Pretty Little Liars: Game Over, Charles

Part 1 of 2: Sorry, Who’s “A”, Again?

Give yourself a pat on the back — you made it to the end. Along the way we shared some laughs, some tears, some blinding rage and, at least on my end, about 57 bottles of wine. I’ll be honest, I lost sight of the end goal at certain points of the journey but we relied on each other for support in those dark times; what the hell even happened with Ravenswood? CeCe Drake is A — it’s here and it’s real. Granted there are some gaping plot holes and several of the “answers” feel a little too convenient but you know what? I DON'T CARE. Did you want this A bullshit to continue for another season? Did you want to spend another year of your life sweating who was behind the damn mask? NO. Girl, I’m 30 years old – it needed to stop before I literally become Ashley Marin and begin my collection of silk blouses. I took that Buzzfeed quiz and I’m like one box of wine away from that truth.

 

We left the Liars at Barn Prom 2K15 and open on the same scene — only now there’s a mystical trap door that appears to lead them right onto the Carrisimi Group property. (I know they drove there but that editing job.) Everyone is still serving their sickening prom looks and are joined by Mona, who’s on the case in a red robe and dress. It’s cute. Here’s a candid photo I snapped of them breaking into A’s secret HQ. 

 

Once again, there’s another trap door that reveals CommAnd Central, and as the Liars stroll in without a damn care, Sara hangs back because she’s claustrophobic. I’d argue it’s because she doesn’t want to be in close proximity to everyone’s stunning prom looks while she’s wearing something Nana definitely sported during happy hour in Miami Beach, 1981. How did no one think this was suspicious? “Oh, you’ve presumably found the answer to the riddle that’s literally ruined our lives for 5 years? LMK HOW IT GOES BYE.” 

 

Now, if you didn’t already suspend most of your belief in reality as a fan of Pretty Little Liars, here’s where that mental exercise is going to coming in miiiiiighty handy. That final trap door reveals a room that’s straight up fictional science, complete with an starship console and holographic, plasma screen which just starts floating in the room like it’s totally normal and not a stunt to bring back Tupac for an “impromptu” collab. Join us next season when Tom Cruise guest stars as a crooked cop in Minority Report: Cold CAse Files: DiLAurentis Edition, She Wrote.

 

And once you’ve accepted this ethereal portal into another world as a genuine item not stopping the girls in their tracks to reflect upon the wondrously advanced technological age we live in, you get to learn that A has been…

CeCe Fucking Drake. And you besta believa she pulled out the tightliner trick for this reveal. 


Yes, after all the speculation it turns out that CeCe transitioned at young age, lived her life with the name Charlotte and abandoned that once the A Game took over, gifting the world with CeCe. There’s a TON of exposition and plot filling that happens on a Passions-like level after the reveal, but the biggest surprise that Red Coat and Black Widow were actually…

Sara? New girl in town, Sara? The character that’s been in my life for a hot minute and barely offered me an opportunity to like her?


Oh, right, one more thing — Bethany is legit deceased and Mona’s the real culprit, but it’s turns out lil ol’ Bets is the one that sqaushed Mrs. Cavanaugh with a sharp shove off Radley roof. The real crime Bethany should have been locked up for was owning that sweater and not using it for kindling. I know the 90s were a dark time for everyone, but even sociopaths can has taste. 

 

Speaking of taste, what’s the deal with DiLaurentii and the color yellow? It takes a special kind of person to acceptably pull it off, and I’m not here for this shitty cardigan. I bet she turned that into a shrug later in the day for a "casual look." I say we shrug that trend off this history books and forget that boob hammocks were a serious style.

 

Maybe CeCe just needed some time away because this tbt in the coral/orange print with complementary geometric necklace is something I can be present for. Three snaps down boots, gal!

 

Speaking of TBTs, let’s enjoy this PLLers throwback as well. They were not feeling CeCe. I’m not even getting into the whole, “You sound just like our friend Ali” insanity because I have functioning ears and those two women sound nothing like each other. Second side-note: Aria, so glad you got rid of that vest. The Sons of Anarchy aesthetic isn’t yours. 

Pretty Little Liars: Game Over, Charles

Part 2 of 2: The Party Don’t Stop

I’m physically exhausted trying to condense this episode into an easy-to-read recap but after 45 minutes of listening to answers that just barely did their job of answering shit, I’m worn down. Not to mention the fashion didn’t change an ounce during the reveAl except for some black sweatsuits. I suppose Mona’s weaponized wedge deserves a shout out — who keeps a spike in their shoe?

For the instances that we did get a taste of fashion, it all came back to CeCe and this side-by-side proves she was slaying the game from Day 1: 

The hair seems to always have been on point as well. If she had the chance and wasn’t stifled by her conservative family and their fetish for keeping elaborately complex secrets, Ali wouldn’t have been half the queen bee.


Look at the DiLaurentis fam before they headed off to the lake or cottage, or wherever the hell they ended up that summer. Mama D is still rocking some yellow, Alison’s sundress is appropriately beachy, I’m ignoring their asshole dad, and Jason is giving me mid-2000s bro for days. Sick board shorts, bro. You wouldn’t think to look at them they’d be four of the most manipulative, secretive, untrustworthy people in the state of Pennsylvania. 

To save you some time (and from reliving the long-ass explanation again), Sara didn’t go in the room with everyone because she planned to blow up Radley, but because Spencer is this generation’s MacGyver (look it up) she defused the bomb before it went down. Then CeCe threatened to jump off the roof but everyone begged her to stop (not before Hannah called her out because that’s what Hannah do). So it all ended nice and wrapped-up like.


