Shawn Hunter was to Cory Matthews as Annie Hall was to Woody Allen: he was Cory's Manic Pixie Dream Girl, but with better hair and (probably) a lot more Offspring in his boombox. Shawn was the troublemaker (by ABC standards, his various acts of rebellion included cherry bombs and hanging out in the "wrong crowd") with a heart of gold. Boy Meets World needed Shawn Hunter like a really white, middle-class family show needs a poor kid who lives in a trailer park and one time cross-dressed.
It's devastating to report, then, that Rider Strong will not join the regular cast of Girl Meets World. As part of a long, wistful note on his website, Strong wrote:
At this point, I have no official involvement in Girl Meets World. There might be a chance to see some of the BMW cast in a guest spot, and I think it would be nice to find out where our characters have been all these years. But Girl Meets World will be, and I think it should be, it’s own show. It will be about Cory and Topanga, their daughter, and a new set of characters.
Well, that's too bad, Rider, because this completely conflicts with my storyline for the show, which involves Shawn living in a studio apartment above Cory and Topanga's garage and all of them eating breakfast together.
Recently, Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel confirmed their involvement with Girl Meets World, though no other former cast members have signed on (Strong is the first to break our hearts).