|“||Welcome. Willkommen. Bienvinedo.||”|
— Voiceover in A's Dollhouse
|Welcome to the Dollhouse|
|Season 5, Episode 25|
|Air date||March 24, 2015|
|Written by||I. Marlene King|
|Directed by||Ron Lagomarsino|
I'm a Good Girl, I Am
Game On, Charles
Welcome to the Dollhouse is the twenty-fifth episode of Season 5 of Pretty Little Liars and the 120th episode of the show overall. The episode marks the fifth season finale and aired on March 24, 2015.
SynopsisHanna, Emily, Spencer, and Aria are in the back of a van being transported to a different prison to separate them from Alison. The girls have been arrested as accessories to Mona’s “murder.” Hanna tells the girls about a lady in the laundry room who gives people information if they do her work for her. The lady informed Hanna that apparently, the warden received an anonymous tip that the five girls were planning something big and so they are being separated from Alison. Hanna tells the girls that once they reach the prison, they are probably going to be split up too. Hanna gives them a rundown on how to survive behind bars and warns them that everyone will treat them like criminals, even though they are innocent and it’s hard not to give up hope. They vow that even if they are separated, they will always be together in spirit. Suddenly, the van crashes. A hooded figure opens the door to the van and shoots a smoky gas, causing the girls to faint.
The next morning, Toby pays Spencer’s parents a visit and breaks the news to them that Spencer and the other girls are missing. He informs them that the officers escorting the girls were injected with flunitrazepam, the date rape drug, and woke up with no memory of the incident. Veronica thinks that this abduction has Mona written all over it and isn’t sure that Mona is dead. But Peter thinks that Alison is behind this. Toby tells them that although Alison is a “master-manipulator”, she doesn’t have access to resources to pull of the abduction. Toby informs Spencer’s parents that no one knows the liars were kidnapped, not even the other parents, since Tanner doesn’t want the press getting wind of what happened. He also tells them that Tanner believes the girls escaped. Toby gets called on duty and leaves.
Meanwhile, the girls each wake up in rooms which are exact replicas of their bedrooms, but they are locked inside. In Hanna’s room, she begins panicking. Emily notices that there is a camera set up in her room. Aria opens the door to her room but the doorway is blocked by a concrete wall. Spencer breaks a window in her room but realized that the window is blocked by concrete too. A woman’s voice comes over the loudspeaker, telling them to exit their rooms and follow the lighted pathway. The door to Spencer’s room slides open. The girls step out in to the hallway and find each other. They realize that they are trapped in A’s “dollhouse.” They follow the lights in the hallway to a room that is a replica of Alison’s living room. Someone with blonde hair, wearing an Ali Mask and Alison’s yellow top is playing the piano. The person at the piano removes the mask and is revealed to be Mona who is very much alive. The liars are shocked and an emotional Hanna utters “Mona”. But Mona scoffs, and says she’s Alison.
Meanwhile, Toby, Caleb and Ezra have teamed up and are trying to find the girls. Caleb hacks into Rosewood PD’s system and finds the location where ‘A’ hacked the van’s computer system. Since ‘A’ took remote control of the van, ‘A’ must have been hiding nearby. They pull footage from traffic cameras in that area.
Mona tells the liars to sit down and have tea with her and continues acting like she is Alison. Hanna calls her Mona again but Mona snaps at her to stop, and reminds her how much she “loathes that bitch.” A bell chimes and Mona leaves the room and the others follow her, obviously confused. Mona leads them into another room and she sits down with a board game. She tells the liars to sit down and play a mystery date game since “four chimes means it’s game time.” The girls sit down at the table. Another bell chimes and Mona retrieves mail from a nearby mailbox. In the mail are prom invites addressed to each of the girls. Emily realizes that they are playing the mystery date game to find out who will be their date to prom. Hanna screams at the cameras that she isn’t playing the stupid game. She tells the camera that 'A' can have the girls as their ‘precious dolls” but if ‘A’ hurts Caleb, Hanna will kill ‘A’. Mona tries to calm Hanna but Hanna snaps at her that Mona isn’t Alison and there are five of them and only one of ‘A’. The girls, except Mona, decide to find a way to escape. Suddenly, a loud siren begins going off and hurts their ears. Mona tells the girls that it will stop only when they get in their rooms. The girls rush to their rooms and the doors slam and lock behind them and the siren turns off.
