“When you believe a lie it becomes the truth.”
So how about that summer finale last night? They really meant fatal finale when they said it. SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t watch the Pretty Little Liars season 5 summer mid-season finale yet, than please stop reading and figure out what to do with your life. Because I’m going to tear this episode apart whether you like it or not. I’d also advise you to stay off of social media… the online world does not care about sparing you the suspense.
Mona died. Not in the “Ali died but actually pretended to be dead way”, either. I mean, she literally got murdered in cold blood. The final shot at the end, with Mona’s blue, lifeless, dead boy in a trunk really proves that our favorite nemesis is gone for good. And just when she was becoming super useful and siding with the liars. To be honest, I assumed Toby would be the one to go. When the episode started and Spencer wasn’t with the girls, I thought she died. I never expected them to kill off Mona just because she was so useful. Unfortunately, that’s exactly why they did it. And with her death, came so many more reveals, that my brain was literally on hyper speed last night trying to catch up. I started pulling on different strings of Ali’s previous stories and unraveling them. Basically, anything Ali has ever said, has been a lie.
Mona knew how dangerous Ali was this whole time. But it wasn’t until this episode that I really started to believe her. That my back hairs raised when I heard her voice around Emily. Mona decided to ultimately help the liars, but on the down low. And even knowing how dangerous Ali was, completely underestimated her. The episode began on Thanksgiving Day. The liars were helpless and turned to Mona for help trying to figure out what Ali was really up to. She went to the cops to do the lie detector test, and they weren’t really sure which story Ali was going to use.Was she going to throw them under the bus? Tell the truth? The only person with the means, team and utilities to find this out was Mona. She apologized to the girls for taking out her Ali fear on them throughout the years, but admitted she wouldn’t get involved. Yeah, right. Not until she knew for sure, what she was getting involved in. Mona rounded up her troops, which had decreased slightly since the first episode when Mona was building her army. Lucas was the only one still standing by Mona’s side. Ali had gotten to everyone else and convinced them that Mona was the bad one. That she was the crazy one.
That’s when Mona offered up the idea that Ali had gone full on socio. I couldn’t believe it, until I saw Spencers eyes bug out of her head. Ali was a socio and she had built her perfect little team of liars to meddle mess with. The smart one, the caring one, the loyal one, the one that feels. She would have gotten board with just one liar, but all four kept her on her toes. As to how she passed the lie detector with flying colors.. well, socio’s tend to believe their stories. Despite it being a lie, Ali had buried the whole truth without even knowing it because she had convinced herself her lies were the truth. When all the liars suddenly turned on her and cut her off, her fun little game was over. She couldn’t use them anymore and it was time to throw them under the bus.
After Mona and Lucas got footage of Ali’s confession though, Ali told the truth. Vaguely, but she focused on the parts that she knew would turn the cops suspicions from her onto Spencer– a lead she knew they were already pursuing. All she said was that she knew that Spencer had taken drugs that night and would do anything to make Ali keep that secret. Just like that, the seed of doubt was planted. Anyone else think that Ali may have practiced passing the lie detector? And how about when she paused when they asked her for her full name? Like she knew saying it might throw everything off because she was lying.
Either way, the girls finally said their deepest and darkest suspicions out loud; Ali is A. The suspicion that Queen B (or should I say A) was always out there, but no one ever thought it to be true. Why would Ali even want to do this? It seems rather obvious when you say it out loud. Take away the l and the i and all you have is A. But is it ever really that simple on PLL? No. Maybe this could be the time where we say yes, because it’s so easy to believe, but I can’t give in just yet. If Ali really is A, than we really have only hit the iceberg of answers we’re looking for. Have any of the stories she’s ever told been real? Mona was A for a little while, but said Ali stole the game from her. Why? Is it a game Ali started? Has their ever actually been an A that wasn’t Ali? Was she responsible for her own disappearance that night? Was this some kind of plan? Did Mona really help Ali get away? So many questions.
