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The events years after The War and Seven the Hard Way may or may not have happened without the fight. Despite making up, many go their separate ways - Jack is basically a stranger; Rachel and Jack don't even talk, Angela and Shawn are basically estranged, Shawn goes away from Cory...
Perhaps resolving the problem so quickly was just an emotional bandaid. Sure seemed to me like it was a "okay, I'm sick of fighting, we were okay before - group hug!"
It's not surprise to find out in the series' continuation that the events happened - most especially Rachel's abscence. However, one must also take into account the actress's penchant for nudity. While it was slightly alluded to in Boy Meets World, now it is rampant - perhaps the events in these two connected episodes made it convenient to explain away Rachel, due to the actions from the actress portraying her. I cannot imagine Rachel returning while the actress is searchable by kids and they can find her showing body parts females should have covered.
So, if the episodes had never happened?
- The connection Shawn and Angela shared was not marred by the events. Angela was pissed at Shawn, but this was a regular occurence.
- I think Cory/Topanga/Shawn/Rachel would be closer.
- Jack and Shawn would be somewhat closer.
Another point I want to bring up is Feeny. He had a chance to enter into the group hug, even in a small amount or just lightly put his arms around. Possibly it wasn't just a simple refusal. He may have seen right then and there the triteness of the hug; seeing before his eyes that the group was irreversibly shaken. Or it could have been foreshadowing. The show was very successful and ended early (by early, meaning cut off in the middle of a life change); someone had to know it would someday be brought back again. Feeny breaking off from the group could have been the start. Or perhaps Feeny is out with the old, and the gang is in with the new, which can mean either starting new, grand relationships or breaking out of their old grand one and starting to break apart.
This episode is definitely important for Boy Meets World virgins to watch.
Teachers reading this, you may now irrigate your eyeballs and bleach your brains.