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Friday
Jul252014

Pretty Little Liars: The Silence of E. Lamb

Part 1 of 2: Dinner Parties and Vodka Waters

Nothing else matters this episode because...Hanna and Caleb are back together! Or, at least, they're making out and exchanging adorable comments. I guess we can erase Ravenswood from memory, and know that all is right again in Rosewood. Except not really. A's back and worse than ever (see: Toby's house, on fire), Ali's skulking around in the dark, we still haven’t seen a return of Gratuitous Male Shirtlessness, and Bethany Young is proving to be more than just the girl in Ali's grave. Speaking of a Twists That Make An Old Plot Actually Relevant, Miss Young may have been the "fragile patient" who was on the roof of Radley when Toby's mom died. Remember that? Me neither, but I. Marlene King never forgets.

 

We start the episode with another meeting in the Liars' favorite super-secret meeting spot — the girl’s bathroom.

The girls’ outfits are on point this week, which is a good thing considering they pretty much wear the same outfit the whole episode. Not ok, ABC Family. NOT. OK.

 

After her recent encounter with A, Ali worries about the resulting bruises and the questions that may come up. Fortunately, concealer + a really cute scarf is all she needs to cover them up. 

Unfortunately, people tend to hide in those bathroom stalls. Donna LaDonna Sydney is really starting to fit in at Rosewood — she’s got the sneaky part down pat, and is also sporting the swim team’s usual drapey earth-tones.

 

Em’s also in her usual this week: jeans, a sweatshirt, and a moderately interesting jacket.

We'll get to Mona's animal situation in Part 2.

 

But back to Ali, who’s taking a test in order to get back into Rosewood High. She’s also swapped out her cute scarf for a cute necklace. Continuity issue, or did she decide to ditch the scarf? I'm still loving the rest of her outfit — the white blazer with printed shoulder pads pairs nicely with her floral top. Nice to see her out of sundresses/flashback filter.

 

And she even dressed up for dinner with Emily’s mom, exchanging the jeans for a flared black skirt. Which is more than I can say for Hanna, who showed up in the same outfit she wore to school.

 

It seems that with Ali’s homecoming, Hanna's given up on the skirts, sequins, and pink and gone for a rocker chic look instead. No more politician wives' cardigans — in their place are amaze leather jackets and speckled jeans. Love.

 

The new hair and clothes aren’t the only new things about Hanna…she's gone and picked up a drinking habit.

Sidenote, why was there vodka on the bar cart if Pam was the only adult? I’d always pegged her as more of a wino.

 

But she totally plays the part of perfect hostess to a tee. I mean, who lugs a bar cart out to the porch for dinner with a bunch of teenagers?

"Because if you're going to drink I'd rather you do it in the house."

 

Anyway, The Most Awkward Dinner Party Ever. Alternately titled: Hanna's drunk, Ali's making shit up, Pam's not buying it, and Em's in the middle of it all.

 

After getting kicked out of Emily's house for too much drinky, Hanna sobers up at the Brew. Where she runs into Caleb! You guys, how perfect do they look? Caleb brings the usual in a fitted black jacket, but I'll be the first to admit, I miss the long hair.

But did anyone else wonder why Caleb was buying so many brownies? Late night study snack or is he feeding a crowd?

No matter, this made the whole episode for me. Yay, Team Haleb!

Friday
Jul252014

Pretty Little Liars: The Silence of E. Lamb

Part 2 of 2: Lions and Lambs

So, let's revisit this outfit. I mean, it's official: Mona owns every animal print, in every color, ever. She’s also really good at color coordinating — the neon green in the print matches her striped collar, and the blue spots of her leopard sweater match both her skirt and her earrings. Anyone who matches that much must have something to hide.

 

Speaking of matching, Aria's outfit was nicely coordinated (if not blurry, sorry 'bout that) this week, with pink and white stripes, black and white stripes, and a printed white skirt. I think it's the most normal outfit she's worn in weeks.

 

Aria was also the only one who had a wardrobe change this episode, going from the above to a striped tank and jeans for her volunteer shift at Radley. She's the new Spencer! Except instead of volunteering to boost her college applications, she's volunteering to get the dirt on Bethany Young, the girl who was found in Ali's grave.

