‘Boy Meets World’: What Happened to Topanga’s Sister?

Boy Meets World followed the lives of Corey Matthews and his friends as they grew up and entered the real world. Viewers watched as Corey and his band of friends traversed junior high, high school, and college together throughout seven seasons. Corey’s long-standing love for Topanga Lawrence was a core story arc, and thusly, Topanga’s life and family were important to fans, but something weird happened in Topanga’s family in the break between season 1 and season 2. Topanga’s sister, Nebula Lawrence, disappeared never to be mentioned again. So, what exactly happened to Nebula? Redditors have some theories.

Topanga had a sister during the first season of Boy Meets World

Topanga’s odd upbringing was heavily featured during the first season of Boy Meets World. Her parents were mentioned repeatedly, by their first names, and Topanga’s sister even came to pick her up from the Matthews’ home once.

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The oddly named Nebula was much older than her younger sister, but the pair seemed like they were supposed to be close. In fact, Topanga mentioned her more than once during the first season of the series. Then, Nebula disappeared without a trace. When Topanga cut her hair, she lost more than her signature crimped styling. She lost her sibling all together. So, what happened to Nebula, and why did she vanish from the Boy Meets World Universe?

Fans theorize that Nebula’s disappearance prompted the sudden change in Topanga

After the first season, Topanga changed substantially. The incredibly free-spirited, crimped-hair Topanga was replaced with a much more subdued character. While it was largely inferred that Topanga toned down her look to fit in once she moved into junior high, fans have a different theory. One fan theory suggests that Nebula died, and the trauma prompted the massive change in Topanga’s personality.

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Another Redditor suggested that Nebula, upon graduation from high school, leaves her family behind and joins a cult. Blaming themselves for pushing their free-spirited beliefs on both of their children, The Lawrences encourage Topanga to fit in more with her peers, which would explain why Topanga changed so much in such a short time.

It’s most likely a continuity issue

While the fan theories are certainly interesting, the disappearing Nebula is more likely to be a continuity issue.  In later seasons, Topanga is referred to as an only child. If Nebula had died or joined a cult, one would think the writers would have avoided speaking about Topanga’s family life, or her placement within her family entirely.

Danielle Fishel as Topanga Lawrence, Rider Strong as Shawn Hunter sand Ben Savage as Corey Matthews
Danielle Fishel as Topanga Lawrence, Rider Strong as Shawn Hunter sand Ben Savage as Corey Matthews | Craig Sjodin/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

The writers of Boy Meets World seemingly had a habit of messing up the family structures of the main characters. Shawn Hunter, for example, had a sister in season 1, as well. Shawn’s sister, Stacey Hunter, is never actually seen, but Shawn refers to her and calls her during one episode. After that, she completely disappears and is never mentioned again. Reportedly, Shawn was never supposed to have a sister but was given the lines belonging to another character. That character was supposed to have a sister, but the role was cut from the series at the last minute.