Pretty Little Liars Recap 504: The Cause of Death is Murder, Duh

Why hello there and welcome to a wholesome hour of lying and revenge. Let’s get to it, shall we?


We start off in some kind of book fair at Rosewood High, where dead students donate all of their books to creep out the alive students still around.

These are called books, Aria. You open them and they have words and stuff.

These are called books, Aria. You open them and they have words and stuff.

Just kidding. Maybe? Aria and Hanna are discussing Hanna’s new hair, which looks amazing, btw.

spontaneous1

spontaneous2

spontaneous3

via tumblr

They’re also looking through some books and they find The Scarlet Letter. I was waiting for a more obviously Scarlet Letter reference this entire show and this is how we get it? For real real? Hanna opens the book and finds that it once belonged to Shana.

OH COME ON

OH COME ON

She tries to hide it from Aria, but Aria’s got the wide-eyed crazed look she’s been practicing for the last few episodes, and she searches through the book for clues.

Well, aren't we a picker and a chooser of quotations?

Well, aren’t we a picker and a chooser of quotations?

Basically that entire book is one big morality tale about judging others, so. Mona approaches them and jokes that Shana won’t need the book anymore — because she transfered schools to Georgia, right? — so one of them should take it. Once again Mona has an evil smile and I can’t trust her and I’m annoyed about this. Why are they making her an evil person again?


I've made a huge mistake.

I’ve made a huge mistake.

At the DiLaurentis residence, Ali’s trying to do good deeds and donate her old clothes to Goodwill, but her dad is kind of weirded out about the sudden change in demeanor. Since when has Ali ever done anything charitable/good/right? She says she’ll need some notebooks to go back to school. Her dad tries to convince her that maaaaybe she shouldn’t go back to school and that they should move. That’s a solid idea, Mr. DiLaurentis, but it is never going to happen. Ali panics about moving and begs him not to take her away from her friends.


Did you know the neighbors never put on pants before 2pm? Are they freelance writers or what?

Did you know the neighbors never put on pants before 2pm? Are they freelance writers or what?

Next door, in Murderville, Spencer and Mrs. Hastings are having a sweet little chat over tea. I kid, I kid. Mrs. Hastings is freaking out about the crime scene in their yard and Spencer is begging her mom to figure out what secret Melissa and Mr. Hastings are hiding.

Maybe if we don't make eye contact Mr. Hastings will just fuck off.

Maybe if we don’t make eye contact Mr. Hastings will just fuck off.

Speak of the devil, Mr. Hastings walks on in and assures everyone the police will be out of their yard by that afternoon.

The show is being too obvious about Mr. Hastings being the murderer, so we know it’s not him. But why is he so sketchy and weird?


Sorry, Rosewood is fresh out of lightbulbs.

Sorry, Rosewood is fresh out of lightbulbs.

In a dark room somewhere, because of course, Lucas and Mona are scheming. Lucas wants OUT because Ali was locked in a dungeon and tortured and all that, and he’s feeling a little guilty about further torture plans. Mona begins to convince him that Alison made up the whole story, but we’ll just have to see whether Lucas is Good Guy Lucas or Scum Bag Lucas this season.


Maybe if we don't make eye contact, Spencer will stop telling these pun jokes she still thinks are funny and original.

Maybe if we don’t make eye contact, Spencer will stop telling these pun jokes she still thinks are funny and original.

Spencer, Aria, Emily and Hanna eat lunch outside to hide from prying eyes. Aria is still panicking about everything, but I’m just in love with her hat. Someone find me that hat stat. Aria’s convinced Mona knows, and to add to the strangeness, Mona just stands ten feet away from them, smirking in their general direction.

WISDOM

WISDOM

Stay cool, Mona. Also on the panic train, Spencer keeps discussing the murder of Mrs. DiLaurentis, and right on cue, Ali sends them all a text about how the police still don’t know her mom’s cause of death.


Bad form, bad form.

Bad form, bad form.

Alison is really trying to get in touch with the Liars, who are definitely avoiding her. She tries to sign a text “-A” and realizes maybe that isn’t in good taste at the moment.

Oh what a tangled web, Al.

Oh what a tangled web, Al.

Her dad comes in and says she has to go to the doctor to get checked out after being kidnapped for so long. This makes her panic, and almost act like a real human being for a moment!


Hi, I'm Andrew, and I'm heading up the committee to make these bathrooms behind me gender neutral for a more inclusive high school experience.

