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SUMMER FINALE REVIEW: Pretty Little Liars “Now You See Me, Now You Don’t” S4, E12

Another summer finale and another big WOW moment.   And while in the moment I was wowed, I’m now skeptical.   Because the last big reveal of who “A” was, or at least who was part of the “A” team, turned out to be a fraud.   When Toby was revealed to be part of team “A” and working with Mona, the show completely back peddled on that and made Toby working undercover to bring “A” down.    Since the back peddle, I wasn’t buying it.    I think it was the writers reacting to their audience and the outcry that one of their favorite characters being written as a bad guy.    Now, maybe that’s not the case.    Maybe that was the plan all along. But like I said, I wasn’t buying it…..until this episode.   If it truly was the plan all along to make Toby work undercover and pull a fast one on us, it makes perfect sense since their plan was to reveal an even BIGGER jaw dropper of either who “A” is or who is on the “A” team…..Ezra Fitz!!!!   Now fair warning PLL writers, if you back peddle on this one too, I’m done watching your show, and I think you’ll risk losing many viewers because I think your fans are starting to lose some patience.

I’ve been frustrated with PLL lately.   I feel like we’ve been watching this show for 3 and 1/2 seasons and we’ve gotten absolutely nowhere.   We are no closer to finding out who “A” really is and why.   The girls keep having all these horrible things happen to them while never, ever wanting to get some help.  Their parents are never around (except for Hanna’s) and when they are around, they are completely clueless as to what is happening with their daughters.   I mean I know teenage girls can be moody and difficult (I used to be one of them) but what has been happening to these girls and the way they always walk around without any sense of happiness in their lives (see Emily) how do none of their parents ever think to push the issue and ask them what is going on?   And we’ve never really been let in on the secret as to WHY “A” is doing this to these girls.   What could they have done to this person to warrant this type of torture and torment?    That’s why we really need more answers than questions sooner than later.

So there were two big reveals in this episode…Ezra is “A”, or at least part of the team, and Allison is alive.   I’ve said since the first season that I think Allison is alive.   Whether or not that’s really true, I guess the show will confirm in the Halloween episode on Oct 22nd.   But I’ve always thought she was alive.  Although her being buried alive and reaching her hand out and the sorority lady just happens to be there and see it….yeah, I don’t know about that.

I know there are a lot of theories going around about both of these reveals.    And I’m going to go out on a crazy limb based on every episode I’ve watched, everything I’ve read and seen and say that not only is Ezra “A” but so is Aria.   I’ll let that one sink in for a minute.   If I remember correctly, the first episode of the series shows that Aria spent a year oversees.   So we have no idea what Aria was doing while she was away.   The reason we were given that she was away was because of finding out about her father cheating on her mother.  And maybe that’s true.   But if she was an angry Aria at that time, could she have met Ezra at that point?    If Ezra’s motive for being “A” is because he had a relationship with Ali, could Aria have known about it and therefore knew about Ezra or even knew him sooner?   Could they be working together this whole time?    If Ezria is the endgame (according to one of the writers) then it would make sense that they would be working together.   That way the relationship really was never fake, the way fans fear, because they’re working together.  I’ve always thought that one of the Liars was really “A” or part of the “A” team, I just wasn’t sure who.  I’ve had my suspicions about Aria before but now with this Ezra reveal (if it sticks) I’m thinking even more strongly that she’s part of the whole thing and has been from the beginning.   I told you it was crazy!

While the show has been frustrating me lately, I will give them this, they sure know how to do a finale.   However, if this was another red herring and there is a perfectly reasonable explanation for what we saw, I’m done.  I really am.  Because I’m tired of the false leads.   Do it once (with Toby), ok fine.   I don’t like it, but I can deal with it.   You do it again, with Ezra, I’m done.    Because nothing else you do moving forward will carry any weight.  I won’t trust you as a show or writing team.  I’m ok with mystery and storylines that keep me on my toes and guessing as to what is going to happen and who’s behind it.   But when it keeps happening in the realm of “ha ha, gotcha…it wasn’t what we led you to believe” then I’m bored.  I think you keep your audience engaged by at least answering SOME questions or by giving some sense of direction.   If it’s always questions and more questions and more misdirection, then you lose.   At least, you lose me.

