicuous in his absence from the season five finale "Graduation", which brings back most of the ''other'' departed characters (though Minkus does briefly mention him as part of a gag).
* DenserAndWackier: Season seven, especially when compared to the more serious season six. While it had several serious episodes and some realistic plotlines, it also had a lot of convoluted and wacky plotlines, especially the Jack and Eric ones. For example one plotline involved Eric gaining the ability to see into the future whenever he sneezes and Jack trying to use this power to win the lottery.
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: From "We'll Have a Good Time Then...", when Cory tries to write his wedding vows:
-->'''Cory:''' Sometimes two people who love each other are in love, and because of that love, they love each other.
* DidIJustSayThatOutLoud: Cory does this in the middle of class after Topanga breaks up with him for saying "I love you":
-->'''Mr. Williams:''' Without honesty, you're nowhere.
-->'''Cory:''' Honest? Let me tell you a little story about a kid from Philly who was honest. You see, he said what was in his heart, and then the... ''(Beat)'' Oh I'm sorry was that out loud?
* DisguisedInDrag: In the episodes "Chick Like Me", S:4-E:15, and "What a Drag", S:7-E:11. In ''Chick Like Me'', Shawn is diguised as a girl to provide first hand experience for Cory's article. In ''What A Drag'', Jack and Eric both dress as women as a way to avoid the local lunatic gang leader.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: In "I Love You, Donna Karan", Eric discovering Mr. Feeny tutoring another student is played like Mr. Feeny is cheating on him:
-->'''Eric:''' He's a professional tutor! You mean nothing to him!
* DownerEnding: [[spoiler: "We'll Have a Good Time Then..." ends with Chet Hunter's death in the hospital]].
* DoItYourselfPlumbingProject: In "Picket Fences", Cory tries to fix the rusty pipes in his and Topanga's rundown fleabag apartment. Unusual for this trope, he is actually able to fix the pipes without many problems though he does get quite messy in the process.
* DreamSue: episode "Hair Today, Goon Tomorrow," Eric dreams he is the star of an imagined crime-fighting TV show "The Good Looking Guy" complete with opening sequence and theme song.
--> "When a crime breaks out, all the cute girls shout, 'Get the good-looking guy.' (Good looking guy)"
* DrowningMySorrows: Cory does this once after his break up with Topanga in season five. In a later episode, Shawn does this after [[spoiler: he is unable to find his real mother]].
* DumbIsGood: Eric becomes a lot sweeter as his intelligence decreases.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: While season 1 has a different feel, the earliest episodes clearly were the producers experimenting with what worked. Early on Cory was supposed to have two best friends which is why we see rotating friends every episode early on up until after Class Pre-Union, when Shawn is firmly established as his sole best friend.
** Mr. Feeny in the first episodes is rather stern and doesn't really get one of his teachable moments until the 5th episode. The next episode follows suit with Feeny clearly telling Cory he expects better out of him. It's obvious he's aware of Cory's scheme but decides to let it play out. This continues with Feeny taking advantage of any moment to teach Cory that presents himself with him even agreeing to switch places with him for the rest of the week.
** Eric also starts the first few episodes with a girlfriend named Heather. In the first episode Eric lacks any confidence with girls and believes he blew his date with Heather by making a fool of himself. She disappears quickly (it's later revealed she dumped him) after a few episodes. There's also another girl, Linda, that seems significant but she disappears as well. After that Eric becomes more of a smooth talker with confidence, though he starts venturing into his CasanovaWannabe role and also settles more into his ButtMonkey role as well as being more of an idiot after Jason first appears. Also, he's little more than a SatelliteCharacter until Model Family, when he gets his own storyline and a best friend (Jason). Heck, Morgan had already her own storyline in Class Pre-Union. Arguably, It's a Wonderful Night is focused more on him than Cory. These episodes would become more common in the later seasons.
** Shawn's poverty isn't established until later in the season. Its not apparent that his family is any less well off then Cory's in early episodes. In an early episode, his dad does get laid off, but it's not apparent that his family is blue collar, as it's not until Class Pre-Union that his father's occupation is even mentioned; and not until Risky Business that any mention of a trailer is made (it's his uncle's). The Fugitive is really the first establishing episode of Shawn being from the other side of the tracks.
** Topanga while just a guest character in Season 1 is mostly absent early on, with her first appearance not until the 4th episode, then disappearing for the next few only to be featured more regularly.
* ElevatorFailure: In "The Psychotic Episode", Cory has a nightmare where he pushes all of his friends down an empty elevator shaft in Jack and Rachel's apartment building.
* ElvisLives: One episode had a one-off gag where Elvis is one of Alan Matthews' poker buddies.
* EmbarrassingFirstName:
** Cory's real name is Cornelius.
--> '''Cory:''' Shh! Mr. Feeny! Come...''not even Topanga knows that''!
** Also Vader's first name (depending on the episode you watch) of Francis or Leslie.
** Variation in ''Chick Like Me'', when Shawn shyly admits to having thought about crossdressing so much that he had already decided on the name "Veronica" for his female alter ego long before the issue of writing an article ever came up. He's not embarrased about the name, he's just embarrased to admit that he had one ready.
* EmbarrassingMiddleName: Topanga won't reveal her middle name because of this.
-->'''Jack:''' Your first name's Topanga. What could your middle name be, schmooboogie?
* EntendreFailure: From the pregnancy scare episode:
-->'''Shawn:''' "Cory, how would you feel if these two big waffles got all slathered in butter and made a little waffle?"
-->'''Cory:''' "I know what you're saying, Shawn." *beat* "You'd like seconds. I'll be right back."
* EnterStageWindow: Shawn sometimes enters Cory's bedroom this way. Cory also enters Topanga's bedroom this way a few times.
* EroticDream: When Angela asks Cory if he's ever thought of her as more than a friend, Cory responds that he did once when he had a dream about her of this sort. Then, when Angela shoves him onto the bed and climbs on top of him [[ItMakesSenseInContext to prove a point]], Cory says "Oh no! It's the dream!".
* EscalatingWar: All the main characters engage in one in the episode "The War".
* EskimosArentReal: When Mr. Feeny starts lecturing about the Hutus and the Tutsis, Cory and Shawn find the peoples' names so weird that they are convinced he can't be talking about real people and has run out of real subjects and is now making it up.
* EstablishingShot: One for the Matthews' house, one for the high school, and later on one for Eric and Jack's apartment.
* TheExitIsThatWay: See FailedAttemptAtDrama.
* {{Expy}}: Jack and Eric are essentially the Cory and Shawn relationship if slightly skewed to acount for Eric's general wackiness
* FailedAttemptAtDrama: In "My Best Friend's Girl", Cory tries to walk out on Shawn in Mr. Turner's apartment and [[TheExitIsThatWay walks into a closet by mistake]], but saves it with "And I'm taking my sweater!"
* FantasticComedy: While the show was mostly a ComingOfAgeStory comedy, later episodes included more outlandish plots, including crossovers with SabrinaTheTeenageWitch, TimeTravel, Chet Hunter's ghost, and Eric developing PsychicPowers.
* FeudEpisode: Cory and Shawn go through this in the episode "It's Not You, It's Me..." after Shawn accuses Cory of leaving him behind because Cory wants to apply for a higher level college than Shawn can get into.
* FirstKiss: Between Cory and Topanga in her debut appearance, "Cory's Alternative Friends". This was also the FirstKiss of both Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel in RealLife.
* FirstNameBasis:
** In the first season Topanga calls her mom by her first name since she believes calling her "mom" is irrelevant since all kids call their mothers "mom". Cory tried that with his name, but it doesn't work. Cory demonstrated how it doesn't work with his mom, but Topanga just rolls her eyes in a "whatever".
** In the last episode, Cory asks why Mr.Feeny insists on LastNameBasis.
-->''Cory'': "Don't you think you know me well enough to call me 'Cory'?"
-->''Mr.Feeney'': "I know you well enough to call you [[UpToEleven Cornelius]]"
* {{Flanderization}}:
** Eric Matthews went from simply dense, self-centered and girl-crazy to just plain dumb. He also became the funniest part of the show for most viewers, so make of that what you will. Oddly enough, he seems to temporarily revert into something resembling his original characterization in one of the last episodes, the one where he's mad at Cory due to thinking that they don't get along as brothers. His stupidity is almost nonexistent throughout the episode, which the other characters [[LampshadeHanging lampshade]] repeatedly:
-->"Wow, he's really sharp today. Must be well-rested."
** Shawn got dumber and wackier throughout seasons two and three. However this was later reverted through a combination of CharacterDevelopment, HiddenDepths and BreakTheCutie. By season six he was one of the more sensible ones in the group.
** All of the characters, especially in the college years, with the exception of Shawn.
** A notable example is Jack who, despite only being a character for three seasons, went from a humble guy who supposedly worked every summer to put himself through college to a vain, self-centered person who loses it after his father cuts him off.
* FlashForward: There's one in "Seven The Hard Way" set in 2006 that shows a retirement party for Mr. Feeny in a potential future where the gang breaks up (it doesn't go well). In this future, Cory and Topanga have had a baby, Shawn and Angela are both traveling journalists, Jack is a "captain of industry" ([[RidiculouslySuccessfulFutureSelf in his late twenties]]), Rachel moved back to Texas, and Eric became an insane hermit who calls himself "Playswithsquirrels". However, when the episode returns to the present everybody reconciles and this future is averted.
* FoodFight: Eric, Jack and Rachel have one in their apartment in "Hogs and Kisses", complete with a PieInTheFace at the end.
* {{Four Temperament Ensemble}}: the four main characters generally fit this schema, though [[CharacterizationMarchesOn it took them a couple of seasons to get there]] (except one of them took half a season): Eric is sanguine ([[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} and how!]]), Shawn is choleric, Topanga is melancholic, and Cory is phlegmatic (both types). Early on, Topanga was sanguine, Cory was melancholic, and Eric was phlegmatic.
** In later seasons, Cory gets unusually neurotic for a phlegmatic character; the reason he remains so is because [[{{Flanderization}} everyone else gets wackier too]].
** The teachers are mostly neutral temperaments, but Mr. Feeny would be the most melancholic, Mr. Turner the most phlegmatic, and Eli Williams the most sanguine.
** The gang of bullies (counting both leader and temporary replacement): Harley Keiner (choleric), Frankie Stecchino (melancholic), Griff Hawkins (phlegmatic), and Joey Epstein (sanguine).
* FriendsRentControl: How Jack and Eric afford a three-bedroom apartment in Philadelphia is a little bit fuzzy considering that they are seemingly unemployed college students. Jack does have a rich stepfather but he claims that he is able to pay his own bills because he worked hard every summer for his money.
