The Game Continues as Ali Takes Her Turn and One of the Liars is Tempted by Betrayal
A.D.raises the stakes on this week’s episode of Pretty Little Liars titled, “Power Play,” as the Liars feel even more pressure as they’ll face murder charges if the next task goes incomplete. After discovering Nicole (Rebecca Breeds) in Ezra’s (Ian Harding) apartment, Aria (Lucy Hale) decides to stay with Ali (Sasha Pieterse). They discover the Liar’s Lament has been moved and it selects Ali next to play the game. This time if the task isn’t done in time the Liars will be exposed for what happened to Archer Dunhill aka Elliott Rollins (Huw Collins) and more of him will be sent to the Rosewood PD like his finger. Aria goes along with Ali to various locations but mysterious phone call takes her away as Ali is forced to finish her turn alone.She discovers new details about her pregnancy that has her rethinking everything. While Aria learns Sydney (Chloe Bridges) is working with A.D. and appeals to Aria’s desperation tempting her to betray her friends.
Elsewhere, Em (Shay Mitchell) struggles to balance working with both Ali and Paige (Lindsey Shaw). She helps Paige with a big decision, but a new realization about Ali’s pregnancy might have her thinking twice. Meanwhile, Spencer (Troian Bellisario) is finally able to confront her dad about his past with Mary Drake (Andrea Parker) and demands to know where he’s really been. His business card for a private investigator he’s enlisted to find Mary Drake has Spencer and Hanna (Ashley Benson) following a lead. They find themselves on Ted’s (Edward Kerr) doorstep, but he claims he hasn’t seen her. Then later at Hanna’s admits Mary’s been staying with him and confesses to dating Mary in college. He reveals they had a child, Charles aka Charlotte (Vanessa Ray) and an old photo unveils a shocking secret about a close friend. Wowzers! This week dropped some bombshells. Here are this episode’s top O.M.G. moments.
The search for Mary Drake continues leading Spencer and Hanna to a familiar face with jaw-dropping secrets.
Spencer and Hanna follow a lead from a private investigator Mr. Hastings hired to find locate Mary Drake. An address leads them to Hanna’s mom’s ex-fiancé, Pastor Ted’s new house. Claiming he hasn’t seen Mary, Ted seems clueless so it must be a mix-up. But before they leave Hanna and Ted agree to keep touch and even suggests she’ll bring her mom along. After Hanna and Spencer leave, surprisingly Mary Drake appears behind Ted revealing she’s been there all along. Later, Ted goes to see Hanna at the apartment and confesses Mary’s been staying with him for the past couple days. He explains Mary and him dated college and later found out they had a son together, Charles. Yes, the same Charles who became Charlotte. Ted shows her photo from a camp for troubled boys, where he worked, with Charles and his only friend there, Lucas (Brendan Robinson).
“Fifteen years ago, I ran a camp for troubled boys and Charles was one of my campers. He was…soft-spoken, sweet. Way smarter than all the other kids. I had no idea…” – Ted.
“That he was your child.” – Hanna.
Talk about a double whammy! First, we learn Mary Drake dated Pastor Ted in college and also had a child. Hanna’s almost step-dad is Charles’ dad. Wow. And then we find out Charles and Lucas went to the same camp for troubled young boys and Lucas and Charles’ only real friend. Yes, the same Lucas that’s one of Hanna’s best friends and encouraged her to start her own fashion line. I’ve always had reservations about Lucas and his motives, but I definitely did not see any of this coming! Now, we have to wonder how real his friendship is with Hanna. Are his already odd reasoning for letting Hanna live in his apartment tainted? I find myself reconsidering the true motivation for all Lucas’ seemingly nice gestures.
Mr. Hastings and his secrets return to Rosewood and he finally reveals what happened to Jessica DiLaurentis.
After learning Spencer went looking for Mary Drake despite telling her not to, Mr, Hastings (Nolan North) is furious. Obviously, Spencer demands to know why Mary Drake is so dangerous, so he tells her. He reveals that on the night Jessica DiLaurentis was killed he found Mary lurking around in the shadows of the Hastings house. Mary claimed she just needed to see a glimpse of Spencer, her daughter. And Mary asks Mr, Hastings for his help. Turns out Jessica lied about Charles and told Mary he was dead and not that he transitioned to Charlotte. Mary found out the truth and wanted revenge. Mr, Hastings continues revealing that Mary used his pills to kill Jessica and then she buried her in the backyard. Spencer seems skeptical of her dad’s revelation, but damn that’s cold if it’s true.
“You knew about Charlotte before the dollhouse?” – Spencer.
“I’ll be damned if I ever let something like that happen to you again. Now, you can hate me Spencer. I can live with that. But please, please let me protect you.” – Mr. Hastings.
Of course, Mr, Hastings claims he is just trying to protect Spencer, but let’s be honest, he doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to his true intentions. Maybe Mary knows something about him that he’s trying to prevent from coming out. Mr. Hastings is the king of shady. He has not one, but two secret children with women who aren’t his wife. He didn’t come home when Spencer was shot. And let’s not forget, he even knew about Charlotte before Spencer, his own daughter, and the Liars were tortured in A’s dollhouse. The man is just awful.
Ali’s turn sends her on a wild goose chase and uncovers one of the sickest and most twisted revelation yet.
