Pretty Little Liars Episode 202 “Recap”: The Goodbye Look It’s a Lesbian

Tuesday night on Pretty Little Liars, we spent at least thirty years of what were most likely the brightest, bestest, most beautiful television-watching years of my fleeting youth, watching Aria think about Ezra. Aria waited for Ezra. Aria was bathed in a giant swath of car-sheen-twilight radiating from Ezra. Aria walked around thinking about Ezra, and Aria talked about Ezra, and when she wasn’t talking about/waiting for Ezra, she was in the parking lot intensely kissing Ezra while wearing the most jailbaitish outfit of all time. Kissing him with TONGUE.

In between all of that hootenanny, there were certain discoveries made relating to the Alleged Death of Ian and Allison’s brother returned played by a new actor. Spencer, who was particularly Nancy Drewish this week, dashed around hunting for clues and also for Toby, her forbidden love.

from all the way up here you can see one tree hill

I think Hanna’s Dad came back and she re-friended Mona but I used those scenes to make myself a grilled cheese.

fine but no more naked sleepovers, ok?

But what happened with Emily the lesbian? Well! Emily’s Mom, who is suddenly mega-hot, still insists jetting off to Texas and leaving Emily’s multiple paramours and assorted murder mysteries is a fantastic plan.

You can't just go from Mean Mom to Hot Mom overnight, it's confusing

In fact, they’ve already secured a buyer for the house so Emily should start packing. You know. “Packing.” Emily slides over to her laptop to check out what Babeland’s stocking for whatever holiday is around the corner in Rosewood’s Eternal School Year, only to discover…

It’s true, we’re sold out of Autostraddle t-shirts. Also, Emily’s hard-drive is wiped clean, it was probably A., who stopped in for a real estate tour at the end of last week’s episode.

Even Spencer, who’s got all her organs neatly organized underneath a ferocious giant belt object (which nicely compliments her Earth-Toned clown sleeves), doesn’t know what to do about the hard drive erasure.

Emily’s the only one with the videos on her computer! Spencer reminds us. This is like when Lez Girls got stolen and you didn’t know if you should be sad because it makes people mad or happy because you won’t have to see any more clips of it for the rest of the season.

spencer, you were right, i should've gotten a mac

Oh! I almost forgot! Despite the fact that the Fantastic Foursome have been prohibited by their alternative therapist from hanging out with/talking to each other, they continue hanging out with each other although they do bookend each conversation with a brief chat regarding how they shouldn’t chat.

This is most tragic in the lunchroom, when the four girls dramatically enter the lunchroom and collectively conclude that they must sit at separate tables in order to evade the psychic judgment of the psychiatrist who wasn’t on payroll this episode.

try the pudding. it's to die for. - A.

This separate tables nonsense definitely helps them overcome their collective reputations as paranoid lunatics and definitely makes them look like privileged entitled table hogs.

Later that day/week, Emily is gliding through the pristine waters of the Rosewood pool like a guppie who sleeps with other guppies.

I'm so glad i switched to tampax

Paige, Emily’s swim team companion who Emily was sorta/kinda dating last we checked in with the lesbian storyline, is oddly nowhere to be seen.

But another hot femme wants to take Emily to a movie! Remember her, from last time? It’s okay, I’m sure she’ll vanish shortly, like everyone who kisses Emily eventually does.

omg emily you look so good when you're wet

Emily’s like, but um, I’m moving to Texas! And Samara’s like, um, so what are you saying, you don’t want to start something right now so that we can both be sad on our inevitable shared tumblr in two months when we’re in love and you’re in Dallas, crying your eyes out at a Rodeo?

i mean since when have lesbians listened to logic when jumping into a relationship, yannow?

Silly me, Emily realizes. Let’s go to the movies!

Oh ALSO! Look who’s also at the game — it’s a SCOUT from Bigtownhappyswim University !

He says Emily could be looking at a scholarship, but not if she leaves this Town of Death and Lies. Emily’s like, “Oh nah it’s not set in stone,” because I mean, she’s about to go to a movie with this girl, soooo they’ll probs move in together next week.

my, what significant breasts you have

So someone broke into the Fields’ garage and stole some camping equipment, and someone broke into someone else’s house too, and would Emily, she with the sketchy friends and homosexual lovers, know who this could be? OF COURSE NOT EMILY HAS HER COMPUTER TO WORRY ABOUT.

i'm gonna toss all these "rainbow high" books mmk?

