vulture compendium

The 100 Craziest Moments in Pretty Little Liars History

Photo: Eric McCandless/Disney Enterprises

You may not be able to tell from the vaguely 20-something look of all the actors or the unclear passage of time in Rosewood, but tonight is the 100th episode of Pretty Little Liars! I couldn’t believe it either, but time flies when your best friend disappears, is theoretically murdered, and then turns out to be alive. Almost everything that’s ever happened on PLL is insane — this list, like a school year at Rosewood High, could go on indefinitely — but as your resident Power Ranker, I conducted a thorough review of all the bananas events in the entire series. I am honored to present you with what may or may not constitute my life’s work so far: The Pretty Little Power Ranking of the 100 Craziest Moments in PLL history.

1. Ali was alive this entire time.
2. The Liars, led by Ali, BLINDED JENNA. It was an accident, but “The Jenna Thing” is still so horrifying.
3.  A hit Hanna with a car. Crazy plus points for the fact that, in that particular moment, A was Mona. Mona hit Hanna with a car.
4. That time Jenna was going to convince her parents that Toby — her brother — was sexually assaulting her just so she could … use that threat as blackmail … so Toby would have sex with her. Some heavy Flowers in the Attic/Cruel Intentions stuff right there.
5. Rosewood weather patterns. Are there seasons in Rosewood? No idea, greatest mystery of this show.
6. Everything about Radley, the obviously would-be-condemned-in-the-real-Main-Line insane asylum.
7. Ashley — our beloved Ashley, who would be pure as the driven snow were it not for the vicious curveballs this heartless thing called life keeps throwing her way — got Hanna out of trouble with the law by having sex with Detective Wilden.
8. Caleb was living in the walls (?) of the school, like some sort of Aladdin-type street rat with a heart of gold and the hair of a Riggins with a flatiron.
9.  A car drove into Emily’s house! A has such a car fetish.
10. A Rosewood High education.
11. A’s lair. Seriously, it looked like this.
12. When A released that snake into Spencer’s dressing room. It’s cool, Cece killed it with the leg of a mannequin.
13. When the show cast Bianca Lawson, a 34-year-old woman who has been playing high school students since 1997, as 16-year-old Maya. Although I guess if all the other girls get to have age-inappropriate hookups, it’s only fair for Emily to do the same.
14. That the entire time Ali was on the lam, she somehow had a curling iron and full makeup stashed away with her and the time/space to do her hair.
15. Hanna made out with Magic Mike Montgomery in an amazing flashback.
16. The “Mona is A” reveal that involved her kidnapping Spencer, driving her out to the middle of nowhere, and then giving Spencer this ultimatum: Join the A team or disappear.
17.  Mona brought Ali to the A lair (which she set up before Ali’s disappearance!) and convinced her to run away from Rosewood.
18. The “Toby is on the A team” reveal.
19. When Emily was hypnotized into believing she’d killed Ali with a shovel. Typical.
20. Spencer took off her bra just to get back on the Decathlon team. Still rooting for her and Andrew to make an honest go at being a Rosewood power couple.
21. Emily killed Nate, Maya’s fake-cousin who, as it turns out, is Maya’s murderer.
22. Ian’s body vanished from the clock tower; somehow showed up again in the middle of the following season.
23. Someone(s) was secretly videotaping all these underage girls. For a very, very, very long time.
24. Mona fell off a cliff.
25. Jessica DiLaurentis was buried in the Hastings backyard.
26. Ian stored incriminating videos of the underage girls he secretly taped on his computer in a non-password-protected folder with file names like JENNA_TOBY.
27. A snuck into the dentist’s office, drugged Hanna, and then performed malicious dental surgery on her while Hanna was unconscious. Oh, yeah, and then A LEFT A MESSAGE IN HANNA’S TEETH.
28. Ezra believed Ali was a college student when Ali was a 13-year-old girl.
29. No one ever calling the police.
30. Spencer kissed her sister’s fiancée. It’s easy to forget this now that we love Spencer so, but honestly: Dick move, girl.
31. Aria’s outfits, including but not limited to what I once described as “a horizontal-striped sweater and vertical-striped pants, like the human version of a TV test pattern.”
32. How Ali used to apparently do this thing, on command, where she made herself not breathe so she would black out. Just a nifty little trick to get her parents to give into her demands.
33. When Meredith, a.k.a. Jodie Sawyer from Center Stage, returned to Aria’s life after being her dad’s student/mistress and then poisoned Aria.
34. Ali literally drugged all of her friends just to smoke out a cyberstalker.
35. The idea that Ali would know to use “Vivian Darkbloom,” an anagram for Vladimir Nabokov, as her alias, but wouldn’t understand a reference to Breakfast at Tiffany’s and continues to need Aria to explain the significance of Cat the cat.
36. The discovery that the inside of the belt on Spencer’s bridal-show dress had FINGER BONES in it.
37. The idea that Ali somehow saw everyone she claims to have seen and talked to everyone who supposedly talked to her the night that she went missing.
39. Aria and Ali trashed Aria’s dad’s office so he would think Meredith was a “crazy, vindictive, home-wrecking bunny-boiler” (Ali’s words, not mine, I promise).
40. Jessica DiLaurentis and Mr. Hastings having an affair that resulted in a love-child, who is Jason, whom Ali somehow knows the truth about, and yet continuing to live next door to each other like nothing really happened.
41. This mask.
42. Ashley Marin somehow having a run-in on Halloween with those twin girls who may or may not have been ghosts?
43.  A sent Emily a necklace made of teeth. Teeth from her dead girlfriend. Like you do.
44. When Ali accidentally wore the dress to her mother’s funeral that her mother had worn to her funeral.
