(The title makes me think about Jenna as a monster, like "Jenna, the Thing." Just saying.)
Previously, Alison went missing, Aria hooked up with a dude in a bar who turned out to be her new high school English teacher, everyone got strange messages from "A", Hanna got busted shoplifting sunglasses, Emily is crushing on the new neighbor Maya, Spencer flirts with her sister's new fiancé Wren, and they find Alison's body buried by her old house and this blind chick Jenna shows up at Alison's funeral. "A" knows everything.
Random restaurant, our four main girls are eating french fries and discussing how they aren't supposed to discuss "the Jenna thing." Aria has this gem of wisdom, "Ali knew all of our secrets but...we never knew any of hers." This is one of the major points of the whole show. Alison got everyone to tell her their secrets but she was oh so good at not giving up any of hers. Except Spencer. She was the closest to Alison's equal and therefore had something on Alison. Which she is still keeping a secret. Even though Alison is dead. Point for Hanna.
Spencer dishes that Ali was seeing an older boy, with a girlfriend, the summer she went missing but Spencer never found out who said mystery boy was. Emily is still wearing a bracelet that Alison gave each of them which is insignificant in and of itself except it's not because it comes back up later in the show. A bit of in your face foreshadowing, thanks show.
They blah blah blah on about how much they loved Alison even though in reality they all kinda hated her. Then Jenna comes tap, tap, tapping in with her walking stick, looking all of her 35 years and sits with her back to the girls. They get up and bolt because heaven forbid they sit in the same room as a blind chick who can't see them. Jenna scares them. And sits at the bar all lonely. She must have no friends. Aw, poor Jenna.
Hanna's house. Her and her mom get ready with little speaking. The cop that mom slept with is on the TV talking about Alison's murder. Hanna and mom have a little mother daughter talk and I am already tired of Alison this episode. Mom doesn't want to talk whoring herself out to the cop for Hanna's sake so they talk about makeup.
Cut to Aria's house, Aria and her mother, the complete opposite type of family dynamic than the scene before. Everyone was surprised that Hanna wasn't fat anymore. Dad is working a late night, Aria all but accusing him of banging his students again and putting family second then leaves in a huff. Poor Piper is clueless and is just always the best mom ever.
Emily's house. Maya comes over to talk to Emily about the funeral. They share tea or coffee or whatever is in the mug Emily's drinking. Maya's creeped out that Alison's stuff is still in the house and Emily wants the lost posters taken down. There is a hug and Emily's mom comes home and it's kind of awkward. More Alison talk. Em's mom offers Maya to stay over in Emily's room, which is strange and random and out of place but ok. Emily and Maya look way to happy as she accepts.
Back yard. Spencer is whacking the crap outta some field hockey balls or pucks or whatever they use in field hockey. Emily and Maya happen by and offer to bring Spencer with they to the coffee shop but oddly Spencer would rather practice whacking the crap outta balls.
School. Mr. Fitz is walking down the hallway. Aria cuts him off and wants to transfer from his class. He invites her inside his classroom where they talk without pulling down the window shade which I wish they would do. He tries to talk her out of it but she insists she can't sit and watch him teach and call him "Mr. Fitz" because she's a kid and shouldn't be dating her teacher and can't handle a secret relationship. He signs her request for withdrawl. She walks out the door and the hallway that was completely empty is now FULL of kids. What? I didn't hear a bell ring! And they so should have shut the shade on the door but since they didn't make out or hold hands I guess it was safe. This time.
Hanna and Mona make fun of girls. Hanna greets Sean and whoa, that guy is like nearing forty, isn't he? Definitely not in high school unless he flunked the last decade or so. Dude is not all that attractive either. But Hanna is smitten. Go figure. Hope he treats her nice.
Emily's boyfriend is at her locker, kisses her when she closes it. No date tonight guy with teeth too big for his mouth and the only one that looks like he's actually in high school maybe. Maya is staying over which is really not a reason she can't go out on a date with her boyfriend beforehand had but he accepts it in favor of fantasies of two girls in their 'jammies.' The irony here is that his fantasy is more close to reality than actual fantasy.
