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Fanfic / The Minkiad

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He is the only person that I truly loved without any thought or analysis beforehand. After he was born, I held him and he looked up at me with those big eyes and that innocent face I said, ‘I love you, more than anything, I love you.’ … He’s not nothing! He’s everything to me, everything!
Minkus on Farkle, From Unhappy In Its Own Way Chapter Four: Proving a Negative

The Minkiad AKA Unhappy In Its Own Way & The Lives of Genius are two fanfics written by Auburn Red that chronicles the lives of Stuart and Farkle Minkus, the father and son from Boy Meets World and Girl Meets World. They take place in an Alternate Universe setting where Jennifer Bassett’s personality hasn’t changed since she was in high school and because of certain dramatic events in the fic, the canon goes through some unforeseen changes as well.


Unhappy In Its Own Way- AKA UIOW was written first. It is an After-Action Report fic following the events of the Girl Meets World episode, “Girl Meets Flaws” in which Cory has a parent-teacher conference with Minkus about Farkle’s behavior in the episode. Through the conference, Minkus reveals to Cory secrets about his and Farkle’s home life particularly that his wife, Jennifer has been verbally abusive towards Farkle and himself. The conversation between Cory and Minkus leads to a chain of events and a bad situation that becomes worse. Can Cory, Riley, and their friends help put an end to this situation before it’s too late?

The Lives of Genius- AKA LOG was written second but chronologically it begins as a prequel to UIOW. It continues as a midquel referring to events in the previous fic, and the final chapters follow the events in UIOW. This fic takes us through Minkus and Farkle’s lives through the years including the Boy Meets World years seen through Minkus’ eyes the “Other Part of the School”, the beginnings and development of Minkus International, Minkus and Jennifer’s dating, engagement, and married life, Farkle’s birth, Jennifer’s abuse towards her husband and son, Farkle’s first meetings with Riley, Maya, and Lucas, and Minkus’ reunion with Cory, Topanga, and Shawn. We also get to look into canon characters from Boy Meets World such as Alvin Meese, Ingrid Iverson, Libby Harper, Dana Pruitt, Claire Ferguson, Mr. Mack’s Sherry, College Professor Stuart, Loni, Jason Marsden, Desiree, and meet some BMW characters who have yet to appear on GMW like Morgan Matthews and Rachel McGuire. It also is a mini-crossover with Mad Men in which it is revealed that Michael Ginsberg, the copywriter from Mad Men is Ginsburg from “Girl Meets 1961’s” nephew therfore he is Minkus’ second cousin and Farkle’s third cousin. We also later get guest appearances from Rusty Venture and his sons Hank and Dean from the animated series, The Venture Bros..


These fics are examples of Angst and Hurt/Comfort fics that include Drug Addiction, Alcoholism, Mental Illnesses, School Bullying, Child Abuse, Domestic Abuse (notably Female on Male), Attempted Rape, and Attempted Suicide. But through the darkness, there is a Happy Ending in which the characters particularly Minkus and Farkle emerge through better stronger people with a deep sense of love and respect for each other, their friends, and their romances.


Tropes found in this series include:

  • A Day in the Limelight: The first three chapters of Lives of Genius focus on Minkus’ time in elementary to high school when the canon has gone into the lives of Cory, Topanga, Shawn and their families; Of particular notice, the readers discover that the “Other Part of the School” is an area for troubled students with emotional problems. In fact most of the early chapters of Lives of Genius, the events from Boy Meets World are referred to but mostly not shown; Cory, Topanga, and Shawn are hardly shown-Cory only in the Graduation Day scenes, Topanga has one scene at the Science Fair and Shawn has two scenes-at Graduation Day and at a restaurant in which he encounters the engaged Stuart and Jennifer.
    • The gang are also seen briefly through a window after Riley is born and Minkus is contemplating his life after his grandfather’s death and his wife’s pregnancy. This is intentional so the readers can focus on what Stuart Minkus was going through during this time. It’s not until their children become friends that Cory and Topanga and eventually Shawn become regular characters as they have reappeared in Stuart Minkus’ life.
  • A Simple Plan: Farkle and his friends’ plan of getting him out of his mother’s house involves Farkle writing a message in code while collecting evidence of his mother’s and grandfather’s abuse for his father, Riley, Maya, and Lucas driving up to Rochester under false pretenses with his grandmother getting him off the compound, driving back by Lucas who has no driver’s license and receiving information from Zay and Smackle via smartphone. That’s not to mention the police blockade, detour into the woods and backroads of upstate New York, car trouble, and supernatural aid from the late but very helpful Malachi and Michael Ginsburg.
  • Abusive Parents:-Besides the aforementioned Jennifer, we also have Kermit Clutterbucket who sexually abused Maya and physically beat Katy for trying to stop him. Edward Bassett is also revealed to be at least verbally abusive towards his daughter, Jennifer, sons, Teddy and Tommy, and his grandchildren, Andrew, Laurie, and Ginny. If what Jennifer’s mother, Eunice, says is any indication about her children growing up to not feel or understand love, then Jennifer’s brothers, Teddy and Tommy are possibly just as abusive towards their children as Jennifer is to Farkle. Claire Ferguson recalls not only her abuse from her father, but also her former husband’s abuse towards her and her daughter. Morgan mentions that her former boyfriend was at least verbally abusive and would have been physical, if she wasn’t able to fight him back. The final abuse support group meeting is attended by Eric’s old friend, Jason Marsden who hints that his former wife, “Bag of Misery,” Desiree was abusive as well.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Edward Bassett calls Jennifer “Princess.” Ginsburg calls Minkus “Little Man” and his daughter by her original birth name, “Nonnie” even though she keeps insisting on him calling her by her changed name, “Nancy.” She later relents this after Farkle changes his middle name to Malachi Ginsburg.Minkus and Farkle refer to each other as “Urseus Major” and “Urseus Minor” after a stargazing trip.
  • After-Action Report: The first three chapters of Lives of Genius report on many of the events in the early BMW seasons such as the “Al and Fred question,” the school play of Hamlet, and the 7th grade elections among others.
    • Chapter Fourteen of LOG has an After-Action report of Farkle, Riley, and Maya’s first meeting with Lucas as well as the class elections when Farkle concedes to Lucas.
    • Chapter 16 of LOG reports the actions of chapters 3 and 4 of Unhappy In Its Own Way by taking place after Farkle wakes up in the hospital from his suicide attempt.
    • Some of LOG Chapter 18: Living Organism take place after certain conversations in “Girl Meets Yearbook” such as after Cory’s class, the conversation when Maya finally brings Riley back, and the final conversation between Farkle and Lucas.
    • Chapter One of Unhappy In Its Own Way takes place after the events of “Girl Meets Flaws” and deals with a parent-teacher conference between Cory and Stuart over the events.
  • All Abusers Are Male: Minkus cites this as a reason why he never went forward with abuse allegations towards Jennifer because he would be seen as the abuser rather than her.
    • One time Riley uses almost these exact words “except Joan Crawford” when Lucas suggests that it isn’t Farkle’s father doing the beating.;
    • Implied why Claire Ferguson takes such an antagonistic approach towards Stuart and believes Jennifer’s account that he is the abuser. Maybe part of the reason why Nancy believes that Stuart deserved the abuse that Jennifer gave him.
  • All Take and No Give: Farkle describes his father’s marriage as such: “You gave so much to Jennifer and she never gave anything back and you think that you have to be that way with me.”
