“Pretty Little Liars” recap (2.16) – Hanna Marin and the Chamber of Secrets


Previously on Pretty Little Liars, Spencer discovered that A has been hanging around her family’s lake house, doing who knows what all on her Nana’s antique furniture and carving demon dolls out of wood like some kind of Geppetto. Emily developed late-onset X-Men-caliber mutations. Aria and Ezra came out to her parents and they reacted exactly how you knew they’d react — Ella was firm aplomb, Byron with wild-eyed hysteria. And during a midnight schooner trip down Lake Hastings, Hanna started to wonder if Lucas was maybe a little creepy, so she just went ahead and murdered him.

The Liars are sitting ’round a campfire, singing songs about prairies and playing their harmonicas and cooking up some s’mores. Emily casually mentions that boy Lucas they used to know five minutes ago, and wonders if A has been blackmailing him the way s/he’s been blackmailing them. Maybe that’s the reason he attacked her that night in the greenhouse. Hanna’s like, “I get that it’s your thing to give every person on earth the benefit of the doubt, and I usually appreciate your grace — God knows I need it. Remember that time I shoplifted a stealth bomber? — but this isn’t Lucas’ first offense. He also bashed up Alison’s memorial the way he wanted to bash up her skull.” The two of them continue to discuss Lucas’ fate, washing down their roasted marshmallow-y treats with lake sludge while Spencer and Aria pretend to listen to anything the other one is saying, but instead just shout, “DOLLS IN MY NANA’S ATTIC!” And “EZBIAN IN MY PANTS!” at each other until the sun comes up.

The next morning Ashley confronts Emily and Hanna over breakfast about some strange voicemails she received last night from a family in The Shire. She’s like, “The calls came in after I’d passed out in my bubble bath after eleven or twelve glasses of wine. You know how I do.” She wants to know if Hanna hosted some kind of murder party without permission. Luckily a fax comes ringing through, so Hanna and Emily are able to sneak out during the commotion.

At Spencer’s house, the Liars gather for their morning debrief. As usual, Spencer takes the reins and hollers clues at them until it’s time to go to school. Today’s clues are: RECEIPTS FROM SMITTTY’S IN PHILLY! PREPAID CELL PHONES! ATTIC WALLPAPER! And not that it’s really a clue, but since she’s already worked herself into a tizzy, Spencer goes ahead and shouts, “FORNICATION UPON MY NANA’S PERSONAL EFFECTS!” hoping to shame Hanna into shagging her hobo elsewhere. Spence wants to take the train to Philly this afternoon and track down this Smitty fellow and dangle him by his ankles off of a rooftop until he offers up additional clues. Aria is game for the day trip; Emily and Hanna, not so much. Emily has crisis hotline work to do, and Hanna has plans with Caleb. He’s going to come over and shine a spotlight in her face and scream Lucas’ name over and over like a police interrogation, and then they’re going to work on their Carson McCullers essay.

At school, Aria is explaining the wonder of Holden Strauss to Spencer — “He’s gorgeous, which makes it believable that I’d be into him. I’ve known him since preschool, which means my parents trust him. And he’s even tinier than me, which means it should be easy enough to stuff him into a cupboard and use him for an alibi.” — when the wonder of Holden Strauss wanders up to Aria and makes some inside jokes and asks her on a date. Spencer thinks Holden and Aria are sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g, but Aria rolls her eyes at the accusation. First of all, Ezra has more plaid button-ups than a lumberjack, so clearly he’s better at tree-based tomfoolery. And second of all, I am so sure Holden could reach even the lowest branch of any tree.

Noel Kahn has broken up with Mona. Do you know how I know? Because Mona’s mascara is smudged and her eyeballs are red and her fingernails are chewed to bits and she’s wearing a sandwich board around her neck that says: Noel Kahn broke up with me. Hanna hasn’t noticed, though, because Hanna is too busy trying to wash the taste of murder and lake glop out of her mouth. Mona is like, “Hanna, do you even remember the time that I thought you had liposuction so I told the whole school and uninvited you to my birthday party, which you crashed anyway, and so I was forced to run over you with my car and then I came to the hospital while you were in traction and did your makeup? That’s what friends do. But you’re too busy worrying about your homicidal tendencies to even listen to my boy problems. You’re a selfish cow, Hanna. I never let my homicidal tendencies get in the way of our friendship.” It’s a fair point. The fact that she has so far restrained herself from making a suit out of Hanna’s skin and wearing it around like a Hanna coat speaks volumes about her affection for her bestie.

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