Browse the Garden

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Logic versus Emotions: A Girl Meets World Theory

Farkle has been friends with Riley and Maya since he was little, and he's been in love with Riley since the first grade, but he's equally in love with Maya. 
There's a question that's been hanging over his head for awhile: Is he a robot or a real boy? 

He calls Riley "Day" and Maya "Night". He's "The biggest flirt in the seventh grade" and he's always there for Riley and Maya when they need him. 
So who is Farkle? How does he really feel? 

This theory explores Farkle's personality, his choices and how he truly feels. 
Prepare yourselves: This one's rough. 
We'll start with the day Farkle introduces himself to Riley and Maya: 

Farkle sees Riley and Maya at a Halloween party, and he saves Riley's life by helping her out of the apple bowl while she's bobbing for apples. She's flattered by this and asks what she can do to repay him. When Riley says that she's not smart, Farkle explains that Riley and Maya could use a friend like him, because he promises to love them both the same. Riley asks what if he married one of them, and he replies with the same answer, "both of you the same." 
It's a sweet promise, but what he says next implies how he actually feels about himself: 

What he says suggests that he has to be used, because he is smart. Sadly, this idea comes from Farkle's home life. 

Education matters to Farkle. He celebrates his seven hundredth "A" in Girl Meets Father. 

Farkle is the son of Stuart Minkus, who loved Topanga ( and possibly has never gotten over that) 

We see a hint of this in Girl Meets Maya's Mom, when Topanga and Stuart compete with each other. 

Money matters a lot to Farkle, just like it matters to Stuart Minkus. In Crazy Hat and Friendship, we see how far Farkle will go to "give the people what they want." 

But where did he did get that idea? 

Well, in Girl Meets The New World, Farkle gives us a hint: 

Farkle's mother is Jennifer Basset. We get a glimpse of his parents' relationship in I Am Farkle. 

This episode is also when Farkle learns that he is a real boy, a moment that means the world to him. 

But Girl Meets Money makes it abundantly clear just how lonely Farkle is, despite his parents' money and success. 
This theme is repeated throughout the show. Money isn't everything. 

So, with that background in mind, here's Farkle, trying to win a girl's affection and getting constantly rejected. But which girl? He loves Riley and Maya both the same, right? But who does he pursue first every time? Riley. 
Okay, so every time Farkle pursues Riley, what happens? 
She rejects him or Maya stops Riley from saying yes.
I can only imagine how that would make a boy in love feel :( 

Not to mention, Farkle doesn't feel like he's part of the story: 

Then in Girl Meets Flaws, Farkle gets bullied. How does he respond to this? 
Despite winning the confidence award, Farkle hides out, until Riley convinces him otherwise.
The whole class joins in. He is touched by their concern. 

In Girl Meets Farkle's Choice, we see a significant difference in how Farkle treats Riley, and how he treats Maya. 

But how do they treat him most of the time? They take him for granted. :( 

Constant rejection, and constant indifference. Despite Farkle's failed attempts, he still pursues the girl. 

Okay, but why doesn't Farkle step up and say anything? Remember the pilot episode?
Farkle doesn't like fighting. I wonder why? 

When Lucas enters the picture, Farkle begins a war within himself. 
Think about it: he loves this girl. She rejects him. She's pursuing someone else. 
But the moment this struggle becomes clear to the audience is Girl Meets First Date. 
I think this is the moment Farkle could no longer convince himself that he loved Riley and Maya the same. 
Before anything happens, Farkle has a very logical conversation with Lucas: 
He believes that he's solved his problem. Then Maya asks Lucas out, and Farkle looks really happy to be with Riley, but he's also a very observant person. 

