Considering the surprise party disaster was caused by Ben and was the climax of the previous episode, as well as the fact that Ben’s actions at the end of this episode lead to a surprising domino effect and twist ending, it’s only fitting that he is the narrator of this episode, the penultimate one of the season.
The episode kicks off with Rebecca calling Ben asking him to pick Mia up from camp as she is apparently sick and Rebecca is stuck in Sydney for work. Ben picks her up and decides to cook dinner for everyone to tell them that Mia will be staying over. At the dinner, tensions are high, with Ainsley ignoring Heather’s messages and Harry announcing to everyone that he is moving out to care for Manju. Things get even worse when Liz tells Heather that the latter is planning on leaving to travel, and then to top it all off, Mia throws up on Ben.
Mia’s vomiting leads to a chain reaction of Ainsley, Harry and Ben also getting sick, with Harry quickly deducing that Ben’s paella is the cause. Liz goes over to Manju’s to help her, however when she arrives, she is also struck down with food poisoning.
Mia eventually reveals to Ben that she wasn’t sick at camp, her “friends” locked her out of her cabin for a couple of hours during the night and laughed at her, and she has been bullied at school as well for quite some time. When he tells the gang this, they reveal that they were also bullied during their teen years, however Harry reveals Liz was bullied horrendously, which surprises Ben. When Harry calls Liz for her advice on the situation, it’s revealed how sick she is as Manju is looking after her. Ben also asks the housemates for advice on what to tell Mia, both about how to handle the bullying and about his experiences in jail, as Mia has figured out that’s where he was.
Meanwhile Lachlan comes to the house after Ainsley texts him with “supplies” (Immodium, Gastrolyte, disposable wipes) and it’s revealed Ainsley has spending nights with Lachlan since the surprise party disaster.
The next morning, Manju gives Liz a sari to wear to go home in and Liz tries to get Manju to accept Harry to no avail. Edwina also calls Liz asking to meet up with her, and Lachlan comes into the kitchen, revealing he spent the night. He also asks to replace Heather in the house when she leaves to go travelling. Heather doesn’t like this idea, to the point where she says she’ll cancel her trip. After a brief argument, Liz suggests they think about it and at 5pm, they all give their answer–yes or no–on the gang’s message thread. Rebecca also comes to pick Mia up, angry that Ben told Mia about his time in jail and says that he can’t see her until his life is more stable.
Meanwhile, Edwina tells Liz she wanted to meet up with her as she is also getting divorced and asks Liz to keep her tryst with The Fridge at the housewarming party a secret. Liz agrees and uses Edwina’s request as an opportunity to blackmail her into getting her job back and representing her in the divorce.
The episode ends with Ben telling the group he is neither a yes nor a no for Lachlan but he thinks they should sell altogether ASAP. He reveals in his narration that everyone (except Liz) agreed within minutes, but her opinion wasn’t relevant due to the fact that she technically doesn’t get a say as she is bankrupt. However what he doesn’t know is that Edwina has hired her, which would mean she could build up her savings to reinvest.
The final minutes of the episode involve Harry revealing to everyone that the food poisoning was caused by the prawns in the paella, and Ainsley revealing to Harry that she has been feeling queasy all week. He tells her to follow it up with her GP unless she’s pregnant. She laughs this idea off initially and then realises she could be, which she reveals to Harry via her facial expression. His facial expression also changes when he realises what she’s thinking.
Overall this was another solid episode, with comedic moments provided throughout with the food poisoning episode, character development with the Mia subplot, and a twist ending which is the perfect spring board for the season finale.
-According to Ben, the gang have been living together for four months.
-According to Harry, Manju has gone through three stages of coping with his sexuality:
Stage 1: Developed a plan (i.e. marriage of convenience)
Stage 2: Rewriting history (i.e. his outing caused her stroke)
Stage 3: Cries alone
-Harry informs Manju that her stroke was in fact three weeks before Ben outed him not after.
-When Mia is sick, he goes to grab Ainsley’s slow cooker instead of a bucket.
-The order of everyone coming down with food poisoning:
-Heather doesn’t get sick, I’m guessing due to her years as simultaneously a mother and a nursing home carer.
-The traumatised look on Liz’s face when Harry relieves himself in the laundry sink where she’s soaking her white dresses, and her walk through the house with the garbage bag filled with the soiled dresses moments later was hilarious.
-Harry can’t afford home care for Manju as he is bailing Liz out.
-Mia’s excitement over doing a poo sample and her subsequent disappointment over not being able to do it as Rebecca picked her up was hilarious.
-According to Heather when she was 15, she played “Spin the Bottle” at a sleepover, even though the bottle stopped at her several times, no boy would kiss her due to her big nose. She says she was 15 in 1984, which would make her birth year 1969–consistent with the fact that she celebrated her 50th birthday in the previous episode.
Best one liners and interactions:
- “I focused on the things I loved…books, rom coms, sugar.” (Ainsley to Ben on how she coped with being bullied in school)
- “You didn’t step away, you were expelled!” (Heather to Lachlan on the circumstances of him leaving the house)