Cornelius A. "Cory" Matthews (Ben Savage) is the main character of the series Boy Meets World and plays a large role as the main adult character in the spin-off series, Girl Meets World. His best friend is Shawn Hunter, and his mother and father are Amy and Alan Matthews. By the end of the series, he has three siblings: Eric, Morgan, and Joshua. Cory is friends with Topanga Lawrence, his "first true love," whom he eventually marries late in the series. Sometimes, Cory does not get along with Topanga, when Cory is not doing the right thing, or not doing things the right way (humorously), complete with deadpan humor and puns. Mr. George Feeny is Cory's teacher/principal, mentor, and neighbor. He goes to him for advice on his problems. Cory always works his problems out. In the last episode, it is revealed that Cory is actually short for 'Cornelius.' He is not fond of this fact.
By the end of the series, Cory, Topanga, and their friends eventually left Philadelphia for an internship that Topanga got with a law firm in New York City, and by the time of the events of Girl Meets World, Cory has had two children with Topanga, a daughter named Riley, plus a son named Auggie. Cory became a history teacher and his daughter is in his class. In the spin-off, Cory, who is now matured and experienced, plays the similar role as his father Alan and George Feeny had; mentoring his children and their friends about life, while still learning his craft as a young teacher (akin to Jonathan Turner).
Cory Matthews is introduced as a sarcastic, baseball-loving slacker who has butted heads many times with his strict, but wise teacher, Mr. Feeny (William Daniels). The first season is characterized by many episodes where Cory seems to make a mistake or doing something dismissive, but then ends up learning a lesson either on his own or explicitly through his parents or Mr. Feeny. Often enough, what he is learning in Mr. Feeny's class applies to his home life and vice versa. Cory gradually understands his parents more and respects them for all that they do for him. His relationship with his older brother Eric (Will Friedle) becomes confusing as Eric's constant obsession with girls is foreign to a young Cory and he also begins to become more protective of his little sister, Morgan as she grows up.
Though he hangs out with a group of friends, seemingly on rotation in the first season, the one constant is Shawn Hunter (Rider Strong), who later takes on the role of his sole best friend throughout the series. Shawn is his partner in crime and often the cause of the mischief, joining in on the wisecracks in the back row of Mr. Feeny's classroom. Two other recurring characters in the first season are Stuart Minkus (Lee Norris) and Topanga Lawrence (Danielle Fishel). Both Minkus and Topanga are smart, nerdy, strange outcasts, whom Cory and Shawn constantly poke fun at both directly and indirectly. While his relationship with nerdy Minkus remains the same, Cory gradually moves past his aversion to girls phase and develops some sort of affection for Topanga by the end of the season.
During the second season, Cory and Shawn begin junior high school at John Adams High School and meet Mr. Turner (Anthony Tyler Quinn), an unconventional English teacher that helps Cory out and provides advice as he grows into adolescence. Cory is fixated with being popular at his new high school and manages to get into several predicaments including dating his bully's sister, joining the wrestling team, and starting a band despite not knowing how to play the guitar or sing. Throughout it all, Shawn is there to help, or in some cases, make things worse.
Cory tries at some points to begin a more romantic relationship with Topanga, but is still immature and naive about romance, though he does not want to be thought uncool for not dating. Sensing this, Topanga is wary of his advances, and despite the mutual attraction, the two do not date in the second season. The two experience flirtation, subtle jealousy, casually dating other people, and a brief misunderstanding in which the school thinks that Cory slept with Topanga. Throughout it all, the two remain friends. Shawn's family and background are explored in a little more (humorous) detail and even causes some tension with Cory when Shawn is pulled in toward the rougher crowd of Harley Keiner (Danny McNulty). Cory is there for Shawn, even when his parents leave him. Shawn briefly lives with Cory and his parents, but soon figures it is not the right fit for him and he moves in with Mr. Turner, with whom he has become close.
The third season shows Cory finally admitting that he likes Topanga romantically and that wants to date her. Though it takes some trickery from Shawn, Cory tells Topanga how he feels and they become a couple. Their relationship lasts for a while, weathering Topanga's fear of a serious commitment and Shawn's jealousy that Cory is choosing his girlfriend over his best friend. Unfortunately, the couple find themselves in a rut and decide to break up while they are still able to keep the friendship. Though they find it difficult, they manage to stay friends. They get back together a few months later, when Cory and Shawn follow her to Disney World to win her back before she begins a relationship with another boy. Cory endures several tests of character this season; everything from wrongly being hailed a hero to being incessantly pursued by another girl while he is in a relationship with Topanga.