45. Aria got locked inside a coffinlike box. With Garrett’s corpse.
46. Officer Holbrook not spelling it Holbrooke.
47. Shana not spelling it Shauna.
48. Aria’s cry-face.
49. Ezra slept with Aria to “be a good reporter” who would “do anything for a story,” revealing such a nonexistent understanding of what good reporting entails that I decided he must have graduated from the Zoe Barnes University of Sleeping With Your Sources without ever reading a real newspaper.
50. Ian attacked Spencer in the clock tower.
51. Hanna jumped in the shower with Caleb.
52. Creepy McCreeperson’s Mask-Making Emporium.
53. Ravenswood, LOL.
54. Paige tried to drown Emily in the pool after swim practice, yet somehow these two emerge to be the most functional couple in Rosewood. (Low bar, TBH.)
55. Spencer went through “withdrawal” after maybe three weeks of popping the occasional Adderall.
56. This dress Aria wore to the masked ball.
57. That anytime anyone tells one of the Liars that they have to go someplace “alone” because “it’s the only way you’ll be safe” or “otherwise I won’t give you the information you want” or what have you, the Liars continue to follow those ridiculous instructions and actually roll up to dangerous situations alone, usually without telling a single person the truth about where they will be or what they will be doing.
58. When Spencer lost her spot to Mona on the Academic Decathlon team, so she tricked Wren into driving her to the Decathlon just so she could dive across a table and choke Mona.
59. All these teenage girls regularly dating or hooking up with guys in their 20s.
60. Everyone wearing a bra or a tank top during sex because ABC Family.
61. How people in Rosewood bring dates to funerals.
62. Ashley Marin went to prison.
63. When A sent the Liars a collapsible mini-coffin, plus a bunch of doll-doppelgängers.
64. Anytime actual parenting happened.
65. Hanna’s pants choices, such as: “shiny, fuchsia spandex pants for her little jaunt to, as she calls it, ‘some creepy farm in the middle of nowhere’”; yet another pair of shiny metallic pants. This time, they’re silver and look like the leftovers from a ‘sexy astronaut’ Halloween costume.”
66. Ezra’s suggestion to his high-school English class: “You can read East of Eden over the weekend for extra credit!” East of Eden is 601 pages long.
67. When Ian, Jason, and Garrett were in the self-proclaimed “N.A.T. Club.” This stands for nos animadverto totus, Latin for “we see all.” Because, sure, these guys knew Latin, with their amazing Rosewood High education to guide them in their studies of this long-dead language. Latin is the only thing in Rosewood you can be 100 percent sure is dead for real.
68. The dead eyes of “I’m stuck in Radley” Spencer.
69. Every time these girls sign text messages with their names, as if anyone would ever do that, especially when Aria is texting HER TEACHER, who is her secret boyfriend.
70. Hanna’s parents took away her cell phone and her internet privileges, but somehow that was fine because Hanna, a teen from the past, had a landline phone in her bedroom.
71. Wilden’s porn stash was a stack of DVDs that he kept on his bedside table. Somehow this gent never discovered, you know, the internet.
72. Tippy the bird, singing that phone number.
73. The Liars’ batshit Halloween costumes.
74. Completely inappropriate funeral attire.
75. When Mona destroyed that letter from Caleb so Hanna never saw it, thus derailing one of the only semi-functional relationships on this show.
76. Spencer’s Queen Elizabeth Halloween costume from this flashback.
77. The indeterminate age of Martial Arts Jake.
78. After everything this show put us through, Ezra wasn’t even the father of Maggie’s baby, Malcolm. We will never forgive. We will never forget.
79. The way that Ali talks. Has she ever said anything even remotely teenaged?
80. The hoedown dance which, for some never-explained reason, needed to take place far from Rosewood High.
81. ABC Family promoted hashtags, especially #MovesLikeAria, because no.
82. “The Halloween Mystery Train”: I mean, really.
83. Hanna’s brief but wonderful love affair with the written word. “The mystery dude we should be focusing on is Patterson … This guy just GETS the criminal mind.” 
84. When all these teenagers knew how to use a pay phone.
85. “Cover for me” as an acceptable way for a student at Rosewood to get out of class.
86. Pepe was “adopted” by Jessica DiLaurentis, and so the animal-rescue people left the dog with a teenager when the person whose name was on all the forms and presumably passed the background checks was just … missing.
87. Hanna’s grandma singing the National Anthem.
88. Cece Drake somehow broke out of prison and somehow landed a wig/sunglasses combo on impossibly short notice.
89. A locked Spencer in the funhouse of doom.
90. When the Liars broke into the hospital morgue, dressed like candy stripers, because of course.
91. That time Hanna went to a lesbian bar and got hit on by, like, everyone.
92. Mona using those creepy dolls at Radley to communicate in some made-up language with the Liars.
93. Aria’s mom got engaged to that coffee-shop dude who’s, like, younger than everyone Aria has ever dated. Then she moved with him to Austria, abandoning her two underage children in a basically empty house.
94. Those “we’re popular now” outfits from the Hanna and Mona slo-mo walking flashback.
95. Everything about Ezra’s book deal.
96. During that bridal fashion show, Spencer’s veil got caught in a GIANT BEAR TRAP that was in the woods for some reason. Said it before, allow me to repeat: Everything is terrifying, stay inside every day always.
97. Riley, the manic-pixie rebound boy Aria hooked up with at Syracuse.
98. That one time coherent plot progression came to Rosewood.
99.  Ali’s terrible cover-story for what happened when she went missing.
100. Pepe the dog dug around in Spencer’s backyard and turned up with a hand because OH WAIT Pepe found Jessica DiLaurentis’s dead body.

The 100 Craziest Pretty Little Liars Moments