‘Pretty Little Liars’ Season Finale Pays Homage to ‘The Usual Suspects’

Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family)

Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family)

Tonight is the summer finale of “Pretty Little Liars.” It’s been a season of dead brother-in-laws, evil step-sisters, morally ambiguous therapists, accidental Human Growth Hormone consumption, mysterious initials, clandestine kisses and, of course, constant text messages. Last week, the Liars finally told their therapist, Dr. Sullivan, that they were being stalked by the still unidentified A.  The finale finds the girls at their most desperate, as A punishes all of them for coming forward. The show’s producers have promised that, though A will not be unmasked, plenty of questions will be answered. At a recent press junket, the show’s stars revealed five reasons why this finale is the show’s biggest and baddest yet.

A Has Diabolical Tasks for Each of the Girls

When Dr. Sullivan disappears after encountering A, the Liars must find her.  “A punishes them in a completely different way. They’re each going to have a different task that they have to complete or else something really bad is going to go down,” shares Lucy Hale (Aria). The challenges are each girl’s worst nightmare. “All of the girls are put in a position that every fiber of their being is telling them not to do what they have to do,” reveals Troian Bellasario (Spencer).  “Every cell in their bodies is screaming, ‘No” and yet these words are coming out their mouth. It’s a whole new level of control.”

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A Targets Spencer and Toby’s Relationship

The romance of Spencer and Toby (Keegan Allen) — the overachiever and the outsider — has been one of the highlights of season two. The two have turned out to be as good at solving mysteries as they are at making out. That’s why A forces Spencer to do something that will jeopardize her relationship. “There’s so much romance between them that A pegs it as her Achilles heel,” reveals Bellasario.

Caleb Returns As Hanna Prepares for Her Father’s Wedding

Rosewood’s other hot bad boy, Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) has been visiting his mother off-camera for the past few episode. He returns for the finale. “He comes back for Hanna,” reveals Blackburn. “It’s a really cool surprise for Hanna when he comes back,” says Ashley Benson (Hanna), because she’s in this whole mess because of the whole wedding thing, her dealing with her Dad and her soon to be step-sister Kate and that whole mess.” Caleb also helps Hanna complete her challenge. “He has my back,” says Benson. “I kind of filled him in on everything that’s happening. I don’t think he knows exactly what I’m supposed to do, but he’s aware of different things that happened. It’s pretty bad. It will change a lot for Hanna.”

The Secrets of N.A.T. Are Revealed

The girls have been investigating N.A.T., the mysterious club that Ian, Jason, and Officer Garrett belonged to when they were in high school. The club’s Latin name translates to, “We see all.” In the finale, the meaning of that cryptic phase becomes clear. Bellasario hints, “Let’s say the club is still in session. That’s what Spencer discovers towards the end of the finale. They are still very much in contact and very active.”

It’s An Homage to “The Usual Suspects”

The previous season finale was inspired by the classic Hitchcock film “Vertigo.” This time, the show pays tribute to “The Usual Suspects.” That film is structured around a suspect telling what may or may not be a true story involving the mysterious, evil Keyser Soze to a police officer. So who is Keyser Soze in the PLL version? A, or one of the girls? “While we were shooting it somebody told me that while they were filming the ‘Usual Suspects’ the director told every actor that they were Keyser Soze so that they would play it open ended. I think that it’s pretty much the same thing with us,” reveals Bellasario. “You have to suspect everyone. By the end of it, if we’ve played our cards right, you don’t even know if you can trust the Liars.” Remember those posters of the Liars wearing mud-spattered party dresses? That’s a part of the scenario.  “All the girls are dressed up and there’s mud involved. I can’t say what we’re doing, but it’s outside in the dirt,” teases Hale. Adds Benson, “At the very end of the episode we all come together again. We’re faced with a huge challenge.”

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