You could do a lot worse than getting to play Topanga Lawrence during your formative years.
Though Danielle Fishel admittedly had some catching up to do when it came to matching the maturity of the 11-year-old when Boy Meets World premiered in 1993.
“When Topanga was first created I felt she was very different from me,” the actress, who played her throughout her teens and again in her 30s, told E! News in an exclusive interview. “She talked slower, she was very sure of herself. She had a lot of strong feminist beliefs that young Danielle had never even thought about.”
But eventually, Fishel continued, “we started to become more one in the same, and I don’t know where the line starts to blur.”
To this day, she added, “I don’t know how much of who Danielle is, is because of the way Topanga was, or vice versa. I describe Topanga as just being on the other side of my heart—at any given point in time, I can click into it. She is I and I am she. “
And she’s not mad about it—not least because the 41-year-old knows actors can spend their whole careers hoping to play a part that means something to people, and she won the brass ring almost right out of the gate.