To say I was overjoyed when Season Five of Virgin River finally dropped on Netflix recently is an understatement. Putting it simply, my husband’s ears are still recovering from my glee and I’m still not quite over all that happened. Oh, and knowing there are not one but TWO Christmas episodes coming in November to finish off this season…well I am over the moon and then some! So let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and, of course, if you haven’t watched it yet, here is the obligatory warning — there are spoilers ahead!
Preacher, Paige, Julia and a girl with the most stunning eyes!
Season Five kicks off with the confrontation between Preacher, Paige and Vince that we saw at the end of Season Four, and we see that Vince is alive (unlike his brother Wes, who is Paige’s ex-husband if you recall). Mike arrives on the scene and Vince is immediately arrested — yay!
Paige is free, at last, double yay! What’s not so double yay is the bombshell she drops later. A bombshell that comes after Preacher tells Julia (the lady he met in Season Three) that their relationship is over. Not that they really had one to begin with, but you can see that Julia is somewhat blindsided by Preacher telling her he still has feelings for Paige.
Sidenote and a bit of trivia for you: Julia is played by Lucia Walters, who is married to Preacher/Colin Lawrence in real life!
So it’s goodbye to Julia, and Preacher goes back to Paige — except Paige isn’t acting herself and the aforementioned bombshell hits Preacher left, right and centre! Now that Paige has been granted a new lease of life, she’s ready to explore and leave Virgin River because there are too many demons lurking in the shadows, thanks to her ex. She asks Preacher to go with her, but Virgin River is his home, therefore it’s a no from him.
My heart aches for them both really, even though I love the sense of empowerment from Paige. When she leaves, Preacher sets his sights on work and the life of a bachelor again. But wait…he then meets a lady with the most stunning eyes I have ever seen. She also happens to be a firefighter and, to say the least, things quickly become combustible between her and Preach!
Muriel, Cameron and woah!
Okay, so this was one story arc I never saw coming. And let me preface this by saying that the woah above is an exceptionally good woah. The woah that had me gasping and laughing and cheering these two on when they start developing feelings for one another!
Whoever writes the show could have easily taken this down the wrong path, because a) we don’t know how old they are and b) presume it’s a significant gap. But it was refreshing to see that Muriel wasn’t made out to be a cougar and that Cameron is really a nice guy. And then there’s that line: ‘it would be so sad if our first kiss ended up being our last’ and I get all the feels. Cue the sighs!
Doc and Hope: I adore you two!
Okay, if you’ve read any of my previous articles on Virgin River, you’ll know I love these two characters to bits. UNEQUIVOCALLY. This season they have a lot to deal with — from Hope losing her mayorship to Doc’s eyesight deteriorating to the point a patient’s life is almost put in danger. There’s even more drama with Lizzie and Denny and the crafting circle, and I’m almost beside myself.
But Virgin River also allows Hope and Doc to shine, which they do best in the face of adversity. And often with hilarity too, like a memorable mud fight between Hope and Jo Ellen. Tim Matheson and Annette O’Toole are amazing actors, and their chemistry together is off the charts. They simply can do no wrong in my eyes.
RELATED: I Binged all of Virgin River and Ranked the Main Characters in Order of Who I Would Most Like to Have a Cosmopolitan at Jack’s Bar With
Did someone say drama?
Season five delivers the drama in spades and this is just a hint of it…
The fire: just one of the many things we love about Virgin River — it’s majestic landscape — is under threat BIG-time when a bushfire takes hold and puts quite a few people in harm’s way. Thankfully, no one actually dies but there’s considerable damage done to the environment and houses.
Melissa: if you recall she’s the lady who took over Calvin’s drug-running business when his boat exploded in Season Four (more on that below). Well, Melissa, as we know, is a nasty piece of work and I feel sorry for Brady who is caught in her web of lies (again more on that below). She even ruins Jack’s glamping business through her nefarious ways!
Lizzie: we see a lot more of her this season as she takes on a new role as Hope’s aide, which is no mean feat as we know how irascible Hope can occasionally be. Lizzie is a smart girl though and helps Hope through some trying times. But Hope helps Lizzie too, and these two are a surprise package to say the least. Of course, I am flummoxed when Lizzie delivers a big announcement at the end!
