Brandon and Andrea meet at The Blaze, which becomes the scene of many heated debates between the two of moral issues concerning the paper, always underpinned by their mutual, undeniable attraction which neither ever find the right time to truly act on. While Andrea is first considered a social outcast and Brandon quickly befriends 'in-crowd' people such as rich boy Steve Sanders and revered, rich loner Dylan McKay, the focus early on is how Andrea has an obvious crush on Brandon, but it goes both ways.
Brandon is the first to spontaneously kiss Andrea and both are incredibly jealous of their respective significant others. The pairing seems to be bandied about quite a bit, with a bunch of near-misses in them finally getting together. It is not stated, but one can speculate that the two never did get together due to the necessity of the pregnancy storyline, and possibly Carteris's departure from the show a year later.
Andrea and Brandon first meet when Brandon seeks out a place on the West Beverly Blaze and encounters Andrea – the intense, dismissive editor-in-chief. Brandon's persistence and well-intentioned demeanor picks apart Andrea's defenses and she agrees to let him work on the Blaze. When Brandon discovers Andrea living out of district, the two start a friendship as Andrea allows herself for the very first time, to put faith and stock in a peer from her high school, which is more or less a job to her. This begins a transformation in Andrea, as she starts opening up a bit to people and develop friendships at West Beverly.
Brandon and Andrea's friendship is intense from the very beginning, and only grows. Andrea becomes angry with Brandon during his fling with Marianne Moore, which could come off as jealousy – except it's hugely informed by Andrea's lack of friendships and vulnerability to others at West Beverly. As she says to him, she thought he was different. She has a similar reaction when Brandon considers cheating on a test, prompting his equally impassioned response to her that he feels she's so invested in his morality, like they're in a relationship.
While Andrea is aware of her growing feelings for Brandon, he is somewhat ignorant to his, but often expresses those feelings when emotionally vulnerable. When Brenda decides to throw a party, with their parents away for the weekend, Brandon invites Andrea, gets tipsy and promptly kisses her, leaving Andrea mortified as she feels it's insincere, and Brandon's beer-fueled reaction to her rejection is heavy remorse, indicating that this was him daring to express his true feelings.
They continue to work together and be close, with Andrea jealous of the girls Brandon dates. Once the Spring Dance comes around, Brenda assumes Brandon will ask Andrea, but before she can hint at anything he says he's not going. Kelly then asks Brandon, although Brandon's not interested in her. When Andrea decides to show up anyway, Brandon (who continually remarks that he hates dancing) asks Andrea to dance and they slow dance.
- Andrea – Brandon, do you think I'm a geek for coming to this dance by myself?
- Brandon – No not at all. We never get to slow dance in the newsroom
- ―Cutie pies