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17 November 2010 @ 07:53 am
'Cause two can keep a secret, if one of them is dead.  

This is a pimping post for my newest obsession, Pretty Little Liars. I just finished marathoning the first half of the first season all the way through and I've got to say, I'm addicted. This is going to be a post explaining why people should also be watching this show too, and Part 2 of season one returns on January 3rd of 2011 so what better chance of getting caught up? There are no spoilers here, just a generic description in getting people at least somewhat interested.

Mystery and Drama

Pretty Little Liars is teen drama-mystery based on the young adult book series by Sara Shepard that airs on ABC Family. It centers around four girls who, a year after their best friend and Queen B of the clique, Alison, mysteriously disappeared, was found dead and are brought together by someone sending them messages from an anonymous source called "A" that is stalking them/threatening to reveal their deepest most darkest secrets that they thought only their deceased friend knew. These four friends stick together in trying to understand who "A" is while trying to survive whatever drama is surrounding their little secrets. This also includes certain unmentionable scandals that they witnessed/were part of/are happening in their daily lives, and some personal secrets that they aren't sure they are ready to admit or confront just yet.

Drama also happens with character relationships, whether it be family and friends or romances, and there are quite a few romances involved which can be a messy web in itself, but it doesn't really get ridiculously overbearing in that department. Mostly the drama and mystery mix really good together to make it interesting to watch.

The Cast and Characters

In shows character interaction and development is pretty much key, there has to be chemistry and growth otherwise it's not really worth watching if we keep going around in circles with the same-old dramatics. With Pretty Little Liars, they did a great job with introducing us to our four main characters without going down the road of shallow teen drama-ville like other shows have done. Instead, they've given us four wonderful actresses portraying these characters, all of them adding a different kind of flavor to their role and all giving us a chance to really look into what is going on in their lives and seeing the interactions with each other, and see how they once were through flashbacks to how they are in present day and how they deal with what is happening. There's also life-changing incidents that make each character learn and grow, and sometimes with surprising results. Not that saying they don't do stupid things now and then, but nothing is black and white and these girls realize it through the mystery they're in the middle of.

There's also the supporting cast as well, introducing secondary characters and recurring which also play a huge factor to the show, all which are portrayed with equal importance as our main characters are. There are even surprise actors popping up that I didn't even know that they were also appearing on the show (Holly Marie Combs from Charmed plays one of the main girl's mother; also Bryce Johnson from Popular as the detective running the investigation, Bianca Lawson as Maya, Ryan Merriman also makes an appearance as well as the author of the Pretty Little Liars books makes a brief cameo in one of the episodes).

The Opening Sequence

The opening title sequence is singularly one of my favorites because it has that creepy-yet-beautiful vibe to it, combined with the imagery. It's short but gorgeous. The song is called "Secret" by The Pierces.

The Handling of Sexuality

Granted not many shows tend to handle sexuality well, and sometimes it's not done in ways everyone can agree on which is understandable. However in my opinion, Pretty Little Liars does deal with the subject of sexuality in more or less a respectful manner.

One of the characters is dealing with her own sexuality on the show and it's a confusing time for her. She even admits out loud that she thinks there's something wrong with her. I think there's a natural and realistic portrayal here of teenagers trying to understand their own sexuality, and it is a really confusing and complicated time for them because there's the heteronormality society has placed on us, and in that fictional small town of theirs there's even more pressure from the parents who often are stereotypical in their "wants" and "expectations" of their children to be accepted by their community. One of the important themes specifically in some episodes is with being honest with oneself, being true in finding out who they are and this girl really is trying to figure that out. One of the things I liked about this is later on one of the other friends finds out (through a message from "A") but accepts it with open arms and tells her friend exactly that, and I think that's a lovely thing to witness.

It's not entirely perfect, but I think the accepting of bisexuality without it being for the "shock factor" but more about this is who that person is regardless, is a big step up.

Why Should You Watch Pretty Little Liars?

Mystery and intrigue disguised as a teen drama, but it's not your typical teen drama kind of show. It's a mixture of being Veronica Mars and Twin Peaks with the murder mystery of their best friend, complete with flashbacks and unraveling the secrets and mysteries of solving this puzzle, and also adding some Gossip Girl drama with the anonymous "A" who keeps sending them messages and stalking their everyday lives and the other sorts of drama that happens with their family/friends and the relationships they have. There are certain things that are slightly expected from this kind of a show, like romances and triangles and things that can seem cliche, however the mystery makes up for it and there are definitely some twists and turns you wouldn't expect.

If anything, this show is entertaining and will keep you guessing and wanting to piece the clues together. If this is the kind of show you're interested in, even mildly, then I highly suggest you check it out. It's definitely worth it.

