Title: Pretty Little Liars S2.E16 “Let the Water Hold Me Down”
Released: 2012

Man, I don’t know about you guys, but I am seriously over A. Why can’t this show move on?! There’s so much other crazy shizz that happens! Start looking into some of that! This A shizz is played out!

Um, hi. Happy Tuesday. Let’s discuss last night’s Pretty Little Liars, shall we?

Ooh! Spencer’s got a fire going in her fireplace! It looks so warm and inviting. I want to be invited over! Hanna is still lake-water wet and staring into the fire. The girls are trying to console her while gently asking her to accept the possibility that Lucas is dead. Hanna and I both refuse to accept this! He’s alive! We can feel it! Aria just can’t believe Lucas was working with A; he’s so gentle and peaceful. Hanna admits that Lucas destroyed the Memenchication out of rage against Alison.

Hanna has a headache so she goes to swallow some Tylenol with water from her bottle . . . but it’s been replaced with lake water! But how?! Hanna’s bag was locked in Spencer’s car! Just then, a text. “No fun chugging lake water, is it? Choke on this, bitch. — A” Drink! The flames in the fireplace roar in theatrical support. Honestly, this is sort of weaksauce for A. It’s like the time she made Hanna eat all the cupcakes. Cupcakes are fun! Step up your game, A.

Credits. Necromancy. Family show!

Hanna’s Kitchen of Carbs and Cash. Lucas called his parents! HE’S ALIVE! He won’t tell them where he is or how he is, though. Prozzie Mom wants to call and offer her support/responsibility for Hanna’s part in the situation. Man. Have you realized that the model for good parenting is now the woman who SLEPT WITH A DETECTIVE to get her daughter out of serving jail time? Suck on that, Holly Marie Combs, Child Bride!

(Related: I miss Major Hot Dad.)

At Spencer’s house, she’s showing the girls all the evidence that A left around her lake house: product-placed prepaid cellphones and a receipt from some store that has an address in Philly. A could have used the lake house anytime, Spencer yelps! Much like white shoes, Spencer’s family never uses it after Labor Day. Spencer and Aria decide to travel to Philly after school to check it out. Spencer also uses this time to take Hanna to task for doing it with Caleb on her Nana’s couch. “There are, like, four beds!” Yeah but . . . aren’t those your Nana’s beds?

School! Aria, who is wearing a hat that I think someone might have knitted out of the butt-flap portion of a Forever Lazy, is telling Spencer that Appropriately Aged Suitor Holden is back in town. Aria whines about Ezra some more, but the camera pans out and I catch a glimpse of Aria’s burgundy fake-fur cropped vest and momentarily lose both eyesight and the ability to restrain myself from retching.

Feast thine eyes upon this glory.

Okay, I’m back. Oh, look. It’s Appropriately Aged Suitor Holden! And he’s come to ask Aria out on a date! He called Actor/Director Chad Lowe first to ask permission. Spencer is appalled that people still do that (did people ever do that? I mean, after 1812?), but laughs when Holden promises her a hand-written thank you note for letting him interrupt her convo with Aria. I guess Aria gets no say in this at all! Oh, nostalgia! You’re so quaint, with your gender roles.

Hallways! Mona is upset because Noel has been distant lately. She had to take him skinny-dipping at Caleb’s party just to keep him interested. Hanna’s completely spaced out, and Mona finally calls Hanna on being KIND OF THE WORST FRIEND EVER. I mean, unless Mona’s A. If that’s the case then I guess Mona is the worst friend ever. It’s really a toss up. Isn’t she supposed to be dead at the bottom of a rock quarry by now?

The truth upsets Hanna enough to go into the bathroom stall and cry. She hears someone come in, but we don’t see who it is.

Outside in the courtyard, Emily gets a phone call. The caller wants to stay anonymous and say dirty things. But wait! It’s just Maya! She asks out Emily for a concert that night (and asks Em if she can score Maya a fake ID) but then she looks concerned and guilty when another call comes through. Another girl? Her counselor from Gay Away Camp, checking up on how her newfound pretend heterosexuality is treating her? Or A??

In the bathroom, no one is answering to Hanna’s call. But water comes flowing under the stall. AHHH!! If this is turning into a sewage thing . . . oh, no. It’s just an overflowed sink with a tiny boat floating in it. Aaaaand a text: “Life is but a dream, Hanna. But I’m your nightmare. –A” Drink!! Also, lame, A. STEP THE FUCK UP.