Emily, Aria, Spencer, and Hanna are called to the office. Aria gets a text from A. "Dead girls walking." Eh, what?
Skeezy cop questions the four minors without parents or lawyers present. Spencer smartly asks if they are being interrogated and he says it's routine follow up. He's being awfully accusatory for just follow up questioning but the girls, since they are children and don't know better, answer his questions. He says that today they said the same thing as a year ago, which makes it sound rehearsed but really, if they are telling the truth and the night was so tragic that it stuck in their minds, wouldn't it be the same story? You tell it like you remember it. He's not buying it.
At lunch they talk about obstruction of justice and they should have told the truth the night of Alison's disappearance. It's making them all sound like they did something to Alison that night and that they are still hiding something from us, the audience.
Tap, tap, tap. Jenna's here! Aria helps the thirty-five year old with her tray and sets her between Emily and Hanna. Jenna tells them that Ali came to visit her in the hospital and their old friend was just misunderstood. Spencer hates her and asks why she isn't at the blind kids' school. Jenna is very nice and pleasant and asks why they are so quiet and not any fun anymore.
Cut to flashback of the girls around a bed trying on clothes and telling Alison how hot she looks in some flowery top. It's not that great of a top. Then Alison looks in the mirror and gets an ugly look on her face and goes to the window yelling "I can see you!" She claims Toby Cavanaugh was in the tree and that he's been spying on them. They wonder if they should tell an adult because, you know, they are all still kids but Alison has a better idea. I wonder, at this point, if she really saw Toby or she just wants to do something to be mean. I think Alison did a lot of things just because she wanted to be mean. She was a true bitch.
Still in the flashback the girls sneak toward a shed. The other girls want to call the cops and not do whatever it is Alison has planned but none of them have a backbone so they let Alison goad them into thinking Toby is a skeevy peeping tom and needs to be taught a lesson. They are going to throw a stink bomb into the shed or garage or whatever the building is which just sounds like a bad idea. Bomb and enclosed spaces never equals something good.
Ali lights it, throws it in, then shuts the door. It looks like a firecracker. They take off and, yep, bet that was a firecracker. There's a loud bang with a giant flash that knocks out all the windows in the garage. Spencer: "Ali what did you do?" Then they bolt for their lives.
Cut back to the cafeteria, Jenna's sunglasses. All their phones ring, except Jenna's, and they all look like someone kicked their puppies. "If only she could see how guilty you look... --A" Haha! Cause it's true!
Mr. Fitz's classroom. Everyone sits, Mona walks in late. He makes them do a crappy in class English assignment, you know, the ones that all English teachers make high school kids do because, really, what did you ever learn in a high school English class? Aria walks in, sets a paper on his desk- her request to transfer was DECLINED it shouts in loud red letters so we can't miss it. Fitz and Aria look at each other weirdly.
Hanna's house. She and Sean are studying at the table. The dude has to be like 38, amiright? She gets him more soda then starts kissing his neck and he stops her because...he must be gay? I mean, it's Hanna and she's totally trying to get him to make out with her. I would totally make out with her and I'm not a lesbian but dang, the girl is smoking hot. He stops her, claiming it's too hard to stop once you start. Hanna insists but he just pushes her off. Hanna gets insecure, as girls do, but he's a preacher's son so he doesn't want to "do it." He kisses her and says super sweet things but he wants to wait, his choice, not his dad's. Hanna's mom comes in to stop it all before it gets awkward.
Yet Hanna's mom decides to make it super awkward by making excuses about not going to church which I am sure all preachers have heard eighty thousand times and Sean's like "we don't care, it's your soul that's going to hell, not mine." Then sketchy cop comes in with take out and mommy doesn't want Sean to witness her slutting herself out so she tells Hanna he has to go. Hanna is grossed out. Me too.
