Note: Do not read on if you have not seen Season 2, Episode 23 of ABC Family's "Pretty Little Liars," entitled "Eye of the Beholder."
Apparently, we missed a pivotal couple hours of "Pretty Little Liars" life. I get it, it's a TV show. But still, it's kind of frustrating where this week's episode picks up after last week's cliffhanger: Aria's friends had their backs turned in Brookhaven when some dude mistook her for "Vivian" (i.e. Allison in a brunette wig) thanks to her red trench coat.
Now, the quartet is sitting at Lucky Leon's and going over the Brookhaven events. "When we noticed you didn't come back, he was gone," Emily explains. Or doesn't. What does that even mean? "They're like trying to solve a murder! Were they not worried that she could have been abducted?" my mom questions.
Aria explains that his name is Duncan Albert (Spencer Hastings mocks this) and he's been in Florida for a year. "Apparently, they don't have phones there," quips my mom. Aria told him that she was a friend of Vivian's and that he hasn't seen her since she gave her the coat.
Then, Jenna gets out of a limo with a patch on her eye and Toby on her arm. Spencer looks pretty devastated ... and not because Duncan Heinz has a cooler name than she does.
It's a new day and Hanna and her mom are arguing in the kitchen. "I think Hanna's mom needs to eat something. They don't eat," my mom observes of Mrs. Marin. Ironically, they essentially live in that kitchen. But back to the argument at hand. Hanna wants a phone after throwing hers in the sink, but he mom says a cell is a "privilege" and in order to have one, she needs to let her into her life.
School time -- and by that, we mean, chillin' out in the hall period or sitting in the courtyard class. "They never go in a classroom. It's like they don't go to school," my mom notes. On this episode, "Pretty Little Liars" takes it to a new level showing Ella (Aria's mom and a Rosewood teacher) out of school in the middle of the day, but more on that later. Seriously, these kids are going to fail their APs and SATs and many other acronyms.
Then, they go off to their separate corners of the hallway. Emily gets a text ("Em- I'm okay. Don't tell. More soon. Maya"). A very awkward Spencer runs into a very cold Toby and they talk about Jenna's surgery (in one eye). "She looks like a quaker lady," my mom observes of Spencer, who gets shut down when she tells Toby, "I've been thinking a lot about us." Spencer is really having all kinds of relapses, particularly of the clothing variety. "Spencer looks like she's dressed for St. Patrick's Day as the quaker," my mom says. Apparently, she's made up her own St. Patty's Day tale.
Aria and Duncan meet in the Rosewood courtyard (of course) and he asks if Aria is her real name because "Vivian" wasn't "Vivian's." Aria breaks the news that Ali is dead and that she disappeared two Labor Day weekends ago. He demands to know what happened to her and gets upset, but agrees to meet with Aria one last time. He also says he saw her that weekend she went missing.
She tells the others as they walk home, past Toby and Jenna's house and they see Garrett's car speeding away. Toby is talking to the fire department and they worry he's telling about "The Jenna Thing." Suddenly, text alert (oh, Hanna got a bootleg one from Maya at school): "Where there's smoke, there's payback. -A"
Fast forward to Jenna and Toby waiting in the hospital, where they meet Ren (or Dr. Kingston). Jenna teases Toby that "even a lie would sound good in that accent." But my mom is too busy saying, "Jenna and Toby's parents have yet to surface!" Of course, I reply. "Why would they? Their blind daughter just had surgery (in on eye) so she could see. No big deal."
Back at school, Emily is walking and Spencer is reading in the courtyard. They talk about the Toby and Jenna situation, Emily's dad being abroad (though her mom returns next week) and the text from Maya. Jason shows up (I think Spencer says, "My reserves have been really depleted") and he says he has a new bag of Ali's stuff that they may want to look through. Maya dropped it off. Huhsorrywhat?
Ella shows up at Mr. Fitz's office and he offers her "chocolate milk or an apple." Apparently, someone confused college with pre-school. She assures him that despite their non-destructive conversation about Ezria, she is not an ally. Apparently, still on her A game, she asks Ezra if there's anyone he knows who wants to hurt Aria ... or him. "Why doesnt Ella ask me if there's anyone who would hurt her?" my Ella-hating mom questions. "Guess who??" Anyway, Ezra says no about Aria (unintentional lie), but as for him, there used to him. Hmm. Curious.
Mona and Hanna talk about cornering Toby to talk to him about Spencer. Mona says she has a cousin going through rockabilly phase so she's interested in Toby's truck for sale. It works and Hanna sneak attacks and says, "Did you forget everything Jenna did you?" Toby retorts: "No. Did you forget what you did to her?" One point Toby, no points ringleader Hanna.
Jason brings the bag to Spencer's and Aria stops by. She's meeting Duncan and Spencer doesn't seem concerned enough for the typically neurotic young lady that she is. And they continue to delve into the bag's contents, Spencer's mom (i.e. Olivia Benson) walks in. She's got a new haircut, but looks stick-up-her-ass-y as ever. Jason leaves quickly and Spencer's mom says never invite him over again.