Courtyard. Aria’s buying tickets to some playoff game with her phone. She’s going to take Holden, on the assumption that Ezra, who you will now remember is into sports, will be there. Spencer’s having phone trouble, but it’s gotten so that I don’t understand whether this is a plot point or some sort of product placement commercial or if the writing staff is just as bored as I am and needs to put in some filler.

Hanna’s Kitchen of Carbs and Cash. Caleb, who has cut and washed his hair, is worried about Lucas. He wants to help him! Hanna is less than interested, which leads Caleb to wonder what her deal is. “We’ve always told each other the truth!” Um, when has that ever been true, Caleb? When you were getting money to spy on her or when she didn’t tell you about being stalked by a crazy person? I mean, she hasn’t told you the truth about your haircut, and she’s known you for a year now.

Caleb storms out and Hanna gets a text . . . but it’s just from Mona. “Need to talk.”

On the Only Street in Philly, Aria and Spencer are looking for the store that the receipt was from. It’s just a newsstand! Aria and Spencer can’t figure out the connection and they think that maybe it’s just from Spencer’s parents or Melissa, who all work in the city. Or maybe A loves Hello! magazine. I love Hello! magazine. But then! Spencer sees a bunch of blind people walking around! Blind people . . . like Jenna!

Crisis hotline. Maya has come to pick up Emily, but she gets a text that she has to deal with. More guilty faces!!

Philly. Spencer is following the trail of blind people to the rehabilitation center from whence they came. She goes in to inquire after Jenna, but patient records are confidential! Luckily a kindly young man overhears and explains that he knows Jenna! Um, lucky him?

Oh, P.S. A Cinderella Story: Once Upon a Song, the one with Lucy Hale, will be on this Sunday. Adjust your DVRs and expectations accordingly.

Hanna’s Kitchen of Carbs and Cash. She’s washing out her water bottle when Emily comes home. Em knows that Maya’s keeping something from her! She keeps getting these calls and texts, and Maya looks worried! Em wants to know what secret Maya is keeping! Oh, this show. I love it so much. These girls have so many varied social disorders; I can’t begin to count them all.

Center for the Blind Informants. The blind informant (who still doesn’t have a name, so it’s either this or “Awful Curly-Haired Person”) tells Spencer how much Jenna helped him. She was so focused; she wanted to get out and do things! She taught him how to live again!

Spencer’s on her way out and has to sign the visitor log. So she conveniently takes this time to steal one of the school’s sign in books.

Hanna’s Kitchen of Carbs and Cash. Emily is borrowing Aria’s fake ID for Maya. They’re going to Jersey for the concert! MAYBE THEY’RE SEEING BON JOVI!!!! Em and Aria are sad to be leaving Hanna all alone.

Oohhh. It’s a PLAY that Aria had tickets for, not a playoff. That makes MUCH more sense. They’re watching an Arthur Miller play. Oh, it all makes so much more sense now. Holden gives Aria a bag of gummy bears, just like from when she was a kid. Then she sees Fitz! They walk towards each other in slow-motion, but Holden interrupts them. Alas, their love was not meant to be.

Philly. Spencer has found herself alone in a Rough Neighborhood, by which I mean there may be a potted plant out of place. She’s freaking out but then she runs into Mona! Mona’s still upset about Hanna’s absentee friendship. Noel broke up with her! In her distress, Mona bought five cashmere blend sweater sets! She doesn’t even wear sweater sets! Or blends! God, I love Mona so much. Spencer tells Mona that Noel’s a scrub, and Mona can do better!

After the play, some Rosewood teacher is chatting Aria and Holden’s ears off about how nice it is to see young people at the theatre. One time this happened to me, except the old lady gave us her awesome box seats to “support our passion.” The teacher tells them that she went with Fitz, but he had to leave a few minutes in. Cause his arthritis was acting up, I presume.

Hanna’s. She’s not entirely alone, because Prozzie Mom is upstairs. Hanna’s leaving a voicemail for Caleb when the kitchen door blows open. Hanna doesn’t see the muddy shoeprints leading into the house!!

