The Fifth Season
7th Heaven is a family-oriented melodrama that revolves around the Camden family. The main characters include Reverend Eric (Stephen Collins), Annie (Catherine Hicks), Matt (Barry Watson), Mary (Jessica Biel), Lucy (Beverley Mitchell), Simon (David Gallagher), and Ruthie (Mackenzie Rosman). Despite that one of the main characters is a minister the series isn't about religion, but rather the trials that the family members go through. The show's early seasons had a goody-goody tone that has been replaced with more character-driven drama. For more details about the show, please refer to DVD Talk's reviews of season one, season two, season three, and season four.
In season five of 7th Heaven, the drama is kicked up a notch as life gets a little hectic for everyone. Of note, there is a continuing storyline of Mary's rebellious lifestyle at the fore. She repeatedly makes the wrong decisions, which has a drastic effect on the Camdens. Other notable occurrences include Mary's ex-boyfriend Robbie moving into the Camden household, the Camden kids and their love lives, and more.
The most dramatic change this season deals with Mary. In season four, Mary slowly started heading down the wrong path. In this season, her downwards spiral to no-good only gets worst. Mary makes several bad decisions from deciding not to postpone college to stealing from her siblings to ignoring her responsibilities. What it all comes down to is that Mary is no longer the sweet angel she used to be. Instead, she is a troubled young adult. In the episode "Bye", Eric and Annie try to set her straight by sending off to Buffalo, New York to be with her grandparents. They hope The Colonel's strictness will give Mary the right direction. Unfortunately, it does not work out as planned. This story arc was added to the show as a way to write Mary out of the series. After season five, she appears on a non-regular basis.
Mary's drama does not stop there. Her ex-boyfriend Robbie makes several appearances. He comes to the Camden's household in "Surprise". Eric finds out Robbie is homeless and decides to take care of him. His arrival comes without open arms. The rest of the Camdens are not excited to have him around. He integrates himself in the household and stirs up some unintentional drama that includes his father visiting, Robbie-Mary tension, Robbie becoming fast friends with Matt's best bud John, and a few love triangles.
Lucy has a lot of drama at the foot of her door. It is her senior year in high school and between boys and popularity, she is a busy gal. She has several guys on her mind. Of note, there is her relationship with friend Mike (Jeremy Lelliot). Lucy and Mike give dating a try, which does not work out. However, late into the season sparks fly when she meets Jeremy (David Lago). They get serious and even make a solid commitment to each other. Lucy also has other things to consider, such as college, homecoming, and more.
Matt and his dating life continue to play a significant role. His ex-girlfriend Heather continues to be a thorn in his side. He really cares for her, but they break-up (again) and try to move on. Of course, she meets someone else, which does not bode well for Matt. To complicate matters, Mat learns something mysterious about Robbie and Heather. He also has college ordeals to cope with. Specifically, he decides to go for pre-med and applies to medical school. His best friend and roommate John also proposes to his girlfriend.
Simon's love life also goes full force. He attempts to date an older woman, considers having sexual intercourse, and is troubled by Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen in "Gossip". Ruthie, who has been growing up, starts to get in a little trouble too. She transfer into a new school, which she skips class. She tricks Robbie into settling the matter with her teacher. Ruthie also starts to keep a racy diary that includes some details Eric and Annie would prefer to keep behind closed doors. Throughout the season, Eric and Annie do their best to maintain their cool as their children go through ups and downs of life. They also have their own issues to deal with, which includes Annie's ex-boyfriend getting to close to her and Annie finding out she has a sister.
Overall, 7th Heaven's fifth season continues with a similar tone set in season four. The drama is character-driven and focuses on the soapy melodrama that ensues from the character's love, academic, and professional lives. The early seasons' goody-goody, family-oriented aspect is not a primary factor. Instead, the show feels more like a soap, which has its ups and downs. Needless to say, if you enjoyed season four, then season five should also be pretty fun.
1. Here We Go Again: A new school year finds Simon, Matt, and Lucy living the single life again. Meanwhile, Mary decides to postpone college just as Annie returns for her teaching certificate.
Please note the box cover claims "some episodes may be edited from their original network television versions. Music has been changed for this home entertainment version".