Texts From A: In Which I Yell About Spencer So Much

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Hello, friends, and welcome back to Texts From A, where I’m watching Pretty Little Liars for the first time and telling you all about it. This post covers episodes 18 and 19 of season one, and…hooboy. It’s a lot. I had to do a lot of pausing and venting and agh!!

Let’s dive right in. It’s gonna be kind of a long one.

Aria:
  • Aria had probably one of the easier times in these episodes, which isn’t saying much! And of course it almost all involved Fitz.
  • He’s directing a school play, and Aria gets him to make her stage manager so they can have an excuse to spend more time together without it looking weird.
    • She calls him “Ezra” while addressing other students during a rehearsal and it made me feel so awkward that I had to fast forward through the rest.
  • Then there’s this whole thing where Fitz goes out for a beer with her dad. Byron encourages him to think about teaching in college instead so he has more time to write (foreshadowing into what the series goes into after they graduate? I assume it continues after high school, it is seven freaking seasons).
  • Byron also says something about how Aria’s looking at colleges in California.
    • This makes Fitz super insecure about her leaving, and instead of talking to her about it, he acts passive aggressively towards her for multiple days.
      • Maybe there’s a reason he prefers to date teenagers.
    • He does eventually tell her what his problem is in the most combative way possible.
    • And they do eventually make up after Aria gives some big passionate speech about how they shouldn’t be worrying about the future, because it’s not guaranteed, and they should appreciate what they have now.
  • The next issue with Fitz – it’s all Fitz issues – is that he’s helping Jenna enter a short story contest by editing her work.
    • He goes on and on to Aria about how good Jenna’s writing is and how strong she is for getting through the accident that left her blind.
      • (Apparently there’s also strong allusions in Jenna’s story to Toby having purposely set the fire.)
    • Fitz asks Aria a bunch of questions about Jenna and the accident that she has to keep dodging.
    • When she tells Emily how guilty she feels about not telling him about the infamous Jenna Thing, Emily encourages her to tell him.
    • …I don’t think she checks in with Spencer or Hanna.
  • To Fitz’s credit, when Aria tells him that she was there the night Alison threw firecrackers into the garage and blinded Jenna, he comforts her and doesn’t treat her super weird.
Hanna!
  • My sweet daughter finally has some good things happen!
  • I mean it starts with Hanna’s mom getting suspicious because food is going missing, and Hanna trying to cover it up by saying Caleb comes over sometimes (not the truth about him living in the basement).
    • Ashley is super not okay with Caleb. She thinks he’s Bad News.
  • Caleb offers to leave, Hanna gets him to stay, there’s a wacky series of events that leads to them being in the shower together, and later, KISSING.
  • A LOT OF KISSING.
  • A LOT OF KISSING UNTIL HER MOM CATCHES THEM.
    • …and also she finds his stuff in the basement and kicks him out.
  • So Hanna and Caleb go camping…somewhere. Hanna sets up the tent because apparently she got very good at outdoorsy things while spending five summers at fat camp.
    • Caleb, touched that Hanna tells him about her days as Hefty Hanna (did I ever tell you guys that was her nickname? Jesus) tells her about his family.
    • Namely that he doesn’t know his dad, his mom abandoned him when he was 5, and the last he heard from her was a birthday card when he was 10.
  • They make out in the tent and may or may not have sex. It’s UNCLEAR.
  • Hanna comes home the next morning to find her mom super freaked out and angry because she didn’t know where Hanna was.
    • Ashley thinks that if Caleb’s home situation is that bad, then he should just be placed with new foster parents.
      • Hanna accuses her of not being as understanding as she should be, when she herself was in a really tight situation.
        • I think she’s referring to the whole bank-robbery fiasco here, but I wonder if there’s something more?
      • Ashley surprises me and Hanna and all of us by inviting Caleb over for dinner, inviting him to stay in the guest room for a short time, and telling him he can call her Ashley.
      • That’s when Caleb goes outside to call someone. We don’t know who. All we knows is his side of the conversation:
        • “I can’t do this anymore. It’s over. I’m out.”
      • I AM STRESSED OUT ABOUT THIS. Is it A? Is it that creepy fake-nephew of Mrs. Potter’s trying to catch Ashley in some theft? We haven’t seen Detective Creeper in awhile, is it him? Is it someone else entirely?
Emily:
  • These episodes had a shameful lack of Emily. I mean, she was there, she just wasn’t the focus, and I can always use more Emily in my life.
  • There’s two main parts of her story happening here: Paige and Toby.
  • Let’s start with Toby. It’s been awhile since we saw Emily and Toby together.
    • Last we did see them, Emily was trying to tell him that she didn’t turn him in – and Toby wasn’t sure if he believed her.
    • She goes to see him again now that he’s off house arrest. He tells her that he found out who turned him in. It was Jenna, trying to keep him home and under her control.
    • Emily offers to take him out to breakfast as friends, to celebrate his freedom.
      • But when she goes to get him the next morning, he’s not there. Jenna is, creepily playing her flute, and she tells Emily that Toby is with Spencer.
    • Although Emily never talks about it directly, we see several moments of her realizing/accepting that Toby might be closer to Spencer now than he is to her.
  • And now Paige, the girl from the swim team who kissed her.
    • The others don’t know about that, btw. Spencer sees that Paige is calling Emily and Emily dodges all questions about it.
