After the failed Disney Channel pilot, Carpenter got to work on a pilot for ABC and Fox, which allowed her to experience the pilot processes on other networks. She landed a recurring role on Fox’s The Goodwin Games, which starred Scott Foley and TJ Miller, but the show was canceled after seven episodes.
But then Carpenter’s next project, Girl Meets World, took off. Carpenter actually heard of the planned sequel to the beloved ‘90s comedy Boy Meets World from TMZ. As a fan of the original show, she knew she wanted to be a part of the sequel.
The show features Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel reprising their roles as Cory and Topanga Matthews, but focuses on their daughter Riley (Rowan Blanchard) and her best friend Maya (Carpenter).
Carpenter initially auditioned for the role of Riley, and after a long audition process, she was asked to come in and read a script that she wasn’t allowed to read beforehand. This resulted in Carpenter reading for Maya.
“Something about reading for Maya just came so naturally to me,” she said. “She’s definitely a force to be reckoned with, but I think that’s the great thing about her. She’s got so many layers. Just through these two seasons, I have learned so much about her and have gotten to do a lot of different things emotionally.”
Just as Cory and his friends were facing the often uncomfortable and awkward parts of growing up, Riley and her friends are learning how to navigate the world as young teens. From analyzing our reliance on technology to dealing with crushes, the depictions of average life experiences make the show relatable.
The show is moving to more mature topics this season, focusing on emotions and how teens learn to cope with and understand them, Carpenter said. The show is different from its predecessor, but the appeal is still there.
“We are lucky to have such a large fanbase,” Carpenter said. “It’s a family show that kids can enjoy, but old fans can, too. I’ve had adults come up to me, sometimes embarrassed, but they just really like the show.”