We’re treated to a lil' good-bye scene between everyone as they head off to college while Ali stays behind. I know the actress is substantially younger than everyone but I can’t remember if Ali was actually younger, too. (Ed note: No, but someone had to stay behind in R'wood, because future plot something something.) Anyway, Hannah’s polished punk look is still turning me out, and Aria’s hip-hop inspired jumpsuit has me living; that keyhole though.

I’m not sure if Spencer’s going to be painting houses in an 80s rom-com while in Georgetown but it’s a cute casual look. I left out Emily because she was wearing a printed t-shirt with a surfer on it and I’m not here for that lazy Old Navy bullshit.


As the Liars drive away Ali’s left standing in front of the house that, by all accounts, should be torn down since it’s got some illegal burial plots and has been the site of several kidnappings and assaults. She actually looks content in her Stevie Nicks “Sisters of the Moon” drapery – very suburban witch and I can feel that. Sometimes, after you’ve ended a 5 year odyssey of trauma, murder and suspicion, you just want to be comfortable.

Oh… but… but did you think it was actually over? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA NO *bursts into flames*


Yeah, get a snootful of FFFY Ali (that’s Fast Forward Five Years):

GUURRRLLLLL. Who knew a little eyeliner and mascara could age someone so flawlessly? I am living out loud for Ali’s new look. We catch our first glimpse of the gang when they rush into a classroom and tell Ali, “he’s coming for you.” I’m no genius, but the fact she’s writing “Mrs. Rollins” on the board and has a quote from The Scarlet Letter written on the blackbloard suggests that we’re in for a much sexier mystery next season.

 

Granted this isn’t the best photo of the FFFY PLLs, but I had to get you feasting on Emily’s leather pants. If this is an indication of what’s to come, you can give me butch femme for days and days, honey. Aside from her evolution, the rest of their styles seems fairly consistent, but with an edge of sophistication you’d expect after five years.

 

Is it my wine-soaked eyes, or is Emily giving you serious Pam vibes? Aria’s gone a lil lighter with her hair so by 2025 she should be full on blonde. Hannah’s pulled back on the eye makeup and I’ve gotta say, looking fresher than you. Spencer, I don’t know where we’re going to start with these bangs but I suppose we’ll have to take it from the top. Finding the hairstylist that recommended those better be the subplot next season. 

 

Y’all, at this point I don’t even know how to sum up this finale. I’m on board with CeCe, not happy about Sara being so important, worried about the Wine Moms, curious about what’s wrong with Rosewood and all the towns surrounding it because it seems like their either oblivious to the absolute fuckery that’s going on, or they have their own shit to deal with (Ravenswood!); I feel like I was in a fight with an 8-year old on a playground who kept making up answers to questions no one asked just to win a game of tag, y’know? I’m going to talk to some pizza about this — bye.

Pretty Little Liars: Last Dance

Wine Moms Solve Crimes: Part 1 of 2

Y’all, it’s the greatest time of the TV fashion year: it’s prom season, and I for one am salivating to see what the PLLs have in store for us. Also this week, some stuff with the plot like we’re still pretending to care about that, and also the PLL Moms come together to pitch their own spinoff. NGL, I would call it Wine Moms Solve Crimes and I would watch the hell out of it. 

 

We open with the Liars being informed by their moms that they’ve been disinvited from prom. The Liars are outraged, but honestly that seems legit to me. They’ve never once in the course of this show gone to a party that hasn’t ended with them finding human bones sewn into their corsets or having satanic rituals projected onto the wall, and why should the rest of the senior class have to put up with the drama?

Aria is feeling leopard print even more than usual this season. This is what, her third leopard piece in nine episodes?

Has she abandoned birds for leopards in the wake of her PTSD? Instead of ripping feathers off birds in her spare time has she started to maniacally skin leopards for their spots?

 

She’s inspired Ella to follow in her footsteps with a print of her own.

I mean, floral’s nowhere near as adventurous as animal, but Ella usually sticks to a solid-color drapey jersey top. This is downright daring for her. Just don’t let Aria talk you into a safari-themed outfit of your own, Ella.

 

Hanna continues to combine her girly season 1 look with her grunge season 5 look to good effect.

This sweet little blue frock would be almost too girly, but the front zip edges it up just a little and the jacket adds attitude. Get the blue underside of her cuffs—those little details are what make her look so polished.

 

Ashley continues to display her closetful of silk blouses.

The red is not her worst (looking at you, fuschia tiers from 6x06), but it’s not her best either.

 

Emily continues to define bland with her daywear.

You can barely see this outfit. Doesn’t matter. You’ve seen it before.  It’s what she wears every week. It’s a tank top and jeans, and there’s a flannel tied around her waist. Let’s not talk about it anymore. Isn’t Emily pretty?

 

Hey, wasn’t Pam a really conservative dresser when we first met her? I seem to recall a lot of severe button ups and flat-ironed hair. Props to her for letting her look evolve with her politics!

The shirt isn’t doing much for her, but she’s got that Rosewood hair going.

 

But oh, Spencer, my Spencer, what are you wearing?

I know the word basic is so 2014 but I can think of no other way to describe this look. This is a sweater and black jeans. There are no embellished details, no animal prints, not even any accessories. This is something a normal teenager would wear to school. What the hell, Spence?

 

I mean, it’s slightly better than her other daywear look this week, in that you can tell that she has a waist in it.

But on the other hand, this sad, droopy pinafore is exactly the kind of endearingly nutty outfit we depend on this show for. Be bold, Spencer! Let your outfits be either spectacular or spectacular failures!

 

At least Veronica is repping for the WASPs.

She’s serving classic nautical chic like she was born to do it, ready to hit the country club at a moment’s notice.

 

And meanwhile Alison continues her phase of wearing dull outfits and being kind of mopey and boring.

