The Liars are done with Ali. At the end of the last episode, the Liars had all but decided to go to Lieutenant Tanner and tell her that Ali had lied about being kidnapped. And it sounds like nothing’s changed when things pick back up. “They are very definitely in the same frame of mind,” Dougherty said. “This episode is literally moments later from the end of the previous episode, so they’re still determined to do it.”
Melissa’s secret is coming out, and it will change everything. Since season four’s finale, fans have wondered what it was that Melissa told her father at the police station seemingly regarding Bethany Young and the night Ali died. And come Tuesday, viewers will finally find out. “This is going to permanently and definitively answer a question about what happened the night Ali disappeared, the first night that started everything,” Dougherty said. And along with that secret, we’ll also be getting some more flashbacks to the night Ali disappeared. (Yes, Spencer still has that shovel.) But if you’re like me and you thought Melissa’s secret was going to be the thing that ended the summer season, Dougherty promised that they’ve got an even bigger surprise coming in the summer finale. When I expressed my concern, he simply said, “Well maybe we’re just going to top that.”
Your Ravenswood questions will finally get some answers. After the Pretty Little Liars spinoff, Ravenswood, was canceled after one season, series lead Tyler Blackburn (Caleb) returned to his former home in Rosewood. But when Caleb came back, he brought a lot of baggage with him. “Ever since the fates conspired against us, we’ve been looking for a way to satisfactorily tell people what did happen,” Dougherty said. “And I think the key to Caleb moving on in Rosewood is that he has to share some more, particularly with Hanna, about what happened after that last episode of Ravenswood.” As for Ravenswood characters appearing on the show, Dougherty teased that they might show up in the future but not in the next episode.
Does Emily want another shot with Paige? A photo from this week’s episode shows Paige wearing a very fancy dress, which fans know is not her typical look. “As you know, the return of Alison has profoundly complicated things between Emily and Paige,” Dougherty said. “And I think Paige has pretty much been open about her concern that Emily’s just not done and there’s been a little back and forth. Emily’s very definitive at the end of last week’s episode, [but] Paige doesn’t know about that definitive choice, and I think the issue is, Emily wonders if she can, in good conscience, say, ‘Let’s try this one more time.’”
There’s no Halloween episode this year. This year, the show is switching things up and won’t be doing its annual Halloween episode. As Dougherty put it, “You just can’t do the Olympics every year.” However, there will be “a fan appreciation hour” during ABC Family’s 13 nights of Halloween, and then a little bit later, the first-ever PLL Christmas episode.
What does #FatalFinale mean exactly? When I asked Dougherty if I was going to wind up on the floor after the summer finale, much like I did last year, he responded, “Well if we’ve done our job right, you will. I don’t think we’re kidding around.”
Bonus tease: That glimpse you saw of Alison hooked up to a lie detector test in the promo is not in this next episode, but fans will know more of her narrative soon.
Red Carpet (5pm EST)
Show (8pm EST)
We will also be live tweeting the show at @beautifulballad
Lucy Hale (Aria)
"The twist with Ezra as ‘A.’ I never thought that he would be the bad guy. It makes sense now because he was a little too perfect, too good of a boyfriend. But I didn’t know that show would go there because I didn’t know that they would want to make [fans] mad because everyone was so upset about it. But when the show went there, it made the character more interesting."
Troian Bellisario (Spencer)
"Toby being ‘A’ was a huge shift. That was a big twist. And even though I knew that they would probably reveal that he was working for the good guys, it was still pretty shocking."
Shay Mitchell (Emily)
"For me it was the Nate and Emily kiss [in season one], and also Toby turning around and being ‘A.’ "
Sasha Pieterse (Alison)
"They keep getting more and more massive. My first shock was when it was revealed Toby was ‘A.’ It wasn’t surprising that they would do something like that, but that he [Keegan Allen] knew from episode one. I was in his first scene in his first episode and he already knew — he didn’t say a word to anyone until it was revealed. It was like, ‘Seriously? I thought we were close! I thought we were friends!’ And I loved the way they explained Alison’s disappearance. I was buried six-feet deep! I doubt I’ll be buried ever again."
Ian Harding (Ezra)
"When I was suddenly was the villain, which was wonderful and I loved it. But then we come to find out that I wasn’t necessarily the villain, but just a creeper. That was probably my favorite twist, but there are two things that happen this season that I can’t talk about, but they were awesome. It’s pretty heavy hitting up until the fifth episode."