But instead of focusing on then, the girls took a break and decided to do normal things as to not throw anyone off and onto the Mona is the new fifth liar trail. Emily and Paige got back together… sort of. If you call Paige just skipping the whole “we have to talk thing” and kissing her ex in the hallway. It seemed to do the trick and Emily invited her over to help decorate the house in a million Christmas decorations. The girl loves Christmas okay! Hannah wasn’t in such a cheery mood, for whatever reason. Bad thoughts again I guess. Meanwhile, Toby came to Spencer’s house dressed up in his police attire. It’s clear we had a bit of a time jump since last weeks episode because Toby was already graduating from the police academy. How exciting. Although the moment was a bit too happy, so it was a dead giveaway that bad things were brewing on the horizon. Even Aria and Ezra got a bit of a happy moment. Ezra was busy trying to make pumpkin pie after being assigned to pie duty by the Montgomery’s, who invited him to Thanksgiving dinner. Seems like their finally embracing Aria’s beau, especially after they made such a mess of their own love life. It’s nice to see Ezra and Aria figure it out and get over the lies, with Ezra invested in the A/Ali happenings now more than ever.
The happy times didn’t last long. The minute Mona showed the girls Ali’s police video, Spencer knew she was the prime suspect in the murder of Bethany Young. The police, Holden to be exact, submitted an affidavit explaining they no longer considered Alison a person of interest in the Bethany Young investigation, but the information they obtained from Young’s hospital records confirmed a theory they had apparently been working since day one. Spencer murdered Bethany hoping to get in the good graces of the groups leader, Alison. But why would Alison want Bethany dead? Whatever was in the Radley files must link Ali and Bethany and the thought here is that Spencer would have assumed Ali wanted Bethany dead.
So here begins our Radley mission. I always get a tad bit nervous when sneaking in and stealing from Radley, cause you know it’s super illegal. Especially now that Spencer basically has an arrest warrant out. Mona and Spence dress up as nurses in order to sneak into the basement files. The whole plan is executed by Caleb and Hannah who are sitting in a getaway car, opening different security locks for them with Mona’s high tech system. Aria is spending the night volunteering in the art class to keep everyone distracted. Things get a little messy when a code-red appears, aka Holbrook pulls up to Radley. He confronts Aria about her volunteer work and asks if she started before or after they found out Bethany escaped the institution. He follows up with a question regarding Spencer.. did she make Aria do this? Of course not, Aria replies, but it doesn’t seem like Holbrook is even listening at this point. Emily has probably the most dangerous job of all. She calls Ali over to her house, basically to babysit her during this mission, and pretends that she misses her and wants to be friends. The charade falls apart when Ali asks Emily for tea and steals her phone when Em’s walks away, realizing that Emily is trying to keep her busy. Meanwhile, Spence and Mona reach the basement and find the answers their looking for. Mrs. D was having an affair with Bethany’s daughter. On the tape, we hear Bethany talk about how she feels betrayed by Mrs. D and how she wonders if it’s like mother-like daughter. Did Ali lie this whole time about actually knowing Bethany? Mona steals the recorded sessions for further investigation.
There’s many reasons why I’m thankful for the liars’ other half’s this week. Paige wanted to be a good gf and bring Emily some soup after she bailed on their date, but stopped in her steps when she saw Ali leave the house. She wasn’t jealous, she was curious as Ali got into her beetle with the two suspicious twins from the bathroom. Are they her little minions? She followed the car, which Ali drove to an abandoned barn. There must have been a dozen cars parked outside… which meant Ali was creating her own army. Spencer on the other hand, ditched Toby’s graduation. He was a little upset and a little worried knowing that Spencer wouldn’t have bailed, unless she had a pretty damn good reason. She did. As Toby was driving home, he got hit by a car and for a second I thought it was over for him. Thankfully, he just broke a leg and was confined to a wheelchair for a couple of weeks.
