Welcome back to my weekly review and recap of Pretty Little Liars. To catch up on the previous episode, click here.
Creator and executive producer I. Marlene King promised this would be the #SummerOfAnswers for Pretty Little Liars fans.
“Game Over, Charles,” the highly-anticipated summer finale, delivered just that, but they weren’t necessarily the answers most fans were hoping for.
It should be needless to say, but this recap is filled with spoilers. Do not even think about reading this unless you already watched the finale.
Don’t jump, you A!
The episode opens with Aria (Lucy Hale), Emily (Shay Mitchell), Hanna (Ashley Benson), Spencer (Troian Bellisario), and Alison (Sasha Pieterse) walking upstairs to Radley’s rooftop. When they reach their destination, they see A clad in trademark black hoodie about to jump as police officers storm outside of the building.
However, even after all of the torture this villain put them through, the liars don’t want A to die. The girls say now that they know A’s story, they understand.
Regardless of everything A hears, the anonymous character makes moves to jump as the girls scream, “No!”
And in true suspenseful PLL fashion, the episode flashes back.
Earlier that night
At prom, the liars call Kenneth’s (Jim Abele) home phone with the hope of getting in touch with Alison and Charles’s father, but have no luck. We can overhear the girls’ mothers screaming for help from the DiLaurentis basement. They should get out by the end of the episode, right?
Sara (Dre Davis) joins the girls and tells them that Tanner has questions for all of them while they theorize about Alison’s whereabouts. Soon, they realize they are not alone, as Aria hears footsteps. When they investigate, the girls find the red-cloaked figure wearing a mask, and it turns out to be none other than Mona Vanderwaal (Janel Parrish). Mona has been following Ali since she got back in town and learns that Charles has his own cellular network with servers located at the Carissimi Group. The girls venture off to find Ali.
A drags Jason’s (Drew Van Acker) body across the floor while Ali wakes up in a bed at Radley and sees family photos on the wall. She gets distracted when she sees her father lying on the other side of steel bars. Meanwhile, the girls park outside of the Carissimi Group and notice cops stashing bags in the back of a van. They wonder why they are moving this stuff in the middle of the night. When they get inside, they try to crack a code to break into a room. Sara informs them that Charles used to give her a red, white, and blue cupcake on Sept. 7. So they successfully enter the room with the code, 0907.
At first the room looks plain, but it ends up opening to a much larger well-lit room with a touchscreen center panel. Sara opts to stay outside because it’s “a little tight in there.” Eventually, the wall closes in and the touchscreen reveals a giant hologram (because A knows about technology!). The girls get a firsthand look inside Ali’s room and they see her looking at Kenneth and Jason’s bodies.
However, the big twist comes when they see A in the room with Ali, and when the elusive hooded figure turns around, it is revealed to be…CeCe Drake (Vanessa Ray)?
Yes. The anonymous crazy person we have been theorizing about for over five years happens to be a minor character who has only appeared (though often mentioned) in 12 out of the last 82 episodes since the series revealed Mona as the original A. We haven’t seen CeCe since episode 5.13, “How the ‘A’ Stole Christmas.” This is why fans are saying “What?” not in shock but to question the writers’ creativity. However, CeCe’s backstory ends up being quite interesting and answers several lingering questions.
NEXT: Who killed Toby’s mother?