When ABC Family began airing promos for Pretty Little Liars, we thought it was going to be a silly summer diversion, something to carry us through the dog days until Gossip Girl returned— but boy, were we wrong. Not only did the show pull in monstrous ratings, it received glowing praise from critics (including us!). It was so well-received, in fact, that ABC Family ordered a full season and decided to split it into two cycles.
The driving force behind Pretty Little Liars success is creator/showrunner/executive producer/writer Marlene King, who conceived the original idea to adapt Sara Shepherd‘s young adult novels into a television series. You might remember Marlene as the writer of Now and Then, If These Walls Could Talk, and Just My Luck.These days, though, you can find her on the Warner Brothers back lot in Burbank, moving between the writers room and the set of Rosewood, PA — home of murder, mayhem, teenage shenanigans, and blossoming lesbian Emily Fields.
I caught up with Marlene earlier this week to talk about the second cycle of Pretty Little Liars and the little lesbian storyline that could.
AfterEllen.com: Congratulations on the success of Pretty Little Liars. You’ve got a real breakout hit on your hands!
AE: That’s exciting.
AE: Were you in Vancouver filming before?
AE: Where are you in your filming schedule? There are 12 episodes left to air, right?
In the first cycle of 10, we got very spoiled because we were filming very close to air date, and so we had instant gratification. Basically, we would finish an episode and it would air the next week. And we got all that great feedback from our fans, who are just tremendous. So, it’s been a little challenging, this back half. We will have completed all of our shows before we air the first one, and we’re missing that feedback we got the first go-around because it was really helpful.
AE: Is that scary?
AE: Is the tone of the second cycle similar to the first cycle of season one?
AE: So you’re not going to tell me if Hannah remembers who “A” is, or if she’s lost her memory, are you?