After seven long years, give or take a few time jumps, the town of Rosewood is finally at peace.
The series finale of Pretty Little Liars finally brought Aria, Hanna, Emily, Spencer and Alison’s collective nightmare to an end, revealing the identity of A.D. and tying up (nearly) every loose end left untied from the past seven seasons.
Ahead of Tuesday’s finale, executive producer Marlene King — who also wrote and directed the farewell event — told TVLine that the episode would be “structured as a two-hour movie. It’s paced like a feature film, not the way we do regular episodes. … That pacing will feel different and feel special.”
On that much, we can all agree. In fact, given the finale’s jam-packed nature, I’m just going to bullet the biggest events from the episode, which picked up one year after A.D.’s alleged departure. … Cool? Cool. Let’s do this:
* In addition to (still!) planning their wedding, Aria and Ezra were also taking meetings at a movie studio interested in turning their book into a feature film. (During one specific jaunt through the lot, Ezra told Aria that he loves her ugly cry and think it’s “unique,” a fun nod back to this iconic moment.) Aria nearly called off the wedding after discovering that she can’t have children, but Ezra was hearing none of that.
* Alison and Emily were still living together, raising their twin children — yes, twins! — Lily and Grace. They were also still working at Rosewood High School, where a new generation of Liars was already being stalked.
* (Allegedly) no longer as sharp as she used to be thanks to her new meds, Mona moved in with Hanna and Caleb, understandably putting a strain on their relationship. (They were just trying to get pregnant, dagnabbit!)
* Melissa returned to town, and it almost seemed like she and Spencer are finally getting along — save for arguing about which of them gets to sleep in the barn. Of course, it didn’t take long for Melissa to show her true stripes, or rather, her true solids; she was spotted lurking in the bushes, black hoodie and all, during the Liars’ dinner at the Lost Woods. Then, in a twist only PLL could get away with at this point, “Melissa” removed her mask to reveal that she was actually… Mona!
* Toby also returned to town — though he traveled all the way from Africa, apparently — and he got a lot more than he bargained for when he ordered room service to his hotel room… if you know what I mean. (And if you don’t, he and Spencer had sex.)
* At Aria and Ezra’s rehearsal dinner, the #PLLMoms reminisced about old times — like when they were trapped in the wine cellar for what I imagine was a large portion of the Season 6 time jump. (“You know Pam didn’t drink for a year after that?”)
* After getting caught consorting with Emily’s mom, Alison revealed that she was planning a big romantic proposal — which, as Ali noted, did not include the pug sweatshirt she was currently wearing. But Ali’s never been one to let fashion get in her way, so she still delivered the proposal of a lifetime, complete with Emily’s grandmother’s wedding ring. And she said yes!
* That’s when things went completely off the rails: Following Mary Drake’s escape from prison, Spencer was kidnapped by Mona, only to wake up in a mysterious bunker with… her evil twin! That’s right, Spencer has a twin named Alex Drake, who didn’t know a damn thing about her relatives in Rosewood until Wren met her at a bar in London. And it turns out Alex has been in Rosewood for quite some time; not only did she sleep with Toby a few episodes earlier, but she was also the one Ezra saw talking to Wren at the airport a few weeks ago.
* During a brief Q&A session in the bunker, Alex told Spencer to what degree each of the A-Team members were working for her. Sydney, for example, was a “one-off,” while Charlotte — her true half-sister — was a much more integral part of her plan. Perhaps the biggest surprise from this info dump was that Archer pursued Alison on his own after linking up with Mary Drake. (Also, Alex said that even though she paid for Jenna’s eye surgery, she’s “still blind as a bat.”)
* Despite that apparent blindness, it was Jenna who helped Toby figure out that Spencer was actually Alex. And Emily definitely wins the award for Best Reaction: “Out of all the insane theories we’ve jumped to, Spencer having an evil twin has got to be the most insane.”
* Following a nasty scuffle with Alex in the bunker, the Liars emerged victorious and lived to see Aria and Ezra finally tie the knot. And for Hanna to reveal that she’s pregnant! And for Marlene King to make an epic cameo!
* The final moments found Mona running a creepy doll shop in Paris, naturally, though it wasn’t the merchandise that made it such a special place. No, that would be Mona’s secret basement dollhouse, where Alex and Mary Drake will likely live out the rest of their days like living dolls.
* And the final final moments cut to a group of girls enjoying a sleepover on a stormy summer night, only to have their fun interrupted by one of them going missing! (That’s right, ladies and gentlemen — it’s all happening… again.)
OK, time to discuss: Did the finale answer enough of your burning questions? Were you satisfied by the overall ending? Grade the episode below, then drop a comment with your full review.