Andor Episode 7 “Announcement” Spoilers Ahead
After the action-packed payoff of Episode 6’s “The Eye,” Andor Episode 7, “Announcement,” deals with the fallout from the Aldhani heist in a quieter hour. Though there’s less spectacle, this episode of Andor might be its most emotional to date. We see the shift in what’s driving these characters forward and the choices they’re making in order to take a stand, fall in line, or run away. The players have been rearranged and scattered on the board (across the galaxy) for a new game to be played. No one’s hands are clean from this episode, but the way Andor continues to create layers with its characters is why these franchises have an impact.
This may sound like a broken record at this point in Andor, but week-to-week the score by Nicholas Britell continues to elevate every scene. As great composers do, his music adds to the tension and unease of this spy thriller yet transports audiences into the galaxy far, far away that John Williams established back in 1977. In particular, the music from Niamos is this upbeat space pop jam that I’m ready to stream on repeat when it becomes available.
In an episode that catches viewers up to speed with what’s been happening on Ferrix since Cassian escaped, “Announcement” takes time to wrestle with the morality of the Rebellion. To Luthen Rael, the heist on Aldhani was a necessary action in order to keep the Rebellion alive; to Mon Mothma, it’s outside of morality to attack and steal in order to get what the cause needs; and to the Empire, it’s an act of terrorism that the Imperial Security Branch takes as seriously as a heart attack.
The Empire values order above all else; this is exemplified in Syril Karn and Dedra Meero. Yet, when faced with an attack like this, Dedra is quick to bend the rules to investigate the Rebellion patterns across the galaxy. To her, she’s the only one who sees what happened on Aldhani for what it stands for — an announcement that the Rebellion means business, hence where the Andor Episode 7 title comes from. In her efforts to do the right thing, Dedra makes herself a target among her peers, ready to take her down for impressing Major Partagaz and being rewarded for it. Something about Dedra Meero isn’t all that it seems, but only time will tell if these suspicions are proven false. Side note: congratulations to Syril Karn for landing his new desk job, giving him some space from his overbearing and condescending mother.
Not to hand out awards, but the episode’s MVPs are tied between Mon Mothma and Maarva Andor. These women carry the episode and the weight of the Rebellion on their backs in a way that’s awe-inspiring. For instance, Mon is always aware of the threat to her life at any given moment. In the middle of the pomp and circumstance of a party, she decisively lets her true colors shine to her old friend and Chandrillan banker, Tay Kolma.
Out of everyone, including her husband and daughter, she trusts him to be the key she needs in order to keep the Rebellion alive…through credits. Mon Mothma has nerves of steel to be able to let her mask down in the middle of the lion’s den. Genevieve O’Reilly commands her scenes with poise and precision, walking this line of covert affairs with grace in a way that deserves all the accolades.
Then you have Fiona Shaw’s Maarva Andor. If you’re like me and grew up knowing Fiona Shaw best from the Harry Potter franchise as Harry’s vicious Aunt Petunia, seeing her in Andor has been a surprise. However, it is in “Announcement” where Fiona Shaw shines when Cassian returns to Ferrix and tries to convince her to leave with him. Maarva tells her adopted son “no” in this beautiful and heartbreaking goodbye. Because of the attack on Aldhani, she feels like, for the first time in a while, she has hope in what the Rebellion is doing and wants to stand her ground. Unbeknownst to her, it’s because of Cassian that this hope has sparked anew. The way Shaw’s eyes well up as Cassian fails to understand the passion and cause she feels now is devastating.
Audiences are witnessing what could be the last time Cassian and Maarva ever see each other again. When Maarva encourages him to go off and find peace, Cassian tells her that he won’t have peace because he’ll be worried about her all the time. To which, Maarva replies simply, “That’s just love. Nothing you can do about that.” Shaw delivers this line with so much tenderness and simplicity that it’s breathtaking; it’s similar to the way Vision tells Wanda, “What is grief if not love persevering?” in WandaVision. This moment sums up the cost of Rebellion in a way that haunts you long after Andor Episode 7 ends.
Without Maarva or B2EMO, Cassian ends up in Niamos with a new name and a new side chick he has no problem stealing from. (I don’t know who to thank for Cassian Andor being shirtless in this episode, but thank you.) Even though he’s trying to keep his head low, trouble still finds him after a run-in with a Shoretrooper that won’t give him an inch. He barely gets any time on the beach planet before he’s sentenced to six years in an Imperial prison.
Cassian Andor is once again alone and on the run. As Skeen said in “The Eye,” he rebels against the universe as a means of survival. However, this path has failed to bring him peace time and time again. Now that he’s heading to prison, perhaps it’s time to pull out Nemik’s manifesto and let the spark he ignited in Maarva find a home in him. With more than half of the first season underway, Cassian is ready to make his next steps in taking up the Rebellion’s cause. He’s exactly what they need, even if he doesn’t know it for himself yet.
Now streaming on Disney Plus: What are your thoughts on Andor Episode 7 “Announcement” Let us know in the comments below.