  • Alpha Bitch: Jennifer not only with her old friends, Libby and Dana but also with various other people such as J.J. the rapist and his men, and the party-goers at her home
  • Alternate Universe Fic: Halfway through working on Lives of Genius, the status of both that and Unhappy In Its Own Way, were changed to Alternate Universe for two reasons: 1) Because of how Jennifer is portrayed in the series’ official canon is very different from the way she is portrayed in the fic and 2) Because Farkle’s suicide attempt preceded many of the episodes many of the canon events were altered accordingly to fit those events into the fics’ storylines. Among the changes are:
    • Jennifer Bassett is not as nice as she is in the canon instead she is more of an abusive manipulative bitch in keeping with her portrayal in Boy Meets World.
    • The motives for the creations of Farkle and Riley’s other identities had to do with the after effects of Farkle’s suicide attempt as well as the reasons that were stated in the episode.
    • Maya and Farkle begin dating partly because of their shared history as abused children. Zay and Smackle begin dating because they spend a great deal of time together helping the other kids rescue Farkle. Riley and Lucas get together somewhere between 8th and 9th grade. The events of Girl Meets Texas are referred to as simply a confusing time for everyone.
    • Nowhere in the canon does it state that Maya or Farkle ever were abused children, which the fic does repeatedly. Rachel is revealed to be Lucas’ mother. While the canon does not come right out and say that she isn’t, it doesn’t say that she is either.
    • Jennifer is in rehab during the time of Farkle’s genius party and because of Minkus’ business status (being removed as CEO and starting a new business), the party is more downscale than in the canon,
    • Minkus did not come from money something which the Bassetts use to ridicule him as “New Money”- Nothing was confirmed about his family background until Girl Meets Farkle when he says that the “Minkuses were always simple but incredibly wealthy people.” Since this fic pre-dates “Girl Meets Bay Window” the circumstances of the kids’ first meeting are completely different. While Farkle still may not have autism his depression and anxiety are called into question.
    • Minkus going broke is a lot earlier in the fic than in the canon and has to do with his removal as CEO and his separation from Jennifer as well as the desire to start a new company from the old one. Kermit Clutterbucket isn’t as remorseful as he is portrayed in the canon instead he is one of Morgan’s rapists and sexually abused his daughter in the past. The kids begin 9th grade without Farkle because he lives with his mother temporarily.
    • The company that Minkus is interested in investing in is revealed to be Venture Industries from the animated series, The Venture Bros. (Based on the author and her sisters’ assertions that Stuart Minkus and Rusty Venture were very similar in personality and delighted on the idea of them sparring with each other).
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Subverted in that it mentions that Ginsburg grew up in a Jewish home and his Brooklyn neighborhood is Jewish; While he is an agnostic, he considers himself open minded enough to speak about “Karma” and “the Universe.” His daughter downplays her religion to the point that she hires a pastor to perform her father’s funeral services. Minkus even says that she could have gotten a rabbi. Later Farkle’s Berserk Button is pushed when his cousin Andrew refers to Minkus in Anti-Semtic slurs. Jessie Goloff is revealed to be Jewish when Minkus wishes her a Happy Hannukah, “well a few days late anyway.”
  • Ascended Extra: Besides Minkus and Jennifer being featured characters in the fanfic we also get to peer into the recent lives of Libby Harper, Dana Pruitt, Alvin Meese, Ingrid Iverson, Loni the Matthews’ former store associate, College Professor Stuart, Mr. Mack’s Sherry, Claire Ferguson, and Jason Marsden and hear about T.K Keiner and Southern Belle Desiree. We also get to reunite with important characters from Boy Meets World that have yet to appear in Girl Meets World, such as Morgan Matthews and Rachel Mc Guire and hear about Joey Epstein.
    • Alvin Meese’s portrayal in the Minkiad began this way. The fact that at one time he worked at Minkus International and had been fired was only meant to be a throw-away gag line in UIOW to show another BMW grad stil in their universe. After awhile, the author began to explore the possibilities of Alvin Meese being the type of character that would have many of Stuart Minkus’ flaws (arrogance, conceit, know-it-all attitude) but none of his virtues (loving father, hidden kindness, friendships). So she expanded Meese’s role in LOG and developed his and Minkus’ antagonistic relationship accordingly.
  • The Atoner: Part of the reason that Cory is so involved in Minkus and Farkle’s struggles against Jennifer is because he wants to apologize for how he treated Minkus when they were kids:
    Cory: During that assignment about flaws, I realized something:people can change. Bullies like Harley Keiner and as well as their victims. So it’s my way of saying I’m sorry for the things that I did or said to you in school. I want to help you and Farkle, maybe help us both move on from who we were as kids.;
    • Ginsburg’s close bond with his grandson, Stuart, is partly to atone for not being around for his daughter, Stuart’s mother, which she tells him that he’s too late.;
    • After Ginsburg dies, Minkus visits his grave and apologizes for him and Jennifer living so far above their means that Minkus could no longer afford to keep him at the seniors residential area in which he was living. He tells Ginsburg:
    Minkus: I don’t know if you ever knew how much you meant to me but I miss you. You were the one person that I could talk to and feel like you knew me. You always helped me by encouraging me to fill my potential. You saw potential in everybody. You always made me feel safe, protected, and like I was loved. I’m lost without you and I don’t know what I’m doing here. I don’t have you to guide me anymore. I am so sorry that I messed up in the end. I promised you that I would take care of you and I couldn’t. The check bounced and they couldn’t keep you at your apartment. Mother had to send you back here. I failed you instead. You should be spread around the Village and Central Park and here you are shut up in a box in a place that you hated and it’s my fault.
    • Part of the reason that Minkus decides to create the Café Hey Digital Library is to atone for Ginsburg’s eviction and to honor him the way that he felt that she should be honored instead of with the small impersonal funeral that Nonnie gave him.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Minkus becomes a multi-millionaire CEO of a computer company but it is at the expense of marrying an abusive woman and being confined by his in-laws who manipulate him into making them partners.
  • Becoming the Mask: Many of the characters hide their true feelings or what they think is their true selves behind another layer. Minkus hides his unhappy home life and low self-esteem behind a mantle of “Big Business CEO.”
    • Farkle worries that his mother is the only one to see him for how he thinks he really is: stupid, ugly, etc. Maya reminds him that there is no mask that the mask IS the real him.
    • Maya and Katy cover up their abuse by not talking about it, until Katy brings it forward in court. Morgan hides her Attempted Rape from Stuart by pretending that she doesn’t care about him.; In his intervention letter, Stuart is uncertatin whether the Jennifer he fell in love with was a mask or the real Jennifer, but he believes that she is capable of being that person again.
  • Berserk Button: Go ahead cousin Andrew, call Farkle’s father Anti-Semitic names again, I dare you!
    • Jennifer’s berserk button is pushed repeatedly when Farkle drops something, breaks something, spills juice on something, oh heck whenever he breathes. It also goes off in front of her paramours such as when Minkus defends Farkle or when Alexander Withersby wants to leave her. Of course if I were Jennifer, I would never threaten Farkle in front of Stuart or insult Maya in front of Katy again.
    • Tom Minkus’ funeral is practically one berserk button after another between Stuart and his mother in which Nancy accuses her son of being unfeeling and deserving of Jennifer’s abuse and Minkus’ counters with examples from his marriage and walks off.
  • Betty and Veronica: Though not in appearance since they are both blondes, Jennifer’s spoiled rich snob and Morgan’s sweet “girl next door” definitely fit Veronica and Betty’s personalities respectively with put upon Minkus as Archie.
  • Big "NO!": Farkle gives one at 3 years old when his father uses reverse psychology on him when Farkle says that his stuffed T-Rex Rexy is for babies. Minkus says that he will give him to a baby who will want him. Well you know the rest. Farkle also does another one when Judge Boyer is about to announce that Farkle will be put in his mother’s sole custody.
