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He doesn't get to die and make me look like a criminal.
Ashley (about Wilden)
Crash and Burn, Girl!
Season 4, Episode 7
78
Air date July 23, 2013
Written by Bryan Holdman
Directed by Ron Lagomarsino
Episode Guide
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Under The Gun
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The Guilty Girl's Handbook

Crash and Burn, Girl! is the seventh episode of Season 4 of Pretty Little Liars. The episode aired on July 23, 2013.

Synopsis

The girls are over at Hanna's house helping her deal with her mother's arrest. Emily's shoulder is still hurting her, and Spencer is still not ready to reveal what's going on with Toby and "A." Aria is glad Emily and Spencer are talking again. The three of them strategize on how to get Hanna to eat and agree to be there for her for whatever she needs.

Upstairs, Hanna is on the phone with Caleb. She makes him agree not to do anything stupid. When they hang up, we see Caleb is over at Toby's place. They've put all the information they have about the night of the fire at the Lodge up on a board and are preparing to investigate every lead. 

Emily's mom stops by her room to tell her she has made an appointment for prolotherapy treatment for Emily's shoulder. Insurance won't cover the first few sessions, so Pam is concerned about they will pay for it, but won't let Emily contribute her own money. Physical therapy hasn't been helping, so Pam emphasizes how important it is to try this new treatment. She tells Emily she needs to focus on healing her shoulder, and let Hanna spend time with her father.

The school is buzzing about Connor's wrecked car. Mike comments to Aria that Connor should have sold the car for scrap and gotten a new one instead driving it to school smashed and damaged. Mike is shocked when Aria seems to be defending Connor, and makes it clear that Connor is a wuss and deserves everything he got. Aria asks Mike where he was while Connor's car was getting smashed. He doesn't quite deny it, but implies he couldn't have been the one who destroyed the car.

Hanna visits her mom in jail. She tells her that Tom has been staying at their house during the week and that she will spend weekends at his place. They talk about what Ashley should wear to her arraignment. Hanna is in denial about how long her mother might be away. She talks about buying tickets in advance for the school's upcoming silent auction. Ashley tearfully tells her it is not a good idea.

Toby and Caleb are searching for matches to the partial tail number Spencer got off the plane Red Coat arrived on. They talk about the girls' theory that Alison is still alive and if she was the one who knocked out Toby or killed Wilden. Caleb notices the words 'blonde girl' written on a folder and asks Toby if it relates to Red Coat. Toby says it's something else and puts the folder away. He doesn't want Caleb to know he is looking into his mother's death. They get a hit on the tail number and decide to head down to Howell Acres Flight Center to get more information.

Emily talks to Hanna at school about where Shana might be hiding and when she'll pop up again. Some boys nearby are staring at Hanna because her mom was arrested. Emily starts to get in their faces, but Ezra steps in.

Mr. Hackett stops Aria on the stairs to ask if she knows anything about Connor's car being vandalized. She covers for Mike by saying he was home videochatting with their mom at the time. He asks if Mike is still taking his medication because he wouldn't want a repeat of his behavior last year. Aria assures him Mike is fine and he lets her go. 

Emily talks to Pam at the station and tries to suss out if Lt. Tanner told her about the video of the person wearing the Emily mask. She gives Emily the insurance card for her appointment that afternoon. Some detectives stop by Pam's desk and have her lock up the key to Wilden's apartment in the evidence box. Emily asks if they are investigating other suspects besides Ashley. Pam tells her the investigation is ongoing. When Pam stps away to print directions to the clinic, Emily plots ot steal the key out of the evidence box.

At home, Byron asks Aria if she has seen Mike, or if she knows anything about what happened to Connor's car. He thought Mike and Connor were friends and doesn't understand why Connor's father is pushing to have Mike expelled. Aria admits it all started when Connor kissed her and she told him she wasn't interested, so in retaliation, Connor spread a nasty rumor about her at school. Byron asks why anybody would start a rumor about her and Aria is forced to admit there has been talk about her and Ezra. Byron says Connor is the one who should be punished and leaves to find Mike.

