On last night’s Pretty Little Liars, Aria sought help protecting her brother, Spencer continued Toby’s quest for the truth about his mother, Emily planned for her future, and Hanna enlisted Mona to be her lying coach. Isn’t Pretty Little Liars so much more fun when Mona’s around? Especially since she’s joined Team Liars. Despite being a devious liar and A+ criminal, Mona often seems like the sanest member of the group–very level-headed and intelligent, though she did learn from the best. And it doesn’t hurt that Ezra and Jake also made appearances in “The Guilty Girl’s Handbook,” making the episode a solid installment of season 4.
Let’s talk about it!
Having been run out of their house by a wayward car, Emily and her mother moved into a hotel. The police (unsurprisingly) had no leads on the driver, but they did find out the car was stolen (progress!). Emily tried to bail on a college-planning meeting with Ezra to help her mother, but Mrs. Fields refused her. When Emily met with Ezra, he quickly puzzled out that someone else was harassing the girls and pushed her to seek help, but Emily dodged his questioning. Later, at Ezra’s encouragement, Emily reconnected with her Habit for Humanity supervisor Zoe to ask for a letter of recommendation. Zoe did one better and offered Emily a leadership position on their next Habit for Humanity trip to Nicaragua, which Emily promptly accepted.
When Aria learned Mike was taking self-defense lessons, she took off for Jake’s workplace and questioned him about Mike’s motivations. Jake mentioned Mike was being targeted by his own teammates and offered support to Aria, despite her previously telling him she wasn’t available. So far, Jake seems like a genuinely decent human being–as much as I like Ezra, I’d love seeing Aria with someone her own age, especially someone as sweet as Jake. Later that night, Aria attempted to call her brother while he was at a party and a teammate answered the phone. He told Aria her brother was currently unconscious and hung up. Panicking, Aria called Jake; he stopped by and seemed willing to do whatever she needed to help Mike, but then Mike called and told Aria he was fine. Crisis averted, Aria asked Jake if he’d like to stay and the two wound up setting a movie date (By the way, nice ridiculous product placement Pretty Little Liars, but I’ll forgive you since it led to an Aria-Jake date.)
Mama Hastings greeted Hanna early in the morning with some not-so-cheery news–the judge refused Ashley’s bail and was sending her to the state prison in Muncie. Desperate, Hanna enlisted Mona to help coach her false confession for Wilden’s murder. Why Mona? Because she’s the best at living a lie, of course. The pair spent the episode walking through various questioning topics (like Hanna’s motivations, the story about the missing heels, why Ashley’s fingerprints were on the gun, etc.), but Caleb, after visiting Ashley (who was worried her daughter was planning something stupid), put a stop to Hanna’s idiotic plan as soon as he figured it out.
After dozens of boxes containing information about Wilden’s life (and cute intern Beckett!) were dropped off at the Hastings’ household, Spencer did what Spencer does best and stole a file about Toby’s mother’s alleged suicide. Next, she dolled herself up for a Radley visit and met up with nurse Eddie. Instead of cookies, she opened a tin she was carrying to reveal the stolen file. Unfortunately, Eddie offered little information aside from indicating Wilden was a crooked cop, and that was why he’d doctored Eddie’s statement on the official form. Maybe you should’ve taken him some real cookies, Spence? I don’t know; I’m not a teenage detective. Anyway, Spencer returned home, and Beckett gave her an opportunity to return the stolen file without her mother seeing, but Spencer turned him down and confronted her mother later instead. Maybe she was just overwhelmed with Ashley Marin’s case, because Mama Hastings was NOT giving Spencer’s proof the time of day. (You’d think after three and a half seasons of their daughters being bullied/harassed/brutalized, the liars’ parents would do a better job listening to their children. It might save them all an awful lot of trouble.) Spencer and Mrs. Hasting’s conversation was interrupted by a call from the police station, where Mona was CONFESSING TO WILDEN’S MURDER.
The liars converged at the police station, where Mona gave them her trademark smirk through the questioning room window before the cops shut the blinds. Such a great development, though it’d be a shame for Mona to get sent away to juvie.
Lastly, A was seen drilling holes in someone’s floor? I couldn’t quite make out what A was doing, aside from being his/her typically conniving and oddball self.
Bonus: Here’s the song that played at the end of the episode, called “Bad Things” by Meiko.