Meanwhile, Caleb retrieves the footage from the traffic camera. As they are watching the footage, the video is replaced by a cartoon. Caleb realizes that ‘A’ found a way to override the cameras. Caleb tells them if he can find the right code, he can write a program to pinpoint the source of the hacker’s signal and that’s all they need to show to Tanner to prove that ‘A’ took control of the van.
That night, Hanna is sleeping in her room when Mona barges in and orders Hanna to get up and tells her that they have three minutes. Mona tells the girls that the generator powers down every day at the same time, like clockwork, for three minutes and then the back-up power kicks in. There is no electricity, so the locks on the doors don’t work and ‘A’ can’t see them on the cameras. Mona tells the girls that she has run for 90 seconds in every possible direction. She has found the way out, but there’s an old silo at the end and one has to climb up. There is a ladder there, but it’s about 50 feet to the top and one cannot get to the top before the power turns back on. The other way leads to a big empty room and past that room is a sealed steel door, like that of a vault, at the end of the hall. Mona doesn’t know what’s on the other side of the room since it’s too far back for her to make it back to her room in time. Emily is curious as to what happens if she doesn’t make it back in time and Mona replies that ‘A’ leaves her for days without food or water, blasts the siren “until you’d rather die than listen to it one more second” and on a loop, ‘A’ plays a recording of her loved ones crying at her funeral. Mona wants to know how her mother is dealing with her “death.” Hanna realizes that Mona knows she is not Alison and Mona reveals that ‘A’ is making her pretend to be Alison, and she goes along with it when ‘A’ is watching. Mona wants ‘A’ to think that ‘A’ beat her, but she believes that she is the one who’s winning. The girls fill Mona in on Alison’s trial and their arrest as accessories to Mona’s murder. Hanna tells Mona that Leona never showed up at Alison’s trial. Their time is almost up and the girls rush back to their rooms before they are locked in again.
Veronica and Peter visit Alison in prison. Alison wants to know how Spencer is doing, but Peter tells her to drop the “caring friend act.” Peter is furious that Alison made Spencer lie for her and because of that Spencer is in trouble too but Alison tells him that she was desperate. They demand to know where Spencer is but Alison is shocked. She had no idea that the girls were kidnapped. Peter threatens her that if she lies to them, he will see to it that she doesn’t survive in prison. Alison tells them that she has no idea where Spencer and the others are, but she knows who took them- ‘A’. Peter and Veronica don’t believe her since they think Mona is dead. Alison explains that the ‘A’ game started again when Mona was in Radley, and the new 'A' killed her mother and Mona. Peter is skeptical and asks her why she never went to the police but Alison tells him that there is no proof. Alison swears that she’s telling the truth. Peter wants to know why Alison is fessing up now and Alison simply replies that she has nothing to lose anymore.
Meanwhile at the dollhouse, the girls are in bed. ‘A’ is watching them sleep through the cameras in their room. Spencer lays in bed and remembers a set of blocks she saw in the game room earlier. She scrambles the letters around in her head until she realizes that the blocks spell the name “Charles.” She sits up in bed and whispers, “It has a name.”
The next morning, Mona wakes up and there is a present for her, addressed to Alison. She opens the box and finds a gas mask inside with a card that says “Because you’re my favorite. -A”
Toby is at the police station, showing a report to Tanner that proves that the van transporting the girls was cyber-jacked. Tanner tells him that the analyst for the police came to the same conclusion and hands him their report. Tanner gets on the phone and puts out an APB for Caleb, shocking Toby. Toby doesn’t understand what Caleb has to do with this. Tanner explains that the vehicle was indeed cyber-jacked, but she is sure that Caleb was the one who did it and helped the girls escape.