  • Bottle Episode: There are a few moments in the two fics which take place in a small area, or with mostly one setting with a small amount of the characters. Chapter One of Unhappy In Its Own Way is primarily a Parent-Teacher conference between Minkus and Cory over the events from “Girl Meets Flaws.” Chapter Four of the same fic mostly takes place in Mt. Sinai as Minkus and his and Farkle’s friends are waiting for Farkle to wake up from his suicide-induced coma.
    • Chapter One of Lives of Genius is mostly set in the home of Ginsburg and features conversations between him and Minkus. A good portion of Chapter 10 of the same fic deals with a “Guy’s Night In” and a stargazing trip between Farkle and Minkus.
  • Break the Cutie: These fics are examples of breaking poor Farkle from his mother’s verbal abuse and taunts that drive him to suicide and later when he moves in with her and is disciplined by his grandfather, neglected by his mother, insulted by teachers and students at his new school, and molested by Jennifer’s friends.
  • Call-Back: There are various moments that refer to events in the canon such as the first chapter talking about the first season. It begins with Stuart upset about the “Al and Fred” question and ends with the conversation about SCUBA’s meaning.
    • Also Cory, Shawn, and Stuart’s conversation on Graduation Day is repeated word for word.
    • The GMW chapters include such references as Maya’s artistic talent, Katy’s acting career, Farkle’s and Lucas’ friendship stemming from Farkle conceding the election.
    • The events of "Girl Meets Yearbook" and "Girl Meets Farkle" in particular are altered slightly such as Minkus wanting to give Farkle a genius party complete with complementary penguins (which in the canon he did). Some of the conversations from the episode are repeated with different contexts, such as “Who does what I say/Everybody” exchange is repeated between Jennifer and Stuart like in the canon, though this time it is said with more trepidation and fear from Stuart instead of black comedy like in the canon. When Riley is upset in the hospital being comforted by Lucas, Maya tells her that he can’t promise her that Farkle will be okay. Lucas counters back with, Maya just this once can you not think hope is for suckers?
    • Shawn is positively jubilant when he finds out Cory made Minkus rewrite his intervention letter, saying that if Stuart was a student in Cory’s class it would have been an F leading to Stuart teasing him about his lack of intelligence, recalling their many arguments in elementary school. When Shawn gives Minkus his “bill” for participating in the intervention,he wants him to repeat exactly the words Shawn told him that Jennifer will “mess him up and break his heart.” Not only is this scene a call back to fic events but canon events as well since the bill insists that Minkus call Shawn a “genius” out loud something he would struggle to do because of their animosity. After the bill is read Shawn and Minkus engage in their name calling using terms from the series such as “Future Plumber/Suck Up,” etc.
    • Minkus and Cory’s dialogue “You got to be pretty cool/You got to be pretty smart” refers to their childhood animosity when Cory thought Minkus was a geek and Minkus thought Cory was an idiot. After the events of UIOW, they recognize the coolness and intelligence in each other symbolizing their friendship. It also is a call back to Ginsburg’s earlier words that sometime in the future Minkus would find that he has more in common with Cory and Shawn than he realizes.
    • Most of the trial chapter of LOG calls back to fic and canon events through the characters’ interrogations (Though some facts are skewered in the witness’ favor).
  • Cast Full of Crazy: All over the friggin’ fics! Stuart has a nervous breakdown in high school and one later as an adult; Both he and Farkle show signs of being Overachievers, Jennifer is diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and displays symptoms of it long before her diagnosis; Jennifer also is a Compulsive Shopper, Ginsburg has Alzheimers beginning at the young age of 57; Michael Ginsberg’s institutionalization in Mad Men is referred to many times as well as the after effects such as him having a lobotomy and never fully recovering from the experience; Dana Pruitt has Anorexia Nervosa;
    • Farkle attempts suicide and is diagnosed with Depression and Anxiety disorder and also is given to frequent Panic Attacks that are usually talked down by his father, friends, and one time his great-grandfather’s ghost; Farkle and Minkus both continue to have low self-esteem issues; part of the reason that Morgan rejects Minkus is because of PTSD from her attempted rape; While overdramatized, Riley’s transformation to Morotia M. Black could imply depression after Farkle’s suicide attempt; While Farkle seeks a therapist willingly and takes his medicine, Minkus refuses to see one upon Rachel’s suggestion. It is not until his mental breakdown as an adult that Minkus agrees to see one.
  • Catch Phrase: The characters’ catchphrases are referred to throughout the fanfics. For example when six year old Maya gives Riley a purple crayon at their first meeting she does her famous “Yayy!” Lucas tries to prompt Maya to tease him by saying that he’s been driving his mother’s truck then hints “You know truck, the type of vehicle a Ranger Rick or a Bucky McBoingBoing would drive, a guy that goes hurr?” using Maya’s nicknames for him. Maya at one time goes through Farkle’s window saying, “Gentlemen! I always wanted to say that” probably in the same tone as Farkle’s “Ladies.”
  • Character Death: Four characters shuffle off this mortal coil before the fics are done Ginsburg from a stroke, Michael Ginsberg from emphysema, Tom Minkus from heart failure, and Fluffy, the Minkus family cat from being put down after getting shot. However Ginsburg and Michael live on through the Digital Library and their supernatural assistance towards Farkle and the others in their escape attempt. Fluffy is honored with a beautiful urn on the Minki’s cofee table. Tom Minkus’ death becomes instrumental in the healing between his son,Stuart and his wife, Nancy.
  • Children Raise You: Jennifer uses Farkle as a servant when he lives with her, so he cleans up after her wild parties, cooks for her, and does housework under her critical abusive eye.
    • Farkle also briefly has to act like a parent taking care of his father during his mental breakdown including restricting his access to work, cooking for and cleaning up after him, and nursing him back to health. Minkus notices that Farkle has been missing school and hanging out with his friends to do so, so he reminds him that the best thing that he can do for him is to be 15.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Jennifer acts this way many times. After 9/11 she believes that their maid, Inez is having an affair with Minkus when Inez hugs him after he gives her a raise. She also believes that Katy and Maya were prostitutes. She is nearly right about Stuart having an affair when she encounters Sam Russo, however Sam and Minkus only kissed once. When she hears that Minkus and Morgan were spotted together, she hires a group of thugs to rape Morgan and cyberstalks her with threats if she doesn’t dump him. However, despite all this her libido heads towards other men herself, having multiple affairs. Clearly Jennifer has mastered the fine art of hypocrisy.
    • Jennifer’s jealousy does not just end with thinking her husband is having an affair. It is also taken up to eleven after Farkle is born and she feels that her own son is getting too much of Stuart’s attention.
    Narration: She had never seen Stuart act like that towards her. He had always been analytical before weighing and calculating the options before he admitted that yes, he did love his wife. Now here this baby comes out and Stuart Minkus professes his love instantly? She realized that soon she would have to compete for her husband’s attention and affections with someone who would barely be able to reach the table.
  • Coincidental Broadcast:[[spoiler:This happens three times in the Minkiad. In UIOW, Katy and Shawn hear about Stuart’s arrest and release, and Farkle’s suicide attempt so they run to Stuart’s aid. In LOG, Farkle hears about his father’s dismissal and is in despair and guilt over the event.
    • Also in LOG Morgan follows the Minkus custody trial on the Internet and reads about Katy’s testimony that she would go far for a friend. This gives her the inspiration to speak in Minkus’ defense. Technically Jennifer’s interview doesn’t quite count, since it mostly consists of her exaggerations and fabrications of the events to portray herself as the wronged abused wife, so it represents the plot as she wants people to see it, not as it really was.]]
