7:21pm PT by Philiana Ng
'Pretty Little Liars': 11 Questions Raised by the Season 4 Premiere
[Warning: If you have not watched the season four premiere, do not proceed. Major spoilers.]
If this was the season of answers, Pretty Little Liars certainly offered a fair share of them in the season opener.
The team in front of and behind the camera on the ABC Family's hit drama has made a point to assure loyal viewers that a slew of answers will be doled out during the course of the season. If Tuesday's season premiere is any indication, the answers will be coming in rapid speed -- but naturally, more questions will arise.
With a premiere titled " 'A' Is for A-l-i-v-e," it's no wonder theories on Alison's (Sasha Pieterse) true fate, the identity of "A" and the mystery of Red Coat dominated the conversation days and weeks before the season kicked off. Unfortunately, none of those mysteries were fully solved -- but writer/director Marlene King went full-force in addressing some of the series' important queries.
What is in Detective Wilden's trunk? It's definitely not what you think: a dead pig! The next day, the girls' discover Wilden's (Bryce Johnson) cop car that they abandoned to be surrounded by Rosewood police. Turns out, it wasn't just a pig in the car: They discover Wilden's dead body covered in tarp on the ground. How did it get there? They've figured out that "A" has made it look like they were the culprits behind Wilden's murder. When they go to his funeral to cover their tracks -- Spencer (Troian Bellisario) and Mona (Janel Parrish) discover that it's Hanna's mother's phone in Wilden's casket.
Who is the Queen of Hearts? In the Halloween special, the Queen of Hearts was the person who drugged Aria (Lucy Hale) and wreaked havoc on the train. It’s revealed pretty early on that Wilden was the Queen of Hearts (surprise!) but there’s another Queen of Hearts as well. And Mona drops a bombshell: “It’s your sister,” she tells Spencer. What? Just before the girls see Melissa (Torrey DeVitto) unmasking herself as the other guilty party, Mona’s computer gets hacked. “That’s convenient,” Spencer deadpans.
Is Mona to be trusted? The jury's still out on this one, but her actions in this episode are steps in the right direction. After all, Mona did take the chip out of Wilden's car that would incriminate Hanna's mother, bring the girls coffee and breakfast (every little thing counts) and reveal some truths about what's been going on. (To catch everyone up: Mona put Wilden's car in Hanna's garage; Shana knew Jenna before she came to town but both are afraid of Melissa; Mona thought Cece was Alison; Lucas gave Emily the massage, Mona gave Toby the job; and Mona didn't push Ian off the bell tower in season one and doesn't know who did it.) She also uses the chip as a key to ingratiate herself into the group. It seems Mona is on the Liars’ side for now, at least -- and she’s smart enough (duh) to know that her “friendship” with Hanna is all a ruse.
What if "Ezria" really was exposed? What a misdirect for the ages. In what could have been the biggest shocker of all played out halfway through the premiere, when Aria was presumably called into the vice principal’s office because an anonymous student had tipped him off on an inappropriate relationship between she and Mr. Fitz (Ian Harding). There were photographs, parents were called, Ezra was seen handcuffed … but it was all in Aria’s head. It could have been the nuttiest development to date. What if that had really happened? One can only imagine. That nightmare causes Aria to agree to Ezra’s suggestion that they see other people. Sorry "Ezria" fans.
Are Hanna and Mona back to being friends? This one’s tricky. Right now, it’s up in the air. But at least they had their shopping therapy trip.
Who was in the lodge with “Spoby”? Toby (Keegan Allen) as a sleuth is a welcome change. He goes back to the lodge, completely burnt, looking for clues regarding the mysterious lighter with insignia on it. Instead, he sees a burnt red coat. Later, he brings Spencer along hoping to find the jacket -- but to no avail. They enter the ruined lodge looking for more clues but they get more than they bargained for when Spencer realizes they’re not alone. Who was in there with them?
What is up with Toby's past? It's been teased that this season, Toby's backstory with his mother will come to light -- and the premiere introduced Marion in a heartbreaking way. In an emotional flashback, just as Toby and Alison take things to the next level, Marion comes in at the nick of time and isn't looking so hot. In present day, "A" sends a mysterious text message to Toby causing him to revisit his traumatic past. Does this have anything to do with the cryptic message Jenna wanted Emily to send to Toby? “Tell him I never meant to hurt him.”
Why is Alison’s mother back in Rosewood? This seems to be a bigger season-long mystery that will be answered as time goes on. It’s suspicious that Alison’s mother (Andrea Parker) is back in town around the same time Wilden’s funeral is taking place. Emily (Shay Mitchell) and company is apprehensive about her sudden re-emergence in town -- and they should be. Something’s not right here.
Will Emily go to Stanford? Paige (Lindsay Shaw) has a full-ride scholarship to Stanford University, but Emily isn’t sure she wants to trek across the country. After some persuasion, she finally concedes. But doesn’t Paige know that “A” will find you no matter where you are?
Who are the new cops? The Liars are only introduced to Officer Holbrook (welcome, Sean Faris!), who seems to be a slightly more by-the-books cop than Wilden is. He’s been reading up on the girls and their history, and seems to know every little thing about them. Will he be an ally?
Who is the mysterious person at Wilden’s funeral? The person's face is covered up in black lace, and it’s clear viewers are supposed to wonder the identity of the person. So who is it?
Some stray observations:
- Mona has an extra set of keys to Emily's car. Of course, she does.
- "Look how strong I made you. You should be thanking me." -- Mona says to Emily
- What is the green diet soda Hanna and Mona are seen drinking?!
- For those Jason fans, he's in the South renovating Grandma D's house.
Now that it's known "A" -- who might or might not have been wearing an Alison mask -- filmed the entire scene at Wilden's car, what will happen next? What are your thoughts on the Pretty Little Liars season premiere?