“Pretty Little Liars” is back with new episodes on Tuesday, Jan. 7! The ABC Family series has been on break for a couple months, but "Liars" lovers needn't fret. We’re here to get you up to speed on all the drama regarding “A,” Alison, Ezra and your four favorite high school students before 4B premieres.
Detective Wilden’s Murder
Hanna’s mom, Ashley, was initially being charged with Detective Wilden’s murder. Things definitely didn’t look good for the redhead (the mud-covered heels), but all charges against her were dropped when Travis came through with some information that the cops didn’t have. Now the cops have a new suspect in Wilden’s death … and it's CeCe.
Wren And Melissa
Remember when Wren and Melissa were going to live happily ever after in season 1? After Melissa caught Spencer kissing her fiancé, things got ugly in the Hastings house. After breaking off her engagement, she moved on to Ian and Garrett … but with both of those boys dead, it looks like she’s rekindling things with Wren.
The 4A finale of “Pretty Little Liars” found Shauna inside Wren’s apartment (unbeknownst to Spencer). When Spencer ran into Shauna at the coffee shop later, she discovered some papers that Shauna accidentally (or maybe not) left behind … papers that reveal that Wren is moving back in with his ex-fiancé, Melissa.
Thanks to a message from “A” that said, “Watch me make a girl disappear,” the Liars take a trip to Ravenswood to see a magician named Charlemagne. Aria is pulled out of the crowd for a “disappearing act,” but she’s not the girl who disappears. Instead “A” manages to distract everyone while kidnapping Emily.
Locking Emily in a box, “A” set her on a conveyor belt at a lumber mill, headed for the saw. Fortunately, Aria, Spencer and Hanna are able to follow “Red Coat” to the mill and rescue Emily from a grisly death … with the help of “Red Coat.”
In an exciting twist, it’s revealed that there is not one, but two, “Red Coats.” One “Red Coat” managed to hit the stop button that prevented Emily from getting sawed in half, but the other one looks like she’s guilty of locking Emily in.
Spencer chases the “good” “Red Coat” while Aria goes after the “bad” one. Using the martial arts she learned from Jake, Aria manages to unveil that “bad” “Red Coat” is none other than CeCe. But their fight turns ugly and CeCe ends up falling. Initially believing CeCe to be dead, the girls are shocked when her body disappears.
The “A” Lair
Spencer’s chase for “Red Coat” resulted in the unveiling of “A’s” real lair – which features a complex computer system that has been keeping tabs on all of them. A little more digging at the lair revealed that “A” started a corporation and owns men’s jackets, leading the girls to speculate that “A” is a man, not a woman.
The Night Alison Died
Leaving the “A” lair with a clue as to where Alison might be, the girls head off to a Ravenswood town party. But before they make it very far, they run into Mrs. Grunwald, the sorority house mother who had denied knowing Alison. Turns out that Mrs. Grunwald had lied, and she tells the girls the story of the night Alison died.
Alison had been calling Mrs. Grunwald at the sorority house that summer because she was afraid. Since Mrs. Grunwald has the gift of insight, she felt that Alison was in terrible danger. After driving to Rosewood the night that Alison went missing, Mrs. Grunwald walked into Alison’s backyard to find the blonde teen buried underground and reaching for life. Mrs. Grunwald pulled Alison out of the ground and drove her to the hospital. But when she went to go get help, Alison had disappeared.
The former house mother claims that she hasn’t seen Alison since that night … and that Alison won’t turn up until she knows who she can trust.
Who Is “A”?
As the girls prepare for the Ravenswood costume party, a hooded “A” returns to his lair – and is unveiled to be Ezra.
“Pretty Little Liars” fans hoped that Ezra had been framed, like Toby had, but the school teacher’s actions in the Halloween special point to his guilt. Episode 13, “Grave New World,” found Ezra calling Aria to figure out where they are … and then following the girls in a vintage uniform and gas mask.
Hanna calls Caleb to come to Ravenswood to do some digging on “A’s” computer. Hopping on the next bus to town, Caleb meets a girl named Miranda. Like Caleb, Miranda grew up in foster homes. She’s on her way to Ravenswood to meet her only living relative, Raymond.
A Dark Journey
Aria, Spencer, Hanna and Emily’s search for Alison becomes frightening when they get separated. After a couple of run-ins with the man in the gas mask (presumably Ezra), the girls eventually reunite inside the home of Raymond Collins (the uncle to Caleb’s new friend, Miranda). Inside they discover recordings of Alison begging for help. Mrs. Grunwald, the caretaker for Raymond Collins’ place, discovers the girls in the house and explains that she had recorded her phone conversations with Alison that summer and that the recording they were listening to was stolen six months ago.
Before the girls leave the room, Mrs. Grunwald gives them one last clue: “One of you has been touched by the one Alison fears the most.”
Ezra In Shining Armor
After Hanna tells Caleb to stay behind in Ravenswood to help Miranda, the girls hop in Spencer’s car to leave Ravenswood. The only problem is that Spencer’s car has a flat tire and the spare is missing. They're worried about getting home, but their problems are solved when Ezra pulls up behind them. Telling Aria he was worried about her, he gives the girls a ride back to Rosewood.
Ezra drops the four Liars off and they discover “Red Coat” in the woods watching. Chasing after her, they’re shocked when “Red Coat” stops and reveals herself to be none other than Alison.
“Did you miss me?” Alison asks her shocked friends. “Look, I don’t have much time. It’s still not safe for me to be here. I want to come home, but you have to help me.”
With someone approaching, Alison runs off again, but not before telling Hanna, “Remember what I told you at the hospital.”
Season 4B of “Pretty Little Liars” premieres on ABC Family on Tuesday, Jan. 7, at 8 p.m. What do you think will happen? Let us know in the comments section or send a tweet to @AmandaTVScoop.
Amanda Remling studied journalism at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ.
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