Title: Pretty Little Liars S7.E03 “The Talented Mr. Rollins”

Welcome back, friends! I was THISCLOSE to finishing this recap when there was a Cavanaugh house-style explosion outside my window that shook the house and cut my power off. Turns out it was the trasnformer outside my office window, but I like to think it was A trying to stop this recap from going up. Little does he/she/it know, this bitch saves early and often.



I’m having a hard time deciding, so I’m calling a tie between Emily and Aria. Emily has been right from the get-go that Elliott and Mary Drake are up to no good together, and this week, she put the pieces together faster than anyone (with help from Spencer) that Elliott was using drugs and latex masks to make Alison think she was crazy.

And to Aria’s credit, she FINALLY stopped sitting around being useless and started doing something. She threatened that doctor at NuRadley and didn’t give anyone room to argue when she insisted they investigate Amish country. And she was the only one paying close enough attention this week to realize that Hanna is Not Okay, capital N, capital O.


Elliott. See below.



Seriously, NO ONE expected the episode to end like this, and if you say you did, you lyin’.


“I like everything about you, okay? You’re smart, and driven, and sexy as hell.” SIT DOWN, CALEB.


There’s always an outfit worth talking about on this show, so I’m creating a new award for the Liars’ most ridiculous sartorial choices. While Spencer’s burnt orange trench coat blouse thing gave her a run for her money, Emily’s suspenders win for Gayest Emily Has Ever Looked, And Yes, She Once Wore a Sports Jersey and Sleeveless Denim Jacket. (But also, daaaaaaaamn.)


The entire “previously on” is just a refresher on who dated who in high school, as though this show will ever let us forget Haleb, Spoby or Ezria. ::eyeroll:: Also, Emily has entertained a mild flirtation with Sabrina, the barista from Ezra’s Brew-Mart Supercenter. And meanwhile, Elliott’s been keeping Alison heavily medicated and locked up in NuRadley so he can keep control of her family money.


Liars Summit

So committed is she to avoiding questions about her breakup with Jordan, Hanna has purchased a fake engagement ring to wear while in the presence of literally all other people. She’s putting it on when Aria comes in and gets a glimpse of her exposed back, which is covered in burn marks, something Hanna does NOT want to talk about. They join Emily and Spencer in the living room where Emily fills everyone in on seeing Elliott and Mary Drake having a Suspicious and Threatening conversation at NuRadley.

As they are wont to do, the girls Liar Logic™ the shit out of this and ultimately come to the correct assumptions (for once!): 1. Elliott is somehow working with Mary to avenge Charlotte’s death, 2. he doesn’t want anyone to see what he’s doing to Alison in NuRadley, and 3. as her husband and doctor, he’s capable of doing a LOT of damage. They decide to talk to someone in charge at NuRadley, while Spencer will use Toby’s questionable status as a Rosewood Rent-a-Cop to find a connection between Elliott and Mary.

Meanwhile, we check in with Elliot at NuRadley as he walks into Alison’s room to find the bed empty. The door closes behind him and HELL TO THE YES Alison jumps on his back and attempts to choke him with her IV tube. It’s a true thing of beauty.



Unfortunately, Elliott is a grown ass man and managed to overpower Alison and get her on the bed, where he pumps her full of medicine and straps a G.D. Hannibal Lector mask over her face.

Serving Up Some Grande Soy No Whip Medical Malpractice

No attempt to free your friend from being wrongly institutionalized is complete without a latte first, so the Liars head directly to Ezra’s Quik-Brew where Emily runs into Pot Brownie Sabrina. Emily asks if Sabrina would like to go to dinner sometime, but Sabrina gives her a hard pass–it’s just that time Emily tricked Sabrina and stole Ezra’s apartment key left a bad taste in her mouth. The world tilts on its axis as Emily feels the sweet sting of rejection.

Emily, Aria and Hanna then head to NuRadley to convince the doctor-in-charge that Elliot is possibly abusing Alison, and when the Doc doesn’t hear them out, Action Aria makes her first of many appearances of the episode, standing up and telling him that if he doesn’t do something about this, they’ll file complaints against Elliot AND him for having knowledge of the situation and neglecting to do anything about it. BRAVO, ARIA. Unfortunately, in the presence of his boss, Elliot lies and says that he’s only administering Alison a single drug to keep her calm, and the doc takes his word for it. 

