Dance Moms started its "Throwback Tuesday" special episodes the right way by showing off its most-famed dancer Maddie Ziegler. With her mom Melissa, Maddie watched old clips of Dance Moms episodes and talked about her experiences on and off the show in the special episode "Throwback Tuesday: Maddie & Melissa." Melissa and Maddie seem to have a pretty healthy relationship despite being involved in the insanity of Dance Moms and Maddie has managed to stay levelheaded throughout her rise to stardom.
Of course, Maddie has a healthy dose of confidence since she's a 12-year-old superstar. This confidence, as displayed during her "Throwback Tuesday" episode, could perhaps be best described as "swagger." Maddie knows she's a talented dancer and strives for perfection — and I have to admire her for that. The throwback episode started with showing clips of eight-year-old Maddie and her sister Mackenzie in Season 1 of Dance Moms. Maddie's initial takeaway was "I was adorable" followed with "Mackenzie was adorable" after a slight scolding from her mom. (Whatever, it's cool. They both were adorable.)
As she watched herself age four years on Dance Moms, Maddie discussed how it was difficult always being Abby Lee Miller's favorite dancer and how Abby often treated her like an adult when she shouldn't have. The fact that Maddie is aware that she's not an adult and shouldn't be treated as such shows how mature Maddie is for her age. Mature and talented? Maddie's got it going on.
But Maddie is still only 12 years old, so she does act her age at times. She shared stories about being embarrassed by her mom, like when Melissa was trying to dance in their bathroom. And even though she said she was cool with it, Maddie is still clearly kind of upset that her younger sister Mackenzie beat her in a competition during Season 5. (Or at least she was at the time of the competition.) Yet all of that is understandable since could you imagine being followed by a TV crew while you grew up with your sibling? Let alone in a competitive setting? Things wouldn't always be pretty.
The most upsetting moment of the special episode was seeing how devastated Maddie was at the thought that she would disappoint Abby when she messed up in competitions. (One old Dance Moms clip showed her having a meltdown while saying "Abby's going to hate me.") But one thing that gave me more hope for Maddie's future is how supportive her mother is of her career. After the controversy of Sia's music video for "Elastic Heart" that featured Maddie and Shia LaBeouf, Melissa stood by the art that her daughter had created with the eccentric musician and actor — just as she should have. With the support for her mother and Abby Lee, Maddie's career will continue to grow in Dance Moms and beyond. And though Maddie knows she's the most famous 12-year-old around, she'll hopefully keep her humbleness — and swagger — in check.