Spencer walks in on Hanna forging her mother's signature on checks. Hanna is making sure the bills get paid while her mother is away. Spencer tries to break it to her gently that her mom's case may not be going well. Ashley had a tense history with Wilden. She is facing 20 years in prison if Veronica can prove Wilden treatened her, or life in prison if she can't. Hanna can't believe how bad "A" has made her mom look.

Toby and Caleb make up a story and question the guy at the desk at the Flight Center, named Nigel Wright. Caleb slips him 40 bucks to show them the flight information. It shows the pilot is named John Smith, leading them to believe it is forged information. Nigel mentions it was foggy that night and that the airstrip there is very small, so it would have been very difficult to land. Nigel wishes them luck and the boys take off, then Nigel makes a suspicious phone call.

The girls get together at Aria's and Aria says that she thinks "A" is setting up her brother. Emily rushes in and tells them to hurry up - tonight, they are breaking into Wilden's apartment.

Wilden's apartment is a big mess. Spencer points out that the cops had already been there searching for clues about his murder. Aria hands out gloves so they don't leave any fingerprints behind and they split up to look around. The phone rings and spooks the girls. 

Back at Toby's place, Toby brings up that something Nigel said is bothering him. He thinks the only way Nigel could have known about the fog that night is if he was there. Toby shows Caleb the lighter he found the night of the fire. 'NW' could stand for North West, or for Nigel Wright. 

The girls don't turn up much in their search. They notice there aren't very many personal items or knick knacks around the apartment, though Aria points out Wilden's 'film collection' counts as rather personal. Then the girls spot a box on the floor. They open it and find a bunch of rotten steaks. There's a note inside that says, "Can't wait to see you at our little barbecue. Kisses, A." 

The next day, Aria waits for her dad and Mike outside Mr. Hackett's office. Ezra walks by and asks her what's going on. She says Mike is getting railroaded in there and he didn't do it. Ezra apologizes for trying to swoop in and comfort her yesterday since it's not his place to do that anymore. Aria mentions how Mr. Hackett had questioned her about Mike's medication, then Byron comes into the hall and greets Ezra. Ezra offers his help, but Byron declines, and Ezra leaves. Byron says Aria can wait for them at home.  Emily goes back to the station to return the key, but the cops have already noticed it missing. They are searching through Pam's desk and Emily overhears that if they don't find that key, they are going to have a problem.

The boys show Nigel the lighter and he immediately starts to run, but Caleb stops him and Toby threatens to set the wastepaper basket on fire if he doesn't talk. Nigel says he was paid to fake a flight plan, he wasn't at Thornhill, and after some more prodding, he gives up the name of the person who paid him - CeCe Drake. Then Nigel runs away, but not before Caleb lifts his phone from his pocket.

Mr. Hackett is about to decide Mike's punishment, when Ezra walks up and pulls him aside to talk. Ezra asks if there were any witnesses or if it is all hearsay on Connor's part. Mr. Hackett says there must be some sort of punishment and Connor's family is not willing to compromise. Ezra brings up Mr. Hackett's inappropriate questioning of Aria about Mike's medication. Mr. Hackett realizes that was the wrong thing to do, but points out that Ezra is treading dangerous water by getting involved in a situation with a family he has such personal history with.

Caleb and Toby crack Nigel's password and see he has been making calls to a number in New York. They wonder if it is CeCe's number, why would she want to frame Ashley for murder or hurt Hanna and the other girls. They posit she could have set the fire, killed Wilden and framed Ashlely to cover her tracks. Spencer tells them that CeCe visited Mona in Radley, a piece of information she hadn't shared with them before. Out of earshot of Caleb, Spencer and Toby discuss if CeCe could have been the blonde girl Dr. Palmer had referred to. 

Mike finds Aria at home and mentions it wasn't smart for her to tell the Vice Principal he was videochatting with mom because they could have checked on that. Aria asks what the outcome was and Mike says that Mr. Fitz talked to Mr. Hackett and then Mr. Hackett told Connor's family he had no reason to expel Mike. Mike says if anything like this happens again, he wants to be ready.

