Okay, that was pretty awesome. For the season finale of a show almost entirely about creating twists and turns inside of twists and turns it's fairly satisfying, while also being almost entirely about setting up next season... But as a recapper I've come to appreciate when shows don't infodump the entire thing on you in the finale, like, "Now to revisit the entire show." Which I guess this show would have to take its Ritalin for that to even be a possibility, because you sort of had to know at least one of the mysteries was going to involve Cop Garrett, because he was the last dude to show up. You know what I mean?
Ezra Fitz, adorably giddy, has finally quit his job at Rosewood High to accept a position at Hollis College with Byron Montgomery, so you can kind of see some of the storylines from here, but then also guess who else works there? That lady from his "website page," the former fiancée, is a fellow teacher Ezra forgot to mention. So now Aria gets to throw fifty kinds of shits about it and how Ezra's never lied to her before, blah blah. But then you got Noel Kahn lurking in the last five seconds of the episode, looking wonderful, so I'm thinking that's going to be the triangle. So excellent!
Part of the USB drive was a bunch of videos of Jenna molesting Toby and actually telling him she'll cry rape if he doesn't let her fuck him, all of which is gross but on the other hand, they're not actually related so she kind of has a point, and possibly he should have chosen a different reason to claim for not wanting to sleep with her, such as not wanting to sleep with her. Jenna's explanation of all this confirms Alison got the USB drive from Ian in Hilton Head, which means the entire season snaps into a somewhat clear focus nearly immediately: Ian is not a red herring, Ian has been taping these young girls since they were children, and possibly this is all he needed to go crazy and kill Alison.
Except his story -- as he's eventually chasing Spencer through the bell tower of this church and then getting pushed to his hanging death, thanks A, and then having his body disappear in the middle of everything -- doesn't really add up, from what I could tell over the grunting and screaming. I think Ian knocked her out but then somebody else strangled her, and so he died thinking he was a killer of little girls and not just a raper of them. (One assumes Melissa will find a way to make even this Spencer's fault.) Either way, Alison's killer has been found, for now, but even A is like, "You don't really think I'm going to make this easy on you, do you?"
Because also what is going on is, Jenna's secret boyfriend is Garrett the Cop, and his whole friendly act with Spencer and Emily, which seems legit, is also confused by the fact that she was seemingly also working with Ian. This part was confusing, but basically she calls somebody who may or may not be Ian and warns him that they have the USB drive, but then it's Garrett that shows up while she's giving some insane speech about how they're going to fuck everything up.
So we know less about her agenda than we even did before, which is fun, but not as fun as watching those four bitches gang up on her like always, and her doing some insane trainwreck shit like always, but then turning around to make the point that they blinded her and they need to stop being mean to her about it.
Emily's big deal is, her awesome dad wants her and Pam to move to Texas for the year because of his job stuff. Things are just getting exciting with Samara, and also she's solving a murder mystery and being stalked by a global telecommunications conspiracy and constantly running into this one creepy blind girl, so she doesn't really see moving as an option at this time. I think this concern will not signify for long.
Dumbly, Lucas gets all involved in the Caleb/Mona/Hanna Romeo & Juliet scenario, and Mona continues to act odious -- or is possibly obsessed with Hanna, like in an actually obsessive way -- but then all of a sudden Lucas has driven to Arizona and picked up Caleb in the middle of the night, maybe to start a Creepy Stalker Club with their boyband good looks.
At this point Spencer is driving Melissa around town because Ian is too busy getting blackmailed by teenage girls, and what I think happens is that she t-bones or is t-boned by Lucas and Caleb, but then it never comes up again, so maybe I made that part up. Probably the show thought that the idea of Lucas driving cross-country to pick up Caleb on his own initiative was so fucking insane that it didn't need any extra cliffhanger on it. (Also: Toby made it sound like Spencer sent him to distract the Jenna Thang one more time to keep her out of their sting operation, but that's a lot even for this show.)
So they anonymously text Ian to bring a bunch of money, like trying to get his confession under the guise of blackmail, and they meet Garrett in the woods. But then instead of Ian dropping off the money it's this new cute boy Logan Reed who looks like he does more drugs than Jason DiLaurentis, so they know that Ian is onto them, and then Ian has followed Spencer to this church and he tries to kill her but he doesn't, the end.
Body Count: Ian (thinks he) killed Alison, A (it looked like) killed Ian, Spencer may have killed Lucas and/or Caleb and/or her pregnant sister and/or the baby, Ezra Fitz has left the building, and Noel Kahn is back. Cheers once again to the Short Hiatus, and I'll see you June 14th, Tuesday, when the second season premieres on its new night.
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So what's on that flash drive the girls found in that improbable lunchbox? Videos of all four of them, videos of Jenna and Toby doing it brother-sister style, the whole thing. Whatever is creepy, that's what's on them. The girls all get weirded out by Video Jenna blackmailing Toby into making out with her, but I guess they didn't all officially know the hows and whys. It's super gross, and of course Spencer -- now that she's always been Toby's best friend in the entire universe -- shuts it down immediately, like, just as Jenna's getting his shirt off.
Aria: "Why do you think a person would want videos of young girls changing their clothes in the privacy of their own homes?"
Hanna: "Do you think someone was watching us and getting it off on it?"
Spencer: "Think about that too long and you'll go insane. Since I'm already insane, I have perspective on this. Let's focus on how this can be used to prove my pet theory that Ian killed Alison. We will need Jenna's help."
Hanna: "You mean Jenna the girl we blew up?"
Spencer: "Yeah, it won't be easy."
The last thing that went down with Ezra is that Suddenly Garrett -- the young policeman who is everywhere at once despite never existing until a minute ago -- stopped by his house and saw the stupid paper bags of love and whatnot. So Ezra sent Aria about sixteen terrified-yet-vague text messages and then drifted off to sleep without ever explaining himself, which is why -- when Ella balks at the idea of coming to Byron's faculty mixer at their house tonight -- Aria has no time at all for her mother's shit and just hisses, "Look, Dad cares too much to say this, but: You either love him or you don't. So you should probably figure it out, because it sucks for all of us."
Mother/daughterhood being what it is, we transition over to Hanna and Ashley, who have a sad but sweet little convo about how Caleb left town for reasons Ashley doesn't know and desperately wants to know but doesn't want to pry into, and Hanna just slumps around and feels gross and awkward about it, and in the interests of good momhood Ashley's like, "So, what was in the letter that Mona stole and ripped into a thousand pieces and burned into ashes and stomped on and peed on like a crazy gorilla instead of a little girl?" Hanna blips right over that one and back into her depression: Letter? What letter.