“Pretty Little Liars” fans now know exactly who killed Alison — and why. The season finale delivered, solving one of the series’ biggest mysteries, while setting up numerous other cliffhangers. It upped the ante, with a truly scary Hitchcockian action sequence, surprising plot twists, and a few of the sweet, funny character moments that are as big a part of the show’s appeal as the the suspense. It’s the best portrayal of female friendship since “Sex and the City” ended, with four girls who are consistently supportive of each other no matter what obstacles they face.
It’s hard to believe that it was less than a year ago that the show debuted, in part because about four seasons worth of story has taken place in twenty two episodes. Here’s the spoiler-filled rundown of what was revealed and what mysteries still remain to be solved.
- The Identity of Alison’s Killer: It’s Ian. And, boy did he get what he deserved. The girls were suspicious of him from the beginning. It turns out they were right. Not only was he seeing the much younger Alison, the pervert had spy-cams in all of the PLLs bedrooms, as well as Jenna’s. The girls’ attempt to trap him by luring him to the park failed when he sent a messenger instead. Spencer (Troian Bellasario) ended up alone with him in the church. He admitted he killed Alison — though he claimed he accidentally hit her in the head when she actually suffocated. That could be important in the second season. He tried to kill Spencer by pushing her off the church bell tower. At the last minute, a mysterious hooded figure rescued Spencer and pushed Ian to his death. The bells’ ropes became Ian’s noose — which made the church bells ring a song of sweet justice.
- Why Jenna Returned to Town: In a flashback from Jenna’s (Tammin Sursok) POV, it was revealed that Alison used Ian’s child porn sex tapes to blackmail Jenna. She had footage of Jenna’s “Flowers in the Attic” relationship with her stepbrother Toby (Keegan Allen). Alison warned that if Jenna revealed that the girls were responsible for the accident that blinded Jenna, she’d make sure that everyone knew that Jenna was hooking up with Toby. Once Alison’s body was found, Jenna felt it was safe to return home.
- Who killed Ian? Some avenging angel pushed Alison’s killer to his death. The obvious suspect is Toby, who could have followed Spencer to make sure she was safe. But it could have been anyone — even A him or herself. There were a whole lot of people with motivation to kill Ian.
- What happened to Ian’s body? When the police arrived, Ian’s body had gone missing. Did the killer move it, or was it someone else?
- Who hit Spencer’s Car? Spencer ended up alone at the church because someone hit her car, injuring her passenger Melissa (Torrey Devito), and putting Melissa’s unborn child at risk. Was it A? Did Ian see it as a chance to get rid of Spencer and his unborn child? Or was it a drunk faculty member on the way back from Bryce’s party, like Ezra’s ex-fiancee?
- Why is Ezra’s ex in Rosemont? Speaking of Jackie, is it just coincidence that she landed a teaching job at Hollis at the same time that Ezra did, or does she want him back? Will Aria calm down and let Ezra explain? Most perplexing, how on earth did two people in their early twenties who apparently never even attended graduate school end up teaching at a private college? A lot of unemployed people with doctorates would like to know their secret.
- Who is Logan? The man who showed up at the park in Ian’s place carrying a sack of money claimed he answered an ad. That seems unlikely. He’s got to be connected to at least one other person in town.
- Why do all the adult men in Rosemont like teenage girls? It started with Ezra and Aria (Lucy Hale). He at least thought she was older when they met. Spencer made out with Melissa’s former fiancee, a medical school student who had at least five years on her. Ian turned out to have a thing for teenage girls — all teenage girls. In the finale, it was revealed that Jenna is hooking up with Officer Garrett, a police officer who is a recent Rosemont High graduate, Still, he is an adult and she is legally a child. Chris Hansen needs to do a special: “To Catch a Predator: Rosemont.”
- No, really, who is A? The finale revealed that it isn’t Ian, but we still have no idea who is sending those text messages. The possible suspects include Jenna, Melissa, Mona, Noel, Lucas (maybe he’s only pretending to be a nice guy) and everyone else who has had more than two lines on the show.