Hello and welcome to a new era of Pretty Little Liars recaps! I’m your new (and fourth and hopefully final) host, Intern Grace, and every week I’ll be recapping the shit outta this show for you to read with your eyeballs! Some things you should know before we dive right into this three-episode recap are that 1) I have been watching this show from the beginning and 2) I kind of enjoy it? I don’t not like the show. I think it’s campy, and I enjoy how intentional parts of the script seems to be, especially with regard to obvious visual symbolism. There are plenty of things I don’t particularly enjoy about it, but there will be lots of time to discuss it later! For now, ONWARD!
Episode 506: Run, Ali, Run
When we last left the liars, Toby’s house was exploding! Ahh!
Toby runs into the house ala Lassie as the liars receive a message from A asking if those bitches missed her. Spoiler alert: They did not. A would be impossible to miss, at this point, given that we’ve now officially been talking about A for more than ONE HUNDRED EPISODES. Christ on a fucking cracker. Veronica Mars woulda had this guy within half a season, is all I’m saying.
Anyway, Toby’s house explodes again, but after some quick opening credits, we learn that “no one was inside the house, thank god,” which is good news for Spencer but bad news for those of us who want a meaningful and lasting plot point.
Later (I guess), Ali says “guys, what does this mean?” and holds up her phone with the “did you miss me” text because she is new to this game.
The gang comes to the conclusion that Shana couldn’t have been A, which we already knew because there are still two and a half seasons of this show left. Aria continues to feel sad inside because she killed Shana and won’t talk to the police about it for some reason, despite being a young, pretty, straight, financially stable, white woman who acted in self-defense.
Then we flutter our butterfly wings and fly an indeterminate amount of time over to the cafe where Hanna runs into Ravenswood Caleb. (Ravenswood Caleb is distinguishable from Rosewood Caleb by his Inigo Montoya-facial hair and the lingering smell of a failed spin-off.) Caleb plot-expositions that the police determined that Toby’s house exploded because of a natural gas leak. Hanna plot-expositions that she hooked up with other people while Caleb was in Ravenswood. They are both very grumpy.
Smash over to Aria and Ezra hanging out in Ezra’s apartment as Aria continues on her season-long panic about killing Shana. Ezra is ignoring her, however, in pursuit of his dream to be a teen detective as he looks for a connection between Ali’s mom and Bethany Young (the girl buried in what they thought was Ali’s grave).
Ezra: Mrs. D was on the board at Radley Sanitarium. Bethany was a patient there. Bethany was buried in her yard in the same spot Ali was buried.
Aria: You think A killed Bethany and Mrs. D.
Ezra: That would be a connection.
Aria skitters off to school because she is a child while Ezra stays and continues researching because he is an adult. He assures her that they’re “going to get through this,” and I can only assume he’s talking about their relationship that still eeks me out.
Sidesweep over to Spencer, dressed as an extra on Deadliest Catch, grabbing some books from her bedroom. She’s interrupted by her dad who wants to know why she and her mom are living in a hotel.
Spencer plot-expositions that they know he lied about where he was when Mrs. D died and that she knows he takes the kind of pills that killed her! Ahh! Spencer asks where he and Melissa were the night Mrs. D died, and then WHOOOOOOSH we’re in the cafeteria where Spencer is telling Aria that he and Melissa went somewhere to talk that night but he didn’t elaborate at all.
Aria gets a phone call from Ezra for no reason, and Spencer immediately knows they hooked up again. They sing “A Boy Like That” from West Side Story until the other liars join them at the plastics table.
Spencer plot-expositions the group that Toby is in the hospital, but before we can get an even bigger helping of telling-not-showing, it’s time for more Tyra Mail! This time, it’s a special video for Ali of A burying her mom! Wowza.
Spinning through space and time, the liars are chilling out, maxing, relaxing all cool in Hanna’s (?) kitchen, talking about scissoring techniques. JK, obviously they’re still talking about A! Spencer is upset because any one of her family members could be A at this point, but Ali is MORE upset because, um, A is a psychopath who is targeting her specifically.
Ali says she wants to skip town again, but Emily says no because all of her girlfriends keep leaving or dying. Maybe the last two seasons of the show will entail Emily solving the mystery of why all the queer women of color in Rosewood keep getting murdered! Anyhow, the liars tell Ali she can’t leave because the whole world is watching her, which freaks her out because running away is all she knows.
