As far as shocking TV goes, “Pretty Little Liars” is at the top of the game. The producers and actors on the show seemed very aware of this when they arrived at the TCA winter press tour on Thursday (Jan. 10). What did they say? What upcoming twists might top the big reveal about Toby?
Find out here.
Toby on the A team
The biggest (recent) shock on “Pretty Little Liars” was the reveal that Toby (Keegan Allen) was actually a member of the A team. Producers I. Marlene King and Oliver Goldstick were ready and eager to discuss this development with reporters.
They pointed out that maybe audiences should not have been quite so surprised that Toby was a bad guy — he was, after all, originally a very dark character. As Oliver Goldstick explained, “His darkness isn’t coming out of nowhere. It’s actually a reminder of where we started.”
The problem (and the excellence) was in how Keegan Allen managed to create a character that charmed both the girls and the audience. Thus, when Toby went bad, audience reactions were extreme.
Some of those reactions were particularly impressive. Marlene King talked about “a call from a mother who asked to speak to the head of television.” Apparently, this poor woman was dealing with eight 16-year-old girls who were still crying about the reveal at the end of a “Pretty Little Liars” slumber party. Meanwhile, star Shay Mitchell watched the reaction unfold on YouTube. She described her viewing of the many “fan reaction” videos as follows: “Oh my God! This is so good. Next!”
What is coming next in the story? The producers promise some major storylines dealing with the Spencer-Toby relationship, including some big twists and turns. “It’s mind-blowing,” King promised.
The longevity of the series
How long can a show like “Pretty Little Liars” keep up the suspense and the twists? The answer is a whole lot longer, if the cast and producers have anything to say about it. Oliver Golstick even joked that the young ladies would eventually be “the Golden Girls Liars.”
While the show might now last quite that long, there is still plenty of story, and they’re not in a hurry to get to the end. There are, after all, 12 books in the “Pretty Little Liars” series. Also, season 3 only takes the girls to the end of their senior year.
The storylines aren’t done yet either. The characters and the audience still don’t know who is, ultimately, A, nor do they know who killed Alison. That may not be the same person. No one on the show is ready to end that mystery, planning instead to bring up and solve smaller mysteries throughout.
As for the characters themselves, the producers don’t expect to run out of stories for them any time soon, explaining that they “have the advantage of four different protagonists.”
What’s coming up?
Rest assured, the people in charge of “Pretty Little Liars” know what they’re doing: “I don’t think we could be successful doing what we’re doing if we don’t know the final answer,” Marlene King explained.
For this season, no one would give away too much about what specifically is coming up. King did say that there would be a couple of homage episodes: a “Misery”-themed story is coming in episode 3 and the season finale will take “North by Northwest” as an inspiration.
“Pretty Little Liars” airs at 8pm Tuesdays on ABC Family.