* FriendsWithBenefits: In one episode after Shawn and Angela break up they try to have no-strings-attached sex but Shawn gets too emotional about it and Angela calls it off before they can even get past the makeout foreplay.
* FullHouseMusic: Well, this ''is'' a 90's TGIF sitcom.
* FunPersonified: Eric. He ''really'' hits his stride as the most entertaining part of the show after he doesn't get into college at the end of Season 3, then has crossed over into just downright ''weird'' by the time he cuts his hair in Season 7.
* GeneHunting: In "Family Trees", Shawn gets a letter from his MissingMom in which she reveals that she is not his real mother. He proceeds to try to track his real mother, and is unsuccessful in doing so. His father later appears to him in a vision and says that his biological mom was a stripper who took off after giving birth to him, though it's unclear if this vision was real or all in Shawn's head.
* GenerationXerox: Cory and Topanga marry young; so did their parents.
* GeniusDitz: Eric is so ditzy it's a wonder he can feed and bathe himself. However, the series is full of episodes where it turns out Eric possesses hidden insight and depth and that his behavior is more a result of his combined eccentricity and inability to apply himself and reach his true potential. And then everyone feels all bad about underestimating him.
* GenreSavvy:
** Shawn in the season 5 Halloween special that spoofed the recent spate of slasher films at the box office - He correctly points out everything that will happen.
** Shawn also is sure that Topanga won't end up moving away because that never happens in these episodes. He's sort of right, as she moves away but then comes back in the second part.
*** At the end of the first part Shawn asks what type of Tv show this is when it appears Topanga ins't coming back.
** In ''16 Candles and a 400 pound man"'' Cory argues with Shawn about the time Fred Flinstone spent between his two obligations. Shawn points out that he never spent more than 75 seconds in one place. Cory points out that tv Shows condense things, but Shawn argues, Its the same exact thing and to just trust him.
** Shawn may very well be acutely aware that he's in a sit com.
* GentleGiant: Frankie was ultimately revealed to be this when he has a good influence.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar:
** In 2x01, noticing Topanga's, um...blouse, Shawn points out that the summer had been good to her, she rips of Shawn's fake sideburns and points out, "Yeah, well, at least what I grew is real!"
** From 2x06, when Cory starts going through puberty, he says "I've got hair on my chin, on my chest, and other places where I don't see having hair on is really gonna help me!"
** From season 2, after Shawn gets through making out with a girl:
-->'''Shawn:''' Remember in health class that section on the movement of blood? I understand it now.
** Also from season 2, when Shawn briefly lives in a NoTellMotel after his father leaves:
-->'''Shawn:''' Why don't you come over tonight? We can skateboard in the pool, and they got cable."
-->'''Cory:''' ''We'' got cable.
-->'''Shawn:''' (smiling) Not like this place.
** In 3x03 Shawn comments on Cory's "big hands" while Shawn's pretending to be Topanga.
** In 5x15, when Shawn's ex-girlfriend [[ItMakesSenseInContext handcuffs him to a pipe]], he says "Wow, ''your'' tastes have changed since our last date when we went skating."
** In 6x06 Eric, with a devious look on his face, asks Rachel "Actually, do you have a picture of your mother? [[ADateWithRosiePalms No reason]]."
** Happened more and more as the series went on. One HalloweenEpisode (which included an {{Homage}} to ''Film/{{Scream|1996}}'') involved a discussion of [[SexEqualsDeath who was a virgin and who wasn't]]. Shawn [[TechnicalVirgin will get as sick as you can without actually dying]]. Meanwhile, Cory nudges Topanga and says "[[AManIsNotAVirgin Hey, thanks for saving me]]".
* GhostExtras: The other students in Cory, Shawn and Topanga's classes often seemed to be in a whole different place altogether. They never interacted with the main characters or reacted much when the main characters made a scene in class, and the teachers (Mr. Feeny or Mr. Turner) would only call on Cory, Shawn or Topanga in class and were never seen talking with the other students. The latter point was lampshaded in the series finale:
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' I regard all my students equally.
-->'''Shawn:''' You know we're your favorites.
-->'''Cory:''' Come on Feeny, you haven't even talked to another student for seven years.
* GilliganCut: In "Chick Like Me", when Shawn refuses to dress up as a girl, it cuts to the next day at school where Shawn is dressed as a girl.
* GirlNextDoor: Topanga, at least after her character was retooled in season two.
* GlobalIgnorance: In one episode Shawn thinks that you can get to Europe on a bus. He even buys a bus ticket to Paris, Texas think it will take him to Paris, France. This was from the period on the show where Shawn TookALevelInDumbass.
* GoodParents: Cory's parents
* GoodPeopleHaveGoodSex: Implied about the Matthews parents. Also Cory and Topanga themselves once they get married.
* GoshDangItToHeck: Averted, kind of. Later seasons had scattered utterings of "hell" and "damn." Jack even once called Eric a "jackass." One theory is that the audience who were kids when they started watching were now grown up and swear themselves.
** The season 4 premiere "You Can Go Home Again" has the first curse word uttered in the series when Mr. Feeny sees Alan and Amy sitting on the back porch and says [[PrecisionFStrike "What the hell are we looking at?"]]
** When Eric thinks Feeny is moving to Hawaii, Feeny says "That's one bitchin' board bro."
* GossipEvolution: In "She's Having My Baby Back Ribs", a rumor goes from "Topanga is pregnant" to "Cory and Topanga are looking to adopt a kid from China and need to overcome the language barrier". When Mr. Feeny informs Cory of this, he gives the original rumor in front of his parents, prompting Feeny to leave so that he may "inform the grocer about his misinformation." Point of reference: Topanga was never pregnant, but just going on a diet.
* GranolaGirl: Topanga in the first season. The {{Retool}} in the second season removed most of these elements, but they weren't totally gone until she started dating Cory in season three.
* GroundedForever: PlayedForLaughs. There was a significant gap in between the [[TheOtherDarrin two actresses]] playing Morgan, resulting the character being absent for about half a season. The new actress is introduced by coming downstairs and remarking, "That was the longest time-out I've ever had."
* HalloweenEpisode: "Boys II Mensa", "Who's Afraid of Cory Wolf?" and "The Witches of Pennbrook".
** Subverted by the slasher [[TheParody parody]] "And Then There Was Shawn", which despite the horror theme and since becoming something of a Halloween staple in reruns, originally aired during [[{{Sweeps}} February Sweeps]].
* HappierHomeMovie: In "Wheels", Mr. Matthews watches videos of Cory as a kid after Cory gets his driver's license and decides to spend his birthday with his friends instead of his family. The videos appear to be Ben Savage's actual home movies with overdubbed audio by the actors who play Mr. and Mrs. Matthews.
* HappilyEverAfter: Cory and Topanga
* HappilyMarried: Cory's parents. Cory and Topanga, eventually.
* HeartbeatSoundtrack: Used and lampshaded in the horror movie episode:
-->''Thub-thub... thub-thub...''
-->'''Angela:''' Alright, you're the horror film expert, what's that?
-->'''Shawn:''' That's the sound of our beating hearts. It signifies our heightened fear, and the fact that something horrible is about to walk in that door, right NOW!
-->''(door opens, revealing Eric and Jack standing there)''
** Also in the episode "The Fugitive" (Season 1 episode 17) appropriately as Feeny is reading a passage from ''TheTellTaleHeart''.
* HeartwarmingOrphan: Tommy from season 6.
* HeelFaceTurn: One of the bullies Frankie eventually quits harassing Cory and Shawn and becomes their friend.
* TheHermit: In "Seven the Hard Way" Eric imagines himself as one in the future.
* HeterosexualLifePartners:
** Cory and Shawn. More often than not, theirs is [[OneTruePairing the relationship with the most depth]], with Cory's relationship with Topanga taking the back seat. In fact, she's occasionally jealous and jokingly calls Shawn Cory's "lover". [[spoiler: At the end of the series, he goes with them to New York.]]
--> '''Cory''': Shawn, are you there?
--> '''Shawn''': Yeah, [[HoYay I was just listening to the sound of your voice]], [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything and thinking about the old days]].
** Jack and Eric:
--> '''Jack:''' (several times) What is this power you have over me?
* HiddenDepths:
** Shawn went from trashy comic relief to a [[TheWoobie woobie]] who got [[ChickMagnet all the girls]] and in the college years he eventually grew into the deepest and possibly most well-developed character on the show.
** As dumb as he was, Eric was probably one of the wiser characters. Mr Feeny often tries to get Eric to reach his full potential, with one such example being when Feeny has Eric tutor an F student, with the hope that Eric's attempts to get through to the student he was tutoring would benefit Eric as well. Eric not only raises the other student's grade to a C, but aces the test himself.
* HighSchoolHustler: The minor recurring character Griff Hawkins.
* HilariousOuttakes: During TheTag of the episode "Angela's Men", the outtakes replace the scene itself because the cast couldn't get through it without {{corpsing}}.
* HollywoodNerd: Minkus in the first season is classic Type 1; Topanga, after [[CharacterDevelopment evolving]] out of the GranolaGirl role, becomes classic Type 2.
* {{Homage}}: In the episode "QuizShow", Cory and Shawn become Quiz Bowl stars when the show is revamped to be popular to kids. When the producers want them gone, the show went back to its old format of {{Unexpectedly Obscure Answer}}s. Which is how the manipulation went behind the show ''TwentyOne'', as depicted in the movie the ep is named after (minus actually giving answers to the contestants, of course).
* HomoeroticSubtext: Cory and Shawn. Topanga and other characters point this out relentlessly, especially in the episode "Seven the Hard Way".
-->'''Topanga:''' You should ask Shawn, his luvah!
** See WrongNameOutburst and ComicRolePlay for more examples.
** One episode even opened a scene with the two of them in bed together! [[spoiler: Stop it, nothing happened]].
** One episode intentionally played on this when Shawn's new girlfriend forbids him from seeing Cory ever again, which among other things leads to an overemotional phone conversation between Shawn and Cory that leaves Eric staring at him open-mouthed before declaring "I want my own room."
** The episode "It's Not You, It's Me..." was basically dedicated to this.
*** As was "An Affair to Forget."
** This exchange from "I Love You, Donna Karan":
-->'''Topanga:''' Shawn, you're afraid to make commitment.
-->'''Shawn:''' I'm not afraid to make a commitment, I've been with Cory for 15 years!
-->'''Cory:''' Ah, they've been good years.
-->'''Shawn:''' You worked very hard at them.
-->'''Cory:''' Hey, it takes two. You know...
-->'''Topanga:''' Stop it!
** When they get drunk in "If You Can't Be with the One You Love...", they become a more open about their feeling towards one another:
-->'''Cory:''' You know what Shawnie, I always thought that Topanga was the one person I could never live without. But she's gone, and, and you're here, and I'm alive, so it must be you!