Tyler Blackburn (Caleb)
"Every episode! But the death of Alison’s mom. That was pretty wild to me. I had heard about it before it was being filmed and that was intense. That’s major. When someone’s parent goes down, you know it’s serious."
Keegan Allen (Toby)
"Being part of the ‘A’ team or playing the evil villain for a second. That was really exciting and a great layer to put on to the character and what he’s capable of."
Janel Parrish (Mona)
"I really liked Madhouse Mona. It was interesting because I never quite knew — while filming the seasons — if she was actually crazy or actually being manipulative. I’m still not quite sure but it was fun to play a little mixture and keep people guessing. Is she? Is she not?"
Chad Lowe (Byron)
"It was the Halloween episode where there was a flashback on Ali’s last night and the reveal that Byron was the last person who was with Ali. I remember at the table reading, there was a gasp and everybody looked at me and I said, ‘I didn’t do anything! Let me read this!’ That was fun for me to play. I thought it was a great moment for the show because the parents were really integral to the plot. The show doesn’t have your traditional A and B story lines so when the parents are integrated into the A plot, if you will, that’s when they’re used to the maximum. That was satisfying for me. It was one short scene, but it had a huge impact."
Vanessa Ray (CeCe)
"The whole thing that happened with Aria’s boyfriend Ezra [when he turned dark]. When that was revealed at the table read, that was impressive — it was a big one. And then I didn’t know if CeCe was going to die or not. At one point I thought, ‘Surely, CeCe dies,’ and the producers were like, ‘Nope!’ "
Tammin Sursok (Jenna)
"For me, my character getting her vision back [in season two] was really, really cool because as an actress, I had a lot to play with. And then she lost it over the season, which was interesting too to see her vulnerability and how she played into it."
Laura Leighton (Ashley)
"The craziest twist was when my character, Ashley, ran over Detective Wilden with her car."
I am in love with the picture! Can’t wait for the PLL 100th episode!
Okay, Marlene—spill! What is Mona up to this season with that army of disgruntled misfits?
Marlene King: We literally have coined that group as “The Mona Army,” and she is now out in the open, not as A, but out in the open assembling a group of people who Alison tormented while she was living in Rosewood. I think that she is hoping to stand united with these people when Alison returns. She’s convincing them that there’s safety in numbers.
Does this mean that she has put her “A” antics behind her?
MK: She says early on at some point in this summer season, “I’m here! I’m out in the open, I don’t need to be A anymore.” So she’s facing her opponent, head-on and very much out in the open.
Was Shana really “A,” or was she merely another minion in the A Team’s huge web?
MK: A lot of those questions are going to be answered this summer. She definitely admitted to starting that fire at the lodge, that was her truth and she admitted to getting justice for Jenna for what Alison and all of those girls did to her and how profoundly it affected the rest of Jenna’a life.
Is it safe to say that she was the same “A” that was on the roof?
MK: That will play out in the next couple of episodes. I don’t want to answer or not answer but I will say that what Ezra whispered to Aria was that it was Shana on the roof. So what he said on the roof in the season four finale—”I know who you are!”—he knew that as Shauna.
Okay we’ve just got to get this off of our chest. Ali and Cece share such a strong—almost sisterly—bond. Could there be another branch on the DiLaurentis family tree?
MK: I love those scenes too and I feel like their connection is very much like that. They have a deeper connection than we have understood on the show and [the season five premiere] was the episode that would allow you to feel that. That was the ultimate sacrifice. Ali gave her the get out of jail free card. We cast her to look alike because we knew it would be a lot of fun to play with that theory and I will just say that there are a few other twists coming down the line with another character that we’re exploring at the same time.
Assuming that Ezra makes a full recover, (fingers crossed!) what is his relationship with the liars going to be like now that they’re all on the same side?
MK: It plays out very organically. He does return to Rosewood, and Ezra knows something that nobody else knows when the girls come back and that’s that they were in New York, they weren’t in Philadelphia. They’re going to have to find their story and they need Ezra to collaborate with that story, so he becomes very organically involved in their lives again.
And how about Aria and Ezra’s relationship?
MK: We know that Ezra and Aria are soul mates, whether they are romantically entwined or not, those two are, somehow, always thrown into situations together.
How did we go from 8 guys on Pretty Little Liars in the 2nd season to only really two in the 4th season!?
Can we please bring them back…I will at least settle for Wren :)
Promo for the Halloween episode
THIS PROMO MAY HAVE A VERY BIG SPOILER! You have been warned