Anyway, I totally thought she was wearing a denim romper (a la Spencer’s corduroy jumper last week)…

 

…but no! It’s just a smock. Which she needs for art class, which just so happened to fall on her first day of volunteering. I mean, it only took Aria one day to find Bethany Young’s old roommate and steal Bethany’s old sketchbook? Impressive. "A" may have inadvertently given these girls a lot of practice in sneaking around. Now if only they would stop having superseekrit meetings in bathrooms.

Also, meet Bethany's former roommate, who apparently has a thing for sassy graphic tees. Maybe she and Hanna can be new fashion besties?

 

When the most groundbreaking thing about Aria’s outfit is her leopard-print bag, you know something is wrong. Even her jewelery is simple! What's going on, honeychild? You wanna talk about it?

 

Maybe it’s the aftermath of her *ahem* "slip" with Ezra? Who isn't deviating from his invalid-in-recovery steez this episode. Spencer helps the still-injured Ezra move all his surveillance stuff (sidenote: he has a LOT of surveillance stuff) out of his apartment. Spencer makes good use of the cameras, setting one up to watch her own sister.

 

Which totally works out in her favor, because MelissaCam catches Ali wearing the Sad Hat. And also sneaking around Spencer’s backyard — is she attempting another escape?

 

Regardless, I would set up a hidden camera, too, if my sister was casually throwing away dead rats after a friend just got one in her locker. And without gloves? Ew. Is Melissa really helping Mona? Or A? Or is she just killing time before university starts again (does she still go to university?)

Maybe she's merely trying to get her parents back together? I'm confused. As is Melissa’s outfit. The gold bar necklace says simple and sophisticated, while the silky draped top shrieks evening cocktails, but the chambray says "I'm here to clean up the rats."

 

On the opposite end, Spencer’s outfit is well put together, though it’s missing her signature animal print. Thumbs up for the wide striped top, which she paired with a cute geometric print skirt and the best military trench coat. Spencer's trench collection rivals any detective's, and I'm jealous.

Also loving (and lusting after) her gorgeous black and white, with a pop of turquoise, backpack. It probably doesn't fit any of her books, but these girls don't really go to school, do they?

 

One thing's probably for certain: A doesn't go to school. No one would be able to do algebra homework and learn about the War of 1812 while sifting through everyone's mail, opening it, and resealing it. Either A's not a student, or he/she really needs another hobby.

 

But A's creepy letter-opening skills revealed one thing: we've got a wedding on the way! I'm mostly excited for Aria's bridesmaid dress, because knowing Aria, it will probably have feathers, be very bright, or combine multiple prints and patterns. Or all three.

Wednesday
Jul232014

Pretty Little Liars: The Silence of E. Lamb

Ali continues to work the emotionally manipulative vibe, and it's driving Hanna to drink like a bad After School Special. Not everyone in Rosewood is buying Ali's kidnapping story, and Drunk Hanna is calling Ali on her shit. Aria volunteers at Radley, and finds The Girl in the Yard's roommate and sketchbook pretty damn fast. Of course, Eddie is rightfully suspicious that she's there just to volunteer. He's also not blind, and no doubt recognizes Aria from when she visited Spencer at Radley, so he gives Ezra a call. Then, something something Toby's mom? Don't know, still don't care. Spencer helps Ezra move the equipment he used to spy on her and her friends. She was almost pissed about it, until she realized she could borrow some gear to set up a MelissaCam outside of her house. Good thing, since MelissaCam caught Ali sneaking around Spencer's yard like somone who wasn't just strangled in her own living room. And DLD is showing up all over the place playing dumb, like she doesn't know full well what the score is with these girls. She better not be a random A like Shana. 

 

Only in Rosewood Moment
So many of these this week. Only in Rosewood can Aria get in and out of a psychiatric hospital at her own leisure, like there's no security or locks. Only here can a teen drink vodka at the dinner table and no one notices. And only here is there a test that lets you get out of high school forever. 

Random Return of Minor Character
Emily's mom returns from wherever she's been with advice that maybe it's not Emily's job to save Ali. You know, the kind of momtalk that would have been helpful four seasons ago, before the giant body count and PTSD. 