Remember when she was a delightful Machiavellian mastermind and everyone trembled below her satin espadrilles? And now she’s this kind of dull sadsack who’s pretty sure her stalker could be redeemed if she could just talk to him and who’s wearing this perfectly pleasant but nothing special sundress-and-cardi combo. I guess prison really does change a girl.

 

The moms decide to throw the PLLs a pity prom in the Hastings barn and then come together to chaperone drink wine and talk shit about the DiLaurentises.

Ashley’s lavender silk marks her as the most fashionable of the moms, but Pam in her sensible cardigan is the most hilarious drunk, earnestly whispering, “I love it” about Veronica’s hors d'oeuvres platter as mom-jeaned Veronica goes on a rant full of conspiracy theories. Ella is, you know. There. Like mother like daughter.

 

So all of the wine-drunk moms break into the DiLaurentis house, confront Rhys, and get locked in the basement by possibly A. This is supposed to teach them a valuable lesson about what their daughters went through, but my main takeaway is that I would really enjoy a TV show about a bunch of suburban moms who fight crime.

Pretty Little Liars: Last Dance

Once Upon a Vaguely Threatening Text Message: Part 2 of 2

 

Now let’s get into the part of the ep we actually care about: prom fashion. 

Oh, you pretty little liars. Bless you all.

If you’ll recall, the prom is fairy-tale-themed, hence Emily’s tiara and Aria’s rodeo Snow White look. I actually like things about all of these looks but that’s no fun, so let’s rank these worst to best, shall we?

 

I know! You thought it would be Aria at the bottom, but I’m putting my beloved Spencer there instead! 

Look, this is a lovely, tasteful gown and Spencer looks lovely and tasteful in it, but bitch, this is the Pretty Little Liars prom episode. This is not the time for tasteful restraint! I do give her props for wearing satin without turning into a wrinkled mess, though.

 

Props for the hair, too.

It’s very Reign, which is all to the good.

 

Hanna’s walking the fine line between “prom dress” and “wedding dress,” which is a place she tends to go at formal dances (remember the Winter Ball last season?). 

Still, this is romantic and pretty, and the little flowers tucked into the back of her hair are a sweet touch. And get the shoes! Fierce as hell.

 

Now see, Aria’s spectacularly weird outfit is the kind of thing that makes this show’s fashion worth recapping.

1. It is not exactly a look that you would call pretty.

2. Nor would I say, as Aria did last week, that this dress was “made for twinkle lights.”

3. I thought we had all agreed to leave the crop top prom dress with Bianca Stratford in the last millennium, where it belongs.

4. She appears to be wearing a wrestling belt directly below the crop on her top.

5. I still kind of love it???

 

It’s just so nuts that it loops right back around again to being a delight. 

Those of you tracking Rosewatch 2k15, please note that her skirt is printed with roses.

 

And now for our winner.

That’s right, mark your calendar: Emily Fields just won a PLL fashion challenge. She never lets her clothes have this much personality, but this Evil Queen ensemble is so much fun. The tiara! The high, beaded collar! Plus, everything is perfectly proportioned: look how the fishtail hem balances the pointy padded shoulders to give her that dramatic silhouette without drawing focus from her hourglass figure.

 

Also, check out these knuckle rings.

I am normally opposed to knuckle rings on principle, but when they have a lace filigree pattern and you are dressed as the Evil Queen, I will allow them.

 

So the PLLs hear that Ali has gone to the prom to look for Charles and promptly crash it, and then meet up with the Significant Other Auxiliary Unit.

The other half of Spoby continues to fall at the bottom of the pack.

That boxy gray suit is not doing anyone any favors. Seriously, if Toby isn’t being gratuitously shirtless than what even is the point of him?

 

This sad little blur is the closest we come to a head-to-toe shot of Sara’s prom outfit.

Is it that ugly? All I can tell from the shot we got is that there are beaded straps involved, which seems so far so 80s so business as usual for Sara. Maybe she’s pulling an Ashley (RIP Revenge), and her outfit is so good that the show refuses to give us an h-to-t on principle.

 

Ezra is also there, slow-dancing with his formal pupil at his former place of employment. Let’s not think about it too hard. 

The black-on-black’s a little sleazy, but that’s appropriate given the situation.

 

Hanna dressed Caleb, and boy howdy does it show. I can maybe see him getting an impeccably tailored slim-cut suit on his own, but there’s no way he would have come up with that ascot.

This scene is hilarious because as Caleb is explaining how he, teen hacker extraordinaire, got an amazing tech job he just casually mentions that he’ll be covering Hanna’s tuition and she does not react at all, like, that’s how this works, right? Lots of 18-year-old boys out there pay for their girlfriends’ college tuitions, yeah? Shame he didn’t mention that before she had her insane dance meltdown trying to get that scholarship.

 

So while the PLLs are not at all getting kicked out of this dance that they were formally barred from, and apparently Lucas and Jenna are beginning a beautiful romance offscreen (shipping it hard), Ali is running around accosting randoms and yelling, “Charles?”

Full props for her Belle-themed gown: it’s lush and dreamy and romantic, and her makeup is on point. The eyeliner is Swan Lake levels of dramatic and she’s totally making it work.

 

The gown is also doing some plot work. First of all, the yellow and the flounces recall the World’s Ugliest Shirt that she wore in the pilot and all subsequent flashbacks to the night of her disappearance.

Second of all, this dramatic entry echoes her entrance to the Winter Ball from 5x13, where she’s also framed standing on the stairs, gazing out at the dance.

Only then, she was surrounded by an army of minions. Now she’s alone. (Seriously, what happened to her minions after she went to prison? Did they all defect?)

 

Anyway, remember how in 5x13 Ali wandered off by herself to a twisting labyrinth of mirrors, where she was surprised by someone in a mask and a hood?

