Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Pretty Little Liars Rosewood Roundup ("Burn This") [Contributor: Megan Mann]

"Burn This"
Original Airdate: March 1, 2016

Talk about a doozy last week! We now have another player in the game that’s trying to cover up Charlotte’s murder. Caleb took the fall for something he didn’t do! And the new Big Bad was at the Montgomery wedding! I mean, what could possibly be going down in Rosewood this week?

As the girls move Ella back into the Montgomery home, they discuss Ali and Elliot getting hitched. They wonder if she did it for the right reasons or if she’s just desperate for a family now that she’s practically lost every member of hers. Spencer is MIA but Aria thinks it’s just because of the fallout with the Yvonne scandal. They know that if they go to the cops about this new threat, they’re asking for war, which means the parents can’t know. Emily suggests maybe going to Toby, but Hanna quickly shoots that down. Aria shifts the conversation to something happier like wedding pictures. But as they scroll through, they find a series of pictures from Big Bad demanding the killer. Uninvited: party of one, check!

Mr. Hastings makes his triumphant return to discuss the disastrous leak scandal. It turns out the press has discovered Caleb, the social media manager of the Hastings campaign, to be “the one” responsible. You know, Spencer’s boyfriend. Yikes. He thinks it’s best to release a statement distancing herself from him. Spencer doesn’t understand why, but it turns out Toby made a statement in support of Yvonne and took a jab at the Hastings’ underhanded tactics. Papa Hastings doesn’t understand why she’s protecting Caleb (probably because he didn’t do it, but okay). He tells her to think about what she’s going to say to her mom and to Toby. We flash back to Spencer’s dorm where Toby sits brooding as he stirs his coffee. They booth look at her phone and sigh. What could have happened?

Ashley is throwing Hanna’s bridal shower at the hotel. Hanna thinks she should just cancel, but Ashley won’t budge. She’s excited to see all of Hanna’s friends, especially since this is the first time the Liars and Mona are all back in the same town together in years. “Yeah, because of a murder investigation.” Ashley knows that the girls need to be distracted and she might be right.

Aria is at Ezra’s to discuss how they want to move forward with the book. He offers to get them something to eat, but she’s going out with Liam. They awkwardly discuss his finer attributes before Aria changes subjects. Ezra tells her that he talked to Jillian already and he suggested Aria be the cowriter, a sort of man and woman in dialogue narrative. She doesn’t say anything, which makes Ezra nervous that he should have talked to her about it first. Aria is flattered but skeptical. Ezra assures her she’s open to it. Could this be Aria’s big break?

Caleb is having trouble finding a room at the hotel when Ashley sees him across the lobby. He tells her that he’s not staying with the Hastings because they booted him and that he’s also no longer working on the campaign. She asks what happened, but he doesn’t say. She offers to call around to other hotels, but this was his last stop on the Please Let Me Stay Here tour. He starts to walk off, but Ashley stops him and offers to let him stay in their guest room. He declines, probably because he doesn’t want to be around Hanna who he truly loves and we all know wants to get back with. Sorry, Spencer.

Speaking of Spencer, she’s desperately trying to get ahold of Melissa, who the girls are now convinced is the killer. There’s a knock on the door and when she opens it, it’s Toby. He’s angry. No, fuming. He’s asking where Caleb is. Spencer tries to calm him down and let him know that there’s so much about this that he doesn’t know about. Toby doesn’t care. He can’t believe that Caleb would do such a thing. At just the right moment, Caleb walks in. Spencer encourages Caleb to tell Toby the truth, but he remains stoic. Toby has nothing left to do but believe he did it. And then punch him in the face. Classic.

Emily heard a mysterious sound earlier that Ezra explains to her are whistle tips, something placed on an exhaust pipe to make an annoying sound. She’s heard it before, she just doesn’t know where. She called an auto shop to see if anyone has had them installed recently and she thinks it’s Melissa. Guys, this is Melissa Hastings. If she was going to come after you, she wouldn’t have been obvious and driven a car with something as obnoxious as whistle tips. They’re running out of time. And options.

Ashley comes in with a tablet, complaining that she can’t figure out how it controls the whole place. Hanna offers to help and that’s when Ashley mentions the run in with Caleb and how she offered him the guest room when he had no place to stay. This doesn’t sit well with Hanna, causing her to scream that Ashley will always prefer Caleb to Jordan. The two argue and it really just comes down to Hanna projecting her own feelings onto her mother. Not cool.

As she cleans the blood from his face, Spencer tells Caleb he should have just been honest. But what good would that have done? They can’t walk into the police station and blame Creepy Sara when they don’t have enough proof. Spencer starts to panic about their limited time and lack of evidence.

Over a fancy lunch at the hotel, Aria details the conversation she had with Ezra about being a coauthor. At first, Liam seems surprised but when Aria says that Ezra wasn’t even sure he was going to do it, Liam shuts that down and says Ezra knew exactly what he was doing. He apologizes and congratulates her, but she’s not exactly buying it. Things don’t go so well for Spencer either when she runs into Mona. Mona is irate about what has happened and can’t believe that Spencer has now ruined everything she has worked for. Ouch. Lunchtime is not the best time in Rosewood.