Best outfit
Not an amazing week. I think Drunk Hanna's rocker chick is my favourite this week, mostly because of that leather jacket.

Best "A" msg
"New York, New York is a hell of a town. Ali's keeping secrets, maybe that's because of Hanna's big mouth." Not A's best work to date, but there you have it. 

Current A Team Suspect
Someone who loves clowns and reading mail and crashing engagement parties? Come on I.Marlene, I need more clues. 

 

Check in on Friday for Steph's full recap.

Friday
Jul182014

Pretty Little Liars: Run, Ali, Run

Part 1 of 2: Express Train to Crazy Town

So A's back in town, or it's a different A, or Shana was never A, or something because everyone's getting ominous texts again. The latest twist is that A has discovered Snapchat and is now sending self-destructing texts. Also destructing? Spencer, who's too busy Parent Trapping her parents to worry about her BF's homeless sitch. I'm still sort of thrown when Ezra starts talking knowledgeably about A and Ali and things, but not as thrown as Aria is when she's reminded he still has hidden cameras monitoring his apartment and also, he's a pedo stalker. Meanwhile in Blonde Land, Ali tries to skip town and Hanna's only too happy to help make her doppelganger exit stage left. But then, Ali sudden need to wear a scarf nearly takes her the way of Orphan Black's Aynesley. Emily to the rescue! Are they like a real couple now that one of them has saved the other from murder? On this show, that's like going FB official.

 

This was a fun episode, which is amazing considering Spencer wears this same upcycled Girl Scout ensemble for THE ENTIRE HOUR.

WTF is even going on here? The jumper would be MAYBE appropriate with a turtleneck and black tights MAYBE, but not with this chambray button-down layering action.

And did she borrow the Sad Hat from Hanna from last week? Will it go from character to character for the rest of the season?

Sisterhood of the Traveling Hat?

 

What's worse: abandoning Spencer for these tween Lindsay Lohan Parent Trap shenanigans, or adding these over-the-knee-socks to an already overdone outfit?

Or is the true crime combining the light brown boots with the black socks? Answer: ALL OF THE ABOVE. NONE OF THIS OUTFIT IS OK. PLEASE TRY AGAIN.

 

This group shot actually shows how, although the girls' aesthetics are increasingly different, they do all still go together as a group. Everyone's got some blue somewhere in their look. Unfortch for Ali, she's bringing blue in this Mary Kay Lady blazer.

Gurl, I know you've been MIA for the last five years (or like two months, PLL time) but in this universe, 17-year-old girls don't run around wearing puff sleeve baby blue blazers. The blazer is extra useless when you see it's been hiding this sweet bird-print top all episode:

I'm also glad to see she's still got her hair game on point, despite her mother's death and the recent strangulation attempt. Gotta respect her priorities.

 

Aria starts off in this gorge blue patterned dress from last week. What is it about adding pockets to a dress that makes me love it 10,000% more?

And what is it about a championship wrestling-sized belt that makes me like it less? But the look still gets snaps from me, because of the pockets AND this side braid action. 

If only Aria could channel her inner Katniss and/or Queen Elsa and take control of her life for once.

 

Because? After last week's slip (or as she noted to Spencer, "two slips", ahem) she's back on the express train to Crazy Town, aka Ezria round 150. She is also wearing this outfit, which we need to discuss. At first glance, it looks like some sort of tie-dyed sleeveless turtleneck scenario with mismatched nautical stripe belt and blue skirt.

But look a little closer, and you'll see that it's a sheer blue maxi skirt with side slits...

... oh, and did I mention that her top has got a giant cat face on it, with eyes just above her nerps?

Because: that.

 

But really, it's not a day that ends with "-day" if Aria's not stomping around in a multitude of animal prints. What's that you say? She's only got the one print on her top? But you haven't seen her purse yet:

If she really wants to keep her undercover lover undercover, she may want to stop leaving accessories around that basically scream I BELONG TO ARIA MONTGOMERY.

 

As much as Caleb thinks the Rosewood PD drive around in clown cars (to be fair, 99% of them do), Lady Cop is back on the case and it takes her like three seconds to suss out that Ezria's toggled their switch to ON.

