In this latest episode of Andi Mack: we get a story that while finally providing some great back story on the Mack family, also provides a tale of how holding on to one point of view without thinking about how others may see you, can lead to negative circumstances. The main part of the episode focuses on Andi and Bex helping Celia clean out the house. However digging through mementos of the past, causes memories of the past to fully resurface; most notably: memories of what led to Bex leaving Andi with Celia many years ago. The thing is though: both Bex and Celia seem to remember these events differently. Bex recalls Celia being extremely critical of every mistake Bex was being, while Celia remembers Bex being very irresponsible. The thing is though: despite these flashbacks seemingly being in conflict with each other, they actually do fit together.
There's been more than enough evidence in the series thus far to say that Bex does have a history with being irresponsible and not making the best choices. Thus, all of Bex's many irresponsible choices (most notably becoming pregnant with Andi before she was ready) would cause Celia to become very critical of her. This is especially true when you come to realize that for Celia: witnessing Bex making so many mistakes would undoubtedly cause her to question where she went wrong as a mother, and all that frustration would cause her to be more harsh in her interactions with Bex. So while the flashbacks Bex and Celia do have in this episode might have been skewed a bit, it's equally valid that both flashbacks did happen exactly as both remember them (but at different times).
However this does lead to a flashback moment that both Bex and Celia both seem to agree did indeed happen when Andi was just a few months old. When both Bex and Celia have an argument that goes on for over half an hour, it causes them both to forget where they had left Andi. And this causes both individuals, but perhaps more-so Bex to realize: that the two fighting constantly will only lead to Andi eventually getting hurt. And that's when Bex left. It was one major event, but it was viewed in two different ways. To Celia: this was Bex just being irresponsible again. But for Bex: this was a sacrifice. For Bex: she wanted to spare Andi the experience of being raised by both a mother who wasn't completely ready to be one, along with the experience of being raised by a mother who would be constantly told by her own mother that she was truly not up to the task. And seeing Andi actually say her first word: mama to Celia (and not her), just causes Bex who already feels completely irresponsible, feel driven away to leave Andi with the woman who seems more fit to be her mother.
And this is something that can realistically happen in our current culture today. Too often many people, even those with the best intentions, can become so obsessed with just their point of view that they fail to try to take others' points of views. And this isn't an issue of what is right or wrong. It's the issue of just taking a moment to think about how another person may be viewing you or the same situation you're witnessing, can greatly impact how you then interact with that person. In this story, we now realize that Celia simply had the intention to help give Bex and Andi a better life. But Celia's inability to see how Bex perceived her, caused her to unintentionally come across as rude and critical to Bex. And while Bex was indeed irresponsible during her teenage years, she still had every intention to try to be a good mother to Andi. But Bex's inability to try to see how Celia perceived her, caused her to feel disconnected from her own mother and feel driven to leave.
And this leads to the importance of communication. And not just shouting out your inner thoughts at people, but real communication. When you talk.... but also listen, and then reflect on what others have said and how they interacted with you. Another great example of this is in the side plot of the episode with Buffy playing cards with her elderly neighbor. Buffy's neighbor (like her) is obsessed with winning. But when Buffy realizes that her neighbor's obsession with winning caused her friends and family to not want to be around her anymore, it causes Buffy to finally reflect on what others have said about her in the past, and how they interacted. Which leads Buffy for the first time in her life walking away from a game, not caring if she won or not. Despite this episode of Andi Mack feeling quite short and not giving viewers as much flashback material as they may have wanted on the Mack family, it does still present great character drama and a great life lesson. For so long, Bex and Celia kept shouting their thoughts at the other without really listening to one another. But now that they are finally hearing the other out, hopefully the two will finally be able to help each other more and grow in the future. And if you yourself are experiencing some sort of crisis, or helping some one else experiencing some sort of crisis, don't forget that communication.... is key.
-The episode previous to this is "Friends Like These". The following episode is "The Snorpian".
-This episode is the first to feature flashbacks during the time when Andi was a baby. Aside from Andi, all of the actors played their younger selves with wigs and make up.
-The video version of this review is available here.