When school started, Miranda felt awkward every time she saw Via. She knew that Via didn't like her new look or her new friends, so she and Ella badmouthed Via. Miranda knows that she and Ella changed and Via didn't, but it was easier to pretend that Via had done something wrong. Miranda noticed Justin about halfway through the school year and then noticed he was dating Via. She wasn't sure why she was surprised given how pretty Via is. Miranda explains that she has a boyfriend too, but he kind of made fun of her when she signed up for theater.
Miranda's discomfort proves that she's not entirely happy with her new look. The fact that she sticks with it, however, suggests that she does value the popularity that her new look affords her, even if it does deprive her of close and supportive friendships. The way that she talks about her boyfriend suggests too that he's more of a for-show boyfriend to signal her popularity than a real, intimate romantic partner.
Miranda decided to sign up for theater when she saw Via's name on the sign-up sheet, though she and Via avoided each other. One day, Mr. Davenport asked Miranda to copy the spring play, The Elephant Man. Miranda flipped through it while she made copies and discovered it was about a terribly deformed man. She told Mr. Davenport that they couldn't do it because of her little brother's deformed face. He finally switched to Our Town, and Miranda was surprised to land the leading role.
Though Miranda's methods are questionable, it's commendable that she confronts Mr. Davenport about his original choice of a play in the name of standing up for August. This shows that she still cares deeply for August, even if she doesn't see him at all anymore, and she wants him to feel safe and supported as much as he can be in public.