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Shawn From 'Boy Meets World' Had The Most Depressing Backstory In All Of TGIF Programming

Updated November 5, 2019 8.1k views15 items

If you grew up watching Boy Meets World and/or are currently checking out its spin-off, Girl Meets World, then you already know that poor Shawn has had it rough. From the earliest 1993 episodes of Boy Meets World, Shawn Hunter just can't catch a break. The rebellious best friend of Cory Matthews, it seems like Shawn is always being abandoned, getting into trouble, or trying to understand why he hasn't been all that great at functional relationships with anyone except his best friend, Cory. 

Here you'll find a collection of evidence that shows that Shawn has one of the most depressing backstories of all time. From problems at school to his intimacy issues, Shawn always seems to be grappling with one issue or another. Considering how much he had to go through growing up, however, you may just end up marveling at the fact that he turned out as well as he did.    

  • He Goes To Work For The Mob

    Photo: ABC

    In an episode called "Easy Street," Shawn discovers that Cory has accidentally taken a job working for the mob. After Cory immediately quits, Shawn decides to take a risk and ends up signing on for the position himself. How bad could it be, right?

    At first, things seem to be going well, as Shawn finds himself well compensated for completing a number of increasingly shady tasks. Ultimately, however, Shawn (with Cory's help) realizes that getting in deep with the mob is probably not the best life choice and respectfully vacates his position. 

  • He Is Repeatedly Left Homeless 

    Photo: ABC

    With Shawn's dad, Chet, always taking off, Shawn ends up homeless several times. During Season 2, he stays with Cory and the Matthews but doesn't take well to following their rules. As time goes on with no word from his dad, Shawn begins to think that he'll never have a home and compares himself to a stray dog.

    When his dad finally does call, it's only to say that he's not coming back any time soon. Cory's dad gets upset and, not realizing Shawn is listening, tries to explain to Chet that they can't keep Shawn forever. Feeling unwanted, Shawn attempts to run away but finally ends up staying with his English teacher, Mr. Turner. 

  • He Joins A Cult

    Photo: ABC

    In an episode called "Cult Fiction," Shawn meets a girl at school who introduces him to a sketchy place called "The Center." With promises of being accepted for who he is, Shawn decides that joining the cult might finally give him a sense of belonging.

    In the end, it takes learning that his mentor, Mr. Turner, has been in a horrible motorcycle accident to snap him back to reality.

  • He's Super Jealous When Cory Marries Topanga

    Photo: ABC

    Given that Cory and Shawn have always been the best of friends, Shawn has a really hard time when Cory finally marries Topanga in Season 7. He gets so upset at the thought of Topanga taking his place as Cory's new best pal, that he storms out and causes a huge amount of problems that almost ruin the wedding altogether. In the end, he comes to his senses and shows back up just in the knick of time, but even admits in his speech at the reception that the end of he and Cory's bromance has been super hard for him.

    "Cory and I have been best friends all our lives. And, um, this wedding’s been kinda hard for me because I know - no matter how much we may avoid talking about it - Cory and I aren’t gonna be best friends forever." Talk about bittersweet.