Dare I say it, because the cool, trendy thing to do is to hate on PLL. But season 7A is my favourite season to date.
I’ve spent the past few days rewatching 7A, and I hit a level of appreciation that I think I slightly missed the first time around. The story progressed dramatically from episode 1 to episode 10, and yes, there are answers in every episode as promised. I don’t think Marlene meant ‘answers’ in the sense of “who killed Garret! - episode 1″ and “why Ian committed suicide! - episode 2″ and “Jessica’s I can’t protect you email! - episode 3″ and “who is Charlotte’s father! - episode 4″. That’s not what she meant. Loose ends like those will only make sense with the endgame reveal in the series finale. By answers in every episode throughout 7A, she means actually dropping CLUES to the endgame, that will all culminate later. Killing Sara, revealing Elliot’s true identity to be Archer, Charlotte and Archer had a romantic history, Noel was in the dollhouse, Spencer is a Drake, the doctor dealt with “two of Mary’s babies”, Mary had another child, the wording of AD’s threats are clues in themselves, Jessica is the evil twin and Mary was the victim of her cruelty, Grunwald bleeding when Noel is near, Grunwald saying the source of the threat is very close, Jessica never stopped searching for Ali… the list goes on. I could break it up per episode if I really wanted to. We get blinded by the fact that these answers raise more questions, so we feel like we got no answers. But we actually did get answers. Every single episode of 7A reveals something new towards the endgame, which will all culminate in the series finale. The answers we get are indeed brief, and they raise more questions, but each episode gives us something new to think about until the series finale. And the romance is interesting too. I love these characters. I’ve known them for almost 7 years now. So seeing that Spencer is able to love again after her breakup with Toby made me happy. Watching Hanna be in a difficult position giving Spencer her permission to be with Caleb, and watching Aria delete Nicole’s call to save her marriage… the content is incomparable to Aria dating her martial arts teacher, or Spencer flirting with a random dude in London.
I also hear from too many people that the writing is exponentially worse in recent seasons. I couldn’t disagree more. Many people are searching for answers and answers only (regarding the mystery), and so they mentally ‘switch off’ when they feel the scene won’t give them any. I appreciate every word said and the meaning behind the words. For example, in 708, Emily asked Paige how long it’s been since they last spoke. Emily says 2 years, and Paige says it’s actually been 3 years. “Here we go, why do we care about that?” Well, don’t take it literally: the point of that line is not to give us a number as to how many years. The point of that line is to show us that Emily has moved on from Paige - time is flying without her, hence she recalls only 2 years, meanwhile Paige feels the distance more as she misses Emily dearly, and she’s counting the days that go by without Emily, and so she recalls an extra year (3 years). As we can see, it took me a paragraph just to explain one line. I won’t explain the other 10 examples I had, some even in the mystery aspect of the show, not the romance. (This appreciation for the lines is coming from a person who doesn’t even watch PLL for the romance; I’m here for the mystery.) I’m okay to admit the writing is just fine.
Is the show perfect? Hell no. Answering questions in interviews and not in the show is a big no-no. I won’t let that bother me. Yes it sucks, especially for those who don’t go snooping the web for these interviews. But I do. I see the answers. I’m happy. I move on with my life. Plot holes?? Nope. Charlotte lied about her story in 610 for very specific reasons, and they’ll be fixed soon. Yes, some storylines are dropped faster than they’re written (#Who’sInTheBarrel). This tells me they mustn’t be important, so I’ll move on with my life. Also, if the story has been dropped out of nowhere, the writers must feel they’ve appropriately concluded that story. So I’ll dig and find the answer myself. And I successfully do find the answers myself. Heck, I’m keeping a record of them here!
Long time followers of my blog know that season 4 is my all-time favourite season. (Well, now, used to be.) Actually, everyone always says the earlier seasons of PLL are the best. I think we enjoyed the earlier seasons more because the story was new and fresh, and not so convoluted. Now 7 years in, we know these characters backwards, there’s a list of more than 150 questions, the ‘high school drama’ and ‘queen bee goes missing’ and ‘16 year old girls’ stigmas have faded and the story is more complex than ever. I say those as good things. Of course, 7 years in, it won’t be as ‘fresh’ as it once was. I don’t believe ‘fresh’ equates to ‘better’, because the ‘better’ stories are being told now in season 7.
Sorry for the long post, but I was just re-watcing 7A and I was frustrated that a season of this quality is being hated so much. I genuinely loved the re-watch experience, asking myself “do I have time for one more!?” … even though I know what’s coming up next.
I’m so convinced that Ali being A makes the most sense that I’m genuinely scared the writers won’t go down that route. So much over the last 7 seasons points to Alison, not to forget all the special Halloween, christmas and, Black & White episodes paint her in a negative light. It even goes back to THE FIRST TEXT after the funeral which makes sense only if she is the puppet master: “I’m still here bitches and I know everything.”
I need to lower my expectations before april 18th. It’s like I think I’ll be satisfied and also part me thinks I won’t be. You feel me?