On account of the Gestapo and Communist China, Emily’s Mom is taking Emily’s phone away to ensure Emily can’t communicate with the Bad News Bears (Aria/Hanna/Spencer), which is really honestly quite horrifically invasive and inappropriate although maybe I’d feel differently if Shay Mitchell wasn’t so obviously 24 years old.

sexting, mom. it's a thing.

Emily’s Mom will stop at NOTHING to limit Emily’s social interactions. No lesbian friends, no lesbian girlfriends, no straight friends, you know what fuck it let’s just get the hell out of town and get you into homeschool.

When Spencer brings poisoned brownies to Allison’s brother to dig for info about Ian’s whereabouts, she has a flashback! Emily is in the flashback, see:

what, it's just a polo shirt!

allison look at me allison look at me allison looook

The best part of the flashbacks is how all four of the girls seem just as in love with Allison as Emily does. Anyhow, LET’S GO TO THE POOL!

The Danby Recruiter Scout is back again for more Emily, unlike her ex-girlfriends. She assures him she’ll stay at Rosewood and he says nice things about her getting a scholarship and Emily gets her hopes all up like she does.

look anyone who swims like you and still keeps her hair that shiny is a winner

Emily’s overall earnestness about college and life and love and How These Things Work despite murder and death and secrets and lies and Texas is in Adorable Overdrive this week. She asks Mom if Mom could unpack the two boxes of books she’s been glancing at and stick around if it meant Emily would get a full ride to college.

mom there are so many hot girls here tho

And Mom says… quite possibly yes!

well everyone in this booklet looks very straight

Butttt she’d like a commitment from Damby Panby University in writing before they consider reneging on a real estate contract and all that talking of packing.

Emily cannot leave this town without vadgeblasting at least one of the smokin’ hot chicks who keep landing in her lap hoping for a journey up her various billowy shirtfrocks.

Starting with…

this is the same movie theater they went to in saved by the bell

Emily & Samara are on the “movie theater” set with other extras. This set reminds Emily of Maya, just like falling off her bike in the rain reminds her of Paige and going to school reminds her of Allison and lying on her bed reminds her of Maya.

when the lights go down, i'm probably going to touch you between the legs

Samara notices Emily’s preoccupation with the set and asks if she’s been there before — these girls aren’t wasting any time — LET’S TALK ABOUT OUR EXES! Except Samara’s ex isn’t an ex, she’s something else. Is Maya dead? Like really Emily talks about her like they broke up but they didn’t, it’s just that Maya went to ex-gay camp and never came back! Why is everyone obsessed with Allison when Maya’s also missing.

omg it's a monkey this time instead of a baby!!! LOL!

Before Samara can yawn and sling her arm around Emily or Emily can get scared and leap onto Samara’s lap or either one of them could get stabbed in a bathroom stall, the scene ends. If this was The Real L Word, they would’ve been naked from the get-go and subsequently be scissoring with strap-ons coming out of their ears.

Or something like this:

LOL boys

Emily, who again, for a college-bound Person of Interest Champion Athlete seems overwhelmingly naive about the college admissions process (but then again this is teevee where everyone ends up at “California University”) asks Scouty McScouterson if he could put in writing that she’ll be guaranteed a big fat scholarship if she stays here instead of Texas.

let's be real you're way too old for college

Of course he can’t give her a promise, but he can give her an “I’m very interested” letter. Emily will take it. She will take what she can get.

Hopefully next week Emily will get some action and decide to stay in Rosewood so she can spend more time talking to her friends about not talking to her friends.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Are you concerned about Maya’s health/well-being because I am.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3213 articles for us.


  1. I, for one, was thoroughly entertained by the file names on all of the pictures. ‘Hand tuck must be a lesbian’ indeed.

    • I went back and looked at all the file names because of your comment and they’re hilarious! A+

  2. Riese, you should give the Hannah/Mona scene another watch. If one of the 4 main characters was not already a lesbian, fans would be asking if they are going to go there with Hannah and Mona. It dripped with sexual undertones. Now I am going to go watch it again!

    As for Emily, she has game in her own shy, doe eyed way.

    • to be honest I sort of had to phone it in this week because I was so ridiculously busy with other things and burned out from doing The Real L Word recap, which I was literally finishing as I was watching this episode. Sorry…

    • I really, honestly thought they were going to make out in that scene in the coffee shop.
      I believe Spencer is the true lesbian of this TV show. I’m just not buying it with Shay Mitchell.

  3. You skipped Hannah and Mona? Hanna and Mona are gayer than a U-Haul full of rescued dogs.

  4. All I noticed this week about Mona was that she suddenly looks much, much older than the other actors. Is this her matronly red lipstick creating an optical illusion? Or is the actor who plays Mona in the same age range as the actor who plays Maya? Oh these kids!

