The Pretty Little Liars Spring Premiere Marks the Beginning of the Final Ten episodes of PLL Ever as the Liars Piece Together Their Lives Yet Again.
In the Pretty Little Liars spring premiere, “Playtime,” the ladies try to piece their lives back together after the tragic events of the Season 7A finale. The episode picks up right where we left off with Spencer (Troian Bellisario) being taken to the hospital after being shot. A week passes and Spencer is home. Still reeling from Mary Drake’s (Andrea Parker) confession that she’s her mother. Just when the Liars thought their troubles with A.D. might be done following Noel’s (Brant Daugherty) abrupt death and Jenna (Tammin Sursok) M.I.A., Spence finds a package from A.D. It’s a creepy board game set in Rosewood complete with mini Liar pieces, a note reading “It’s Playtime” and reveals a final endgame. A.D. pushes things to a whole new level but they agree not to play and go about their business. Spencer is focused on finding the truth and learning more about their connection. So Spence asks her mom about Mary Drake and her claim. However, gives into temptation and plays the twisted ‘Truth or Dare’ game and is dared to visit Toby (Keegan Allen) at the hospital She’s rewarded with a letter from Mary Drake.
Meanwhile, Aria (Lucy Hale) is ready to walk out the door, bags packed and discovers Ezra’s (Ian Harding) returned. Wanting her to stay, he takes her bags upstairs. But now that Nicole (Rebecca Breeds) is back in the picture, Azria must figure out what that means for their future. Aria focuses on planning their wedding and reconnects with an old friend, Holden (Shane Coffey). Elsewhere, Hanna (Ashley Benson) and Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) couldn’t be happier since rekindling their relationship. He encourages her to pursue her fashion career and assures it won’t come between them again. As Hanna works on sketches outside The Brew, Mona (Janel Parrish) stops by. She loves her work and offers her help, so she introduces Hanna to a New York senator’s daughter, who agrees to wear one of her designs to an event. And at Rosewood High, Emily’s (Shay Mitchell) caught in the middle of Ali (Sasha Pieterse) and Paige (Lindsey Shaw), who have some serious tension. Poor Em struggles to balance things since they’re all working together now and on the same committee. A lot of drama happened in PLL this week, as usual. Here are the top moments that had us O.M.G.-ing.
A Special Delivery Courtesy of A.D. Teasing “It’s Playtime”
As the Liars are each off doing their own thing, Spencer discovers an enormous black box with the huge red bow had been delivered to her house. She sends out an S.O.S. text and the ladies all rush to Spencer’s to figure out what to do with A.D.’s latest gift. It’s card tauntingly reads “It’s Playtime” and inside is a huge board game called Liar’s Lament. The very elaborate yet super creepy board game is set in Rosewood and includes mini versions of each Liar to move around the board. In the center of the game is a cell phone, which is ironic since it’s been A’s preferred method of communicating or rather torturing the ladies for years. Surprisingly, the Liars all agree not to play, which is not like them. They’ve never been ones to back down from a challenge whether from A or A.D. But the Liars have gone from being replica dolls in A’s dollhouse turned real life to mini versions of themselves in a replica game of their lives. It’s definitely a game changer with a Jumanji-esque feel.
The moment we’d all been waiting for, Spencer asks Veronica Hastings, who she’s known as her mom, about Mary Drake’s claim that she is her mom.
Finally Spencer’s mom. Veronica Hastings (Lesley Fera) arrives home. She asks Spencer how she’s doing. Probably better if her parents came home after she’d been shot. What parents don’t rush home after hearing their daughter’s been shot? Anyways, Spence confronts her about Mary Drake’s claim. Veronica dodges the claim at first and is actually mad Spencer even mentions Mary Drake, but she doesn’t deny it, which Spencer cleverly points out. Finally, Veronica admits that yes, Mary Drake is Spencer’s mother and explains what happened. Turns out, when Peter Hastings (Nolan North) was cheating Mary Drake posed as Jessica DiLaurentis out of revenge. Peter mistook Mary Drake for Jessica and ended up getting her pregnant. So after Jessica discovered what happened she confessed to the Hastings. Veronica couldn’t bear to see the baby get lost in the system after being born in Radley, so the Hastings decided to adopt Spencer with the help of Noel’s dad. It’s a bittersweet moment between Spencer and her mom. We finally know who is Mary’s second child. She wasn’t kidding when she said the Hastings had secrets! Hey, at least Spencer’s dad is her real dad even though he’s a slimeball
“A crazy women was going to have a baby in…in Radley, in a mental hospital. And the baby would have been adopted. I couldn’t stand the thought of that baby…That baby disappearing. Being swallowed up and forgotten.” – Veronica.
It’s All Kinds Awkward for Emily Working with Both Her First Crush / Bestie and Her Ex-girlfriend.