  • Cool Uncle: Minkus’ VP, Eddie Giatti fills this in Farkle’s life even from a young age when he visits MI and Eddie calls him “junior” and defends him from Meese’s slaps. That bond continues when Farkle’s a teenager and he visits his father and his colleagues. Particularly when Farkle is in the hospital and Eddie says that “Farkle will pull through because he’s like his old man.” Farkle even thinks of Eddie as a surrogate uncle.
  • Cool Aunt: Minkus’ Office Manager, Jessie Goloff fills this in Farkle’s life even from a young age when she takes him on a tour of MI and tells Farkle about her favorite stuffed bear, Barry Bearington. That bond continues when Farkle’s a teenager and he visits them. He even thinks of Jessie as a surrogate aunt.; Jessie considers herself a surrogate older sister to Stuart who couldn’t help, but see the troubled relationship between Stuart and Jennifer.
  • Cool Old Guy: Grandpa Ginsburg! He helped raise Minkus when he was very young and the boy visited him every day after school. They traded word and number games like Farkle, Continuation, Logic Puzzles, Patterns etc. Ginsburg is still in his beatnik attitude from when he was younger often advising his grandson in terms like Minkus and his mother “are just on different paths in this vast Universe.” He is the only person that Minkus felt truly understood him and was a refuge from bullying classmates and his parent’s indifference. It’s no wonder that Minkus loved him and considered him the “wisest best man that (he) knew.”
  • Crossover: The fics, particularly Lives of Genius, are examples of a cross-over fic because they refer to and take place during both the Boy Meets World and Girl Meets World timelines
    • LOG is also a mini-crossover with Mad Men in that Michael Ginsberg is either referred to or appears a few times in the fic. He is revealed to be the long-lost nephew of Ginsburg, Farkle’s great-grandfather, from “Girl Meets 1961” and therefore Minkus’ second cousin and Farkle’s third cousin. Mad Men characters such as Peggy Olson and Stan Rizzo are referrred to as regular attendees of Café Hey and are still alive to Tweet praise about the Café Hey Digital Library, a tribute to not only Minkus’ Grandpa Ginsburg but also Stuart’s second cousin and Peggy and Stan’s late colleague, Michael.
    • Minkus’ pitch to form the new Minkus Technologies is a tribute to Don Draper’s many pitches particularly the one at the end of the third season of Mad Men to form SCDP. The Archive of Our Own summary even refers to it as Minkus channeling his inner Don Draper. The scene where Meese slaps Farkle is similar to a scene in Mad Men where a party guest does the same to someone else’s child (Though unlike the father in that scene who makes his son apologize, Eddie and Minkus are from a more enlightened 21st century time and give the exact opposite reaction.)
    • Later LOG also has a mini-crossover with the animated series, The Venture Bros.. in which it is revealed that the sophisticated technologies that Minkus is interested in is none other than Venture Industries and he is revealed to have a “frienemy” relationship with Rusty Venture.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Of course with Minkus and Meese at the helm it becomes dueling snarkers! Minkus snarks at his wife, because he can’t find any other defense from her such as telling her “Enjoy drinking your dinner.” Eddie gets a few zings in too like his description of Minkus’ situation as being “Duggars bad.” **Also Christine Monte does too with her sarcastic question to Minkus and Jennifer, “You two are a rock solid couple! What happened?” Minkus and Rusty Venture have a snarking relationship in which Rusty mocks Minkus’ marriage and Minkus mocks Rusty’s baldness among other issues.
  • Death Glare: Jennifer gives one to a caterer before she grabs a knife to threaten suicide;
    • She also gives one to Stuart when he is about to tell the hospital administrator about the abuse.
    • Topanga gives one to Cory when Riley mentioned that they learned about Civil Disobedience.
    • Riley attempts to give one to Jennifer at the intervention when the older woman flirts with Lucas, but the narration says that she looked more like a demented puppy, upset that someone took her chew toy.
  • Driven to Suicide: Jennifer tells her son that he is nothing, that no one wants him around and why doesn’t he kill himself, it would save everyone the trouble. Let’s just say Farkle does not take those words well.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: When Farkle teases Riley about punching him on the arm and telling him not to kill himself again, Lucas responds with, “It isn’t funny man!” He then tells Farkle that he never wants to see Riley as helpless as she was in the hospital and never wanted to feel like he lost his best friend and couldn’t do anything about it.
    • Some might think this now about Eddie’s line that “Minkus would have to be a member of ISIS to get more heat” in wake of the Paris attacks and the San Bernadino shooting.
  • Dude, She's Like, in a Coma!: Well, son in a coma anyway. Much of Chapter Four of UIOW deals with Minkus and his and Farkle’s friends waiting as Farkle is in the hospital lying in a coma from swallowing pills and cutting his wrists in a suicide attempt
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: And how! From their engagement on Jennifer becomes manipulative and abusive towards Stuart. Farkle and Minkus are verbally abused by Jennifer; Implied that Minkus is physically abused by her when he tries to protect Farkle and take the abuse meant for him; She also physically abuses Farkle at times during her marriage and greatly after Farkle moves in with her.Minkus recognizes himself in the signs of a person in an abusive relationship;
    • Point by point various scenes show the signs between Jennifer (the abuser) and Stuart and Farkle (the abusees), such as the abuser using psychological isolation from friends and family, gaslighting, bribing with gifts, half-hearted apologies, turning family members against each other, as well as victims walking on eggshells to avoid further rages, giving the abuser material goods to keep them happy, and apologizing even when they haven’t done anything wrong.
    • The abuse is always portrayed seriously and something meant to be stopped; Frequently many of the characters such as Katy herself, who was physically abused and daughter was sexually abused by her husband compare Stuart’s marriage to Jennifer with Katy’s marriage to Kermit saying that they are the same.
    • During his divorce and later breakdown, Minkus is made a fool of by several comedians particularly SNL mocking also his abuse, something they probably would not do for a woman.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: And do they ever! After surviving school bullying, two nervous breakdowns, unhappy marriage, alcoholism, domestic and child abuse, parental indifference, deaths of beloved family members, attempted suicide, mental illness, corporate takeovers, a fixed custody hearing, and sexual abuse, Stuart and Farkle Minkus are born survivors able to emerge from both fanfics as better stronger people with a wide circle of friends, family, romances, and relationships.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Jennifer is not exactly dancing with jubilation when she believes that her son has committed suicide. Later when Farkle issues an ultimatum that if he returns with them, he will be miserable and ultimately dead by either their hand or his own, Jennifer surrenders custody of him and consents to allow Stuart to keep him.
  • Evil Laugh: Morgan rubs her hands and does a parody of a villainous laugh when she says that Matthews’ Wilderness is now almost in her full complete power.
  • Fiction 500: We get inside the inner workings of Minkus Technologies/Minkus International including the stockholders, employees, business associates, clients, and personnel difficulties. Minkus and his associates climb higher in the business world from small beginnings to a multi-International conglomerate.
    • As they ascend higher, Alvin Meese becomes a greedy self-serving yuppie, Ingrid Iverson and Elliot Smackle become disenchanted and leave for the academic world, and Minkus remains with the company internally torn between ethics and profit. He later becomes overwhelmed by the role of “Big Money CEO” and feels smothered by others’ expectations. Such discussions include buying out of shares, insider trading, merging with other companies, small businesses vs. big business, the role of the CEO, corporate takeovers, locating stockholders and clients, a business’ public image when the employees have problems, ecommerce stores, and having and sticking to a company’s core values.
  • Foreshadowing: There are plenty of events that foreshadow the canon such as Ginsburg and Minkus’ conversation about Cory and Shawn in which Minkus is stunned that his grandfather would suggest that he would have something in common in the future with them and be their friend-foreshadowing that they would eventually be friends because of something that they do have in common, their children.
    • Dr. Hanlon’s observation that Minkus may someday find his home and love foreshadows his affection for his son, Farkle.
