'The Perfectionists' Premiere Left Fans Asking These 5 Questions, Let's Break Them Down
This post contains spoilers for Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists. Fans reunited with two former Liars during the March 20 premiere of new spinoff series Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists, but catching up with Alison and Mona became the least of viewers' concerns. Teaching assistant Alison suspected that wealthy college student Nolan Hotchkiss was blackmailing other kids, but Nolan was found impaled on a fence before anyone fessed up about his manipulation. His mysterious murder in The Perfectionists premiere left fans asking questions, so we're here to narrow down as many of them as possible.
ICYMI, Pretty Little Liars' Alison (Sasha Pieterse) and Mona (Janel Parrish) joined forces in The Perfectionists as co-workers at the picturesque Beacon Heights University, known as the safest college campus in Oregon. After slightly unclear circumstances left her Paris life lacking, Mona began a new position as a BHU recruitment and admissions staffer and hired former mean girl Alison as a teaching assistant. As Alison's relationship with Emily (Shay Mitchell) lacked a sense of trust, she felt prepared to leave Rosewood and give Emily some space.
Both women were determined to leave their pasts behind them and start fresh at the college, but Alison soon began to feel that she was at BHU for a bigger reason. She learned that she resembled Taylor, the dead daughter of benefactors Peter and Claire Hotchkiss, and believed the similarity was more than just coincidence. Meanwhile, Taylor's brother Nolan (Chris Mason) was striking terror among his peers by blackmailing them to follow his commands. Little did they know, Nolan was working with a very alive Taylor (Hayley Erin) to determine why their mother (Kelly Rutherford) was using the school security system to spy on Nolan and the students he pressured.
When we last saw Nolan, he was telling a hidden figure that Taylor was alive and begging him or her for help. Mirroring his fake girlfriend Caitlin's (Sydney Park) vision of how she'd kill him, Nolan was then found dead while hanging from a fence. The Perfectionists' murder was promised from the beginning, but now that we know about the victim and other characters' circumstances, it's time to break down our biggest questions about the series.
1. What Happened To The Drakes In Paris?
In the Pretty Little Liars series finale, Mona had settled into a life in Paris, running a doll shop and keeping the murderous Mary (Andrea Parker) and Alex Drake (Troian Bellisario) captive in an actual dollhouse. When Mona surprised Alison at her new Beacon Heights home, she explained that her reasons for being in Paris "escaped" her. So, the Drakes are essentially on the loose, right? Does this mean they'll show up to terrorize the women at the college?
Showrunner I. Marlene King teased how fans will discover the truth about the Drakes' whereabouts, telling TVLine, "It’s not something you’re going to see right away, but as we get to breathe a little bit more and slow down the story, I’d love to see that be its own standalone episode.”
2. Will Anyone Else Learn That Taylor Is Alive?
Everyone on campus seemingly believed that a stressed Taylor Hotchkiss killed herself a year before Alison arrived at BHU and that Nolan didn't even shed a tear at her funeral. But it turns out that the bullying Nolan had at least some semblance of a heart, as he was willingly hiding his sister and working with her to take down their mom. Having trusted his mysterious killer, Nolan told the figure that Taylor was alive, meaning that at least one other person knows the secret.
Actress Hayley Erin spilled what she could about Taylor to TVLine. "Someone eventually figures it out and finds her and tries to convince her that she can reintegrate,” she said. “Even when you think you know Taylor’s secrets, there are secrets beneath those secrets. That’s what makes her really dangerous. You don’t know if you can trust her."
3. What Was With Mona Talking To Mirrors?
Throughout the first episode, Mona made quiet remarks to her reflection in mirrors. After authorities discovered Nolan's lifeless body, Mona rushed into a bathroom, faced herself in the mirror, and wondered aloud if his death was her fault. The camera then delved into the mirror, revealing security footage and a team of people that appeared to work for Hotchkiss Technologies. This could be the headquarters for the school's renowned security system, Beacon Guard, and earlier in the episode, a voice resembling Mona's responded to Claire's request to bump up surveillance on Nolan.
In interviews, King stayed mum about whether this reveal featured an actual place, but told TVLine that Beacon Guard has similar qualities to Pretty Little Liars' all-seeing "A." "I feel like you can’t have ‘Pretty Little Liars’ in your title without having some sort of Big Bad that has this all-knowing presence," she said. "There’s an element of Beacon Guard that’s tied to the Big Bad of this show, which is all I’ll say for now."
4. Are The Other Kids Still In Danger Of Being Blackmailed?
Cellist Dylan (Eli Brown) felt obligated to do Nolan's homework in order to hide their previous hookup, while aspiring fashion designer Ava (Sofia Carson) was forced to keep her relationship with Nolan behind closed doors. Politically inclined Caitlin posed as his girlfriend publicly to prevent Nolan from tarnishing her mother's presidential campaign. With Nolan now dead, are their secrets still in danger of spilling out? King promised that fans will find out in future episodes if the information is widespread.
5. Will We See More Liars On The Show?
Seeing as Mona and Alison don't even appear in Sara Shepard's Perfectionists book series, Pretty Little Liars fans have already been spoiled by the characters' spinoff roles. But with the Drakes seemingly roaming the world and Emily back in Rosewood with the twins, are we in store for more cameos from the Pretty Little Liars gang?
Speaking to TV Guide, King stressed the importance of establishing the new show's world before bringing back more familiar characters. While she did express hopes for PLL characters to stop by, don't expect the reunions to happen anytime soon. "For these first 10 episodes, it was most important for me to get [The Perfectionists] up on its feet as its own thing," she said. "You'll see as we start to drop Easter eggs in these first 10 episodes, the ways that we can maybe bridge a few worlds."
Season 1 of Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists continues on Wednesday, March 27, at 8 p.m. ET on Freeform.