At the same time, Shawn also endures some hardships. He feels abandoned by his father and on occasion his best friend. We learn about his trailer park family and his wish to have a loving relationship like Cory instead of casually dating many different girls. Shawn rescues Cory from his tough relatives, proving that he considers Cory and the Matthews his real family. In turn, Cory goes looking for Shawn's father to convince him to come home to spend time with his son. Cory's relationship with his older brother, Eric, falls to the wayside in the third season. In the season finale, it all comes to a head and Cory reveals that he feels estranged from Eric and refuses to celebrate his brother's pre-college summer road trip, feeling somewhat abandoned. After some words from his parents, Eric invites Cory on the summer road trip so that they can bond as brothers alone together for the summer.
The fourth season kicks off with an enlightening road trip that was supposed to end, but has not because of Eric's fears. Cory and Eric talk about Eric's fears of life after high school and in the end, Eric returns home study and try to re-apply to college. Despite the road trip, Eric's life is still compartmentalized from Cory's except for some occasional talks at home, and the finale in which they take a trip to a beach college. They discuss Cory being seduced by another girl while Topanga is not there, sex, and why Eric wants to attend a party college rather than live up to his full potential.
There are several times when Cory feels insecure about his looks, especially his hair, likening himself to Mr. Potato Head or a piece of celery. A particularly important moment in season four is when Topanga drastically cuts her long hair off to prove a point about beauty and accidentally becomes even more attractive than she was before the haircut. Despite it all, Topanga assures Cory she loves him for who he is; a statement that is tested when her parents want to move over 300 miles away from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh. Topanga runs away to Cory after a few weeks and though Cory's parents do not really agree with what she did or their serious relationship, everyone seems glad that Topanga is allowed to stay with her Aunt Prudence (Olivia Hussey) until she graduates. Shawn's mother returns for a brief period, but then leaves again under unknown circumstances for seemingly no reason. Cory is there when Shawn turns to a cult to feel included in a family-like atmosphere, eventually embracing him tightly and assuring him he cares for Shawn, which is so far one of the more serious episodes of the series. The episode continues when he is there as Shawn loses another person; Mr. Turner is in a severe motorcycle accident in which he almost dies. Though he recovers, he is never seen on the series again (until Girl Meets World), though he is mentioned to be working "off-screen" in a later episode of the series.
The fifth season is the beginning of the college seasons for Eric. Cory is pleased to have his own room and helps Eric find a new roommate, so that he will permanently move out, at Pennbrook University. The roommate turns out to be Jack Hunter (Matthew Lawrence), Shawn’s long lost half-brother. Though Shawn hates the wealthy Jack at first, because Jack never contacted Shawn once throughout his life, he eventually comes around. Jack realizes that he never received any of Shawn's letters, because his mother intercepted them, and even moves into his apartment with both him and Eric. Early in the season, Cory and Topanga help Shawn find a mystery girl he falls in love with, simply due to the contents of her purse because they know how much he wants a relationship like theirs. Shawn finds Angela Moore (Trina McGee), and realizes he wants a relationship with her. The quartet enjoy many romantic moments, and even some problems, like the boys jealousy of the girls dancing at a club with their attractive male co-workers after waitressing together.
It all comes crashing down when Cory sprains his ankle at the school ski trip, when he befriends ski lodge worker, Lauren (Linda Cardellini), and the two kiss. When Shawn finds out, he urges Cory to lie to Topanga about it in order to salvage the relationship. Unfortunately, she finds out about the kiss, and the lie, and they break up, mostly because she believes that she cannot trust Cory anymore. The multi-episode arc finds Cory, upset about the break-up, resorting to drinking and later going out with Lauren to see if there is any real sparks there. He puts Shawn in a tough spot, making him subconsciously choose between him and Topanga, he chooses Cory but decides Topanga is still, and always will be, his friend, too. In a popular Halloween episode, Shawn reveals just how much their break-up has affected him, as though it haunts him, which forces Cory to apologize. Topanga forgives Cory after sharing a kiss with an old friend from grade school and realizes that a kiss can mean nothing, just as Cory told her after kissing Lauren.
Once reunited, Cory and Topanga attend prom together, where they are named King and Queen. On prom night, Cory's mother, Amy, announces that she is pregnant during a hotel room mix-up in which his parents also discover that Cory and Topanga were considering consummating their relationship. Mr. Feeny announces that he has decided to retire at the end of the school year, when the main group of friends graduates as the class of 1998, while Topanga is accepted to Yale University. Cory is worried about what will happen to their relationship after high school, but at graduation Topanga tells Cory that she decided not to go to Yale, but she wants to be with him and she proposes in a cliffhanger ending.