Hi, I’m Andrew, and I’m heading the committee to make these bathrooms behind me gender neutral for a more inclusive high school.

Out of nowhere but seemingly out of somewhere, Andrew shows up. Remember him? Smart? Strip study? Bearer of pills? Turns out under them sweater vests, Andrew has been hiding some muscles.

But who the fuck is Kyla? Why is she the best?

But who the fuck is Kyla? Why is she the best?

I say a silent prayer that Spencer will ditch Toby for this dude as Spencer invites Andrew over to do some yardwork around Mrs. D’s scene of death because naturally. Hmmm, so “yardwork” is what the kids are calling it these days. Gotta stay up on my lingo.

Man, I love Riese's Glee recaps.

Man, I love Riese’s Glee recaps.

Meanwhile, Aria’s in a dark classroom and gets a weird message from TheatreGirl who reminds her that oh yeah, she totally killed some girl in a theatre!

PLL504-00097

Better Google it! Actually, I just found out that Bing pays PLL to only show Bing searches. Ha ha, Bing, ha ha. Anyways, apparently FuneralVidz.com has a scene from Shana’s service online where Shana’s grandmother sings some gospel hymns so that Aria can exorcise her guilt via the Interwebs.

This episode involved a lot of close-ups. Nice pores.

This episode involved a lot of close-ups. Nice pores.

Except she just watches it with the wide crazed look we know and love. Did Ezra teach her that one?


Oh thank god you got my texts about faking an emergency so I can get out of this date.

Oh thank god you got my texts about faking an emergency so I can get out of this date.

Hanna is hanging out at a coffee shop and ignoring Buzzcut’s texts when Good Guy Lucas comes on over to “chat” which is weird when you think of how close they used to be. Hanna is saved by the bell when Ali calls her and asks her to go to the doctor with her.


No, you're funny. No, you are. No, no, you're way funnier. No, you are. No, you are.

No, you’re funny. No, you are. No, no, you’re way funnier. No, you are. No, you are.

Emily is teaching Sydney how to swim, apparently, and they’re BFFs now and Emily admits to avoiding her mother, so she volunteers to help Sydney train the next day. Cue awkward run in with Paige.

PEP RALLY LET'S GET FIRED UP FOR PAIGE

PEP RALLY LET’S GET FIRED UP FOR PAIGE

Later, when they actually do train on a Saturday, they end up inviting Paige to join them in running sprints on the track. Maybe Pretty Little Liars is gearing us up for its first poly relationship! Imagine if we got to see these three as a throuple. It’d be awesome.

This is the face you give your ex-girlfriend when she says something super cute and you want her to be your now-girlfriend.

This is the face you give your ex-girlfriend when she says something super cute and you want her to be your now-girlfriend.

They also go out to eat and Emily and Paige are kind of maybe flirting when Paige spots Mona a few tables over, giving her a death glare.

Sorry, this is the elbow patch only table.

Sorry, this is the elbow patch only table.


Tell me the truth, do these braids make me look like Dorothy? The truth. Bible?

Tell me the truth, do these braids make me look like Dorothy? The truth. Bible?

Over at the “yardwork” scene, Spencer and Andrew are chattin’ it up in some kind of very large shed that is not a barn because Spencer converted the barn to be a love shack for Melissa and Wren before Wren made out with Spencer but then Melissa and Ian lived there but that was after Spencer made out with Ian and anyways. Anyways, they’re in a shed and Andrew is super out of character and asks Spencer to make out with him and she says she’s still dating The Carpenter which could either mean she’s married to Jesus or she’s just been listening to that Avett Brother’s album on repeat a lot and feels super connected to it. I feel you, girl, last summer, I was pretty much in a relationship with February Seven for awhile too, okay?

AWESOME OPPOSUM

AWESOME OPPOSUM

I digress! Back on track: Andrew and Spencer find a dead possum (??????) and some rat poison.

AND ALSO OPOSSUMS APPARENTLY

AND ALSO OPOSSUMS APPARENTLY

Suddenly, Sleuthy Spencer is like “OMG MY DAD KILLED MRS. D WITH RAT POISON” which, well, maybe yeah.


Where are all the lights in this goddamn town?

Where are all the lights in this goddamn town?

Hanna goes with Ali to the medical exam, which takes place in a dark room (don’t they all? no?).

This looks way more inappropriate than it is.

This looks way more inappropriate than it is.