    • Jennifer’s throwing her ring at Minkus is shown for the first time when Farkle is five. Minkus think that it’s a way of saying, “I can toss you away just as easily as this ring and forget about the life that we built together and there is nothing you can do about it.”
    • Shawn’s disappearance from Cory’s life for 13 years is foretold when he thinks that he feels like a “third wheel” in their lives and his obvious ambivalence after Riley’s birth
    • Farkle’s claim that “Farkle Minkus will always be Farkle Minkus” and Minkus response that he should record this conversation as a reminder of course foretells the Donnie Barnes persona,
    • Farkle’s future goal, “Dictator of the World,” is prophecised when Minkus tells Jennifer with her appearance, his brain, and even a drop of their egos their child could be Future Dictator of the World.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble:
    • Stuart Minkus: Choleric
    • Alvin Meese: Melancholic
    • Elliot Smackle: Sanguine
    • Ingrid Iverson: Phlegmatic
  • Freudian Excuse: Subverted in that though Eunice mentions that her daughter, Jennifer had an abusive childhood under her father, it doesn’t excuse her behavior towards Farkle.She even admits that though Minkus too had an unhappy childhood, he was able to be a better parent.
    • Shawn also understands Claire’s motives because of her abuse from her father and ex-husband but still tells her that Minkus is not either of them and that he has been hurt too.
    • Even Stuart himself doesn’t excuse his own abuse from Jennifer as a reason why he didn’t leave her earlier.
  • Funny Background Event: While Farkle and Rusty Venture are engaged in a heart-to-heart in which Rusty compares notes between his and Minkus’ bad upbringings, Brock Samson is busy saving Hank and Dean’s life from the Monarchs. Rusty takes the situation totally in stride despite the confusion of Farkle and his friends and the MSTing from Riley, Lucas, and Maya, until the lab explodes.
  • Gaslighting: As it is one of the signs of an abusive relationship, Jennifer practices this. When Stuart reminds Jennifer of her DWI and he got rid of the alcohol she claims that she did it on her own and that they didn’t fight about it. It is implied that she practices this with Farkle when he recalls Other Stuart and Sherry molesting him and she says either he was dreaming or misinterpreted what they did.
  • Genre Savvy: There are three moments of this:
    • When Hathorne, Bassett’s aide uses the exact words that Meese says about a multimillionaire being interested and funding their research for the next five years, Minkus expresses surprise that he would say that when they were just talking about it. Hathorne says he knows, he was listening at the door.
    • The second is when Sam Russo enters Minkus’ office and he covers up staring at her in surprise for looking similar to Topanga by indicating he thought that Sam was a man. When Sam mentions this, Minkus says he was teasing her and that her resume clearly states Samantha Joanne Russo.
    • When a TV reporter mispronounces Farkle’s name as “Fark-Lee,” Shawn yells at the screen, “Farkle the kid’s name is Farkle” half expecting for the reporter to answer back.
  • Gilligan Cut: When Minkus says that he understands that being CEO requires a sense of detachment, ruthlessness, and utter professionalism, Jessie chooses that exact moment to give Minkus Farkle’s snacks and a toy stuffed animal.
    • When Farkle and Minkus go stargazing and are camping out, Farkle is terrified by the noise and Minkus suggests that they can sleep in a hotel. Farkle insists he’s not scared. Cut to Farkle and Minkus at the lobby of a hotel and booking a room for the night.
    • Morgan says that her and Minkus’ photo was featured in one New York newspaper and that it’s not like anyone in the U.S. knows about it. She says this right before she and Cory get a phone call from Daddy-O, Alan Matthews, in Philadelphia.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: Minkus pays lip service to being on a team to get Alvin, Ingrid, and Elliot to stay after the announcement that their company will be named after him;
    • After Farkle’s suicide attempt, he seriously asks for help from Cory et al to deal with Jennifer and then Eddie et al in forming Minkus Technologies. He states these two times as the only times he ever said, “I need your help” and meant it.
    • Farkle writes to his friends to help him get out of his mother’s house.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: When Jennifer is pregnant, Stuart suggests an abortion; Both Jennfier and Edward are horrified since it conflicts with their religious beliefs-Edward even calls them “Baby Butchers.”
    • Farkle later is shocked to learn his father suggested the abortion, but less by morals than he is by the thought that his father didn’t want him. Cory even tells Minkus when he edits his intervention letter
    Cory: "I know it’s a medical procedure. You know it’s a medical procedure and Farkle knows this. But he is coming off of attempting suicide because he believed that his mother didn’t want him. The last thing he needs to hear is his father didn’t want a baby either."
  • Heel–Face Turn: While not a complete conversion, after Farkle threatens to either kill himself or die by Edward’s punishment, Jennifer agrees to let him live with his father instead of fighting for him.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: Edward Bassett orchestrates a media backlash against Stuart Minkus when he’s dismissed as CEO from Minkus International and later before Stuart and Jennifer’s custody battle over Farkle. It includes domestic violence protesters, boycotts, clients withdrawing their support for Minkus’ new company, barrage of reporters, and of course the piece de resistance a PR stunt/One-on-one interview from Jennifer portraying Minkus as an abusive fortune hunter.
  • Heroic BSoD: Minkus has one after he runs away to live with his grandfather. Ginsburg doesn’t recognize him from the Alzheimers and Minkus is robbed of all the money he saved for a year. He sits down on a sidewalk curb and sobs.
    • Minkus has another one in the final chapters after his father’s funeral and his mother accuses him of not knowing how to love and that he deserved the abuse Jennifer gave him, Minkus returns to work upgrading the Minkus technologies resulting in his mental breakdown.
    • Farkle has a few as well. After his mother yells at him and says that she would be better off without him, he walks slowly to his room. He cries picturing his future as unwanted and unloved leading to a very unpleasant conclusion.
    • Also after his mother’s intervention, Jennifer slaps Farkle across the face, and tells Minkus that he “can keep the brat for now.” Farkle sinks down in despair and tears sobbing, “She doesn’t want me. She doesn’t love me. Why doesn’t she want me?” to be comforted by his father:
    Minkus: It’s alright son. Daddy’s here. Daddy’s here and he does want you.
  • Hidden Depths: Jennifer does show a tremendous amount of creative talent in decorating her home in various styles such as French Provincial, Hollywood Regency, etc. Plus she decorated Farkle’s nursery with Literary Characters. However, she does not have much of a drive to find employment or interest in using her talents beyond her home; Plus as also mentioned in the canon, she is an amazing gourmet cook.
    • Despite their fears towards their son and inability to provide Stuart with a stable homelife, Tom and Nancy Minkus had a very loving marriage shown very prominently in the final chapters after Tom’s death.
  • I Never Said It Was Poison: While on the witness stand, Minkus’ attorney Rosemary Welles questions a doctor about a report from an unnamed attendant on Jennifer’s behavior. The doctor kept insisting that he heard the report for the first time in court and then blurted out that the attendant had been fired shortly after filing the report. Not only did he know the attendant’s name which Rosemary did not give, but he knew what happened to the attendant. Wah Wah Wahhhh!
  • I Take Offense to That Last One!: One when Stuart says that a sale at Bloomingdale’s is more important to Jennifer than her son’s future, Jennifer counters by saying the sale is at Sak’s.
    • Also when Jennifer accuses Ginsburg of being “A Dime Store Diner Guru,” Minkus objects and says that his grandfather owned a caf&eacute.
    • When Minkus tells Ginsburg that he hasn’t kept the 10 Commandments, Ginsburg counters with “Hey, I never made a graven image!” (So he had other Gods, took the lord’s name in vain, did not honor the Sabbath, dishonored his mother and father, committed adultery, stole, bore false witness, coveted, and killed?)
