Well, it was a bad week for new loves and an even worse week for Alison DiLaurentis
We open on Hanna in the car with Mary Drake, after Hanna’s just escaped from Bunker II. She did this completely without her friends’ help, I feel compelled to add — unless you count Spencer’s ghost. Surprisingly, Mary gives Hanna a ride to Spencer’s, after making sure Hanna was positive about not going to the police. Mary, you’re new to us but you’re not new to Rosewood: You know the police are no good! They have a brief chat about Ali and Jessica DiLaurentis, and Mary eventually says that “Most families have secrets. And sometimes those secrets are actual people.” Hanna asks if she’s “one of those secret people,” and Mary says, “Not anymore!” This makes me think there’s a handful of other “secret people” ready to pop out of the woodwork… Oh, boy.
Things are tense with Hanna and the Liars when she returns — and she and Caleb have a quick chat about how their moment at the end of last season was a mistake. Despite some confusion on Spencer’s part last week, it looks like Spaleb is technically still together: After Spencer admits she should have stopped Hanna before she got kidnapped, Caleb tries to reassure her by comparing Hanna to an aircraft carrier (“lot of firepower, but pretty difficult to maneuver”), then telling her to come to bed.
Meanwhile, Emily is dealing with a barrage of guilt over letting Ali check herself into that treatment facility. She gets a phone call from Ali in the middle of the night asking for help, with sounds of a struggle in the background. The next day, Emily heads straight to the facility, only to find out Ali’s only allowed family visitors from now on. Because she doesn’t yet know he’s evil, she heads straight to Dr. Rollins to complain about not being let in. Rollins doesn’t even try to play it off: “I decided Alison would be better off in isolation right now,” he explains. Great!
Aria’s been pretty cozy with her co-author Ezra since their post-book-sale bang, so she decides to be an adult and break up with Liam. Is there a single viewer out there who was ever rooting for Liam? Bueller? She tells him she has a lot of unresolved things in her life, but assures him it’s not about Ezra. He’s calm but doesn’t seem thrilled, obviously — and then it’s time for Liam’s news. He’s back on the book! Meaning he’ll be working very closely with both Ezra and Aria. “I’d like to see you get something you always wanted… This way we can cross the finish line together,” Liam says. Yeah, this can’t possibly backfire…
Lucas still wants to give Hanna a million-dollar investment and office space for absolutely no reason at all — except that he 100-percent still wants to marry her. She’s not so sure that’s the right move — and while she’s pondering, we get a flashback to Hanna and Jordan’s meet-cute in a New York City bar. She was working tirelessly for her evil boss, and he set his sweaty glass down on her napkin (that had an important phone number on it). She yells, he soothes, and they have an hours-long date right then and there. I don’t have the same aversion to Jordan as I do to Liam, even though I am a lifelong Haleb shipper — anyone else feels the same?
Post-flashback, Hanna books it to New York, where she puts on a slinky red dress and shows up at Jordan’s office for a “hostile takeover.” She seems like she’s really trying to make their relationship work — and they head out to find that bar where they first met. Of course, since it’s New York City and nothing you love ever sticks around, the bar is now gone (sorry, I still miss this amazing pork-bun restaurant that closed for no reason). Hanna takes this as a sign — she desperately needed the bar to be there for things to work out, and since it’s not she gives Jordan back his engagement ring. Okay, I missed a couple of lines here because I was thinking of those pork buns, but did this not seem abrupt? I know she’s going through some stuff right now, but breaking off your engagement over a closed bar? (Yes, I know it’s not really about the bar…) Back in Rosewood, Hanna signs the papers with Lucas. Fashion empire, here she comes?
Aria, Emily, and Spencer confront Elliott Rollins together, who tells them Jason has approved “surgery” for Ali — even though that doesn’t necessarily matter since Rollins has made himself her doctor and her husband. When he leaves to take a phone call, they get a text (on their APPLE WATCHES): “She’s mine now. No take-backs, no do-overs.” Between this stuff and last week, it’s pretty clear A.D./Uber A believed Caleb when he said Ali was Charlotte’s killer… but does this definitely mean that Rollins and A.D. are the same?
