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'Pretty Little Liars' Winter Premiere Recap: The Girls Confront 'A' Face To Face

Mon, January 2, 2012 9:05pm EDT by Andy Swift 19 Comments

The ‘Pretty Little Liars’ are back — and more screwed than ever.

With only 11 weeks until “A”‘s identity is finally revealed, everyone in Rosewood is reaching their breaking point, beginning with “A” itself! On the Jan. 2 winter premiere of Pretty Little Liars, the typically quick-thinking “A” made the grave error of dropping its cell phone — and allowing it to fall right into the hands of our girls, Aria (Lucy Hale), Hanna (Ashley Benson), Emily (Shay Mitchell) and Spencer (Troian Bellisario).

The phone swap immediately followed a heated face-to-face confrontation between “A” and the girls in the greenhouse, where they tricked “A” into meeting them to discuss what they found in Alison’s (Sasha Pieterse) storage box. Actually, most of this week’s premiere was about tricking “A,” as the girls pretended to be at each other’s throats to convince their textual frenemy to trust them as individuals.

But make no mistake about it — this small victory against “A” was compounded by problems in the girls’ love lives, which are all pretty much train wrecks at this point.

Let’s start with Aria and Ezra (Ian Harding), who decided to finally come clean about their sexy after-school activities. As much as I hoped that Byron (Chad Lowe) and Ella (Holly Marie Combs) would be understanding and accepting, they weren’t. Not even a little bit. But they took the news better than Mike (Cody Christian), who literally punched Ezra right in his perfectly shaped mouf.

And while Mike seemed to come around a bit by the end, Aria’s parents weren’t budging — which seems a little hypocritical if you think about it: Didn’t Byron hook up with one of his students?! At least Ezra wasn’t married when he did it.

There was some good news for “Haleb” fans this week: Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) is back in Rosewood! And he’s got a spiffy new hurrcut! It looks like he’ll be staying in town through the end of the year, courtesy of the ever-spineless Lucas (Brendan Robinson), who agreed to let Caleb live with him. Just asking: Does anyone else see this ending terribly? I give that living situation two weeks before Lucas unleashes his creepy hermaphrodite rage all over Caleb. I just hope Lucas doesn’t hit him in the face. That’s his money-maker!

Unfortunately for Hanna, Caleb isn’t the only familiar face in town. It turns out her evil stepsister Kate (Natalie Hall) will also be attending Rosewood High through the end of the year, which means we can expect to see plenty of sisterly drama — and plenty of back fat — in the near future.

Spencer remained knee-deep in relationship drama this week, as she fought to keep her distance from Toby (Keegan Allen) in order to keep him safe from “A.” It looks like the second half of season two is going to be a rocky one for “Spoby” fans. Of all the relationships in Rosewood, I’m thinking this one will be the hardest to keep in tact.

OK, let’s talk — Do you have any new theories about ‘A’ after the winter premiere? It could be anyone, and the clock is ticking, so drop your best guesses in the comments section below!

— Andy Swift

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