He notices Riley's reaction, still he stays confident. 
But by the time he arrives: it's too late. 
This is where the writers attempt to distract their audience. They have this "comical" scene between Maya and Cory, where Cory forces Maya to go out with Farkle in order for Riley to date Lucas. So how does Farkle feel? Take a look: 
Crushed would be my guess. Still, he puts on the act, becomes "the flirt" with Maya and proceeds to go along with this. 
But during their date? He stares at Riley quite a bit, kisses Maya's hand, and when she's impressed, he says, "Tell your friends." 
You mean Riley? 
So now the kids are teasing each other about relationships, and Farkle thinks he's got to move fast. He takes his mother's ring and gives it to Maya. But, when he learns why she took the ring, well :( 

So Farkle's starting to get upset now, but he holds that back. Lucas is his friend, right?  He believes in peace. Time to ignore feelings and focus on logic. 
But he doesn't succeed. On several ocassions, Farkle bursts out with anger and frustration. We learn why in Girl Meets Mr. Squirrels. 
He bursts out that he feels bad because of Lucas, but again his outburst is ignored. 
So now he's cynical, passive and playing the part. :( 
It's not until Girl Meets Pluto that Farkle begins to hope again. And what does he put in the time capsule? 

What does he say? 
So, now Farkle believes that maybe, just maybe those feelings would be returned. Because Riley was there for him. 
But throughout season two, what happens? Lots of distractions. Riley is pulled away from him, blows him off and focuses on Lucas. 
Yearbook comes next, where Farkle completely changes who he is: 
Then, in Girl Meets I Am Farkle, he goes through a major scare. All he wants is support from his friends and . . .
So Riley and Maya push him toward Smackle. And Smackle accepts Farkle for who he is, despite the possibility that he could be different. This is new to Farkle. 
Farkle "divorces" Riley and Maya, because he knows that their marriages to him aren't real. He decides to pursue a real relationship with Smackle, and go figure out love. 

Then, Riley gets bullied. Farkle is the first to notice. He says something pretty interesting as he explains Riley's behavior to Maya: 

He's also very supportive of Riley in Girl Meets Rah Rah. 
Then, Farkle and Riley have a very intense argument in Stem. They learn how to work together as a team. And both learn something important. 
Then Girl Meets Texas happens. It's all about Lucas. Farkle feels left out, and he shows it in an interesting way: 

 Farkle also becomes confused again. Why? Well . . .
That sounds like a date, right? But Farkle has a girlfriend now, and Riley's more focused on what's going on with Maya and Lucas than how Farkle feels at that moment. 
Then Farkle learns how Riley actually feels. 
What Farkle says about feelings here is very important.
But then Riley says that she loves him. 
And he says it back. 
Platonic or not, Farkle's face says it all as Riley leaves for her date. 
Farkle doesn't want anyone to get hurt, but he can't watch Riley suffer. He cares for her too much. He'll do anything for Riley, as he's proven time and time again. 
He reveals Riley's feelings, just like Riley revealed Maya's in Texas. 
Then Riley calls Farkle handsome in Bay Window, which flatters him and confuses him again. 
And he is rejected again. 
He's pretty confused at that point, and it appears logic won't give him an answer. All evidence he gathered points to the possibility that Riley loves him, but she continues to reject him. That's why he asks Mr. Norton an important question: 
By the time High School rolls around, Farkle has no idea what's going on anymore, with High School or his feelings. 
Then Riley says: 
And the triangle begins. 
By now, Farkle has had it. He blows up a few times. 
But in Upstate, Farkle has lost all hope that Riley could ever be with him. He sees her reaction to Lucas supposedly choosing her, and that's when Farkle goes from anger to sadness. 
He explodes again in Girl Meets True Maya, while Riley is talking about how "charming" Lucas is.

He tells Riley he's dead inside. 
He notices Smackle flirting with other guys: 
He asks Topanga if he's growing right. 
He's lost all sense of who he used to be, because the girls took advantage of him. It's no wonder Farkle is struggling. 
He's trying to hold back all his emotions in favor of peace, but feelings must be acknowledged, and  . . . 

Mt. Farkleuvious is going to blow, because Farkle needs to vent. He's held back all this for too long. 
Riley needs to save her hero. 

And because history repeats, I believe she will. 


  1. You should've added in the part in true Maya when Riley is laughing at lucas and farkle bursts out "he's a face! He's just a face! What's the matter with you?