Why can’t I insert emojis in WordPress?! If I could, I would be inserting all of the shocked face emojis here. True, I listed her as someone I thought I might die last week, but still, I kind of can’t believe it actually happened! What a crazy, action packed, finale that was, huh guys? Let’s get right into it — our last Power Rankings of the summer!
HUGE FREAKING SPOILER ALERT – I am so, so, SO sad that Mona is dead. To use the ABC Family hastag, #RIPMona. You may be wondering, “Hey, Christine, she died, so why the heck are you making her top of the list?” Um, because she rocked, that’s why! Mona did a series of amazing things this week, chief among which was finally teaming up with her fellow genius, Spencer Hastings, the way she always wanted. One of my favorite parts of the episode was when Spencer said, “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth gets a chance to put its pants on.” In response to Hanna’s, “Did Ali say that?” Mona and Spencer simultaneously say, “No, Churchill did” and then look at one another like, “Whoa, I’m not used to these other dopes understanding my references.” They later team up to break into Radley, a place they both spent time as patients, in order to steal Bethany Young’s files to find a connection between Bethany and Ali. Mona and Spencer using their powers for good (or just to take down Alison) is what I’ve always wanted. It was all I hoped it would be and more. Even to the last, Mona is still kicking ass. For her last act, she discovers a connection between Bethany and Ali, thereby proving Alison is A (or so Mona thinks). (Why she calls Aria to share that information and not, say, anyone else, is a bit confusing, but whatever.) Bottom line: Mona was a misunderstood (fine, emotionally troubled) genius who only ever wanted to fit in and be part of a group and tonight, she got that (and she got to use her genius powers at the same time). It was a fitting end for one of PLL‘s best characters. Farewell, Mona. You will be missed.
Well you guys, I think this settles it — in the biggest upset since the Miracle on Ice, somehow Emily Fields won the season. I’m as shocked as you, believe me. But major kudos to Emily for finally getting on board with reality and growing a spine (and continuing to look amazing in the process). I loved Emily’s borderline insanity about Christmas. (“Read her boobs. The girls loves Christmas.” –Hanna Marin.) She names all of her decorations (Snowy, Wiggy, and Piggy?), she has a lifesize nativity scene, which is, admittedly, a little creepy (“Where’s Jesus?), and she even says to Hanna, “If you can’t find Christmas in your heart, Hanna, you’re not going to find it under a tree.” This scene provided a moment of levity in an otherwise super heavy episode. The best thing about Emily now, though, is her willingness to stand up to Alison. I would never have believed Emily capable of something like asking Ali to her face whether or not she’s A. (I’m choosing to ignore the fact that what precipitated this confrontation was Emily stupidly leaving her phone on the table so that Alison could read her texts.) I’m so proud of how far she’s come. Oh and plus ten for getting back together with Paige. I’m into it.
Speaking of Paige, great job by her this week. First, she tells Em that she’s sick of talking and just up and kisses her in the hallway at school. You go, Paige. Then she doesn’t even get pissed when she sees Ali exiting Emily’s house (after Em clearly lied to her about being sick). Instead, Paige follows Alison (and the creepy twins, Cindy and Mindy) to an abandoned farm where a dozen cars are parked and Ali is, to use Paige’s words, “building an army.” In other words, Paige was decisive, useful, and she didn’t get mad for a dumb reason. All of which gets you high atop the Christine Power Rankings. Well done, Paige.
Ok, so the show wants us to think too badly that Ali is A and that she killed Mona, right? There must be something else to this. (And the something else must be that Alison has a twin. It just has to be.) Regardless, this sociopath somehow gamed a polygraph test, convinced the police that Spencer was responsible for Bethany Young’s death, and she got herself cleared as a suspect in the process. In other words, she’s insane, but she’s good.
Well, here’s an improvement: no talk of Ravenswood this week! Beyond that, Caleb is useful in that he gets to use his weird hacker skills to find out that the police are targeting Spencer and to, essentially, control the Radley security system so Mona and Spence can roam the halls at will. Though I maintain my dislike of Caleb, points for being helpful.
Samesies — I may not like her, but she was relatively useful this week. Specifically, Aria distracts a nurse at Radley while doing her art volunteering so Mona and Spencer can steal the nurse’s keys. She is also pretty decent in her scene with Holbrook, explaining that she’s volunteering and, after his questioning get a bit aggressive, asking whether she should call her parents. I think this is the first time one of the teenagers in this town has realized that, hey, the cops really can’t just question me whenever they feel like it without a parent or lawyer present. Shocking that it’s Aria who realizes this, but points nonetheless. Aria also gets a great line in the beginning of the episode too. The Liars ask Mona to help them with Alison and Mona asks, “Why do you think I can help you?” As the other girls look sort of constipated, Aria says, “Because you’re Mona.” Indeed, Aria, indeed. (She also appears to be wearing a vinyl skirt in this scene, but we’ll try not to focus on that.) And guess what? I”m not going to complain about the
completely nonsense Ezria scene we were forced to sit through tonight. Why? Because of a dear, dear Friend of Christine, Bridget. Bridget got married this past weekend (and it was amazing). She loves PLL, is an avid reader of the blog, and is an Ezria supporter. So for you, Bridge, I shall not hate on Aria and Ezra this week. (Bridget also got me a gift for doing a reading in her wedding — namely, a framed picture that says “What Would Spencer Hastings Do? This is the greatest gift ever. Cheers, Bridge!)