Now I'm off to start watching The Vampire Diaries, because everyone is recommending it and I hear it's awesome.
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: The Pierces - Secret
Encyclopædia Clevernamethefreshchuff on November 17th, 2010 05:59 pm (UTC)
I love, love, LOVE this show. I can't wait until it comes back, it's something my mom and I can watch together and then gossip about afterwards. XD

I'm excited to hear what you think of The Vampire Diaries! I've never really watched it, and I definitely trust your taste.
Renée: Dollhouse. Victor/Sierra.rogueslayer452 on November 17th, 2010 06:12 pm (UTC)
I just love how I've fallen in love with this show immediately. After the pilot I just couldn't stop, it's infectious, and I'm not complaining. I haven't read the books, but now all I'm thinking is, "who the hell is A?" THE SUSPENSE, IT KILLS ME!

Who is your favorite character?

Aww, thank you. I appreciate the compliment. ♥ I'll definitely let you know what I think.

Edited at 2010-11-17 06:12 pm (UTC)
Encyclopædia Clevernamethefreshchuff on November 17th, 2010 06:15 pm (UTC)
I can't decide if I want to read the books to find out, or wait for it to be revealed on the show, so the surprise isn't ruined!

Aria or Hannah. Hannah for her humor, and Aria for her clothing, lol. And I just love the idea behind her and Ezra -- like what if you met someone you could see yourself really loving and being with, only to find out there is a basic but giant wall that has to keep you apart ... by law.
Renéerogueslayer452 on November 17th, 2010 06:20 pm (UTC)
I know! It's such a difficult dilemma, but I think I'll wait until the show reveals it first. I find it interesting to watch and be all shocked at the twists they pull. ;)

For me, while I like all the girls for different reasons, my personal favorite is Hanna. I really have enjoyed her character growth in these first ten episodes. She's adorable and I like that she can say things without having a filter at times, which is what you said her sense of humor, but I also liked that towards the end there she's been taking some responsibility. I liked that she stood up for Lucas, and how cute are they together? I just love her. ♥ Scared about what happened at that last episode though, omg! D:
inkstaind_dream: s & e kissinkstaind_dream on November 17th, 2010 06:30 pm (UTC)
One of my best friends is obsessed with this show. I remember watching one or two episodes with her, and at the end of the final she was screaming at the television. When she found out how long she would have to wait until the show returned, I'm pretty sure she was tempted to take a hammer to her t.v. Lol, even though I haven't really had an opportunity to get into the show, from what I've seen I thought it was interesting.

Who knows, if I can catch it at the beginning, I may give it a chance. And you're right, the opening sequence is perfect with the song and imagery they use.
Renée: Nikita. BAMF.rogueslayer452 on November 17th, 2010 07:29 pm (UTC)
Now I guess I'm gonna have to wait with everyone else until it returns too. :) I'm just glad I got a chance to see all 10 episodes all the way through as I did, because they're so addicting, and I'll be able to watch it in real time come January!

You should definitely give it another shot from the beginning. You'll be hooked certainly by the mystery of it, the same as I was. <3
she who hangs out in librariesvelvet_midnight on November 17th, 2010 06:50 pm (UTC)
I'm just here for The Pierces. Didn't know anyone else knew them and I love that song. :)
Renée: Kahlan. Smile.rogueslayer452 on November 17th, 2010 07:03 pm (UTC)
I've just gotten addicted to it because it is the theme for this show, so. ;)
srs bsns: castiel bring itibroketuesday on November 17th, 2010 10:30 pm (UTC)
The Vampire Diaries is excellent. I used to dismiss it as schlock, but then a friend got me hooked.
bitterbird on November 17th, 2010 10:45 pm (UTC)
I already watch this, it is amazing and awesome show. I started watched it coz I heart Lucy Hale :D

my advice with The Vampire Dairies is to stick with it, it gets so much awesome and very worth it
Renéerogueslayer452 on November 18th, 2010 03:28 pm (UTC)
You're like the second person who admitted to getting into the show because of Lucy Hale, which I find funny, but appropriate because I think she's a great actress. :) I really love all the main girls for different reasons. My favorite though is definitely Hanna. ♥