Emily decides the best way to get to Ali is through Mary Drake — she is Ali’s aunt, after all. Spencer talks to Mary about being in Radley when Mary comes into Veronica Hastings’ office. She was serious earlier about not being a secret anymore: This woman is popping up in every scene! Mary Drake is not hiding, and strangely enough, it makes me trust her. Although her past is definitely creepy (and not necessarily the truth): Spencer asks why Mary went to Radley, and Mary tells a story about a time when Jessica was babysitting and couldn’t get a 10-month-old baby to stop crying. She called Mary and begged her to help, and when she finally got there, Jessica told her the baby was asleep upstairs and then left to meet up with someone while Mary covered for her. When the parents came home… it turned out the baby was dead. HORRIBLE STORY — and doesn’t it seem slightly familiar to the one about Charles/Charlotte almost drowning baby Ali in the tub? I’m inclined to think maybe Mary and Jessica’s roles were reversed, and baby-suffocating was passed from mother to child.
Liam’s first notes session with Ezra is rough, to say the least. Liam immediately dives into a character critique that’s actually a thinly veiled (and not exactly false) critique of Ezra himself. Liam reads the “character” as “predatory,” and the situation in the book as a Lolita myth. In other words, he’s basically calling Ezra a pedophile, while Ezra tries to argue his character wasn’t that much older than Aria’s character. Ezra tries to ask why Liam’s being so outwardly hostile, but Liam just says he’s trying to protect the book — and both of its authors.
Later, Ezra expresses concern to Aria that every editing session is going to end up like that, then asks what Liam really knows about their relationship. Aria talks to Liam and says she thought they agreed to be adults about this. “He has a way with words,” Liam says. “I used to admire that. Now I’m suspicious. It was a lot of unconnected things I didn’t want to connect.” Eventually, he just comes out and says it: “I think you were seduced by your English teacher when you were in high school.” I know there are a lot of you Ezria fans out there — and I’m sometimes one myself — but it’s kind of nice this stuff is finally coming back out into the open, especially since we learned a few seasons ago that Ezra did know Aria was a teenager when they met. Anyway, Aria basically explains she wouldn’t take back anything about her life, even all the murdered people, because all those events have made her who she is today. Sweet, but also… what?!
Back at Chateau Radley, Emily talks to Mary Drake herself, and eventually convinces her to go to Ali’s sanitarium with her so they can visit. When they get there, Ali’s a little delirious, telling Emily they’re going to miss their flight. And when she sees Mary, she asks, “Mommy, why did you leave me? I woke up, and there was dirt all over me, and you wouldn’t help.” She also says, “You were wrong about Elliott. He’s not like what you said.” Did Mrs. D not trust him? Or did she think he was great, and Ali’s finally realized he doesn’t exactly have her best interests in mind? We don’t get to find out what she meant, though, because Rollins barges in and says, “I didn’t authorize this! Everyone out!” Ali screams, but Rollins flips off the light and closes the door.
“What happened to her?” Emily cries. “She wasn’t like that when we came here.” But Rollins whisks Mary away to have “a word,” and Emily watches their silhouettes fight in a different room. Mary has apparently been calling Rollins for two days, but he says, “Your being here was not part of the plan.” “Neither was what you’re doing to that girl,” Mary shoots back. Elliott says she got what she wanted (the money) and should be satisfied. Does Mary Drake have a heart after all?
Spencer and Caleb have hearts, but can’t quite figure out what to do with them. Spencer gets fired from her D.C. job over text — not a huge shock, since she’s been in Rosewood for months now and everything in their lives has to happen over ominous texts — so she’s drinking alone at home. Caleb comes home, and they briefly check in about Hanna, before Spencer says, “I’m afraid to ask you this, but I really have to. Did we make a mistake, you and me?” Caleb says they didn’t, but then Spencer asks why he’s talking about them in the past tense. Yikes… but I don’t think they’ll be over so soon.
In the final scene, Emily is frantically texting the Liars that Ali is much worse off than they thought. She tells them something’s going on between Mary Drake and Rollins, and then asks, “Is Rollins in charge?” Sure seems like it at this point. But as the other Liars check or ignore their phones, Ali gets something injected into her IV, and someone rolls her down the hall — presumably to the surgery Jason supposedly authorized. What do we think is happening to her? A lobotomy? Something to erase her memory? A freaky cosmetic procedure? The possibilities really do seem endless now that the show is Freeform dark…