The sixth season picks up where last season left off as Topanga proposes. Cory accepts Topanga's proposal, but his parents are not pleased when they decide to run off and elope together. They think that they are foolish and too young to get married. However, she makes him see a reason to wait, when she decides that she wants a wedding with all of her friends and family there to celebrate with them, so they decide to have a long engagement and wait until they are ready. Everyone is in college with Cory, Topanga, Shawn, and Angela joining Jack and Eric at Pennbrook. Rachel McGuire (Maitland Ward), a new student from Texas, moves in with Eric and Jack after a bad break-up with her boyfriend, causing tension as both boys begin to have crushes on her. Cory struggles with enjoying college life and being seen as an boring because he is in a serious relationship and engaged, much unlike Shawn. He panics when he loses his engagement ring at a party, but later on he has nightmares about killing Shawn, which eventually digress into other nightmares in which he is killing all of his friends for Topanga. Near the end of the season, he is afraid that his life will completely change for the worse when he marries Topanga, and it seems that he may be right.
Angela and Shawn break up due to his claim that they should meet new people so that they both can have a full college experience on their own and have fun, unlike Cory and Topanga. Cory's optimistic views on romance have him trying to get his best friend back together with his girlfriend many times, but Angela rebuffs him, claiming he does not know her that well and that they are only friends because of her relationship with Shawn. This leads to Cory becoming more upset at the state of his relationship with Angela and successfully decides to prove that they have a real friendship. He resolves to get to know Angela, spend more time with her, and keep her secret that despite the break-up, she does still have feelings for Shawn, away from everyone, even Topanga. At the same time, Topanga keeps her own secret about Shawn still being in love with Angela. Mr. Feeny returns to the series take some classes and is offered a teaching position at the university. During their freshman year, Stuart, one of their professors, though seemingly young and interesting (played by Ben Savage's older brother Fred Savage) makes inappropriate sexual advances toward Topanga. Cory becomes mad enough to physically retaliate by pushing him through the student union doors. Cory is suspended, but for only one day; Dean Lila Bolander (Bonnie Bartlett; William Daniel's spouse) believes that Stuart severely crossed the line between professor and student. This is the first of many moments where Cory realizes that he is not a kid anymore.
Mr. Feeny and Dean Bolander's wedding is in the works in the season finale. They gradually developed feelings for one another over the course of the season. They have a small, intimate ceremony at the Matthews' house and Topanga finds out that her parents have been fighting and are beyond reconcile, planning a divorce, when they come into town to help plan Topanga's own wedding. This has Topanga shaken because she always looked up to her parents' perfect marriage as proof of true love. Cory quietly postpones their summer wedding and sits beside a crying Topanga at Mr. Feeny's wedding, unsure of what will happen to their relationship.
The seventh and final season of Boy Meets World begins with Cory and Topanga's break-up (the third one). Topanga's parents are divorced and she is disillusioned about true love. Angela supports her decision, refusing to be with Shawn even though he may be willing to get back together. Cory tries to set things right by trying to get Topanga's parents back together, but realizes that he is out of his element when he finds out that Topanga's father, Jedediah (Mark Harelik) was thrown out and is in love with another woman, with whom he had an affair. Cory realizes that sometimes love can die.
The girls move in with Rachel, kicking out Eric and Jack, so that they can bond together as women without men. Cory plans a date with another girl. It takes this, along with advice from Angela and her mother, Rhiannon (Marcia Cross) for Topanga to finally resume her relationship with Cory and to begin to plan their wedding once again.
The wedding planning festivities for Cory and Topanga begin in earnest. There are a lot of mishaps that occur during the planning and the days just before the ceremony, including an argument between Cory and Eric over who should be his best man, Shawn or Eric. Cory chooses his best friend over his older brother because his older brother has gotten progressively dumber and starts at least two fires right in front of Cory. Though Eric is not chosen to be the best man, he schemes for his little brother to have his wedding reception at the lavish Philadelphia Hotel, with a luxurious honeymoon suite. Shawn, who has been increasingly upset at Cory throughout the whole wedding planning, ultimately admits that he is no longer Cory’s best friend, and gives him away to Topanga, signifying a change in their "bromance." After a touching wedding and a lavish honeymoon, Cory and Topanga return home from Hawaii and find out that they have to live in a shabby apartment for married couples on campus because that is the only housing that they can afford. They struggle for a while, wondering why their parents refuse to help them and realize that reality and the real world can be hard sometimes. Eventually they realize that they are capable of doing everything on their own as a married couple, as long as they work together, and that this is what being an adult is all about anyway.
