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Five Bedrooms–Season 1 Finale (One Bid)

The job of a season finale is to tie up the season’s story arcs and loose ends, and set up story arcs for the next season (if there is one). I feel that this finale did a good, but not great job.

I will be reviewing this episode character by character.

Ainsley and Lachlan—As Ainsley realised that she might be pregnant in the final minutes of the previous episode, and the fact that she narrated the pilot, it was only natural that she would narrate the finale and that the episode’s focus would start on them.

The episode kicks off with Ainsley telling Lachlan she’s pregnant, revealing that since the previous episode, she took multiple home pregnancy tests and went to her doctor to confirm the pregnancy. Lachlan’s at the house as he is the agent for the sale, and at first he seems mad, however it turns out he’s apparently happy about it.

Ainsley eventually tells the housemates that she’s pregnant, and Lachlan leaves, ignoring Ainsley’s messages. When he eventually comes back, he reveals that Mel is also pregnant. This reveal honestly wasn’t that surprising as it was typical to Lachlan’s character and Ainsley was never going to get her happily ever after with him.

After Ainsley tells Heather about Lachlan also impregnating Mel, Lachlan is confronted by the housemates for his behaviour. The final nail in the “Lachlan is an arsehole” coffin comes when Lachlan feels threatened by Ben and shields himself behind Ainsley.

Afterwards, Ainsley finally stands up to Lachlan, telling him that she is keeping the baby but she can’t have him in her life as she needs to be surrounded by people that love her and that she can rely on. I was happy to see Ainsley finally stand up for herself and I’m looking forward to seeing her on the journey to motherhood next season (if there is another season).

Heather—The Heather subplot kicks off with her having dinner at the house with Col, Rhonda and the boys to inform them that she is leaving to go overseas and has considered Iceland due to its remote location. She unsurprisingly changes her mind, or rather, admits to Ainsley when the latter calls her out, that she was never getting on the plane to leave. When Lachlan attempts to deflect the housemates’ anger towards him back onto them, specifically having a go at her for the way she is apparently treating Ainsley, Ben stands up for her and she in turns stands up for him and finally admits she adores him.

When Ainsley calls Heather out on her behaviour, she admits that she wouldn’t miss Ainsley’s journey to motherhood for the world.

Overall, I enjoyed that Heather finally made up with Ainsley and Ben. If there is a season two, I’m looking forward to seeing Heather assist Ainsley on her journey to motherhood, and her and Ben finally enter into a relationship.

Ben—In all honesty, other than standing up for Heather and making up with her, not that much was going on with Ben.

Liz—Liz spends most of the episode in hot water with the gang after Edwina tells them how Liz described the situation they are in as a “debacle”. When she tells Edwina that the “commune” is being sold, Edwina offers Liz her house to live in while her divorce proceedings are underway. Liz calls Harry to describe the house to him and tempt him to move in as it will mean he would be able to afford care for Manju as they would live there rent free.

When the others find out about it and discuss it at the auction, Liz is in even more trouble, however she reveals that despite its perks, she hated it as none of the gang were there with her.

Overall not that much was going on with Liz, but I felt that the revelation of her hating a fancy house, the kind that she would normally like, because none of the gang were there, proved how much progression her character made over the season.

Harry—This episode shows Harry living with Manju and how much of a strain it has been on their relationship, especially the way that Manju has been treating him, as well as his struggle to balance looking after Manju with his heavy workload and the impending auction. After Liz calls him to tell him about Edwina’s house and that living there could help him rekindle his romance with Pete, he calls Pete asking to see him. He meets him at a restaurant, declaring his feelings for him, only to find out Pete now has a new boyfriend.

The strongest point of Harry’s subplot and the finale was Manju finally coming around to accepting Harry for who he is. Manju asks for Marty for information on Pete, before getting Pete to come over under the ruse of security at the house. She then calls Harry and tells him and Pete that his paternal grandfather was also gay and that she wants him to be happy. Overall while I appreciated that Manju finally came around, I felt that this happened too quickly, nevertheless Manju’s words were hilarious.