  • Insult Backfire: Jennifer constantly ridicules her husband by saying he’s spineless. At her intervention when Stuart defends Farkle, Jennifer tells him that she located his spine and wonders where it’s been hiding. Stuart’s response: “It was used to prop you up!”
  • Intervention: The final chapter of UOIW deals with Jennifer’s intervention. Many real-life details are presented throughout the chapter such as choosing a neutral ground in which the addict is unfamiliar, to have a support system, to not making any threats in retaliation, and that interventions don’t always end with the addict agreeing to seek help.
  • Irony: Minkus tells Libby and Dana that they are good friends to be with Jennifer during her miscarriage. This is of course shortly after Jennifer blackmails her two friends with their guilty secrets: Libby’s lover and real estate scam and Dana’s anorexia and speed addiction in exchange for a conspiracy of silence saying that she had a miscarriage instead of a false pregnancy.
    • In a bit of situational irony, Jennifer spends some of "Unhappy In Its Own Way" trying to take pictures for an article to sell her family as the perfect loving happy family. Of course this is at the same time that her abuse towards her husband and son increase and her son is driven to suicide. Needless to say, the article does not get published.
  • Jail Bait: One reader was upset that Jennifer accused not only Katy, but MAYA as well of being prostitutes. Jennifer even hangs onto this fiction during the intervention when she implies that Maya is having an affair with her husband. Cue Katy’s Mama Bear moment.
    • It also leads to a very icky scene in which Jennifer in trying to escape flirts with Lucas! However, Lucas is not at all receptive.
    • Things become even ickier after Farkle moves in with her and two of the guests at her party, Stuart and Sherry, molest him and Jennifer turns a blind eye to it!
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Minkus sometimes acts like a jerk to his employees particularly after Jennifer fights with him and he takes his anger out on them. However, his love for Farkle is never in doubt and he does show affection for his colleagues when he praises them for a job well done and solicits their help in starting an independent business.
  • Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk:In contrast to Minkus’ kindness hidden behind his jerkiness, Alvin Meese appears not to have any “heart of gold.”He constantly wants to get the accolades for himself, steals from his company and practices insider trading. He also has no trouble stepping in as CEO and potential son-in-law to Edward Bassett when Stuart is removed from both.
  • Just Friends: Minkus insists that he and Morgan are just this, in fact that Morgan is “practically a little sister to (him)” despite Eddie’s suggestion otherwise. Minkus really is this to Ingrid, Katy, and Rachel. He also tells Topanga to “just be (his) friend,” when his crush evaporates and he accepts friendship from her, Cory, and Shawn. When Minkus explains his friendship with Katy (or thinks that he has to), Morgan tells him that she has plenty of male just friends that she works with or are regular customers at Matthews’.
  • Karma Houdini: Even though Edward and Jennifer Bassett have committed multiple felonies such as child abuse, conspiracy to committ rape, blackmail, etc, they receive very little punishment for their crimes. Edward only gets a fine and Jennifer gets probation with court appointed rehabilitation. Their wealth apparently bought off their minimal sentences.
    • However, Jennifer does surrender sole custody of Farkle to Minkus considering him “no longer worth it,” and realizes that Farkle is more Minkus’ son than hers. Also her and Edward’s relationship seems to have severed since they got into a huge fight and she moved to Europe.
    • Alvin Meese is one too in that though he served prison time for Insider Trading and Accounts Mismanagement, he is given a light sentence and becomes CEO of the company from which he was removed!
  • Line-of-Sight Name: When Zay calls the Bassett home in the kids’ plan to rescue Farkle, he calls the kids’ phony charity the LRMSZ Foundation (for Lucas, Riley, Maya, Smackle, and Zay) which the butler mistakes for the ALARMS Foundation. Zay then says it’s a charity to help “displaced children and refugees find their way home” and wants Eunice’s assistance to drop off some “important merchandise” for a rummage sale. He pretty much reveals their plot to the butler without him knowing.
  • Lonely at the Top: As the head of Minkus International, Minkus enjoys leading the team, creating the technologies such as the MIMS, the Farkle phones etc. However he also feels smothered by the expectations from his in-laws, that he has to please everyone, put on a brave face for the public, and care only for profit.
    • The worst aspects of the CEO’s role overwhelm Minkus for many years causing him to feel pressured and trapped by his role as well as suffering under the strain of an abusive marriage. When he is removed he creates another smaller company, Minkus Technologies, which puts him at a more hands-on role in producing quality technologies and becomes more involved in the creation of the products and with his employees.
  • Mama Bear: Katy gets protective over Maya when Jennifer believes that Stuart was sleeping with Maya;
    • Topanga also gets protective over Riley when Jennifer insults her as well.
    • Subverted in we never see Jennifer get protective over Farkle. In fact she deliberately puts him in danger or turns a blind eye to him.
  • Manly Tears: There are plenty of chances for Minkus to cry throughout the fics such as when his son is born and he cries Tears of Joy. Also when Farkle lays in the hospital from a suicide induced coma, Minkus considers turning off Farkle’s life support until Shawn asks him what he knows in his heart. Minkus sobs and says that he doesn’t want Farkle to die, that he deserves a chance to grow up, and that he’s everything to him.
    • Also after Farkle moves in with his mother, Minkus manages to hold his emotions in check until he drives down the highway and has to stop because his tears are making it difficult to drive.
  • Meanwhile Scene: The Lives of Genius Chapters 15-17 are meant to be read alongside Unhappy In Its Own Way because they offer different perspectives of similar events. Events that are alluded to in UIOW are shown in LOG and vice versa. Such as Minkus and Harley’s conversation in LOG takes place the next day after Farkle and Minkus attend the abuse support group meeting from UIOW.
    • LOG Chapter 16 begins when Farkle wakes up from his attempted suicide in UIOW and the events in UIOW are explained as well as Stuart’s arrest for domestic violence; Jennifer’s point of view is told in LOG right before and after her intervention in UIOW explaining why she agreed to seek rehab afterwards.
    • Also events detailing Minkus’ removal as CEO, starting his new company, and receiving the request from Jonathan Turner which are glossed over in UIOW are heavily detailed in LOG Chapters 16-17.
  • Mood Whiplash: Jennifer goes from deep depression and sobbing over believing that her son is dead to anger when her mother informs her that he’s alive and that Minkus cancelled her credit cards (A ruse to get her to attend her intervention). In other words she goes from sympathetic grief-stricken mother to a rage-filled spoiled narcissist in no time at all.
  • Mythology Gag: There are plenty of them! One in particular is Minkus’ line towards Meese, “What world could you ever replace me?” referring to the fact that Meese DID in fact replace Minkus as the show’s resident nerd for a time when Cory, Shawn, and Topanga entered high school.
    • Another is Morgan’s line that she was “practically a different person by the time she became a tween” referring to the fact that she was played by two different actresses, Lily Nicksay and Lindsey Ridgway.
    • And let’s not forget the question from Katy to her friends: “Did everyone in New York go to high school with you in Philadelphia because really I’m starting to feel left out?” Also mirrored in Rachel and Minkus’ conversation about the incongruity that everyone seems to know Cory, Topanga, and Shawn.
    • Another is when recalling Farkle’s Genius Party, Minkus refers to the fact that Jennifer was in rehab so he had to fill both roles as mother and father in Farkle’s life and that he had to downscale the Genius Party because he did not have as much money. The narration says “too bad because he was looking forward to ordering the complimentary penguins” referring to not only was Jennifer present at the Genius Party in the canon but so were the complimentary penguins!
    • Also Farkle’s original working name, “Shamus Farkle,” (before the writers changed his name to Farkle Minkus and made him Minkus’ son) is referred to in UIOW when Jennifer thinks “I wanted to name him Shamus, but he had to go and name him while I was laid up with post-partum depression” and later in LOG when Farkle moves in with his mother and she changes his name to Shamus Bassett.