So what do you think?   Is Ezra “A”?    Is Allison really alive?   Are you as frustrated as me or are you completely fine with the direction of the show?

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RECAP & REVIEW: Pretty Little Liars “Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Inferno” S3 E17

Poor Spencer.  That girl is going right off the deep end.  She just walked around this episode with all kinds of crazy in her eyes.   But can you blame her?   Spencer, for all her faults, has really been the brains behind tracking down who “A” is and how to stop him/her/them.  I’ve given her grief over the seasons because for being the smart one, she sure handled many issues very stupidly.  But her passion for wanting to protect the people she cares about was never a question.  And in my opinion, she’s been the most driven about taking this enemy down.  It’s just her personality.  She doesn’t do things half way.  She jumps in the deep end with both feet, legs, arms, head, everything.  She’s like that with school, family, friends, and her love life.  When Spencer wants something or someone, she’s all in and that’s how she was with Toby.  So you can imagine her devastation to learn that the person she has grown to love and give herself completely to, is none other than a member of the “A” team.  Between this episode and the last one, Troian Bellisario has done a fantastic job at showing her range of emotions.  From shock to disbelief.  From sadness to anger.  From utter betrayal to determination.  She has run the gamut in basically 24 hours.  The scene where she’s in her car about to meet someone and she’s trying like hell to pull herself together, perfectly sums up all her feelings.  She knows she needs to be strong, to get past this, and to get back to her end game of taking down “A.”  But she now realizes that in doing that, it also means, taking down the man she loves.  I have to say, I’m looking forward to that showdown!

Ezra finally learns the truth.  After going round and round of “I’ll tell him, I can’t tell him” the obvious happens…Ezra finds out from someone else.  Knowing Spencer’s in a fragile state, “Aria” sends a text to Spencer saying that she told Ezra and that he broke up with her and to come and see her in the park.  Spencer goes right over and sees Ezra in the park.   Seeing how she’s in a really pissy mode these days, she rips Ezra a new one about breaking up with Aria (that whole jumping in with both feet rears its ugly head again.)  Ezra has no idea what she’s talking about.  And even though I knew it was coming, I knew she was going to spill the beans, when it happened, I still gasped out loud.   I was heartbroken for Spencer when she realized what just happened.  I mean really, how much more pain can this girl take?  She runs off and Ezra immediately goes to Aria at school to confront her.  I found it funny that Ezra wanted to have this public discussion in front of everyone, yet it was Aria that asked them to be mature walk somewhere privately to talk.  After Ezra gives Aria  a verbal beat down, he takes off and Aria gets a text from “A” saying she needed a jump-start.

Later, they meet up and Ezra is packing his car.  He’s off to meet his son.  He tells Aria that he spoke with Maggie and she explained that she asked Aria to keep this secret putting her in an unfair position.   And even though Ezra forgave her, you could tell he was still bothered by what happened.  When he goes to leave Aria asks when he’ll be back and if she can call him.  His back is to her and he starts to cry.  He abruptly turns around, kisses her on the head and says he’ll be in touch.   Did, he just break up with her?  I think Aria is wondering the same thing as well.  Maybe Ezra finally realized that dating someone in high school while you’re a grown adult, and now a father, isn’t appropriate and it’s time to grow up, get a real relationship, one that doesn’t break the law, and move on.   Maybe he realized that by having a child now, put his 17-year-old girlfriend in a position she’s just too young to have to deal with.  Not to mention his kid is 7-8 years old.  Hell in 15 years, Aria could date the kid.   In all seriousness, it’s unfair to Aria.  She’s 17.  She does need to be dealing with a boyfriend who has a child with his ex.  SHE’S 17!!!!!!!  I say, let Ezra go be a dad, get a job, and start a new life and let Aria start hers again…with someone more age appropriate.

