Pretty Little Liars Season 5 Episode 14 – TV Review
As I mentioned in my New Year’s Eve post, I don’t give a fuck about Pretty Little Liars anymore.
So with that in mind, here we go.
TL;DR The Liars successfully get Alison charged with Mona and Bethany’s murders; and Spencer is off the hook; Alison continues to proclaim her innocence; Grunwald comes to town to remind us just how much we hated Ravenswood.
At least this episode was more eventful than that sorry excuse for a Christmas special.
So things kick off with Mona’s belated funeral (with no body, of course). Alison doesn’t make any friends, least of all with Mona’s Mum, and the Liars are still convinced she’s A. Some new evidence (a statement from Jessica from two years ago that Wilden buried) puts Spencer at risk of further incrimination for Bethany’s murder, so the Liars band together to prove that Alison killed Mona, which should also throw enough shade for the cops to suspect her for Bethany’s murder, too. They achieve this by guilting Jason into revealing that Alison’s alibi for the night of Mona’s death was bullshit, which, combined with the letter the Liars found last episode, is enough to convince Roma to pin everything on Alison and have the charges against Spencer dropped. Liar-by-Liar subplots include:
Aria tries to console a grief-stricken Mike. She also gets hacking lessons from Caleb, because she suspects A might have a hand in all these college rejection letters she’s been getting (because you’re just so perfect, aren’t you, Aria?). Aria is later attacked by A (presumably Alison), and loses Mona’s laptop (which Caleb had been unable to hack into, anyway).
Emily deals with the disappointment of Paige’s departure, which she is unable to stop (mainly because Paige wants to go). She also hatches a quickly-abandoned scheme to plant Alison’s hair in Mona’s house for the cops to find. This leads her and Spencer to finding a hidden camera, instead.
Spencer both convinces Jason to sell out Alison, and gets the police to look at the hidden camera footage. It captured Mona being murdered by someone with long, blonde hair (though we don’t get to see their face), which is enough to convince Jason and the police that Ali dun did it, y’all. Also, Toby is now officially a Rosewood police officer.
And Hanna calls in Grunwald to use her pyschic powers to try to find Mona’s body. It pisses Caleb off, and is ineffective.
I wish I could muster the enthusiasm to really rip into PLL, but these days it just isn’t there.
Thank God Glee is back this week. That oughtta perk me up.
Why I hate this episode:
The Rosewood police are just the height of incompetence and conclusion-jumping. I’ll try to remember this from now on. I’ve often complained that the Liars should just go tell the police the truth about everything and that would fix their problems, but I think it’s official now that it probably wouldn’t help.
Aria’s insistence that A must be responsible for her college rejections is typical Aria selfishness. Not at all surprising, but definitely fucking ridiculous. How self-centred.
Ezra apparently owns the cafe now? Did we know that already? I have trouble keeping up. Also, why?
Caleb’s insistence that Aria learn how to hack, rather than having him do it for her, leaves her with Mona’s laptop in her possession. Which allows A to steal it from her. How pointless.
Emily does an airport dash to reach Paige before she leaves. God, have some originality. Some self-respect wouldn’t hurt, either.
How on Earth did A miss the enormous camera hiding in Mona’s vent?
Grunwald and her Ravenswood reminders can get the fuck out, please. I’m with Caleb on this one.
Toby looks absurd in his uniform.
Oh, and the shining moment of stupidity comes at the end. The Liars are satisfied that Alison is in jail and all their A problems are over. Then some random fireworks make an A shape in the sky, and they’re on edge agin. Seriously? What the fuck happened to this show?
But it’s not all bad:
A almost shoots Aria with a nail gun. It’s a small victory.
Mike, shockingly, is the saving grace of the episode. After a fruitless attempt to have Ezra bro-talk to him about his grief over Mona, Aria decides to have a proper sit-down with him later. She gives him the requisite flowery talk about how lovely Mona was, despite their differences. But Mike surprises her by expressing his frustation at everyone doing just that: speaking well of her only because she died. Maybe if they’d been more complimentary to her while she was alive, none of this would have ever happened. He’s got a point.
He gets all weepy-eyed, and Aria offers to have a talk with him later about the Mona he knew. She leaves the room, and we hear Mike full-on bawling off-screen. It was enough to melt a couple of pin-pricks of frost on my icy heart.
The Liars’ big scheme against Alison goes off impressively well. They achieve both their goals: put her under suspicion of Mona’s murder, and lead the cops to suspect her for Bethany’s murder (and they actually hand over the letter, instead of hiding it and waiting for A to inevitably swoop in and steal it).
Mona’s Mum’s epic bitch slap of Alison at the funeral was solid soap opera realness. It’s a shame the rest of the episode is so static.
Spencer’s bail is almost revoked because of a statement Jessica made two years ago about seeing Spencer in her yard that night with a blonde girl resembling Alison (Bethany). Wilden buried it, but Roma found it recently. It’s good to see Wilden still being a jerk from beyond the grave.
Aria gets rejected from college. I lol’d.
The Liars form a human wall to block Alison from fleeing her arrest after she realises the jig is up. Burn, bitch. Alison, naturally, proclaims her innocence. And that she has been protecting the Liars. So without her, they’re gonna get murdered next or something. If I didn’t know we’re already going to be forced through another two full seasons, I’d get my hopes up.
Jason turning on Alison was delicious.
Oh, and I wasn’t kidding about the heights of retardation that the A fireworks soar to. It’s almost Under the Dome levels of television ineptitude.