Overall I enjoyed Harry’s subplot as it provided surprising comic relief. I also felt that Harry got his happily ever after, just not the one he wanted or expected—while he didn’t get the guy he loved, he is out and his mother has finally accepted him.

 

The episode ended with the housemates agreeing to stay together whilst the auction is underway. By the time they’ve finally finished spilling their guts and revealing how much they love each other, the house has been sold. This didn’t surprise me and it actually frustrated me a little, as I kept thinking “stop talking and go out and stop the auction!”

Overall I felt that the finale did it’s job, however it was predictable. I could see Lachlan revealing he also impregnated his now ex-wife and the house being sold from a mile away. That being said, I’ve enjoyed watching Five Bedrooms and I hope it’s renewed for another season.

 

 

Stray Observations:

-Lachlan’s last name is Best.

-Ainsley deliberately picked the bedroom by the front door.

-The grey haired woman at the auction was also at the auction in the pilot.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “May I ask?” “Romantic complications mostly.” “I want to find a better place for my daughter.” “And romantic complications.” (Marty-Simmo-Ben-Simmo on why Ben is leaving the house)
  • “You hate flying how are you going to get there?” “I’ll be heavily sedated and probably have to be stretchered off at the other end.” (Col-Heather on the latter’s plans to move to Iceland)
  • “The last time you entered this kitchen, everyone ended up shitting themselves literally!” (Heather to Ben)
  • “I’m pregnant!” “To the dipshit?” (Ainsley-Heather)
  • “Could you hold on for a minute while I body slam your luxury linen?” (Liz on the phone to Harry on one of the beds in Edwina’s house)
  • “Can I give you a little something to calm your nerves?” “What are we talking about? Liquid? Plant?” “How strong do you want to go?” (Val-Heather-Val while the auction is underway)
  • “As long as you’re healthy and don’t wear the hot pants, I will welcome you into the family.” (Manju to Pete)
  • “Marty and mum have moved on from Pete and are workshopping my love life!” (Harry to the gang)

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 7 (Four Meats)

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.

 

Stray Observations:

-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:

  1. Mia
  2. Ainsley
  3. Harry
  4. Ben
  5. Liz

-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)

 

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 6 (Fifty Years)

Now that all of the main characters have narrated at least one episode, I wondered whether the writers would continue with a rotating narrator, and if so, who they would go with? Would they keep the same rotation and start all over again with Ainsley? The answer to my two questions was yes and no. Yes, the rotating narrator would continue, but no it would not be Ainsley, it would be Heather.

This episode focused on Heather’s feelings around turning 50. She starts her day waking up to the sound of Ben singing outside, believing that he is singing away his broken heart over her “breaking up” with him. She then gets a call from Col wishing her a happy birthday, only for her to quickly remind him her birthday is in fact the next day and that she would be spending the last day of her forties assessing Manju’s home suitability for her wheelchair and interviewing receptionists for the nursing home she works for. Heather then goes downstairs and finds herself bombarded with a birthday song and dance from Ainsley and Harry, and a birthday cake with 50 lit candles on it before going to work.

At work, Heather’s colleague, Rhonda, informs Heather that she is dating Col after coming across him on a dating app. Whilst they are discussing it, Liz reveals her presence as she is there for a job interview for the relief receptionist. Heather at first refuses to hire her, however when Liz admits she’s overqualified but needs the money, Heather changes her mind. Later, Heather and Col have a minor tiff about the fact he’s dating Rhonda, and Col asks Heather to talk to her about it. After Heather is surprised with more birthday cake at work, she encourages Rhonda to pursue a relationship with Col.

Whilst Heather is going about her day, Ainsley is putting together a surprise birthday party for her, which includes inviting Col and Rhonda, Pete, and Manju. Whilst everyone is gathered by the front door waiting for Heather to arrive home, Heather and Liz are talking in the front yard about Heather’s inability to follow her dreams and do what she wants. Heather reveals loud enough for everyone to hear that she was doing what she wants by having sex with Ben. When she opens the door everyone yells “surprise!” with Col and Ainsley giving Heather looks making it clear they have heard everything.

