“Smile! I want to take your picture! This way, I can photocopy it 1000’s of times; wallpaper my bedroom with it; and tongue kiss your image while performing various pagan rituals in the nude. Sound good to you?”
A few weeks back, when I started watching Pretty Little Liars, I honestly chose it because there wasn’t much else on television at the time. I figured it would be a guilty pleasure — good for a few laughs and snarky one liners made by me, at the characters’ expense. But, now, I am three episodes in, and all I can say is . . . WOW! This show is WAY better than a summer replacement on the “Good Little Christian” cable network, has any right to be . . .
Did I mention it has more attractive, yet VERY creepy, men than an episode of The Bachelorette?
It’s enough to turn a straight girl, gay!
Let’s get on with the recap, shall we?
The Blair Bitches Project
When the episode opens, the girls inexplicably decide it would be a GREAT idea to head out into the dark and creepy woods — very close to where their friend Ali very likely met her demise (assuming she’s actually dead, of course) — in order to “pay tribute to her memory.” This is undoubtedly because these girls were all too young to have seen The Blair Witch Project. Therefore, they have no idea just how frightening “dark and creepy woods” can be. (Consequently, they also probably have never experienced the unique joys of “shaky cam,” or of being able to look up a crying college student’s snot-filled nose on a very big screen.)
Might I interest you in a tissue?
The girls abandon their plans, upon hearing some disturbing noises in the woods, and receiving a highly threatening message from the mysterious “A.” A says that it is “open season on liars” and that they are “being hunted.” (It is the sort of message that, upon receipt, a teenage girl would absolutely bring to the cops if: (1) she wasn’t starring on a TV show dependent on her NOT behaving like a logical human being; and (2) the one “cop” in town that could help wasn’t the, quite possibly INSANE, Deputy Douchey.)
“I’m cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs! And teenage murder suspects . . .”
Hanna Goes for a Little Drive . . .
When the episode begins, Hanna wakes up to find that, once again, Deputy Douchey has spent the night in her home, and had his “grapefruits squeezed” by Hanna’s mother. (Way to go, ABC Family! That was a nice little euphemism for “third base” you snuck in there. Don’t think, for a second, that the kiddies watching at home didn’t notice!)
While I spent a good portion of last week’s recap reviling Deputy Douchey, and his one-note, mustache twirling, “Cop Gone Wrong” villiany, I must admit that he looks pretty darn good without his shirt on . . .
And his grapefruits aren’t half bad either . . .
Deputy Douchey (who, apparently, loves being shirtless so much he’d feel quite at home on an episode of True Blood) taunts Hanna, when she accuses him, in no uncertain terms, of using Hanna’s mother to get the “inside scoop” on Hanna and her friends. After Douchey leaves the room, Hanna’s mother magically appears. Wise Hanna explains to her mother that regularly boinking an arresting officer, just so Hanna can beat the petty shoplifting charge with which he saddled her, seems like a wee bit of an overreaction.
Hanna’s mother explains that she just loves squeezing his grapefruits this is a “touchy subject.” (Uh huh . . . “the subject” is not ALL she’s touching, these days.) While they argue, Creepy Deputy Douchey stands just out of sight, sporting a facial expression suspiciously similar to that of THIS GUY . . .
Coincidentally, Mini Me is the pet name Deputy Douchey has for his “grapefruits.”
At school, Deputy Douchey interrogates Hanna once again. But without the other girls as witnesses, his questions take a highly inappropriate, (bordering on sexual harrassment) tone. He basically insinuates that Hanna MUST have killed Ali, because she used to be a little pudgy and isn’t any more. And if weight loss isn’t a motive for murder, I don’t know what IS!
In a surprisingly smart moment for this heretofore kind of dim-witted character, Hanna realizes that Deputy Douchey’s knowledge of her recent “transformation” comes from personal and private items he found in her home (while having his grapefruit squeezed), and not things of public record, like, for example, the school yearbook. She calls Deputy Douchey out on this, by saying, “Is THAT how most cops crack their cases?”
You GO, Former Fat Girl!
Later, in a surprisingly smart moment for an even DIMMER-witted character, Hanna’s mom notices Deputy Douchey snooping around Hanna’s stuff, recognizes that she is being played, and kicks him to the curb! “SQUEEZE YOUR OWN DAMN GRAPEFRUITS, DEPUTY DOUCHEY!”
