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Raven's Home - The Baxters Bounce Back - Review: "Family of Five"

Welcome back, friends, to another exciting episode of Raven's Home. This week's episode is proudly sponsored by Chelsea Daniels' famous pancakes!

Just kidding. Nobody seems to be a huge fan of Chels's breakfast... or any of her cooking. Which is why Raven has secretly been giving out her own pancakes to the kids instead.

Onto the show!

Nia, Booker and Levi are in the kitchen and Booker breaks the dishwasher. He tries to fix it, and, well, this happens.

A for effort, though!

In the hallway of their apartment, Chelsea comes out of the bathroom to inform Raven that the toilet is broken. She suggests they call their landlord to have it repaired, and Raven makes a face that's all too familiar:

Raven sees Chelsea having a run-in with their landlord in their bathroom. She comes out of the vision and tries to gently explain to Chelsea that Mr. Jablonski, the landlord, doesn't know her and Levi moved in as only one family is allowed to live in the apartment. Chelsea agrees to keep the secret. But if Raven had the vision, we all know it's bound to come true - whether they do something, or nothing at all.

Back in the kitchen, the kids explain to Raven that the dishwasher is broken before she heads out to work (does Donna Cabonna have a Chicago office? Oh snap!). She insists that they DO NOT phone the landlord - which as the audience, we know why, but the kids don't.

Raven arrives at her office, and sadly, there's no sign of Ms. Cabonna. We do see this lady, though:

We find out she is Raven's boss ('she' as we're not given her name). Raven discovers she's been called in to work on a Saturday due to her client being unhappy with the look Raven designed.

Well, this wasn't exactly what I was expecting. If Raven's job involves designing clothing for animals, I don't think she did either. Although, I kinda sorta love it. Pet clothing is a growing industry, she's ahead of the times!

Boss Lady suggests they spell "Mitzy" on the back of Mitzy's pants, and when Raven disagrees with the idea she promptly tells her that it's happening. Now i'm imagining my cat prancing around the house with pants that say her name on them. What a world!

At the apartment, the kids decide to call Mr. Jablonski to fix the dishwasher. They put Levi on guard outside to see when Raven returns.

Levi is in the hall flying his drone, when Tess walks out of her apartment with a baseball bat and hits it into oblivion.

Or just into another room.

Mr. Jablonski is done fixing the dishwasher just as Raven returns home from work. Booker has the chain lock on their door so she can't get in, while Nia ushers Mr. Jablonski into the bathroom to take a look at their shower. When Raven finally gets in, her vision comes true. Chelsea and Mr. Jablonski are having a standoff in the bathroom.

Mr. Jablonski warns that their rent will be increased by $1000/month if Chelsea and Levi continue to live with the Baxters, and if they can't find the funds they'll have to move out. Chelsea is FREAKING out, suggesting she ask guards in an armoured truck nearby if they're hiring. Raven's not having Chelsea's insanity, and tells her she'll ask for a raise at work. She's about to ask for a raise from...

Something tells me this won't go well.

Meanwhile, Levi and Tess are standing in front of an apartment door, and Levi wants to look inside for his drone. Tess warns him against this, saying she thinks a witch lives inside. Levi doesn't back down and walks in...

Can we just take a moment to acknowledge THIS doll:

Seriously? A cat in a clown costume? How can something so adorable be SO FREAKY?! Raven's Home is really milking the "animals in apparel" thing.

Levi hears a noise, jumps and sees that Tess has come in. When she asks why Levi cares so much about getting the drone back, he explains that it's the last thing his father got for him before he went to jail. See - this is something I love and really appreciate about Raven's Home. They're touching on taboo topics like having an incarcerated parent. Although, kind of wondering how Chelsea ended up dating a criminal?! Actually, it wouldn't be the craziest thing she's ever done.

Yup, totally resurrecting "Do you carry a lunchbox?" to prove my point.

Tess agrees to help Levi find the drone, and as they're leaving see a woman sitting in a chair in the corner of the room. You guessed it, they screamed.

We're back at Raven's office, and oh, looks like we have a name for Boss Lady! Paisley. Raven notices Paisley isn't there, but Mitzy now has her name sewed on the gold pants. She decides to take the pants off of her to re-sew the lettering on... and rips the pants.

Paisley is opening the door and Raven quickly pulls a curtain around her and Mitzy. Paisley sees the ripped pants on the ground and gets her assistant to phone Raven. Raven's phone starts ringing, and Paisley pulls open the curtain.

Raven explains that she's fixing the pants, and then tries to ask for a raise - Paisley saying no, because she has to pay for her dog's upcoming nuptials. Nice. I do find Paisley's personality very funny, although flat.

At home, Nia tries to convince Booker to have a yard sale. Booker has a vision of Raven turning around and excitedly saying "you" saved the apartment. He's sold.

Booker sells a swearing robot as part of the sale, and Nia sells an Easy Make Baker. They realize they still don't have enough money.

Raven is still at work re-stitching the letters onto Mitzy's pants, and on the phone Chelsea reminds her that they can't give up. Once they end their call, an unexpected visitor arrives.

What does Chels have planned? I don't think it was this:

Yup. She tried to reason with Mr. Jablonski over some coffee she brewed, and, well, as we know Chelsea isn't... Gordon Ramsay... he spit it out. He also accused her of poisoning him, threatened to call the police, and then slipped on the spit out coffee.

Later, Raven returns home from work and Booker and Nia share that they tried to raise money through a yard sale. Raven is appreciative of their efforts. Levi walks in shortly after, and when putting his jacket into the coat closet sees this:

Looks like Chelsea came up with a great solution! Raven helps Mr. Jablonski, and Myrna, the 'witch' down the hall, comes to return Levi's drone. He and Tess spent some time with her, and the three became good friends. Myrna notices Mr. Jablonski, and it's revealed that she's his mother. Chelsea explains that she tried to make him coffee and he accused her of poisoning him, and Raven and the kids understand. They had a near poison experience with the pancakes that morning.

Once Mr. Jablonski is untied, he demands that everyone move out. Chelsea says not to blame the Baxters and that she and Levi will leave. Raven then says if Chelsea and Levi are leaving, so are they. Mr. Jablonski is happy about that, much to Raven's dismay.

Raven takes responsibility for not informing him that another family had moved in. Before the family (because they are one big family, blood or not) can prepare to pack, Levi apologizes to Myrna for not being able to attend their future planned Mahjong game. This is where Myrna steps in and convinces her son to let everyone stay. Well, forces him.

Of course Raven steps in too. After Mr. Jablonski and his mother leave, Booker's vision comes true. Except she wasn't praising him...

Booker hadn't accounted for Levi becoming friends with Myrna. The takeaway from all this? If you think someone may be a witch, you're probably wrong. Try getting to know them! They're likely just a doll collector.

Or a collector of what nightmares are made of.

This episode revealed a lot of vulnerability within the characters - Raven trying to get a raise to pay for their increased monthly bill, Chelsea preparing to move out with Levi if it meant Raven and her kids could stay, Levi talking about his father, and Booker and Nia doing what the could to avoid being evicted. These characters represent real people, and real situations. Major props to Disney (and Raven, who's an executive producer of the show), for not shying away from the realities of life with this show. We need more of this in children's television.

Also, did anyone think for a split second when Raven had her vision that Mr. Jablonski might be Vin Diesl? Come on. Don't tell me you can't see it.

... No? Just me? Ok. Never mind.

Let me know how you felt about the character development in this episode, Raven's unique career path and how much someone would have to pay you to try one of Chelsea's 'edible' concoctions below!

Catch Raven's Home Friday nights on Disney Channel.

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