Ali lies and lies and lies and then we find a huge cut on her thigh and she lies some more and who knows. Hanna is pissed. It’s pretty clear Ali is lying at this point.

via tumblr

via tumblr


So then Paige was like, you know, so then I was like, you know.

So then Paige was like, you know, so then I was like, you know.

Meanwhile, Aria, Emily, and Spencer talk about avoiding Ali. Can’t say I wouldn’t do the same. Aria and Emily talk about killing people, which is a strange way to bond but I’m not going to hate on it, and Emily admits to being pretty obsessed over Nate.


Seriously, Mom, I'm sure straight people can lead healthy and fulfilling lives, too.

It’s okay, Mom, I’m sure straight people can lead healthy and fulfilling lives, too. I’m here for you.

Spencer comes home to find Mrs. Hastings in the living room with the wild glint in her eye — which must be contagious in Rosewood this time of year, like allergies maybe? — and Mrs. Hastings confesses that after Ali went missing, Mrs. D came by the house and swore Spencer was involved with her death/disappearance, and Mr. Hastings blackmailed her by saying that if she went to the police, he’d tell Mr. DiLaurentis about the affair. Well. Sounds like Mrs. D was trying to cover for someone and that’s why she started hating Spencer so much.


I NEED AN OLD PRIEST AND A YOUNG PRIEST

I NEED AN OLD PRIEST AND A YOUNG PRIEST

After the doctor’s visit, Ali pulls out a recording device and gives it to Hanna, instructing her to memorize it and share it with the other Liars. Hanna asks about the leg scar and Ali cryptically tells her, “Once you know something, you can’t un-know it.” Yeah, but I want to know. Any guesses?

Dear Diary, today Ali wore a pink shirt and it was really pretty. Love, Spencer

Dear Diary, today Ali wore a pink shirt and it was really pretty. Love, Spencer

Spencer is googl–I’m sorry, Binging. Bing-ing, searching on Bing to find the rat poison and reads that it is odorless and tasteless (thanks, Internet!) so it sounds like it’d be extra great for a murder. Ali texts Spencer, telling her to call her back ASAP. I’m glad Ali never stopped being high-maintenance. Staying true to her heart, that Alison.


Oh shit, whoa, you scared me there with your blazer from 1983.

Oh shit, whoa, you scared me there with your blazer from 1983.

Mona finds Paige in a dark alleyway and murders her — nah, just playing with you, she finds her and threatens her life, instead! Maybe. She tells her in no uncertain terms that unless Paige is with her, she’s against her, which means Paige is with Emily and Emily is with Alison. Don’t do something stupid, Paige! Please!


PLL504-00198

Over at the DiLaurentis’ Haunted House of Guilt and Regret and Backpeddling, Ali is Googling herself and finds a lot of hateful things. Turns out, people weren’t that sad about Ali being dead/missing. Ouch.

Never read the comments, Ali! NEVER.

Never read the comments, Ali! NEVER.

Spencer stops her from overdosing on the hatemail and they bond about how intense their lives still are.

PLL504-00206

Ali tells Spence that the cause of Mrs. D’s death was that someone messed with her medical prescription and gave her enough blood pressure medicine to stop her heart.


She said we could still be friends!

She said we could still be friends!

Aria goes over to Ezra’s house to hang out and practice their crazed looks for awhile, and Ezra gives her advice on forgiving herself. LOLOLOLOLOL Ezra says he’s already forgiven himself because of course he has oh gosh stop the jokes.

Ezra, it's offensive when you do that impression.

Ezra, it’s offensive when you do that impression.

He catches her on the phone trying to make an anonymous donation for Shana’s funeral and tells her that’s not the way of forgiveness. They play checkers.

Strip checkers, y'all!

Strip checkers, y’all!

No but seriously.


STOP with the boom box, Paige. It's overdone.

STOP with the boom box, Paige. It’s overdone.

Paige visits Emily and warns her that when Ali returns to Rosewood, she should stay far away, because so many people hate Ali that she’ll be in danger. Emily’s like “pssh whatevs” but then there’s a rustling in her bushes and she runs inside and hopefully thinks twice about her life choices.


Hanna is at the mall trying on clothes.

via tumblr

via tumblr

Something weird goes down with a stranger outside her dressing room door but we can’t be sure.

whoooooo is that giiiirl IIIIII seeeeee staring straight baack at meeeeeee

whoooooo is that giiiirl IIIIII seeeeee staring straight baack at meeeeeee

Spencer calls and asks her about the doctor’s visit recording. Spencer’s weirded out because she was just with Ali and Ali didn’t mention it. Hanna gets annoyed about lying for Ali and tells her she’s sick of being the messenger and hangs up and shoplifts out her rage with a pretty cute dress.