 

Wouldn't it be ironic for Ezria to be finally called out just as Aria has pulled the plug? And do lady cops really leave that many buttons undone on their tops? And could Ezra's movie poster be any larger or more creepy? Just asking.

Friday
Jul182014

Pretty Little Liars: Run, Ali, Run

Part 2 of 2: Orange is the new Hanna

While Spencer acts out her Hayley Mills fantasies and Aria's collecting tiger print fabric, Hanna deals with Ali's return from the dead the only way she can — via fashion. We first see her in this offbeat hi-lo denim jacket, which is itself a cry for help.

I mean that in the best possible way. Girlfriend's given herself a H-to-T makeover, going from last season's gauzy skirts to this season's Stevie Nicks steez. She looks even better from the front, the better to check out her high rise skinnies and crop top.

 

It seems lucky that Caleb's also embracing a throwback grunge vibe. Travis has no chance against this action.

Sidenote: where is Caleb living? Hanna was like, "Toby said I'd find you here" but are we supposed to recognize this man lair, with its leather chairs and roaring fireplace? Additionally: I think I speak for most of the viewing audience when I say that we will all happily pretend Ravenswood never happened. Seriously, there is no need for the sort of heart-to-heart talk Haleb engaged in this week, bringing up Miranda and Ravenswood and lalalala that never happened.

 

A crucial part of The New Hanna seems to be declaring tourist slogans on her shirt, as her first top says J'aime (that's French for love, you guys, not the name of that Australian schoolgirl — although imaginging Hanna Marin throwing down with Ja'mie would be fairly epic).

 

 

Her next look features a shirt she apparently got in L.A.

Pretty sure she picked up the rest of this either at a Stevie Nicks costume shop OR POSSIBLY from Anthropologie. Between the slouchy army jacket, maxi skirt and fringed messenger bag this is, as they say, A Lot Of Look.

And she's clearly spending more time picking out the perfect grunge-emo ensembles than thinking about her ostensible BF, because when Travis breaks up with her, she looks back at him blankly like, "Have we met?"


Meanwhile, Emily was also on the show. Her looks veered from red jacket thing:

 

To blue jacket thing:

 

To the Great Emily Fields Sidebra Extravaganza 2014:

Oh, right, gurl. That's what you wear after shooting down your straight-but-maybe-bi? longtime crush who is back form the dead. Because nothing says "Please stop throwing yourself at me" like a completely exposed nude lace bra and most of your ribcage.

And intentionally or not, Ali and Emily wore practically matching outfits almost the entire episode. Here, their B&W looks are like mirror images of each other.

Except you know Ali would never show that much gratuitous sidebra. Mainly because she thinks it's still like 2011 and she hadn't heard about the muscle tee trend yet.

 

Actually, Ali's fashion choices literally nearly get her killed this week, as the last-minute scarf addition to her blue blazer ensembe proves too tempting for all the people who want to kill her.

CONTINUITY ALERT: Look back up at the shot of Ali in the black and white dress. Then look back down at her strangulation scene. She wore the black and white dress THE MORNING AFTER she was nearly strangled. No bruises at all? Really, makeup/continuity department? You'd think the morning after near-death by strangulation would be the time a girl would wear a scarf or a turtleneck.

 

As per usz, the episode leaves us with even more questions that we had going in. Questions like: 

Why did Dead Bethany draw this picture of Mrs D being murdered by a spear-wielding demon? And why did Eddie give it to Ezra?

 

Why does a sanitarium that looks like something from a Lemony Snicket book on the outside...

 

... have a website that makes it look like an actual helpful facility for the mentally ill?

 

Did A seriously sign her condolence card for Bethany's family "A"? And why does he or she lurk around in full disguise even when there's nobody else around?

 

But most importantly, what kind of psychiatric centre allows random teen girls to volunteer from off the street? Are they seriously going to let Aria work with actual patients? Has she had any background check done at all? Does she honestly think this is appropriate job interview attire?

Between Aria's total self-absorption, her victim complex, and her wide-eyed looks, I kind of hope this plotline turns into an Orange Is The New Pretty Little Black scenario, with Aria as Piper. And not just because Ezra is already this show's Larry.