Of course, that’s not nearly the end of the liars’ problems.The next morning at the brew, Spencer get’s arrested for the murder of Bethany Young. Um, where did the cops get all this proof suddenly? Even the Radley files don’t say anything about her murdering Bethany, only make a connection between Ali and the young woman. So, under what pretense was Spencer arrested? For some reason, I feel like the police is also wrapped around Ali’s little finger. It’s kind of gross. With Toby graduated, there might have finally been a chance for a decent cop at Rosewood. Which makes all the more sense that whoever put Toby out for the next month or two, was someone working for the A team, making sure he didn’t meddle and try to help free his girlfriend.
Mona was busy trying to find a further Ali/Bethany connection from the stolen Radley files. You know things were going to go really wrong the minute she left the files unattended to say goodbye to her mother. It’s like leaving top-secret information in the open! When her mother left, Mona felt like she was being watched… and she was. By a hooded figure we assume is A. The blonde hair was sticking out from the sides, so it was kind of go-figure. Ali is A! Or was it a wig? Does A want us to think that Ali is A? Yes, I do understand how confusing that sentence is. Radley records indicate that Alison lured Bethany to Rosewood. She set Bethany up. She knew all about the affair and she was jealous of Bethany. “Aria, Alison is A an now I can prove it,” were Mona’s last words. Their still echoing in my ears. I think Mona knew way more than she was letting on– than what she told Aria during that phone conversation. Even the titled gives me that indication. Mona took a lot of knowledge, a lot of secrets, to the grave.. (as if the song wasn’t creepy enough). Knowing too much got her killed. As for the blonde who killed her, it may or may not be Ali, although by the look sheer look of terror on Mona’s face, I’d say it was definitely Ali. That’s the same look Mona got when she saw Ali in the hallway at school. She was terrified of the girl and she had every right to be. Ali murdered Mona in cold blood. Whether she had help from someone remains a mystery, but she murdered her, blood all over the house and moved the body. What kind of sane person would do that?
It did cross my mind that maybe the person was someone wearing a wig. Maybe Emily? Or Hannah? We’re not sure what the two were doing at the time of the murder. Spencer was in jail so she’s off the hook and Aria was on the phone with Mona and with Ezra. Wouldn’t that be quite the shocking twist to a shocking story? Mona’s death… or should I say murder, is one that will rattle the town of Rosewood again. And there will be a new mystery for the police to focus on! Who killed Mona? Where is her body? We know the answer to that.. in the back of A’s truck, holding baby jesus. Creepy, really creepy. I had chills during the whole ending of this episode. But what’s even scarier than seeing Mona’s dead body in the trunk… Ali’s face at the crime scene when Holden announced Mona Vanderwalt was murdered. She could barely hold back her joyful smile. At that moment, I never hated anyone more. I kind of wish Alison was really dead this whole time. If this girl even is Alison.
And here we open up a whole new can of worms. There’s still the twin theory to consider, although that might be out the door with the introduction of Bethany. Could Bethany be Ali’s step sister? Same mom different dad? It seems like Mrs. D got around. Are we to believe that everything Ali said about the night she went missing is the truth? Who clobbered her over the head if she’s actually A? The story that A was sending her texts doesn’t make sense anymore? Why would Mrs. D bury her alive? Who hit her? Bethany? Why was she dressed like her? And why would Bethany hit her, if records indicate Ali wanted Bethany dead? Why did Bethany end up knocked out also buried alive? Why was Bethany in Radley in the first place? Was there a third Alison at the barn that night? Her unknown twin? I really don’t know what to believe anymore. Was Ali even scared of anything/anyone this whole time? Also, who killed Mrs. D? Would Ali be that evil to kill her own mother?
