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Pretty Little Liars - Hush... Hush, Sweet Liars (Season Finale) - Review: "Shippers Gonna Ship, Ship, Ship, Ship"


6.20 - "HUSH... HUSH, SWEET LIARS"
Directed by Ron Lagomarsino
Written by I. Marlene King
Reviewed by Gavin Hetherington

SEASON GUIDE




'HUSH HUSH, SWEET LIARS' REVIEW

Oh, Pretty Little Liars. Finale time, which usually means the biggest episode of the season, but for some reason, this finale just didn't seem to reach those far-out heights of its finale predecessors. Don't get me wrong, this was a good episode, and it had a lot of 'shit-is-hitting-the-fan' moments that had me gasping, like, a lot... but I still find myself saying 'but'. We had an insane Twin on PLL reveal, we had true identities being revealed of people with bad intentions, and a few ships reuniting. I don't watch Pretty Little Liars for the ships though, but I am telling you, the romantic involvements of the girls had me more shocked than the dramatic twin reveal, which is something that should have made me gasp. In all honesty, I wasn't surprised by it, or by her accomplice. But more on that later, it's time to dig into the final episode of season six, and it might be the last ever regular season finale - if season 7 is the last, then the next finale will be the series finale. That makes me both happy and sad: happy that I'll stop stressing over this show again, but sad that I'll stop stressing over this show again. Good times.

THE UNNECESSARY DETAILS

Let's just skip through those little unimportant bits of the finale, shall we? Fortunately there wasn't that many, which works in the favour of this finale which I feel I may have a love/hate relationship with. A few of the setbacks was that poor Emily had nothing to do but to tend to others, a.k.a. her season-long arc a.k.a. her entire life. What's a girl to do when her best storyline was resolved like five episodes ago, with her egg donation that ended up going nowhere. Maybe we will see something come from this in season seven, but at the minute, looking back on season six, I cannot recall much of what Emily has done. She's been helpful to the others, for sure, I'm sure Alison would have been much worse off if Emily hadn't been there for her. She briefly mentioned a dream she had of her dad to comfort Alison, who had been seeing dead people. I really feel like the characterisation of Emily stalled a long time ago, and it's time for the writers to give her some last minute juice before the show ends. I'd rather look back on the show and like Emily, rather than pity her. I did enjoy her scenes with Alison though, it's just a shame she can't see through Elliot's bullsh*t. If she figures that one out before the others, then she will have my full respect. I'm glad that Mona had a bigger role in the finale too, but by a bigger role, I mean in a shady stalker kind of way. Unfortunately Mona felt a little unnecessary, like she was just plastered on as an afterthought. Did the writers forget they had Janel Parrish and wrote the script, then just before shooting they thought "shoot, we forgot Mona! Let's just stick her in here, here and here". It made her feel really weird that she kept showing up by following them. I'm pretty sure there's better things Mona could do.

Another moment we could have done without was Toby's talk with Yvonne. I do like the girl, and I like how she said she doesn't "want to turn into the woman who says pick me, not her". She's very independent and I felt the power! But really, what kind of substance did this provide, other than Toby has a girlfriend who isn't Spencer? This finale seemed to be all about ships, so maybe we did need reminding of her. It also showed the cracks in hers and Toby's relationship as he can't tell her the truth, and she knows it. Obviously Yvonne won't be sticking around for long, and the wheels on the Spoby tour bus are turning. It's a downhill spiral for the Spencer and Caleb love affair, which was probably first signalled in this episode by the awkward interaction with Hanna - "I trust Caleb." "Yeah, me too."


Congratulations to Veronica Hastings, too, for winning the election! I was hoping she would, and I half-expected A-moji to ruin it. I'm so glad my worst fears weren't wrong, and I look forward to seeing how Veronica steps up to the plate next season.