While Col angrily calls out Heather for keeping the affair a secret, an upset Heather is trying to apologise to Ainsley, who is hiding in her bedroom. After Col accuses Heather of investing in the house because of Ben, Ben steps into defend her, only to admit his love for her and accidentally outs Harry to his mother in the process. Ainsley and Col eventually leave, the latter after Heather somewhat apologises, reminds Col that their marriage hadn’t been great for years, and encourages him to go after Rhonda. Ben and Liz go up to the loft to give Heather pizza and a birthday gift in the form of noise cancelling headphones, whilst Ben reveals to Heather that his birthday gift to her is a zen garden, which is the reason behind his digging up of the backyard over the previous day. Heather tearfully admits to Ben that she does have feelings for him but is scared of them, and needs to figure out what she wants for herself and who she is before she can date anyone.

Meanwhile, Harry is trying to assist Manju in her recovery, which hits a roadblock when Heather tells Harry that her home isn’t suitable for her needs and Manju refuses to go into care, and when Ben outs Harry to her.

The episode ends with Ainsley hiding out at her office after the surprise party disaster, calling Lachlan and kissing him.

Overall I felt this was a solid episode as Heather and Liz’s similar personalities and dynamic were explored, and now Ben and Heather’s affair, and Harry’s sexuality was brought out into the open. With the affair and Harry’s sexuality out in the open, opportunities for new subplots have presented themselves.

I’m looking forward to seeing what the fallout of the surprise party disaster and its affects on the gang will be in the next episode.

 

Stray Observations:

-The nursing home Heather and Liz work at is Dawes Court Aged Care.

-Liz is capable of doing yoga in the backyard whilst Ben is digging it up.

-Heather hates flying.

 

Best one liner:

  • “Have you thought about pouring your feelings into sex and alcohol like a normal person?” (Heather to Ben)

 

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 5 (Five Lies)

As everyone else has told their story, so to speak, it didn’t surprise me that this episode switched the narrator to Harry and focused on him.

This episode mainly focuses on Harry’s tug of war between wanting to be with Pete and coming out to his mother. Harry and Pete manage to have a great second date and hook up, with the housemates eager to get to know Pete the next morning. However their plans are derailed when Harry’s mother, Manju, shows up unexpectedly with food. Manju meets Pete and doesn’t suspect anything due to Harry, Pete and the housemates barely managing to feed her a bunch of lies.

After Pete makes a hasty exit, clearly upset with Harry over lying to him about coming out to his mother, Harry goes over to his house to explain. Pete makes it clear that he can’t date someone who is in the closet as he has had this experience with another man and it ended badly. Harry then tells him he is going to come out to his mother, Pete is sceptical, however Harry tries to go through with it twice, however he fails, interestingly, due to circumstances beyond his control.

The first time he fails as Manju has secretly set him up with an Indian girl by the name of Prisha. After watching the cricket together, Harry and Prisha go out to a cafe together where he tells her he’s gay, which she accepts, however she warns him that telling his mother will be difficult. The second time he tries to tell her is much more tragic as he walks into her house to discover her lying on the floor, discovering that she has had a stroke. Liz stays with him, while Ben and Heather clean up Manju’s house. Liz tries to convince Harry to call Pete, however Harry refuses as he is not ready to come out to Manju and any man who is with him needs to be okay with this. The episode ends with Harry promising Manju that he is not going anywhere.

Meanwhile, Ainsley finally reveals her feelings to Ben, only for him to attempt to let her down gently by telling her he is seeing someone (but of course he doesn’t reveal he’s seeing Heather). I found this moment to be incredibly heartbreaking as Ainsley is hurt and Ben is desperate not to hurt her. I found Ben begging Ainsley to continue talking to him and telling her she could do better than him to be an interesting contrast to Lachlan’s lack of respect for her, even more so as Lachlan and Mel make an appearance in this episode. While my heart broke for Ainsley, I appreciated her character development which was proven by the fact that she finally plucked up the courage to tell Ben how she felt and that she stood up to Lachlan and didn’t give into him when he told her he has feelings for her (apparently).

