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Pretty Little Liars - Original G'A'ngsters - Review: "I See You"


7.07 - "ORIGINAL G'A'NGSTERS"
Directed by Melanie Mayron
Written by Kateland Brown
Reviewed by Gavin Hetherington

SEASON GUIDE





'ORIGINAL G'A'NGSTERS' REVIEW

The seventh episode in Pretty Little Liars' seventh season proved to be a worthy hour for the show, with minor plot progression for some of the characters, much needed reunions and flashbacks galore. A couple of shady moments thrown in and we have a typical episode of our favourite Freeform show. What I liked a lot about this episode is that we kind of were back to basics - A.D. was on top form with his/her notes, which made the start of this episode a very entertaining one. It was all friends forever until A.D. crashed the party (with writing very similar to the note the bridesmaids gave Pam and Emily later), and the reveal that Sara is dead. I'm still glad she's dead and we don't have to suffer with her on our screens anymore, but of course, a little bump on the cart and Sara's hand just happened to slip from under the sheet. Always has to have the last laugh, doesn't she?

I'm going to jump right in and call out how much I actually love Mary Drake now. She might still be a villain, even though I am starting to believe her somewhat on the things she has been telling Alison and co., but I find her the most fascinating on the show. Her flashback with Jessica revealed to me that we need to see way more of this, and it revealed so much behind Mary's psyche and, in all honesty, really makes me feel quite sorry for her. That could be a bad thing, as she could still be a big bad, but damn I'm a sucker for a good actress. I like the little callback to that scene earlier in the series with Jessica and Jason, as I remember that moment happening, though I cannot remember which episode it was. Good way to tie things together there writers! The revelation of the storm cellar proved very useful too, though that could have been a huge set-up. Only time will tell.

And Jason is back too! About time. I was wondering when he'd get his ruffian-ass back to Rosewood to help his sister out. Too little too late? Maybe, but it is nice to have another familiar face back on the scene. Poor Mary though, as Jason really doesn't like her. It made for a great scene at the dinner table, which had Alison defending Mary Drake, which is rather surprising but oddly touching. And while Jason was back, he wasted no time to reach out to his favourite pretty liar - Aria. Couldn't have picked a worst time for her too, fresh off her engagement, but still he invites her to dinner, and the way they act certainly has Alison raising an eyebrow. Will certain revelations come to light, especially after Aria asked Jason to keep things secret? Most likely. I can't see how his return won't ruffle some feathers in the Ezria department.

Ezra seems to be a little over his head with the engagement, and I expected we would get some wedding planning scenes. I liked his idea of elopement rather than a big lavish wedding, which wasn't actually a terrible idea. It's not a lavish ceremony that we will probably end up getting anyway, because fandom, but the idea sparked some inner conflict for Aria, who didn't seem to have her own two legs to stand on. She worked her way into Alison's family drama via Jason and sat out of cellar exploring, only to have the FBI knock on the door late at night with the news that Nicole could very well be alive. Since she deleted a call from her on Ezra's phone a few days back, I can see that some kind of guilt will consume her enough to tell him what happened. She could be in danger, and Aria prevented her safety. That's next-level. That's jealous girlfriend to a whole new level. Looks like #PLLProposal could turn into a #PLLBreakUp.

It was nice to see Pam again too, as all the parents have gone MIA this season. I didn't care much for the story in this episode though, even if it was her birthday (happy birthday Pam!). What I thought would have been a rather emotional scene sharing stories about their deceased matriarch, turns out it didn't take much for Pam to change her mind about feeling guilty for having fun. That woman partied hard - and she's now got making cucumber sandwiches in her diary! I do like Pam, but a rather unnecessary part of the episode that could have done with something a little more. It even seemed awkward between mother and daughter, like the writers seriously don't know how to write for Emily anymore. And I will say it again, but the writing on the bridesmaids' note was creepily similar to A.D.'s note, am I wrong? Could have just been a glitch on the production part, but nonetheless, creepy. Not much to say on Emily unfortunately.

My dynamic duo are really slaying it this season, as Spencer and Hanna have more scenes together than anyone else, truth be told. Just a few episodes back, things were extremely awkward between the two due to the whole love triangle, love square, whatever thing that was going on. Now they have both cut out their men, and Spencer has let Caleb go, things seem to be better between them. It led to a nice little scene when they sneak into Jenna's apartment and swiftly hide under the bed when somebody comes inside. Nice symmetry when Hanna was there alone and then Caleb came in, and this time it happened to be Noel Khan, who puts a damaged file of Mary Drake into the lockbox while Hanna and Spencer were under the bed. Noel is insane, and he seems like he has a lot of anger inside of him that will probably come out soon, but I also think he's a major red herring, so I'm going to keep a close eye on him. He's definitely not A.D. though, and he maybe killed Sara, but who knows.

