Full disclosure, your MAFS Recap queen Chantelle is sick so I’m stepping in to give it a crack. Howdy and hello.
It’s the morning of the fifth dinner party and after all the drama at the couples retreat, I’m praying for a wine-throwing incident. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Claire and Jesse are vibing again, which judging by the flashback, the MAFS producers attribute to Jesse’s nudie run at the retreat.
Nothing says “I wanna get back with my wife” then a nudie run, if you ask me.
But as she helps him put on his suspenders, they genuinely seem like they’re getting along. Maybe love isn’t dead, after all?
After their tiff at the couples retreat, Tayla is MIA and Hugo has to be a big boy and button his own shirt. While he’s hoping to get an apology from her, he’s got no clue that she’s already legged it back to Tassie.
Thankfully, she sent Claire a text before turning on aeroplane mode so it’ll come out at the dinner party. Good.
Following Alyssa and Prince Eric’s (Duncan) little spat, things are pretty icy. Like an absolute communication king he sits down to have a chat, speaking openly about how he’s feeling WHILE he helps her lace up her heels.
But Alyssa thinks he’s just saying what she wants to hear.
If my partner looked like Prince Eric I’d be okay with that, but that’s just me.
After a few good night’s sleep from slaying Bunnings Daddy (Harrison) at the retreat, Melinda and Layton are stronger than ever. But sadly, unlike Alyssa, her partner is not written by a woman and she is left to tie her own heels.
Meanwhile, the fire of a thousand suns is burning in Bronte’s eyes as she recounts the way Bunnings Daddy broke up with her after the couples retreat.
“I don’t know how you can say you’re falling in love with somebody and break up with me over text message. How do you do that?” she asks the producer.
Thankfully, Bunnings Daddy arrives in his Bunnings button-down to give her some answers.
Bunnings Daddy says he got super confused when Melinda informed him he was in a fake relationship. Potentially Bronte had forwarded him the email, but it must have gone to spam. The news shocks him, and in a move they should’ve run past their PR team, he decides to break up with her via text.
But despite the break up text he sent, Bunnings Daddy is confused when Bronte says their “marriage is over.”
“I think the commitment ceremony is where we say whether our marriage is over or not. I think I ended our relationship,” he says, genuinely confused.
As you’d expect, things are pretty tense in the Uber to the commitment ceremony.
Jesse and Claire are the first couple to arrive at the cocktail party and they’re fkn stoked to finally be able to put their feet up on the couch without being told off by someone. Melinda and Layton arrive followed by Ollie and Tahnee, and Rupert and Evelyn.
Rupert is quick to update the boys that things are progressing between him and Evelyn.
“We haven’t gone the distance just yet but we’ve built a great foundation,” he said.
Someone get this guy in marketing, stat.
As the boys do their best to avoid naughty words like “sex”, Claire decides to tell the gals that Tayla has made a run for it back to Tassie.
Meanwhile Hugo sings to himself in the Taxi. I can’t with this man. I feel like we’re about to watch him get his soul crushed in real time.
The brides question whether Hugo knows his wife has chucked a runner and quickly discover he’s living in pure ignorant bliss. But instead of telling him right away, they let just the elephant in the room stomp around until everyone, including the experts, can’t stand the awkwardness.
Thankfully, Claire pulls him aside and puts him out of his misery. Yep, there it is. Hugo looks like someone’s shot his puppy. After taking a sec to digest the news, the resilient king is just keen to have a few free bevvies with the boys.
Next to arrive is Cam and Tahnee. Cam is taking a style risk by wearing his hair out and the other contestants are eating it up.
It’s clear that the country boy is feeling his oats and I love that for him.
Finally, Bronte and Bunnings Daddy enter the cocktail party. While they arrive together Bronte immediately stomps to the girls leaving her hubby in her wake.
The room parts like the red sea as Bronte opens court, swishing her hair back before she unleashes on her now ex hubby. The girls are sympathetic, but you can just tell they’re fkn stoked to finally tear him to shreds.
Meanwhile, Bunnings Daddy takes a deep breath and puts his onion slices back in his pocket to update the blokes. But while he waits for his tears to load he bows his head, claiming his brain’s not working today. Don’t cha think he’d be used to that by now?
Although he eventually gives a heartfelt performance, we’ve got a bunch of critical thinkers this season and they ain’t buying it.
“Every time he does tear up, god bless him, he actually doesn’t cry. He actually doesn’t,” Ollie explains. Hmm funny about that.
Melinda does a pretty spot on impression of him too.
It’s finally time to sit down for dinner and within the first ten minutes, Bronte is reaching her limit.
You know when someone pisses you off so much that every innocuous thing they do is infuriating?
After what feels like a lifetime of pleasantries, Alyssa decides she’s bored and brings up what we’ve all been waiting for; Harrison’s take down.
