TV Recap: Pretty Little Liars, ‘Who’s in the Box’ (Winter Premiere)

Written Kelly Duncan


I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t be any happier to have my Pretty Little Liars back. Months have passed and no other show has the same soapy drama that I look forward to on my Tuesday nights.

Just when I thought there weren’t any more twists or turns possible for Pretty Little Liars to take — they managed to find an abundance of them. Now, the last time we saw the liars they were in Ravenswood hunting down Redcoat, revealing to us that Ezra (Ian Harding) (I still can’t handle this) is “A,” and proving that Ali (Sasha Pieterse) truly is alive. Kicking off the winter premiere we’re presented with a whole new host of mysteries — the biggest question being, who is actually in Ali’s coffin? As pointed out by Hanna, if they can identify the body and find a connection between her and Ali they can potentially answer all of their questions.

We’ll start off with something simple. As always, Toby (Keegan Allen) is on a quest to prove that his mother didn’t actually commit suicide while she was in Radley. After grilling a fair amount of former Radley employees, Toby’s suspicions are proven to be correct. With Spencer’s (Troian Bellisario) lawyer-like abilities and the threat of bad PR via the Internet, Spencer and Toby convince one of the top dog’s at the pharmaceutical company that owns Radley to admit that paperwork had been doctored and Mrs. Cavanaugh’s death was accidental. For an unknown reason this sparks an interest in Mr. Hastings (Nolan North) who has now decided he wants to take Radley down. While I have never been keen on Toby’s storyline I am incredibly interested to see what Mr. Hastings has at stake here. He never seems to show up unless it’s to tell Spencer to stay away from anything involving Ali or the DiLaurentis’. Which is pretty funny considering everything she does is connected to Ali in one way or another.

In other news, Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) came back from Ravenswood to visit Hanna. After a couple of magical days together things take a turn for the worse when Caleb answers every question Hanna has for him with, “…it’s complicated.” They seem to break up, without actually saying so. I know he has to leave because he’s the lead in the PLL spin-off, Ravenswood, but I expect better answers from him. Luckily, Hanna (Ashley Benson) has plenty of other things to keep her mind off of Caleb and her broken heart. In an effort to figure out who is in Ali’s place in the crypt, she has taken to the internet searching for other girls who disappeared around the same time as Ali. She finds another girl, Sarah Harvey, who has a similar look as Ali. She reaches out to Sarah’s friends to meet up for coffee under the guise of a support group. The girls who show up are essentially mirror images of our little liars. This is a plot twist I was not expecting. The only person who really has anything to gain from murdering this Sarah girl is Ali herself. But, if she’s been in hiding, well… murder would be a rather difficult thing to pull off.

Last, but not least, we get to deal with Ezra and all of the excitement he will be bringing to the season. Mona (Janel Parrish), of all people, bumps into Ezra on the street while he’s checking out some books at a sidewalk sale. She uses the opportunity to start comparing him to his reading list for class. All books that involve, masks and revenge — the most current being, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. She clearly thinks that she has caught Ezra and she wants him to know it. In true Mona fashion, she uses lots of quotes but never fully accuses him. What she isn’t expecting is for him to give it right back and she is clearly freaked out. I know it sounds crazy, but I’m still holding out hope that Ezra is more of a puppet than the master. Even knowing what I know about him he still managed to be incredibly endearing. I know, it’s crazy.

Our last big bit of business, of course, is Aria (Lucy Hale) and Ezra. He’s reached out to her to apologize for the way he treated her during their relationship, which I don’t even think was so bad. But, that’s just me. Anyway, Aria decides to go meet with him somewhere away from school and magically, Ezra has a friend with a cabin without internet or cell service that they can use whenever. This will be their new meeting place. Even though she is still seeing Jake, Ezra and Aria make out, and presumably more in this secluded little cabin. Afterwards, Aria is staring out a window into the woods, we catch an incredibly creepy Ezra staring at Aria and then at a special floor board that seems like you could potentially fit a few CD’s in. Later on, we see a dark figure open it up and it turns out to be a whole lot more. My guess, “A’s” new lair.

All this drama and intrigue. It’s almost too much too handle. Almost. I have no doubts that the rest of this season is going to be amazing.

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