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Mr. Feeny and Cory Matthews in "Boy Meets World"

Image Credit: Mr. Feeny and Cory Matthews in "Boy Meets World"

'Boy Meets World' #TBT recap: The softer side of Mr. Feeny

Editors’ Note: As our excitement for the upcoming spinoff series Girl Meets World builds, John Hanlon will recap the original series that ran from 1993 to 2000, reminding us why we fell in love with Cory Matthews, Topanga Lawrence and Shawn Hunter in the first place.

Season 1 | Episode 5 | “Killer Bees” | Aired Oct 22, 1993

In episode 4 of Boy Meets World, Topanga Lawrence was introduced, and Cory’s slight affection for her made him show his softer side. In episode 5, it’s Mr. Feeny whose softer side is showcased. In fact, if this episode had a theme, it would be that young people can and should connect with the adults in their lives.

The episode opens with Feeny singing Minkus’ praises for receiving the highest score on a recent geography quiz. Cory mocks Minkus for always getting the top score. When Feeny gives Cory his graded quiz, he notes that Cory has a lot to learn where geography is concerned.

“There is no East Germany anymore,” Feeny says, pointing out a flaw in Cory’s exam before noting that the school textbooks the class are using are old and the maps are out of date.

Soon enough, Feeny notes that Minkus has been chosen to represent the school in the regional geography tournament. The winner of the tournament would serve as the batboy at the opening game of the World Series, a prize that Cory would love but that Minkus couldn’t care less about. After Cory brings Minkus home that evening (“Call my mother,” Minkus says as he is forced into the Matthews kitchen), Cory offers Minkus a deal so that Cory can take his spot in the competition.

“When you guys play Bombardment, could you not aim the ball at my head?” Minkus requests, and Cory accepts the deal.

That decision leads Cory to become closer to Mr. Feeny. Once Minkus drops out of the tournament, Cory jumps in — offering to learn whatever Feeny has to teach. He’s ready to do whatever it takes to win, he says, and Feeny begrudgingly accepts the offer. This leads to a role reversal: Cory becomes fascinated by geography, studying in and out of the classroom, while Minkus tries to become a “regular guy.” For Minkus, that means watching Beavis and Butthead, and wearing baggy yellow shorts and a backward cap.

Cory’s budding relationship with Feeny stands in sharp contrast with Eric’s tumultuous relationship with his parents in this episode. After learning that his parents have tickets to the same Aerosmith concert that he and his girlfriend Heather do, Eric is horrified. Why are his parents doing this to him? he asks. Eric can’t even enjoy the concert, he says afterwards, because his parents dressed like teenagers and danced in the aisles. After the concert, Alan sits down with the couple and tells Eric that when he was growing up, he wanted cooler parents, so Eric should be happy that he has youthful ones he has.

“Live with it,” Alan says.

In the end, Cory falters at the geography exam (“Are these guys working from a different globe?” he wonders). He’s asked, “Do whom do they [the Tuamotus] belong?” He doesn’t know the answer and begins talking about the Sandwich Islands, a subject that he’s more prepared for. He doesn’t win the geography bee. At school the next day, he realizes that Minkus — who has returned to his normal self — might have won it. Cory tells Feeny that he tried his hardest. Feeny accepts that, and then offers a Cory a look at the latest geography exam, which Cory aced. With only a moment’s hesitation, Feeny puts up the test up alongside the five geography awards that Minkus has racked up over the years.

“We won,” he says, and the professor gives Cory a high-five in celebration.

Life lesson: Giving your best and trying as hard as you can is more important than winning. And Mr. Feeny is the man.

Memorable Quote: “Your mother and I are at an awkward age. We’re parents but we’re not dead yet.” — Alan talking to Eric about attending the Aerosmith concert at their age

Note: Of all of the Boy Meets World episodes I’ve seen, this one is my absolute favorite. The scene with Mr. Feeny saying “We won” always brings a tear to my eye.

What did you think of the fifth episode of Boy Meets World? Is it just me, or does the “We won” scene get you choked up as well?

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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