As Spencer’s World Burns

While the other Liars are at NuRadley, Spencer takes Mary Drake’s file to Toby’s trailer where she runs into Yvonne. Yvonne is not happy that Toby’s kept Spencer’s secrets from her, especially now that she and Toby are ENGAGED. When Spencer sees the ring, she tucks Mary’s file back in her purse, muttering, “Ok cool cool cool yeah nevermind congrats bye” and all but running from the trailer.


Or as #5YearsForward Toby would say “Mon Dieu!”

She gets home to find Caleb in her kitchen, because he’s still, inexplicably, staying with her in the barn. I mean Jesus, even I have given up on these two by now. Caleb: move out. Spencer tells him about Toby and with just the tiniest bit of wheedling, she gets Caleb to admit to kissing Hanna. But before they can properly talk about it, Spencer’s phone rings with a call from the elusive Jason DiLaurentis, who reports that he had no idea Alison was even in NuRadley.

The others are a little annoyed that Spencer failed to get intel from Toby, but she couldn’t care less at this point. Alison killed Charlotte, and Spencer is all out of sympathy for her. Emily rightly points out that guilty or not, Alison doesn’t deserve to be tortured by her own husband. And since Jason’s Out Of The Country for a few more days, it’s up to them to spring her. They devise a plan for Aria to go through that trunk she and Ezra saw at Alison’s house, and while Emily fetches Aria the housekey, she secretly slips Mary Drake’s file from Spencer’s purse into her own.

The Junk in Elliott’s Trunk

Aria lets herself into Ali’s house while Spencer and Hanna hang back by the car and have an awkward conversation about Hanna kissing Spencer’s boyfriend (not bitter). Hanna swears it was a mistake, and lies about Jordan being her future, and honestly, I’m so ready for a few scenes where the girls are worried about their relationships to one another and not the shit list of boys they have to choose from.

Inside, Aria rifles through the Torture Trunk and pulls out hilariously rusty, old-timey medical equipment, colored contacts, a list, and about a million vials of medications. She is painstakingly taking photos of every little thing when Elliott’s car pulls up. Spencer and Hanna try to stall him, but he goes inside, forcing Aria to sneak out the back.

“I never should have agreed to marry them,” Aria says when they get back to Spencer’s, managing to make someone else’s marriage completely about herself in a way only Aria can. They go through the photos again, and notice a shot of Elliott’s credit card statement, which has a charge for an Amish bed and breakfast the same weekend he and Alison went to his family farm. Is Elliott an Amish kid on the world’s most murderous rumspringa? Anyway, Action Aria decides they should go to Amish country to investigate, and insists that Hanna drive her, so they’re off!

I’ll Have a Pink Drink

As the only Liar to come to terms with the fact that Rosewood is an inescapable black hole of torture and misogyny, Emily has decided to quit fighting it and just get a job in town. She’s the newest bartender at the Radley Hotel, and she’s busy turning heads in her suspenders when Sabrina walks in and sits down. Emily brings her a drink and tries to convince her that she really is into her and meant all that stuff about going out. “I like you, Sabrina, and I think you like me too.” Sabrina’s got her “Um, shhh” face on but Emily keeps stumbling through this super awkward conversation until Sabrina’s girlfriend shows up, kisses her and sits down to order a drink.

Employee of the Month over here goes back to the bar and, on her first day of work, makes a phone call to Spencer in plain view of the entire restaurant. Spencer is going through Aria’s Torture Trunk photos and realizes that the list of ingredients Elliott had written down is a recipe for latex. LIKE TO MAKE MASKS. WILDEN MASKS. Also, there are blue contacts. Emily puts two and two together: Aria thought she was seeing Wilden, but it was actually Elliott trying to make her think she was crazy.

She hangs up as Sabrina approaches the bar and tells her that the girl she saw is actually just Sabrina’s ex-girlfriend, and they’re just friends who sometimes kiss on the mouth. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ And actually, Sabrina hasn’t been able to stop thinking about Emily, so maybe they should go out after all. The universe tilts back into place.

Breaking Amish

And so, Aria and Hanna take a field trip to Amish country where they fail at getting any information out of the Amish Bed and Breakfast proprietors but do manage to meet American Girl: Kirsten, who invites them into a creepy barn to play with her creepy dolls. Because yes, Elliot used to bring Charlotte out here, and Charlotte gave dolls modeled after the Liars to an Amish girl who isn’t even allowed to have dolls with faces on them, much less Liar Barbies.