Pam asks Emily why she rescheduled her appointment with the clinic. She lies she had to help Hanna witth something. Pam understands Hanna is in a tough situation, but getting treatment for her injury should be Emily's number one priority. Emily apologizes, then Pam tells her she has been suspended from work and leaves to call her husband. 

Aria slips a note under Ezra's door just as he's coming around the corner. She tells him it was a thank you note and she appreciates what he did for her brother. Ezra tells her there isn't anything he wouldn't do for her. Aria doesn't know how to respond and takes off.

Hanna visits her mom again and tells her she should say it was self-defense. She would only get 20 years in prison as opposed to a life sentence and Hanna needs to know that she will someday get to be with her mom again. Ashley admits she has made some poor choices, but refuses to admit to a murder she didn't commit. 

Back at the flight center, Nigel talks to an unknown woman about Caleb stealing his phone. He makes her a cup of tea and warns her it's hot, calling her 'babe.' On the table before her we see a pair of sunglasses and a folded up walking stick, implying he is speaking to Jenna. Emily overhears her mom talking to Wayne about being suspended without pay. She doesn't know how they are going to make ends meet and wonders if she should be looking for another job while things at the station are sorted out. Rightfully feeling guilty, Emily starts to go downstairs with the key she stole, but before she can, a car comes crashing through the living room. Pam dives out of the way and Emily comes running to help. No driver emerges from the car. Elsewhere, a hooded figure buys a hardware store gift card for Emily in the amount of $50 dollars as well as a home repair handbook and a roll of duct tape.

Trivia

  • The table read was on May 10, 2013.
  • Filming began on May 13, 2013 and ended on May 21, 2013.
  • Caleb and Toby team up to find out who/where "A" is in this episode, sparking the nickname Taleb.

Title and Background

  • The original title of this episode was "Bros Kicking 'A'." This was later revealed to be a joke.
  • “Crash and Burn, Girl!” is also the title of a song from the Swedish pop singer, Robyn. 
  • "Crash and Burn, Girl!" could refer to the car crashing into Emily's house.
  • "Crash and Burn, Girl!" may also refer to references made in the episode to the fire in the Season 3 finale (especially the lighter which Toby questions throughout the episode).

Main Cast

Guest Cast

Quotes

Emily: No one’s seen Shana since the open mic. It’s like she disappeared.
Hanna: She just can’t disappear. This isn’t Hogwarts. There’s only so many halls and classrooms.

Spencer [about putting away the dishes: I think that goes on the top shelf.
Emily (in pain): Really? Thanks for telling me that… this time.

Mike [about Connor's car]: Now you feel sorry for this guy?
Aria: No. No. Part of me would have gladly taken a whack at that piñata.

Aria [about Wilden's 'film collection']: They were just stacked on his nightstand like, "Hmm, what do I want to watch tonight, Jimmy Kimmel or boobs?"

Toby [to Caleb]: Like you said, somebody's blowing a lot of smoke, I'm guessing it's our buddy Nigel.

Nigel: Looks like a regional airport in Delaware. It's nowhere near Thornhill. No passengers, pilot's name is John Smith.
Caleb: Sure it is. And I'm Pocahontas.

Spencer [watching Hanna forge her mother's signature on checks]: Okay. You are several steps beyond getting yourself out of gym.

Ezra: How are you doing?
Hanna: Well, it's not that easy. Everywhere I go people are staring at me all judgy-eyed, like that lady in the book.
Ezra: Uh...?
Hanna: You know the one.
Ezra: Well, there are a lot of books in the world, Hanna. Like, really a lot.
Hanna: No, the-the one with the judgy eyes and... and the knitting, um... Madame Debarge.
Ezra: Defarge?
Hanna: Close enough.

Featured Music

  • "The Devil Takes Care Of His Own" by Band of Skulls (Toby and Caleb team up)
  • "Freight Train" by Sara Jackson-Holman (Hanna packs her mom's clothes for court)
  • "From the Sky" by Peter Bradley Adams (Aria talks to Ezra outside his apartment)
  • "It All Comes Down to You" by Tyler Blackburn (Hanna on the phone with Caleb)

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