“Pretty Little Liars” recap (4.03): Mama Said Knock You Out

Spencer and Toby are sleuthing in their own ways. Spencer, who, by the way, is dressed like Katniss Everdeen’s Prairie Home Companion action figure, is trying to track down the phone number Tippi kept shrieking last week. And Toby is reading his mom’s Radley information over and over again and drowning in despair. Spencer is like, “Honey, here, let me look. I have a lot of experience dissecting what’s inside your family’s therapy files. Did I ever tell you about the time I threw yours into the river…?” She agrees that everything that comes out of Radley is suspect in at least nine ways, and probably they should sneak on over there tonight and have a look-see at the place where his mom supposedly jumped to her death.

In the Marin’s most perfect kitchen, Hanna tries for the one zillionth time to get Ashley to come clean about her shady-ass New York trip. No, Ashley didn’t go shopping. No, she didn’t go out to eat. No, there are no receipts, no people to corroborate her whereabouts, no CCTV footage of her in Times Square. She sat in a room with no people and no windows and one night she went to see Anything Goes by herself with a ticket she paid for with cash, and no she doesn’t have the ticket stub, so don’t bother asking. Hanna goes, “It’s cool, Mom. I believe you. But if you wouldn’t mind completing this lyric for me: ‘Most guys today that women prize today are just…?’” Ashley storms out in a huff, leaving Hannah alone in the kitchen. Sadly, Hanna whispers to no one: “…are just silly gigolos, Mom. Silly gigolos. Anything goes.”

Aria has invited Garrett’s brother over to eat cake and watch The Big Sleep, but this clown isn’t into it. He says black and white movies makes him think his TV is broken. He probably doesn’t even know who Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall are, and when you consider the fact that this episode was written by Joseph Dougherty and directed by Norman Buckley, two absolute champions of film noir, that’s all the commentary you need about Kung Fu Jake. He’s a three-decker toadstool and sauerkraut sandwich, with arsenic sauce. Also, he tells Aria she doesn’t seem like the kind of girl who would be into a relationship where you stay at home and watch old movies and cuddle and talk about your feelings and feel superior to all of your friends who are still out in the scene, and Aria is like, “Ha ha ha. Yeah. I am definitely not into being in a lesbian relationship like that.” (Pretty Little Liar.)

OK, here’s a weird thing: Wren is dead. There is no other way to explain why Rosewood had to recruit another doctor. Wren was competent in all fields of human and veterinary medicine, as well as a trained psychologist and dentist. He required no sleep, could teleport into and out of any building in the greater Philadelphia area, and, most importantly, he could keep his damn mouth shut. Emily’s got a new doctor who doesn’t buy her story about why she doesn’t want to be prescribed any Vicodin for her injured shoulder: “The last time I took it, it made me swim into a wall and crack open my skull. That happened to a friend of mine, I mean. A friend of mine who is a character in a book. A fictional swimmer who smashed her cranium into a fictional wall. I have to go.”

Hanna stops by her mom’s office and digs around in her garbage until she finds a greeting card that’s like, “Sorry you couldn’t make it to New York because you were off doing manslaughter. Love you!” She scowls and shoves the card in Ashley’s face and storms off to school where Caleb explains that innocent people don’t need alibis, and Hanna for real goes, “Man, this blows. I’m going to end up without a mom or a dad.” To the orphan who lived in the school ventilation system and ate cricket sandwiches for like two full seasons, Hanna says that.

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