  5. I just want a special episode about how they do their hair. Especially when Aria was leaping around school to find her teacher to publicly make up/out with her hair was literally GLISTENING. I couldn’t even be annoyed with how stupid the scene was because her hair was so so so pretty.

    • I agree – last season (or whatever) there was just something about her I didn’t like, maybe it was her face, maybe she somehow looked like she should be/has been on Seventh Heaven which I do not watch, maybe it’s her name. Somehow both Samara and Emily’s Mom are more attractive this time, though. I don’t know. I feel like it’s better makeup for Emily’s mom and better angles for Samara, maybe.

    • Yeah, I’m not feeling the Emily/Samara thing either. Samara is just kinda blah, so far.

      Did anyone else think the dog was going to become A’s latest victim? Or am I just a pessimist?

      • I was literally screaming at the screen “don’t kill the puppy! don’t kill the puppy! oh my God A is going to caress that puppy and then break its neck! don’t kill the– oh, it’s over.”

  6. My dad works with cardboard boxes. I think that’s an extremely disparaging statement to make towards cardboard boxes.

  7. “…just like falling off her bike in the rain reminds her of Paige.”

    And talking about window seats, nearly drowning, and singing Pink in the bar from “Road House” reminds her of Paige, too.

    Do we miss Paige? Oddly enough, I do.

  8. “But another hot femme wants to take Emily to a movie! Remember her, from last time? It’s okay, I’m sure she’ll vanish shortly, like everyone who kisses Emily eventually does.”
    FOR REAL. Not that I cared too much about Paige…I never understood how a relationship could evolve from attempted murder into making out to Passion Pit in five seconds flat. Well, I guess there was that awkward karaoke scene…

  9. Can they just pull a Dana Fairbanks with Aria already?
    She wastes valuable screen time that would be better spent on fresh felonies for Hanna’s mother or Emily’s next disposable romantic interest or Spencer’s naked back. If A kills anyone it better be Aria.

  10. Best part of the recap: “Try the pudding. It’s to die for. – A.” Oh how I wish A would just fuck with them like that. It would be so awesome. Remember when D.J. Tanner made Stephanie Tanner think she made her poison brownies?

  11. I am less confused about “where is Maya” and more confused about “how is Jason living in that house when Maya’s parents should still be living there.” Such a Rear Window moment with that dog, WHAT was it trying to dig up?

    I think that saying you missed the parts with Hanna and Mona because you were making grilled cheese was more amusing/informative than it would have been had you actually watched it, so. Keep up the good work. :)

    • Dude, you’re totally right.
      Where was Jason staying before when that other actor was playing him?

  12. My favorite part of this episode was when Emily’s mom informed Emily of the fact that A evidently stole some camping gear from their garage. I think A is crumbling under the pressure of being an unbeatable mastermind and ze is going to start just doing annoying shit to mess with the girls’ lives, like misplacing things, or leaving dirty dishes in the sink, or eating crumbly food in their beds, etc., you know, just being a general nuisance.

    I was really on board with Emily’s lesbianism but it’s hard to be emotionally invested in her love life when she seems to have such little investment in her own. Also it just makes me retroactively jealous, like, what, three girlfriends in one year of high school? I mean, Shay Mitchell is pretty and all, but really?

    • Haha “crumbly food in their beds.” It would not take me long to go insane from that, so many squick-y feelings!

  13. I am the only one who feels awkward watching the flashbacks? They try sososo hard to make the girls look like they’re like 13(ish), even though they’re obviously 10 years older, and it’s just painful to watch. Plus I hate the colouring.
    ALSO the comments (and the recap! and the files names of the pictures! independent clause exclamation point!) for this are hilarious.

  14. yes i do miss maya i mean come on people she’s hot!!!!! and nice. TEAM MAYA AND EMILY!!!!

  15. I’m still yelling at them for having no backup of the pedo videos. WHAT! I’d make like 90 copies and place them in bank safety deposit boxes and in the inside of hollowed out copies of Twilight on my bookshelf.

    Or at least not leave my laptop out like that when people are parading in and out of my bedroom.

  16. Hello there I am so excited I found your weblog, I really found you
    by accident, while I was researching on Askjeeve for something else,
    Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say thanks a lot for a tremendous post
    and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have
    time to browse it all at the moment but I have book-marked
    it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read much more, Please do keep
    up the superb work.

Comments are closed.