Photo Credit: ABC Family
*Contains spoilers if you haven’t watched the 1/21 episode.
“Close Encounters,” the January 21st episode of Pretty Little Liars,” begins with the girls heading the Busy Bee Inn in Spencer’s car. They are hoping to find Ali, but only find a trashed room with a broken window. There is blouse that looks like something Ali would wear, so perhaps, she’s been there. There is a note from A scrawled onto the door, which says, “You’re too late.” Cue the horror music.
In the next scene, Emily is dropping off a pie her mother made for the church bake sale. Emily is talking on her phone to Hanna when someone comes into the church.
Meanwhile, a half-dressed Spencer opens the door at Toby’s loft to find her dad standing there. Hilariously awkward. Her dad looks shocked because he thought Spencer was staying with Hanna. Spencer tells her dad she is not coming home until someone explains to her mom what is going on. Mr. Hastings says that Jason is off the wagon, which is why Mrs. D is hiding her divorce from him. Mr. Hastings further explains that he is not lying to his wife, he is just not sharing everything with her. Right. Omitting information is the same thing as lying. Just then Toby comes into the room wearing just a towel and Mr. Hastings tells him to put some pants on. So funny.
Aria is hanging out in the crack den, also known as Ezra’s apartment. He says he has to meet a friend in Philly, which means he is off to do evil. Aria gets a text from Jake and tries to hide it from Ezra, but Ezra’s shifty eyes see it. Aria tells Ezra that she chooses him and I yell at the screen for Aria to stop being so stupid (among other not so nice things that I won’t share here).
Spencer and Hanna are hanging out in Hanna’s room while Hanna cleans out her closet and prepares to give half of her clothes away. She tells Spencer that since Caleb is moving on, she is moving on too. Ashley comes in to see what Hanna is doing and when Hanna tells her, Ashley and Spencer exchange concerned glances.
Back in the church, Emily is lighting candles when she hears a noise behind her. It’s Shana, who says she has a message from Alison. Ali wants to girls to stop looking for her because they put her in danger. Shana says she lived next door to Ali’s grandparents and has known Ali since they were three years old. Shana says she is only friends with Jenna to keep an eye on her. Interesting, but I don’t know if any of this is true.
Radley is offering Toby and his family a settlement. Toby’s dad wants him to sign. Toby wants to sign it also, but Spencer is pushing him to look into it further.
Aria goes to see Jake and you can see the break-up coming. Jake says he missed her and Aria is awkward. He asks Aria if she wants to get something to eat. She says yes, then no. Jake guesses that Aria is back with Ezra based on how she has been acting. She says she enjoyed spending time with him and he says she liked spending time with Ezra more. Jake says he needs time before he can be friends with Aria. She’s going to need him when she finds out Ezra is a pyscho.
The girls are together when Emily tells them about Shana. No one trusts Shana. They figure out that Paige is on Ali’s lists of suspects and Spencer thinks Shana is just one of A’s minions. They don’t believe Shana’s story, but Emily says Ali could make someone love her enough to do that.
Travis comes over Hanna’s house and there is a pool table in the front room that Hanna’s dad left behind. Travis wanted to check on her and Hanna invites him to play a game or two. She flirts with him, while he tries to give her tips on playing pool.
Emily meets with Shana and Shana tells her what Ali said outside the barn. Shana has known Ali is alive since Mona went to Radley, which was a very long time ago. Anyway, Ali wants to meet Emily alone, tonight.
Emily updates Spencer, as to what Shana said. Spencer wants to use more clues from the journal, which she was smart enough to photograph. Spencer wants to know why Ali would only want to see Emily and doesn’t want Emily to go. Emily gets angry because she thinks Ali really wants to see her.
At home, Aria receives a gift from Jake with a note that says, “Thought this would look beautiful on you.” Apparently Jake was thinking about Aria while he was away, while she was busy hooking up with Ezra. Anyway, the gift is a pendant with her name on it.
At the Hastings’ home, Spencer’s dad has someone setting up a fancy dinner for Veronica. Spencer is suspicious of how he backed down from Radley. He tells Spencer to worry about herself and dismisses her concerns.
Mr. Creepy, now Mr. Crazy is yelling at someone saying, “You have really screwed up. This isn’t over.” He hits the car as a blonde woman drives away. Jake witnesses this.
At Hanna’s house she continues to mack on Travis and kisses him when he tries to leave. He says she is just getting out of a relationship and they need more time. Hanna responds by kissing him again. Ashley walks in on Hanna and Travis kissing. The look on her face is priceless. Ashley asks if Hanna kisses all of her friends like that and Hanna says not to judge her. The awkward situations on this episode are too funny. After Travis leaves, Ashley tells Hanna she shouldn’t throw herself at a new guy and Hanna says it is her broken heart. So true. No one can tell her how to heal.
Spencer goes through her father’s briefcase and finds some Radley letterhead. Mrs. D is on the board. Suspicious. Her dad catches her and avoids answering her questions.
Hanna is in her dark bedroom listening to music when Ashley tells her to get ready to go out.
Blockhead Aria tries to give Jake the necklace back, but he says he doesn’t have another Aria to give it to. Jake doesn’t understand why Aria wants to be with Ezra and neither do I. He tells Aria about Ezra freaking out on the blonde lady and says he wondered if Ezra was the one Aria is afraid of. Wow, he is incredibly insightful. He tells her to keep her eyes open, but you know Aria isn’t going to listen.
Ashley has taken Hanna to smash plates to help her get past her anger. I want to go to this place after work.
Aria confronts Ezra about what Jake said and puts Jake in danger. Ezra is probably lying when he says that the woman is Maggie’s lawyer and he wants visitation rights with Malcolm. Ezra says that Jake is trying to make him look bad, but I think he is doing a fine job on his own.
Shana drops Emily off at this shady looking building, but Ali is really there. They hug and Ali says she missed Emily. Ali says she doesn’t know if she can trust Spencer or Aria. I think it is because of Ezra and Toby, or perhaps, Spenser’s shadiness. She wants Emily to help her find A. Ali hears a noise and runs to the elevator. The elevator comes back, but it is empty. Spencer appears and Emily is pissed. Spencer thought that Emily was in danger, but Emily fears that she betrayed Ali. Spencer thinks that Ali is trying to divide them and doesn’t want Ali to come between them. Emily says Spencer is doing that on her own.
Spencer returns to Toby’s loft and finds that he already signed the agreement. She wants him to probe his mother’s death more, but he tells her to stop pushing it and leaves the room. Spencer cries because this is the third time she been rejected in a matter of hours. Poor girl.
Hanna calls Caleb and tells his voicemail that her time with him was the best year of her life.
While Ezra and Aria share a dessert, Jake is working out. Holy shirtless goodness. He kicks his punching bag and cuts his foot. There are knives inside the bag. I told you Aria would put him in danger.
In the final scene, someone tears a picture of a younger Shana and Ali in half and sets Shana’s picture on fire. Shana, you in danger, girl.
Thanks to PLL for the shirtless guys tonight. I appreciate it. I will continue to watch as long as Ezra keeps his clothes on.