I'm on the fourth episode now, I'm intrigued. :)
Becky: GG: Leighton is a hottie!beckytheelf on November 18th, 2010 01:31 am (UTC)
Hmmm, maybe I ought to give it a try. I've never really been interested in shows like this though but hey if I'm bored this Christmas...
ALSO GIIIIRL GIT ON THE VAMPIRE DIARIES TRAIN. This was the show that I'm talking about that is so freaking epic. I mean seriously, those writers *know* what they're doing. Since you're on the first season, the episodes are a little slow at first but they hit the ground running by about episode three or four and yes there are lots of twists and turns etc. but I like that the writers deliver. They don't drag a plot point out and they don't rehash the same tired beaten horse storylines (I'm looking at you Supernatural and the Sam vs. Dean saga OF THREE FUCKING SEASONS). Also speed your way through S1 girl, epic shit goes down in Season 2. EPIC.
Also, I actually like the Vampire Diaries because of the great female characters. I like all of them except for one (Bonnie) and even she's growing on me! I don't want to give too much away but the lead, Elena, she's not whiny and a Mary-Sue as people make her out to be.
Renée: Inara/Kaylee. <3rogueslayer452 on November 18th, 2010 03:26 pm (UTC)
It's really a good show, I was caught completely by surprise with how much I've been enjoying the story. It's a mixture of a teen drama but with more mystery and character interactions that aren't entirely that shallow like some other shows are. It's very interesting, definitely check it out sometime when you get the chance to.

ALREADY ON EPISODE FOUR RIGHT NOW! So far I'm liking what I'm seeing, it's definitely a little slow but that's what I expected it from what everyone is saying, and by that I can't wait until I get further into the season. I really like Elena, and all the characters so far are very interesting in their own ways. I'm just starting out so I'm gonna get more details soon, but yeah. Those are my thoughts so far. I'll let you know after I watched more.

I've heard people saying that the female characters on TVD are awesome, which is a huge thing with me (obviously). So, yay! :D
Courtwordsleadmeon on November 18th, 2010 07:25 am (UTC)
I totally already watch, and half started 'cause of Lucy Hale. I think I might have to link to this post in my journal if that's cool with you?

Also, re: TVD... stick with it. It gets all sorts of amazing when we get near the mid point of the season and they start really hitting their stride and for the most part it just keeps getting better. Mad respect for the writers. I love it.
Renée: BSG. Six. Made of awesome.rogueslayer452 on November 18th, 2010 11:04 am (UTC)
That's absolutely cool with me! Go right ahead, link away! :D The more people to get hooked on this show the better, I say. It really is a good show, caught me by surprise to say the least.

I keep hearing that, and it makes me incredibly optimistic because for a show to start off kind of "meh" and hit it off intrigues me. Most times it's the other way around and it makes me excited to hear how amazing it is and how everyone is getting into it.
Tinka: Castiel 6x03gwaevalarin on November 18th, 2010 07:48 am (UTC)
Damn you, girl. I'm still in the middle of catching up with Caprica - which I really enjoy so far, by the way. So stop recommending shows to me because you always make it sound like I should really give them a try.
Renée: Caprica. Zoe Graystone.rogueslayer452 on November 18th, 2010 10:52 am (UTC)
Hehe, I'm quite an enabler aren't I? ;p You totally should check it out when you get the chance to, because it's a nice show from what I've seen so far. It's only ten episodes and it returns on January 3rd so, you'll have plenty of time to catch up before then.

I'm tempted to watch the last five episodes of Caprica that have only been airing in Canada, but I kinda want to wait. It's a good show, isn't it?
Tinka: Crowleygwaevalarin on November 19th, 2010 10:01 am (UTC)
Caprica is a good show. I think I watched the first half-season in about two or three days because I just wanted to know what happens next.

I guess I'll take a look at Pretty Little Liars next then.
Renée: SPN. Crowley > Everyone.rogueslayer452 on November 19th, 2010 11:52 am (UTC)
I'm just so pissed at how Syfy treated it, because from what I've been hearing about the rest of 1.5 and how fantastic it is I am dying to know what happens and the people are Syfy are just a bunch of fucktards for mishandling this show.

Yay! Go for it. :D
Gaby: pink and kayleesquaringkarma on November 19th, 2010 05:26 am (UTC)
YAY! So glad you're watching this show. It is awesome. I can't wait for January! I really love the theme song, too. It's gorgeous. And SO fitting. One of the singers' names is Alison! The first book has the Benjamin Franklin quote the Pierces' song is playing upon at the very start. Just SO perfect.

Enjoy Vampire Diaries!
Renée: Pretty Little Liars. Secrets.rogueslayer452 on November 19th, 2010 11:55 am (UTC)
I'm so pleasantly surprised at how much I am enjoying this show. I mean, I was curious to see how it would be and it didn't disappoint me. In shocked me because while it has teenagery things like you would expect from this kind of drama, it's not like other teen dramas, not entirely. The mystery takes over, and I like seeing the characters deal with their own personal secrets.

Oh I totally am. :)
bieberfever1 on November 19th, 2010 09:34 pm (UTC)
i LOVE this show ,im reading the books now !:)