And you know how in this episode she wanders off to a twisting labyrinth of mirrors, where she’s surprised by someone in a mask and a hood?

This is not conclusive proof of anything, but if I had to put money on it, I’d say that Cece’s under that hood.

 

Next week we find out for sure! Post your theories on the secret identity of ChArles in the comments, and come back next week for the mid-season finale and the big reveal.

Pretty Little Liars: FrAmed

Part 1 of 2: The ConversAtion 

We're only episodes away from the sixth big reveAl, and according to Troian Bellisario, all of the questions we've ever had re: PLL will be answered in two weeks. Because, y'know, if you can't rely on a celebrity's instagram account for honesty, I don't know what you can rely on. In the meantime, we're at that point in the season in which we find ourselves with more questions and no answers. Like, why are there no age-appropriate women who aren't being stalked by psychopaths for the handsome officers of the Rosewood PD to crush on? Does Aria's artwork belong in a gallery or an episode of American Horror Story: Doll Factory. And, are Hanna and Spencer really onto something or have they watched Chinatown one too many times? 

 

In the aftermath of the deflate-gate baseball and laced-gbear showdown, the girls gather for some coffee with a side of jugdement. 

These are the faces of four friends who really don’t care that you’re concerned for your psychotic brother who has potentially been harassing them for ages. We’ll focus more on the outfits later, but I do want to point out that Spencer is wearing a winter beanie, despite the show establishing last week that we are now in May/June territory. Maybe she chills easily?

 

Later, at the Brew, Aria meets with Clarke to talk about her upcoming art show whilst Ezra lurks nearby.

Aria’s bob is the best thing to happen to this show’s convoluted calendar since producers decided to hire an actual fourteen year old to play Alison 6 seasons ago. The hair is super cute and young and makes her look at least passable as a college (if not high school) student. Her black tank with sequin snake around the neckline is just “eh.” It’s by no means hideous but also doesn’t have me rushing over to google to purchase. Clarke is in a Member’s Only jacket that must have been ordered in bulk for the young men of Rosewood. Moving on.

 

We have the pleasure of viewing some of Aria’s lovely “art.” 

In the words of Mikhail B.’s daughter in the final season of SATC, “Hideous. Just hideous.”

 

After watching Gene Hackman in The Conversation and deciding she needs to join his level of cray, Hanna convinces her mother they should return the scholarship money she received in the last episode because it comes with strings. Puppet strings. 

Despite the pressures of A/Charles/?, both Marin ladies are bringing it. Hanna looks chic (albeit not age-appro) in a fitted, patterned shift dress that reminds us that it is May, Spencer! May! The belt creates a flattering waistline and the purse adds a nice pop of green.

 

Meanwhile, Ashley continues to be the coolest Mom on the block in a silk cream button down and leather-accented blazer. 

 Oh Ashley, if only your common sense was on par wth your fashion sense.

 

Over at Melrose Place Lorenzo's apartment, Ali and Lorenzo do some bonding that involves chicken soup, stolen keys, and whispered promises of romance.

Wait! You guys!! Maybe Lorenzo knows more than he's letting on?! Obviously, he has borrowed one of Jason's henleys!

 

 Ali does some un-Ali-like things like fetching water and folding laundry. She must like Lorenzo. Or want to do some snooping. Or both. 

 In our first photo, we saw the front of Ali's outfit. It was okay. The turqoise shoes were a nice touch. But here, here is where the PLL costume department loses me. What's with the Santa Fe earthtones/beaded belt and the lace cardigan? Are we at a tea party or are we in Montana? And no, we're not at a tea party in Montana. It doesn't work that way. 

 

Well, at least we know why Lorenzo needed to borrow a henley from Jason. Weird.

 

Over at Aria's, Aria and Emily have one of show's most realistic teenage convos re: prom and crushes. 

 "Y'know, teenage angst- it just hurts so much. It made me take a pair of scissors to a perfectly good t-shirt. But then, y'know, I put it on anyways..." Oh, Em. You're so pretty.

 

In the land of eavesdropping and two-way mirrors, Hanna and Spencer enter the office of Rhys MAtthews. 

Spencer hasn't changed from the top that Emily obvs lent her. I'm not even going to bother with describing it because, I mean, look at it.  

 

A great scene ensues that involves dressed-like-it's-winter-in-May Spencer being the sane one while Hanna avoids being "bugged" with a crumpled piece of paper which leads us to...

Rhys Matthews akA Charles Di'Laurentis??!! 

 

Pretty Little Liars: FrAmed

Part 2 of 2: What's This, Another Factory?

So, Aria wants to attend her art show, but Ella thinks it's a bad idea because, yknow, there's a serial stalker on the loose. Detective Tanner (who I personally wouldn't trust given her recent up in creep factor and questionable outfit choices) says it's all good, so Ella caves.

While Ella's parenting choices aren't super consistent, her accessories are on point. The black tank, layered gold neckaces, and olive cardigan? Why, it may be one of the top outfits of the episode! 

 

At the gallery opening, Ezra dons a button-down that appears to be covered in spiders. On second glance nope, those are palm trees. Not sure which is worse. I just really. don't. like. it. Plus, is it just me, or does Ezra seem in desperate need of a comb recently?

Aria decides this is a good moment to ask her former teacher to prom. As one does. Unfortch, Ezra is expanding his dating pool to include women his own age, so the invitation is put on hold. 

 

It's the moment of truth: Aria's artwork is about to be revealed to the world gallery. The ladies have come in outfits filled with details to discuss. 

Let's start with the amAzing. Hanna is killing it. This outfit is city gallery perfection from the black leather sandal booties to the white romper to the fitted leather jacket and perfectly coiffed hair. LOVE. Emily is 50 shades of boring in a shapeless black dress and converse sneakers. Okay, the converse are kind of cute. Spencer's outfit reminds me of a Marc Jacobs runway model, and not in a good way. At least she has caught up with the seasons with the floral pattern. And Aria. Aria, Aria who rejected a dress earlier for not being "gallery-appro" and this is what she chose. Well, okay then. Ballerinas it is.  