Def not looking for my pills, yep, nothing to see here.

Def not looking for my pills, yep, nothing to see here.

But back at the house of love, Spencer is making some dins for Andrew, but just like friend dinner not like a date it’s totally not a date okay? And she cuts herself. She looks into the cabinet and finds the exact same medication, Losartan, that killed Mrs. DiLaurentis.

HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE FROM ALL THE STRESS OF MURDER AMIRITE?

HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE FROM ALL THE STRESS OF MURDER AMIRITE?

Ohhhhhh shit.


No, Aria, see, fisting is like reaching into the bottom of a Pringles can.

No, Aria, see, fisting is like reaching into the bottom of a Pringles can.

But let’s go back to Ezra’s house, where Aria and Ezra are playing a totally innocent game of gin. Aria asks if she can spend the night because her dad is out of town and apparently her mom is still not living in the US and everyone is super awkwarded out until she realizes that’s a strange thing to ask an ex. That’s like messaging your ex and being all, “Hey, just wondering how you’re doing?” and even though you think it’s harmless it’s not harmless, don’t do it. She leaves, thank goodness.


But like, wait, like what if the earth, like what if Earth was actually like alive, man, and like, wait, like what if we're hurting it every time we even walk, like even if I put my foot down, like whooooaaaaaa.

But like, wait, like what if the earth, like what if Earth was actually like alive, man, and like, wait, like what if we’re hurting it every time we even walk, like even if I put my foot down, like whooooaaaaaa.

Emily and Ali are hanging out at Ali’s place and Emily tries to delicately tell Ali not to go back to Rosewood High.

You told me that was water-based lube and now I have this yeast infection and it's all your fault.

You told me that was water-based lube and now I have this yeast infection and it’s all your fault.

Ali accuses her of not being 100% committed to Sparkle Motion their friendship and says they’ll be fine if they just stick to the plan. I mean, friendship. Yeah, friendship.


Nah, we weren't just talking about you being a potential murderer, Dad, don't worry about it.

Nah, we weren’t just talking about you being a potential murderer, Dad, don’t worry about it.

Aria stays over at Spencer’s house instead, which you may think is a good call, except Spencer admits that she’s preeeeetty sure her dad killed Mrs. D.

Alex and Ali taught me a lot at the A-Camp whiskey tasting, girls.

Alex and Ali taught me a lot at the A-Camp whiskey tasting, girls.

Mr. Hastings waltzes on in and casually mentions that Mrs. Hastings won’t be home for a few days because she snapped at the police and so she’s taking a few days at “the spa.” I’m not sure if “the spa” is actually a spa or a rehab center or a shallow grave, but it doesn’t sound like a good thing.


We tapdance on out of Rosewood while watching Ali scroll through her hate mail with a strange grin on her face.

AND YOUUUUU'VE GOT TIIIIIIIIIME

AND YOUUUUU’VE GOT TIIIIIIIIIME

Even bad press is good press, right?


User craylittleliars on tumblr posted a pretty good summary of season 5 so far:

Everyone: ALI NO

Ali: ALI YES

Pages: 1 2 3See entire article on one page


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Hansen

Hansen is the former DIY & Food Editor of Autostraddle.com and likes to spend most days making and cooking and writing. She teaches creative writing at Colorado State University and is pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts in her free time.

Hansen has written 189 articles for us.

10 Comments

  1. Mr. Hastings put Mrs. Hastings in the SHU. I also think maybe Melissa Murder, Duhed Mrs. D? Or Ezra, because he’s still a skeezball? Why are they hinting that Aria and him are definitely getting back together? UGH.

  2. This was a great episode for Paige! She’s so strong now. She finally brought up how Ali hurt her to Emily. And the line to Mona about becoming what you feared. Awesome! And also I just have to say, she is looking HOT! <3

  3. I’m assuming Sydney is straight? Otherwise they may as well go ahead and classify the swim team as a team exclusively for obscenely attractive femme teen lesbians.
    This is not how I remember high school. When I was a young queer it was a clusterfuck of awkwardness and confusion and bad wardrobe choices and trying to wear my hair in that pretty way all the other girls could.

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