-->'''Shawn:''' I'd take a bullet for you.
-->'''Cory:''' Shawnie, I love you!
-->''[hugs him]''
-->'''Shawn:''' Yeah, I love you too Cory, and I'm not ashamed.
-->''[homeless man stares at them]''
-->'''Shawn:''' Now I'm ashamed.
** At Cory & Topanga's wedding, Shawn was the best man... And stood at the altar with Cory, their arms around one another. You'd almost think it was ''their'' wedding...
** In the finale, Cory & Topanga [[spoiler:get ready to move to New York for Topanga's new job]], and Shawn is ''very'' upset about [[spoiler:Cory leaving]], with the show playing this for laughs since Shawn's ''acting as if he was Cory's lover who was being abandoned''. Then Topanga [[spoiler:reveals that she'd packed Shawn's bags too, since she couldn't bear to tear them apart]].
** Jack and Eric also had a lot of this, starting right after they first meet:
-->'''Cory:''' You and Jack are so perfect for each other, you should be married!
-->'''Eric:''' I'm not ready.
** Eric's obsession with Mr. Feeny got quite... ''weird'' at times, especially in the graduation episode when he affectionately lays on Feeny's lap singing "To Sir, With Love" (much to Feeny's horror).
* HopeSpot: [[spoiler: The last few moments with Chet, Shawn and Jack; where Chet promises they'll be a real family from that moment on]].
* HorribleHollywood: When Eric goes to Hollywood be a cast member of the SelfParody show ''Kid Gets Acquainted with the Universe'', he finds out that the actors on the show are either {{jerkass}}es or highly neurotic, the so-called "best writers in town" are actually small children, and the scripts are [[RecycledScript recycled]] many times and full of StylisticSuck.
* {{Hypocrite}}: Stuart, an Ethics professor, crosses the ethical line between students & teachers when he makes a move on Topanga.
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: Many are based off of puns from movies, music and books titles, popular sayings, etc.
* IdiotSavant: There's a throwaway gag in one episode in which Shawn claims to be one of these after revealing he can speak French. This was during the period in the show where he got really dumb, which didn't stick as a character trait so this is never brought up again.
* IfWeGetThroughThis: Shawn's father, in the hospital after a heart attack, promises his sons that he will stay with them for good after he recovers. [[spoiler: He promptly dies]].
* IKnowYouKnowIKnow: Played with in one episode. Cory thinks that Mr. Feeny knows that Topanga proposed to him, even though Mr. Feeny doesn't know:
-->'''Cory:''' Ohhhhh, you're a smug one aren't you George huh. You know you know, I know you know, I don't know how you know, but I know that you know.
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' Alright I know, I know everything. Now what in the world are you talking about?
-->'''Cory:''' NOTHING!! THIS GETS OUT, I'LL HUNT YOU DOWN LIKE A DOG!!
* TheILoveYouStigma: This is the focus of the episode "What I Meant to Say". Cory tells Topanga he loves her despite the fact that they had only (officially) been going out for a few weeks and Topanga reacts with shocks and leaves immediately. She later breaks up with him and starts avoiding him. Cory confronts her about the issue and she explains that she was scared of those words and what they meant. Cory explains what exactly he means by "I love you," and she replies that she loves him, too.
* ImMrFuturePopCultureReference: In "I Was a Teenage Spy", when Cory has a dream where he is sent back in time to the 50s, he introduces himself to the Mr. Feeny {{Expy}} as "BradPitt, sir.", only for Feeny to respond "Well, Mr. Pittser...".
* ImportantHaircut:
** {{Enforced}} in Topanga's case. Danielle Fishel wanted to get a haircut, but the producers didn't want Topanga to lose her trademark locks. The only way they would allow it is if Topanga getting a haircut was made into a major story point, which became the second episode of the 4th season.
** Eric gets one at the beginning of season seven. He even lampshades it.
--->'''Eric:''' EVERYONE LOOK AT MY HEAD!
* ImStandingRightHere: From "Hogs and Kisses":
-->'''Jack:''' If she's telling the truth our lives are perfect!
-->'''Eric:''' Well she's not. She's testing us, just stick with the plan.
-->'''Rachel:''' Stop! Stop planning, and oh stop acting like I can't hear you!
* IncomingHam: Eric enters season 7 this way. He jumps on the student center pool table and yells "EVERYBODY LOOK AT MY HEAD!" (because he got an ImportantHaircut). This sets the tone for his [[{{Flanderization}} every more over the top]] {{Cloudcuckoolander}} personality that season.
* INeverGotAnyLetters: (Part of) why Shawn was initially so angry at Jack, and also why he eventually gave him a chance.
* InstrumentalThemeTune: The show had a different one each season for seasons 1-4 before switching over to a ThematicThemeTune for Seasons 5-7.
* InadvertentEntranceCue:
** Used as a RuleOfThree RunningGag in the episode "Her Answer". Alan and Amy are up in the middle of the night and Alan says that they should go to bed because "only creeps and weirdos are up now". Eric then walks in the door. Eric then says the exact same thing and Shawn walks in the door. Then Shawn says it and Mr. Feeny walks in the door.
** Used twice in "Train of Fools": Mrs. Matthews says "Now guys, be careful tonight, you know new years eve brings out all the crazies.", and then Shawn burst through the door saying "Come on everybody, let's get crazy!". Later, Cory says "You'd have to be an idiot to have a good time down here", and then Shawn walks in with a party hat on and says "I don't know about you guys, but I am having a ''great'' time."
* InterruptedIntimacy: A comically extreme example: Cory and Topanga are about to consummate their marriage when the police burst in to the hotel suite and arrest them (because they inadvertently stole someone else's wedding thanks to Eric).
* InventionPretension: In "Career Day", Shawn's father comes to the class's career day at school and makes a pathetic attempt to hide what a bum he is by making a number of audacious claims, including claiming to have invented CNN.
* IronicEchoCut: From "Train of Fools":
-->'''Cory:''' Oh Eric, don't you worry about that, I'm not gonna do anything stupid.
-->''(cut to next scene)''
-->'''Eric:''' Cory, how could you do something so stupid?
* ItsNotYouItsMe: Shawn says this to Cory when they "[[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything break up]]" their friendship in the episode appropriately titled "It's Not You, It's Me".
* ItsWhatIDo: Upon warning Cory that Topanga is about to become more beautiful after going to a salon, Shawn tells him that she'll dump Cory and hang out with other beautiful people because "It's what we do."
* ItWillNeverCatchOn: In the NoirEpisode, which is set in a {{Casablanca}}-like setting and time period, the Jack counterpart, a bar pianist, overhears someone [[WaxingLyrical say]] "[[JudyGarland Forget your troubles, come on, get happy]]" and says "That could be a song!" then pauses and says "Naah". He later overhears someone say "[[BritneySpears Hit me baby one more time]]" and has the exact same reaction.
* IvyLeagueForEveryone: With Topanga's admittance to Yale, then her decision to attend [[CaliforniaUniversity Pennbrook College]] with Cory and their friends.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy: After Jack and Rachel get together, Eric moves out of the apartment for awhile to let them explore their relationship. He later insists that he was never really in love with Rachel, and more interested in the competition with Jack, but there are hints that he's still very much attracted to her.
** "RACHEL!"
* IWasToldThereWouldBeCake: Feeny bribes Shawn with cake to take his SAT prep course.
* KarmaHoudini: Stuart the titular professor from the episode ''Everybody Loves Stuart'' gets no more than a chewing out from the Dean after trying to make a move on Topanga and making it clear to Cory he's not going to stop.
* KnightOfCerebus: Chet Hunter, who seems to exist solely to provide Shawn with more {{angst}}. His initial appearances (at the end of season two) were to kick off the show's first major StoryArc: Shawn moving in with Mr. Turner (which lasted for most of the third season).
* KnowWhenToFoldThem: In one episode, Shawn entered a contest to win Superbowl tickets. The contest was to stand on billboard during winter and outlast everyone else and he makes it down to the last one, but there's a problem. That last one is an eskimo, who is so unbothered by the bitter cold, ''that he's eating an ice cream cone''. He even sings along with the host's radio: "We are warm and you are cold." He wisely decides to step down.
* KidAnova: Shawn. Also a ChickMagnet. He also managed to avert AManIsNotAVirgin for almost as long as his best friend Cory (see below) did.
* LamazeClass: In "Cutting the Cord", Eric fills in for his father at one of these classes with his mom, and then when his dad arrives he becomes the partner of another woman in the class whose husband is off in the navy. HilarityEnsues, naturally, because Eric is TheDitz.
* LameComeback: In "Honesty Night", Cory and Topanga [[ItMakesSenseInContext pretend to be mad at each other in front of Shawn]] and when they trade fake insults Cory proves he's not very good at ending them:
-->'''Topanga:''' I can't believe you said that to me, you stunted little whiny brillo-head!
-->'''Cory:''' Oh yeah, well you're a short little nasal voiced blimpo lipped... so and so! ''(whispering)'' I need more time.
* LampshadeHanging: A whole lot of it. Along with all the examples listed elsewhere on this page, there was an example of this in the episode "State of the Unions" that lampshaded the fact that Eric and Shawn rarely had any scenes together despite living together for a year, since Rider Strong and Will Friedle could ''not'' keep it together when their characters interacted outside of the more somber scenes, so the writers tried to keep Eric and Shawn from interacting.
-->'''Eric:''' Yeah... We never really talk or hang out
-->'''Shawn:''' I know, not even during that year we lived together...
-->'''Both:''' *AsideGlance*
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall: Many instances, most notably in the graduation episode when Cory and Shawn run into childhood friend Minkus, who was absent for the past couple of seasons.
-->'''Minkus:''' For the last four years it's like I have even been in the same school as you guys.
-->'''Shawn:''' Well you know we just never saw you around.
-->'''Minkus:''' I was, I was just in the other part of the school.
-->'''Shawn:''' What other part of the school?
-->'''Minkus:''' You know, over there. [point off camera towards the audience]
-->'''Cory:''' Oh, we don't go over there.
-->'''Shawn:''' Yeah, if you go over there you may never come back.
-->'''Minkus:''' Oh, that's crazy. [waving to someone off camera] Hey, Mr. Turner! Wait up![[note]]This line itself refers to another character who disappeared for a while, Mr. Turner, who at one point took Shawn in while his father straightened his life out. He hadn't been seen since the previous season's "Cult Fiction" in which he was involved in a serious motorcycle accident, leading to the theory amongst fans that Turner had actually died from his injuries.[[/note]]
** A scene from "Shallow Boy" was used by the writers to criticize ABC changing the show's time slot from 8:30 to 9:30. Topanga is babysitting a boy named Billy and Cory drops by for a visit. Billy wants to stay up to watch the Friday Night Line-Up (which Cory considers to have "the best shows on TV")--particularly a show about a curly-headed kid who "keeps on digging himself in deeper and deeper."
