In an hour jam-packed with juicy tidbits about our beloved Rosewood residents, we learned what essentially everyone has been up to in the five years since Charlotte (aka CeCe) was shockingly revealed to have been the notorious "A."
During the sit-down, secrets and spoilers were revealed by showrunner I. Marlene King, producer Oliver Goldstick, stars Lucy Hale (Aria), Troian Bellisario (Spencer), Ashley Benson (Hanna), Shay Mitchell (Emily), Sasha Pieterse (Alison), Ian Harding (Ezra), Keegan Allen (Toby) and Tyler Blackburn (Caleb).
We learned Aria had ended things with Ezra for good — at least, for good for now — and headed to Savannah College of Art & Design in Georgia, as planned. She then transferred to Boston to pursue writing instead of photography, started dating a coworker and began seeing Ezra in a professional capacity.
We learned Spencer and Toby split after the long-distance commute between Rosewood, where he stayed, and Georgetown proved too much for their relationship. Spencer then threw herself into academics, becoming a lobbyist on Capitol Hill before moving home to help her mom try to win a seat on the Senate.
We learned that Hanna and Caleb, although they did sojourn to NYC together initially, broke up (tears!) when her work in the fashion industry took off and led to extensive travel. In fact, she met a man in Europe on one of her trips and they are now engaged.
But the most intrigue proved to be in what was revealed — or rather not — about two other fan favorites: Emily and Ezra.
When King introduces Emily's backstory for the last five years, she and Mitchell delve into how Emily couldn't wait to get away from Rosewood. She decided to honor her original dream, which was to move to California. There, she starts attending Pepperdine in Malibu.
Tragically, her father dies (more tears!), and "it was too much for her," Mitchell explained of her character dropping out of school. At that point, Emily decides to stay on the west coast and gets a gig bartending. Thanks to a previously unseen clip, we also discover she has at least visited Paige and might even be dating her old flame again.
However, King points out that while the other Liars are creating secrets upon their return, Emily is keeping a secret and "has the most baggage." Furthermore, King adds, "She is the most damaged after five years without A."
So, hold that thought for a minute while we hop over to Ezra.
According to Harding, "Ezra had an eventful five years." And not in a good way, he's quick to point out. Remember Nicole, Emily's friend who helped build houses with her in Haiti? Remember how she and Ian kind of hit it off in 6A? Well, they continued their budding relationship. He followed her to South America and found what Harding describes as Ezra's "calling."
But — and this is a big one — "that is taken away from him quickly and violently" and "he is back, completely rudderless." He apparently searches for meaning in the bottom of a bottle and winds up in a much darker frame of mind than we are used to seeing from everyone's favorite English-teacher-turned-author.
His descent is so stark, as a matter of fact, that King says, outside of the Liars, "he has the most baggage." She also laments, "He is broken."
Yikes! What is going on here? Does Nicole get killed while doing charity work in South America with Ezra? Since she is Emily's friend, too, that may explain some of the emotional "baggage" Emily is bringing into 6B, too.
While most of the other central characters seem to have gotten stronger over the last five years — even Charlotte — Emily and Ezra are both apparently lost and perhaps even more damaged than they were before the jump.
Because they are more fragile than the others, it might make them an easier target for the new "big bad" we'll soon meet on the series. In other words, get ready to feel all the anxiety, friends. It looks like we'll be spending a considerable amount of time in 6B worrying about the fate of both Em and Ezra.
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