 

While I don't find Aria's dress to be anything to write home about, I do enjoy her earrings. 

 

The artwork is reveAled, and it's a little deadly different than expected.

 

 

Ella is (understandably) pissed because Tanner told her it was going to be a quiet night.

She's also clearly dipping into the Rosewood water because her hair looks goooood. The sparkly top, pendant necklace, and blazer are all a good choice for your daughter's gallery debut. Golf claps, Ms. Montgomery. Aria looks pissed she didn't ask Ella for fashion advice before leaving the house covered in ballerinas.

 

Alison sneaks into the PD using Lorenzo's swipe key (?) and sees a different type of gallery.

At least we know the oldest high schooler in the world definitely isn't A. Well, according to Rosewood PD (which may not be saying much). 

 

After the gallery, the gang (minus Aria) somehow spot and follow Rhys Matthews to one of Rosewood's many abandoned factories. This one specializes in dolls. Creepy.

The girls decide it's a good idea to sit and watch, so they sit and watch Clarke follow Rhys into the factory. Poor Aria, another one bites the dust. 

 

And, in another part of town, after threatening a DiLaurentis, Detective T watches surveillance of someone switching out Aria's gallery pieces.

We are left wondering: Are Clarke and Rhys in cahoots? Is Rhys a DiLaurentis? Who is the woman (?) in the red cape? What is going to go down at prom next week? And most importantly, what on earth does Queen of T-Shirts Emily's dress look like that she needed TWO fittings?

Pretty Little Liars: O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Part 1 of 2: Calm Down, Queen

I do not have time for these yard sale games. First, you’re gonna give me Charles — who just might be A — and then you tell me he hasn’t been missing forever because Mama D passed him off as a second-cousin named Freddie? Then, Hanna and Aria are blessed with pennies from heaven, except the source also funded Radley? But wait, you also gonna have the girls cut out their own tracking devices which they could not find for weeks rather than ask Spencer’s cop boyfriend for help? Oh that’s right, he’s too busy tripping balls over some laced gummies. Gurl. This episode was like Midnight Mass during Christmas — too much. (Oh, and if you want to watch along with me, I Periscope'd some of this nonsense.)

 

DiLaurentis Manor is now a satellite police station, complete with beat cops in plain clothes. Though I gotta say, that red chambray is doing this fella a world of good. Jason, on the other hand, is falling into that DiLaurentis pattern of having more money than you know how to buy clothes with and such. If he’s not dressed like a mannequin at a country club pro-shop, he’s giving you a baseball shirt look that only works when you’re 17 and ripped. If he just lost the shirt, 100 times better. 

 

Alright, this nosy girl, "Claire." It needs to stop. As far as the fashion, I’m alright with what I see; I’m not paying cover, but I’ll watch the opener. The pattern on the dress is cute and modern, but that drapey bolero should be used to start the fire that burns down Rosewood once and for all. Emily’s back is serving you her usual loose-fitting, athletic t-shirt from The Gap (or something). Not a feast for the eyes, but I’m nibbling. 

 

While Emily deals with this chick (who openly admits to wishing Sara was dead), the other three show up to Manse DiLaurs looking for Ali or Jason; anyone at this point. They know that Charles is after them, so they’re doing that loyal friend thing and letting him know. I think Aria borrowed that jacket from Emily — those leather sleeves are so Ems. Spencer looks surprisingly child-like in the sundress and cardigan. Remember when she’d wear weird animal print? Bring that shit back!

Oh, and while you’re back there, make sure this Tipper Gore red wool nightmare never gets made, so Hanna can never purchase it ever again. You can’t be anything of the US (PO or FLO) looking like my grandmother leaving a prayer group.

 

*SNACK TIME* Emily takes Sara and Sally Snoop to an offensively cute dessert place that’s conveniently between Rosewood and whatever backwater swap the other one’s from. I mean, of course there’s something like this close by. Why would they have to meet at a Starbucks on the side of a highway? Oh, and they’re sharing milk & cookies. No pie. No cake. No coffee. Milk & cookies. Fill in the blanks, kids. 

 

Sara, gurl, how long were you trapped in that well? She looks like a Marie Claire covergirl from 1988. Michelle Phillips will never die with this queen on the prowl and I'm in heaven. I don't care if it's trendy — I love acid wash. Always have, always will. No apologies needed for you public school stares, I live my own life.

 

In the background, the gals have been ringing Ali’s phone like it's after school 1988. What they don’t know is Papa D essentially kidnapped his daughter to "save her" from Charles. Ali makes a solidly valid point when she asks why doesn’t he just call the police and warn her friends. Of course, who’d listen to her? She’s just a pretty teenage girl who’s been though severe emotional trauma, faked her own death, shortly became a master of disguise, and managed outfox a serial killer for six season. WHAT COULD SHE POSSIBLY CONTRIBUTE.

 

For me, however, the real story was Mike and Mona; having two names start with M really cuts down on the shipnames. I’m living for that pattern on Mona because it’s giving me Zubaz Realness. However, let’s not allow it to distract us from the fact that Mike just barged into this woman’s room unannounced and just sat there, waiting for her because she didn’t return his calls, like he’s entitled to her attention. INTERROGATE THE MALE PRIVILEGE. 

 

Of course they kiss. I know what I’m watching and that I can’t ask for more from it than what I’m served. Those earrings though. Honey, I’m living through those and it is a cosmic existence. Feels like when you go to the taco truck and it’s 2 for $5 day. 