At the concert, Maya and Emily are waiting to get in when Maya gets another text. She looks guilty. But then, she explains! Maya hooked up with someone at Gay Away camp! She’s felt guilty for not saying anything to Em. Em’s totally cool with it, since it’s not like she didn’t hook up with people too. But then Emily gets super quizzical when Maya reveals she hooked up with a BOY. (well, that does make sense. It’s Gay Away Camp. They probably had to have Simulated Sexual Interactions For The Glory Of Jesus.)

Look, if heterosexual people can be faux!lesbians at summer camp, I don’t see why it can’t be the other way around too.

Holden is walking Aria home and he has seen through her lovesick disguise. He asks her out (as friends) and it looks like he’s going to help cover her extended affair with the Inappropriately Aged Mr. Fitz. Holden, you’re a good kid. But you’re kind of dumb.

At Hanna’s, Gloved McEvilson is walking around! But no! It’s just Lucas! (Or maybe it’s both; who can say?) Lucas is looking all wet and rough. Rawr. He never wanted to hurt her, he pleads. Hanna is way too freaked out to even listen to Lucas, so she calls Caleb, who conveniently happened to be wandering around outside. He comes running up the stairs! But then Lucas insists on unburdening himself!! (Not sexually. Just emotionally.) And is he, in fact, A’s henchman? No. The problem is that Lucas took money that Caleb had left him for safekeeping (about 4 grand) and he bet it on a basketball tournament. And lost it all. Ha ha ha! Lucas is a gambling addict! That’s all! Or rather, that’s comparatively all! Not to make light of gambling addicts! That’s a serious disease! But at least he’s not out murdering people!

Caleb is pissed, but Lucas hands Caleb a wad of cash, which he got by selling all of his collectibles. (That’s where he’s been all night, roaming around to different comic book stores and trading in his first editions for money. Oh, Lucas.) It’s not all the money, but he swears he’ll make it up to Caleb. Oh, Lucas. Caleb and Hanna are still upset with him, because they are the VERY WORST. I mean, yes, okay. Lucas shouldn’t have stolen Caleb’s money, and when he lost it, he should have immediately told Caleb the truth. (Though considering he lost the money two days ago, and then tried to tell Hanna about it THE NEXT DAY, that’s not so bad.) But, you know, it’s not exactly like Caleb earned that money in an above-board legal operation in the first place. And also WHY ARE YOU LETTING SOME SIXTEEN YEAR OLD WATCH FOUR GRAND FOR YOU? And ALSO ALSO, Lucas is letting Caleb live with him rent-free AND has bailed him out of his numerous messes (much to the detriment of Lucas’s own happiness), like, just because he’s a nice dude. So I think they should maybe go a little easier on him! Though Hanna softly says, “you’re not who I thought you were,” Lucas is too upset to hear the relief in that statement.

Spencer’s. They’re hashing out Lucas’s innocence and looking at the sign-in book that Spencer stole . . . it’s from the year that Ali went missing. And guess who didn’t show up the day before her disappearance (as Jenna claims)? Ali! But guess who did show up the night of Ali’s disappearance, in order to sign Jenna out all night? Garrett.

The girls discuss this implication while opening cartons of Chinese takeout, and in one, EWWWWW!! There are worms. NO! This is going to put me off Chinese for at least a week! Show, what are you doing to me?? Emily gets a text. “This is what live bait looks like. Now we’re even, bitches. –A” What does that even mean, A? Even for what? Much like the anonymous antagonist in Janet Jackson’s classic song, “What Have You Done For Me Lately?,” the answer is NOTHING. They have done NOTHING TO YOU. Probably! Unless you’re Lucas, Mona, Toby, Kat from 10 Things, Maya, Holden or any of the other supposed friends to whom the four little liars are shitty individuals. In which case, you have a point.

Credits. Gloved McEvilson is climbing up some scaffolding and unscrewing some bolts. Scaffolding like the kind that Toby works on? NOOOOOOO. GLOVED MCEVILSON YOU HAVE GONE TOO FAR.

What are your thoughts, kids? Don’t you feel like A is just getting a little TOO insane lately? I mean, I’m all for getting revenge on people but, shit, I like to sleep too. Get over it, lady/man/combination of people!


Erin is loud, foul-mouthed, an unrepentant lover of trashy movies and believes that champagne should be an every day drink.