Pretty Little Liars Season 4 Episode 1 Recap: What Was in the Trunk?

ByEmily Duke

It returns. The time has come. All 14-year-old girls, 19-year-old sexually confused boys, and post-college, stimulation deprived 24 year-olds rejoice. 

Pretty Little Liars. Season 4. Lezgo.

As most episodes begin, we start with "previously on … " But this isn't any "previously on." This is the kind of "previously on" that makes your heart skip seven beats, your flight or or fight mode dial up to 17,000 and your "oh snap, I forgot that happened" meter go to 20. As you might recall, Aria is #Soover Fitz, some non-Caleb masked man/lady/'A' tried to feel up Hanna on a train o' death, a house was lit on fire, Toby was thereafter knocked out and The Liars were left screaming at some discovery found in the trunk of what was formerly Detective Wilden's cop car. 

Surprisingly, this episode actually began where it left off and showed us what was in the trunk (heretofore known as "The Trunk of Doom"). Unsurprisingly, the contents of The Trunk of Doom were a huge disappointment giving us pretty much no information and completely making us feel like The Liars were being a wee bit melodramatic with their gif-able reaction faces (unless they're now kosher). For those of you that missed it (SPOILER ALERT!), it was a dead pig. This could mean one of three things: 1) The pig is a metaphor for the police circa 1995 and the entire Rosewood police department has been destroyed. 2) Pigskin, aka Paige, aka the worst, is gonna die. 3) The pig is A (probably not, only because A is immortal).

Everyone takes a second to internalize the contents of the trunk and tries to leave (even Emily, who notoriously has no understanding of what is appropriate post-being-framed or pre-being-murdered etiquette). But Wait! Mona's missing from the newfound crew (obviously). But then four seconds later, Hanna finds her burning the MamaMarin running over Wilden video onto some kind of a drive while she screams that she's "SAVING YOUR MOM." Cool, Mona. I bet. I bet you're saving her so hard. 

Some couple shows up and everybody's all like "LET'S GO." Then we get The Liars somewhere a little more private and Mona starts spewing some "truths" that are probably lies but are probably truths and everybody is really pissy about it (but not Hanna but also maybe Hanna). She confirms that the resident obvious psycho and underdeveloped character Shana is in love with Jenna and no one really seems to care because that chick was sketchy and we kind of knew it (high fives all around). Plus, everybody's probably going to die and at this point everyone watching this show has already crapped their pants with fear at some point so an A love affair really could be worse.

Then everyone wakes up and Mona's gone (OBVIOUSLY) and the liars discuss the possibility that they were drugged (again). This honestly seems to be old hat at this points so I'll just move on. Mona returns with creepy stalker coffee and #itsashbenzo does some pretty decent acting when she insists that Mona communicate her lie-laced devil words "in English."

We then cut to The Liars doing a quick drive-by of the Trunk of Doom, as all casual 17 year-old girls do when they're obviously being framed for the murder of a potentially pedophiliac and definitely mother-banging officer of the law. A sheet blows off something on the ground and it's none other than Detective Wilden himself. #escapeplanfoiled


Mona then has to prove herself by showing the liars her lair. No way it's a trap because nothing bad has ever happened in a lair. She goes over a bunch of things that would have been MIND-BLOWING two seasons ago and eventually notes that Melissa is on the A team (again, two seasons late Mona Bear). 

Mona's computer then gets wiped (in the nick of time) by a remote server. Because, like, why not?

Then there are creepy children with dolls being creepy and terrifying and honestly, it's probably too stressful to relive. But that shit cray.

And FINALLY we cut to Hanna on the phone. Nothing better than a beautiful shot of Hefty Hanna just being sassy and having telephonic conversations. She's making plans with Mona and Emily's pretty pissed about it. But Emily's made it pretty clear over the last three seasons that's she's too attractive to be have been blessed with common sense. 


Emily's mom then shows up and is #sosad about Detective Wilden. She casually reminds The Liars of the witnesses (AS IF WE DIDNT KNOW, MOM) and drops a bomb about Mrs. DeLaurentis being in town. So, I guess Mrs. Delaurentis is A.

Toby and Spencer then sort through the remains of the fire and are #notalone.

Emily takes this opportunity to swing by the DeLaurentis house, because it's a warm and fuzzy place, and finds out that Mrs. D is forming what Emily proceeds to call "A Shrine to Ali." As a note, she tells this to Hanna on the phone while Hanna heads to "A Creepy Farm in the Middle of Nowhere," and it's clear that the writers were onto Emily too often being the idiot putting herself in idiot life-endangering situations.

We then have a classic Aria and Fitz scene in which she doesn't want to say hi because she's in high school and they broke up and he SUPER does because he's a pedophile and probably A. They have the post break up conversation you had in 9th grade and get interrupted by a mass of boys in letterman jackets. Oh, and he mentioned he "has a family now" which is just like, hilarious.

Spencer and Toby then have the classic post breakup post get back together convo one does with their ex that may or may not being trying to kill you while you eat your eggs. As per usual, it ends with them being really cute and quippy about the amount of coffee Spencer drinks. Adorable. Oh, until Toby gets a threatening text about who I believe is his mother but at this point, it's probably his sister-wife who has a DEEP AND DARK SECRET. #spinoff

Cut to Aria getting called into the vice principal's office. And we're all like "OH SHIT" and chug whatever's left of our bottle of wine and get prepared for fireworks. The VP (heretofore known as Al Gore) shows her the anonymous pictures and CHILD PORNOGRAPHY he has of Aria and Fitz. She bursts into tears and watches as Fitz gets pulled away in handcuffs. WHAT. THE. WHAT. THE. OMG. SEASON 4. EPISODE 1. AL GORE IS A. DOWN IN THE BOOKS. DOWN IN HISTORY.

Oh, but then it's a daydream. I guess ABC Fam doesn't have the legal team to back this story up. 

Then there's some weird plot line with Pigskin talking about going to Stanford? Evidently she's got a FULL RIDE and like DUH so can Emily because like:

Spencer then stares at an incredibly creepy Mrs. DeLaurentis, (who is, A, btw), and gets a text on her iPad because she's so fancy and gets all of her A texts on an iPad now. The text explains that there are secrets in Wilden's coffin. I read that on Gawker months ago. Catch up, Liars.

We then get what we've all been missing, classic liars in semi-celebratory black dresses being framed for murder but coming to the funeral because like, WHY NOT? Spencer get scientific so we're all reminded that Troian Bellisario can pronounce big words and then she breaks into the coffin room where Mona is, protecting herself because like SHE'S SCARED TOO GUYS #REDCOAT. A phone rings from inside the house (coffin) and Spencer takes this opportunity to call back "Kisses" which turns out to be Hanna who is all like "why are you calling from my Mom's phone" and everyone watching again peed their pants.

The funeral then begins and a creepy veil covered chick is in a pew in the back. Side note, Mona didn't get a seat with The Liars, probably because she's evil but maybe because she was super lame in 10th grade. As another note, Jenna is there with some faux-Jason who also is maybe the A of the future. 

Toby is then driving the Lair/RV somewhere to protect his mother and we get to see a flashback of Ali threatening to make out with him. Suffice it to say, this six-packed piece is damaged.

Then some #newwilden shows up and creepily knows all the girls' names. We're meant to be terrified but they've all now been implicated in multiple murders and it would be a little weird if the police didn't know their names.

The Liars then receive a threatening text with a video of them near The Trunk of Doom and we're all like "OH SNAP" but we're also all like, "DUH". 

It all ends with a Mona doll joining The Liar dolls but I'll believe it when I see it, Mona/ABCFamily/A. Til next time.