Speaking of grapefruits . . .
. . . apparently, Hanna’s boyfriend, Sean, doesn’t want her squeezing his. At a big keggar party, Hanna brings Sean to some “romantic” shed, straddles him, and starts to unbutton his shirt. He rebuffs her advances, and calls her desperate. Then, in a mind-boggling attempt at courtesy, he offers her his jacket before leaving her now-suicidal ass alone.
To make matters worse, Hannaa gets a text message from A saying that “Hefty Hanna never gets her man.” Is it any wonder she freaked out, stole the keys to Sean’s car, and crashed it into a tree?
Well, actually . . . it IS kind of a wonder, because normal people just don’t react that way. But it sure makes for great TV!
Spencer’s Sister hates Spencer’s guts, but LOVES the Russian Revolution!
Careful Spencer! We all KNOW what happened the last time this Crazy Chica didn’t get her man . . .
When we last left our good pal, Spencer, she was swapping spit with her sister’s hot fiance, Wren, while, unbeknownst to either of them, Spencer’s sister looked on in horror.
Melissa quickly kicked Wren to the curb. Now she is playing the guilt card for all its worth, ripping into Spencer every chance she gets, and forcing her parents to cancel all her wedding arrangements for her, because she is “too upset” to do it on her own. But she did change her Facebook status on her own! So THAT’s something! (This reminds me . . . there should really be a separate status on Facebook that says: Single . . . because my sister is a better kisser than I am.)
Clearly having seen the One Tree Hill episodes featuring the “Crazy Nanny Carrie” storyline, Spencer knows her sister is NOT one to be messed with. So she goes to visit Wren in hopes of squeezing his grapefruits getting him to clear her name, regarding the whole “kissing thing.” (“He started it!”)
Having been exhiled from La Casa de Uptight and Unfriendly, Wren is now crashing on his friend’s couch. And he seems . . . different. Gone are the argyle sweaters and the too neatly combed hair. Gone is the heavy British accent. (This actually might not have been intentional on the actor’s part.) As a result, Wren seems to be an even better match for Spencer than he was before — younger looking and more genuine.
Wren claims he tried to help get Spencer back into her family’s good graces before he left, but to no avail. “Perhaps my biggest mistake was falling in love with the wrong sister,” he admits.
Awwwww! I was skeptical at first, but the idea of these two together has really grown on me. I really want it to work out between them . . . even if that means a life spent living in fear of the wrath of Crazy Nanny Carrie . . .
Later, a stressed out Spencer, who is too busy having sex dreams about Wren to write her OWN paper on the Russian Revolution, heads to her sister’s laptop and steals hers. Mind you, her sister’s paper is SIX YEARS OLD. She has graduated COLLEGE and yet her HIGH SCHOOL assignment is still easily accessible form her laptop.
Now, I’m assuming that Melissa has purchased at least one new laptop between 2004 — when she wrote the paper — and now. Because I HAD a laptop in 2004 . . . and it looked kind of like this . . .
OK . . . I’m exaggerating . . . A LOT! But, needless to say, Spencer’s sister’s laptop looked pretty new. This means that she had to have LOVED her high school history paper on the Russian Revolution, SO MUCH that she took the time to transfer it over to her new computer all those years later. Now, I’ll admit, there were one or two papers I wrote in high school that I kept around after graduation. (There was one in particular about the way the show Dawson’s Creek dealt with loss of virginity among teens about which I was particularly fond.) But a paper on the Russian Revolution? COME ON!
We all know THIS little lapse of judgment is going to bite Spencer in the ass very soon. Don’t we?
Give Me Shelter from the Slut
Speaking of Crazy Ladies, Aria’s got her hands full with quite a doozy of one, herself. Apparently, Spencer’s father’s mistress, once a student of his, is now a teacher at the same college where he is a professor. And her office just happens to be right across the hall from Daddy-O.
“An apple for the teacher? Or, perhaps, you’d prefer a squeezed grapefruit?”
