Pretty Little Liars: season 1, episode 13

Darby Festa ('13), Eastside online editor

The thirteenth episode of “Pretty Little Liars” does not disappoint. Immediately, from the opening scene, viewers are once again overcome with a feeling of suspense and excitement as Spencer spies on Melissa and Ian discussing a private matter surreptitiously in the kitchen.

Spencer scurries up to her room when Melissa hears her, and is welcomed by an e-mail from “A” about the legitimacy of her sister’s relationship with her fiancé.

The next morning, Spencer questions Ian about the Hilton Head and his honeymoon with Melissa: questions he dodges with general yet suspicious answers.

Determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, Spencer later calls the Hilton Head to inquire about Ian’s last stay at the hotel. She remembers that Ali returned from the same hotel the day of her disappearance. She discovers the shocking and suspicious news that Ian stayed there the same exact time that Ali did.

Meanwhile, Aria and her brother, Mike, visit with their father after his separation with Aria’s mother. Mike is cold to his father, still angry and unforgiving about his father’s affair that caused the separation.

Amid the chaotic mystery surrounding Ali’s death, Hanna experiences problems of her own after someone at her house party steals her family’s money, leaving them broke. Hanna suspects Noel, who the four friends have pegged as “A”. It doesn’t help to clear his suspicion when they see him talking to Mike, despite the fact that the two boys aren’t friends.

Hanna also receives a series of notes from “A” that lead her to eating a whole tray of cupcakes to get the money back. “A” tries to make Hanna binge and purge: an eating disorder that Ali introduced to her to help her lose weight. Hanna, after losing weight, overcame the disorder but the experience with the cupcakes brings back awful memories.

Emily and Maya have gone public with their relationship, much to the dismay of Emily’s mother, who does not approve. In an act of desperation, she goes through Maya’s purse and finds drugs. Not knowing what to believe, she asks Emily about the drugs and Emily’s participation in the illegal behavior. Emily gets very angry with her mother.

Noel continues to blackmail Mr. Fitz for a better grade, and when he refuses to give in to the blackmail, Noel threatens to expose him to the whole school. Mr. Fitz then plants the answers to midterms in Noel’s locker that makes Noel look as if he was cheating.

During this time, Toby, who has returned, is being constantly harassed because people believe that he is Ali’s murderer.

The girls have reason to believe his innocence: A sends them a video on the last night before Ali disappeared. It’s a huge shock when Ian is in the video and an even huger one when the girls see glimpses of some sort of struggle.