Let’s go back to the beginning: Aria’s flu seemed to have gotten worse, as her skin tone was somewhere between Casper-the-Friendly-Ghost White and Hulk-Smash Green. With her dad away at a conference, she was left in the hands of Meredith and her cure-all tea, as the liars had other errands to tend to.
Hanna, for one, was busying fancying herself up for an internship interview with “the hottest designer in Philadelphia” (is that a particularly coveted title?) named Corin. Caleb was over at the Marins’ finishing his homework as she dressed, when Hanna overheard a mysterious phone conversation he had regarding stopping Mona. Concerned that Toby might put himself in harm’s way, Hanna asked Emily to follow Caleb after school to see what he was up to. And it was colluding with Paige—something Emily failed to discover, though, as she left before she could see who Caleb was meeting with. The second-coming of Nancy Drew, she is not.
But Em was up in everyone’s boyfriend business last night, as she also conspired with Spencer to surprise Toby for their anniversary. Emily got his apartment keys while Spencer made up some excuse about having to attend a family dinner that night, when she was really cooking up Grandma’s Lasagna and arranging Scrabble tiles into sweet nothings. (Did anyone else find it strange that Mrs. Hastings didn’t even flinch when she walked in on a shirtless Toby and continued to have, like, a five-minute conversation with Spencer while her BF’s bare torso was on full display?)
Meanwhile, Meredith’s behavior began to take a turn for the strange. She left school to check in on Aria, whose phone had mysteriously disappeared. Mer promised she’d give Ella a status update when she was back at Rosewood High, except instead of telling Mrs. Montgomery that Aria was feeling worse, she told her she was feeling much better. So it wasn’t surprising that when Ella tried to call Aria’s phone, it was Meredith’s bag that vibrated.
Hanna, looking hot but not too hot, turned up at her internship interview, where she seemed to have caught a glimpse of a red-trenched figure across the street. Is that you, Vivian Darkbloom? But all Hanna found inside was an empty boutique. Well, not quite. Rows upon rows of white, blank-faced mannequins greeted her…as did a hooded figure who shoved a dummy into Hanna and fled. “Next time you’ll be left faceless,” the text from A read. Unbeknownst to the intruder, however, he/she left behind a clue: a set of keys. (It’s not coincidental that earlier in the episode we learned that Toby had a hole in his jeans pocket…)
Hanna wasn’t the only one to catch a glimpse of Ali that day. In the grips of a fever dream, Aria had a lengthy conversation with Ali in which the dead girl revealed that Meredith was looking for her diary pages and that the liars saw A every day and that she was surprised Spencer hadn’t figured it out. When Aria awoke, hazy, she found herself locked in her bedroom with no escape. Her captor, meanwhile, was at the pharmacy trying to get a refill for a very strong drug that could be used as a sedative. (Clearly, Meredith’s “cure-all” wasn’t homeopathic…) When Meredith arrived home and unlocked Aria’s door open, she tried to flee, but was caught and struck by Meredith and hauled to the basement. Hanna and Em turned up at Aria’s house to investigate and stupidly let Meredith coax them downstairs, locking them in too. (I mean, who couldn’t have seen that coming a mile away?) Byron returned from his conference early, and found a disturbed Meredith alone in the living room muttering about the diary pages. He finally got downstairs to rescue the girls, but not before he did a lot of reassuring that he wasn’t a murderer. You know, the typical father-daughter bonding stuff.
Smartypants Spencer finally put two and two together when she discovered a Radley ID in Toby’s apartment. She returned home where her BF was reclaiming the key he dropped in Corin’s boutique, revealing his true identity as an A Team member. And with that, Spencer broke down into a weepy mess, and Toby disappeared into the night. Which leaves us with so many questions: Did Toby truly ever love Spencer? Was he romancing her just to get close to the liars? Or was he dragged in by Mona after the fact? Whatever the case, sad sad sad sad.
What did you think of last night’s “Pretty Little Liars”? What are your theories regarding Toby’s involvement in the A Team? How creepy was Meredith drugging Aria? Spill it all in the comments and on Twitter!