In the dollhouse, Spencer tells the girls about “Charles”. The girls are brought to a basement and assigned their duties for organizing the prom. Aria, who is responsible for the music, notices that all the songs available are from about 7 years ago. Spencer realizes that the theme for the prom “A Night at the Opera” is the same as that of Melissa and Ian’s prom 7 years ago. Mona continues to act like Alison and brags that she’ll definitely win prom queen. She asks the girls to help her fill out the ballots and the girls, taking the hint, agree. The girls crowd around Mona and Mona scrawls on a ballot, asking them whether they received gas masks from ‘A’ too but the girls reply that they didn’t. Hanna writes down on another ballot that she’s scared.
Toby is back at his apartment along with Ezra and Caleb. Veronica and Peter show up and tell them that they know about ‘A’.
Spencer snaps that she can’t decorate for her senior prom with construction paper and tape. Suddenly, Spencer has an epiphany and comes up with a plan to escape. She starts describing to the girls, a way to decorate the room and gives ‘A’ a list of supplies. Mona catches on to Spencer’s plan and adds on to the list.
At Toby’s apartment, Veronica thinks that they should inform the other girls’ parents about their abduction and the guys agree, but they want to have more information before they do so. And they cannot go to the police either since Tanner is dead-set on the girls being guilty. Veronica and Peter want to go to the media, but Caleb thinks that it’s a bad idea. Ezra hands them his research and warns them that their secrets are in there too. The police arrive downstairs to arrest Caleb. Peter tells Toby that he can’t be there when the police come up since he would be harboring a fugitive. Caleb tells the others to keep looking and goes downstairs to surrender himself. Veronica receives a call from Melissa. Meanwhile at The Brew, Andrew has tapped into Veronica’s phone and is listening in on her call with Melissa.
Back at the dollhouse, the girls are meeting again during the 3 minutes the electricity is shut off. Mona thinks that ‘A’ gave her the gas mask because Alison is his favorite and Alison’s is the only one ‘A’ wants to keep after the prom. Spencer thinks about running up to the vault, but Mona reiterates that there is not enough time. Mona asks Spencer whether she has ever “built one” and Spencer replies that she has never needed to. Mona explains to the others that if ‘A’ delivers the supplies Spencer asked him to, Spencer plans to use them to build a machine that will shut down the electricity temporarily. The doors will be unlocked and the cameras won’t work and they can make a getaway. Emily is unsure about the plan since ‘A’ will show up as it is his prom. Mona is confident that it will work and reminds her that it is five of them against one of him.
The next day, the girls head back down to the basement and the supplies that Spencer asked for are waiting for her. The girls hatch a plan to distract ‘A’. Spencer pretends to be elated while Emily acts annoyed that Spencer is so happy. Emily simply sits down on the floor and tells the others that she is taking a stand against ‘A’ and not helping with the prom. Spencer tells her to “stop being such a bitch” but Emily tells her to stop making things so easy for ‘A’ by giving up. Spencer kicks Emily and calls her out on being a quitter, “You quit the swim team. You quit Paige. You even quit Maya.” This "angers" Emily, who lunges at Spencer. As the girls fight to keep ‘A’ distracted, Mona sneaks out a box of supplies.
Caleb is at the police station with both of the Hastings as his lawyers. Caleb insists that he has no idea where Hanna and the others are, because if he knew, he would be with Hanna now. But Tanner is convinced that Caleb is hiding something from her. Caleb admits that he does know more than he is letting on and admits to hacking the PD’s computer system. Veronica twists his words and tells Tanner that what Caleb means is that if he could get into their system, he could find the van. They manage to convince Tanner to give Caleb access to the Rosewood PD’s computer system to locate the van. He gets a possible location on the missing van, and Tanner radios out for the police. Meanwhile, the girls finish decorating the basement and head back to their rooms where ‘A’ has left dresses for them.
It’s time for the liars’ prom. They put on the dresses that ‘A’ gave them and head down to the basement, which is full of mannequins to make it seem like a real prom. Music begins playing and the girls get down on the dance floor. What they don’t realize is that among the mannequins is ‘A’. Suddenly the music stops and over the loudspeaker, a voice tells them to welcome their prom queen, Alison DiLaurentis. Mona makes her way down the stairs in her Alison mask on. Spencer calls out for Charles and tells him that he should be crowned the prom king. He begins to walk towards them and they put their plan into motion. Aria triggers the machine that Spencer built and the bulbs begin sparking and the electricity turns off. The girls make a run for it.
