Over seven seasons, Pretty little Liars brought drama and mystery to the small town of Rosewood. When Aria, Spencer, Emily and Hanna start receiving messages from the mysterious “A”, a year after their best friend Alison disappeared, their lives change forever. But who is “A?” What does “A” want? Over the course of seven seasons, three main villains hold the identity of “A” and each takes a different approach to the game. But, there were other issues at work throughout the show, such as the factual circumstances behind what happened the night Alison disappeared and who was involved.
So, which seasons have been more critical than others? In the middle of season six, Pretty little Liars made a massive change by jumping five years into the future after the big “A” reveal. But did the time jump add anything to the show? Or, would the series have done better to end with the end of high school? Each season added something significant to the overall story, but which seasons were the most significant reveals, twists, and story arcs for the show as a whole?
seven Season 7
Season seven is a race to the finish as the Liars and “AD” prepare for the endgame. However, the stakes continue to rise when no one can properly hand over Charlotte’s killer. However, when it comes to the show’s overall significance, season seven can’t help but feel slightly disconnected. When Charlotte revealed herself as “A”, it was accompanied by the unveiling of her identity as Charles DiLaurentis; ties to Radley Sanitarium, how she met Mona and, perhaps most importantly, its relevance to the night Alison disappeared. The final season still has ties to the rest of the show, mostly focusing on Mary Drake and the reveal that she’s the biological mother of Charlotte, Spencer, and Alex. Otherwise, due to the performance occurring five years in the future, the adult confronts the Liars fearing “AD”‘s wrath and is more like being stuck in a time loop.
6 Season 3
The third season is tasked with introducing a whole new “A” to Rosewood. But, other than the start of the season proving that “A”‘s nightmare continues, season three is mostly home to various subplots that don’t have much of a bearing on the future. Pretty little Liars creates Malcolm as a plot device to bring another obstacle to Aria and Ezra’s relationship. Ezra trying to father a son he didn’t know he had doesn’t mean much in the long run. Toby being a member of “A-Team” is explained as he was trying to protect Spencer, even though Spencer never shows up as “A’s” protege.
The most influential aspect of the plot is Spencer’s breaking point, which gets her admitted to Radley Sanitarium and briefly joins the “A-Team” only to find that Toby is still alive. However, their roles within the “A-Team” are quickly terminated thereafter. The importance of Maya St. Germain is teased to be much more critical than she is. The storyline that follows Emily’s encounter with Maya’s killer has no bearing on the series’ central mysteries or dangers. The only significant major storylines are the significant clues that Alison is alive and the extensive examination of Radley Sanitarium which would become more essential in the future.
5 Season 4
The Liars are closing in on “A.” At least they think they are. Arguably, the back half of season four is wasted potential for a menacing and thrilling revelation that “A” was Ezra Fitz all along. The revelation that the Ravenswood lair belonged to him seemed like an inevitable setup that Ezra had taken the game from Mona. However, that was not the case. The exciting and horrifying buildup and potential is swept away when Ezra reveals he had written an actual mystery book about Alison’s disappearance. But fortunately, the whole season is not a disappointment. Alison finally reunites with her friends, revealing to them that she is alive and needs their help if she returns home. “A Is for Answers” finally shows Alison’s side of the story about what happened the night she disappeared and how it all fell apart after she received her first “A” text.
4 Season 5
Season five is mostly about the response to Alison’s return home and what it means for the Liars when Alison begins her return to Rosewood with a false story. Throughout the season, it’s a subplot that Alison harms her relationships with the other girls by continuing to tell stories without letting them know what she’s up to. But it’s the ending that truly shows the importance of the season more than anything else. Alison and Hanna’s arrests eventually pave the way for Spencer, Aria and Emily joining them. Then, separating the four Liars from Alison, “A” kidnaps them, bringing the group to the Dollhouse, where they reunite with Mona. In the dollhouse, Spencer realizes that “A”‘s name is Charles, which brings them closer to finding out who “A” really is.
3 Season 6
Even though the second half of the season is set five years in the future and feels slightly disconnected from the rest of the series as audiences catch up to the new dynamics at play, it’s the first half of the season that makes it so important. . The mid-season finale reveals that Cece Drake was also Charles DiLaurentis, also known as Charlotte DiLaurentis, and had spent most of her life growing up at Radley Sanitarium. Charlotte’s confession finally reveals what happened to Toby’s mother, who hit Alison in the head with a rock, and why Jessica agreed to bury her daughter alive. He also reveals that Mona was responsible for hitting Bethany with a shovel and why she went out that night. Finally, the second half of season six introduces the new threat as “AD”, with a mystery that begins when Charlotte is killed.
2 Season 2
The second season is the first time anyone learns that Alison was also targeted by “A”. The revelation gives Emily, Hanna, Aria, and Spencer clues as to what to look for, hoping it will lead them to find out who “A” is. Fortunately, “A”‘s identity is revealed in season two. Choose not to let the mystery last too long, Pretty little Liars finally reveals that Mona Vanderwaal was “A.” She had hated Alison because of the way Alison had bullied her, then her rage grew again when she believed Aria, Emily, and Spencer were going to steal Hanna from her. The second season continues to shed light on the complicated relationships the people of Rosewood have and all the secrets they’re willing to keep.
1 Season 1
The first seasons of Pretty little Liars are very strongly connected. Whether through their connection to the four central girls or Alison, it seems almost everyone Alison saw on the night of her disappearance was introduced in the first season. Almost every critical or mystery character from the early seasons of Pretty little Liars comes from its first season. When Hanna, Spencer, Emily and Aria each receive their first message from “A”, it changes their lives forever. Nothing will ever be the same as Season 1 unfolds to uncover what really happened to Alison and why, while revealing many hidden family secrets.