Eric is the one who feels estranged and slighted by Cory, feeling excluded by him and his relationships with both Shawn and Topanga. They get into a serious fight, even ending up at the hospital. By the end, they reach an understanding of sorts, realizing that their relationship has changed as they grew older and that that is okay. Cory tries to be there for Shawn as he goes through another bout of self-pity when his father suddenly dies, and he tries to advise Shawn when Angela reveals that she wants to leave to go to Europe with her military father to spend some time with him for an entire year. In the series finale, Cory is blindsided by Topanga who receives an internship at a law firm in New York City, but ultimately decides to support her and move to New York with her while she pursues her dreams. He extends the invitation to his best friend, Shawn, who decides to join and to Eric, who also tags along. Jack and Rachel, join the Peace Corps. The final scene shows Cory, Topanga, Shawn, and Eric meeting with Mr. Feeny in their old sixth grade classroom, with each one of them tearfully telling him how important that he was and is in their lives, thanking him for everything that he has taught them throughout their lives.
Cory's college major was never explicitly stated in Boy Meets World, leaving it unclear what his career path would be once he graduated. He ultimately pursued a career as a teacher. He and Topanga established themselves in New York City, with Topanga giving birth to their daughter Riley not long after the Boy Meets World series finale; eventually a son, Auggie, is also born to them.
In the sequel Girl Meets World, taking place several years after Boy Meets World, Cory and his wife Topanga are still living in New York City, and they have a daughter named Riley (Rowan Blanchard) and a son named Auggie (August Maturo). Just like how Boy Meets World was about Cory, Girl Meets World is about his daughter Riley. Cory has become a history teacher, where he taught at John Quincy Adams Middle School for the first two seasons before transitioning to Abigail Adams High School at the start of season 3. As their history teacher in both middle and high school, he looks after Riley and her best friend, Maya (Sabrina Carpenter), along with their friends and classmates Farkle Minkus (Corey Fogelmanis), Lucas Friar (Peyton Meyer), and Zay Babineaux (Amir Mitchell-Townes). His history lessons relate to the current events of Riley and her friend's lives, and become life lessons for them.
The series begins when Riley and her best friend, Maya, try to sneak out of her window to ride the subway, but are stopped by Riley's parents. They tell them that the "world" is now theirs and gives them the permission that they wanted to ride the subway on their own for the first time to school. In history class, Cory assigns the class to write an essay on something that they would fight for because they believe that it is worth it. Maya and Riley decide to fight for "no homework," which leads to accidentally setting off a smoke alarm., which are Easter egg references to Cory and Shawn from Boy Meets World, an episode in which Cory and Shawn decided to protest homework and the school week while doing a class assignment for Mr. Turner. Another in which Cory and Shawn accidentally start a fire and set off the alarm when breaking into the school to turn in a paper. Riley winds up choosing to fight for friendship instead and Cory and Topanga understand that Riley is growing up quickly before their eyes and that they need to be there for her a great deal throughout her growth process, just as they had parents and teachers there for them as they grew up. Mr. Feeny makes an appearance in the first episode in Cory's imagination, encouraging him as a parent and teacher.
When Cory's plan to force his students to communicate face to face fails because they are always on their cellular phones, he takes away their phones and assigns the entire class to prepare a discussion about whether technology has benefited people for the better or for the worse, something he did not experience as an adolescent. Cory ends up giving Maya a smartphone, her first one, and says to use it to communicate to him about Riley and to ask for anything from him whenever she needs someone, and he also buys Maya an art kit to encourage her to practice her artistic talents.
Cory and Topanga are not ready for Auggie or Riley to grow up yet when they meet a girl and boy at school that they like romantically. Riley tells Auggie that he should enjoy his age and not hurry to grow up either, just as Cory mentored to his younger sister, Morgan (Lily Nicksay), when he was Riley's age.
