“Pretty Little Liars” recap (4.17): “Act normal, bitch!”

Previously on Pretty Little Liars, Shana Costumeshop revealed herself as the Original Emily Fields and then drove our Emily Fields to an abandoned warehouse to meet up with a very alive Alison DiLaurentis. Spencer busted up their reunion by clanging together a bunch of pots and pans behind a pile of old tires, which spooked Ali into fleeing and caused Emily to almost propel her homicide count to two. Hanna dealt with her Caleb breakup by rebounding onto Travis’ lips/balls, but was rescued from her implosion by a plate-hurling Ashley. Ezra threw a Hobbit-sized fit in the middle of the street, smashing his tiny fists on a car and threatening to decapitate a blonde lady (his apparent favorite hobby) before stashing some knives in Kung Fu Jake’s kung fu kicking bag and sharing a brownie a la murder with Aria.

Let this be a lesson to all you gaymos out there: Emily Fields, nearly perfect and mostly Canadian though she most certainly is, does not always react Hufflepuffy to the charity of her friends and girlfriends. You get her a meeting with an Olympic swim team coach, she won’t make out with you for a month. You offer to help her shoulder her burdens, she shouts the word “FEELINGS” at you so loud your brain rattles around in your skull. You keep her from getting her heart figuratively and literally ripped from her chest by her reincarnated first dead girlfriend/first dead girlfriend’s axe-murderer, and you can absolutely forget about being invited to the movies. Which is to say that Emily is not hanging out with Spencer, and she’s not hanging out with Hanna because Hanna is still hanging out with Spencer.

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Instead, Emily is spending her time helping Aria raise Mike, who has stopped living under the DiLaurentis’ porch and started throwing pizza parties back at the Montgomery’s place. Mama Aria isn’t thrilled with the noise or the mess. Mama Emily isn’t thrilled with the two people making out, fully horizontal, on the desk in the living room. She clonks one of them on the head repeatedly like she’s knocking on a door and tells them to scram. But the real thrill appears in the form of Mona Vanderjesus, right outside Aria’s bedroom door. She’s hanging out with Mike these days, thanks to a hookup suggested by the new school guidance counselor (which, sidebar: I am now dying to see Mona interact with him. She ran the table at a freaking haunted asylum. She won’t even have to expend any adrenaline from her hyperreality tank to game this guy). Aria goes, “Are you really into Mike or are you into the fact that he kind of looks like me and smells like me and and lives one door down from me?”

Mona smiles because she doesn’t need to date Mikey to have unfettered access to Aria’s bedroom. She shrugs and toodles on out of there.

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Spencer, meanwhile, hasn’t been to sleep in maybe a week. Between her regular school stuff and extra-curriculars, her deep investigation into decades of doings at Radley, her project of decoding Ali’s diary pages (on her phone), the stress of being estranged from Emily, and tailing Jessica DiLaurentis’ drunk ass around Rosewood 24 hours a day, her schedule is pretty full. I mean, she almost always lacks a normal person’s sense of tact, but when she calls up Hanna and finds out she’s decided to rebound from Caleb with James Patterson novels, she legit snort-laughs because sleeplessness destroys her WASPy decorum. Hanna is undeterred. She’s learning stuff Spencer never even thought about addressing in her weekly sleuthing seminars, so suck on that, Hastings.

The next morning Papa Fields returns Emily’s car keys to her, all, “The mechanic said your GPS and engine were hacked from a remote location, similar to that time you drove to your death in a barn at the behest of a doll that was dressed just like you. Nothing to worry about.” But Emily will worry! She will worry so much that she’ll ride her bike everywhere from now on, thank you very much!

Guess who’s back in town? Maggie Mack! No Malcolm this time, though, which pisses off Ezra so bad. He cannot believe that this child he did not father, this kid he did not adopt, this eight-year-old boy he knew for three months, max, during which time: his underage girlfriend sent him to the emergency room for head stitches, and his underage girlfriend’s best friend kidnapped him — Ezra simply cannot wrap his mind around the fact that Maggie will not let him spend unsupervised time with that little dude. It’s a confusing morning for both of them, to be honest. Maggie can’t seem to understand why her Rosewood landlord won’t give back her security deposit if she doesn’t return all the keys and get her shit out of the apartment. Aria overhears Maggie and Ezra fighting in his classroom but after Maggie storms out, Ezra tells her not to worry about it. “People get what they deserve,” he says. “Sometimes it’s knives in their feet; sometimes it’s their car driving itself right into the sea.”

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Do y’all remember anything about Officer Holbrook? I do not. I remember Detective Roma Maffia, oh yes I do. But not Holbrook. He looks like every other handsome adult white male in Rosewood, so you can count on him being either a negligent father or a child molester. Maybe both. He cozies up to Hanna at that outdoor bookshop on the square that everyone is so fond of these days and I don’t even know, really. Tries to get on her good side. Recommends a book. He’s sorry he is the reason Ashley Marin spent all that time in jail and Hanna almost had to go live with horrible Tom and his horrible wife and their triple-horrible daughter. All of this means he’s working with Cece Drake, I’ll bet you three hundred dollars. He gives Hanna some tips about how to read James Patterson, which made me laugh for a couple of reasons, one of which is that in one of his books he describes popcorn as “grits with high self-esteem” so his character eats popcorn for breakfast, which is a total Hanna Marin move if I’ve ever heard one.

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