The season four drama on “Pretty Little Liars” continued with episode three, “Cat’s Cradle.” Tension is high as the girls continue searching for “A” … and learn that they’re all suspects in Detective Wilden’s murder.
Worried about her mother, Hanna takes Caleb’s advice and searches for clues to prove that her mom was really in New York the night that Wilden was killed. Unfortunately what she discovers doesn’t ease her mind. While her mom initially told her that she went to go see a play in New York, Hanna discovers a bouquet of flowers and a card that reveals that Ashley didn’t end up going to the play.
“Hope you’re feeling better,” the card said. “The show was a dud you didn’t miss anything.”
With evidence mounting against Ashley, Caleb suggests that Hanna talk to an attorney. Hanna heads to the police station to speak with Emily’s mom, but although she doesn’t find Mrs. Fields, she does see a bulletin board covered with pictures of her friends and family.
About to take a picture of the board, she’s stopped by the new officer in town, Detective Holbrook. He tells her that the board is full of people that could be connected to Wilden, and that they remove the faces after they rule out who’s innocent. Her talk with Wilden is interrupted when Melissa Hastings walks into the police station and Holbrook goes to meet with her.
Still unsure about his mother’s death, Toby enlists Spencer’s help in finding more clues. Taking “A’s” suggestion to check the facts in the file, the pair head to Radley to do a little investigating.
After breaking in and finding the window where his mother supposedly jumped to her death, Toby begins to start believing the file on her. Regretting giving “A” the RV, Spencer catches something that’s off. Although the file says that she jumped from the east window, the east window has a roof surrounding it, meaning that the file on his mother’s death isn’t accurate.
A New Alison Clue
After learning that Alison’s old bird held some valuable information, the liars are now searching through her other belongings for more clues. Among notebooks and random knickknacks is something that surprises the girls -- a majestic mask.
Emily and Aria are surprised to find this among Alison’s belongings, but a closer look at it later on reveals that there was actually something underneath the mask … another mask … of Alison’s face. On the opposite side of the mask is a name -- Hector Lime.
Turns out that Hector Lime is an artist who specializes in making horror props. The girls decide to head over to his studio to find out more about why he made them. Letting them into his studio, he offers them a barter – he’ll give them some information in exchange for a mask of Emily’s face.
Emily agrees, and while Hector begins to make the mask, Hanna snoops around his studio.
“I put an ad on Internet looking for a model,” he tells Aria, Hanna and Emily. Hector was looking for a Joan of Arc, someone who was “young, beautiful and a warrior.” “Your friend was perfect,” he told them.
Asking why Alison had a mask of her own face, Hector revealed that she asked for copies so that she could have her friends look like her. However, Hector claims that he no longer has the mold because Alison asked him to break it when he was finished.
The girls leave after he’s finished with Emily’s mask, but they’re not empty-handed. Hanna managed to find something creepy – a mask of Spencer’s sister, Melissa.
“Cleaning up Rosewood one mean mommy at a time,” reads one of “A’s” texts in “Cat’s Cradle.” And Hanna’s mom isn’t the only one in a bit of trouble. After Emily’s accident last week, her parents are now being investigated by family services. Although Emily confessed to stealing her mom’s pain pills, the doctor seems to find her injuries (current and past) a little suspicious.
Things get worse when Emily’s mom is caught getting “handsy” with her outside of school, and her dad is forced to return home from the military when he receives a call from family services as well. To top it all off, Emily receives a taunting picture from “A” of her mom photoshopped with prison bars in front of her.
Meanwhile Caleb confronts Hanna’s dad about the problems going on at the house after Wilden’s death. “Hanna needs to know you’re going to be there for her,” he tells him. But Hanna’s dad blows him off, saying that he’ll keep that in mind.
Hanna’s dad finds Caleb later on that night and reveals that he knows a little more to the story than he initially let on. It turns out that Hanna’s dad saw his ex-wife in Rosewood the night that Wilden was murdered. She came to his house to ask for money, but he left to go help his new wife with something before he could tell her no. When he returned, Ashley was gone … and so was the gun he kept locked in his desk.
Spencer’s mom seems to be clean so far, and Aria decides not to take any chances with her own mother. Her mom’s boyfriend, Zack, asked her to move to Austria for a year with him. While she initially said no, Aria convinces her to go.
Episode three, “Cat’s Cradle,” concludes with “A” playing “Dem Bones” while looking at X-rays of Emily’s injured shoulder.
Amanda Remling studied journalism at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ.
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