Cory struggles with his emotions when Riley wants to attend her first school dance instead of continuing the father-daughter tradition of riding the Coney Island Cyclone roller coaster on the same day every year. Maya gets an 'F' on a quiz in Cory's class and believes Cory has failed her as her teacher. When both girls tell him that there is nothing more that he can teach them, Cory feels he has lost them for good. Topanga assures him that he will never be able to give up on those he cares about, especially his daughter, because he learned the best from Mr. Feeny. Cory chaperones the school dance and for the last dance, he chooses to do a father-daughter dance with both Riley and Maya, because she does not have a father in her life, a role that he has taken over for her. One tradition ends but two new ones are created on the same day. In Boy Meets World, there are several episodes in which new father-son traditions end and begin anew. For example, in one episode, Cory and his family cannot go to the Jersey Shore to play miniature golf, so they build a course in their own backyard. In another episode, both Cory and his brother, Eric, are disappointed in the different relationships that they have with their father, so they begin new traditions to better fit their emotional needs in order to spend time together.
In one episode, Topanga antagonizes Cory after he insults her cooking skills.
Riley is invited to her first co-ed party, on in which Maya is not invited. She expects this to be her ticket to popularity, only to find that it is a "geek party." This episode mirrors an episode of Boy Meets World in which the same experience happens to Cory. When Riley realizes that she is adored by the nerds, she decides to become their "queen." By doing so, she reinvents herself to be popular, even if just among the "nerds." This prompts Maya to explain and show her that she is fine just the way she is, much like Shawn did for Cory earlier. Shawn Hunter was featured via the archive video footage in a flashback sequence from the Boy Meets World episode, "Cory's Alternative Friends."
On career day, Stuart Minkus turns out to be Farkle's father, and visits their school. A battle ensues between him and Topanga, an ongoing battle since childhood to be the smartest in the class. The battle began on screen when they were in the sixth grade, and continued in Stuart's guest appearance in the episode, "Graduation" of Boy Meets World. Maya's mother, Katy Hart, shows up a day late to Maya's embarrassment, and reveals to the class that she is a waitress and a struggling actress. This episode mirrors Boy Meets World when Shawn and Cory are embarrassed when their fathers are unemployed and a grocer, respectively. Lee Norris reprises his role as Stuart Minkus in this episode.
Isadora Smackle (Cecilia Balagot) is a debate champion from a rival school, Einstein Academy, a school that was also featured in the quiz show episode of Boy Meets World. She seeks the affection of her nemesis, Farkle, but he does not reciprocate. She turns to Riley and Maya to make her beautiful, much like an episode in Boy Meets World in which a "nerdy" girl seeks the help of Cory and Shawn to make her more beautiful through a makeover.
When Cory is teaching about the 1960s, he fails to inspire them. He assigns his class a project to research their ancestors lives during the time period. Riley finds out about her great-grandmother, Rosie McGee (Rhiannon Lawrence's mother and Topanga's maternal grandmother) who kept a journal and was always able to see the good in other people, much like Riley and Topanga. When recording in her journal that her new friend, May, Maya's ancestor, intends to travel to Topanga Canyon, Rosie says that it is a nice name for something someone loves, implying that, 20 years later, Rhiannon named her daughter Topanga as a result of Rosie's encounter with Maya, Lucas, and Farkle's ancestors and the entry in the journal. Rowan Blanchard, Sabrina Carpenter, Peyton Meyer, and Corey Fogelmanis all play the roles of their older ancestors in the café. There are several Boy Meets World episodes in which the characters go back in time.
In an episode, Cory splits the class up into two fake companies, much like Mr. Feeny does for a class project in Boy Meets World.
In an effort to teach his students to remember "the forgotten," Cory assigns the class to their school service electives when they show a lack of respect for the lunch food and cafeteria workers. The girls are assigned to cafeteria duty and work with Geralyn Thompson (Sonya Eddy), the cafeteria director, who resembles and reminds Cory of lunch lady from his high school days whom made a large impact on his life when passed away and very few other students seemed to care or notice. She even knows how he enjoys his mashed potatoes, much like his old lunch lady did in high school. The boys receive janitorial duty and work with janitor Harley Keiner, whom Cory is now friends with since their high school days, and helped him to get a job at John Quincy Adams.
In one episode, Riley and Maya create their "Stop It" version of the "Handshake of Awesomeness," a handshake created by Cory and Shawn when they were young. In the same episode, the Griff Hawkins Totally Cool Award is awarded to Riley, named after Griffin "Griff" Hawkins (Adam Scott) in Boy Meets World. The Joseph T.R. Epstein Confidence Award was also awarded to Farkle after Joseph "Joey the Rat" Epstein (Blake Soper), one of Harley Keiner's and later Griff Hawkins's lackeys, in Boy Meets World.