After Ainsley reveals her feelings to Ben, she turns to Heather for comfort and support, of course not knowing about Ben and Heather’s affair. Just as Heather was embracing her affair with Ben, after Ainsley tells her she has feelings for Ben, Heather breaks off the affair, inadvertently hurting Ben, when she reveals she wasn’t looking for anything long-term. Ben’s reaction clearly shows he had feelings for Heather and wanted more, which meant that the shoe was on the other foot.

Overall I enjoyed this subplot as Ainsley finally revealed her feelings for Ben and the affair between Ben and Heather ended. It will be interesting to see where this subplot goes now, the only loose end is the fact that Ainsley is still unaware that Heather is the woman Ben was seeing, which I’m sure will eventually come out in the open.

There wasn’t much of a focus on Liz in this episode, however she stilled played a crucial role. Liz and Harry’s friendship was a strong focus, with her giving advice to Harry on what outfit he should wear on his date, offering to be wherever Harry needed her to be when he told her he was going to come out to Manju, and she quickly arrived at the hospital after Manju had her stroke. She also became the first housemate to discover Ben and Heather’s affair when Heather jumped out of Ben’s bedroom window to avoid Ainsley, and landed in front of Liz, who was working out in the garage. Liz managed to play her crucial role whilst job hunting throughout the episode. I enjoyed seeing Liz being there for Harry and her facial expressions as the housemates tried to explain themselves to her were hilarious.

Overall this was a strong episode with a great amount of character development and realistic dramas.

 

Stray Observations:

-Pete’s brother is also gay.

-With this episode, all five main characters have narrated at least one episode.

-Heather somehow knows how long the spin cycle on the washing machine lasts.

-According to Ben, he has a visit with Mia coming up.

-Ben’s bedroom is next to the garage, or at least the closest one to it.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “If the goal is to give the man retina damage, you’ve nailed it!” (Liz to Harry on date outfit #1)
  • “You look like a waiter, an undertaker…a waiter at a funeral.” (Liz to Harry on date outfit #2)
  • “That’s the thing about an honesty policy, it only takes a ten percent half-truth and then you’re a total liar.” (Harry narrating)
  • “I didn’t realise your identity was attached to cleaning.” (Ainsley to Heather on cleaning duty)
  • “I’m starting to wonder if you’re only in this for the ride share benefits.” (Harry to Pete)
  • “He hasn’t played in a while you must update your choice.” (Manju to Pete when says Sachin Tendulkar is his favourite Indian cricket player to cover the fact that he and Harry are dating)
  • “At least as a meteorologist you’d be prepared for the cold.” (Harry to Prisha on her job)

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 4 (Zero Dollars)

In this episode, the narrator is switched to Liz and focuses on her life, or rather the fact that it is spiralling out of control.

Liz talks about her life in her old, predictably large house, and then compares it to life in the house with the others. When she comes home from work, Harry tells her they’ve been robbed and the gang bombards her with questions about her television as it was stolen. However she refuses to help as she is on her way to an important appointment. This appointment is revealed to be with a State Trustee, who informs her that she has been declared bankrupt. He tells her that her car and the house may be sold.

While Liz is out, the others talk to Pete Portelli, a police officer who is also their neighbour down the street. When Ben sees the sparks between Harry and Pete, he leaves the room, followed by Heather, and Ben rings Ainsley to get her out of the room.

When Heather and Ben go to inform their neighbours about the robbery, this leads to a neighbourhood watch meeting being held. When Liz comes home and discovers the meeting taking place, she admits to “relocating the television”. While Liz doesn’t admit to her bankruptcy, it is clear to the housemates she is having some kind of financial trouble and Harry offers to give her loan, only for Liz to angrily refuse.

Liz goes back to work to inform Edwina about her bankruptcy, which shocks her, and she tells her she’ll have to discuss it with the other senior partners. She then meets with the Trustee at the house, when Ainsley sees the Trustee take photos of the house and overhears their conversation, she alerts Harry, which leads to the truth coming out. She leaves, against Harry’s advice and warning that the others may kick her out for not informing them of her bankruptcy, but she leaves to go back to work, only to discover the senior partners have decided to fire her. When she returns to her office to pack up, Ainsley calls her to ask her, on behalf of the others, to move out. This sends her over the edge.