  • Nerd: Oh the whole darn clan! The difference between how a nerd was portrayed in the 90s as nothing more than a comic relief character to how they are portrayed now with more sympathy and possibly with mental illnesses is illustrated by Minkus’ line:
    ’’’Minkus’’’: It’s funny when we were in school, behavior characteristics like that simply meant you were a nerd. Get all ‘A’s and you were a teacher’s pet. Dress differently and wear pocket protectors and you were just a weirdo. Now there’s a name for it, a condition as if medicine and therapy could treat it. As if the stigma of being weird in school wasn’t bad enough.
    • Also part of Minkus’ reluctance to accept help comes from his mistrust towards Cory and Shawn over how they treated him when he was in school.
  • No Indoor Voice: A few time characters use all caps when they express anger: Jennifer says “OUR LAST MEAL TOGETHER!” and “NOTHING AM I” in the same chapter!
    • Minkus warns Jennifer if being his wife and Farkle’s mother ever meant anything to her she will listen to them and “SIT. DOWN!” During Minkus’ mental breakdown he yells about Farkle “WHERE IS HE?” so loud that Cory jumps.
  • One Steve Limit: Let’s see we have two Stuarts-Minkus and evil Stuart from “Everybody Loves Stuart,” though separated by Farkle’s nickname for Evil Stuart, O.S.; two Christines- a Stratford student and Minkus’ employee; three Edwards-Edward Bassett, Teddy Bassett Jr., and Eddie Giatti; two Andrews-a student at the Science Fair and Farkle’s cousin; Two Eugenia/Ginnys- Farkle’s aunt and cousin; three Davids-Jennifer’s attorney at the custody trial, a Nursing home attendant, and a businessman; four Thomas/Tommys—Tom Minkus, Minkus’ father,Tommy Bassett, Jennifer’s brother, Thomas Hathorne, Bassett’s aide, and of course Thomas “T.J.” Murphy.; Technically three Morty’s-Minkus’ uncle and great-uncle and though he isn’t called by name, Michael Ginsberg’s father; two Loni/Lonnys-the male one who works for Minkus and the female one who used to work for the Matthewses, two Joshua/Joshes-Libby’s real estater patner/lover involved with her real estate scam, and Cory, Morgan, and Eric’s younger brother.
  • Overprotective Dad: After Farkle’s suicide attempt, Minkus becomes over protective of Farkle. He removes access to any potential weapons of suicide even wanting to make long term plans such as not teaching him to drive and having him home schooled for the rest of his life. When Farkle returns to school, Minkus constantly texts him, places his Baby Cam inside his bedroom to monitor his activities, and counts his medicinal intake. While Farkle understands the protectiveness, he becomes irritated with it and also felt that his father did not do enough to prevent Farkle’s abuse and attempted suicide in the first place. These are among the motivations for Farkle’s transformation into Donnie Barnes.
  • Papa Wolf: Stuart Minkus gets protective over Farkle many times throughout the fics. One of the reasons that he stays with Jennifer is so he could protect and take the abuse meant for Farkle.
    • During the intervention, when Jennifer attacks Farkle, Minkus stands in front:
    Minkus: "Now you are my wife and Farkle’s mother, if either of those things ever meant anything to you, you will listen to what we have to say and you will: SIT. DOWN!"
    • A phone call from Farkle only saying three words, “Dad,” and “ please help” is enough to send Minkus taking the red-eye to Rochester and to enter the Bassett home to look for his son.
    • Minkus also protects Farkle from other people such as Meese. When Meese slaps him, Minkus cites this as a reason why his dismissal is so much easier for him.
    • Cory also gets very Papa Wolf towards his children and his students at times. When Jennifer reveals that she knew that he called DFS on her
    Cory: Yeah well I have this funny quirk that I don’t like when one of my students gets hurt, especially by their parents, the people who-oh, I don’t know-are supposed to love and take care of them. The funny thing is the state of New York doesn’t really like it either. So I have this obsessive urge to step in.
  • Parental Favoritism: Teddy and Tommy Bassett believe that their father considers Jennifer his favorite child. We later learn from their mother, Eunice that their father, Edward, deliberately played his children off of each other in an attempt to make them strong, so he had no favorite.
  • Parents as People: The Ginsburg-Minkuses have three generations of parental difficulties. Ginsburg was a free spirit who felt tied down by his wife and daughter so he left themto open the Café Hey and be around artists, thinkers, and musicians.
    • His daughter Nonnie, AKA Nancy was so bitter and preoccupied with a fear of being hurt or abandoned that she “avoided being hurt” by dismissing her son’s achievements and believing that he was strange or dangerous and got her husband to go along with her fears.
    • Her son, Stuart while a loving father, is packed with insecurities and self-esteem issues stemming from his parent’s anxieties and abuse from his wife, that cause difficulties between him and Farkle even long after he and Jennifer get divorced.
    • It doesn’t look good for our little funny-named friend to be a stable well-adjusted father in the future (and considering that he’s with Maya who has her own issues it seems less likely.
  • Plucky Comic Relief:There are several characters who fit this description: Elliot Smackle with the original team and Lonny Overton and Ali Gold
    • with the second Minkus Technologies Sometimes Eddie Giatti’s one-liners and picking up women is meant for laughs, and Zay Babineaux with the Sinister Six.
  • Power of Friendship: Minkus’ friends appear at Farkle’s bedside and he asks for their help to get Jennifer out of his and Farkle’s lives; Minkus also finds friendship in his employees at Minkus Technologies when they agree to form the new company and stay with it despite the controversy; Farkle’s friends help get him out of Rochester and back to his father’s home.
  • Read the Fine Print: Stuart gives partnership of Minkus Technologies to his in-laws without realizing that they have the ability to remove him as CEO later and they do.You think he would have been smart enough to read the whole document before he signed it first.
  • "Reason You Suck" Speech: Minkus not only gives one about Jennifer to her father, Edward but he tells Edward off as well after they fired him as CEO:
    "Why don’t I tell you some things about your ‘Princess?’ Did you know that she continuously abused Farkle verbally and at times physically? That she abused me as well? Did you know both Farkle and I had attended abuse support group meetings to deal with the problems at home? That Jennifer had been arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct or how about that she attacked me and threatened suicide in full view of several employees? That her psychiatrist has listed her condition as borderline personality disorder?...That Farkle has been in the hospital because your precious princess has him convinced that he is nothing? Do you want to know why he’s in the hospital? Do you know any of that or do you just choose not to know?..See Edward I think that you have that crowd out there stirred up because you want me to be painted as the villain instead of Jennifer. She would never win otherwise!"
    • Farkle also lays one out to his mother and grandfather when he returns to his father and friends:
    "What about the laws that Jennifer violated?...What about the beatings? The punishments, the ‘toughening up?’ How long do you think I was going to last out there in the heat, Edward? What about the parties? You know what Sherry and Other Stuart did to me, You just won’t admit it! What Sherry learned from her Sainted Leader, what was his name Mr. Big Mack and what Stuart taught by screwing around college girls? You know that Sherry and Other Stuart fondled me during the night and you let them drug me so I wouldn’t say anything! How about the times that you slipped me sleeping pills so I wouldn’t know whether Dad visited me? Are you really going to pretend that you don’t know anything about it?"
  • Rich Bitch: Guess, oh just guess.
  • Right Behind Me: Just like in the series, Cory falls victim to this. He says he is sick of hearing about celebrity separation gossip and Minkus is standing behind him. He covers up by saying that he’s referring to Kris and Caitlyn Jenner;
    • Meese falls victim to this when he insults Farkle and Minkus saying Farkle is a brat and Minkus has gone soft. He ignores Jessie’s “he’s not that bad” and meaningful looks until oops!