To make matters worse, this mistress, named Meredith, seems intent on aggressively insinuating herself into Aria’s dad’s life, repeatedly stopping by unannounced whereever Aria’s father might happen to be at the time. When Aria confronts Meredith, and calls her out on her stalking, Meredith DOESN’T deny it! In fact, she basically tells Aria that it’s going to keep happening. Furthermore, she implies that, because Aria is in high school, she can’t do anything about it.
Older fans of Pretty Little Liars might recognize the actress who plays Meredith, Amanda Schull, from her starring role in that very adorable dance film from a little while back, Center Stage . . .
Younger fans might remember Schull from the ABC Family Original Movie, Sorority Wars, which aired fairly recently. In it, interestingly enough, Schull plays the nemesis of Lucy Hale, the girl who plays Aria on Pretty Little Liars. Apparently, these two are just destined to hate one another on the small screen.
Infuriated by this recent turn of events, and by the fact that her mother continues to be kept in the dark about her father’s affair, Aria dashes off to Mr. Ezra Fitz’s apartment (How did she know where he lived?). In a very sweet, and surprisingly chaste moment, the pair simply stand in silence, and hug one another close. Aria cries silently, her head buried in Ezra’s chest, as he gently strokes her hair. (And I am sighing, and getting all girly for the SECOND time, since this episode has begun. What are you doing to ME, Pretty Little Liars?)
Emily, Two Psychos, and a Probable Lesbian = The Most Intense Love Square EVER!
“DUDE! Ease up on the vulcan death grip, and I MIGHT let you watch me and Maya make grapefruit juice together . . . emphasis on MIGHT.”
Emily’s storyline was by far the most intense of the evening. It started innocently enough, with more flirtation, touching and sexual innunedo exchanged between her and Miss “I Have a Boyfriend Back Home” Maya. When her boyfriend, Ben, invites her to a “parent-free” party, Emily nonchalantly asks Maya to come with. Ben is obviously annoyed by the invitation, but SEEMS to brush it off (emphasis on “seems”).
To further complicate matters, Emily keeps getting intense looks from Toby Cavanaugh, older brother to the now-blind Jenna. Toby was shipped off to boarding school the year before, for setting fire to the Cavanaugh garage, which, if you recall . . .
. . . Ali did, not him.
Spencer remembers Toby and Ali having a heated conversation, which implied that Ali had some very detrimental dirt on Toby. After his conversation with Ali, Toby took the rap for setting the garage fire, even though it seems like he knows that it was the girls who did it. Toby (pictured up top) is actually kind of cute, in a “Norman Bates from Psycho” sort of way . . .
Come to think of it, Toby WAS hiding near the SHOWERS during this next scene . . . hmmm.
Later, in the girls locker room, after having taken a shower, Emily hears a noise, and is surprised to find her boyfriend, Ben, there. In a disturbing, and seemingly out-of-character scene, Ben pushes Emily up against the locker and forces himself on her, ignoring her repeated cries of “NO!”
Out of the shower nowhere, Toby Cavanaugh comes and pushes Bad Beater Boyfriend Ben out of the way, clocking him hard in the nose. A highly freaked out Emily extricates herself from the brawl and escapes, quickly dumping Ben on her way out.
Later, at the keg party, a newly single, Emily arrives with Maya as her “date.” The two enter into a photo booth (Riiiiiight! Because every kid who throws a party when his parents are out of town, takes the time to rent a “photo booth” for the event . . . paid for with his parent’s credit card, of course.)
One thing leads to another, and, before you know it, these two are making out hard core, while the photo machine just snaps away. While the pair is still inside, SOMEONE snatches the photographic kissing evidence . . . But who could it be?
Later that night, on her way home, Emily finds Creepy Toby Cavanaugh playing with an old-fashioned camera. She thanks him from saving her from Bad Beater Boyfriend Ex-Boyfriend Ben. Toby says little, but is clearly crushing on our girl, Emily. Later, blind Jenna, who overheard the exchange, DEMANDS that Toby explain why Emily thanked him. “It’s not what you THINK!” Toby insists.
Is it though? The next scene shows a disembodied hand photocopying Emily’s and Maya’s purloined makeout pictures and plastering them all over his or her entire wall. Could the wall belong to Toby?
Did I mention that “Dead” Ali’s bracelet has mysteriously appeared in the woods, since the last time the girls visited . . . even though Ali was purportedly buried with it?
Ooh! This is getting good . . .