--->'''Billy:''' It use to be on at 8:30, but this year they moved it to 9:30. Those idiots.\\
'''Cory:''' Wait a minute. They moved that show to 9:30? Why?\\
'''Billy:''' No one knows.\\
'''Cory:''' Well, was it doing badly at 8:30?\\
'''Billy:''' No.\\
'''Cory:''' Well, why didn't they leave it alone?\\
'''Billy:''' They're trying to kill it! They're trying to kill it!\\
'''Cory:''' Those are bad, bad people.
* LeftTheBackgroundMusicOn: In "Everybody Loves Stuart", Eric dramatically enters a student hearing like he is a big-time lawyer while the theme from ''ThePeoplesCourt'' plays in the background. He then opens up his briefcase and turns off the tape recorder playing the music.
* LetsWaitAwhile: Cory and Topanga (much to Cory's frustration).
* LightsOffSomebodyDies: Used in "And Then There Was Shawn".
* LimitedSocialCircle: For a lot of the show's run it is just Cory, Shawn and Topanga. Cory is a CoolLoser, and it is implied that Cory and Shawn [[HeterosexualLifePartners spend so much time with each other]] that they don't make time for other friends. In Topanga's case it is sometimes alluded to that she has other friends but they are never actually seen. In a couple of episodes in season three she has a weirdo best friend named Trini (played by a pre-fame BrittanyMurphy), but that character is [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome dropped]]. When Angela becomes Shawn's girlfriend in season five she joins their social circle and eventually becomes Topanga's best friend and roommate. When they all go to college, they form more of a social circle with Eric, Jack and Rachel.
* LineOfSightName:
** In "Band on the Run", Cory comes up with a name for his band this way. He considers "Blood Drive" and "Sex Ed" before choosing "The Exits".
** In "Fraternity Row", Eric makes up a fake fraternity so that he can have a fraternity party. When the Dean asks him the name, he sees a kid in a ''MagnumPI'' shirt, and thus replies "Magnum Pi".
* LivingProp: Most of the other students in the main characters' classes. See GhostExtras.
* LocalHangout: Chubbie's for seasons 2 through 5, later replaced by the Pennbrook University student lounge.
* LongLostSibling: Jack
* LoveBeforeFirstSight: In the episode "I Love You, Donna Karan", Shawn finds a lost purse at school without an I.D. in it and he becomes attracted to the purse's owner based on its contents because they reveal that he and the owner have very similar interests. It turns out that the purse's owner is [[spoiler: Angela, a classmate he has just broken up with]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tropes M-Z]]
* MadLibsCatchphrase: Early on Cory frequently said "I'm [whatever's being discussed] Boy!"
* TheMagazineRule: In one episode Eric subscribes to 26 different magazines, each one's title beginning with a different letter of the alphabet, as part of poorly thought out attempt to game the Publisher's Clearing House contest. Among these magazines is ''Chester'', a magazine for people named Chester (Eric had to lie about his name to get the subscription).
* MakeOutKids: Shawn and Angela become like this for an episode after they back together.
* MakeUpOrBreakUp: Every couple in the show, except for HappilyMarried Alan and Amy, go through this arc, often more than once:
** Cory and Topanga: ''Three times''. In season 3, after dating for most of the season, they break up, then get back together in the season finale; in season 5, they break up after Cory kisses another girl, but get back together [[ItMakesSenseInContext after Topanga kisses another guy]]; in season 7, they break up after Topanga's parents do, because she's lost faith in true love, but they get back together and finally get married after that.
** Shawn and Angela: Twice. In season 5, Shawn and Angela agree to cool things off after Shawn's KidANova past comes back to haunt them, but they soon reconcile; in season 6, Shawn dumps Angela because he's insecure, and they stay apart for ''the whole season'', but get back together early in the seventh. At the end of the series, Angela leaves for Europe with her father but she and Shawn still say they love each other and agree to continue their relationship long-distance.
** Jack and Rachel: Only once, and surprisingly, they break up and stay that way, though they do leave with the Peace Corps together in the series finale.
* {{Malaproper}}: From the episode "The Grass Is Always Greener":
-->'''Shawn:''' "Cory, I'm no rocket Scientologist but... I'm sensing there's something wrong."
** Shawn gets MANY of these during his dumb period. From "Cyrano":
-->'''Shawn:''' "Without witnesses, it's all just circumcised evidence!"
* ManHug: Practically required in a series where the main characters include two pairs of male HeterosexualLifePartners and two pairs of brothers.
* AManIsAlwaysEager: Cory feels ready to have sex, and is frustrated when Topanga decides to wait until marriage. To his credit, though, he ''does'' wait, even when presented with opportunities with other women.
* AManIsNotAVirgin: In the Season 5 Halloween special, GenreSavvy Shawn points out that only virgins survive slasher movies. Eric and Jack proudly accept they're going to die, while Cory thanks Topanga for saving his life. Eric & Shawn then realize that Feeny had just been killed, so start dancing in his memory:
--->"Go Feeny!"
* TheMatchmaker: Shawn takes up this role for a while when Cory and Topanga broke up, with a lot of people commenting he took the breakup harder than they did, and being the number one champion of the get-back-together cause. In a later episode this is reversed, where Cory becomes obsessed with getting Shawn and Angela back together.
* MaybeMagicMaybeMundane: In Halloween episode "The Witches of Pennbrook", left unclear if those girls were really witches and if the light beam they try to use for sacrifice was real or not. Eric actually says something similar to the trope name when discussing it.
-->'''Jack:''' Eric, I saw the light beam was that real?
-->'''Eric:''' Jack, maybe it was and maybe it wasn't. There are some things just too big for our puny heads to comprehend.
* MeaningfulBackgroundEvent: In "Everybody Loves Stuart" the characters are sitting around in the student center having a comedic conversation while Cory gets in a fight with his teacher in the patio outside. The event is brought to the foreground when Cory shoves the teacher through the doorway.
* MediumAwareness:
** In one episode Cory gets caught in a TwoTimerDate scenario and Shawn teaches him to play it out like Fred did in one episode of ''TheFlintstones'', leading to this exchange:
-->'''Shawn:''' ...and Fred never spent more than 75 seconds at either location.
-->'''Cory:''' Shawn, that was a cartoon, [[CartoonlandTime time was compressed]], [[ThisIsReality we're real, we're in real time]].
-->'''Shawn:''' Trust me, it's the same thing.
-->'''Cory:''' No it's not. You see a television show can cover many days in only one half-hour program.
-->'''Shawn:''' ''Trust'' me, it's the same thing.
** In "They're Killing Us", Cory says that he wants to get married "next Friday night at 8:00, 7 central". Guess what the show's timeslot was?
* MenCantKeepHouse: It's occasionally mentioned that Jack and Eric are slobs, Ironically the girl's attempt to decorate the apartment when they stole it from them made it even more cluttered and messy. [[DoubleStandard This is never brought up]].
** This is averted when Rachel moves in with Eric and Jack. They go out of their way to keep everything neat and clean and adopt fake manners to impress her. She objects and demands that they act the same way they normally would when she's around.
* MiddleChildSyndrome: Cory suffers from this early on. It diminishes after Eric gets dumber and becomes TheUnfavorite.
* MidlifeCrisisCar: Alan Matthews wants to get a midlife crisis motorcycle in "Cutting the Cord" but decides against it by the end of the episode.
* MistakenForCheating: In "Once in Love with Amy", Cory and Eric find out that their mom is sneaking off to have a romantic dinner with a mysterious man... who turns out to be their dad.
* MistakenForPregnant: Topanga in "She's Having My Baby Back Ribs", who was just going on a diet. This mistake happens via a OneDialogueTwoConversations.
* MoebiusNeighborhood: The Matthews live next to Mr. Feeny... and no one else. Likewise, Mr. Feeny doesn't appear to have anyone on ''his'' other side, either.
* MoodWhiplash: Especially prominent in the more serious episodes when a comedy relief scene is injected between the serious scenes.
** Notably, the episode when Joshua is born prematurely & the entire cast is at the hospital, and Shawn returns once he hears what's happened - Cory & Shawn immediately start joking around. It's even lampshaded by Topanga as inappropriate, while Mr. Feeny argues it's exactly the sort of thing Cory needed at the moment.
--> '''Shawn:''' Maybe he'll meet a kid like me...
--> '''Cory:''' He won't need to, YOU'LL STILL BE THERE!
** The first mood whiplash episode Teacher's Bet starts out normally with Cory acting like his normal self, about halfway through the episode movies intro AVerySpecialEpisode territory addressing the topic of prejudice
** In the episode "Dangerous Secret", Cory finds out that a girl spent the night at Shawn's house so he assumes that Shawn has started having sex, and HilarityEnsues when he unsuccessfully tries to do the same thing with Topanga. Then midway through the episode Shawn reveals that the girl was staying at his house because her dad hits her, and it turns into a VerySpecialEpisode complete with a PSA at the end.
** Within the same ''character'' in "Seven The Hard Way". When Eric enters after the time skip, he's become a hermit named Plays With Squirrels. There's some humorous interactions and it turns out he married a moose, but he has the best insight into everybody's issues.
** The most humorous episodes tend to immediately follow the most serious. For example, "Eric Hollywood" (where [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Eric goes to Hollywood]] to appear on an {{Expy}} of the show as an expy of himself) comes right after "If You Can't Be With The One You Love ...", which is often not shown in syndication due to its depiction of teen drinking.
* MsFanservice: Rachel, especially considering the male characters' reaction to her.
* MysteryBox: In "Prom-ises, Prom-ises", Eric tries to bride a hotel desk clerk with a "mystery bag".
* NameOne: From the episode "Cyrano":
-->'''Gloria:''' Name one thing you got me that ever made me feel special.
-->'''Harley:''' Tires. Steel belted.
* NiceCharacterMeanActor: The lead actor on ''Kid Gets Acquainted with the Universe''.
* NewYearSameClass: Done with Cory, Shawn and Topanga in the first episode of season two and mentioned briefly in the first episode of season three. Every year after that they continued to be in the same class together but this is never addressed again in-show.
* NoirEpisode: "As Time Goes By", complete with a DeliberatelyMonochrome picture and a PrivateEyeMonologue by Eric.
* NoodleIncident: From "Heartbreak Cory", when the characters are going on their school's senior ski trip:
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' Now remember, I don't want another incident like last year's fiasco in the Amish country.