Liz steals a bottle of wine from the office, drives to her old home, and sits in a swing set in the backyard and starts drinking. Naturally, the others grow concerned, with Ainsley and Ben going out to look for her. They arrive at Liz’s old house, moments before police arrive as the homeowners reported Liz’s presence in their backyard. Ainsley and Ben take Liz home, they all apologise to each other, Harry buys Liz out, and the others tell Liz she’s not going anywhere.

Meanwhile, after Liz admits to relocating her television, Harry goes to the police station to tell Pete the truth and Pete asks Harry out. On their date, Harry is distracted by the Liz drama, however his date ends on a good note with him kissing Pete. Overall I enjoyed this subplot as it explored Harry’s sexuality in a tasteful, realistic and humorous way.

Speaking of sexuality, Ben and Heather’s apparent chemistry is explored further when they try to hook up at a motel room, due to Heather’s “rules”. Col calls her just as her and Ben are getting underway, I thought this would lead to a cliche moment of Heather becoming confused over her past feelings for Col, however it only makes Heather determined to hook up with Ben, which I was happy to see as it avoids the cliche. Overall, I still feel that there isn’t much chemistry between them, but I am interested to see how their relationship, if you will, evolves over time.

Overall this was a solid episode, especially as the gang’s friendship was seriously tested and they made it through.

 

Stray Observations:

-Pete lives at number 58 in the street.

-Heather’s rules for having sex with someone: it has to be at least 20.4km away from anyone she has ever met, the person has to be drunk (and drunker than her).

-Heather hasn’t been able to sneeze with any confidence in over a decade.

-Liz was an associate at her law firm.

-Liz’s surname is Wendell.

-Pete has been living in the same street as the gang for four years, and he owns his house.

-In an attempt to follow Heather’s rules, Ben buys optional disguises consisting of blue, comically oversized sunglasses, a Thirst Aid drinking hat, and bottles of Melbourne Bitter.

-Harry suggests to Liz that they add another “alarm” to their friendship, a “Harry I’m struggling and I need your help” alarm.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “Walking in is like going through a tough mudder course.” (Liz on the house)
  • “Wait two hours, call him and ask him out for a refreshing beverage.” (Ben giving Harry a dating strategy to asking Pete out)
  • “Which part of ‘take this to our graves’ did you not understand!?” (Heather to Ben on their kiss)
  • “I was on the phone with the insurance company for three hours giving myself an early Alzheimer’s detection test!” (Heather to Liz when Liz reveals she relocated her television)
  • “No-one is seeing me naked again under any circumstances!” (Heather to Ben)
  • “Is that your arm?” “No, but thank you for the compliment.” (Heather-Ben when they are in bed)
  • “That was a rough patch wasn’t it? You were so angry.” (Col to Heather on her gluten free phase)
  • “Some of the best, let’s call them ‘romantic encounters’ I’ve ever had have been when I’ve gone in incredibly angry.” (Heather to Harry)
  • “This is a house of utter humiliation!” (Heather to Liz)
  • “To your knowledge, is Liz engaged in a flirtation with her financial person?” (Ainsley to Harry when she sees the State Trustee taking photos of the house and later overhears their conversation in Liz’s bedroom)

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 3 (Three Millimetres)

As I predicted in my review of the previous episode, this episode switches the narrator to Ben and focuses on him.

The gang have been living in the house together for a couple of months now and Ben’s behaviour—specifically his apparently slow pace of getting the house painting finished, sending his tradie mates to Harry for skin checks, and his “nudie strolls” are bothering the others, especially Liz. Ben is completely oblivious to this and thinks his life is “finally on track.” While this can be excused as him thinking his life is good, when his secrets come out later in the episode, his words take on a whole new meaning.