Denny: seems to be settling into life in Virgin River, but when his grandmother wants to come to town, we just know it’s not going to end well. Come on, this is the woman who kept her pregnancy with Doc’s baby a secret for fifty years. Fifty years, folks! And that child died so Doc never got to meet his son! Grandma is not a particularly good role model for you, Denny!
Charmaine: aka Public Enemy Number One, delivered the bombshell last season that Jack wasn’t the father of her twins, and he was understandably shattered. Of course, Jack’s still feeling all that when he confronts Charmaine and tells her she broke his heart! She counters that her heart was broken too when he fell in love with Mel, and I’m, like, oh no, you can’t make me feel sorry for you, Charmaine! I’m also, like, who is the father then? Of course she doesn’t say, but we do find out later when Calvin turns up very much alive (I just KNEW he didn’t die in that explosion!) and we learn he is the daddy-to-be, and I take the punch to my gut quite valiantly, I think!
The fall-out; wow, there’s so much to unpack from the above that I truly don’t know where to start. Suffice it to say the knock-out punches that we were dealt will have lasting ramifications. How is that going to turn out? I have no freaking idea.
Brady, Brie and Mike: I cannae take much more, Captain!
I wasn’t looking forward to writing this bit because I have a soft spot for bad boys looking for redemption and Brady has held a place in my heart for a long time. I loved seeing him and Brie together and wanted him to just tell her that he was trying to protect her, and that he and Mike were trying to set a trap for Melissa! But Brady doesn’t and Brie can’t take the secrecy any longer, and this is where she lost me! Look, I know she’s broken and going through a lot with the trial and what happened to her, but Brady is just as broken and these two were supposed to mend one another!
The writers are definitely taking a leaf from the books and are starting to steer Brie towards Mike, and, yes, I can see they make a lot more sense. FINE. However, it hurt me to see Brady hurting! Enter Lark: a young single mum who seems to have a lot in common with Brady. His interactions with daughter Hazel are so cute and I can’t wait to see where this all ends up. Brady’s redemption it had better be or else I will riot!
Mel and Jack and my heart implodes. Then is mended again!
THE couple of Virgin River, the one that makes me come back to the show repeatedly because I am that invested in their HEA, had me chomping at the bit to see where this season was going to take them. And I have to admit I cried — okay, I actually sobbed — when Mel discovered she had miscarried. I warned you there were spoilers!! As expected she and Jack are devastated, and my heart is literally broken. Especially when Jack, is like, ‘we can try again’ and poor Mel can’t deal with that. After everything she has been through previously, who can blame her?
As the season progresses, Mel has found a kindred spirit in Ava, Lilly’s other daughter who has returned to Virgin River. While the aforementioned fire makes for scary times when Lilly’s farm is destroyed. Thankfully, Mel and Jack rescue Ava and baby Chloe from the flames just in time!
Jack is also fortunate when the bar survives the fire — thanks to Brady. Mel, who shocked Doc by leaving the practice in the first episode because of the baby, now returns to work because it’s where she belongs. She and Jack also take a hike through the woods, which is quite the trek when Jack gets them lost and the heavens open up with a major downpour! When Mel starts screaming because it feels like they just can’t take a break, I cheer her on from the comfort of my dry house.
Of course, our adventurers are going to be fine and the tension between Mel and Jack dissipates as he reminds her that, even in is his darkest moments, he was able to find the courage to move forward. And she will too. They can adopt, which Mel doesn’t seem that keen on at first, but warms up to later on.
So is a baby still on the horizon for these two? I’d bet my dry home on that being yes! And I will wait for however long it takes because this is Mel and Jack, and my heart is now mended when Mel delivers a fitting ending by telling Jack they should buy Lilly’s farm because there is no better place to raise a family.
And just when all seems perfect in Virgin River again, Mel takes a call from her sister, Joey, who drops the cliffhanger that their mother had an affair with someone in Virgin River, and that person may be Mel’s father! Wait? What! Now I’m eagerly awaiting November’s two Christmas episodes. See you then!