And what happens next? What happens when Ali builds an army? When the season returns and the liars hate her, now more than ever. No one thinks Ali is guilty. Is she going to continue trying to ruin the liars’ lives? And if so why? What’s the end-game here? How will they make it without Mona’s genius help? How can they prove that Ali is a socio and behind everything when no one believes them? Honestly, I need answers now more than I’ve ever needed them before!!!!
Lastly, RIP Mona. You have been one of the most intriguing, suspenseful, terrifying characters on the show. You’ve held it together, when none of the liars could. You’ve gone from nerdy, to psycho, to creepy, to friendly, to completely scared of one person. It was shocking to see someone so powerful, so scared of Alison. Fear is very powerful and Ali knew that, but she was also threatened by the brains behind Mona. Thank you for the good and the bad times. Farewell Mona. Hopefully, the liars make Ali pay for what she did.
We Gotta Get Out of This Place- Denmark and Winter
Coffee Table News
WATCH: The New ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Is Dark AF
‘A’ is not messing around in the Pretty Little Liars spinoff Original Sin.
If you thought we’d seen the last of ‘A’… think again. The masked stalker is back to torment a new group of little liars on the HBO Max series.
The ten-episode season will debut Thursday, July 28 with three episodes. Two new episodes will follow on August 4 and 11, with the final three episodes debuting on August 18.
A new teaser for the series reveals the tone is going to be much darker than the original ever was, and that’s likely thanks to Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Riverdale, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) who serves as writer and co-executive producer.
Check out the teaser — complete with a new version of the intro song “Secret.”
Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin synopsis: Twenty years ago, a series of tragic events almost ripped the blue-collar town of Millwood apart. Now, in present day, a disparate group of teen girls — a brand-new set of Little Liars — find themselves tormented by an unknown Assailant and made to pay for the secret sin committed by their parents two decades ago…as well as their own. In the dark, coming-of-age, horror-tinged drama PRETTY LITTLE LIARS: ORIGINAL SIN, we find ourselves miles away from Rosewood, but within the existing Pretty Little Liars universe — in a brand-new town, with a new generation of Little Liars.
We Don’t Need a ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Reboot
Pretty Little Liars, which premiered in 2010 on ABC Family (now Freeform), took fans on a rollercoaster ride. The twists and turns were so dramatic and exaggerated, halfway through the show’s 7 season run, many fans began to taper off.
Dedicated fans, however, stuck it out despite the fact that the show was rapidly going off the rails. Why? Because they desperately needed to know the identity of “A,” and later, “AD,” once and for all.
And the glorious day came on June 27, 2017. As we sat huddled up in front of our TV screens, we were filled with a mix of emotions ranging from confused, misled, and finally, relieved.
“Relief” is a strange emotion to feel when a show ends. Most fans tend to feel a sadness wash over them when the curtain falls, but with PLL, the finale was a sign that the madness was officially over.
The journey with the liars is one we’ll never forget, but let’s face it – most fans are not clamoring for more, especially not a mere three years after the finale. Heck, some of us are still trying to piece that ending together in a way that makes any rational sense.
We’re living in a time where reboots are hailed by TV executives as a sound and sure-fire idea. There’s plenty of examples of success: Dynasty, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Charmed, and Roswell, New Mexico. Even revivals that have honed a place in society with shows like The Conners and Fuller House both leading the pack.
But the one thing that these reboots have in common is that the original shows aired a decade or more ago. The key to a successful reboot is nostalgia; they aim to hook the original fans while also appealing to a brand new generation.
Reboots may either reimagine a familiar story with a modern spin and new characters or reunite fans with characters years later a la catching up with friends years after college.
It’s obvious that PLL does not fall into the category of a show that warrants a reboot. Not yet, at least. There’s no sound argument when one could argue that enough time has passed to try to take a stab at this overly complex teen mystery drama once again.
One of my biggest gripes with the PLL reboot, which was officially announced as an HBO Max original, is that it doesn’t center around the original liars.