See above re: not being critical this week. And apparently, if you don’t have anything nice to say, you shouldn’t say anything at all. Moving on.
This week we learn that Hanna Marin has Buffy Summers syndrome — she appears throughout the series to be, for all intents and purposes, not particularly book smart, and yet, during her senior year, we find out that she inexplicably nailed the SATs! (Or SCTs as Hanna called them.) I sort of hate this concept, since it just serves to undermine everything we’ve known about the character in the past. Like, remember when Hanna was obsessed with solving mysteries via James Patterson crime novels? Really, that girl did amazingly on the SATs? Feels doubtful. In other news, Hanna is probably in a bad way now since she was actually Mona’s friend and, you know, #RIPMona. Sad day.
(9) Mona’s Mom
First of all, who knew she existed? And she bakes chocolate chip cookies, how nice! Here’s a question though: why did Mona’s mom go see the principal and then lie to Mona about it? True, it could have been for some innocuous reason. After all, Hanna just told Mona’s Mom that she thought Mona was afraid of Alison. And immediately after Mrs. Vanderwaal leaves the office, the principal calls Alison down. But still … that was a little weird, right? Either way, sad for Mrs. V in her first (and probably last) PLL appearance. I’m guessing we won’t see her again.
Welp, you have no friends left now, huh? And whoever killed Mona is going to eventually realize that Lucas was her #1 minion and be after him as well. I might go back to wherever not-Rosewood place you were creepily lurking before, buddy.
As discussed above, seeing Spencer and Mona using their genius together was a real treat for me. Spence also looked really great this week. (That opening blue shirt/long necklace/black skirt combo was on point.) That weird foreplay/roleplay scene with Spence and #OfficerToby was … interesting (especially for ABC Family) … but the pocket watch she gave him was really adorable. (Inscribed message: “You’re my once upon a time. –S” Say it with me now: AWWWW.) Nevertheless, Spencer ends this episode in the slammer accused of murdering Bethany Young. Of course, she has Melissa’s confession on tape, which directly proves that she didn’t do it. Plus, Spencer’s mom is super-lawyer, Fake Mariska Hargitay, who has already gotten Ashley M (and certainly countless others) out of jail in the past. So she’s probably going to be just fine in the end. But still. Not a great season-ending situation for our favorite heroine.
But yeah, not great for #OfficerToby either, huh? He misses his graduation from the police academy, ends up in a full length leg cast, and his girlfriend has been arrested and charged with murder. Such a series of bummers. And because Toby is less cool than Spencer, he gets ranked lower than she does. Sorry, Officer, that’s just the way it goes.
Not Ranked: The world’s creepiest twins, Cindy and Mindy (did Mona call them the Toodles? You guys are in high school, how about you start dressing differently?); Aria’s family (Aunt Sara is apparently going to check under Ezra’s hood, which, ew, Uncle Danny will challenge him to arm wrestle, which Uncle Danny will certainly win, and Granny
doesn’t does pluck her chin hairs, but “toots” a lot … ew); Detective Tanner (dude, everyone is going behind your back while you are inexplicably gone!).
Speaking of Detective Tanner, let’s talk about this for a minute. Why is Holbrook back all of a sudden? And why is he doing a bunch of stuff without waiting for Tanner (even though at least one person suggests that he should wait for her)? Seems suspicious, right? Could he be working with Alison? (Yes. Everyone could be working with Alison.) Another thing — let’s talk about the qualities of the group that Mona assigns them. She says that the Liars are the perfect group for a sociopath to manipulate because they all present a different challenge. Spencer = smart, Emily = loyal, Hanna = admiring, Aria = compassionate. Spencer and Emily, I get. Hanna is admiring because … she ultimately bit off Ali’s style after she was gone? I guess that makes sense? But Aria is compassionate? Um … that feels like more of a stretch. (Again, I’ll refrain from ranting here out of deference to the newlywed, FoC, Bridget.) But still, this is an interesting concept and something I hadn’t thought about before. Mona essentially suggests that Ali collected this specific group together because they were so different and their differences (specifically, learning how to manipulate them) were what made the interesting. I don’t know much about how sociopaths work, but this seems plausible to me.
Anyway, guys, what a wild ride this season has been. Unlike last season, when we were teased with a death that was clearly a fake out, this time, Marlene finally did it and killed off someone that we actually like. It’s been a fun few months, and I can’t wait until we’re back at it. (With a Christmas episode nonetheless! Emily must be so pumped.) For now, I’ll just say #RIPMona. You were one of the greats and you will be missed.
See you next time.