In Season 4, Episode 21: Cult Fiction, Mr. Mack lures Shawn Hunter into his cult, The Centre, a facility for misguided youth. Initially, Mr. Mack is successful in brainwashing Shawn and convinces him to move into The Centre full-time.
However, later in the episode, Mr. Turner suffers a serious motorcycle accident. Although Mr. Mack accompanies Shawn to the hospital, Shawn ultimately renounces him and his cult following a bedside prayer to spare Turner’s life.
After Mr. Mack leaves the hospital, he is never seen or referenced again in Boy Meets World.
Who is Philip Mack?
Philip Mack, aka Mr. Mack, is a cult leader at The Centre. Like many cult leaders from the 90s, Mack targets young adults struggling to find an identity.
Despite only appearing in one episode (Season 4, Episode 21: Cult Fiction), Mr. Mack lives in infamy as one of the most famous Boy Meets World characters.
When Does Mr. Mack First Appear in Boy Meets World?
Mr. Mack first appears on-screen in Season 4, Episode 21: Cult Fiction. He is shown inside The Centre, where Sherri brings Shawn to “find himself.”
In his first scene, Mr. Mack comes across as mostly non-threatening. However, he alarms Shawn by repeating his name multiple times throughout their conversation.
Mr. Mack’s Cult Worshipers
We see several dozen students at The Centre during Cult Fiction. However, we only learn two members’ names because they recruit Shawn Hunter and Eric Matthews, respectively.
Of course, in Eric’s case, his interest in The Centre is disingenuous, and Mr. Mack prevents him from joining the cult.
Take a look at the known members of The Centre:
Alicia greets Eric at The Centre when he arrives with Cory to check on Shawn. Very little is revealed about her besides that she welcomes visitors, including Eric, with a hug.
Ultimately, Alicia is responsible for Eric’s interest in The Centre, though Mr. Mack quickly sniffs out his disingenuous motives.
Sherri’s The Centre membership pre-dates the episode, as she is the one who convinces Shawn to join the cult in the first place.
After overhearing Mr. Turner confront Shawn about his lack of college plans, Sherri twists Turner’s words to sound like judgments and hostile intentions. Shortly after Turner’s argument with Shawn, Sherri takes him to meet Philip Mack.
Shawn joins The Centre after his schoolmate, Sherri, overhears Mr. Turner criticizing Shawn for lacking direction. Mr. Mack convinces Shawn that such criticisms are judgments and only harm him as a person.
Initially, Shawn scoffs at the idea of living at The Centre full-time but quickly warms to the concept as he grows more disconnected from his previous support systems.
Mr. Mack’s Cult Principles
Philip Mack abides by several principles for The Centre. While his guidelines are typical of a cult-like atmosphere, the leader laughs at the notion that his youth center is a cult. Take a look at some of the central principles of Mr. Mack’s Centre.
- Fulfillment: One of the posters inside The Centre.
- Hugs: Mr. Mack greets each life member with a hug.
- Knowledge: Another one of the posters on the wall
- Names: Mr. Mack stresses his members’ names when talking to them (i.e., Hey Shawn, How are you doing, Shawn?)
- Non-judgment: Mack’s core principle is not judging others. Throughout his Boy Meets World appearance, the cult leader alludes to judgments several times.
- Non-laughter: Laughter is a mask that denies the reality of the situation and reveals nervousness
- Serenity: Another poster on the wall, inside
- Wisdom: Yet another poster on the wall
Mr. Mack’s Sayings
“The length of a journey has nothing to do with its ultimate value.”
“Laughter is a mask which denies the reality of the situation and reveals nervousness”
“Nobody judges who you are or where you come from; everyone here is the same.”
Mr. Mack Boy Meets World FAQ
Who Plays Mr. Mack in Boy Meets World?
Jerry Levine plays Mr. Mack in Boy Meets World. Levine is an actor and director who has appeared in TV series like Seinfeld and Will & Grace. Levine also had roles in films like Born on the Fourth of July and K-9.
When Did Mr. Mack Open The Centre?
We don’t know precisely when Philip Mack opened The Centre, but we know it was years before Shawn Hunter’s involvement. Mr. Feeny alludes to trying to shut it down for years.
Why Does Mr. Feeny Hate Mr. Mack?
Mr. Feeny hates Philip Mack because he thinks he preys on the souls of lost youth. George believes Mack’s motives are to manipulate formative minds for his nefarious agenda.
Additionally, Mack often targets Feeny’s students from John Adams High School. Mr. Feeny alludes to having previously attempted to shut down The Centre.
Why Didn’t Alan Matthews Kill Mr. Mack?
Alan threatens to kill Mr. Mack at the hospital, noting that he’s not one of Mack’s “gullible little kids.” However, Amy points out that Mack would love a lawsuit, at which point Alan opts not to kill the cult leader.
Of course, Alan wasn’t planning to murder Mr. Mack anyway but was motivated to discourage him from targeting Shawn Hunter.
Why Can’t Cory Go In The Celebrity Room?
After Cory drops by The Centre to investigate Shawn’s new cult, he asks Mr. Mack if he can go into a particular room with a star on the door. Of course, Philip Mack says no because it’s the celebrity room.
After processing his answer, Cory tells Shawn that Mr. Mack is the slickest guy he’s ever seen. The irony is that Mack’s Centre is all about inclusivity, but it demonstrates exclusivity by having a celebrity room.