Spencer and her dad are at a restaurant. She wants to take a class at Hollis not for credit but for fun. I agree with daddy- what's the point in that? A lot of money for wasted time. Take your basket weaving at the YMCA, don't spend money on college classes unless they are going to count. Voice of experience here. Aria walks in, her dad doesn't even see Spencer leave.
Spencer and Aria are weirded out about lunch. Aria gets to see Melissa's fiancé, Wren who smiles coyly at Spencer. They bash on Melissa and bond for a moment. Spencer jokingly orders a vodka and soda back at the table but no one is amused. Daddy orders wine, likewise for Melissa and Wren is like "I'll actually have a vodka soda," in his cute accent and I love him despite his penchant for underage girls. You can't hold that against someone on this show or you'll never get anywhere.
Emily's bedroom. Maya is dissecting Emily's friends. Emily is too perfect for words, she always does her best and doesn't care about winning. Spencer, my favoritest gal ever, has a need to win. Maya points out how Alison always seemed to need to be the center of attention and "those girls" usually scare her. Queen bees. Emily has put Maya on this pedestal she doesn't deserve and says she didn't think Maya would be scared of anything. Maya changes the subject and asks if Em has "a side," then they talk about sleeping in the middle and there is innuendo there but I don't get it.
Restaurant, Spencer's family gathering. They play a game called high/low. Wren cutely lets Spencer drink from his glass while daddy and Melissa are caught up talking about how wonderful they themselves are. Wren probably knows she's going to need that drink as much as he does to get through this dinner. Wren jumps in when Spencer can't think of anything to say to play the game. I still, after watching the scene again, don't get the game. I think that they all say something good that happened to them recently and whoever had "the best" thing happen wins. It doesn't sound like fun at all but it does sound like the kind of game the Hastings would love to play. Wren is adorable. After he rescues Spencer, Melissa looks like she might eat his head after they copulate.
Emily can't sleep in bed next to Maya. I wouldn't be able to either; they've known each other for like a week. But then they cuddle and it's supposed to be cute until Em's phone beeps. "Did you get a goodnight kiss? Here's one from me. xo... --A." Technically, A, that's a kiss AND a hug but I think we get the idea. The music is scary and Emily looks worried.
Hanna, next morning. Mom is cooking, skeevy cop is sitting at the table and directing her what kind of eggs he wants. His ass would so be reported to his superior at that point. One night stand banging to clear her kids name is one thing but to be ordered about like an abused wife from that jackass? Should not be tolerated. Not for shoplifting for goodness sake.
Big toothed Ben is driving Emily and Maya to school. I just don't like that dude, he is not good enough for Emily. But she insists on making out with him so she won't feel bad because she cuddled with Maya. The scene ends with the point of the scene to begin with, Emily saying "Maybe I'm not the person who everyone thinks I am." Hanna: "Who is?"
Weird old movie theater, Aria standing outside. Fitz walks up and says her name and before they can blow their cover Piper mom comes up and Aria introduces herto the new English teacher. They are all going to see this old crappy movie in a theater. Mom points out that Aria forgot to mention that he's young and hot and Aria gets defensive but it doesn't get totally awkward until Piper insists that he sit with them...next to Aria. Poor Aria, she won't even be able to concentrate on her favorite movie.
Em's house. Mom asks if Emily's ok. Emily can't say anything because she wants to tell her mom she's a lesbian but she can't. Mom tries to tell her that she'll get past these feelings because she thinks it's about Alison. Emily says that they were friends because of Alison, which I don't agree with because Alison was the worst and brought out the worst in them. Her mom says that they should use Alison to bring them together again, figure out how to say goodbye or whatever.
Spencer's room. Wren walks by and flirts medically. He wants to put his hands on her again. Spencer flirts right back intellectually. Wren is totally cute. Melissa doesn't deserve him. I wish he wasn't hitting on a high school girl but I love Spencer too so I can forgive him. Melissa walks down the stairs and sees her fiancé totally sucking face with Spencer. She doesn't see Spencer push him away and tell him it's not right. In the morning Spencer wakes up to see Wren getting kicked out of the barn.