Disco dancing across town, Spencer hangs out in the Radley waiting room, presumably to gather more intel on Lonely Murdered Girl Bethany Young. After a near-miss with Detective River Song and co., Spencer tries to talk to Lamb about Lonely Murdered Girl Bethany Young, but he only says he can’t talk about it.
Somewhere else in the universe, Hannah and Ali are walking downstairs together, presumably after having steamy PG-rated sex. The doorbell rings, and Ali jumps out of her skin. Don’t worry, Ali, it’s just Travis, here to imply that he hates it when Hanna drinks and to have this conversation:
She kisses him and then rolls her eyes when he walks away, which is surely a good omen for their relationship. Back inside, Hanna catches Ali on the phone making plans to run away again. Hanna protests, but then this happens:
Hanna: Ali, wait.
Ali: I’ve made my decision, Hanna.
Hanna: So have I. I want to help you.
Meanwhile, down on the farm, Aria and Ezra are digging through his files for information on Lonely Murdered Girl Bethany Young. Blissfully, “digging through his files” is not a euphemism, as Aria tells him they CAN’T GET BACK TOGETHER, OMG. Clearly, they are about to get back together. But before they can process their feelings anymore, Detective River Song shows up! Aria hides elsewhere in the apartment before the detective can see her.
The detective questions Ezra about Shana because the police aren’t as dumb as our protagonists think they are. He denies knowing anything and feigns surprise when she asks if it’s a coincidence that he was shot the night before Shana was and that Shana was found in a theater his family owns. They reenact this conversation from episode 503:
And then the detective notices Aria’s stuff sitting on a table and leaves without mentioning it. Wheeeeeeeeee.
Elsewhere, Paige is toweling off from a swim when Emily springs around a locker at her like a stunt in a cheap carnival dark ride. Emily demands the list of people conspiring with Mona, citing “they probs blew up Toby’s house” and “stop being mean” as reasons. Paige is resistant and says Ali is the woooooooooooorst, but Emily tells Paige that she’ll feel bad if something terrible actually does happen to Ali.
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Wow, Grace. I *so* appreciate your mega-review. I’ve stayed tuned in to PLL without knowing *why* exactly—other than the fact that I seem helplessly attached to its Emily-centric gay content. Whatever. In any case, your review shows me that I’m not the only gay girl who *does* follow the show. That said…I must say that PLL has become really hard to actually *follow*, plot-point-wise. There are just a lot of holes, ya know? Still, I’m weirdly….intrigued. So thanks for this review!
lol times one million. thanks Grace!
Sometimes I feel like I’m just swooning over Emily’s perfect hair and clothes because so many things irritate me.
Zack’s evolution into a total creep seems completely unnecessary and forced. Like, no subtlety from this one, blah. Also ,Sydney is wonderfully shady as hell so I’m still counting her as a queer girl without canon confirmation.
PLL 508 “Scream for Me” or “The Liars Show You How Rape Culture Operates And It’s So Sad”
As someone who hasn’t seen the show in years and just reads the recaps here I salute this 6 page epic. Particularly the captions. Look forward to the next one.
Still hoping for crazy randomly inserted magic just to add to the campy drama.
totally assumed Caleb was high high high with some serious munchies with the whole three brownies things.
THIS WAS AN AMAZING RECAP!!! I can’t believe how thorough, but still really funny, it was. Especially given that we had three whole episodes to get through. Probably the best PLL recap I’ve read on Autostraddle in a while. I’m looking froward to the next one. Thanks for this up, Forever Intern Grace.
Welcome to PLL recapping Grace! I was wondering what was up with the recap situtaion. This was totally awesome and hilarious! Great job!
Jeez, this Ali stuff is hard to take! Watching Emily turn into a dope after a couple years of being so strong and confident in herself is very painful for me. I’m really hoping things start getting better soon or else I don’t know how much more I can take. :(
Thanks for the hilarious recap. It doesn’t hurt that I love a well-placed Sondheim joke. Glad to have you writing these! The captions were particularly on point.
Your captions are hilarious. I died at the Sweeney Todd reference and gigglesnorted at ANGSTY CHOIR ROOM. I don’t even watch this show anymore. Did they recast Caleb? Or is it the haircut?
OMG Sweeney Todd for all the win!
I miss lesbian Caleb – she was supportive, had much better hair, and actually cared about her girlfriend :(