“Alison’s my favorite. She comes with her own hairbrush, five yellow tank tops, and passports for three secret identities.”

American Girl: Kirsten tells Aria and Hanna she’d seen Elliot and Charlotte kissing, then runs away when a scary old Amish man comes to hustle them off the property. I suppose this is important information because up until this point the Liars didn’t know about Elliot and Charlotte being a couple, even though we did. Right? Right. (Right?)

Anyway, as they’re leaving, Hanna sees an electric cattle prod hanging from the fence and starts having PTSD-style flashbacks of it being used on her in the barn. Aria promises her that Elliot will not get away with this and gets her the heck out of dodge before anyone can question why there would be an electric cattle prod at an Amish farm.

Goodbye, Hastings & Rivers: Private (Heart) Eyes

Back at Spencer’s, Caleb is ready to have A Talk. He tells her there’s a part of him that will always love Hanna, but it’s Spencer he’s wanted—ever since Madrid. He likes her because she’s smart, and driven and sexy as hell (alt title for this episode: The One Where They Tell Us Things We Already Know), but Spencer’s like “Yeah, that’s thing. You like me, while I love you.” Caleb’s face is freaking PAINED but he doesn’t tell her he loves her, only that he wants them to work. Yo Caleb, here’s a pro tip: unless you’re an Ezria shipper, these writers don’t give you what you want.

Consider this Wedding Already Crashed


“Cheers to you, the six strangers who showed up to our engagement party!”

Because Emily has no limits and even fewer fucks to give, she crashes Toby’s engagement party to deliver Mary’s file and ask for his help. “If we can prove Elliot’s trying to hurt Ali, we can expose A.D.,” she says, which is 100% LiarLogic™ nonsense. Toby looks appropriately pissed, but after everyone leaves, he gets out the file and, ignoring Yvonne’s lingeried pleas for him to come to bed, searches the state police database to find that Elliot Rollins had a moving violation from 1958. Even by Rosewood’s wonky time standards, 1958 is way too long ago for Elliot to be telling the truth about his identity.

Elliot and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Emily tries to console Spencer over her breakup (and the subsequent dashing of our Spencer-and-Caleb, mystery-solving, spin-off dreams), but Spencer would rather talk about the stuff Aria found in Elliot’s TortureTrunk. There’s one vial of a stimulant drug that’s almost empty and a quick Google search reveals that high doses of it can cause hallucinations. “Ali wasn’t crazy when she went to Welby, but he’s making sure she is now.”

After seven freaking years, this empty vial of stimulant is the thing that finally pushes Emily and Aria to suggest they go to the police, but Spencer still thinks they don’t have enough evidence. She reaches into her bag for the file, but it’s gone, and just as she and Emily start screaming at each other, Emily’s phone beeps.

Elliot is attempting to move Alison from NuRadley to some unknown location, but all that stimulant he’s been pumping her with must’ve drawn out Season 1 Alison, because dis bitch is fake sleeping in the front seat while sending her friends SOS texts and dropped pins from Elliot’s phone which she somehow managed to steal while he was staring ominously out a window.

Hanna at the wheel, the Liars hit the road and follow the pin as it moves through, what else!, Rosewood’s foggy Woods of Doom. They take a shortcut when they realize that Elliot’s headed toward the lake, but do not realize that Alison has managed to punch Elliot, jump out of the car and run through the woods. Alison dashes in front of Hanna’s car, and Hanna hits her breaks, but not before Elliot streaks out of the woods and goes tumbling over the hood of her car—head first through the windshield.

We end with what might be the most insane shot in PLL history: Elliot’s dead, wide eyes staring directly into Hanna’s PTSD-tortured soul, mouth dripping blood into her lap, while Alison calmly walks back toward the car, nightgown flapping in the wind, and cocks her head at the sight of her husband’s dead body.


Turns out we only had to wait three episodes to find out who the Liars were burying! Also, Mona’s back and THE RETURN OF JENNA.

Kisses bitches,



Rosemary lives in Little Rock, AR with her husband and cocker spaniel. At 16, she plucked a copy of Sloppy Firsts off the "New Releases" shelf and hasn't stopped reading YA since. She is a brand designer who loves tiki drinks, her mid-century modern house, and obsessive Google mapping.