LIAR WARS: THE SHIPS STRIKES BACK

No ship was safe on last night's finale. If anything, this finale set up the upcoming devastation of hearts breaking, not just for the characters, but for fans of the ships. Again, I'm not really one to ship, but I felt myself reaching for my mouth and curling up into a ball every time a Liar locked lips with their ex's. The only person who didn't was Spencer (of course Emily didn't either but that isn't a shocker), but even Spencer had some sparks flying with her past beau Toby. Queue the Spoby fans rejoicing! The French scene was cute and it reminded me of how good these two were together in the good old days, but just like Hanna and Caleb, time has moved on and people have changed. Maybe Spencer and Toby could work again? I'm glad they didn't make Spoby the third reunited ship all in one episode, but I'm guessing we can see where they're going. And Toby does look good with glasses, like the Rosewood version of Clark Kent. He's becoming a hero to the girls again after drifting away, which I like. I was starting to forget the old Toby.

And Ezria fans, where are you? I do kind of like a little Aria and Ezra, and I enjoyed their interactions over the book they've been writing. The whole Nicole angle was a nice touch but I feel like we are no further forward with knowing what happened to Nicole either - are we ever going to find out exactly what happened? I feel like that might be a nope. Regardless, I couldn't stop giggling like a little schoolgirl when Aria kissed Ezra... and then he kissed her back! I just couldn't believe they had sex too! It was all so quick, so sudden, I could barely get my bearings! What do I think of it all? I'm still in mixed emotions! I loved when Aria was flying solo in season five and she became a little more independent, so is she regressing back to her old ways? I am a hopeless romantic and I do wish they'd find their true loves and stick with them. I might have screamed a few times during this scene though and had to make sure I was watching it right.


But the scene I definitely had to take two looks at was Haleb! I could hear the outpouring of cries by the newfound Spaleb fans, and to be honest, I cried a little too. I was finding the Spaleb scene quite cute where they're both getting dressed, I mean, who knew getting dressed could be so sexy? And Spencer said "I love you" to Caleb for the FIRST TIME! Dammit boy, why do you have to ruin things for my girl Spencer?! She is still my favourite, so he's kinda crushed my heart by doing something that will hurt her, but I love Hanna too, so I'm so conflicted! The flashback scenes of Hanna and Caleb was heartbreaking, and it was like something you'd find in a rom-com. I can understand that Hanna never stopped loving Caleb, and Caleb is, of course, Hanna's love and they're apparently endgame (I'm sure it was tweeted by someone on the show), but it's happened in such a way that I could literally hear a million tiny hearts breaking when Hanna's and Caleb's lips touched. I couldn't enjoy it because all I could think of was "oh no, poor Spencer!" Gah, why am I so confused?!


HOW MANY LIARS DOES IT TAKE TO
SCREW UP A PLAN?

Apparently only two - Hanna and Aria. I honestly still don't understand what they were trying to achieve. They had Hanna locked up in the Lost Woods Resort, but they were going to wait outside with Home Alone traps for, who they think, Sara Harvey? They literally couldn't have made it easier for themselves? It seems like they went way too elaborate that they tripped up over themselves. It did provide them proof of Mrs. D's twin - though do they even know that Mary Drake is Jessica's sister yet? Do they just think that Mrs. D was still alive? It's hard to tell how they were going to succeed, but then how did Mary Drake get into the house through the trapdoor that nobody else could find in time? She worked quick. How did she have time to knock Hanna out and take her from the room. Did she hand her over to A-moji? Because she isn't the one dragging Hanna at the end, right? She absolutely can't be if she's talking with Elliot in Alison's house.

And I'm sorry, but those masks that these people are wearing are eerily too good that it's just not possible! I can't believe that he'd look like Detective Wilden that well, it was far too convincing. Does this mean I can get a mask of Channing Tatum's face and pretend to be like him and nobody would realise? I feel very strongly about these masks; it's giving the writers too much power and freedom to do what they want to do, regardless of plausibility. But I was freaked out by Alison's ghostly visits, and the phone call especially. It was very hard not to get a chill from that voice as Andrea Parker is just such a great actress.