Pretty Little Liars: O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Part 2 of 2: Two Snaps For The World

Long story short, Ali eventually gets in touch with the girls and tells them Charles is on his way and he’s feeling mighty murdery. Hanna and Spencer meet up to discuss where they can get more hideous laptop covers (I assume) and they’re still in the same outfits. I’m getting a peep of Spencer’s knee-high boots and living, but Barbara Bush on the sofa there is bringing me down. The Wilma Flintstone pearls have got to go. 

 

OK, so we know they were searching how to remove your own microchip because, y’know, why tell the police about it? Seriously, why would anyone, after finding a tracking device buried in their neck after several weeks, want to seek professional help? This is why there are YouTube videos of dogs having their chip removed, or learning how to live in a post-pearl world. If Aria’s nautical top can be missing some very crucial pieces (re: sleeves), and Emily’s hair can consistently make up for her wardrobe, they can obviously take care of this medical procedure on their own. 

 

Hey, Jason — yeah, when you decided to follow one of those absolutely creepy balloon invitations to Charles' "birthday party" you were asking for every drop of it. I mean, it was so comically obvious what was about to go down, they even threw in a giant ominous shadow over your shoulder. Look alive, cap'n. Make me believe you own that leather jacker. 

 

Now for my favourite part of the episode: when Toby gets totally strung out on pot gummies and A uses a pitching machine to take out the cops. Let’s take a quick look at Toby and his square jaw: 

Yeah, on the left we have Officer Serious Toby who throws maj shade at Spencer when she says she and gals can "handle it." Queen, he’s a cop now (and was a bit of an obsessive detective previously), I think he can bear some of the load. Although, if he gets an ounce of pot in his system, girlfriend's riding the train real hard into Coachella Station.


During Tobes' descent into Wonderland, A pulls out the funniest shit I’ve seen in weeks and turns the pitching machine on the cops. A is pelting those fools with baseballs at speeds of about 90/mph and the Liars are screaming like they’re caught in No Man’s Land during World War I. Spencer, I get that a series of fast-travelling baseballs could indeed cause some injury, but if they’re real cops, they’ve got flak jackets on; those things can take a punch.

Look at this man down, giving you the face of dying extra in Pearl Harbour who never took an acting class.

 

Near the end of the episode, Jason and Ali enter what could easily win World’s Most Haunted Attic 2016 and find a home movie, already in progress. It turns out Mama D would socialize young Charles by pretending he was their second-cousin named Freddie. Because if isolation in a hospital wasn’t enough, bringing him out for a taste of freedom with his brother and sister on sporadic occasion definitely wouldn’t cause feelings of resentment, abandonment or vengeance. Solid parenting, Mama D! 

Can we have an early #tbt to when Toby was so strung out on pot he couldn’t speak or look at anyone in the eye? This ain’t Intervention on A&E — he’s gonna be fine. Toby’s all shaky and sweaty like he’s in a K-hole or something. That hippie said she only had medicinal shit anyway. He’d have to eat his weight in laced-up gummy bears to be tripping and stumbling this much. Queen, please.

Pretty Little Liars: No Stone Unturned

Bitch Chipped Them: Part 1 of 2

Well, Hanna straight up killed it this week. Between stealing Leslie’s car, proving that she was right all along about Charles, and sneaking in some quality time with her boyfriend, all while wearing the world’s sparkliest sleuthing outfit, girl’s on fire. The other Liars, I dunno, angsted over their own significant others and debated possible As, but Hanna’s the one really getting shit done this week.

 

She’s also keeping Rosewatch 2k15 going for another episode in this rose-printed blazer. Which is fine, but the blouse is a little matchy-matchy. I know I applauded Hanna’s return to her Homecoming Queen fashion roots last week, but there’s Homecoming Queen and there’s middle-aged real estate agent. And the last middle-aged real estate agent on this show died, Hanna (RIP, Mrs. D.).

So she uses her feminine wiles to get this valet to give her Leslie Stone’s car in a very Veronica Mars move.

 

I’m sure Spencer would be suitably impressed if she weren’t distracted by mooning over Sober Dean and feeling sad over how she devoted her life to schoolwork and is now totally burnt out and thinks school is meaningless.

Cheer up, Spence! You’re just hitting your quarter-life crisis ten years early! My theory is she’s trying to pep herself up with this darling sunflower print, but it doesn’t seem to be doing the trick. And if a pattern that precious won’t do anything, what can?

 

Aria’s sure not gonna do it. She’s developed the theory that Clark is A, probably mostly because Clark has picked up that habit common to characters on this show where they say everything in an ambiguous tone so you’re just sitting there like, “I know he said ‘do you have the time’ but I swear to god his voice was like ‘I like to stalk and torture you and your friends for fun in my free time.’”

And to investigate her theory, she dresses on-theme in a trench coat. Check those gorgeous lace sleeves—they might be impractical on a coat (unless your torso is constantly cold and your arms are always too hot?), but gosh they’re pretty.

 

The outfit under the coat is, you know, very Aria.

The sequins under the coat are a nice touch of sparkle, but the leopard mini is a little bit much, no?

 

She’s at least better dressed than the Aria doll that A made.

For once I am in complete agreement with Ezra Fitz (“that’s...very disturbing”), which is a sentence I hope to never type again.

 

Emily’s off on her own for most of this week, gazing deeply into Sara’s eyes and asking if maybe she’d like to run away with her. And now that she’s living with her crush, she is upping her wardrobe game.

So usually when I’m recapping an Emily outfit I just go, “Emily’s so pretty! This outfit is boring but she’s so pretty!” But this is...not boring? I just don’t know? Like...it’s leather short overalls and in theory I am completely opposed (think about how awful it would be when your legs got sweaty, for one), but also I think she’s kind of pulling them off? You definitely need Shay Mitchell’s legs to make this work, though. (Maybe she has magical powers and just doesn’t get sweaty legs.) And it’s always nice to see what happens when Emily decides to put effort into her clothes. She’s come a long way from the polo shirts and denim minis of the first season.