Meanwhile, Tanner and the cops find the van but it is empty. She orders them to spread out and search the property. Veronica and Peter recognize where they are – it’s the old Campbell farm, where they used to bring the girls for apple-picking. Toby and Tanner find a door leading to the basement and find that the basement is filled with computers. Toby realizes that they just found A’s lair. Tanner turns on the monitors and the video of Hanna screaming at camera appears. Tanner realizes that the girls are indeed being held hostage and Mona is alive.
Meanwhile, Spencer separates from the others and finds the vault. There are mannequins and other keepsakes in the room. Spencer turns on the projector and a video starts playing. It is a video of Jessica holding a baby girl at the Campbell farm. There are two little blond boys with her and she tells them to kiss their little sister. As Spencer is watching the video, "Charles" sneaks up behind her and Spencer comes face to face with him. But Mona enters the room looking for Spencer, and when Spencer turns back, he is gone.
The girls finally make it outside, but realize that they are still fenced in and the fence is now electric as the electricity comes back on and they can’t get off from the property. As we zoom out, we see that the dollhouse is in the middle of nowhere.
- A hijacks the van that The Liars are in while being transported to prison and kidnaps them. When they wake up, they are in their own look-a-like bedroom, and later discovers that they're in a life-sized dollhouse.
- Mona is alive and has been in the Dollhouse since her "death".
- Mona is being forced by A to pretend she is Alison.
- Alison tells Veronica and Peter about A.
- Toby, Ezra, and Caleb team up to find the Liars.
- Caleb finds the van that the Liars were kidnapped in.
- A makes the Liars re-create the Rosewood High School Prom that Melissa and Ian attended.
- When Spencer went to A's vault, she watches a footage of Mrs. DiLaurentis with the two toddler boys in a farm called the Campbell Farm where the girls used to go apple-picking.
- A is revealed to be Charles DiLaurentis, who is presumably Alison and Jason's brother and the third DiLaurentis child.
- Tanner finds out that Mona is alive, meaning that Alison is no longer guilty of her murder.
- The Liars switch the electricity off temporarily in order to escape from the dollhouse. The girls are unable to escape since they are fenced in and the electricity comes back on and the fence becomes electric.
Title and Background
- "Welcome to the Dollhouse" is a 1995 American independent coming of age film.
- The word "Dollhouse" refers to A's lair because A likes to keep dolls in his/her lair as seen in various episodes.
- The Liars are kidnapped by 'A' while being transported to prison. They wake up in a life-size dollhouse of 'A' and are welcomed to the dollhouse in three different languages.
- Troian Bellisario as Spencer Hastings
- Ashley Benson as Hanna Marin
- Lucy Hale as Aria Montgomery
- Shay Mitchell as Emily Fields
- Janel Parrish as Mona Vanderwaal
- Sasha Pieterse as Alison DiLaurentis
- Ian Harding as Ezra Fitz
- Tyler Blackburn as Caleb Rivers
- Keegan Allen as Toby Cavanaugh
- Lesley Fera as Veronica Hastings
- Nolan North as Peter Hastings
- Andrea Parker as Jessica DiLaurentis
- Roma Maffia as Linda Tanner
- Brandon W. Jones as Andrew Campbell
- Marlene finished writing the script November 5, 2014.
- The table read was on November 11, 2014.
- Filming began November 12, 2014, and wrapped November 20, 2014.
- The episode was watched live by 2.64 million viewers.
- The episode was dubbed "#BigAReveal" by ABC Family across social media.
- "Unwritten" by Natasha Bedingfield - (The girls arrive to A's senior prom).
- "Makin' Me Dance" by Mirjam von Eigen - (The girls fake dancing while looking around the prom room which is filled with mannequins; 'A' looks out from behind one of the mannequins).
- "Walkin' After Midnight" by Patsy Cline - (Spencer enters A's room in the dollhouse and surveys it before turning off the record player).
- "Don't Fence Me In" by Billy Williams & Sammy Kaye - (The girls and Mona get outside, only to find that they're surrounded by an electric fence).
Behind the Scenes