After the lunch fiasco, Aria sits down with Ezra to get to work, but she has to ask him why he did what he did, why he’s giving her this opportunity. Poor Ezra is still so torn up about losing Nicole and trying to find his place in this new reality and Aria doesn’t have that problem. It would help both his writing and his mental state if she were there with him along the way. There’s a knock on the door. Tanner is there asking to speak to Aria. Two witnesses from the Two Crows diner have been found and identified the person who made the call the night Charlotte was killed. Aria fits the description. She tells Tanner that she’s never been there. If that’s true, then Tanner thinks she has nothing to worry about, but she still needs to come in and do a line up to eliminate her as a suspect. Uh oh.

Emily walks into one of the most stereotypical garages I’ve ever seen filled with burly, bearded men and load rock n’ roll. She asks about an SUV coming in recently to get some work done, but the worker who approached her says that she can’t help her. Emily can barely get another question out before she repeats that she can’t help her. Obviously she decides to take a look around and when she does, she finds the car that she was looking for and the same employee encourages Emily to leave, but when she asks if Melissa was the one who came in, she said it wasn’t her. Emily quickly exits.

Aria makes a move to leave the precinct after the tables were turned and she was in the line up, but walks around to the back to see if she can see who the “witness” was. She sees a bright blonde pixie cut and a black coat, but nothing more. She storms back in and asks Tanner if it was Creepy Sara that was the witness because if it was, Sara was on the wrong side of the glass. Tanner’s phone rings as Aria spots the case folder. She knocks over Tanner’s coffee in an attempt to read the description of the suspect. This episode has so many classic moves, huh?

Hanna’s bridal shower is in full swing and the girls can’t even focus on it. Ashley mentions that Hanna can’t neglect her other guests and suggests a game, but Hanna wants to hold off until Spencer gets there. Spencer is getting ready to leave for the party when her father stops her and demands that she distance herself from Caleb. He says that Caleb’s actions don’t fit their family’s values. Spencer finds this hysterical seeing as they shipped Melissa off to Europe after she killed someone. “She didn’t kill anyone! She was being blackmailed!” Wait, what? Back up, Papa Hastings. What are you talking about?

Just before Charlotte’s hearing, Melissa started getting threatening messages saying that they had her on tape saying she buried Bethany. The video would be released if Melissa didn’t drop off a sum of money. They don’t know who it was that was threatening her, but she dropped off the money and then Charlotte turned up dead. She got spooked and fled. But the girls don’t exactly believe that story. As Emily points out, even if it were true, wouldn’t that give Melissa more of a reason to see Charlotte dead? Spencer thinks that whoever it is that threatened Melissa is the one that’s threatening them now. So, with Melissa out of the picture, they’re back at square one.

A knock raps against the door and Hanna opens the door to see Mona. She congratulates Hanna, but says that she’s only stopping by to drop off a gift. It’s a wedding book that the two of them wrote before eighth grade. It’s a thoughtful gift that shows Mona still cares deeply for Hanna. Ashley invites her in for a drink and the party sits down to play 21 questions that doesn’t go so well as no one seems to know any of the answers about the bride and groom. Hanna grabs the tablet to change the music when it completely malfunctions. The sound goes haywire, the lights go out, the air conditioning is too strong, and as Aria stoops to pick something up, the fireplace blazes, taking her down.

Emily stares at the charred gift bags as Spencer learns of Aria’s admittance to the ER. She has second-degree burns but the doctors say she’s going to be fine. Emily doesn’t understand how this could have happened, but Spencer is really quick to assume that it was Mona who made it all happen. Her phone beeps with a message from Toby saying that he could meet now. This messages takes her back to the same flashback from earlier with the two of them in her dorm. It seems that the two of them had a bit of a pregnancy scare of their own. In the present, she lies to Emily about who it was and heads to the Brew to see Toby brooding and stirring his coffee just like before and she’s taken back again as they wait.

The two discuss what’s going to happen if the test is positive. It seems that she’s set on not seeing it through while he’s willing to do anything it would take, transfer to a precinct closer to her and move his whole life to DC, to make it work. She’s being harsh on him when he’s just trying to do the right thing. This conversation shows the clear line in their relationship of who expected what and how those expectations were never going to be met. It seems like Spencer really did a number on Toby’s heart.

She comes back to the present and sits down to tell Toby the truth. Not just about Caleb, but about the new Big Bad. He thanks her for being honest and asks if she’s okay. She said she would hate for him to think that she would judge Yvonne for making that choice, not after they almost had to make that choice. Both are lost in the memory when Toby says that he has to go. When he gets up, her phone beeps again. “You didn’t take me seriously, so I thought I’d light a fire under your ass.” Yikes.

Aria sits up in the hospital bed when she gets the same message. She hardly has time to take it in when Ezra comes in. Hanna texted him to tell him what happened and he rushed over to let others get some sleep. He’s come prepared with magazines, spare clothes, gummi bears, and more. She starts to cry. Ezra says it’s okay, it was a terrible accident. But it wasn’t an accident. Instead of being honest with someone who knows better than anyone what this situation is like, she says she shouldn’t have been standing that close to the fireplace. Ugh, Aria. Come on. This is Ezra! I’ll blame the pain meds for this one.


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