Pretty Little Liars Review: Dead, Cute Girls Walking

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After an opening episode that set the stage of secrets being kept among the four main characters in Pretty Little Liars, this new ABC Family delved deeper into each girl's past and presence last night.

On "The Jenna Thing," we witnessed just how controlling Alison was of this group and how that sometimes led to dangerous actions whose ramifications are being felt to this day.

What else did we learn about Aria, Hanna, Emily, Spencer and company? Let's analyze what makes each a pretty little liar below:

ARIA: Probably my favorite character so far. She seemed like your basic, conniving, self-centered 16-year old on the pilot, telling off her cheating father and misleading Mr. Fitz in the bar. But this week made it clear that she wants to mean well. She related to her dad and essentially forgave him in her final scene.

She also came across as far more mature than Mr. Fitz, who appears to have a stalker side. He also has a cute side, as Aria couldn't resist his advances. Are we to assume they did more than just make out in his car?

What Does It Say?!?

HANNA: I wanna see more of her life before Alison's disappearance. She has the potential to be the most interesting, layered character, due to the transformation of her body and her personality.

It's difficult to buy the realism of the detective grilling the girls (He asked them what made them fall asleep at a sleepover? What kind of question is that?!?), especially at school. But his creepy presence in the lives of Hanna and her mom is well done. This guy and Ezra should totally exchange stalking secrets!

EMILY: My least favorite character so far, only because her storyline feels so forced and rushed. Could we maybe have gotten to know her better, seen more of her relationship with Ben, before having a lesbian bond shoved so quickly down our throats?

All the conversations she has with Maya seem contrived and unnatural. When Maya told Emily she can see why her and Spencer get along (because they both want to win, Maya reasoned), it just seemed like a discussion scripted to shed more light on both Spencer and Emily. It didn't feel remotely organic to the scene or like an observation Maya could possibly make based on what she knows about Emily.

Of course, as Emily told Hanna: "I'm not the person everyone thinks I am." So perhaps no one really knows much about her.

SPENCER: Her fling with Wren also seems forced. These two have had about three scenes together and are already making out. But at least we can understand why Spencer would want to rebel against her sister and her life at home.

It looks like Melissa has thrown Wren out, but I doubt his relationship with Spencer will end. Allow us to offer this Brit a word of warning, though: did you see how hard Spencer whacked those field hockey balls? Don't cross her, dude.

The Quartet

Let's conclude with the closing scene of the episode. Did we discover that Jenna has been sending the texts (which included such A-signed gems as "Dead girls walking" and "Did you get a goodnight kiss? Here's one from me. xo.")?

This would be an early resolution to the biggest mystery so far on the series - but I do hope they clear it up soon. While I'm incredibly curious about what's going on, it could get old if the girls simply get texts after every major incident. Once it's established someone is aware of their actions, we do need to see movement on what this person might do about that other than use his/her cell phone.

Perhaps it's The Vampire Diaries or Lost fan in me, but I also want to see more flashbacks. These have delivered solid insight into each character and, just as importantly, their interactions with one another.

What did you think of the episode? Has Pretty Little Liars earned a spot on your must-watch list every Tuesday night? Check out a promo for next wee HERE and sound off now!

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Review

Editor Rating: 4.1 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (79 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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Pretty Little Liars Season 1 Episode 2 Quotes

Aria: Have you found a way to forget?!?
Spencer: Aria, it was an accident.

Telling the police now about what happened to Jenna isn't gonna make Jenna see again. It will just ruin our lives.

Spencer

Pretty Little Liars Season 1 Episode 2 Music

  Song Artist
Crazy 2 Crazy Katie Herzig iTunes
What i like What I Like Jackie James iTunes
Falling for the first time Falling for the First Time Jules Larson iTunes