Pretty Little Liars Season 5 Episode 4 – TV Review
And everyone calm down, Hanna didn’t go brunette.
Praise be to Paris (Hilton, that is), our prayers were answered.
TL;DR Alison keeps up her little kidnapping lie; Aria falls deeper into killer’s guilt; Peter shapes up as the prime suspect in Jessica’s murder; Mona is still waiting to launch her anti-Alison assault.
Bitch has to come back to school first.
So what’s the plots?
Aria pisses all over the place this episode with her continued obsession with Shana’s death. She unloads her paranoia onto Ezra, who can only withstand her so long.
Spencer becomes concerned that a recently purchased bucket of rat poison she finds in the Hastings family shed might be what killed Jessica, and attributes it to Peter. The coroner rules out poisoning, and Jessica instead died due to someone tampering with her medication. Spencer’s relief turns to panic when she finds Peter has his own prescription for the medication that killed her. Spencer also flirts meekly with Andrew (Hot Nerd).
Hanna accompanies Alison to a police-ordered medical examination. Alison’s anxiety over the kidnapping fib being exposed is mounting, and Hanna reluctantly agrees to continue going along with it. A mystery scar on Alison’s inner thigh that Alison refuses to explain makes her suspicious. She also starts shoplifting again for some reason.
Emily hangs out with Sydney and Paige for a bit. Mona says Paige is either with or against her plan to fuck up Alison, so Paige tells Emily to encourage Alison not to return to school. Emily also isn’t sure if she still wants to bang Alison or not.
Alison dated Ezra, Em. She’s spoiled goods.
The episode made a few attempts at implying the presence of A, but we’re still yet to have them fully return. My delight in their prolonged absence is soured by my increasing worry that their return is creeping ever closer.
But let’s enjoy ourselves while we can. Mona’s about to step up. Surely PLL will give her a chance to shine before A barges back in to claim the ominous threat crown.
Why I hate this episode:
But seriously, Mona, hurry up. Classic Mona wouldn’t have waited until Alison swaggered back into Rosewood High to enact her plans. She’d be besieging that house like there’s no tomorrow. And given that Aria is now a card-carrying A killer, there might be no tomorrow, dear.
Speaking of Aria, Aria is shit. Still. Again. Forever. And always. No shocks anymore.
She Googles Shana and finds video footage of her funeral that she is able to view. I’m not big on funeral knowledge, but is that a thing? If it is, that’s really fucking weird. “Yeah, sure, Mrs Funeral Director. You can use footage of us grieving over our dead, 17 year-old family member to advertise your business.” I wouldn’t.
She then unzips her crazy bag all over Ezra, and of course, the whipped little man is more than willing to waste all his time helping her keep her mind off it. Interestingly, though, he has his limit, as he more or less shoves her out the door once he gets sleepy. Nicely done.
Alison is continuing her mission of being a pathetic, teary loser. God knows why. The fact that she is forcing the Liars to uphold her deceptions is my only consolation to her seemingly endless torrent of whingeing and sooking. Just get back to school so you can start warring with Mona. Jesus.
Hanna may not have gone brunette, but she did get bleh-to-the-blah black streaks in her hair. This has the twofold misfortune of being both 1) rubbish; and 2) almost no change to her old hair at all. I didn’t even notice it for the first couple of seconds because it’s so subtle. What a wasted effort.
Paige is against Mona’s plan enough to give Emily a warning, but not so far against it that she’ll blow all the details open. Because she supports Alison’s bullying victims getting their revenge. Fuck you, Paige. If they believe Alison’s kidnap story (which Lucas proves at least he does), then hasn’t this poor girl been through enough? Bitch.
Veronica has a shitfit about her backyard getting dug up because it’s a crime scene (Jessica was buried closer to the Hastings house than the Dilaurentis house, evidently). That’s dumb. What’s dumber, is that Andrew only exists in the plot so Spencer can ask him to help repair it because Toby is away. Pfft.
Emily hasn’t hooked up with Sydney yet. In fact, I don’t know if she’s even Gay Swimmer Love Interest #3 yet. What gives, PLL? If you’re gonna insult us with another gay swimmer love interest, at least get this ship on the road.
Hanna brushes off both Lucas, and a text from Travis. Now that Lucas has sprouted some facial hair, both he and Travis are officially more manly than Caleb. Move on, Han.
To add to her regression, Hanna also arbitrarily shoplifts, I assume as some kind of reaction to the stress of perpetuating Alison’s lies. Whatever.
Aria, Emily, and Spencer whine about how a life with Alison back and with A gone wasn’t the golden age they thought it would be. Boo fucking hoo.
Oh, and Aria hits a new low regarding the Shana thing by trying to anonymously donate money to cover the cost of her memorial service. If Ezra, the serial teenage girl lech, has to tell you to be more sensible about something, you know you’re totally fucked up.
But it’s not all bad:
The one intelligent thing Aria does all episode comes after she imposes on Ezra to stay the night. He is clearly uncomfortable, but voices his consent. Aria figures something out for once in her life, and instead chooses to leave. Somebody give that girl a treat.
The most relevant aspect of the episode is Peter’s new lead in the race to reveal Jessica’s killer. The rat poison seemed like a safe bet, but the prescription medication is both accurate, and much more specific. Veronica also tells Spencer about how, soon after Alison disappeared, Jessica approached her and claimed she saw Spencer attack Alison that night. She even went to the police, but Peter managed to silence her by threatening to expose the secrets between their families (namely, Jason’s paternity. I think). Veronica herself is worried that Peter might have gone to silence her again this time, only permanently. I love it.
The other juicy morsel is the inner thigh scar that Alison dances around explaining. She pretends to freak out about it so the doctor will stop asking questions. When Hanna asks her privately, Alison evades the shit out of her.
What she instead focuses on is handing over a recording she secretly made of her pre-examination interview with the doctor. She has Hanna pass it around to the other Liars so they can keep their stories straight. If past seasons of PLL have taught me anything, it’s that any and all recordings, be they video or other, will be discovered, and used, by A. Or Mona, if she can get her shit together quickly enough.
Spencer implores Veronica to join her in her pursuit of discovering The Secret. Given that Peter mysteriously informs Spencer that Veronica will be staying at a spa for a bit, I’m gonna guess that she might be coming around. And Peter wouldn’t be too happy about that, natch.
Lucas displays his capacity for empathy. He breaks off from Mona because he doesn’t think Alison should have to go through any more shit. Yeah, we know she made up the kidnap story, but he doesn’t. It also makes Paige look bad. Which I’m okay with at the moment.
Best line of the episode goes to Spencer when she’s becoming concerned with Aria’s alarming paranoia: “You need to take a psychological selfie right now.” Oh. Dear. God.
Andrew lightly hits on Spencer, and she politely turns him down. Amicable.
Alison reads old posts from people celebrating her disappearance and possibility of being dead. I lol’d.
Alison is still haunted by the fact that Jessica saw someone apparently killing her on the night she disappeared, but never did anything about it. I’ll give her a pass on that one. That’s pretty upsetting. Sook on, baby.
Emily tells Alison that she will not be lying for her anymore (excluding keeping up appearances with the kidnapping story). I have absolutely no confidence in her sticking to that, but good for her.
Oh, and Hanna appears to be back to her Fashionistard ways. Why would you bother stealing this?