I’m firm in my belief that had it not been for the popularity, relatability, and dynamic of Lucy Hale, Ashley Benson, Troian Belissario, Sasha Pieterse and Shay Mitchell, the show wouldn’t have found a cult-like following or lasted as long as it did. The ladies made the show worth watching and managed to sell us on every single outrageous storyline.
Many of us stuck with the series because of our love for the liars. But the reboot, billed as “set miles away from Rosewood” in a new town, with a new set of characters, strips the very identity of PLL.
How can you have a show without any involvement from Aria, Emily, Hannah, Spencer, and Alison? They are the pretty little liars. There is no show without them. No one is interested in watching a new generations of teens get tormented by threatening cyber-stalker who knows too much about their life, which was fun to watch partially because it paralleled the rise of technology and the fears surrounding privacy that came along with the emergence of social media.
Even if the ladies considered (and I use that term loosely — they are over here working on their careers and expanding their families, after all) returning for a reboot, not enough time has passed for a proper reunion.
There’s been talk of a potential movie sequel involving the original liars, and truthfully, that’s an idea fans of the original could get behind. It would be a one-time thing, it wouldn’t overstay its welcome or feel forced, and it would hopefully gives fans the follow-up they’ve been dying for.
Earlier this year, Hale said she wouldn’t “rule anything out” but ultimately, they’d “need a little more time to pass.”
“I feel like we would get more out of it if we were, like, 10 years down the road,” she explained to Entertainment Tonight, adding that she’s protective of the show. Hale worked with Roberto Roberto Aguierre-Sacasa on the short-lived Katy Keene, so I’m truly curious to see what she thinks about this upcoming reboot. Note: none of those involved with the original have weighed in or commented yet.
Honestly, much of the pushback that I’ve seen about this rumored reboot is for that very reason — fans, even the ones who thought the finale came out of left-field and was a total dumpster fire — are also super protective of it. We don’t want anything or anyone to taint the show’s legacy.
We also cannot ignore there’s the fact that PLL’s Marlene King attempted her own reboot of sorts shortly after the series concluded and even centered the storyline around two familiar faces, Alison DiLaurentis (Pieterse) and Mona Vaderwaal (Janel Parish), to drum up support and interest from the core fandom. That didn’t work.
PLL: Perfectionists lasted a whole ten episodes before Freeform pulled the plug leaving any fans that submitted themselves to yet another A-like mystery in the dark. It’s a shame the series wasn’t give a real chance because it had potential if it stayed true to the books and veered away from trying to make it so much like it’s predecessor. In this case, a complete overhaul could’ve worked if done right.
And it’s probably better if I don’t mention Ravesnwood, the second PLL spinoff that centered around Caleb Rivers (Tyler Blackburn), which saw a lot of people seeing dead people in the neighboring town. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy the show’s ten-episode run, but it’s yet another example of the franchise trying to reinvent the wheel and failing miserably.
If King couldn’t make these shows work while PLL was at its height, maybe it’s because the audience needed to take a break from the world of A?
Which brings me to my next point… Roberto Aguierre-Sacasa. You may not know the name, but if you love teen dramas, you’re familiar with his work. He’s the brains behind The CW’s successful and oftentimes disturbing teen thriller Riverdale.
One fan on Reddit noted that “PLL walked so Riverdale could run,” and let’s be honest, plenty of fans (and critics) have called the show a hot mess. However, that’s what we’ve come to love about Riverdale; it’s wacky, weird, and only tolerable when you suspend all disbelief.
He’s also proven himself in the reboot-realm with Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. CAOS is an entirely different ballgame; it’s a dark twist on the 90s sitcom Sabrina the Teenage Witch that pulls much of its inspiration from the Archie comics. It offers up an entirely new world featuring new takes on some beloved characters. Not to mention Sabrina wrapped its run in 1996 meaning enough time has passed; the world was ready for the Spellman’s once again.
