TV Review: ‘Pretty Little Liars’ 6×14 “New Guys, New Lies”

pretty little liars

Welcome back to my weekly review and recap of Pretty Little Liars. To catch up on previous coverage, click here.

Much like last week, the stakes still aren’t high enough for the Pretty Little Liars. “New Guys, New Lies” showed more interesting stories for the parents rather than the four main characters while also showcasing some pretty intriguing reveals.

The morning after her wild night with Caleb (Tyler Blackburn), Spencer (Troian Bellisario) receives frantic text messages from her friends about the mysterious text they received the previous night from a new anonymous stalker. When the girls get together to discuss this new looming threat, they receive messages stating they know this person and that Charlotte’s killer used a nine-iron golf club to commit the act.

Let’s give Emily a cheap storyline!

Nervous about Ezra possibly being the killer, Aria (Lucy Hale) tries to get into his apartment to see if he’s missing a golf club. While Ezra is out of town doing the broody depressive thing, Sabrina (Lulu Brud) is reluctant to hand over the key to his place. Aria asks Emily (Shay Mitchell) for help in being a cheap plot device…eh…distracting Sabrina while she steals the key.

Emily and Sabrina end up having a worthwhile conversation until Aria interrupts them to fill Emily in on what she found at Ezra’s. While she discovered that his golf club was still in its rightful place, she found something more shocking on his voicemail. Aria’s dad, Byron (Chad Lowe), wants to talk to Ezra about what his daughter’s ex-boyfriend “thinks” he saw.

However, one of the biggest shockers was how Aria forgot to return Ezra’s key to its rightful place. Did she learn anything about lying and sneaking around through high school? Also, Sabrina finds out Emily was trying to distract her and gets hurt since she was starting to enjoy Emily’s company. Of course, Emily ended up enjoying their time too and this naturally means the two of them will hook up at some point. While last week’s episode dealt with Emily’s revelations, this installment was purely a vehicle to hook these two characters up and it seems like a contrived way of giving Emily a storyline.

Spoby isn’t officially over (Shocker!)

While Spencer’s relationship with Caleb is blossoming, it looks like Toby (Keegan Allen) has moved on with someone new. Yvonne Phillips (Kara Royster), the girl Spencer correctly predicted Toby was making a house for, is the daughter of Veronica’s senatorial competition. However, this does not create tension between Toby’s current girlfriend and ex-girlfriend. Instead, the candidates’ daughters get together for a campaign encouraging young people to vote.

Toby’s bromance with Caleb gets affected negatively when Caleb mentions his relationship with Spencer. While Toby acts like it’s OK, his body language and facial expressions say otherwise. His constant run-ins with Spencer may have also stopped him from proposing to Yvonne.

Meanwhile, Spencer tells Caleb about the text the girls received. However, she deletes one message where the stalker was taunting her with the thought that Toby will never propose to her. Caleb ends up figuring this out though when he starts doing research to figure out where the texts came from. Spencer tells him she simply wanted things to be simple and didn’t want any trouble. Caleb happily understands.

When Spencer and Caleb reach the source of the text messages, they find a garage door. When they open it up, they find a single trash can inside with all of A’s things thrown in. Soon, A’s old phone lights up and receives a text, “I don’t lurk in the shadows. I hide in plain sight.”

Hanna’s too-perfect life

Much like Emily, Hanna (Ashley Benson) finds very little to do in this episode. Since her fiancé, Jordan (David Coussins), keeps her grounded and she has never lied to him, she feels guilty about not telling him the truth. She confesses to him and her mother, Ashley (Laura Leighton) about deleting the Radley security footage. Her mother starts stressing out because the hotel’s security company keeps back-up footage and if the cops get a hold of that, then Hanna is screwed.

Meanwhile, Jordan says he still loves Hanna but he says she has to be honest from now on. He calls his dad to see if he has any connections to lawyers in Rosewood. However, the connections didn’t have to do much for Hanna since the security company ended up losing the back-up files as well. We learn later that Ashley stole the footage to protect her daughter.

While Ashley protecting her daughter could be an interesting story on its own, Hanna’s main story is getting a little boring. Jordan is basically perfect for her and it makes you wonder how long this ideal life will keep going.

pretty little liars

Papa Montgomery’s secret

While Aria is investigating her father, Emily is chilling in the Montgomery family living room. But she is not alone. Through a living room window, we see a creepy mailman keeping an eye on her.

Aria calls Byron and says she needs to talk about something important. He says he’s in a meeting and doesn’t have time right now. We flash to Byron’s point of view and we see him tell an unseen character, “I think she knows.”

Aria remembers an old memory from when she eavesdropped on a conversation between her mother, Ella (Holly Marie Combs) and Byron. Apparently, Ella visited Charlotte at the hospital to get an understanding of why she did such horrible things to her daughter. Ella seems slightly sympathetic to Charlotte and informs Byron she could get out of the institution soon. Byron, completely against the idea, says Charlotte will walk the streets of Rosewood over his dead body. So far, this makes him look like a viable suspect especially considering he does not have a nine-iron golf club in his possession!

Later on, the girls figure out that the carpet in the background of the photo their stalker sent them is the same carpet on the Radley’s floors, meaning this person is somewhere in the hotel. After Hanna does some digging, we learn Ezra and Byron are not in the hotel and Sara Harvey has had a “do not disturb” sign on her door.

At the end of the episode, Aria receives a return phone call from Byron and he says he wants to tell her something. This once again proves the parents have more interesting storylines than the main characters. Is I. Marlene King sure that Pretty Little Mamas or Pretty Little Papas can’t happen soon?

Creepy Stalker Epilogue

The creepy man who spied on Emily earlier in the episode is now a doorman at the Radley. We see him get into a limo as he takes off his glasses, hat and…mask!

Closing Thoughts

Once again, the stakes still don’t seem extreme enough for our liars. While the Byron storyline is doing a good job at keeping us guessing, we still can’t help but think it’s a red herring. After six seasons, we have come to expect nothing less from Pretty Little Liars.

Rating: 7/10

Do you think Pretty Little Liars is making the stakes too low for its main characters? Sound off in the comments below!

Jeremy is an aspiring entertainment reporter from New Jersey. He has collected countless issues of Entertainment Weekly and TV Guide since he was a child and loves reading the behind-the-scenes scoop of his favorite TV shows. His proudest moment was when he had laryngitis while interviewing B.o.B and was told by the “Airplanes” singer himself that he had “a great interview voice.” Jeremy spends his spare time obsessing about fictional characters, watching Disney movies (he’s not ashamed to admit he was 23 years old when he saw “Frozen” in theaters with absolutely no kids by his side) and plowing through endless hours of soap operas on his DVR. He is still trying to replace the void he has in his heart from when “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” was canceled in 2003.