Is it really all over? Pretty Little Liars gave fans a satisfying end to its somewhat sleepy Season 5 premiere (“EscApe From New York”) when Shana outed herself as Ezra’s shooter. Ali’s former ally apparently turned on her when she fell in love — yes, l-o-v-e — with Jenna. After that, she started working for the other team — the “A” team. Well, possibly. We’re not entirely sure if Shana was working for “A,” but she was definitely the one who shot Ezra. Let’s not forget that while Shana was fighting Jenna’s battles in New York City, “A” was burying Mrs. DiLaurentis back in Rosewood.
But let’s rewind and start from the beginning of the episode. Most of the action may have happened in final five minutes, but there were enough important developments in “EscApe From New York” to keep us guessing.
Ezra survives. Behold! The worst kept secret in Pretty Little Liars history: Ezra Fitz is alive. Of course, it didn’t take long for Shana — or was that really “A”? — to show up at the hospital and try to kill him. Seriously. She latched onto his ambulance! Luckily, Ali saw “A” and told the Liars. Since Ezra is the only one who knew “A’s” true identity, the Liars commence “Ezra-Watch 2014.” Aria keeps an eye on Ezra, while Ali and the Liars draw “A” away from the hospital.
Total chAos. “A” sends a group text telling his/her lookalikes to “follow the leader.” The “leader” obviously refers to Alison, who leaves the hospital to try and lure “A” away from Ezra. When she finds herself all alone in a dark New York City alley, “A” pops out to creepily ask, “Wanna play?” The Liars think they have “A” trapped when they ambush him/her — but they’re shocked when multiple hooded figures pop out of nowhere and surround them. It turns out “A” was one step ahead again.
Enter Shana. But now Ezra is safe, right? Wrong. Shana comes around to offer Aria “support.” She tells Aria that Ali sent her. And when Aria falls asleep, Shana seizes the opportunity to sneak into Ezra’s hospital room. Aria wakes up and checks on Ezra, and when she gets to his room, she sees Shana standing over his bed. Ezra wakes up and suddenly his heartbeat is erratic — he seems to be looking at Shana. Was he trying to tell Aria that Shana was “A’? It seems pretty likely, seeing as that’s what he whispers in her ear when she goes back to check on him. Aria goes to look for Shana, and — surprise! — she’s gone.
Showtime at the Fitzgerald. Ali takes Hanna, Spencer, and Emily to the Fitzgerald Theater to hide out until Aria can tell them who “A” is. Why the Fitzgerald? Because that’s the place where Ali realized Ezra was just a “rich boy pretending to be poor.” In other words, Ezra’s family owns the theater. And it also happens to be Ali’s sometimes-hiding place. There, the Liars talk about how life would be so different if they didn’t have “A” to deal with. Hanna says she’d like to take up a sport — and no, not cheerleading. It turns out Hanna is a fan of Spencer’s lacrosse skirt. As for Spencer, she doesn’t want to go back to who she was before “A,” because she likes who she is now. (Sadly, we didn’t even miss Aria during this earnest convo.) The Liars have changed so much over the past few years, and now even Ali is having a hard time coming to terms with how much she’s missed.
The CeCe Factor. Shocker: CeCe Drake escaped the Rosewood prison! (Note the sarcasm here.) CeCe shows up at the Fitzgerald in the middle of the night to tell Ali she needs her help to skip town. So Ali calls an emergency meeting with secret-keeper Noel Kahn, and he hands CeCe a wad of cash and Ali’s “Vivian Darkbloom” passport. Ali is giving CeCe her escape plan. Ali and CeCe share one last — and super sweet — goodbye before CeCe heads to the airport in disguise.
Ali comes clean. When Emily catches Ali coming back into the theater alone, she wants to know where Ali has been. She’s done with secrets. Clearly, Ali trusts Emily because she tells her about CeCe. It turns out Ezra was paying CeCe for information — that’s why she was in Ravenswood. Also, CeCe wasn’t Red Coat after all. Ali gave her the coat to distract “A” and try and save Emily from being sawed in half. But CeCe was the one who killed Wilden, and apparently, she did it for Ali.
Mona’s Army. Meanwhile, back in Rosewood, Mona is assembling an army of Ali haters. This includes Lucas — who’s looking kinda hot these days — Paige (or should we say Pigskin?), and Melissa Hastings. Clearly, they all have a reason to hate Ali. Ali tormented Lucas throughout high school, broke up Paige and Emily, and is responsible for Spencer’s old drug problem. Paige seems to have second thoughts about the whole thing, but when she sees Melissa join the party, she seems intrigued enough to stay. Let’s face it: Melissa Hastings isn’t playing games. She is not happy Ali is back in Spencer’s life.
Shana takes the fall. At the end of the episode, Shana barges into the Fitzgerald, guns blazing, and she’s ready to shoot Ali and the Liars. She tells them that she’s doing this all for Jenna, but before she’s able to shoot, Aria — who’s been tipped off by Ezra — comes out from behind her and tries to tackle her to the ground. They struggle before she knocks Shana over and Shana falls to her death. Now that's what you call payback! Who knew Aria had it in her? The Liars seem pretty sure that their “A” nightmare is over, but it’s highly unlikely Shana was “A.” Jenna, on the other hand, is a whole other story. Could she be uber “A”?
- We really want to know who was on “A’s” group message. This implies that the “A” team is still very much in tact. Unless, of course, this was Mona’s Army’s first outing.
- “We always find our way back to each other.” CeCe and Ali’s friendship has been a genuine surprise, and it sounds like CeCe isn’t gone for good.
- What did Melissa tell her dad? Because he’s acting pretty creepy. Why doesn’t he want his wife to know who killed the girl in Ali’s grave? Is he afraid it will uncover another family secret? Melissa tells her dad, "When Spencer finds out, she'll have a reason to come home." What exactly does that mean. Ugh, PLL. Why so cryptic?
- Is it just us or does Freaky Foodies sound like the best show ever?
- Detective Holbrook is still a major hottie... in case you were wondering.
What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!
Catch the next episode of Pretty Little Liars on Tuesday, June 17 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC Family.