‘Five Blind Dates’ Ending Explained & Movie Spoilers: Who Does Lia End Up With?

Five Blind Dates is a romantic comedy—well, not so firm on the comedy part, but it’s still quite romantic. The director Shawn Seet shares his view about the balance between traditionalism and modernity. It’s something that I have been thinking about quite often lately. Where do we stand in the modern age? I suppose people of cultures like ourselves represent our own interpretations of the cultures we come from. Our previous generations often complained about modernism being the antithesis of traditionalism, and I think their worries have been both right and wrong at the same time. I suppose Lia, the drama’s main character, is battling a similar chain of thought while running an old Chinese tea shop representative of her traditions. As a tea connoisseur who loves Darjeeling and Oolong, I can certainly understand this young woman’s frustration towards customers asking for ‘boba tea.’ I do not oppose the idea of boba tea, but I feel weird about spending a fortune on tea and tapioca—a good ol’ cuppa capitalism—just to hop on the bandwagon. 


Spoilers Ahead

Why Is Lia Hopeless About Love?

Lia is a third-generation Chinese Australian in her late 20s, living by herself in Sydney. She moved away from her family in Townsville, as she found it rather suffocating. In Sydney, Lia struggles to run an old Chinese tea shop, passed on to her by her late grandmother, with whom she was very close. Her grandmother also left her with a sizable fortune, which she seems to have exhausted on her shop. Lia and her gay best friend, Mason, have been coming up with new tactics to run the shop but have been met with only failure. Having spent the entirety of her time for the past two years running her shop, she hasn’t had time to engage in any romantic endeavors. Even when she is hit on by men, she fails to catch on to what’s happening and has been quite lonely because of it. 


Why Does Lia Go On Five Blind Dates?

The failure of her tea shop only adds to Lia’s embarrassment, compelling her to conceal the challenges she faces when she attends her younger sister Alice’s engagement party in Townsville. Following the engagement traditions, the family hires a fortune teller for Alice, who also predicts that Lia must find her soulmate to achieve success in her business; she’ll meet this person within the next five dates. While Lia isn’t a staunch believer in fortune-telling, her family, knowing her inability to find romance, decides to take the initiative for her and pressures her to comply. Despite her stress over managing her business, she does harbor a desire to find a life partner and settle down. However, the mounting stress intensifies as she approaches the deadline for payment of her shop’s lease. 

Why Do The Dates Arranged By Her Family Not Work Out For Lia? 

The first date she goes on is set up by her father. Her father, Xian, is not very pro-family. A money-minded man, Xian sets her up with Apollo, a billionaire with a rather hedonistic, non-monogamous lifestyle. Apollo has a lot of money but does not believe in love and sees the prospect of marriage to Lia as an arrangement. Theoretically, a relationship with Apollo would’ve financially benefited Lia, but she craves a fulfilling and loving relationship, rejecting him in the end. Her second date is set up by her mother, Jing, with Ezra, a teacher and linguist at her Chinese school. Their date takes place at a botanical garden, which is quite a favorable setting for Lia given her background. She shows Ezra around the garden, plucking different herbs, until she offers Ezra some ashwagandha, which he is allergic to. She saves him in time by administering an adrenaline shot. Bonding over their emotional pasts, Lia and Ezra engage in a kiss, which turns disastrous when Ezra utters her mother’s name instead. Realizing that Ezra is actually in love with her mother, Lia rejects him as well. 


Alice’s third blind date takes place during a beach retreat organized by her sister as part of her wedding festivities. The date is with Curtis, a spiritual guide, yoga instructor, and a bodybuilder with a Shakespearean choice of words, whose presence makes her heart flutter and even helps alleviate her fear of water. Overall, her time with Curtis is wonderful, but on her way back, she finds herself in a heated argument with Richard, a man with whom she has a history, due to his disparaging remarks about Curtis, which deeply infuriate her.

What Happened Between Lia And Richard In The Past?

Lia and Richard first reconnected after several years at Alice’s engagement party, but Lia appeared less than thrilled to see him. Richard is supposed to be the best man at Alice and Nigel’s wedding. After a night of heavy drinking, Lia wakes up next to a shirtless Richard, who fortunately dispels the misconception that they spent the night together. They encounter each other again when Richard visits Lia’s shop in Sydney to assist with preparations for the wedding. However, their meeting turns sour. During their argument following Lia’s date with Curtis, their past together is revealed. Lia and Richard had made a pact as 15-year-olds to open a tea shop together in Sydney. However, as they grew older, Richard backed out of the promise, feeling obligated to prioritize his family responsibilities. Lia still harbors resentment toward him for breaking their agreement.


Does Lia’s Business Work Out?

Lia visits her family to assist in selecting Alice’s wedding dress, but the meeting quickly escalates into a heated argument when her family blames her attitude for her unsuccessful romantic endeavors. Lia believes that her mother’s restrictive upbringing pushed her away and prevented her from discovering what truly brings her happiness. She holds her mother responsible for her inability to date like a “normal” person. Distraught, Lia returns to her tea shop in Sydney wearing a torn wedding dress from the earlier altercation.

To add to her distress, Mason drops another bombshell by presenting her with an eviction notice. When a customer requests boba tea, Lia breaks down and angrily lashes out, passionately explaining the significance of her tea. Embarrassed by the ordeal, she isolates herself until Mason asks her out on a date to lift her spirits. During this time, she recalls the wisdom her grandmother imparted about finding her own balance in life, which resonates with her as an adult, motivating her to give life another chance. Realizing that her traditionalist approach needs reevaluation to cater to the market, Lia rearranges her shop and develops a new business concept. The next day, she is greeted by an unusually large crowd outside her shop, which Mason reveals to be her fans. It turns out that a video of her breakdown from the previous day has gone viral, making Lia an internet sensation overnight. In the end, her business finally achieves success.

Who Does Lia End Up With?

At the end of Five Blind Dates, Lia attends Alice’s wedding without a date but reconciles with her sister and apologizes for their previous conflicts. She learns that Richard, whom she had misjudged, had stayed up all night to help with wedding preparations despite his own struggles. Richard reveals to Lia that he faced significant challenges after high school, including his mother’s illness, which forced him to take on the responsibility of caring for his family, keeping it a secret from Lia. Realizing the depth of Richard’s dedication and the hardships he endured, Lia begins to see him in a new light. During the wedding reception, Lia delivers a heartfelt speech as the maid of honor, subtly expressing her newfound appreciation for Richard. Encouraged by Alice, Lia decides to pursue her feelings for Richard and seeks him out. They have a candid conversation where Richard confesses that he kept his mother’s health issues private from her because she would’ve stayed. He wanted her to pursue her dreams and move away from Townsville. Moved by Richard’s sincerity and their deepening connection, Lia takes a chance and asks him out on a date.

While very cheesy to its core, Five Blind Dates weaves together themes of Asian identity, familial expectations, personal growth, and the complexities of modern romance. Lia’s journey reflects the challenges many face in balancing tradition with modernity, particularly in matters of love and identity. Through a series of blind dates orchestrated by her family, Lia confronts her past, navigates misunderstandings, and ultimately finds clarity and acceptance. As she reconciles with Richard and embraces her own aspirations, Lia exemplifies the importance of self-discovery and authenticity in forging meaningful connections. 


Shrey Ashley Philip
Shrey Ashley Philip
A teacher, photographer, linguist, and songwriter, Shrey started out as a Biotechnology graduate, but shifted to studying Japanese. Now he talks about movies, advocates for ADHD awareness, and embraces Albert Camus.

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