-->''<{{Beat}}>''
-->'''Cory:''' Why's everyone looking at me?
* NoSparks: This happens at least twice:
** Topanga and Cory had broken up. She goes on a date with another guy, and when he kisses her she feels nothing and realizes Cory is her soulmate.
** Shawn and Topanga kiss for a film project and Cory gets extremely jealous. Angela (Shawn's ex-girlfriend) tries to convince him it didn't mean anything, but ends up having to throw him down on the bed and lay one on him to show him that it's different with someone other than your one true love.
* NothingCanStopUsNow: Said by Alan after he sells a tent ''after'' TheBlairWitchProject [[ItMakesSenseInContext has been released]]. Then Eric decides to "join the family business." Causing Alan [[LittleNo this reaction]].
* NotSoAboveItAll: Mr. Feeny at times.
** Topanga sometimes gets willingly dragged into Cory and Shawn's antics and doesn't protest. Most notably in ''Quiz Show''
* NotWhatItLooksLike: In one episode Cory and Topanga are working late on a project at school and they [[SleepCute happen to fall asleep next to each other in the same room]]. When other students see them the next morning they think they had sex.
* NowDoItAgainBackwards: Subverted in "I Was a Teenage Spy". An accident with a microwave oven throws Cory back to the 1950s, and a Wise Old Man tells him that to get back, he just needs to recreate the circumstances of the accident. There's just one problem, as Cory points out: there were no microwave ovens in the 1950s. Luckily for Cory, it was AllJustADream.
* ObfuscatingStupidity: There's evidence that some of Eric's stupidity and wackiness is put on, sometimes to get out of work, but mostly for his own enjoyment.
* OfficialCouple: Cory and Topanga.
* OffTheWagon: Shawn drinks again in season 7 after [[spoiler: he finds out his mom isn't his birth mother]]. He appears drunk, but it's only mentioned by Jack he shouldn't be drinking. It's easy to miss.
* OneHeadTaller: Gender-flipped with Rachel and Jack. And Cory, Shawn & Eric, for that matter.
* OnlyKnownByTheirNickname: [[spoiler:Cornelius Matthews]].
* OrWasItADream: The episode "And Then There Was Shawn" turned out [[spoiler: to be an extended dream Shawn was having of some maniac in a skull mask killing everyone in detention to make sure Cory and Topanga stayed together. The killer was revealed to be Shawn... by Shawn. After he wakes up and everyone leaves Mr. Feeny's classroom... the killer emerges from behind the computer stand and departs the room]].
* OutOfFocus: After Shawn and Topanga proved to be BreakOutCharacters and Mr. Turner was introduced, Corey and Eric's family pretty much got pushed out of the limelight. Morgan was even briefly got the ChuckCunninghamSyndrome before the writers brought her back. By the time the cast went to college, Alan and Amy were only to around to give advice to the newly married Corey.
** Topanga after ''Fear Strikes Out'' the 9th episode, doesn't get much focus in season 2 Her other appearances after that are minimal and have little impact on the plot.
* PapaWolf: Alan Matthews
* ParentExMachina
* ParentalAbandonment: Shawn. His mother takes off (taking the family trailer with her) and his father goes off after her leaving Shawn to the Matthews and later Mr. Turner. Both his parents return and stay together as a family for a while but then his mother takes off, again and his father follows after her, again. [[spoiler: Eventually Mr. Hunter dies and Vera sends Shawn a letter (from Honduras) telling him that she is not his biological mother. Shawn later learns (from his father's ghost no less) that his "real" mom was a stripper that abandoned the family very shortly after he was born]].
* ParentalFavoritism: Alan towards Eric and Amy towards Cory. In the case with former, [[DeconstructedTrope it gets deconstructed]]. Eric in later seasons ends up becoming to accustomed to being coddled by his dad, and doesn't have the work ethic that Corey has.
* ParentalIssues: Mostly Shawn again, though Topanga gets her share when her parents divorce, leading her to call off her engagement with Cory.
* ParentalMarriageVeto: In the 6th season opener, Cory and Topanga want to get married after she proposed to him at their high school graduation. Everyone tries to fake being happy for them until Cory's mother reveals that she's completely against it ("This is a mistake, and I do not support it. Why couldn't you [Topanga] have just gone to Yale?") However, this is not because she does not like Topanga, it is because she thinks they are way too young. Fortunately for everyone, Cory and Topanga decide not to go through with it after all and wait until they feel more ready.
* ParodyEpisode: The "Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe" episode (see ShowWithinAShow)
** Not to mention the excellent ''Scream'' parody episode.
** The episode "And in Case I Don't See Ya..." parodies, of all things, ''Film/TheTrumanShow''. Yes, it's quite weird.
* PickUpBabesWithBabes: In "The Truth About Honesty", Eric pretends that his baby brother Josh is his own son to pick up a girl. The lies just escalate from there.
* PlayingCyrano: In the episode appropriately titled "Cyrano" Cory and Shawn are forced to help Frankie in his "wooing" of Harley's girlfriend.
* ProWrestlingEpisode: "The Thrilla in Philla" and "Sixteen Candles and Four-Hundred-Pound Men".
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: Danielle Fishel in season 2, Lindsay Ridgeway in season 4, and Trina [=McGee=]-Davis in season 6.
* PsychoExGirlfriend: In "The First Girlfriends Club", Shawn becomes the target of ''three'' of these.
* PsychologistTeacher: Mr. Feeny
* PunBasedTitle: The show's title is a pun on the expression "BoyMeetsGirl". Also, several episodes have this type of title, such as "No Guts, No Cory".
* PunchPunchPunchUhOh: In "Brotherly Shove", during a garage sale at the Matthews', Cory pisses a guy off enough to cause him to punch his lights out. Nearby and witness to it, Eric responds by repeatedly whaling on the guy's stomach no less than seven times, obviously as hard as he can. Ineffective.
* PunctuatedForEmphasis: In the scene mentioned above, [[BigBrotherInstinct "THAT'S! MY! BROTHER! NOBODY! HITS! MY! BROTHER!"]]
* PuppyLove: Morgan and Frankie's little brother Herman look like they could have this in season four. [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome Unfortunately, we never see the latter again]].
* PutOnABus: Most of the characters who don't suffer from ChuckCunninghamSyndrome - Harley was sent away to military school in the third season (but returned for one episode). [[spoiler: Angela]] also leaves several episodes before the final episode.
* RadioContest: Shawn enters one to get SuperBowl tickets. However, he finds out the contest involves standing on a billboard platform for the longest amount of time, in the middle of the Philadelphia winter. And one of contestants is an eskimo.
* ReadyForLovemaking: In "Getting Hitched", Cory tries to do this for Topanga when he thinks she is finally willing to have sex with him. Unfortunately, Eric walks into his dorm room before she does.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Mr Feeny & Mr Turner.
* RecycledSet:
** With just a light remodel Mr. Turner's apartment from seasons 2 and 3 becomes Jack and Eric's apartment for season 5-7
** For a little while Mr Turner and Mr Feeny had the same classroom, just flipped around with a few different props.
** The school hallway from seasons 2-4 is almost exactley the same as the Senior hallway from season 5 but shot from a different angle.
** The door at the end of the hallway has different purposes depending on the episode. Sometimes it serves as Mr Feeny's office, the Boys Restroom, or in one episode the office of the Guidance Counselor.
** Restaurants tend to be reused as well. The restaurant in "You Can Go Home Again" is basically reused in "Road Trip". Chubbie's (the local hangout) is used for pretty much anywhere groups of teens hang out. This is lampshaded in "Things Change", as the restaurant is changed into a pirate-themed family restaurant in the course of one scene.
* RelationshipUpgrade: Cory and Topanga in "My Best Friend's Girl".
* {{Retcon}}: Goes hand and hand with the {{Retool}} described below. Because the series went through so many, the continuity of the show was never stable. At the start of the series, Corey was 6th grader while Eric was a Sophomore in High School. At some point during High School Corey, Shawn, and Topanga got aged up two years. In later series, the show also rewrote how romantic Corey and Topanga was. In the first season, Corey wasn't friends with her while the later seasons would have you believe they were inseparable since the age of 2. Topanga's hippy upbringing was also forgotten save for one CallBack.
* {{Retool}}: ''Boy Meets World'' got retooled '''three''' times of the course of its run:
** Season 2: Cory, Topanga, and Shawn start going to John Adams High. Mr. Feeny follows them. Eric has a much larger role, and begins to take on TheDitz traits of his "modern" persona. Topanga abandons her GranolaGirl roots and becomes a HollywoodNerd. More of Shawn's [[ParentalAbandonment home life]] is revealed. Mr. Turner, "the bullies," and [[LocalHangout Chubbie's]] are introduced. Also, the show loses [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome Minkus]], and abandons the old theme song and credits sequence.
** Season 5: At the start of their senior year, Shawn reunites with his LongLostSibling Jack, who joins the main cast. Shawn, Jack and Eric (now attending college) move in together in an apartment, and Jack becomes Eric's best friend and comedy sidekick. Heretofore {{Kidanova}} Shawn gets a steady girlfriend Angela, who becomes a recurring character. Mr. Turner falls victim to ChuckCunninghamSyndrome and main high school set is changed to the senior hallway. The show gains an increased focus on running storylines, something it had already been experimenting with. Finally, the classic ThemeTune (with lyrics!) is introduced.[[note]]This retool even got a LampshadeHanging, with Chubbie's getting redesigned into a new restaurant at the start of the season.[[/note]]
** Season 6: Cory, Shawn, Topanga, and Angela graduate and go to [[CaliforniaUniversity Pennbrook University]]. [[RunningGag Mr. Feeny follows them]]. Angela becomes a member of the main cast. Cory and Topanga get engaged, but don't exactly make a mad dash for the altar. Rachel joins the cast and moves in with Eric (now a full-on {{Cloudcuckoolander}}) and Jack, setting up a LoveTriangle. Alan, Amy, and Morgan are reduced to CommutingOnABus.
* RiddleForTheAges: In "The War", how the hell did Cory and Shawn move Rachel's car into her dorm room? And where did Rachel, Jack and Angela get that {{bear|sAreBadNews}}?
* RightBehindMe: Used in the episode "An Affair to Forget" when Cory insults Shawn's girlfriend Jennifer.
** It also happens twice to Cory in "The Beard" when Cory tries to deal with Shawn's two girlfriends Linda and Stacy.
* RunningGag: Eric's "Feeny call". Also, Mr. Feeny following the gang to ''every'' school they go to.
* SayMyName: Again, the Feeny call.
* ScareChord: Parodied in the slasher movie-themed episode. Everytime one of the characters makes a dramatic and scary statement Eric goes "Duh! Duh! Duh!" in imitation of a scare chord. The other characters get annoyed after he does this several times and they get him to stop.