Cue Bunnings Daddy’s second performance of the night. As he spews garbage about trust, Bronte summons an actual demon while Claire literally can’t stop herself from laughing.
“Is that funny?” he asks her.
“Mmhmm that’s fucking hilarious actually,” Claire snorts.
He goes on to say that the problem in their relationship is how Bronte continually breaks his trust. Well, as this is a filmed reality show and we have receipts, maybe it’s the continual lies and delusional attitude but okay go off king.
Bronte, whose eyes are about to pop out of her head from fury, isn’t going to cop his bullshit. She tells him how she’s 100% invested in the relationship and is even willing to move to Sydney for him.
In this economy? Maybe she really does have feelings for him after all.
But old mate isn’t buying it, calling her response a “very wishy-washy, flippant answer.”
Bronte has been pretty tolerant with this fuck knuckle but even she’s reached boiling point, and storms out into the car park with Lyndall hot on her tail.
The poor doll breaks out into tears. I genuinely feel bad for her, I really do.
But I am relieved that at least one person in their PR relationship can act.
With Bronte out of the room, Bunnings Daddy continues to wax lyrical about his wounds from the relationship, the girlies ain’t buying it. Claire is the first into the ring, calling Bunnings Daddy out for his manipulative behaviour.
“You know what you need to do,” muses Claire. “You need to take off that shirt, stick it on a pole and wave it around because you’re a giant red flag.”
But as we’ve seen many times before, Bunnings Daddy knows how to deflect, claiming that Claire told Bronte that she was only still in the experiment to repair her image after she copped shit for smooching former groom Adam.
Claire denies it all, and honestly, after all the bullshit he spouted about Duncan and Alyssa during the couples retreat, we should be taking everything Bunnings Daddy says with a heaping spoonful of salt.
Although Harrison is genuinely shit stirring to get the other’s off his back, the allegations hit home for Jesse, who now looks like a shell of a man.
It’s all coming to the surface now.
“You might like a little bit about me but at your core you don’t like me,” he tells Claire.
We’re seeing the man vomit his insecurities out before our eyes. He’s being vulnerable and honest and it’s heartbreaking to watch. Oh, how the tables have turned from the beginning of this episode.
If you thought the night couldn’t get more dramatic, hold ya fkn horses because in clomps Tayla from Tassie. Did you get held up in Sydney Domestic Airport, darls?
Hugo is bamboozled. The poor dude was just trying to enjoy his last free feed in peace.
“I did a runner at 4 o’clock in the morning on Friday,” Tayla says with a mane flick.
The pair wander off for a chat. Although Tayla has purely come back to throw some shade on her hubby, she’d decided to be demure in her fluorescent purple maxi dress and be the bigger person.
“Oooh I think, I’m going to choose to not grill you on everything. I could sit here all night,” she tells him,
According to Tayla, Hugo turned everyone against her, shut her out, and let her down as a person. But in the biggest 360 of the season, she tells him she’s willing to give it another crack.
“I believe everyone deserves second chances if their heart is in the right place,” she says in a monotone voice.
She may be delusional but she’s trying, I guess.
While Hugo continues to look utterly bamboozled, he’s pretty much ready to call it a day on their relationship. Tayla is shocked that he’s not grovelling at her feet.
“Do we even need to go to the commitment ceremony? We both know we don’t want this.”
After absolutely not seeing eye to eye about their entire relationship, the pair finally agree on one thing; they’re donezo.
So it’s a big cya to Hugo and Tayla but before they make like a baby and head on out, Tayla has one confession to make; she stole Hugo’s wedding ring when she was pissed with him and hid it in her shoe.
Say what you want about Tayla but she’s producing her own storylines now and that’s a crafty queen who goes above and beyond for our own enjoyment.
Now that the Hugo/Tayla intermission is over, we’re back to Bunnings Daddy and Bronte. Melinda won’t let him get off that easily.
“I feel like I got handed tickets to this performance and I’m wondering where I can get a refund,” she says. You just know she practiced that in front of her bathroom mirror but god it was good.
Bunnings Daddy isn’t just going to cop it, taking his aim at Melinda and Layton.
“From what I’ve heard about you, you sound like a living nightmare,” he tells Melinda.
After last time they were attacked by Bunnings Daddy, they aren’t phased in the slightest. In fact, it’s brought them closer together. Nothing makes you bond with someone more than hating the same person.
As the chaotic night draws to a close, we’re left with the viewing pleasure of watching as old mate turns as red as his Bunnings button up.
God, I’m out of breath. That was a lot.
Get some rest and Chantelle will be back for the commitment ceremony. Lord knows you’ll need a MAFS recap expert to take on that upcoming dumpster fire.
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