“Pretty Little Liars: Who’s In the Box?” Leaves Viewers Disappointed

Emily and Hanna meet friends of a girl who went missing around the same time as Alison.

Emily and Hanna meet friends of a girl who went missing around the same time as Alison.

Karalyn Kickham

Emily and Hanna meet friends of a girl who went missing around the same time as Alison.
Emily and Hanna meet friends of a girl who went missing around the same time as Alison.

Following months of anticipation and questions about the truth behind A, the winter premiere of “Pretty Little Liars” was a disappointment.  The premiere, “Who’s In the Box?,” which aired on January 7, left viewers aggravated and confused, as they had more questions than before the episode aired.

The episode begins with Aria, Spencer, Emily, and Hanna discussing where Alison has been all this time.  The girls are determined to figure out who Ali is so afraid of and to fix things so that Alison can come back and tell the Liars what has been going on.  Hanna proposes a theory that if Alison’s isn’t in her crypt, then the body in there must look like Ali and the girl must’ve gone missing around the same time as Alison.  If the girls can find out who is in the box, they can connect them to someone they know in Rosewood and potentially figure out who A is.

After the accusation of murdering Wilden, Mrs. Marin has been struggling to find employment, and after Ali appears in one of her mother’s dreams, Mrs. DiLaurentis offers Mrs. Marin a job in a real estate office.

Ezra holds Aria after class and apologizes for putting her in a bad position with the whole Malcolm situation.  He tells her he wants to try again after Aria graduates.  While Aria is in Ezra’s classroom, Hanna tells Spencer and Emily that she did some research online and found a girl named Sara from nearby Cortland, who looks similar to Alison and went missing around the same time.  Hanna sent an email to Sara’s friends saying they should meet up and talk because they went through similar situations.  A video starts playing on a projection screen with the message “Ali, Ali, Oxen-free, Whoever finds her, gets to keep her. Kisses -A.”  The race to find Alison is on.

Toby and Spencer successfully get Radley Sanitorium to admit that Toby’s mother’s death was not a suicide, and Mr. Hastings pushes them to try and shut down Radley.  Caleb returns from Ravenswood to see Hanna, and he describes everything that has happened since he’s been gone as “complicated.”  Hanna and Caleb’s reunion is short-lived, however, as Caleb has to return to Ravenswood to take care of some promises he made.

Emily and Hanna meet with some of Sara’s friends, and learn that Sara was just like Alison—the center of attention and powerful.  The dates of disappearance do not match up, so Hanna’s theory is a bust for now.  Ezra brings Aria to a cabin in the woods so they can talk.  Ezra tells Aria he regrets the mistakes he has made, and they kiss.  Ezra spends most of the time at the cabin staring creepily at Aria.

Claire, one of Sara’s friends, visits Emily after hours at work.  Claire feels guilty because she thinks Sara was a horrible person and she wished Sara were dead shortly before she disappeared.  Claire says she is jealous of Emily because Emily knows Alison is dead, so Emily can move on with her life.  Little does Claire know…

Back at Ali’s crypt, Hanna tells the rest of the Liars that she took Alison’s diary from A’s lair, and there are bad things written about them inside.  The closing scene shows a hooded figure opening a latch in the floor of Ezra’s cabin.

Although a lot happened in this winter premiere, not much of it held much significance to viewers.  The episode was boring and repeated scenes and situations similar to those in earlier episodes.  For instance, Aria goes to a creepy cabin with a creepy man.  It is probably not possible to keep track of all the times the girls have gone into the woods without the other girls and regretted that decision.  Also, based on prior experiences the girls have had, the race to find Alison is probably a set-up that will only harm the girls.  The next episode of “Pretty Little Liars” airs Tuesday, January 14 at 8 pm on ABC family, and hopefully brings excitement and answers.