    • Lonny and Ali fall for this when they announce that Minkus and Morgan’s date was in the paper, which Eddie and Jessie were trying to hide. They do this after greeting Minkus who was in the same room.
  • Running Gag: There are a few among them Katy, Stuart, and Rachel’s observation that everyone seems to know Cory, Shawn, and Topanga;
    • Jennifer’s inability to remember her servant’s names often calling them the previous ones’ name and the revolving door of servants in the Minkus household.
    • Jennifer’s interior designs change throughout each chapter from French Provincial, to Art Deco, to Asian style, to Hollywood Regency, to Minimalist Gregorian.
    • At least two characters mispronounce Farkle’s name as “Fark-Lee,” one of the DFS investigators and a news reporter on TV. Rusty Venture constantly calls Farkle “Finkle.”
  • Shipper on Deck: Eddie acts this way towards Minkus and Morgan when he sees that they are interested in each other. Once Cory gets over his concern of the two getting their picture in the paper, he gives them their blessing but suggests that they wait “until after (Minkus’ divorce) is over.”
  • Smooch of Victory: Well Hug of Victory anyway. When Zay and Smackle receive word that their friends have returned to Manhattan, they engage in a friendly hug that is about to lead to more when Smackle’s mother walks in. Later the fic reveals that Zay and Smackle have begun dating.
  • Smug Snake: Alvin Meese especially When he and Edward Bassett reveal that Meese will be replacing Minkus as CEO and that the company will be called Meese International instead:
    Meese: Saves a bundle on the monograms doesn’t it?
  • Status Quo Is God: Cory asks Minkus if he prefers to be called “Stuart,” Minkus says that he is used to being called “Minkus” from Cory and Shawn and that they may continue to do so. Topanga, Katy, Rachel, and Morgan call him “Stuart” however.
  • Stepford Smiler: Jennifer is one of the Type C variety particularly in UIOW when she takes pictures for an article to try to sell her family as the perfect happy loving family when they are anything but.
    • Stuart is one of the Type A variety in that he has to act like he’s happy even though he is miserable and anguished over his son’s abuse.
    Narration: No matter what it took, he would act happy even when he wasn’t. He would hide any disappointments behind a smirk, a smug grin of satisfaction, and a delight in the gains behind his life. If the smile ever dropped, he would will it back to his face. He would no longer worry about regrets and things that might have been. He would only move forward. If he tried really hard to act happy, he would get really good at it. Maybe he finally might be.
  • Surprise Witness: The Minkus custody trial has two: Morgan who outs herself as the “Unidentified Blond” date of Minkus’ and Farkle who speaks out in favor of his father; Subverted in that despite their testimony, the verdict is still in Jennifer’s favor. Morgan even says that her testimony probably gave Jennifer’s attorney more ammo to accuse Minkus of being an abusive philanderer.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: The fact that Eddie Giatti says that he and Jessie Goloff are not hiding the paper with details about Minkus and Morgan’s date does not fall in this category at all!
  • Take That!: When Sam Russo presents her game, The Goddess Wars, Minkus says that one of the refreshing things about it is that neither of the lead female characters are princesses, you know kind of like a certain company’s lead female characters?
  • There Are No Therapists: Subverted in that several of the characters seek psychiatric help such as Farkle and Minkus in his youth. However when Rachel suggests that Minkus seek a therapist, he doesn’t want to. It isn’t until he has another breakdown upon adulthood that Minkus agrees to see one.
    • Jennifer, and her friends, Dana Pruitt-Livingstone and J.J. Stone have also been in therapy and rehab but they appeared not to have taken. Jennfier tells J.J. that the only thing he learned was that he was an addict.
  • Those Two Guys: Minkus’ software technicians, Black and Nerdy Lonny Overton and Granola Girl Ali Gold fit the bill. Sometimes Minkus’ Accounts VP, Eddie Giatti and Office Manager, Jessie Goloff do as well.
  • Token Minority: Minkus is very matter-of-fact about Jessie, his office manager, being a lesbian and he also keeps Christine Monte, a hardware designer who happens to be a transgender,on his team.
    • Notable that he recognizes their abilities and contributions to the company without making much of a mention of their sexuality. Christine praises him for his giving her a chance and cites that as a reason she decides to jump ship with him to create Minkus Technologies. Minkus also makes Jessie a partner in the new Minkus Technologies and acknowledges her creation of the Feenix device.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl:
    • Morgan and Jennifer respectively though at times it is subverted when Morgan says she likes to “be dressy and feminine, likes rom coms and chick lit, old love songs, and flowers” and Jennifer could be as physically strong as any man as the series show and has no problem physically hurting Stuart many times.
    • In the concept for the game The Goddess Wars, Sam Russo describes the two protagonists, Fienna and Marilena as this.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass:
    • Jennifer is not the nice loving mother that we saw in “Girl Meets Farkle” instead she is an abusive manipulative bitch more like her high school persona;
    • One of Morgan’s rapists is revealed to be Kermit Clutterbucket, Katy’s ex-husband and Maya’s father.
    • Alvin Meese, a sniveling high school nerd becomes a greedy self-serving Yuppie who practices Insider Trading and has no problem stepping in as CEO of Minkus International when Minkus is removed.
    • Libby Harper a vague dizzy girl in high school becomes a self-involved real estate criminal who has no problems in committing perjury in exchange for a lighter prison sentence at the Minkus custody trial.
    • While College Professor Stuart is a jerk in the canon, at least his conquests were legal adults until now; Sherry Mr. Mack’s recruiter is implied to be not only Mack’s former mistress but is revealed to be Professor Stuart’s current girlfriend and co-hort in seducing underage conquests.
    • Some may think Claire’s single-minded pursuit against Minkus believing him to be an abuser could be described as fanatic, though she is sympathetic because of her past history with her father.
  • Volleying Insults:
    • Minkus often does this with Jennifer’s brothers, Teddy and Tommy Bassett. When Minkus proposes to Jennifer, the twins deride Minkus as being “NOK: Not Our Kind” to which Minkus smarts back, “I’m not asking to marry either of you…I know it’s hard for you two to comprehend, but I am talking to your sister!”
    • Shawn and Minkus continue their sniping relationship despite becoming friends when they recall their old insults towards each other such as “Suck Up!” “Future Plumber!” “Teacher’s Pet!” “Fix a sink!” “Geek Master!” “Recidivist!”;
    • Minkus also volleyes insults with Rusty Venture from the Venture Bros. such as when Rusty calls Minkus, “Lonesome Loser” and Minkus calls Rusty, “Captain Hair.”
  • What Might Have Been:
    • Minkus wonders about this after Grandpa Ginsburg’s funeral when he sees Cory and Topanga with Baby Riley through the window of the Matthews’ home. Mr. Feeny says that we all contemplate different paths “provided that we know which roads were ours to take.”
    • The author considered making the final couple Stuart Minkus/Rosemary Welles (his divorce attorney), but an error on the Other Wiki said that Morgan would be in the next Minkus episode “Girl Meets Money” when she wasn’t but Auburn Red explored the possibility of the two being a couple. So voila Stuart Minkus and Morgan Matthews began their tepid romance.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Rosemary calls Minkus out for approaching Jennifer’s house and “acting like a lunatic” calling for Farkle when he believes that he is in trouble. Minkus realizes that since he acted on emotion, he had to think intellectually hence his plan to gather evidence on the abuse.
  • You Are Not My Father:
    • Nancy tells Ginsburg that her stepfather, Phillip, was more her father than he ever was.
    • When Meese is about ready to punish Farkle, he uses these exact words to him. Then says that Stuart Minkus is his father.


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