vulture lists

Who Is ‘Uber A’ on Pretty Little Liars? A Mid-Season Investigation

Photo: Freeform/ABC

As Pretty Little Liars moves into the back half of its final season, the hunt continues for any reasonable answers related to “Uber A,” the mysterious and (surprisingly) violent villain who’s been the Liars’ primary antagonist since the middle of season six. While theories abound as to why this elusive technological genius is terrorizing the five ladies, the reasoning for Uber A’s torment is actually pretty simple: He (or she) wants to avenge the death of Charlotte DiLaurentis and find out who killed her. Who would possibly dedicate so much time to stalking the Liars, who don’t really have that much knowledge on Charlotte’s death anyway? And who the hell has the insanely high IQ to create such a high-tech board game filled with knives and toxic gas? With these questions firmly in mind, Vulture decided to investigate the most plausible suspects for the Uber A title. Theorize away at your own risk.

1. Lucas Gottesman
This really is the most simple and streamlined outcome. Think about it: Lucas came into his vast wealth as a video-game developer, which makes him a natural candidate for creating the Liars’ technological board game with ease. (As well as the seemingly endless funds needed to run the operation.) Hanna is staying in his loft, which makes it easy for him to spy on her and the ladies with bugs, and his past unrequited romantic feelings for Hanna would explain why she has now been picked twice to play the game, as well as when she was tortured alone at the secluded barn. Honestly, his initial interest in Hanna after the time jump, when they were (totally amicably) separated for five years without contact while in college, just doesn’t make sense. He gave her his loft on the spot without wanting a little bit of rent? And he invested in a nearby factory so she could produce her fashion line? You know what that nearby abandoned factory would actually be good for? An Uber A lair.

Perhaps most importantly, Hanna asked Lucas to be her alibi for the evening Charlotte was killed. We know from “Power Play” that Lucas and Charlotte — when she was still a young boy and referred to as Charles — were buddies in their youth. (Thanks for the intel, Pastor Ted!) If they were very good friends and remained very good friends through her transition, maybe Lucas believes one of the Liars killed Charlotte, tried to cover it up, and now wants to avenge his friend’s death. Hanna gave him the kindling he needed to put his psychopathic plan in action, and the rest is history.

2. Paige McCullers
Paige is already one of the most loathed characters in Pretty Little Liars history, so it wouldn’t come as a total shock if she were unmasked as being an evil character this entire time. (Honestly, it would make us respect her a little bit.) The take-it-as-you-will evidence: The unseen villain holding Jenna hostage earlier this season appears to have her exact same hairstyle, her title of Athletic Department Supervisor mirrors “A.D” (a.k.a. the other name for Uber A), and, um, IMDb revealed her to be Uber A last month. Whoops? As someone who has been in love with Emily and has expressed her hatred to Alison throughout her entire life, it’s completely plausible that she seeks revenge against the Liars for all of the heartache Emily caused with her complex relationship with Alison, and she’s using Charlotte’s death as a clever scapegoat. She loves Emily, but Emily can never fully give her the love she wants. Hence, torture. Besides, who would willingly come back to Rosewood to teach at the high school?

3. Mona Vanderwaal
Our girl Mona has the very special distinction of two things working in her favor. For one, she’s a conniving genius and fan-favorite character who’s been frequently associated with being “A,” even after she was actually revealed to be A at the end of the second season. But most importantly, fans love her character so much that in the event she wound up being Uber A, it’s clear that the reveal would still be a fulfilling, totally believable, and exciting end to the series. (As Janel Parrish explained last year: “Mona is only on her own side.”) Did Mona actually have a relationship with Charlotte in the past that could justify her torment? Not really. But would we love it if she revealed she was torturing the Liars once again just for the kicks … or for another bizarre reason? Absolutely.

4. Jason DiLaurentis
As Charlotte’s cousin, Jason has one the strongest motives for stalking the Liars: He wants to avenge the death of his family member, who, if you’ll recall, he was actually dating for about a year without knowing her actual identity. (When they were dating, she was referred to as CeCe Drake.) When she broke up with him, he didn’t take it too well, so it’s entirely plausible that Jason still harbors romantic feelings and wanted to figure out who murdered Charlotte as a final act of love toward her. He has the funds from the Carissimi Group to support his deranged board game activities, and he hasn’t been seen around Rosewood in a while, which adds fuel to the fire.

5. Caleb Rivers
This can feasibly work when you think of the two key traits Uber A needs to operate: big brains and big money. Caleb has both. Ever since we were introduced to this character, he has shown a keen intellect for anything involving electronics or hacking. That puts him on the forefront of being able to build that crazy tech-savvy board game, while his abandoned (and not-so-coincidentally ambiguous) rich parents could’ve provided him with enough funds for him to operate it. (Yes, he was mildly poisoned from gas that the game exuded when he tampered with it. But that would be a pretty easy way to get suspicion off your back, no?) Caleb could be operating under the guise of avenging Charlotte’s death when he really wants to torment the Liars — particularly his lovers Hanna and Spencer — for wreaking havoc in his life during the time jump. It would be the ultimate betrayal, but boy, it would be a damn good ending.

6. Pastor Ted
Is Pastor Ted a psychopathic adult? Probably not, no. It’d honestly be surprising if an adult wound up being Uber A, but we did posit a theory last year that outlined how Charlotte’s biological father would have the strong motive and means to terrorize a group of teens. Since Pastor Ted decisively announced that he’s Charlotte’s father — Mary Drake is her mother — he’s gotta be on the list of suspects. It’s not unreasonable, especially if you also like to think another one of the Rosewood dads could’ve fathered Charlotte instead. (We’re looking at you, noted man-whore Peter Hastings.)

7. Melissa Hastings
Melissa has been relatively quiet in the newest batch of episodes, but with all of the screwed-up connections between the Hastings and DiLaurentis clans, this would make some sense while expanding on that crazy family tree. Maybe she’s actually Spencer’s twin and not her older sister? That’d make her a half-sister to Charlotte, perhaps giving her a motive for seeking revenge? (Fans are loving that twin theory recently.) Just a thought.

8. Wren Kingston
Tale as old as time, song as old as rhyme, Wren is probably not Uber A. As much as people looooove to think this delightfully smarmy Brit is orchestrating this latest revenge-filled plot against the Liars — trust us, we love all things Wren related — there’s really no way a guy can be pulling the strings of an operation at this scale while living in England. (If you’re thinking, “Maybe he’s secretly been in America the whole time!” remember that he’s been gone since season four. Wouldn’t it be a bit unfulfilling for him to pop up now as the Big Bad? Yes. Yes it would.) The only reason Wren is on the suspects’ list is because he clearly has the intelligence and the monetary means to support an operation like this if he wanted to, and he’s returning in tonight’s episode. Let the mischief begin.

Who Is ‘Uber A’ on Pretty Little Liars?