As I mentioned, CAOS is ending with its upcoming season while Aguierre-Sacasa’s other series, Katy Keene, was cancelled after just a season at The CW.
I’m not questioning Aguierre-Sacasa’s qualifications — I’m a fan of his shows — but I don’t think jumping into and revamping a still-fresh franchise is necessary right now.
Apparently, neither does Twitter. One person commented that he should “stick to one show and make that good.” I’d prefer HBO Max gave Katy Keene another try rather than investing into this PLL reboot.
The reboot seems to be hoping to capitalize on the the original fandom (the brief teaser features the same imagery as the original right down to the logo), but the fandom has opposed a reboot from the start. And they’ll be further alienated with the reboot’s description of a “horror-tinged, coming-of-rage” version.
Aguierre-Sacasa’s strength lies within creating shows permeated with twisted mysteries that have a campy, horror vibe, which is tonally different than the psychological mind games we’ve come to expect from PLL.
There’s room for another teen thriller, obviously, but maybe it would be best to leave the franchise alone and call the show, which is shaping up to be its own entity anyway, something else entirely? “Original Sin” minus the “Pretty Little Liars” would have given the series a fresh-slate without any comparisons.
Here’s the show’s description so you can decide for yourself: “Twenty years ago, a series of tragic events almost ripped the blue-collar town of Millwood apart. Now, in the present day, a group of disparate teen girls — a brand-new set of Little Liars — find themselves tormented by an unknown Assailant and made to pay for the secret sin their parents committed two decades ago. as well as their own.”
I’ll watch merely out of curiosity and because I’ve made television my job, but man, I haven’t even had time to miss PLL yet.
If you really need to feel the PLL-void in your life, the best thing to do is just stream the original episodes, because I think we can all agree that some things are better off left alone… at least until enough time has passed to revisit them through a new lens.
Coffee Table News
‘Pretty Little Liars’ Cast Reunites for a Podcast that Involves Drinking and Rewatching Episodes!
The moms of Rosewood got out of the basement just in time to start their own podcast!
All jokes aside, Holly Marie Comb (Aria’s mom Ella), Lesley Fera (Spencer’s mom Veronica) and Nia Peeples (Emily’s mom Pam) are reuniting to rewatch episodes together and offer some commentary.
Honestly, I’ve always wanted to know what the moms of Rosewood thought about what their daughters were up to/involved in, especially since half the time, it didn’t seem like the liars even had parents!
The podcast, titled “Pretty Little Wine Moms” (yes, ladies!) means that they will be sitting down with their favorite drinks and breaking down one episode at a time. Since they were a part of the production, they’ll be able to add in behind-the-scene tidbits.
Here’s where things get super fun — each week’s episode will have a new special guest that joins in for the chat.
According to Digital Spy, guests will range from other cast members, writers, directors, and producers.
This month alone the podcast will feature Shay Mitchell (Emily Fields), Brant Daugherty (heads-will-roll Noel Kahn), and Torrey DeVitto (Melissa Hastings).
In September, the lineup includes costume designer Mandi Line, writer/producer Bryan M. Holdman, Ashley Benson (Hannah Marin), Lucy Hale (Aria Montgomery), Sasha Pieterse (Alison DiLaurentis) and Tyler Blackburn (Caleb Rivers).
I love how much support the moms are getting from the cast and that the cast is finding new ways to keep this fun and twisted show alive!
Of course, we cannot wait for the mom-circle to be completed with a guest appearance by Laura Leighton (Hannah’s mom Ashley)!
The idea for the podcast came to Lesley where she was bored at home during COVID. She invited her co-stars to appear on her podcast with her husband, Ned Mochel, and fans were so thrilled that the moms were back together again, they figured why not roll with it?
We’re so glad they did.
And we cannot wait for the mom’s to spill some tea! Maybe they’ll finally tell us how they got out of that basement…
Here’s a snippet of how I envision this podcast in my mind:
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