Heather decides to have a chat with him on everyone’s behalf while he’s in the pool (naked of course) and tells him how they feel. When Heather tells them what happened, Liz decides they need to have an intervention, however Ainsley decides it would be a better idea to set up a letter writing system and drop them into a Housemate Feedback box. From there, Ben narrates and tells the housemates how he feels about them in his letters.

After his conversation with Heather, Ben goes to the hospital to apologise for Harry and ends up having a skin check. Harry finds an abnormal mole and Ben reveals he first noticed it last year. Ben gets a biopsy and Harry later reveals the mole is melanoma and he needs to have surgery to get rid of it as it’s larger than two millimetres. When Harry asks about his next of kin, it’s when Ben’s secrets come out—he has a 12 year old daughter, Mia, an ex-wife, Rebecca, and he hasn’t seen Mia in two years as he was in jail for possession of pot. Ben also reveals that he has been painting the house to make it presentable for them.

When Harry comes home from work, he finds the rest of the gang, bar Ben, are ready to give Ben an intervention, however Harry tells them it might not be the best night (although he can’t tell them why due to doctor-patient confidentiality).

Meanwhile, Ben’s letters are read throughout the episode—he adores Ains, praises Heather for her strength and expresses admiration for Liz, and thanks Harry for his help and encourages him to come out to his mother. Ben also reveals his melanoma diagnosis and impending surgery as a P.S. at the end of the letters. Heather reads her letter first and is therefore the first one in the gang to find out about it. She goes to the hospital to both support and give him a lecture. Rebecca and Mia then show up, and Harry and Heather leave the room. After they leave the room, Harry tells Heather about Ben’s secrets.

While Harry and Mia catch up, Harry, Heather and Rebecca are waiting outside. Harry and Heather talk Ben and the house up to Rebecca. Meanwhile Mia figures out that Ben has melanoma.

While Harry and Ben are in surgery, Heather organises Simmo and Ben’s tradie mates to get the house painting finished and gives Ainsley and Liz their letters. Once they’ve read them they’re motivated to pitch in and help finish the painting. Harry comes home and tells everyone Ben will be fine.

When Rebecca picks Ben up from the hospital and takes him home, he shows her the house. He later tells Heather that Rebecca was impressed and they are organising for Mia to come over every once in a while. He later thanks her for her support and kisses her. This was completely out of the blue, not just for Heather, but for me and from what I could tell on Twitter, many viewers as well. While Heather tries to dismiss Ben’s kiss as a drug-fuelled impulse, he tells her he likes her. I felt that this was a forced twist, I genuinely thought he liked Ainsley, however this twist provides the foundations for a love triangle that I hope is executed tastefully and as realistic as possible, and not dramatically or in a cheesy manner.

Overall this was a solid episode, with major character development in Ben, and the establishment of another story arc. From what I could tell in the promos for the next episode, it looks like the next episode will have Liz as the focus and narrator.

 

Stray Observations:

-According to Ben, the gang have been living together in the house for a couple of months.

-Apparently Ben sings on the toilet.

-Apparently Liz has a “being a total bitch” alarm that Harry sets off to warn her when she’s being a bitch.

-Harry is scrubbed up and dressed head-to-toe in medical gear, yet he speaks to Ben without his mask on in the OR. How is that not ruining the sterile environment of an OR?

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “He’s doing nudie runs?” “Nudie strolls…leisurely nudie strolls.” (Heather-Liz on Ben)
  • “For me and by no means is this a main concern, but I do have to bring up his lack of pants.” (Harry to the group on Ben)
  • “I’m sorry but a penis is not an extenuating circumstance.” (Ainsley to Heather on Ben)
  • “He’s the house mascot!” (Heather to Rebecca on Ben)
  • “I think it was a combination of modesty, bashfulness and sheer idiocy.” (Heather to Ainsley and Simmo on Ben telling the gang about his melanoma and surgery through his housemate letters)

 

Five Bedrooms–Season 1, Episode 2 (Twenty Guests)

Now that the pilot has aired and the premise and characters of the show has been established, the fun of story arcs and subplots can begin.

This episode switches its focus and narrator to Heather, as the pilot ended with the gang agreeing to swap Lachlan with Heather.