SEEING DOUBLE

Hands up if you didn't see the twin reveal coming? Everybody saw it coming? I'm pretty sure the guy I met in my dream 3 days ago knew the twin would be Jessica DiLaurentis! It wasn't surprising. I think if they didn't promote a hashtag Twin on PLL, then the reveal would have been very surprising. If I had no clue there was going to be a twin reveal, then the moment Mary stepped out of the shadows, I would have been gobsmacked. It was the hype that let this reveal down, which unfortunately happens a lot on this show. Like the characters on the show, they need to learn to keep their mouths closed if they want to have any effect with these moments. I think we all knew that Elliot Rollins is shady as f*ck too. There's always been something a little not right with him. Having him in league with Mary was a nice touch though, and is he British? Related to Wren by any chance? Even though I expected it, I probably dislike Elliot even more now. He's been messing with Alison, making her crazy. I really, really don't like him.


Hanna isn't dead. That's a given. She was in the flash-forward at the end of the mid-season finale, when she and the others storm into Alison's classroom, so let's not kid ourselves. It was a very good ending though, and I enjoyed it a lot. The recurring image of the girls getting a text and then looking around - check. Someone being dragged along the floor - check. It's all the makings of a classic Pretty Little Liars episode. The text was awesome too - "Thanks for giving me Hanna. You're free to go. A.D." Who the hell is A.D.? It's not Alison DiLaurentis, that's for sure, as that's the most obvious one. In biblical terms, A.D. means the Year of the Lord - does this mean season 7 will be THE year of THE villain that ends all villains?!

Let's bloody hope so.

EPISODE VERDICT

This finale was no "Welcome to the Dollhouse", which I loved so, so much more. This felt more like an episode for shippers to either cry out in joy or... just cry. I felt the action was too condensed at the end to make this one of those be all, end all finales that we have kind of grown accustom to. The stakes didn't feel as high as it should be, and we all know Hanna isn't dead, so the cliffhanger just felt a little too anti-climactic. Having said that, I can't ever hate on Pretty Little Liars. I love this show, and this finale was a good episode, I was just hoping for better from the Twin Reveal. It would have been so much better if they didn't announce a twin reveal at all. Nevertheless, I will take what we were given, as there was so much to enjoy about the episode - the return of Andrea Parker, the creepy hauntings of Alison, the drama between the characters ... it all shaped up a very nice finale.


EPISODE AWARDS

Prettiest Little Liar: Spencer Hastings.

Boyfriend Material: Caleb, yet again! But me and him will be having words!

Biggest Asshole: Elliot Rollins. And Mary Drake, but I still think Rollins is one unimaginable bastard.

Most Sympathetic Character: Alison DiLaurentis - she is going through so damn much.

Favourite Episode Pairing: Hanna and Caleb - for the flashbacks that I found so heartbreaking.

Best Line: "I never stopped loving you" - Hanna. It was a bit of a heart-stopping line.

Funniest Line: "I'm glad you care enough to be concerned about my panties" - Spencer.

Best Moment: The final scene with Hanna being dragged across the floor.

Saddest Moment: Hanna returning to the apartment in the flashback... and Caleb's not there.

Creepiest Moment: The dead have returned!!

Shadiest Moment: Mona really was a bit of a stalker in this episode, it was a little strange.

Funniest Moment: Aria's rant about Gillian before she realises she loved the book.

Damned Disappointment: Still no clue who killed Charlotte or who A-moji is.

Biggest Question Mark Award: Is A-moji Rollins or Mary, or someone entirely different? (I'm thinking someone entirely different, but maybe working with them). Also, who is A.D.?

Biggest ReveAl: Jessica DiLaurentis has a twin - Mary Drake (but even then, it wasn't a shocker). Also, Charlotte was adopted, making her and Alison cousins, not sisters.

What did you think of the season six finale? Did it live up to your expectations? Let me know your thoughts on the last episode of season six in the comments and join me in waiting anxiously for season seven!

About the Author - Gavin Hetherington
Award-winning author of the 'Abyssal Sanctuary' series. Gavin joined SpoilerTV in August 2014 and reviews 2 Broke Girls, Mistresses, Pretty Little Liars, Salem, Scream Queens and Sleepy Hollow. Gavin will write previews for Empire, Devious Maids and Shadowhunters, and backs-up Once Upon a Time, Reign, Scandal and Supergirl. You can contact him at gavin@spoilertv.com.
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