 

So absent Emily, the other three Liars break into the lab where Leslie works to investigate, in their best black sleuthing jackets. Hanna, Queen of the Ep, planned to go with this fierce black leather.

But, you know. Priorities.

 

So for the investigation itself she’s wearing black sequins.

Sequins are not the stealthiest of fabrics, but in this case they’re SYMBOLIC because having finally made out with her hot boyfriend Hanna has regained her old sparkle. Plus what’s she gonna wear, a plain black T? Please. This is Pretty Little Liars we’re talking about.

 

Spencer’s sleuthing jacket is almost impossible to see, but it’s what you’d expect: structured, brass buttons, etc. 

She’s no Hanna this week, but she does make some important discoveries. “Bitch chipped us” may not be quite as iconic as “Bitch can see,” but it’s up there.

 

And Aria’s in this watercolor-y black-and-white striped.

Ironically less suitable for sleuthing than the trench she wore earlier in the episode, but it’s a great shape on her, and that exposed zipper down the side is a lovely touch. Aria’s knocking the jackets out of the park this week.

Pretty Little Liars: No Stone Unturned

And By Bitch, We're Pretty Sure They Mean Sara: Part 2 of 2

 

While the PLLs are investigating, their parents and significant others do the traditional “how worried should we be about our loved being subjected to constant psychological torture?” song and dance.

Mona, much like her erstwhile bestie, actually gets shit done. She shows up at the lab and informs the Liars that Charles is definitely still alive, and then saves them from getting busted by campus police.

I’m not super into her outfit, though. That bleached denim vest is a tonal mismatch with the prim pussy bow of her demure blouse. You can be a cowgirl or a secretary, Mona, but don’t be both at once.

 

Ashley decides her move is to give her teenage daughter’s boyfriend a key to the house, reminding us all once again that she’s the parent whose earlier moves included robbing an elderly woman and running over a police officer.

Ashley, whither your competent parenting skills of mere weeks ago? Whither your closetful of tasteful suits? This tiered fuchsia blouse is what a thirteen-year-old would wear to the eighth grade dance in 2003.

 

Ezra’s is to write Aria a recommendation, which seems to violate a number of professional and personal boundaries but that’s really the least of their problems.

A much bigger problem is his shirt with the round neckline. That’s actually a woman’s shirt, right? Like, Ezra was walking by the Macy’s ladies sportswear section and saw that bad boy and was like, “How can I resist?”

 

Caleb’s move is to make out with Hanna, which, valid.

His hoodie is fine, pretty much business as usual for him. He’s not gratuitously shirtless, so it’s not really worth writing home about.

 

Sara is gratuitously shirtless, though, because that girl has game.

She may have been locked in a bunker for two years, but she knows how to break down a girl’s willpower: take off your shirt and ask her to rub cream in your back.

 

For her first day as a teen programmer, she takes Emily’s advice and wears this plaid...thing.

Emily likes her girls dressed like West Hollywood lesbians circa 1985, is my takeaway.

 

Having learned that bitch chipped them, Emily goes to see if Sara’s been chipped too, but before she can, Sara distracts her with a kiss.

Is she overcome with love for Emily? Or is this merely a distraction to keep Emily from realizing that Sara doesn’t have a chip because Sara is A???

 

I’m still liking Sara best of all our current crop of A suspects (why do we never see this conveniently evil mother of hers, huh?), but if she faked her own kidnapping I have no idea what her motive could be. But Clark and Leslie are both obvious red herrings, and most of our other favorite shady characters have been in Out of Town all season. Who’s your pick?

Pretty Little Liars: No Stone Unturned

So, it turns out Leslie isn't A, she's just a former mental patient trying to get through the day like a normal person with a normal life OKAY? God. In other non-news, Emily and Sara smooch (raise your glass of TV wine if you saw that coming), Spencer does not want to be valedictorian, Aria goes back to the Rosewood Etsy shop trash dump, and Hanna is microchipped with a GPS tracking device. Actually, all of the PLLs are, which explains how A knows their every move. Oh! And Mr. D gets a birthday card from Charlie. Guess who's TOTALLY NOT DEAD?

 

Only in Rosewood
Can a teenager charm her way into stealing a car from the valet. Ok, that didn't technically happen in Rosewood, BUT STILL. Also, I love how the writers are all "to hell with school" and aren't even bother to showing them go to class anymore. They know the charade is over.

Return of a Minor Major Character
Dean is still sneaking around, and we didn't actually see Lesli, but Hanna and Spencer did break into her car, so, she was there in spirit, I guess?

Best Outfit
It was slim pickings this week, so I'm going to give Aria's rat-scarf (shown here, accessorized with horrified expression) an honorable mention.

Best A Message
One creepy Aria doll with a stick in the eye, coming right up!

Current A Suspect

CHARLES IS TOTALLY NOT DEAD. KNEW IT.

 

Check back on Friday for Constance's recap of the ho-hum fashions and their live animal accessories.

Pretty Little Liars: She's No Angel

Take Care of Your Good China: Part 1 of 2

You guys, they’re just straight up messing with us at this point. The piles on piles of creepy dolls in that junk yard? That other creepy doll floating in the murky bathwater at Radley? The girl from The Ring that Sia video in the cold open? Pretty Little Liars is just nightmare fuel at this point. Luckily, all of our girls have at least one fantastic outfit this week—except for Emily, who’s channeling all of her style energy into ill-advised tattoo choices.

 

Real talk, I am not in love with this Ring-style cold open. PLL takes place in a Hitchcock/film noir universe, no? Japanese horror is a tonal mismatch.

