Pretty Little Liars came to an end last night, and concluded with all its mysteries solved (sorta) and all its main characters happy, for the most part.
In case you missed it, last night's finale revealed that Spencer (Troian Bellisario) had a secret identical British twin named Alex who had taken up the mantle of A.D. to avenge her sister Charlotte's death.
After a life of being abandoned by her adoptive parents and running away from the orphanage, Alex had planned to steal Spencer's identity from her completely, but thanks to Toby knowing the difference between Spencer and not Spencer (this time), she lost, and ended up in France in a dollhouse built by Mona (Janel Parrish).
Meanwhile, everyone else got married or had babies or was going to do one or both of those things (unless they're Spencer, who probably had a lot to deal with mentally), and they all seemed pretty happy about it. It was a lovely ending, but obviously we still had some lingering questions when we hopped on the phone with showrunner I. Marlene King.
E! News: I had always liked the Spencer having a twin theory, but was definitely not expecting the British accent or her actual personality. Can you talk a little bit about how you developed the character?
King: Well I knew all along how I wanted Wren to be tied into the mythology of Charlotte and A.D., and Wren's british, and we knew about the twin theory and that we were going to make her the twin, and then I really worked with Troian on the character and how that character was going to be so different from Spencer. I would say that's sort of the genesis of the creation of having her be British, but not upper class like Wren. She's much less polished, Alex Drake.
Was that an accent that Troian already had?
No, she started working on that a year ago. She's been really working hard on that. She was amazing, by the way. We were all just blown away by her every day.
I was impressed that going back and looking at the scenes where it was Alex, you could tell. It was Spencer, but it wasn't.
She was so nuanced, Troian. I bow down to her. Big kudos.
I was also impressed by just how many things you managed to fit into this one finale. Recapping it was hard!
It's the last one. We had to go big or go home, I'd say.
Anything that didn't make it in?
No, I think having that two hours was really helpful, really helpful. There's nothing that we wanted to see that we didn't get to tell, storywise.
Anyone you wanted to come back that you couldn't get?
Well we really wanted Jason [Drew Van Acker] to come back, but he was busy on Training Day. And we really wanted Aria's brother Mike [Cody Christian] at the wedding, but he was busy on Teen Wolf. Those were the two characters we really hoped could come back, but they didn't get to visit us.
I was going to ask about Mike. Where did we leave him?
We literally had a line of dialogue in there that said something about how Mike had just made a toast, but I was like, take that out, that's too cutesy. Sometimes when you lose characters, you lose them. I think there was a line where they said Mike was away at some school or something like that last season, and we just went with that.
What was Alex trying to do by impregnating Ali with Emily's eggs and Wren's sperm? What kind of revenge was she trying to get?
I think she's twisted, you know, and just took advantage of every possible scenario to torture the girls, but she was also fascinated. She loved Wren, you know, and so I think she was fascinated by this idea of Wren making a baby.
It's funny to me that it was such a cute, sweet ending, thanks to A.D. being twisted and evil.
You know, that's something we always talked about on this show. That's sort of what the show is all about. It's about the unconditional friendship of these girls, and every A tried to split them up. Every A tried to tear them apart, but ultimately it ended up bringing them back together, and so I think that this decision that Alex made to impregnate Ali with Wren and Emily's babies really ultimately brought Emison back together.
Can you elaborate a little bit on the timeline? When did Wren meet Alex, and when were they hanging out with Charlotte?
Well it would probably be between season 5A and 5B would be when they met and when they started spending time together, and when that flashback took place where [Charlotte] tells Alex that she can't stay away, that she's got to go back and play the game.
How long did she know about everyone in Rosewood?
Not that long. I feel like it's a couple of months before Charlotte died.
Why did you feel it was important to sort of restart the story with the high school girls at the end?
We introduced that character of Addison last year, and we just really liked her. We had so much fun with her, and just sort of bringing back this mean girl mentality to the school, with our PLLs as adults now. And then, you know, paying it off in the end was just something we always knew we were going to do. Even though this chapter of the PLLs comes to a conclusion, that the mythology of this creepy dark town of Rosewood will continue, whether it's on screen or off screen, it's just sort of the lure of the town.
Do you kind of envision it going the same way as it did the first time around?
I think that Addison's definitely headed down the same path that Ali was.
Do you think that it would be different with how much technology has changed over the years?
I don't know. That's a good question! I hadn't really put that much thought into it, to be honest with you. I think that what's similar are just the pieces, the people in play, that you had a mean girl bully who had her posse of friends who allowed her to manipulate them.
I really loved Mona's ending, and how she almost bookended that finale.
Yes, me too. She won.
That was her dream at the beginning, right?
That was real. That was Wren who came to see her, before Wren got turned into a necklace.
But the part before that was a dream, with the girls sitting at the table and Lucas tap dancing?
Oh yes, that was her dream. I love that scene. That was such a great scene. Yes, that was in her head.
PLL has always been one of the most tweeted about shows on TV (the finale was literally the most tweeted about show of the year so far), so what kind of an impact would you say social media and the easy access to fans has had on the show?
I think it's really helped us. I feel like we know our fans so well and they know us, and they feel like they're a part of our family because they are a part of our family. So I feel like it's helped us create this great worldwide community on social media that we all feel special because we're a part of.
Pretty Little Liars aired on Freeform.