* ScreamingWoman: Also parodied in the slasher-themed episode. Angela takes on this role and after several big screams Jack says "You know, you are really good at that." and she thanks him. Later, when Jennifer Love Hewitt's character shows up she lets out a big scream of her own and Angela then tries to out-scream her because she "is the screamer around here".
* SecurityCling: In "And Then There Was Shawn", [[HomoeroticSubtext Eric jumps into Jack's arms]] after the lights go out.
* SeasonFluidity: As noted above, the [=retooling=] and increasing reliance on [[StoryArc arc-based]] storytelling resulted in fluctuating levels of this, to the point where it can almost be divided into three separate shows (season 1, seasons 2-4, and seasons 5-7), each with their own distinct continuity and characterizations.
* SelfParody: The ShowWithinAShow "Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe". It included ParodyNames of the characters and actors: Cory became Rory, Shawn became Shane and Eric became Derek. Ben Savage became "Ben Sandwich", and Rider (Strong) became "Schnieder". However, the most punny name came when they mentioned that Ben Sandwich has a brother named "Bread Sandwich", a reference to Ben Savage's brother Fred Savage.
* SequelSeries: One is currently being developed, which will feature Cory and Topanga's children.
* SeriesContinuityError: The show was really bad at trying to keep continuity straight. a whole page could probably be made of the inconsistencies Minor issues such as the norm of hair for the family.
** How long Cory and shawn had been friends is not consistent. Near the end of season 1 suggests they were friends for 10 years but early season 7 suggests 15 years.
** Cory and Topanga's relationship is a weird one. Season 1 shows Cory Antagonistic towards Topanga This begins to change by the end of the season in ''Boy Meets Girl'' However season 3 suggests they were life long lovers. Season 5 manages to somewhat correct this by having Cory explain that when he was 7 Eric convinced him girls were yucky so he flung dirt at her for 6 years, a period Cory refers to ''the lost years'' This is fairly plausible as Cory in early seasons is shown to be heavily influenced by anything Eric says. It's also worth pointing out in ''Boy meets Girl'' that Amy finds it weird that Cory and Topanga are going out on a date since Cory antagonizes her. she pauses for a minute and realizes that it actually does make sense and is not as weird as she first thought.
** Shawn's Girlfriend's: ''The First Girlfriends Club'' in season 5 doesn't seem to get Shawn's dating history correct I Love you Donna Karan'' states that Shawn never goes out with any girl longer than two weeks and never has until Angela. This would make it seem odd that he went out with Dana 6 months earlier however Dana had last been seen midway through season 3. The same episode also states that he also made plans with Jennifer and Libby, Jennifer hadn't been seen since mid season 4 and Libby was no more significant than any other girls Shawn had interacted with and hadn't been seen since early season 3.
* SexAsRiteOfPassage: On their prom night Cory and Shawn say it will be "the night we leave as boys and come back as men", and both try to persuade their respective girlfriends to have sex for the first time. Cory and Topanga almost go through with it, but decide not to in the end, and Shawn and Angela, well... the episode ends without resolving that T and it's not mentioned in the subsequent episodes.
* SexSells: In-universe example. In "How to Succeed In Business", Shawn gets a job as the assistant to an advertising executive and is asked to come up with ideas from a toothpaste campaign. Shawn thinks of a "sexy fresh breath" campaign but Cory recommends he choose a bacteria-based campaign because "sex does not sell". Shawn of course chooses the sexy breath one which the boss ends up liking.
* SheCleansUpNicely: Played with in one episode. Topanga suddenly becomes self-conscious about her looks, and decides to get a makeover. However, Cory and Shawn recognize that she was already beautiful before getting "cleaned up" and now with the makeover she will be "mega-beautiful", and sure enough she stuns them when she walks out of the beauty parlor. At the end of the episode she decides not to keep up the new appearance because it's not who she is.
* SheIsAllGrownUp: Cory has this reaction about Topanga.
* ShipperOnDeck: Shawn for Cory and Topanga, Cory and Topanga for Shawn and Angela, and ''everyone'' for Mr. Feeny and Dean Bolander.
* ShipTease: The Cory/Topanga pairing was [[RetCon retconned]] into being a lifelong true love during season 4; the two got together for the first time in the season 3 premiere. Before that, though, there were a few hints, including the kiss against the lockers from her debut appearance in early season 1, and the "You are you and I am I" speech from late season 2.
** Cory's relationship with Topanga in season one could be a symptom of the lifelong true love as he constantly picked on her possibly because he cared about her so much.
* ShouldntWeBeInSchoolRightNow: Although a lot of scenes take place in school and the characters' education is an important part of the show, they do seem to have a lot of time to have their own adventures when they should have a lot of school work to do. This is lampshaded in one episode:
-->'''Cory:''' You know we really should have taken more classes during our senior year. We have entirely way too much time on our hands.
* TheShowGoesHollywood: The episode "Eric Hollywood".
* ShowWithinAShow: "Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe," which Eric was asked to star on in an episode that had him learning to act. Naturally it featured [[{{Expy}} expies]] of all the cast members, evolving into an AffectionateParody of BoyMeetsWorld itself.
* ShoutOut: There are a ''ton'' of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania references throughout the show that fly over the heads of most people unless they're familiar with the area.
** For example, Pottstown from "You Can Go Home Again" is a real town in PA near Philly, however it is ''not'' three hours away (It's actually about forty miles, and therefore not in Amish Country, and also not home to "The world's largest cup of yogurt.")
** Speaking of the Amish, there are multiple references made to them throughout the show.
** The show also references Swarthmore College, which is in neighboring Delaware County.
** Pittsburgh and Philadelphia are indeed '''''really''''' far away, almost on opposite sides of the state.
** Hershey, PA has also been referenced.
** The show also correctly references the state capital as Harrisburg.
** Mr Feeny keeps a cabin in the Pocono mountains.
** Pennbrook College is an amalgam of several Philadelphia area colleges, particularly Penn and St. Joe's.
** John Adams High is a clear reference to ''[[SeventeenSeventySix 1776]]'', which features William Daniels in the lead role as John Adams.
** Hell, ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'', of all things, received numerous references in Season 5.
** In the episode "On the Air", after Eric comes up with a stupid plan he says "There's a little voice inside my head, you know what it's saying?", and his mom replies "[[ForrestGump Life is like a box of chocolates?]]", to which Eric just says "Huh?".
** In "The Honeymoon is Over", Cory and Topanga come across a little boy in their hallway who says "[[TheSixthSense I see dead people]]".
** Jack and Eric go for a run up the "Rocky Steps", otherwise known as the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
** In one episode, Cory gets shocked by a microwave and wakes up in the 50s, complete with disastrously naive nuclear bomb safety drills. At one point, he [[ItMakesSenseInContext ends up in jail]], only to be bailed out by his parents, who affect an extremely hip vibe. When they get close enough, they suddenly take on heavy old world accents and ask him if he has "the information," prompting Cory to ask why they sound like [[RockyAndBullwinkle Boris and Natasha]]. Funnily enough:
-->''How does he know our secret code names?''
** In "The Last Temptation of Cory", Cory says to a girl named Missy Robinson, "[[TheGraduate Missy Robinson, you're trying to seduce me]]."
** In "Pairing Off", Cory is surpised that two classmates named Michael and Lisa Marie have hooked up. This is a reference to the surprise marriage of MichaelJackson and Lisa Marie Presley, which occurred earlier that same year.
** In episode 10 of Season 1, Morgan is learning "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" on the piano, much like George Bailey's daughter in [[ItsAWonderfulLife It's a Wonderful Life]]. Given that the episode had a "spirit of Christmas" theme, this was probably intentional.
* ShrinkingViolet: Schneider, one the of actors on ''[[ShowWithinAShow Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe]]''.
* SkywardScream: Happens once when poor Cory suffers from a ''really bad hair day'' -- made worse by the fact that he still has to go to school that day and is denied permission to wear a hat inside the school building to cover up that horrendous hairdo.
* SleepLearning: In "Wrong Side of the Tracks", Eric learns to ice skate by listening to a dieting tape that his friend Jason had dubbed over. Naturally, not all of the original audio was removed, leading him to freak out over, and then run away from, unhealthy food at the end of the episode. In the middle of a date.
* SnapBack: A few of the wackier Eric plotlines in the final season had endings that led to this. For example, "The Honeymooners" ends by showing him being [[ImAHumanitarian boiled in a big soup pot]] by Hawaiian natives, yet he's back at home with no mention of this in the next episode.
* SomebodyDoesntLoveRaymond: The episode "Friendly Persuasion" features a more serious version of this plotline. Cory discovers that Angela keeps trying to avoid him and spends the entire episode trying to figure out why she doesn't like him. Eventually it is revealed that she is only avoiding him because she is hurt over her breakup with Shawn and being with Cory is a painful reminder. The revelation brings the two of them closer together.
* SoapOperaRapidAgingSyndrome:
** The second actress who played Morgan was clearly several years older than the first one.
** Josh, who was born halfway through the sixth season, and was a child of at least three in the finale.
** Cory Shawn and Topanga go from 11 -18 in five years.
*** See TimeSkip.
* SpoilerOpening: As there are no [[TheTeaser teasers]] on this show, the opening credits to the fifth and sixth season premieres spoil the fact that Jack and Rachel (respectively) will become members of the core cast before we are properly introduced to their characters. (Angela is also added to the opening credits in season six, but this is a clear-cut case of PromotedToOpeningTitles, as she played a major role during season five).
* SpotlightStealingSquad: During the "High School years" you wouldn't be completely wrong in assuming that Shawn was the main character instead of Cory. Shawn's unstable upbringing [[UpbringingMakesTheHero as opposed to Cory's]] made him easy fodder for a lot of the VerySpecialEpisode PSAs. Because of surprisingly strong CharacterDevelopment for both Shawn ''and'' Cory, [[TropesAreNotBad this didn't have a negative effect]].
* StandardizedSitcomHousing: The Matthews' home, although the living room and kitchen are separate rooms.
* StartMyOwn: In "Fraternity Row", Eric decides to start his own fraternity after getting fed up with the hazing of other fraternities. Unfortunately for him, [[DeanBitterman the dean]] catches on.
* StatuesqueStunner: Rachel
* SternTeacher: Mr. Feeny
* StockSitcomGrandFinale: In which the four core characters (Cory, Topanga, Shawn, and Eric) actually ''return to Mr. Feeny's old classroom in John Adams High'' (where none of them, including Feeny, have been for the past two years - and maybe more, if you take the TimeSkip into account) and say goodbye to their beloved teacher and mentor for the last time. Unusually, it is Mr. Feeny, and not Cory, who has the last words, and is the last person to leave the empty classroom:
--> '''Mr. Feeny:''' I love you all. Class dismissed.