    • Paige leaves a note in her locker inviting her to what turns out to be a…bar? It’s some kind of bar. I think. I don’t really know bars. It looks like a bar.
      • This is just confusing to me because of the whole “they’re 16” thing.
      • They compare their various gay experiences.
        • Emily keeps talking about Maya as if they’re 100% broken up and Maya is out of her life, but we never see that in the show. We see Emily have one slightly weird phone call with Maya, decide it means Maya is done with her instead of, idk, in forced rehab.
        • Wasn’t she only supposed to be there for like three months?? Seriously what is happening here.
      • Paige and Emily do karaoke together and that’s cute even if I’m bitter about Maya.
      • They also do kissing, and that’s also nice, even if, well – you know.
    • They go on a picnic!
      • Which is also sweet and nice and good, but then Paige talks about all the ways in which she can’t be seen with Emily.
      • Emily gets it, but it also hurts, and she decides that she doesn’t want to have to hide like that. She tells Paige that they’d probably be better off as friends.
    • I suspect this isn’t the last we’re seeing of Paige, but who knows! Maybe she’ll disappear like Maya!
Oh, boy. Get ready. Now we’re moving on to Spencer:
  • Spencer had some BUSY BUSY EPISODES and I’m gonna try real hard to condense it.
  • The biggest problem is Ian, but there’s also all this stuff with Toby and Jenna and POLICE and AAAAHH.
  • Okay okay okay. So, Ian. First off, he’s claiming that Alison stalked him and that he always told her to get lost.
    • Which doesn’t exactly line up with the video the girls saw of him and Alison.
    • We also get flashbacks to Alison taking them to a frat party, which just happens to have been Ian’s frat. This is when he’s dating Melissa, but they see him go upstairs with a drunk girl.
    • A drunk girl who later ends up “falling” down the stairs. She lives, but…
      • …there’s the theory that if he killed Alison, she wasn’t the first girl he hurt.
      • There’s also a theory that maybe Alison pushed the girl, for getting between her and Ian.
    • Spencer and Emily see Ian talking to Jenna – they didn’t even know they knew each other, but he gives her a bag before they part ways.
      • Spencer gets Toby to steal Jenna’s phone so they can look at her recent calls.
        • I feel some type of way about this given that Spencer knows Jenna abuses Toby for every slight infraction.
        • Hanna asks Caleb to hack into her phone, but he can’t. He’s also questioning why they want into her phone in the first place.
          • …Wait, why couldn’t hacker extraordinaire Caleb get into that phone? WAS IT JENNA HE WAS TALKING TO?
          • Shit, focus, Sarah, focus.
        • After returning her phone, Toby decides it would be best if he got out of the house for a couple days until his parents return.
          • Spencer makes a comment about how he never talks about his parents right around the time I was thinking, “Oh, wait, yeah, he must have parents, right? He’s like 16, too.”
        • Spencer takes him to a motel, but before she leaves, she hears flute music.
          • It’s just like the music Emily heard Jenna playing.
          • Spencer follows the music and looks through the window of a room to see the bag Ian gave Jenna sitting on the bed.
            • …Also it’s room 214. (Please refer to last week’s post for the significance of this.)
          • Spencer ends up bribing a maid so that she and Toby can get into the room.
            • They find Jenna’s sunglasses, and the bag – but it’s empty.
          • Spencer stays the night with Toby so they can spy on Jenna. They play Scrabble, he kicks her ass, it’s making me ship it.
            • They also sleep in the same bed and wake up spooning, so, you know, obviously I was not imagining the chemistry from last time.
          • They hear the flute again. They rush out and find the room door open. Inside, a CD player with the flute music, and that infamous bag sitting on the bed, full of ice, with a note.
            • “You’re getting colder. -A”
              • Toby asks who A is, and Spencer just says she has no idea.
            • OH ALSO TOBY AND SPENCER TOTALLY KISS.
          • THAT’S NOT ALL. During one of the rehearsals for that play Fitz is directing, Spencer finds a golf trophy among the props. It has Ian’s name on it and stains that look like blood.
            • For reasons I have to put up to these girls all deeply needing an answer to the murder of their best friend and all the stalking from A, they decide this is it, this is the murder weapon. Ian must have put it there because who would ever think to look in some school props for a murder weapon?
            • They take it to the police, and seem to think this means it’s all solved. Case closed. Ali can rest in peace.
              • LOL NOPE.
            • A cop comes to pick them up. He says the trophy is fake, and the blood is rat blood.
              • WOW I AM SHOCKED THIS CONVENIENT MURDER WEAPON WAS FAKE WHEN Y’ALL HAVE A CREEPY STALKER WHO FREQUENTLY FAKES EVIDENCE.
              • They get a text from A: “Rat me out, your blood’s next.”

 

I have to break out now to tell you that at the end of that episode, we see that A has four cages, each labeled with one of their names (Aria, Hanna, Emily, Spencer), each one containing a rat.

…Except for Spencer’s. The rat in her cage is missing.

The episode ends on A watching a recording of Emily, Aria, and Hanna reading that text. It’s clearly filmed from nearby. A watches their stalker-video while eating popcorn, because A is super that bitch.

When I started the series, Spencer was probably the one I cared the least about, and now I feel utterly consumed with the need to protect her. This show’s done a damn good job of getting me attached to these girls.

I’m also getting more and more stressed wondering if I’m really going to have to get through another six seasons before I know who A is.

UGH.

Screenshots from: https://prettylittleliars.fandom.com
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