Hanna and Mona shop. Creepy cop guy stalks them in the parking structure. Hanna starts talking about the sunglasses, he starts talking about the night Ali went missing. He's a terrible cop. Then, the douche says this to Hanna, "Your mom may be hot Hanna, but she's not hot enough to make that go away." Ugh, what an ass. Who gave this guy a badge?
Rain, street, Aria walking out of a coffee house. Stalker Fitz in a car pulls over so she can get in. Though at first I thought he was just going to drive past her which would have been hilarious. The car stops in the middle of the street, it's raining hard so you can't see inside. So they make out. In a car. In the middle of the street.
Emily is alone in a restaurant picture window. She flashes back to when Alison gave them all bracelets with their names on them. It was one of her rare nice moments though when she says "We'll be friends forever" it's in a way that says, now you are part of my cult bitches, not like she actually likes them and wants to be friends with them. The girls don't notice and just put the bracelets on. Ali is a total skank and tries to flirt with Emily who is too sweet and innocent to realize she is being played.
Aria walks into her house dripping wet and all smiles until her father says they need to talk. Aria is not good at hiding her feelings and boy is he ever right about that. Mommy Piper knows something is up. He says he doesn't like to lie but sometimes the truth does more harm than good. Has he ever watched a soap opera ever? I mean, I always think when I watch those, "Why do those people lie? It backfired in their face thirty times before, why would they keep doing it? Like maybe this one time it won't? Just tell the people the truth!"
I understand that we all lie. It makes society go around. "Honey, do these jeans make me look fat?" Regardless of the truth the answer is always no. But for a majority of things, lying has never worked out well for anyone ever. It might bite you in the butt within minutes, or maybe years down the road, but it will always have its pound of flesh. Yet, I don't think we would have good TV if everyone told the truth all the time. I know we wouldn't have this show, look at the name. So, ok Byron Montgomery, we'll go with your truth=harmful scenario for the time being. Make that daughter of yours lie for you. Good teaching for you teaching her morals.
They talk about the girl he had an affair with which is uncomfortable and oddly reflective of what she is dealing with in her relationship with Fitz. Mom Piper and brother come in with two HUGE bags of take out and they decided to eat as a family, awww. Aria goes to change because she didn't bring an umbrella to the coffee shop. On her way upstairs she gets a text. "When students kiss teachers someone gets HURT. That's a promise I'll keep...--A" Aria gets all bug eyed as we go into the last cut.
Spencer is jogging down the road. She stops when she sees Jenna on a bench. Jenna's phone beeps, she picks it up and says "Send text now." And it could be anyone or anything she's texting but OMG SHE'S A! Then she turns toward where Spencer is standing and there is no possible way she knows Spencer is there unless SHE CAN SEE!!! The sunglasses of doom are a lie! Spencer gawks at her in suspenseful silence before the cut to credits.
Aria and Mr. Fitz...I just don't get it. In the bar she may have talked like a college kid but I haven't seen her act that way since. It's like he's trying to justify the relationship and make it work so he can convince himself that it's not wrong, that it is ok for him to have a relationship with his student. Or maybe he just likes to make out with her, I don't know.
Skeevy cop grosses me out. You're supposed to hate him and I do. I can't find a redeeming quality in him. I wish Hanna's mom would just tell him to go jump off a bridge, for realz. The sooner he gets fired for being incompetent and breaking the law himself, the better.
And Jenna. She seems nice in this episode. At the lunch table she was sweet and smiley and didn't say anything too weird. I wonder if that was so later, at the end of the episode, you can be like, "Oh! She was nice to throw them off the trail that she is A and she knows all their secrets because Alison told her in the hospital the one time she visited Jenna ever in her life." Yea, doesn't make total sense to me either, but it's what you're supposed to think.
I liked this episode less than the first episode but it was still good. Wren being totally adorkable upped the letter grade by a plus factor.
Final Grade: B+