* StoryArc: Probably the only show in TGIF history to attempt such ambitious and ([[MoodWhiplash mostly]]) dramatic story arcs.
* StrangeMindsThinkAlike: In "Train of Fools", Cory sends away the last available cab in the city because he thinks the driver was an imposter and says, "For all I know, he was gonna take us to some warehouse, and cut out our livers!". At the end of the episode, Mr. Feeny returns from vacation in that same cab and also becomes suspicious of the driver and doesn't want to stay in the cab and "risk his liver".
* StuffedIntoALocker: Harley and his goons like to do this.
* StupidSexyFlanders: Topanga has a moment of this in the episode "An Affair to Forget":
-->'''Topanga''': If it's any consolation, I think you can do a lot better than Jennifer Bassett.
-->'''Shawn''': You think so?
-->'''Cory''': Wait a minute, Topanga, have you looked at her?
-->'''Topanga''': Okay, so she's pretty, she's tall, she drives a red new convertible, heck, I'd go out with her.
* SubwaysSuck: In "Train of Fools", the characters get stuck in a subway on New Year's Eve.
* SuddenHumility: An early episode revolves around Cory getting a goofy haircut. The kids make fun of him for the day and the weird kids (Topanga, Mikus, etc.) befriend him. He explains that he now knows what it feels like to be an outcast at school.
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: Meese is one for Minkus though he only appers in a handfull of season 2 episodes before meeting the same fate as Minkus
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial: When Morgan runs into the room where Cory and Shawn are making illegal bets, Cory yelps that he's "not doing anything illegal!"
** When Shawn gets a Pig he and Claim claim not to be hiding farm animals in Shawn's locker.
* SurpriseIncest: In "Rave On", Eric hooks up with a girl at a [[ItMakesSenseInContext combined school rave/parents' anniversary party]] who turns out to be his cousin. While they didn't get anywhere, he's still thoroughly squicked at the situation.
* TakeThat: The episode "On the Air" took some shots at a few then-contemporary musicians:
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' ''(over the school intercom)'' And now, because the halls of our school beat with the lively heart of contemporary youth, here is the happening sounds of Mr. MichaelBolton!
-->'''Everyone:''' Aaaaaaaaahhhhh!
-->'''Cory:''' Make it stop! Make it stop!
-->'''Shawn:''' It's hard to cut the wires with a plastic spoon!
-->'''Cory:''' Just rip the whole speaker down!\\
Later:
-->'''Mr. Turner:''' If you guys are serious about this I'll talk to Feeny after lunch.
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' ''(over the school intercom)'' And now for you kiddos, Menudo!
-->'''Mr. Turner:''' I'll talk to him now.
* TeachersOutOfSchool: Mr. Feeny lived next door to the main characters, but that hasn't stopped him from being their teacher in every grade level they progressed throughout the seasons. Living next door only meant he could teach them life lessons they otherwise wouldn't have learned at school.
* TechnicalVirgin: Shawn implies that he is one when discussing DeathBySex in the horror movie episode.
--> '''Shawn:''' I'll get as sick as you can get without... actually... dying...
* TemptingFate: Happens frequently.
* TenLittleMurderVictims: "And Then There Was Shawn"
* TenMinuteRetirement: Mr. Feeny's retirement at the end of season 5.
* TerribleIntervieweesMontage: Used in "Band on the Run" when Cory and Shawn try to find people to join their fake band. However the trope was played with because one of the auditionees was actually talented but was rejected because he would make them look bad.
* ThatMakesMeFeelAngry: Done humorously. Harley Kiner, TheBully, was supposed to be tough and emotionless, so whenever some sort of event would happen, he would state his reactions to them by saying, [[DelusionsOfEloquence "I am hysterical" or "I am distraught."]]
* TheTeaser: Used ''once'' in the last six seasons (first-season episodes originally aired with them, but this was EditedForSyndication), in Season 5's "No Guts, No Cory" which was part of a TGIF crossover in which Salem from ''Series/SabrinaTheTeenageWitch'' swallowed a ball that allowed the holder to travel to a different time period, and proceeded to send each show to a different time period - The episode opens with Mr Feeny talking to his calls about World War II, before the opening starts after the show shifts to December 9, 1941 & Mr Feeny makes the announcement of Pearl Harbour's bombing.
* TheirFirstTime: The show milks this plot for at least two or three episodes. Cory and Topanga don't end up having sex until their wedding night, but there were several episodes about how they were considering sex and almost went all the way.
* ThematicThemeTune: The theme tune for seasons 5-7.
* ThinkUnsexyThoughts: In "The Last Temptation of Cory", Cory mutters the words "lunchroom lady" to get him to stop thinking about a pretty girl who is trying to seduce him away from Topanga.
* ThisMeansWar: Rachel actually says these words after she fails to get Cory and Shawn in trouble for a prank they pulled on her.
* ThreesomeSubtext: There's a few instances of this for Cory/Topanga/Shawn.
-->'''Shawn''': I think the three of us could be very happy together.
** And once for Cory/Angela/Shawn:
-->'''Cory''': Then why are you going to do something very strange in the bedroom when I have absolutely nothing to do with it?
* TimeSkip: One of the strangest examples on record. Cory, Shawn, and Topanga are all 11-year-old sixth graders in the first season, but five years later, the three of them are high school seniors, graduating two years ahead of schedule. Eric, on the other hand, ages normally: a 16-year-old high school sophomore in the first season, and a college freshman in the fifth season. (He took a year off after graduating.) But then, two years later, Eric, Jack, and Rachel are all graduating college, indicating that three years have passed.
** To put it more simply, season 1 states the characters would graduate high school in 2000 however they ended up graduating in 1998 with the show ending in 2000 after 2 years in college.
** In some ways though, this time skip made things make more sense. It allowed John Adams High to go from an unusual six-year high school to the more common four-year high school, and it made the characters roughly the same age as their actors. The first season year in sixth grade seemed to be retroactively turned into their final year of middle school. It's also possible (though [[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} highly unlikely]]) that Eric graduated in three years. Same for Jack and Rachel, who were both transfer students to Pennbrook anyway.
* TimeTravelersAreSpies: In "I Was a Teenage Spy", Cory is accused of being a Soviet spy because he knows that Sputnik is not a threat.
* TitleDrop: The series finale.
--> '''Cory''': Boy meets world.
--> ''''
--> '''Cory''': ''Now I'' get it!
* TokenBlack: There were two separate ones at different points in the show's run: Eli Williams in season 3 and Angela Moore in seasons 5-7. Angela lampshades this a few times: "Gosh I got to get some black friends."
* TooDumbToLive: Eric in the slasher movie episode, which is PlayedForLaughs. He agrees to stand out in the hallway by himself when he knows there is a killer running around the school. However, this is not what actually kills him.
* TookALevelInDumbass: Eric as he became wackier as the series went on. However, there is a tad bit of subversion in that his previous intelligence became more a {{Hidden Depth|s}} to him which assisted in unexpected ways.
* TookALevelInJerkass: Jack, who started out basically a NiceGuy who was a little naive due to being new in town and occasionally exasperated with Eric's {{Cloudcuckooland|er}}iness, then decayed into a JerkAss after his breakup with Rachel.
** Corey and Topanga's friends in the episode after they returned from their honeymoon. Angela and Rachel kicked Topanga out of the apartment without any heads up while Eric and Jack decided to switch to housing so the duo could not move back into the dormitory either.
* {{Troll}}: Morgan could delve into this at times, befitting the bratty younger sister archtype. It wasn't just her brothers that she did this to either, with one example being when Topanga is upset about her ugly wedding dress, Morgan proceeds to mockingly gush over how beautiful she looked, using the exact same (and sincere) words Topanga used when gushing over the ugly dresses she had picked out for the bridesmaids.
* TropesForDummies: In "The Witches of Pennbrook", Eric uses to book ''Witchcraft for Dumb-dumbs'' to help him defeat a group of supposed "witches".
* TroubledButCute: Shawn.
* TrueCompanions: Cory, Shawn & Topanga; and Eric to a lesser degree. The entire concept of TrueCompanions and [[SixthRanger Sixth Rangers]] is deconstructed in "The War" & "7 The Hard Way" when the latter additions to the cast (Jack, Angela & Rachel) comment that it's no surprise that the group split the way it did & it feels like they're outsiders in the group as they haven't known the others for their entire lives like the original cast.
** In a likely RealitySubtext to the events of those episodes, the ''actors'' who portrayed the core foursome (Ben Savage, Danielle Fishel, Rider Strong, and Will Friedle) ''also'' became TrueCompanions in RealLife, and remain so to this day.
* {{Tsundere}}: Topanga's 1950s dream sequence counterpart in "I Was a Teenage Spy".
* TwitchyEye: Topanga begins to develop a really nasty one during the preparations for her wedding to Cory, which, naturally, are full of wacky hijinks as [[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} Eric]]... "helps."
* TwoFirstNames: Shawn Hunter
* TwoGuysAndAGirl: Cory, Shawn, and Topanga are this or ThreeAmigos depending on the scenario.
** Ditto for Eric, Jack, and Rachel.
** Depending on the needs of the plot, they will often fill the role of ComicTrio or PowerTrio as well, though their roles within the trio shifted over time:
*** Cory: Initially a goody-goody TheKirk type, definitely stupid (easily bossed around by Shawn, Eric, and the bullies); later became an unhinged, irrational TheMcCoy, and certifiably the insane one
*** Shawn: A classic [[TroubledButCute troublemaking]] TheMcCoy, and the insane one; later episodes that featured Shawn in "[[TheWoobie angsty]]" mode (basically anything involving his parents or Angela) cast him as TheSpock and helpless
*** Topanga: In the first season, an even bigger [[TheMcCoy McCoy]][=/=]insane character than Shawn (Minkus filled TheSpock[=/=]helpless archetype that season); Later on, she took over Minkus' role before gradually mellowing into TheKirk; the series finale revolves around her having to make a difficult choice and she TakesAThirdOption.
* TwoLinesNoWaiting: Most episodes had a Cory/Shawn/Topanga plotline and an Eric plotline (Eric/Jack starting in season 5 and Eric/Jack/Rachel starting in season 6), though this varied a good bit. In many of the later season episodes [[MoodWhiplash one plotline was serious and one was comedic]].