Cory teaches about government as the election for seventh grade student council nears, just as Mr. Turner once did for Shawn, Topanga, and him. Soon, their friendship is put to the test when Maya (on Riley's behalf) engages in negative campaigning, which annoys Lucas, just as Cory, Shawn, and Topanga once experienced. Meanwhile, Auggie wants both of his parents to be there to tuck him in at night, but they both work long hours.
On Cory and Topanga's 15th wedding anniversary (which would be November 5, 2014), Auggie needs a babysitter so that his parents can have a date night together. Auggie suggests that Riley should babysit him, just as Cory suggested to his mother that he should babysit his younger sister, Morgan, when he was young. Cory and Topanga decide to return home to spy on the kids and see how well Riley is babysitting Auggie.
Cory's parents, Alan and Amy, his now teenage brother, Joshua, and his best friend, Shawn, visit for the Christmas holiday. Maya develops a crush on Joshua, who is only two years older than her, much like Topanga did when she was very young on Cory's brother, Eric. Shawn admits that after Riley was born, he felt left behind because his best friend had just begun a family of his own, so he left New York City that day. The feeling is similar to the one he felt when Cory and Topanga finally got married. Cory encourages Shawn to find someone to begin his own family.
Family Game Night is a monthly tradition at the Matthews' apartment. Auggie invites a special family member, Uncle Josh. Cory stresses the importance of family with the game night (as well as in his teaching of the American Revolution to his class earlier that day), but is agitated over the extra guests of Riley's friends.
Cory embraces the idea of "first love" at the end of the school year, until he realizes that Riley is among those of his students that is beginning to experience it with Lucas. As Cory desperately tries to keep them apart, Lucas asks Cory and Topanga for their blessing to date their daughter. Believing that Riley is too young to be dating, Cory agrees to the date on the condition that it is a double date, with Maya and Farkle.
In a special episode after season 1, Riley and Maya want money to buy their own clothes. Riley sees a pretty dress and Maya tries to convince Riley not to buy it, but Riley does and uses an emergency credit card with a credit limit of $500, spending $300. Cory finds out and while trying to remedy the situation himself, he ends up being scammed. Topanga is irritated by the circumstances and Cory then tells Topanga that they all spent $1200 on clothes.
Riley, Maya, Lucas, and Farkle start their first day of 8th grade at John Quincy Adams Middle School. After the girls startle their new teacher, Mr. Martinez, he quits and Cory replaces him. Riley and Maya then decide to transfer classes so that they will have a different teacher, but their new history teacher is very strict. Four kids in the class look and act just like Riley, Maya, Lucas, and even Farkle, forcing the girls to later transfer back to Cory's classroom. However, the girls are devastated because their parents are always around them (with Cory once again their history teacher and Topanga and Katy working at the newly purchased and renamed Topanga's together).
It is revealed Mrs. Svorski has died and Riley speaks at her funeral. Cory later calls Mr. Feeny to check in on him and make sure that he is okay, and he is fine. William Daniels reprises his role as Mr. Feeny.
Riley and Lucas confirm that they are dating, telling Cory and Topanga about a kiss that they shared, which Cory did not know about.
Cory tests the student foursome to wash a car in order to discover the true meaning to the secret of life.
The gang discovers that Cory, Shawn, and Topanga buried a time capsule 15 years ago in Mr. Feeny's backyard, something that was not mentioned nor played out in the Boy Meets World series. It would have been the same year that the trio moved to New York. They head to Philadelphia to dig it up and discover what is inside.
Riley and Maya get into a huge argument which threatens their friendship. The feud prompts Cory to call on his older brother Eric to mediate, recalling his people skills in settling a feud when they were in college. This episode references a feud in which the gang almost lost their close friend, Rachel (Maitland Ward), when she feels hurt and betrayed by the tight-knit group of friends. After Eric, now the mayor of a small town on the border of the U.S. and Canada, arrives at the Matthews'. Eric is later a guest in Cory's class.
Uncle Josh visits Cory and his family and is accepted into NYU, Topanga's law school, much to Maya's delight because of his future proximity. There is a welcoming party for Josh at a friend's dormitory at the university, which Maya is determined to attend. Maya intends to have a sleepover at Riley's and sneak out, much like Shawn snuck out of Cory's house when they were younger. Though Riley knows it is wrong, she decides to accompany Maya in order to look out for her.
Cory gives his entire class detention. While Cory is out of the classroom, the class splits into two separate groups, one led by Riley and the other by Maya. Danny McNulty guest stars again as Harley Keiner.
