Pretty Little Liars: Out, Damned Spot
February 11, 2015 7:10 AM - Season 5, Episode 19 - Subscribe

With a grade contingent acceptance, Aria needs to buckle down to improve her grades and looks to Andrew for some tutoring help. Also having college acceptance anxiety, Spencer decides to take a break and help Jonny with a new project. Hanna is doing just fine on her college acceptances but finds out that she has been turned down for financial aid and turns to her dad to help. Meanwhile, Aria and the girls concerns about Mike increase after an incident at the school blood drive.

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posted by Bulgaroktonos (13 comments total)
God I have SO MANY THOUGHTS on this episode and I thought parts of it were a strong return to form. Emily's got a married girlfriend? In basically an open relationship? I thought that was fascinating! Are they still going to date?

Also JESUS FUCKING CHRIST I HATE JOHNNY (I think that's his name) SO MUCH. GOD SPENCER DON'T FALL FOR HIS NONSENSE! DON'T YOU SEE HE IS THE WORST? I totally get how high school Spencer finds him charming but seriously she can do SO MUCH BETTER. He is absolutely fucking terrible.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:37 AM on February 11, 2015

It's also interesting that right now it really does seem like Mike is working for Alison. Maybe his fight with Mona was Mona telling him to trust Alison and now he is? I thought that was interesting and peculiar because if he's giving stuff to Cyrus Petrillo after getting a call with the guy's fake name from prison (in what sounded like Ali's voice) he MUST be helping Ali, right? There's nothing else that could be.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:41 AM on February 11, 2015

Oh God also Hannah's thing with her dad just broke my heart. Poor Hannah. Her stepsister (really her father's stepdaughter; they've met like twice and Kate was AWFUL to her) is going to Dartmouth and her father is paying and he doesn't even care that she's interested in college? That felt really, really honest and painful to me. Poor Hannah. She deserves better. That said, I am SO AMAZINGLY EXCITED for this pageant! It is going to be INSANE I hope!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:44 AM on February 11, 2015

The cardinal rule of PLL spelling is that it always has fewer letters than you expect. The characters are Hanna, Jonny, and Lesli.

The pageant promises to be phenomenal. Is it a marketing tie in with the live-action Cinderella movie? Probably. Will is be A MILLION times better? Definitely. I'm really rooting for Hanna because she feels like she needs a win. Naturally, I'm assuming she'll leave the pageant in handcuffs.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:10 AM on February 11, 2015

Oh God I hope not! She really does need a win, doesn't she? At least she doesn't have romantic problems, although her mom's romantic problems are affecting her. Everyone else's romantic life is a damn mess.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:18 AM on February 11, 2015

They really are a mess right now aren't they? Spencer is quasi-cheating on Toby with Jonny, although they are only sort of dating at this point. Emily is dating a married woman, maybe. Aria and Fitz are...whatever they are.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:21 AM on February 11, 2015

Their parent lives aren't much better -- at this point the parents on the show recently have been Hanna's asshole dad, Hanna's mom who I like a lot but is making life harder and not easier by cheating on Pastor Ted who Hanna really liked, and Spencer's mom who's helping Alison's defense team. Everything is ridiculous.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:28 AM on February 11, 2015

God also we haven't even talked about the blood at all -- what was that shirt at the end with the eyedropper? I'm assuming it was something Mona was wearing when she died, maybe? Also, we still don't know where her body is, do we? And Tanner found Ali's blood in that storage unit -- where is that going? And Holbrook wasn't really mentioned in this episode at all.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:34 AM on February 11, 2015

I think it was interesting, too, that this was one of the first times that multiple liars (Hanna and Spencer) pointed out that going to college was the best way for them to leave Rosewood. Like, they're not necessarily adults yet but they're getting there, at least legally, and that means they have geographical options and it's sort of strange to see the world opening up for these characters specifically in the same way it does for so many people as they start to think about college or life after high school. Their existence until now has been contained in one town and living with their families (I mean, kind of, if their families were ever around in any meaningful way) and it's like just last night they woke up and were like "oh, right, soon I can leave, but I have to make that happen, it won't just occur by magic".
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:39 AM on February 11, 2015

This episode felt a bit like a holding pattern. Continue to hit Mike being creepy, work in the blood thing for a later payoff. Fill out with some relationship plots. The blood thing is probably going on Ali's clothes, but the question for me is: do they just straight up frame one of the Liars or do are they just trying to fuck with Ali's trial. Also, which Liar? I feel like Aria has been getting off pretty easy, so I'd like to see it be her.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:54 AM on February 11, 2015

Incidentally, we have not even mentioned how Aria just straight up cheated on a test. I assume that's going to come back to haunt her through A but, even if it doesn't, WTF Aria? I get that studying was super hard for you for some totally understandable reasons but just flat-out copying off of someone else's test? Seriously? It seems kind of out of character but I think most of the liars have become increasingly amoral as the series has progressed.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:17 AM on February 12, 2015

I'm actually not super surprised or bothered by the cheating; it's a thing high school students do.

Doing it when you live your life in constant fear of a omnipresent and omniscient malevolent force who gets its jollies from exposing your secrets is a bad idea, though.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:34 AM on February 12, 2015

Yeah, that's kind of fair, I suppose it's partially that it was a sort of casual thing. It's mostly odd if it never comes up again, I guess? I mean I don't need a whole huge Cheating Is Bad after-school special but, on the other hand, for a character who I think has a fair amount of self-righteousness you'd think there'd be some soul searching?

Maybe not, though -- I suppose part of the thing about Aria is that she TRULY BELIEVES that she's a good person who would never do anything like cheat or answer someone else's phone or whatever and believes it SO STRONGLY that she keeps believing it even after she's done that thing. I mean, she knows she cheated, but she also still believes it doesn't count because she's not the kind of person who would cheat. Who knows, maybe it was just an excuse to get strip-academic-decathlon guy back on our radar.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:42 AM on February 12, 2015

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