Pretty Little Liars Season 4 Episode 12 – TV Review
Hanna Fashionistard Counter:
I wanted to to give her a break, but there’s a piece on each outfit this week that I just couldn’t ignore. And I deserve this. I can’t be generous 2 weeks in a row.
Our count is now 8 malign, 4 sublime.
It was always going to be difficult topping last season’s Summer finale. And predictably, this one doesn’t quite reach the utter WTFness of that one.
But hey, we’ve got another A revelation. And this one is a fuckton juicier than Toby.
TL;DR It’s Ezra. A is Ezra. We’ve also got confirmation that Cece is Red Coat (but there’s more than one. Naturally), and Alison surived the night she disappeared, and is presumably not dead. And Ashley’s charges are dropped.
Plot lines unite:
The Liars mostly stay together this episode. They receive threatening deliveries from A which warn retaliation if Ashley is released. She is, so A implies they’ve kidnapped and will kill Mona (and frame the Liars). The clues lead them back to Ravenswood, where Emily is kidnapped and almost sawed in half. Red Coat stops the saw in time. Aria catches Cece, but she gets away. Spencer chases Red Coat 2 to an apartment: A’s lair. A has conspiracy boards for everyone, including Red Coat, so it looks like they aren’t on the same team. Red Coat 2 gets away, but Mrs Grunwald confronts the Liars and admits she did know Alison: she’s a psychic who Alison had asked to help her find out who was threatening her. On the night Alison disappeared, Grunwald found her buried in the gazebo area and pulled her out alive. She then disappeared. The episode ends with the Liars preparing to infiltrate a Ravenswood ball where A’s notes indicate Alison to be making an appearance.
Oh, and A returns to their exposed lair and is revealed to be Ezra. Sheeeeit.
Individual minor subplots include Aria’s reconnecting with Ezra (oops), Mona turning up fine and appearing to be in league with Shana and a mystery “she,” Toby giving up on his search for truth about his mum, Cece being identified by police as a suspect in Wilden’s murder, and Paige and Emily seeming strong as a couple.
So yeah, I guess the only really critical thing I could say about this episode is that it doesn’t live up to last year’s Summer finale. But I suppose we can’t have Emily killing someone every year. Too much wangst would ensue.
Why I hate this episode:
When the Liars decide they have to do something about the missing Mona, they all split up to do some real, Scooby gang style detective work on the case. Except Aria. Who goes home to have a dinner date with Jake. I know Hanna condoned it (because he’d be handy to have around for self defence), but I’m happy to jump on any opportunity to ridicule Aria. It’s what she’s there for.
Aria also has a sook about how Jake wanted to have dinner in instead of going to some poetry reading. Stop pretending you’re so profound, Aria.
Double demerits when she runs into Ezra there and they have coffee and she kisses him and shit. Who do you think you are? Tully?
Near the end of the episode we see Caleb get onto a bus headed for Ravenswood (clearly a nod to the upcoming spin-off). I don’t know why this is supposed to be so moody and heavy. The Liars literally just drove there a couple of hours ago. It’s not a big deal. Also, why?
Ravenswood is still all washed out and “foreboding.” Stupid.
After Cece has her supposedly fatal fall in the sawmill, the Liars freak out and assume she’s dead. Check her pulse or something you fuckwits. No surprises when she Michael Myers that shit and sneaks off. FFS.
We don’t get anything else on Wren, which is a shame. We do see Shana creeping around inside his house, but it looks like we’ll have to wait to get anything worthwhile. I want it noooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.
Toby has a cry over some of his mum’s old stuff. Pfft, Barbie owns manly tears.
Oh, and the Liars find evidence that A has founded a corporation and, like, people (eg. Cece) are on the payroll. This shit is getting fucking ridiculous. What the flying fucking fuckhouse did Alison do that would push anyone this far? She better have some goddamn diamonds stashed somewhere or something. This is absolutely insane if it’s just for revenge over a perceived slight. It’s making Revenge look small by comparison, which is not a good thing.
Reasons to watch:
Those sweet, sweet revelations: Alison is fucking (FUCKING) alive. Ezra is A. Although I fully expect Ezra to have some Toby-esque excuse and actually be protecting Aria. There’s no way PLL would risk permanently alienating the Ezria shippers. The fanbase would implode.
I like the whole “A is against everyone” thing. So Cece, Red Coat 2, Wren, Mona, Shana, Jenna, and maybe Alison all have motives that are separate to A. We could totes use some villain vs villain action.
Speaking of Alison, Grunwald says that Alison doesn’t trust anyone. The Liars shoot back that she can trust them, but Grunwald says Alison don’t, gurl. Ooh.
A’s deliveries to the Liars are cute. First they get magic 8 balls that spell out a threat if Ashley is released, then they get a baby coffin with a Mona doll, then they get a trick box with a saw inside. Bonus points for Hanna’s non-sequitur obsession with how the trick box mechanism works. It was a lighthearted moment that we needed.
Travis fails to correctly pick Ashley from a line-up to corroborate his witness statement. This doesn’t stop the police from releasing her, but Travis is cute, so I’m okay with some flimsy reasons to keep him around.
We also don’t know where the police sketch and later identification of Cece came from. A? Intrigue.
I’ll give Aria some pity points for her claim early in the episode that she only wants to be friends with Ezra. Yes, she does capitulate and becomes a dirty slut later, but Aria’s gotta take victories where she can find ’em, you know?
Ashley thanks Caleb for looking after Hanna for her. Aww.
Toby gets over his unjustified brattiness and tells Spencer that he’s done with letting A lead him around by the nose on the trail of his mum’s mystery death. I hope this means he’ll drop it altogether.
Toby spots Shana at the coffee shop and sees her drop a packing slip. It’s Wren sending stuff to Melissa in London, which Toby and Spencer assume means they’re back together. I’m down with that. They’re both pretty slimy, so they should make a good adversarial team for the Liars. And maybe even help them in an Enemy Mine situation against A. Either way, Melissa is a formidable opponent. And Wren’s pretty.
During the hunt for Mona, Paige brings up a valid point to Emily: why do you give a shit? Emily says the Liars are responsible for creating the monster Mona became. Paige counters that Alison did that, but Emily realises it’s only because the Liars let her do it. Self awareness and reasonable self loathing? Good work.
I lol’d at Emily almost dying.
Aria actually puts some of her Jake training to use when battling Cece. So he might not be entirely useless after all.
Hanna steals a diary from the A lair without the other Liars seeing. I want to know.
PLL manages to find a less than supernatural reason for Grunwald, which I’m glad for: she’s psychic. It’s not great, but it’s not bullshit.
Oh, and I did genuinely want to give Hanna a pass this episode. But I’ve slammed her for a bad jacket before, so it would be hypocritical of me to let her slide on one now. That’s on the second outfit, though. The first outfit, which is below, has a nice jacket. But a crap top. At least she’s wearing pants.