Aria meets Duncan at the airfield and he takes her flying. "What poor judgment," my mom whines. He said he took "Vivian" flying as often as possible and he could have been in love with her if someone hadn't already gotten her in the way. But, the increasingly creepy Duncan lying made her feel safe.
"I'm disappointed that Aria would be that dumb to go meet him alone and then get in a plane with him no less AND I'm disappointed in Spencer for knowing Aria is going to meet him someplace and not being concerned about that being a good idea," my mom adds. "Spencer gets dumber each week and Aria has zero common sense. But who can blame little Aria considering who her parents are dumb and dumber?"
Back to the not-so-friendly (and not-so legit) skies, Duncan tells Aria to take control like Ali would because that's what she loved. "They couldn't get to her," he says. When Aria has had enough, Duncan demands she continue to fly the plane. He says he read about Ian and Aria tells him the liars think the note was fake. "We think he was trying to protect somebody," she adds. Apparently, that's enough for him to have her hand over the pilot reigns.
But before they land safely, Duncan says Ali flew from hilton head with him and by Aria's calculations, that means she was there six to seven hours before they originally thought.
Things get a whole different kind of scary for Aria's dad and boyfriend. Byron shows up at Ezra's office and finally, Ezra tells him he's not moving for the job and stands up the Byron. It's kind of amazing (kind of inappropriate all things considered), but amazing nonetheless. "YAY!!!!! Ezra is here to stay, " my mom says. "Go Ezzzzieeee! I'm loving this Ezra. I'm sooo proud of him!!!!! Awwwwwww. There's still hope for them."
She's really starting to get nasty about Byron. "Life must have been rough for Chad Lowe being the ugly dorky bro of Rob," she adds. Is that some empathy?
As the night falls, Emily gets an email from Maya who writes about how much she loves how Em can "be still." Oh Maya, just stop.
Spencer and her mom (Det. Olivia Benson) have a fight over dealing with Jason and her mom says she's the one who hired the detective. Not sure why that's a twist, but I am sure about this: "The Hastings are messed up folks," my mom explains.
Hanna comes over and comments on the fact that Michelle Obama is wears things twice, prompting Spencer to take a closer look at the paper. It's dated 2009, which means Ali (not Maya nor her parents) is the one who wrapped up the contents.
Spence tells Hanna to go get the bag, which she dropped off on Jason's doorstep. When she gets there, a weird light and haze seems to be taking over the house and Hanna notices something's off so she peers deeper through a back window. Suddenly, we see Jenna's face plastered up against the window and Hanna heads inside.
Spencer apparently notices something's amiss and heads over to Jason's as well, where smoke is coming out of the windows. She arrives just in time to help Hanna drag Jenna out of the home before the whole thing blows up ... literally.
Jenna wakes up in the hospital and explains that Jason texted her and she took a cab over there. But he wasn't there when she got there and she's not sure who was.
Meanwhile, Ren (apparently the only doctor in Rosewood) is bandaging up Spencer's hand -- which they unfortunately keep showing -- and asks if she wants to pretend like certain things never happened, but she says no.
"Spencer's mom shows up, but not Toby or Jenna's? I find that annoying and insulting. Then call them orphans -- don't keep mentioning them and never showing them!" my mom frustratedly says.
The liars finally head in to visit a very distraught Jenna. They tell her Jason wasn't around so they don't know who could have sent the texts. Jenna asks why Hanna saved her -- as Toby informed her -- and Hanna simply says, "You're welcome."
Back home at the Hastings, they dig back into the bag. "What??? How did that bag survive that fire?," my mom asks. A very valid question to which I do not have the answer. They find a postcard that is ripped that says "#1" on the back and a newspaper with an ad for a "concert at the gazebo" circled with red pen. Maybe that's where Ali went before she "arrived" via cab from Hilton Head that day?
Suddenly, Ali's music box pops open and "Fur Elise" play as the scene shifts back to Jason's house. A's gloved hand places what appears to be Garrett's badge on the porch.
Who are you thinking A is now? My money's still on Melissa (at least, in part) and my mom is voting for Rena and Mama Hastings. How could she think Olivia would do such things?
Worst Outfits of the Night
- Aria's fishy dress. Serious, she looks like Mrs. Frizzle on aquarium day.
- Mona's patterned leggings.
Best Quotes of the Night
"I can't go around without a phone. that's like going without a brain or shoes."- Hanna
"Just the one eye?"- Spencer
"Frankly. I'd like to take that cane and whack her like a pinata ... Just kidding ... Sort of ... What's Jenna gonna be like if she gets to see again?" -Mona
"It's like out of the frying pan and into the volcano"- Spencer
"Spencer i hate to break this to you, but you have a very complicated life." -Ren
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