Hastings House of Broken Dreams and Sinister Stir-Fry. A lets himself into the house, walks purposefully to the Hastings’ junk drawer, rifles around. Over his shoulder, an angelic figure appears. “Is this what you’re looking for?” she asks, holding up the A-key. The hoodie lifts its head. The head belongs to Toby.
What happens next is like if someone punched your soul in the face. Toby turns around slowly and asks how long Spencer has known and she shows him the Radley badge, before slapping him with the fury of a thousand A-ccusations and a dozen cups of coffee. Toby’s face bounces back like he knows he deserves so much more. Veronica appears, Toby vanishes, Spencer collapses into her mother’s arms. Veronica doesn’t know exactly what happened, but she strokes Spencer’s hair anyway and tries to sooth her: “Oh, sweetheart, I told you to stay away from the proletariat.”
In the five minutes it took Byron to tell his tale and contact the authorities, Meredith cleaned out her apartment and skipped town. Byron wants to know if Aria still thinks he’s a murderer, and she proves that she does not/is a dummy by throwing Ali’s diary pages in the fire.
Spencer goes to Toby’s apartment and collapses against the door, begging for an explanation, pleading for it to be a misunderstanding. I was talking to someone earlier this week about what Hogwarts house Spencer would be in. I keep saying Ravenclaw, but my buddy said she thinks Spencer falls on the Slytherin side of a Slytherin/Gryffindor spectrum, which is valid because Spencer might be a little too manic to really go Ravenclaw. Spencer’s whole deal is: Justice and Being Right, which makes me think Slytherin, because even though Hermione Granger hated being wrong, she was just about the most grace-giving person to ever wear a wizard’s robe. And on her very worst day, what did she ever do? Conjure a couple of birds to attack a guy who deserved it? But Spencer’s darker than that by a mile or two with craftiness and ambition to spare. But now she’s leaning against Toby’s door and crying and praying and saying the two things you thought you’d never hear her say: Tell me how I can show you mercy. Tell me that I’m wrong. Yeah, she’s smart, and she’s cunning too. But that’s the sound of a Gryffindor heart breaking.
Inside Toby’s loft, Mona is helping herself to some anniversary wine. She sips, she smiles, she swoons at her own self. Someone else may be calling the shots, but Mona Vanderwaal is still pulling the trigger.
Marlene King, writer/producer/director, you are a true magician. And we honor you.
A Toby pecs-sized thank you to my screencapping partner Maggie (@margaretrosey), who had to get drunk to make it through last night’s episode. Maggie, you are my hero.