The musings of a feminist pop culture fanatic

Previously on PLL: Mama Marin ran over Wilden. His body went missing, but his car showed up in the Marin garage, so Hanna and Aria pushed it into a lake. Ezra has a stupid kid. Toby is A. Emily found Toby’s parking pass. Spencer found Toby’s body in the woods and promptly lost her damn mind, so she is in Radley now.

We open with Mona putting on makeup while she watches the girls behind her in her compact mirror. The girls are all freaking out because Spencer hasn’t shown up for school. The principal and Melissa come up to her, asking if they know where she is. Apparently, Spencer didn’t come home the night before and Melissa is losing her shit. Melissa is sure the girls know where she is, but they aren’t saying anything. After school ends, the girls start coming up with ideas of where Spencer might be.

Meanwhile, Spencer is in Radley, playing cards. An orderly named Eddie comes in to give her some medicine and check her bandages. She is still identifying herself as Jane Doe. She asks him some questions about various things she has overheard. Apparently, the county psych ward was full, so she got diverted to Radley. A doctor is supposed to come for a psych evaluation soon. Eddie is super nice to Spencer. I am instantly suspicious of him. After he leave, Spencer says “Radley” to herself, like she is trying to remember how she knows it.

Later, Spencer is playing the piano in the Radley common room. She hears someone say her name and turns around to find Dr. Sullivan. Randomly, Spencer says “Olly olly oxen free.” I love crazy Spencer so incredibly much. Dr. Sullivan asks Spencer why she didn’t tell anyone who she is. Spencer said she lost her bag with her ID and just wanted to take a break from being Spencer for a while. Dr. Sullivan asks why she needed a break from her identity and Spencer tells her that Toby is dead. She asks why Spencer didn’t say anything about that to the park rangers, but Spencer said that wouldn’t bring him back. Dr. Sullivan tells Spencer she has to call her family and the park rangers. She tells Spencer to stay put. In the most sad and pathetic voice, Spencer asks herself where she has to go.

Shortly thereafter, Melissa gets to Radley. Their parents are out of the country, but are trying to get home as soon as possible. Melissa tells Spencer she is going to try to get her out of the hospital, but Spencer tells her not to bother. She’s under a 72-hour hold and she isn’t ready to leave, anyway. Melissa asks what happened and Spencer asks how far back she should go with the story. Melissa is freaking out and Spencer is so beyond caring about anything. After Melissa leaves, Eddie comes back to give Spencer some medication. She sees his badge and it turns out Eddie’s last name is “Lamb.” The infamous “E. Lamb” has appeared.

Apparently, Melissa has already let Emily know what happened. Hanna and Aria meet Emily at the coffee shop to find out what happened. They are all completely bewildered by everything and can’t figure out why she was wandering the woods alone at night. Hanna says they need to get Radley, but it is family visits only at this point. Aria doesn’t like the fact that Melissa is the only one who can go see Spencer right now. Emily said she doesn’t either, so she already called Dr. Sullivan. There is so much confidentiality breaking in this episode. It is beyond ridiculous. A little while later, Emily finds Dr. Sullivan on the street and starts bombarding her with questions about Spencer. Instead of saying that she can’t divulge information about a minor patient without written confirmation from her parents detailing what she can say and to whom, Dr. Sullivan just tells Emily everything she knows about Spencer and Toby and Spencer’s mental condition. Oy vey.

The next day, Dr. Sullivan goes back to Radley. She tells Spencer that they haven’t been able to find Toby’s body, but Spencer is adamant he is there. Dr. Sullivan thinks she might have had a full breakdown and imagined Toby being dead. Spencer starts asking to be able to see her friends, but Dr. Sullivan says that can’t happen until after her full mental evaluation. Dr. Sullivan offers to pass a message along to Emily. She says just to tell them she misses them and Dr. Sullivan promises to come back that night. Shortly thereafter, Spencer is asking Eddie about his badge and how it works. Eddie tells her those questions are really suspicious and that’s the type of stuff he is supposed to report. He mentions that they had some problems with the badges a little while ago. Well, yeah, since Mona was stealing them.