Plus, Spencer’s dream outfit is totally blah. Conscious Spencer Hastings has not worn a heather-gray T-shirt for non-exercise purposes since the second grade, and no one will ever convince me otherwise. Unconscious Spencer Hastings needs to get on that level.

 

But she redeems herself the next day, I assume because she knew Hanna was about to break out the big guns and wanted to make sure she wasn’t outdone.

Look at these two flaw-free queens. From the buckle of Spencer’s waist-cinching belt to the saffron-yellow strap of Hanna’s Cambridge satchel, every single detail is on point.

 

And check out Spencer’s boots!

No one does equestrian like this girl.

 

Post-Dollhouse Hanna has given up on her grunge phase to return to her Homecoming Queen fashion roots, and I have to say, I am all in favor of it.

The black crop top keeps the pineapples and matching bag and oversized beads from getting too twee, but there’s still way more whimsy in this outfit than she was giving us this time last season.

 

Between the two of them, they determine that (a) they have to break into Radley to see if they can confirm the official DeLaurentis “Charles is totally dead, for real” story, and (b) Spencer is high af off her single pot cookie. Sadly, they downgrade the hell out of their outfits for this mission.

Props to Hanna for her fierce leather jacket, but why the extraneous zippers on the pants? We were doing so well at moving past the pretentious grunge phase! Spencer’s Victorian nightie of a dress is at least on theme for Radley’s brand of Victorian gothic horror, but it’s also shapeless and unflattering.

 

Meanwhile, Emily has decided that Sara has to get legally emancipated from your mother. Find your chill, Emily. You met this girl like two days ago. You don’t know if her mother is anywhere near as bad as she says.

This outfit is the Emily standard: nothing special, just nondescript enough to avoid pulling focus from her perfect face. Bonus points for that dangly pendant.

 

She fancies things up a little with her off-the-shoulder T, but her main focus once Sara’s paperwork goes through is on a more permanent accessory.

Oh, Em. This is a terrible idea. Here are the cardinal rules for getting a tattoo: (1) Do not do it on a whim. (2) Under no circumstances get a tattoo in a language you cannot read. If you’re lucky it will be gibberish; if you are unlucky it will say “tofu.” And the Japanese character for bravery? Come on, Emily, that’s just tacky.

 

Meanwhile, Aria’s keeping things Aria with her new love interest/mentor, Clark the photographer.

Bonus points to Clark for a shirt with a whimsical pattern and a decent fit; minus points for the baggy camo pants. Aria’s bib top is not a flattering shape for anyone (am I nuts or is it giving her boobs a unibrow?), but I do like that shade of pink on her.

 

They head off to be pretentious at the local junk yard, where they make a shocking discovery: Rosewood’s trash consists entirely of creepy dolls. Just one creepy doll piled on top of another, that’s all their garbage is, with the occasional nightmarish clown statue thrown in for variety but mostly just creepy old-time-y dolls.

I hope Aria takes comfort in her jacket. That rich chocolate brown and perfect fit should make up for any number of glassy-eyed horror show doll parades.

 

But it’s nowhere near as good as the outfit she breaks out the next day. This sweet little skater dress with the vibrant stripes? I am in love.

And she can take comfort in finding this week’s Clue! Clark accidentally snaps a shot of A in profile, proving that A . . . is a girl.

Pretty Little Liars: She's No Angel

Who Gives a Crap What You Think, You Bag of Hair? Part 2 of 2

After her two years in the Dollhouse Sara is still working her way up to 2010 fashion, this week via the ‘80s.

The tied-off button-up/ripped skinny jeans combo is very Dirty Dancing, but it works with her haircut.

 

But come on, Sara, did you have to lead the ill-advised tattoo charge? The ill-advised lower back tattoo charge, no less? 

The rest of the outfit is fine, it’s whatever, but I can’t get behind impulse tattoos. Impulse emancipations are also maybe not such a hot idea, for that matter.

 

Meanwhile, Ali spends most of this week sulking in her house.

You can tell she’s sulking because that’s a sweatshirt, and Alison DeLaurentis, former Queen of Rosewood High, would never. (The sweatshirt has a rose on it, btw. Those of you following Rosewatch 2k15, make a note.)

 

She does spruce herself up a bit when the new cop/statutory rapist comes to visit. That shade of royal blue is great with her new darker hair.

There’s also a bit where they try to sell us on the idea that Lorenzo is close to Alison’s age, which, they maybe shouldn’t have used the only member of their teen cast who’s actually played by a teenager to try that line on. Lorenzo’s gotta be what, in his mid to late twenties? Sasha Pieterse is nineteen and looks it.

 

Ali might be having an off week, but Mona is definitely up to something. Her accessories say so.

Those shades say, “I have schemes to scheme and plots to plot.”

 

And the beret says, “I am weaving a spider’s web of deception and intrigue.”

But what’s her plan? The show wants us to think she’s under Lesli’s sway, but I have to think that Mona’s secretly calling the shots here.

 

I mean, come on. Lesli’s in yellow. That’s only a power color if you play it as well as Hanna did this week. Lesli is not on that level.

And now that Spencer and Hanna have proven that Lesli did a stint at Radley, they’re onto her. And this early in the season, that means she’s definitely a red herring.

 

So if A is a girl, and Charles is dead, then who is A? And how does Charles fit into everything? Maybe A is Cece and she loved Charles and that’s why she became soul sisters/doppelgangers with Alison? Or A could be Wren in a wig and a padded bra, and it turns out that he’s actually Charles and he faked his own death! Or what if A is Sara, and her captivity in the Dollhouse was just a red herring of its own? Hit us up in the comments with your theories, and come back next week for more #SummerofAmbiguity.