This week is Ali’s turn and the game sends her to a mystery location which turns out to be a baby store. Inside, A.D. set it up for Ali to make a baby registry, which is extra cruel. She had just decided she was going to terminate her pregnancy, so Elliot would no longer have control over her. But Ali pushes through and registers for gifts around the store alone since Aria bailed on her. She’s done, but discovers another surprise when she takes the registry to the counter the saleswoman has a package for Ali from ‘the egg donor.’ Inside the package, Ali finds a personalized necklace with beads spelling out Emily. Ali is in disbelief so she scrambles to find her puzzle piece and rushes out of the store. At home, Ali cancels her abortion appointment and breaks the news to Emily her stolen eggs had been fertilized and implanted inside her. And if that’s not enough to make you nauseated, Ali’s memory remembers the entire traumatizing procedure.
“Just because A.D. said it doesn’t mean its true.” – Em.
“I remember the whole procedure Em, They wheeled me out of my room at Welby. It wasn’t Archer. It was someone else. They strapped me down. I tried to stay awake. I tried to fight it, buy it was no use.” – Ali.
O.M.F.G.! Just when I thought PLL had reached sick and twisted lows with the numerous physical and mental methods of torturing the Liars. Or trapping them inside a creepy life-sized dollhouse and even stealing Em’s donated eggs, A.D. takes things to an all-time low and goes playing God. Ali carrying Emily and whoever’s baby is three shades of f*cked up. We assume Elliot is the father, but honestly, who even knows who the baby daddy is. It could seriously be anyone. Lucas, Noel Kahn or even slime-y Mr. Hastings.
The desperation to keep her past hidden causes Aria to abandon a friend and consider betraying the other PLLs.
An anonymous call from someone in a black hoodie taunts Aria about having her file from Jessica DiLaurentis and threatens to show it to Ezra. Aria is completely rattled. She takes a game piece, hurls it breaking a glass and begs the Liar’s Lament to let her out of the game. Aria composes herself and then accompanies Ali on her turn. But as soon as they find the location, she gets a text from A.D. to meet then along with a GPS location. She goes and then is invited into a limo. Inside, is someone in a black hoodie. It’s Sydney and she claims that she was who shot Spencer, helped Jenna (Tammin Sursok), and supposedly made up the whole ‘A’ game. Naturally, Aria is skeptical and asks why she’s telling her all this. Sydney tells Aria she could use desperate and invites her to consider changing sides. Sydney’s wearing an earpiece, so A.D. is definitely telling her what to say. Aria leaves, but still thinks about betraying her friends even though initially refusing. Because back at Ali’s she gets another text from A.D. asking about her decision that obviously gets her wheels spinning.
“There is no ‘out.’ But you could change sides and be part of the winning team.” – Sydney.
Aria better not join up with A.D.! Sadly, she’s not totally lost to A.D. She did ditch Ali and she could’ve totally used a friend during her turn. The previews for the next episode really make it look like she does. Sighs. What’s in her file that Ezra doesn’t already know? He knows she accidentally killed Shania and managed to get past that. It doesn’t get much worse than that. How could she even consider betraying her best friends? Maybe there’s something in the file that we don’t even know about. Something that happened during the four-year time gap. Maybe Mr. Hastings is her real dad. Just kidding. He does have a lot of secrets though.
FINAL VERDICT: Bombshell after bombshell drops as A.D. and the Liar’s Lament continues to torment the PLLs but this week’s “Power Play” reveals the unthinkable.
On this week’s episode, A.D. takes things to an all new low playing God with even bigger life changing consequences and potentially making a crack in what seemed to be the Liars’ impenetrable friendship. Lijah J. Barasz penned an episode that filled with shocking revelations at every turn keeping the intensity level of “Power Play” on beast mode. It was quite clever how Barasz reintroduced Pastor Ted into the storyline by revealing that he and Mary dated and had a son, but not just any son. Charles. The same Charles that became Charlotte and tortured the Liars for years. Holy coincidence Batman! And Barasz keeps the hits coming with a childhood photo of Charles and his friend that Ted shows Hanna. Director, Roger Kumble, has fantastic camera work capturing the emotion of both Hanna and Ted in the moment. And by zooming in on Ted’s photo, we see the details and of course, it’s not just any friend. It’s Lucas Gottesman. This changes everything about everything and all the nice things he’s done. Wow. Rosewood is quickly developing its own version of ‘six degrees of separation.’
Just when we recovery from one jaw-dropping reveal, Barasz sends heads spinning again revealing what happened to Emily’s stolen eggs. By focusing on the name on the necklace and then on Ali’s expression, Kumble fully captures the reaction to the horrifying truth that hits Ali. Barasz really does jam pack the episode with truth bombs, but it was no surprise for anyone to see Sydney working for Team A.D. But Aria entertaining the idea to betray her besties is truly disheartening. I really hope she stays true to her friends. Poor Paige. She and Em finally decided to give their relationship another go. Now, if Ali and Em decide to keep the baby Ali’s always going to be around and I can’t see Paige taking that too well. I cannot wait to see who the baby daddy is. Or how Lucas is going to play a part in everything. He Is an app game developer. O.M.G. what if he made the Liar’s Lament? Sadly, we’re going to have to wait an extra week for the next episode to find out.