Aria goes to see Spencer and Aria handles herself like a real pro.  She would have every right to lay into Spencer but she didn’t.  One, because she knew it wasn’t her fault and that she was set up and two, because she knows something is going on with her right now.  While Aria wants to give her friend some space and let her work through whatever she’s dealing with, she was pretty perturbed that Spencer didn’t at least ask how she was doing.   I don’t blame her.  Being supportive of your friend when they are obviously going through something is one thing and letting her deal with it in her own way is fine.  But seeing that you are responsible for destroying your BFF’s relationship, couldn’t you put aside your demons for one second and be there for her?  I know it wasn’t really Spencer’s fault because she was set up, but ultimately, it was still her that let the cat out of the bag.  So for 5 minutes, show a little remorse and compassion to your friend who is also going through something pretty upsetting for her.

There was another big reveal in that we learned Allison may have been pregnant when she was killed.  Now there’s something I didn’t see coming but should have.  So now the question is, who’s the “hottie at the beach,” did that person impregnate Allison, and was she killed because of it by this person?  We know this all happened down in Cape May because of the picture Emily found.  Ironically, later in the police station where Emily is visiting her mom and Hanna is there for underage drinking, they see a picture of the creepy detective, with friends of his, down in Cape May.   Now I know this is a TV show.  I get it.  And connections need to be made. But really?  If you’re from the Philadelphia area, chances are you spend all if not some part of your summer down the Jersey Shore.  There are 5-6 million people in the Philadelphia area.  I would venture to say that at least 1-2 million head to the shore every summer.   A fair amount of those people, head to Cape May.  Not to mention all the people outside the Philly area that flock to Cape May every year.   So it could be anyone.  Because I would guess, and I’m going out on a limb here, that there are many “hotties at the beach” in the summer time.   I’m just saying.  But PLL is very good at bringing people back into the picture and making you question them.  But what is it with the writers putting adult men with high school girls?   ENOUGH ALREADY!!!!

I wonder when Spencer is going to tell the girls about Toby.  How long will she hang onto that juicy detail.  If “A” is as dangerous as we’re all led to believe, then she owes it to her friends to tell them soon, especially Emily who’s still pretty good friends with Toby.  But she’s hired, what I assume is a private detective to do some digging around.  So I think it’s just a matter of time at this point.  Hell, it’s still only been 24 hours since this all came to light so I’m willing to cut her a break.  But at some point, she’s got to let them know.

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2013 in ABC Family, Recaps and Reviews

 

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SEASON FINALE RECAP & REVIEW: Pretty Little Liars “The Lady Killers” S3 E12

I’ll tell you what, the networks, writers, and casts have really brought it with summer season finales.  Another awesome finale last night although I must admit nothing was surprising.   But I don’t care, because I still enjoyed it immensely!

We start the episode seeing Aria and Spencer comforting Hanna as she is bawling her eyes out while seeing a body on a gurney and Emily is covered in blood looking glazed as she’s talking to the cop about knowing the deceased.  I had seen the promo picture of that shot all over the web so my initial thoughts were that something happens to either Caleb or her mom.  After the opening sequence it was pretty clear that something happens to Caleb.   I was hoping it wasn’t that he was killed but we’d have to wait to find out for sure.

The episodes leading up to last night’s finale and all last night, the girls (especially Spencer) felt that Paige was a member of the “A” clique.  I’ve talked about this before and I’m going to say this again…why do the girls always listen to what Spencer says about who’s guilty?  I know she’s the smartest girl in the group but she’s been completely off every time she thinks she knows who “A” is.  First it was Toby, then it was Jenna, then it was Garrett, then it was Jason, now it’s Paige.   Each time she was proven wrong.  So how many times does Spencer have to be wrong before one of the girls steps up and says “Hey Spence, maybe you should take a backseat this time on the detective front because you’ve been wrong every time!”  Seriously, for someone so smart, she’s been very gullible throughout this whole thing.  Did it NEVER cross her mind (since “A” always seems to be 5 steps ahead of the girls) that “A” knew they were onto Paige and that “A” possibly planted that earring in Paige’s purse?  Really?  Not one person thought to bring that up?   Spencer sees evidence and BOOM they’re guilty.  She’d make a lousy detective or prosecutor.