A little while later, Eddie comes back and Spencer tells him her theory about Toby and Mona stealing his badge to break in and out of the hospital. He is flummoxed as to why some high school student would need to break in or out of the hospital. When Spencer tells him that it was Mona, he instantly recognizes her name. He says she is a pretty hard person to forget. Eddie tells Spencer there was also a problem with the visitors passes and they suspected someone on the staff. As he leaves, he tells Spencer that she is staying in Mona’s old room. Spencer looks over at her desk and sees a note from A etched into the top. It says “Will the circle be unbroken?” This triggers a flashback to Ali and Spencer sitting in church while everyone is singing the hymn “Will the Circle Be Unbroken.” There are multiple things wrong with this scene. First, Ali and Spencer are just randomly attending church. Neither of their parents are there and neither of them really strike me as a particularly devout person. Secondly, every person in that church is singing the song at a different pitch and tempo. Mona, in particular, is getting super into it. This is back in the Nerdy Mona days. She’s got her eyes closed and is swaying back and forth. Ali and Spencer look over at her and laugh. They love the church and Ali starts making fun of Mona. Spencer turns around and sees Mona standing there, where Ali starts writing in her diary. Spencer asks to see it and Ali says she has to wait until after Ali dies to read it. Spencer says she doesn’t want to see it anyway and Ali says she’ll need it to carry on after Ali is gone.

Later, Spencer is at the piano, playing the aforementioned hymn. Eddie comes over to talk to her. Spencer says she and Melissa used to play “four-handed pieces.” I have never heard anyone refer to piano duets as that. It took me a minute to figure out what the hell she even meant. Moving on. Eddie tells her that he doesn’t hear the name Toby very often. He said he has only ever known one Toby and that boy was the son of a patient there. Eddie said it would be a total coincidence if they were the same person. Yep, they’re totally the same person.

The girls are trying to figure out how to go visit Spencer. Hanna suggests they say they’re Spencer’s cousins. Just because it’s family visits, that doesn’t mean they let in your entire extended family. Seriously? Aria points out that no one would believe that. Emily wants to focus on why Spencer is so sure Toby is dead. Hanna thinks they should just wait until she gets out, since she thinks they have to let her out after 72 hours. They totally don’t have to let her out then, hon. They can keep her as long as they deem necessary. Aria points that out and says that A has been messing with them for so long that one of them was bound to snap. She didn’t think it would be Spencer, but Hanna apparently predicted her in the unofficial betting pool. The other two question why and Hanna says there’s a downside to being too smart. Then Aria says the cruelest thing ever. She tells Emily, “You were never the weak link. Spencer was.” Guys, your best friend is having a total breakdown in a mental institution. Let’s not refer to her as the “weak link.” Holy shit, that was cold. Just then, Mona approaches and snarkily asks where Spencer is. Aria tells her Spencer is in Radley and it’s all her fault.

Somehow, Mona gets into Radley to visit Spencer. She has cookies. Spencer glares at her. Apparently, Mona is there to visit her favorite nurse. She tells Spencer it is important to reward kindness. Spencer asks why Mona killed Toby. Mona is totally messing with Spencer’s mind. Mona tells Spencer to look at all the things that have happened since Spencer turned her down the night of the masquerade ball. She says she believes in second chances because she is a kind a generous person. Spencer assures Mona she is not, though. Spencer tells her that whatever Mona needs, she will not help her. As Spencer gets up to leave, Mona tells her that Ali’s pregnancy was a false alarm. Spencer says there’s no way that Mona can know that, but Mona has Ali’s diaries. She pulls out her iPad and shows Spencer the digital copies of them. She tells Spencer that she has the answers to questions Spencer hasn’t even thought of yet. Spencer rushes over to the piano and sits down. Mona tells her that Spencer needs her. Spencer tells Mona to leave before Spencer starts choking her again. She reminds Mona that she has nothing left to lose. Everyone already thinks she’s crazy. Mona leans in and assures Spencer that she is just as sane as Mona is. That is not at all reassuring, hon.