The episode kicks off with Heather packing her bags in front of Col and telling their sons that she’s leaving. Meanwhile, the rest of the gang are planning on having a housewarming, with Ben and Ainsley going around the neighbourhood to hand out invitations and having to field questions on their living situation with the others. While they are going around the neighbourhood, Ben is trying to setting up Ainsley up with his mate Simmo.

Meanwhile, Heather’s beloved dog, Bruce, has run away and she orders her indifferent sons to look for him, however she discovers that Bruce has found her at the house. Heather spends some time with him, however Col later comes to get him.

Meanwhile, Lachlan does make an appearance in this episode, basically telling Ainsley she should quit and move on to another agency after their awkward interaction and Heather kicking him out. The gang tells her to confront him and Heather tells her that she will be paying him out, she’s waiting on Col to sign her loan application.

While she’s at work, Liz’s boss, Edwina Crowe, tells her that she’s been invited to the housewarming as Ainsley is her real estate agent. Liz panics as she reveals to Ainsley that she hasn’t told her boss that she’s living in the house and that she is divorced, the latter a fact that is also news to Ainsley. To avoid Edwina finding out about her situation, Liz spends the night hiding in another bedroom, only for her to find Edwina making out with a guy called “the fridge” in her own bedroom, when she finally gets the chance to go back there. At the end of the episode, a drunk Edwina tells Liz she doesn’t judge her and actually thinks the idea really isn’t all that bad.

Meanwhile, Heather tries to leave the house and Ben catches her. He agrees to drive her to her house as long as she doesn’t get out of the car. However when Ben gets out of the car, Col catches him and tries to jump over the fence, only to break his wrist, forcing Ben and Heather to take him to hospital. When he’s being checked out, he and Heather finally address their unhappiness in their marriage, although Col clearly still loves her. While it looks like Heather’s going to come back, she stands her ground and asks Col if he’s happy and he tells her that if she’s unhappy he can’t be happy and gives her the signed loan application.

Meanwhile Harry arrives at the party late as he is stuck at work, while his mother, Manju, arrived at the party early with food. She later finds Liz and asks her to help her find an Indian girl for Harry. Although Harry tells his mother to back off when it comes to his love life, he stops short of telling her the truth.

Later on while Ainsley kisses Simmo and sees him getting dressed in her room the next day, he reveals that they didn’t hook up as she went on about her dating history and he tells her that the way she looks and talks about Ben makes it clear she likes him. Ainsley denies this, however when he drives her to work so she can confront Lachlan and congratulates her on successfully putting him in his place, she realises she does in fact like him.

Overall I enjoyed this episode and I found it interesting that the writers switched narrators. I felt it was a smart move to signal to the viewers that the episode’s main focus would switch from Ainsley to Heather, not to mention it keeps the viewers on their toes. Judging from the promos for the next episode, Ben clearly has a health issue (it looked like skin cancer) that he’s going to need surgery for and we discover that he has a daughter, so it will be interesting to see if the narrating switches from Heather to him.

However I am questioning the possibility of Ben as Ainsley’s love interest. While I’m glad that Ainsley told Lachlan off and she’s done with him, I don’t think there is really any chemistry between Ben and Ainsley, I feel he’s more suited to Liz. It honestly felt like this possibility came out of nowhere, but as I like both characters, I’ll be happy to eat my words if this subplot is built up more.

Overall a solid episode.

 

Stray Observations:

-Ainsley’s last name is Eiling.

-Ainsley refers to Simmo as Ben’s “footballing colleague”.

-Heather and Col’s son’s names are Timmy and Louie. They are 21 and 23, although which son is which age isn’t established.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “There may be some tears, some low grade violence…” (Ainsley to the gang on the possibility of Heather trying to leave the house)
  • “It’s not as weird as it looks…but it’s not good.” (Ben on the phone to Ainsley describing what’s going on between Heather and Bruce)
  • “If I attempt to leave this house before dawn, you have my permission to break both my legs.” (Heather to Ben)
  • “Ben tells me you’ve come out of a very disappointing one sided crush.” (Simmo to Ainsley when he meets her)