When Riley's English teacher retires, a new teacher named Harper Burgess takes his place. She has an unconventional teaching style that inspires the students, especially Maya, but soon gets in trouble with Principal Yancy for using The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller as subject matter, which is much like what occurs when Mr. Turner becomes the new teacher for Cory, Shawn, and Topanga at John Adams High. When Cory stands up to defend this new teacher, his job is placed in jeopardy as well. Jonathan Turner (who is now working as the school superintendent for New York City) is called in to see if she is worthy of staying on as a teacher. He mentions that he taught X-Men to his class, and in regards to To Kill a Mockingbird, mentions that since her dad named her Harper Lee Burgess, that she probably is aware of the novel since it was written by Harper Lee. Anthony Tyler Quinn reprises his role as Mr. Turner.
Cory's history lesson about Iceland and Greenland and how people settled in Greenland because of its name, then perished, serves as a reminder to the class not to be misguided all of the time by what others might say.
Results of a school IQ test show Farkle to be a genius, and the Minkuses hold a party for their son at Topanga's. Isadora Smackle comes to the party and invites Farkle to transfer to the Einstein Academy, much like Cory experiences in an early episode of Boy Meets World when he cheats on an IQ test and is interviewed to attend a school for gifted children. Lee Norris appears again as Minkus and Kristanna Loken reprises her role as Jennifer Bassett Minkus.
Riley wonders how she will positively impact the world, and feels that she will never be as "perfect" as her parents. Riley is reminded about being in her parents' shadow when she sees them contributing positively to the world. Maya suggests that Riley should tell some stories that she remembers about her parents' younger days (from Boy Meets World), and the two see Cory and Topanga when they were their age, young teenagers. As Riley sees a little of both of her parents in her, including their quirks, she is reminded by the younger Topanga that she is unique.
The two girls and the rest of Cory's class are learning how to resolve conflicts. He uses Aaron Burr-Alexander Hamilton conflict as the class example.
Cory worries about his daughter's desire to become a cheerleader. Despite this he encourages her to continue pursuing something she is passionate about.
Ben Savage is absent as Cory Matthews in the episode, "Girl Meets Texas: Part 1."
When Cory comes up with the idea of a forgiveness project, everyone expresses their feelings on paper to someone they wish to forgive. As Maya and the rest of Cory's class miss the biggest point of forgiveness, Cory explains to them that they need to give those that they are forgiving an opportunity to show remorse for their wrongdoing before the assignment can even begin. Maya tearfully confesses to Cory that she failed the assignment, but Cory explains to her that he never expected her to reconcile with her father right away, if ever.
After Maya finds money just outside of Cory's classroom, she wants to buy ice cream with it, but Riley tells her it is not her money to keep. Cory has the class look at each other's beliefs and he assigns Riley and Maya to report about Thomas Jefferson, and Lucas and Farkle to report about Joan of Arc. Cory gives them insight about why their beliefs are different, and he tells them that listening to others helps them to form their own beliefs.
During one of his classes, Cory teaches the importance of friendship and growth and how, without proper care, certain feelings can ruin friendships.
As Cory teaches his class about the value of money, and Stuart Minkus makes a risky investment on new technology for Minkus International, Farkle becomes concerned about possibly becoming poor and starts believing that there is a greater value to his friendships and family than money can give to a person. Cory goes further by emphasizing that there is a large part of the world that is less fortunate, revealing a greater "secret of life": kindness and charity toward others. Cory challenges the class to come up with ideas for using money to help those in need. With help from NBA owner, Mark Cuban, Stuart, Cory, and Topanga listen to Riley, Lucas, Farkle, and Maya about how they can help the less fortunate. Meanwhile, Auggie worries about his father when he does not receive his whole allowance and learns the importance of Cory's contributions as a teacher, despite the fact that he is paid less than Topanga. Lee Norris guest stars in this episode once again as Minkus.
Riley, who finds out Maya cheated off Farkle on a test, wants them off the hook for the sake of their friendship, but Lucas disagrees, as does Cory, who oversees the honor board. When Cory's class learns about communism, Riley defends Maya's cheating as a form of sharing and feels that there is nothing wrong with it. After Cory hands back a test where everyone has received excellent scores, except Riley, Maya, and Farkle, who end up with "average" grades, the three realize the importance of being individuals and having an American system of government - a democracy.
The girls reflect on when they first became friends, as well as when they first met Farkle, much like Cory and Shawn reflect in Boy Meets World.