Hanna and her mom are still dealing with all the Wilden shit. Mama Marin is frantically looking through the newspaper for any information about a hit and run. Hanna points out that if anyone suspected her of anything, she wouldn’t find out about it in the paper. Mama Marin is freaking out about Wilden’s ongoing disappearance. Pastor Ted calls, but Mama Marin doesn’t want to deal with him right now. Hanna answers and confirms her mom’s date for that night. She tells her mom they need to act like everything is fine. Later, Hanna decides to go along on her mom’s coffee date. Not thinking that really fits within the realm of everything being normal, but Hanna and Mama Marin are super close, so who knows? Pastor Ted is excited to see Hanna and says he owes her coffee for connecting him with Caleb’s Uncle Daddy. Apparently, the restoration work is going super well. As Pastor Ted starts to go inside, Wilden comes up to say hello to all of them. He said he had a couple days off and went fishing. Hanna and Mama Marin are totally losing their shit. Also, for some reason, the church bulletin board has a random quote from Emerson about crime. Where is the clever Jesus pun? That is what church bulletin boards are for, people. Later, when Hanna is at the coffee shop with the girls, she gets a picture message of a screenshot from Wilden’s dashboard cam. Naturally, it’s signed “A.”

Hanna goes home to let Mama Marin know what happened with Spencer. Mama Marin decides she wants to cancel her upcoming business trip to New York because there is so much shit going on. Apparently, this trip would lead to a promotion and the Marins relocating to New York. Hanna is all for the move. It’s about time one of them decided to get the fuck out of Rosewood. Mama Marin agrees to go on the trip, but makes Hanna promise she’ll stay at a friend’s house instead of being in the house by herself. A little while later, Hanna and Aria are talking about the Wilden thing. Aria is worried that they’ll be able to find Wilden’s car with the GPS. Hanna says that the GPS can’t work underwater. That’s a scientific fact. I really hope she’s right, or else they are screwed. Mama Marin tells Pastor Ted about the potential promotion. He is sad. He asks if she would tell him if there was another reason she wanted to leave Rosewood. He totally suspects something else is going on. On her way out of town, Mama Marin drops Hanna off at Emily’s house. Just after she leaves, Wilden pulls up. Emily tells Hanna to stay away from Wilden, but Hanna tells her, “Sometimes, the bear pokes you. And sometimes, you poke the bear.” Oh, Hanna. That made no sense at all. Emily looks just as confused, but Hanna says it’s from a movie. Dear, it’s really not. Hanna goes up to Wilden and asks if he is following her and her mom. He says he isn’t and he thought about some stuff while he was out fishing. Wilden says they’re not all being honest with each other. He tells Hanna to just tell him where she put his car and everything will be fine between them.

Ezra still has the damn kid. Aria is still freaking about these issues that are way about her age level. She tries to get her parents to hook Ezra up with a teaching job. Byron goes to visit Ezra and tells him there aren’t any openings at Hollis. Later, the principal calls Aria into his office to find out if she is still dating Ezra because applied to be a substitute teacher. Aria lies her face off and says they were never dating. There is no way that is ending well, Aria.

In a completely random subplot, Costume Shop Shawna (a.k.a. Paige’s ex-girlfriend) apparently knows Olympic swimmer Missy Franklin and she just happens to be in Rosewood. Shawna calls Emily and gets her to come to the coffee shop to meet the Olympian. After Missy leaves, Shawna and Emily have a brief exchange about the fact that Shawna swims and wonder why Paige didn’t mention that.

We end the episode with Spencer in a group therapy session. She tells the others that she knew who she was when the police found her. She knew people would be worried, but she just wanted to fold up and be alone for a while. She says that she wasn’t Spencer Hastings for a whole day and no one else showed up to take the job. Dr. Sullivan tells Spencer that no one else can be her. Spencer retorts that Dr. Sullivan doesn’t have to rub it in. She tells Dr. Sullivan that there are other people there with real problems. She goes into a monologue about what happened when she was in the woods and just about ready to give up on everything. She asks what she has to become to survive when the worst thing has happened. She tells the group members that they don’t know her. When she looks up, she sees her three friends sitting there. Of course, that’s all in Spencer’s mind. She tells the other girls that she’s sorry, but they don’t know her anymore and they can’t count on her. While she talks, tears are streaming down her face. It is probably the best scene of the episode and I can’t get over how amazingly Troian Bellisario is playing this breakdown.

In our closing vignette, a black hoodie looks up a creepy carnival poster. Apparently, A’s lair has gone mobile because the black hoodie then drives the LairMobile down the street.

Next episode: Spencer’s still crazy and we get a creepy carnival.

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