With Ali, Emily and Paige now all working at Rosewood High, Ali and Paige are placed on the same committee despite Em’s reservations about it. At the committee meeting, Ali channels her old mean girl self and rips into Paige right in front of a school administrator. Poor Emily is caught in the middle. She confronts Ali about her behavior. She went to the doctor without Em despite their plan to go together, she’s been unnecessarily mean to Paige and has just been shutting Emily out. Ali admits that she feels like she doesn’t know who she is anymore and is left with fake memories. Emily asks Ali about their kiss and she can’t answer why she did it. This infuriates Em and she snaps at Ali telling her not to do it again. Em stops by to see Paige, who kindly reminds her that Ali loves playing the victim and Emily seem to love being the one to save her. Emily just can’t win with Ali or Paige.
“Ever noticed how she’s always the victim? Always the one who needs to be rescued? – Paige.
“I don’t know anyone who doesn’t need a little rescue.” – Em.
“Some people make a habit of getting rescued. Same way, other people make a habit out of jumping in after them.” – Paige.
Spencer takes the first turn in Liar’s Lament and the game doesn’t seem too bad, but the others are not pleased when they find out what she’s done.
Whether it’s the news that Mary Drake’s her mom, the alcohol, pure curiosity or just plain boredom, Spencer decides to take the first turn on the Liar’s Lament. After the game phone is in place, she’s prompted to choose Truth or Dare and opts for a dare. The screen shows Toby’s face and reads “Visit a sick friend. Get a reward,” so she does. When she returns the game gives Spencer an envelope that contains a letter from Mary Drake on Radley stationery explaining the Hastings and Jessica needed to be punished and hopes Spencer can forgive her someday. The envelope also has a shiny puzzle piece that she puts in the matching outline found underneath the cell phone. Later, Spencer calls the Liars over to confess what she did and investigate the game. Hanna wants to just smash the game and see what else might be inside, but the other stop her. A video of the ladies Liars burying Rollins (Huw Collins) begins to play on the game’s phone. Whether they like it or not they have to play the game because A.D. still has that on the Liars. Awesome…
“If the note really did come out of that thing, I say we get a crowbar.” – Hanna.
After nearly missing the entire episode, Jenna surfaces and leaves is with even more questions about her loyalties.
The episode’s final scene reveals Jenna is still alive and well. While the definition of well is debatable, but since this is PLL alive and uninjured constitutes as well. Debuting newly dyed red hair, the only thing we know about Jenna’s location is that she’s in a dark room somewhere. She drinks tea and asks someone off-screen presumably A.D. about a game which had been promised she’d learn about today. Then someone in a nurse uniform comes in drops a binder with pages of Braille in Jenna’s lap. Is the nurse A.D.? Or just someone working for A.D.? Jenna takes some time to read it. One of her big creepy smiles comes to her face and she whispers, “Endgame.”Has Jenna always been on the A.D. team? Or did she just get recruited? She’s surely more than just a hostage. You don’t share your endgame plan with just anyone especially a hostage.
“You said you’d tell me today about the game.” – Jenna.
FINAL VERDICT: Pretty Little Liars’ Spring Premiere, “Playtime,” sets things in motion for a non-stop, no holds barred, wild ride for into the series finale.
With only one episode into PLL’s final stretch to the series finale, the spring premiere doesn’t hold back on the drama for the Liars. Allyson N. Nelson and Joseph Dougherty penned an episode that has us captivated the entire time. They quickly wrap up the most of the cliffhangers from the 7B finale within the first few minutes of the episode. This cleverly allows the primary focus to be on the question of who’s Spencer’s biological mom and the Liars’ latest gift from A.D. The scene when Spencer and Veronica discuss if Mary Drake is Spence’s birth mom is perfectly done by Dougherty and Nelson. It has just the right amount hurt balanced with heartfelt emotion and a hint of shame from Veronica. Director, Chad Lowe, does a fantastic job capturing the emotion of the scene. He uses great camera work and alternates shots of Troian Bellisario and Lesley Fera, who are fantastic as well. The flashback of Spencer’s birth in black and white, which helps easily distinguish it from the present, but is also a bit silly. It gives the impression Spencer’s adoption happened in the Prohibition Era or something. Lol.
The scene when Spencer and Veronica discuss if Mary Drake is Spence’s birth mom is perfectly done by Dougherty and Nelson. It has just the right amount hurt balanced with heartfelt emotion and a hint of shame from Veronica. Director, Chad Lowe, does a fantastic job capturing the emotion of the scene. He uses great camera work and alternates shots of Troian Bellisario and Lesley Fera, who are fantastic as well. The flashback of Spencer’s birth in black and white, which helps easily distinguish it from the present, but is also a bit silly. It gives the impression Spencer’s adoption happened in the Prohibition Era or something. Lol.
The whole interactive board game idea is a unique concept from the writers but definitely has me feeling a Jumanji-esque vibe. There are so many questions surrounding the Liar’s Lament and its functionality. Specifically, how does the game cell phone stay charged? Do they need to plug it in because if it’s recording them and it most likely is, it’s going to need to be charged. Also are the ‘rewards’ and stuff already in the game or do they get randomly deposited by A.D.? Anyways, I’m really looking forward to how things transpire with the Liars forced to play the Liar’s Lament especially given its ‘Truth or Dare’ format. While the ladies have always had each other’s backs, there are still A LOT of secrets between the four of them. Their friendships are bound to be seriously tested and things are going to get real.