/‘Boy Meets World’ Cast Recalls Befriending Co-Star Later Convicted Of Child Molestation

‘Boy Meets World’ Cast Recalls Befriending Co-Star Later Convicted Of Child Molestation

Monday’s episode of “Pod Meets World” took a dour turn as Will Friedle and Rider Strong, the former child stars of “Boy Meets World” who host the reflective podcast, detailed their former friendship with Brian Peck — a Season 5 guest star and convicted child molester.

The otherwise lighthearted podcast invited family therapist Kati Morton to explore “the difficult subjects of grooming, childhood sexual abuse, and their effects on victims” after its hosts were contacted to participate in an upcoming documentary on the subject.

Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV,” an Investigation Discovery series, airs in March.

Strong and Friedle were teenagers when “Boy Meets World” premiered in 1993. Peck was in his 40s when he joined the ABC show for a two-episode arc in 1997 and befriended them.

According to court documents obtained in 2015 by The Daily Mail, however, Peck was accused in 2004 of child molestation and pleaded no contest. He was reportedly convicted of a lewd act against a child and oral copulation of a person under 16 and spent 16 months in prison.

“This guy had so ingrained himself into my life, I took him to three shows after ‘Boy Meets World,’” Friedle said Monday. “This was the type of thing where the person he presented was this great, funny guy who was really good at his job, and you wanted to hang out with.”

He added, “I saw him every day, hung out with him every day, talked to him every day.”

The hosts claimed they initially had no idea how serious the allegations were, as Peck allegedly told his newfound friends his accuser purposefully tricked him by claiming he was of age.

“It was always in the context of, ‘I did this thing, I am guilty, I am going to take whatever punishment the government determines, but I am a victim of jailbait,’” said Strong. “‘There was this hot guy. I just did this thing, and he’s underage.’ And we bought that storyline.”

Strong, Fishel, and Friedle were joined Monday by family therapist Kati Morton.
Strong, Fishel, and Friedle were joined Monday by family therapist Kati Morton.

David Livingston/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Friedle only realized the true gravity after he and Strong agreed to support Peck in court and with letters to the judge, only for the victims’ mother to scold Peck at trial: “Look at all the famous people you brought with you, and it doesn’t change what you did to my kid.”

“It was like, ‘What the hell am I doing here?’” Friedle recalled Monday. “It was horrifying all the way around. We weren’t told the whole story, but it doesn’t change the fact that we did it. I still can’t get the words out to describe all of the things that I’m feeling inside of myself.”

Fellow co-host and “Boy Meets World” alum Danielle Fishel previously recalled creepy experiences with older men on set.

Peck is one of several subjects who were interviewed for the documentary, which will chronicle allegations of misconduct by Nickelodeon staffers. Dan Schneider, who produced hit shows like “iCarly” and “Zoey 101,” is set to feature prominently.

Nickelodeon reportedly parted ways with Schneider in March 2018 amid reports that he was verbally abusive towards staffers. The Los Angeles Times reported in 2022 that an internal ViacomCBS investigation found this was the case.

Schneider was accused as recently as 2022 of misconduct and “sexualized scenes.” He previously denied those allegations in an interview with The New York Times, however, and told the outlet in 2021: “The comedy, was totally innocent.”

Original Source