* TwoTeacherSchool: The two main teachers shown at John Adams High were Mr. Feeny, who taught history, and Mr. Turner, who taught English. The third season semi-averted this with the addition of the semi-regular character Eli Williams, a new media arts teacher, and a few appearances by science teacher Dr. Sorrell, although the latter ended up quitting in his last appearance and the former [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappeared without mention]]. After Mr. Turner also [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappeared]] Feeny became their English teacher in season five. Later, after Mr. Feeny unretires and becomes a teacher at Pennbrook University, he and Dean Bollander were the only teachers shown there, with the exception of Fred Savage's character in one episode. The show lampshaded their use of this trope several times:
** From season five:
-->'''Cory:''' Hey Mr. Feeny, we found this purse, who runs the lost and found?
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' ''(irritated)'' I do Mr. Matthews. I teach English, history and film, ''and'' I run the lost and found.
-->'''Shawn:''' We'll put up a notice.
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' Would you?
** From season seven:
-->'''Cory:''' You got Feeny this year?
-->'''Shawn:''' Yeah, you?
-->'''Cory:''' Yeah, which courses?
-->'''Shawn:''' ''(nonchalantly)'' All of them.
-->'''Cory:''' ''(nonchalantly)'' Yeah, me too.
** From the finale:
-->'''Cory:''' You are going to learn something from life every day. And make mistakes. And you'll make good friends and Mr. Feeny will probably teach you every grade you're ever in.
* [[TwoTimerDate Two-Timer Date]]: Used and lampshaded in "Sixteen Candles and Four-Hundred-Pound Men".
* TwoWordsObviousTrope: Played with in one episode:
-->'''Shawn:''' Here's what I got for you - Two Words: Uncle Mike's
-->''<{{Beat}}>''
-->'''Shawn:''' I'm gonna need more words.
* UglyGuyHotWife: Averted by all three married couples in the main cast. Alan and Amy are an equal match looks-wise, as are Mr. Feeny and Dean Bollander. Though Cory is somewhat plain or average-looking compared to the more conventionally attractive Topanga, he could hardly be called ''ugly'', and likewise Topanga isn't exactly a supermodel either (part of her appeal with boys in TheNineties was her GirlNextDoor aesthetic).
* UncomfortableElevatorMoment: In "I Love You, Donna Karan", Eric makes Mr. Feeny his ImaginaryFriend to help him with his college work. At one point he gets in an elevator with a stranger and starts talking to the imaginary Feeny. The other guy is, understandibly, very creeped out.
* TheUnfairSex: A few times, but it was mostly limited to the more immature teenagers than the adults.
* TheUnfavorite: Eric later on, sometimes his parents are none too shy about it.
** Eric is generally portrayed as Alan's favorite throughout the series. However, since Alan also doesn't have much faith in him, he occasionally holds him back and dismisses his goals because he doesn't want to see Eric fail.
* UnluckyChildhoodFriend: Sorry, Minkus! See what happens when you go missing for three whole seasons?
* UnluckyEverydude: Cory.
* UnusuallyUninterestingSight: Neither Eric nor Mr. Feeny seem to notice that the actors on the show "Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe" look just like Cory, Shawn, Topanga and Jack.
* VacationEpisode: The episode "The Happiest Show On Earth". Topanga wins a trip to Disney World. Cory and Shawn stow away on a plane to see her there.
* ValentinesDayEpisode: "The First Girlfriends Club"
* VerySpecialEpisode:
** "Dangerous Secret", in which Shawn has a friend who is physically abused by her dad, so she hides out first at Shawn's house then at Cory's house before being sent to live with her aunt in another state. It ends with the Kids Help Phone Hotline number. It is also an example of a LongLostUncleAesop because this girl was never seen before this episode and is never mentioned again.
** "Cult Fiction", in which Shawn joins a cult due to feeling misunderstood by the people he knows.
** "If You Can't Be With the One You Love...", in which Cory turns to alcohol to deal with his breakup with Topanga and convinces Shawn to try it, and Shawn has a hard time stopping once he gets started.
** "Everybody Loves Stuart" addresses sexual harassment from a teacher. Notably this episode takes place while they are in college, not high school.
* VictoriousChildhoodFriend: Cory again.
* WackyGuy: Eric in the later seasons.
* WakingNonSequitur: In the season three episode "He Said, She Said", Cory says "No [[MonsterClown clown]]! No!" when Shawn wakes him up from a nap. This joke was later reused in the season six episode "Hogs and Kisses" when Topanga wakes up Shawn.
* WallGlower: In "Cutting the Cord", Shawn, who is going through an identity crisis at the time, stands outside the college coffeehouse looking on sadly as Cory, Topanga and the rest of their friends sit around laughing and talking.
* WallSlump: [[ShoutOut Kenny]] gets killed this way in "And Then There Was Shawn".
* WaxingLyrical: Mr. Feeny does this with a KCAndTheSunshineBand song in "The War":
-->'''Mr. Feeny:''' Mr. Matthews I have no idea what you're talking about, and that's the way, uh-huh uh-huh, I like it.
* WellDoneSonGuy: In one episode Cory and Shawn help Frankie win the respect of his father.
* WeNamedTheMonkeyJack: Shawn names his pet pig "Little Cory".
* WHAMEpisode: [[spoiler: The death of Chet Hunter]].
* WhamLine: "Cory, will you marry me?" from the episode "Graduation".
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Mr. Feeny and Dean Bolander married in the season 6 finale. She is never seen at all in the following season, at home or at work, though Feeny occasionally mentions her.
* WholesomeCrossdresser:
** In [=04.15=] ("Chick Like Me"), Cory plans on dressing as a girl to school in order to find out how life is different for female students and male students. He turns out to have too masculine of a walk, so Shawn tries teaching him how to act female, getting it "surprisingly on the nose" according to Topanga. When he shows Cory how to walk like a woman and does it perfectly, Cory and Topanga decide that Shawn should be the one to dress like a woman for the day. He turns out to be a ''babe''. He also has a preferred "female" name (Veronica) and admits to having "thought about" doing this ''a lot'' before Cory ever decided to write the article.
** In [=07.11=] ("What a Drag"), Eric decides that the only way for him and Jack to avoid Crazy Luthor Montaffo and his gang, after almost getting them arrested for an illegal rave, is to crossdress. They ''immediately'' turn to Shawn for help, and Shawn gives them a whole series of tips on how to crossdress correctly, so he clearly hasn't stopped since. Eric also decides to continue crossdressing after the episode ends, just for his own sake. Notably, both characters are not only heterosexuals, they are actually three of the show's most prolific flirters.
* WhoNamesTheirKidDude: Cory actually asks this question when a substitute teacher reads to the class from ''Beowulf'': "Who names their baby ''Hrothgar''?!"
* WhyWeAreBummedCommunismFell: PlayedForLaughs. One early episode has Cory studying for a geography bee, commenting that all the new little countries have made it a real pain.
-->In the old days, things used to be so simple. You had Russia, you had Moscow--one country, one capital. Now you've got your Latvia, your Estonia, your Ukraine, and each one's got its own capital. What were these people thinking?!
* WomenAreWiser: Played straight and subverted, while the women are indeed more grounded when it comes to day-to-day life, the guys are usually correct in matters of love and unity.
* WondrousLadiesRoom: In one episode Cory goes into the school's ladies room to talk to Topanga and he is surprised to learn they have a couch in there.
* WorstNewsJudgmentEver: PlayedForLaughs in the episode "The First Girlfriends Club". The news of Cory and Topanga's breakup takes up the whole front page of the school newspaper.
* WorthlessForeignDegree:
** One episode had a hopeful variation. Eric took a job as a security guard instead of trying to do his [=SATs=] again to get into college. His partner turned out to have been an engineer in wherever he came from, Eric asked him why he was reading the SAT prep book. The response: "So that I can let this country know I am an engineer."
** In another episode when Eric teaches a citizenship class he says he is the smartest one in the room, and a student says that in his country, he was a nuclear physicist, but Eric tells him that, in America, everyone starts with a clean slate.
* WoundedGazelleGambit: Jack's girlfriend Millie pulls one on Eric in "The Witches of Pennbrook".
* WritersSuck: The writers of the ShowWithinAShow "Kid Gets Acquainted With the Universe" are shown to be small children.
* WrongGenreSavvy: In "The Eskimo", Mr. Feeny gives Shawn the goal of acquiring two SuperBowl tickets and assigns Cory and Topanga to tag along with him; Topanga not to interfere and Cory to help them both. Shawn enters a contest with tickets on the line involving sitting on a billboard balcony on a freezing winter day... until it's only himself and the eskimo, eating ice cream and only there because he's on vacation for the summer. He gives up and the trio head back to Mr. Feeny to report, thinking they've learned the lesson: That sometimes, life will throw insurmountable obstacles at you, so you should learn to take things more seriously. Mr. Feeny is less than pleased. His ''real'' lesson was that sometimes life throws insurmountable obstacles at you, so you better man up and overcome them anyway! Now get your asses back out there and get those tickets! Shawn takes this as a self-realization moment when he remarks that everything difficult he's ever come across, he's folded. So he [[WalkingTheEarth heads out by himself]] to find the tickets and meet the goal. Cory and Topanga don't hear back from him in weeks... until they are watching the SuperBowl and [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming see Shawn in the front row on the 50-yard-line holding up a sign saying, "HEY FEENEY! NOTHING'S IMPOSSIBLE"]].
* WrongNameOutburst: [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] by Cory when he suspects that Shawn and Topanga might have feelings for each other:
-->'''Cory:''' Let me ask you this: In all the time that you were with Shawn, did he ever call out the name "Topanga"?
-->'''Angela:''' [[HomoeroticSubtext No, but he called out the name "Cory"]].
-->'''Cory:''' (flattered) In what context?
* YetAnotherChristmasCarol: The episode "A Very Topanga Christmas" features a dream sequence involving the Christmas Future part of the story. In it, Mr. Feeny as the Ghost of Christmas Future shows Cory what life will be like if he doesn't reconcile with Topanga.
* YokoOhNo: This is invoked twice within the show, both times done to add hints of humor to otherwise serious scenes. [[spoiler: Shawn indicates he feels this way toward Lauren when she shows up at Cory's house, calling her Yoko because he is troubled over the friction between Cory and Topanga. Ironically, Shawn later does the same thing to Topanga herself when she bitterly refers to him as Cory's "boyfriend" due to her feeling less close to Cory than she should be when compared to Shawn]].
* YouLookFamiliar: The show had many cases of this, some more noticeable than others. For example, the actor who played Angela's dad in season 7 also played a college professor in one episode of season 5.
* YoyoPlotPoint: Cory and Topanga have ''three'' major breakup arcs after they first officially get together at the start of season three, and two of those arcs happen ''after'' their relationship was {{retcon}}ned into being life-long true love.
* ZanyScheme: Cory and Shawn were fond of pulling these, though this diminished in the later seasons as the characters grew up and the show got more serious.
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