Spoilers for the series finale of Pretty Little Liars lie ahead. You've been warned. — xoxo, A
Most shows wouldn't introduce a character in the second hour of a two-hour series finale and reveal her to be the enigmatic baddie who has been terrorizing the female protagonists for years. Then again, most shows aren't Pretty Little Liars.
The long-running Freeform drama went out with a bang Tuesday night (June 27) when it was revealed that the evil, manipulative mastermind behind all the games was none other than Alex Drake. If that name doesn't ring a bell, don't worry: it shouldn't. She was formally introduced in the series finale. However, her initials — A.D. — should. Oh, and she happens to be Spencer Hastings's psychopathic British twin sister.
Yep. That's right: Spencer has an evil British twin, and she's been tormenting the Liars since her beloved half-sister Charlotte's death in Season 6.
OK, so technically, the Liars have encountered Alex before — they just didn't know it. For years, Alex has perfected the art of being Spencer Hastings, so she's really good at duping Spencer's LIFE-LONG friends. (Uh-huh.) Remember when Hanna hallucinated Spencer when A.D. kidnapped and tortured her in the Season 7 premiere? That was actually Alex. And that time Spencer gave Toby a goodbye kiss at the end of the Season 7A finale? Yep. That was Alex, too. (Unfortunately for Spoby fans, Alex was also the one who hooked up with Toby in the cabin earlier this season — not Spencer. A.D. developed quite a crush on poor Toby.)
As for Alex's motivations, it all goes back to the beginning when she and Spencer were accidentally separated at birth. Mary Drake had no idea she was pregnant with twins, and by the time Spencer had been taken from Radley, Alex hadn't even been born yet. She was ultimately adopted by a wealthy family in London, but after she started exhibiting erratic behavior, she was promptly taken to an orphanage.
TL;DR — Alex had a sad life, but her story really begins the night she encounters Wren (!) at a pub in London. They eventually fall in love and Wren tells her all about Spencer and her charmed life in Rosewood. That's when Alex realizes that Spencer got everything — friends, family, money, love, etc. — she never had. But her jealously doesn't take full effect until after Charlotte's death, and more specifically, after Mona confessed to killing her.
You see, Alex loved Charlotte. Wren introduced the two shortly after Charlotte (as her alias Vivian Darkbloom) hopped on a plane to Paris in Season 5. They became instant best friends. After all, they were the only family either of them had ever really known. So Alex obviously took Charlotte's death pretty hard.
Although she initially only wanted to avenge her sister's death by torturing the Liars until they revealed who killed her, the thrill of the A-game was too much for A.D. to give up. (Archer, we learn, completely acted on his own accord.) So she ultimately returned to Rosewood — after killing Wren and turning him into a diamond (I am not kidding!!!) — to inhabit Spencer's life. And she almost got away with it, too.
In the series finale, she kidnaps the real Spencer and forces her to live in an underground fortress. But A.D.'s plan goes awry when Jenna, of all people, sniffs her out and calls Toby. He alerts the Liars, and all of them ultimately find a way to sneak in to A.D.'s underground facility and rescue Spencer.
Although, we have to give special credit to Toby for being the only one who could tell Spencer and Alex apart. Honestly, girls. I thought you were all best friends!!! Isn't this show's underlying theme the power of female friendship?! Anyway, A.D. is Alex Drake, Spencer's evil British twin sister. The end. Goodbye, you crazy-ass show.