I like the character of Paige but I don’t like her with Emily.  Actually I don’t like anyone with Emily because Shay Mitchell isn’t doing a good enough job (in my opinion) convincing me she’s into girls.  Not to mention, Emily is my least favorite character so that probably has something to do with it as well.  About three episodes ago, the spin of the story was setting Paige up to be part of the “A” team…which is always an indication to me that it’s a red herring designed to turn attention away from the true culprit.  As it turns out, not only did Paige have nothing to do with “A” but she became a victim herself, just not one of “A”‘s victims.

The other person we all knew was up to no good was Nate.  Since he came to town, I never believed anything he was saying and he never rubbed me the right way.  I wasn’t quite sure how he was connected to “A” but that’s where I was completely wrong…and I’m glad.  Not every story line has to do with “A” and I’m happy the writers made this separate from that.  Nate was actually named Linden and wasn’t Maya’s cousin….he was her stalker.  He didn’t like Emily and Maya together and he ended up being her killer.  He came after Emily because he felt Emily took Maya away from him.  So now he was going to take someone away from her.  He opens up his closet and we see Paige bound and gaged and looking completely frightened.  Nate/Linden brings Paige out of the closet (pardon the pun) and puts her on the couch next to Emily where he keeps threatening to kill her, just like a James Bond movie.  When he goes to get her, Emily snags a phone.  But as this is playing out, the writers pull a Silence of the Lambs moment.  We see Hanna, Aria, and Spencer walking up to the steps of a cabin and as they walk on the porch, it creaks.  Flash to inside where Nate/Linden hears a noise and goes to check it out.  A door bursts open but the girls are at a different cabin and Emily has run out with the phone (leaving Paige bound and gaged still behind.)  I know Emily got a lot of grief about leaving Paige behind. But I think what she was trying to do was get to a spot where she can get a cell signal and place a call to 911. I think she also assumed that Nate/linden would follow her so Paige was probably safe.  I ripped her more for running to the top of a lighthouse where she has no escape and nowhere to go.  I know she was looking for a signal but you don’t necessarily need high ground for a signal and putting yourself at the top of a lighthouse, puts you in a much more dangerous position!  But whatever.  Nate/Linden tracks Emily to the top of the lighthouse and as she dials 911 and gets an operator, Nate/Linden attacks her.  A major struggle ensues and Emily ends up stabbing Nate/Linden to death.  Meanwhile, Caleb comes charging up the lighthouse with his gun.  To back up, when the girls and Caleb decide to go after Emily, they aren’t 100% sure where she is at.  They have a name of a cabin but there are two locations with the same name.  The girls go to the one location (the wrong one) and Caleb goes to the other (the right one) which is why he was there.  As Emily hugs Caleb the camera flashes to the outside of the lighthouse and we hear a gun shot.

Now we have come full circle to the beginning of the episode where we see Hanna crying her eyes out and we see Caleb coming out on a gurney with a gun shot wound.  The second gurney comes out with Nate/Linden’s body. Emily and Paige are both talking to the police about what happened.  Now, the way Caleb was shot is bothering me.  I’m probably nit-picking but I thought it was weak.  We knew something was going to happen with Caleb the minute we see the gun in Hanna’s room (and tie that into the opening scene, you knew Caleb was getting shot.)  Hanna was freaking out about the gun and the danger of guns, so it was bound to happen that Caleb gets shot.   We are all to assume it was Nate/Linden that shot him right?  I mean Emily was hugging him and why the hell would she shoot him so it only made sense that it was Nate/Linden.  Again, as soon as Caleb put the gun down…he was getting shot.  So it didn’t have the impact it could have because it was so obvious this was going to happen.  Plus, Nate/Linden looked pretty dead.  I guess he woke up, tried to shoot Emily, shot Caleb instead and then really died.  I guess I can go with that.   Hopefully Caleb will be alright because I love that character and I love him with Hanna….best couple on the show!  I have a feeling he’ll be just fine.

