So I see there's a new gif set of Isabel's "apology" to Benji floating around and... yeah, I've been hardcore trying not to think too hard on this scene because it makes me kind of uncomfortable and angry, for several reasons.
1. the fact that her low bar going into this conversation is to be "unhorrible" to him. like... yikes. This is a grown woman patting herself on the back for being unhorrible to a 16/17 year old. And Armando going with that specific phrasing? Yeah, this rubbed me wrong.
2. It wasn't an apology. This was only an apology the way a grown up teaching a toddler how apologizes work is an apology. "I said sorry, so that means you forgive me." Like... they don't actually work that way. You are not entitled to a person's forgiveness just because you said you're sorry.
3. "I'm sorry if I'm the cause of the problems between you and Victor."
Honestly there's a lot to unpack here.
This isn't actually an apology for anything she did or said. This is the only sorry she said, and it was based solely on the relationship, not Benji's hurts. She already addressed Victor's hurts. She apologized TO HIM. She didn't do that with Benji. She reduced him to her son's relationship, even if it wasn't deliberately. She might have embraced the fact that Victor is in a relationship with this boy, but she hasn't wrapped her head around the fact that this boy is a person outside of that relationship with his own baggage.
4. That fact becomes really apparent when she glosses entirely over his statement that their problems were a lot bigger than just her, with the helpful little comment about relationships being effort no matter the age. (and the fact that we had to do the tired "woman jokingly pretends she's younger than she is" joke here is... sigh.) But there was no concern as to what those "bigger problems than a boyfriend's homophobic mother making things really difficult" could possibly entail. Because she has Victor's side of the story and right now, that's the whole story in her mind. Because Benji is not a person outside of her son's relationship yet.
5. The fact that she decided the conversation was over just like that. She said what she wanted to say and to her, that was all that was needed. This irritates me. No asking for forgiveness, no asking if they're on the road to learning to be okay with each other, no chance for him to say anything back. She wanted to be unhorrible to him, and she did that, and that's all she did.
6. Her parting words about not daring to use the microwave on her food after she literally threw the last batch in the garbage to keep him from sitting at her table to eat it is... wow. From an audience perspective, that's just not at all okay to me and really didn't end this scene on a good note.
Basically I'm concerned that they're going to completely wash this over and act like this conversation actually did anything besides ease Isabel's guilt and finally give Benji a tiny bit of visual proof that she might actually be trying with him. I hope not, but sometimes it feels like we've kind of accepted the "Isabel apologized and that magically makes all the hurt go away" narrative, when it really doesn't.
I really hope they spend some time allowing Benji to be a fully fleshed out character and actually having other characters seeing that.