Cory teaches his class one last time before they move to high school, but the kids feel that Cory has not given them enough instruction to move on. Cory admits to being wrong about not allowing them to feel change as natural, but sees how much they have learned in middle school. He challenges them to leave a lasting mark for future John Quincy Adams students. They decide for their class prank to steal their school mascot, which shocks Cory. The mascot is Cory. Cory is allowed to transfer schools so that he can continue to teach Riley and her friends in high school, much like Mr. Feeny moved on to be the principal at John Adams High School after finishing as the teacher of Cory, Shawn, and Topanga at Jefferson Elementary. Lee Norris guest stars as Stuart Minkus as does Danny McNulty as Harley Keiner.Along with Shawn, he is one of only two characters to appear in all 158 episodes of Boy Meets World.
He is the only character to be a main cast member in every season of the Meets World franchise.
He is also one of two characters to be a part of the main cast in both series.
Was born on a reputedly drizzling day at Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Cory is a huge WWF (now WWE) fan, as was young Ben Savage, as shown in the real-life footage used as a Matthews' family home movie.
He had braces as a child, but was using a retainer by age eleven.
Wore glasses when he was very young.
Cory loves pudding and grapes.
Cory has flat feet.
Cory's favorite ice cream flavor is vanilla.
Cory cannot spell his best friend Shawn's name.
Cornelius happens to be his real name though nicknamed Cory. It has been stated that even Topanga does not know this and Shawn is assumed to not know this either.
Cory is a hypochondriac.
Cory is terrified of change.
There are a few comparisons between Mr. Williams and Cory, and Mr. Turner and Shawn, respectively. For example, in, "The Pink Flamingo Kid," it is shown that both Cory and Mr. Williams cannot sweep their hands through their hair and in, "My Best Friend's Girl," Shawn asked Cory's crush, Topanga, out just like Mr. Turner apparently did to Mr. Williams as well.
Cory loves Backgammon.
Cory is very insecure about his curly hair. This is pointed out in at least four different episodes, notably, "Cory's Alternative Friends" (where he tries to straighten it but fails miserably), "Pairing Off" (where he is jealous of Shawn's hair since stroking it attracts girls to him), "The Pink Flamingo Kid" (where Shawn brags to Cory about his hair, angering Mr. Williams as mentioned above), and, "Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow" (where Cory, still insecure about his hair, requires Topanga's help to realize it's not a big deal). Cory and Eric once stated that Cory's hair only became curly after their neglectful babysitter did not prevent Cory from riding inside the clothes dryer—but that may have been an inside joke.
Cory is left-handed.
Cory once appeared in an episode of Maybe This Time, another show by Michael Jacobs, in which, while listening to Shawn's trepidations over setting both the gym and cafeteria of Adams High ablaze, the pair meta-interacted with the main young female lead, Gracie, across her television set. Later they are called back to their own show by the voice of Mr. Feeny and Cory asks, "How does he always find us?"
In Boy Meets World, Cory joked to Shawn in the episode, "Boy Meets Girl," how he and Topanga would get married and have kids.
Throughout the series run of Boy Meets World, Cory has traveled back in time three times, once in, "I Was a Teenage Spy," second, "No Guts, No Cory," and third in, "As Time Goes By."
The "A" in his middle name is currently unknown. It is possibly his father's name, Alan.
He had a cat, Fluffy, who died after falling from a tree.
His first line in Boy Meets World was, "Good Morning Mr. Feeny."
Cory has a great dislike of wool. The reasons given for this vary; he says once that he has an allergy for it but later just complains that it chafes.
He is the first Boy Meets World character to appear in Girl Meets World.
His daughter, Riley, is closer to her mother than Cory, though he shares many similarities to her.
In Boy Meets World, it was never stated what Cory majored in college, but he became a history teacher as seen at the start of Girl Meets World.
He kept Lucas's past from everyone (except from Topanga) a complete secret for over a year in Girl Meets World.
"Girl Meets Smackle" is the only episode in Girl Meets World that he appears in a minor role, rather than a large role.
Cory is absent in "Girl Meets Texas (Part 2)" during season 2 of Girl Meets World, which is the only episode he is absent for throughout the series so far.
Like the rest of his family, Cory is an ardent fan of all the Philadelphia professional sport franchises: Phillies (MLB), Eagles (NFL), 76ers (NBA), and Flyers (NHL). It is unknown if he has adopted any NYC teams, but due to his loyalty and reluctance towards change in general, along with New York and Philadelphia's numerous heated sports rivalries, it is doubtful.
Ben Savage, who portrayed Cory Matthews, also directs several episodes of Girl Meets World in seasons 2 and 3.