But enough with all that, let’s get to the part of the show that had everyone on Twitter freaking out (and that’s putting it mildly.)  For the last month, PLL has been pumping it’s season finale at the BetrAyal.  Meaning someone we have grown to love and trust (so have the girls) is going to be revealed as part of the “A” team.  Not to toot my own horn (but I’m going to) I totally called it!!!  If you listen to my podcast from last week, I said my guess was either Melissa or Toby.  I eliminated Melissa because no one likes her and it wouldn’t be that big of a reveal.  So I went with Toby.  Toby made the most sense because of many reasons.  First, the girls were leery of him early in series but proved himself to be innocent and a loyal friend.  He and Spencer fell in love and he was able to gain her trust and as a result, all of the Liars’ trust.  He and Emily had always been good friends so she always stood by him.  Plus, Toby would be gone for long stretches of time where no one knew where he was or what he was doing.  Yeah he told Spencer he was “working” in Bucks County, but we didn’t know that for sure.  There were many signs pointing to Toby for a while.  Even going back to last season.  And that would be more of a tug on the heart-strings because of all the Toby/Spencer shippers out there and because he had become such a likable character.   So it was no surprise that Toby was on the “A” team but it still made the reveal brutal for many people.

The big question is, is he really part of the “A” team or is it all a rouse?  Is he posing as part of the “A” team to take them down from the inside or has he really been against the girls from the very beginning?   Having Toby revealed to us but not the girls brings a very interesting layer to future storytelling that quite frankly, the show needed.  It was starting to get a bit stale and now with this reveal, a burst of life has just been interjected into the series and I can’t wait to see where it goes from here!

I have to say, even though Spencer drives me crazy, I am absolutely heartbroken for her.  I have really come to like her character and her feistiness.  When she finds this out Toby is part of the “A” team, she seriously may spontaneously combust!   And if I’m not mistaken, she’s the first Liar to lose her virginity correct?  If I’m wrong, please let me know.  But Em’s a virgin, Hanna’s a virgin.  I’m pretty sure Aria still is.  How apropos that the first Liar to lose her virginity, loses it to an “A” member.  Yikes!

I’ve already got October 23rd on my calendar for the Halloween episode and then we have to wait until January for the back 12.   I hate having to wait that long but I think I can suffer through it.

Other Thoughts From the Episode:

  • Garrett completely creeped me out when he left the jail.  The smirk he gave the girls when he was released because Nate/Linden was found out to be Maya’s killer, was chilling.  Is Garrett just a creep or is he involved somehow?
  • Maggie and Aria go toe to toe over telling Ezra about his son.  I love Aria.  But she has a lot of guts to give Maggie grief about lying to Ezra.  I mean of ALL the Liars, Aria should NEVER call anyone out for lying.  As Maggie told her, there is more to this story and she has no right to blow the whistle on this situation without knowing why she is doing what she is doing.  And she can easily get out of being in trouble with Ezra for not telling him.  By explaining to him that it’s not her news to tell.   Tell him the situation and if he doesn’t understand, then that’s his problem.  Plus, she’s a teenager.  Can you really hold her accountable for adult actions when she’s just a kid?   Maybe Ezra should date someone his own age if he wants a situation handled differently.    But you all know how I feel about that!
  • Where was the creepy pastor?  I know that guy is up to no good.  I don’t know how he connects or why, I just know he’s bad news.  Ashley better be very careful.  I guess we’ll revisit that in the second half of Season 3.

What did you think of the finale?  Were you devastated it was Toby as the reveal?  Did you call it too?  Did you not care?   Sound off below!

 

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