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We are two weeks away from the Pretty Little Liars season-five summer finale with producers already teasing a #FatalFinale. And considering that, at this time last year, fans found out about Ezra’s pretty little secret and everything changed, there’s no telling what the writers have in store for us this year. I hopped on the phone with executive producer Joseph Dougherty, who wrote Tuesday’s penultimate episode, to chat about what the next hour (or two) has in store.
The Lairs are done with Ali. At the end of the last episode, the Liars had all but decided to go to Lieutenant Tanner and tell her that Ali had lied about being kidnapped. And it sounds like nothing’s changed when things pick back up. “They are very definitely in the same frame of mind,” Dougherty said. “This episode is literally moments later from the end of the previous episode, so they’re still determined to do it.”
Melissa’s secret is coming out, and it will change everything. Since season four’s finale, fans have wondered what it was that Melissa told her father at the police station seemingly regarding Bethany Young and the night Ali died. And come Tuesday, viewers will finally find out. “This is going to permanently and definitively answer a question about what happened the night Ali disappeared, the first night that started everything,” Dougherty said. And along with that secret, we’ll also be getting some more flashbacks to the night Ali disappeared. (Yes, Spencer still has that shovel.) But if you’re like me and you thought Melissa’s secret was going to be the thing that ended the summer season, Dougherty promised that they’ve got an even bigger surprise coming in the summer finale. When I expressed my concern, he simply said, “Well maybe we’re just going to top that.”
Your Ravenswood questions will finally get some answers. After the Pretty Little Liars spinoff, Ravenswood, was canceled after one season, series lead Tyler Blackburn (Caleb) returned to his former home in Rosewood. But when Caleb came back, he brought a lot of baggage with him. “Ever since the fates conspired against us, we’ve been looking for a way to satisfactorily tell people what did happen,” Dougherty said. “And I think the key to Caleb moving on in Rosewood is that he has to share some more, particularly with Hanna, about what happened after that last episode of Ravenswood.” As for Ravenswood characters appearing on the show, Dougherty teased that they might show up in the future but not in the next episode.
Does Emily want another shot with Paige? A photo from this week’s episode shows Paige wearing a very fancy dress, which fans know is not her typical look. “As you know, the return of Alison has profoundly complicated things between Emily and Paige,” Dougherty said. “And I think Paige has pretty much been open about her concern that Emily’s just not done and there’s been a little back and forth. Emily’s very definitive at the end of last week’s episode, [but] Paige doesn’t know about that definitive choice, and I think the issue is, Emily wonders if she can, in good conscience, say, ‘Let’s try this one more time.’”
There’s no Halloween episode this year. This year, the show is switching things up and won’t be doing its annual Halloween episode. As Dougherty put it, “You just can’t do the Olympics every year.” However, there will be “a fan appreciation hour” during ABC Family’s 13 nights of Halloween, and then a little bit later, the first-ever PLL Christmas episode.
What does #FatalFinale mean exactly? When I asked Dougherty if I was going to wind up on the floor after the summer finale, much like I did last year, he responded, “Well if we’ve done our job right, you will. I don’t think we’re kidding around.”
Bonus tease: That glimpse you saw of Alison hooked up to a lie detector test in the promo is not in this next episode, but fans will know more of her narrative soon.
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