A scene shout-out goes to the Spencer and Toby scene where he says goodbye. Does anyone know if he's actually leaving the show? There was so much hope leading up to this moment, as Spencer and Toby meet and he shares a flashback of Jenna almost kissing him. Speaking of Jenna, I do feel sorry for her, even if she is crazy. But then, after Yvonne has an accident, following some good advice from Spencer, Toby decides to heed her suggestion. Oh Spencer, were you hoping he wouldn't actually listen? While I've been over Spoby for years now, I actually wouldn't have minded a rekindling of a romance here, as I feel like both characters have grown and developed so much that it would actually be a good thing. It was sweet that he admitted (finally!) that he was building the house for Spencer, not Yvonne. We all knew it, but I guess it took Spencer a little longer to figure it out. The whole scene was well done, though Toby saying "I'll see ya", to me, was sketchy when the following moment happened...

I love a good group scene, and the last five minutes of this episode did amp up the intensity. I enjoyed the cellar scene very much, revealing another side of Jessica that we didn't understand before. And that's assuming Mary didn't just send them there to make them think it's Jessica's lair when it could actually be hers. I also got suspicious when Aria's file wasn't there, before thinking maybe someone took it, and I wondered if maybe A.D. was Aria Drake... the second child of Mary! But of course, that won't happen, so ignore that theory. When the girls rushed to get back into the car to stop the alarms, only to have the doors lock, it was a classic A move, and I loved the countdown. I would have thought exactly the same, Hanna, if a countdown started on anything - it's gonna blow! Instead, the cellar blew up, and a figure wrote "I See You" on the window at the back. Very creepy moment, especially when Hanna realises and whispers to the others. Great way to end the episode.

EPISODE VERDICT

I'm gonna say it here, but where the HELL is Mona?! She is seriously underused this season and it's not even funny. Besides that, I enjoyed this episode a lot for some of its scenes, including the Mary Drake and Jessica flashback, Spencer and Hanna hiding under the bed, the Spoby scene, the awkward family dinner, and the last five minutes. I like that we may be getting some answers into what happened to Nicole too, finally, so I like where this is heading. Only 3 episodes of 7A to go, and I hope they deliver!


EPISODE AWARDS

Prettiest Little Liar: Spencer Hastings.

Boyfriend Material: Caleb Rivers.

Biggest Asshole: Jason DiLaurentis.

Most Sympathetic Character: Mary Drake.

Favourite Episode Pairing: Spencer and Hanna.

Best Line: Spencer: "We're like a crazy dysfunctional family but we work together, and I just decided I'm at a point in my life where I put the people who have had my back before anyone else."

Funniest Line: Hanna: "There's nothing here." Emily: "Cellars are below ground, Hanna."

Best Moment: The girls are locked in the car.

Saddest Moment: Hear Aria's heart break in two when the FBI told Ezra they have reason to believe Nicole is still alive?

Creepiest Moment: A figure begins to write 'I See You' on the car.
Runner-up: Sara's hand falls out from under the sheet.

Shadiest Moment: Toby says "I'll see ya" and then suddenly "I See You" is written on the car? That is shadier than midnight to me.

Funniest Moment: Hanna looks for a cellar by not looking at the ground.

Damned Disappointment: We didn't see who killed Sara.

Biggest Question Mark Award: Why does A.D. have Aria's file?

Biggest ReveAl: Jason is back!

What did you think of last night's episode? Did you love it? Hate it? Let me know your thoughts on the episode in the comments and tune into the next episode, airing on Freeform on August 16th!



About the Author - Gavin Hetherington
Award-winning author of the 'Abyssal Sanctuary' series. As Senior Staff, Gavin joined SpoilerTV in August 2014 and reviews Dead of SummerDevious Maids, Mistresses, Pretty Little Liars and Salem. Gavin will write previews for Empire and Shadowhunters, and backs-up Once Upon a Time, Reign and Scandal. Gavin also writes special anniversary articles, most recently Charmed. You can contact him at gavin@spoilertv.com.
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