2010 Obsessions: You're not watching 'Pretty Little Liars' yet?
December 28th, 2010
09:00 AM ET

2010 Obsessions: You're not watching 'Pretty Little Liars' yet?

Four attractive and stylish teenage girls, a handsome young high school teacher, a blind classmate with a secret and a slew of destructive text messages sent by the deceased. If that’s not a recipe for a hit TV series, I don’t know what is.

With its August finale watched by more than 3 million viewers, “Pretty Little Liars” quickly claimed the title of breakout series of the summer. Based on the book series of the same name, “Liars” also nabbed the second spot on Twitter’s list of 2010’s most tweeted-about moments in TV.

Why, you ask, is a teen drama (on ABC Family, of all channels) getting so much hype? Because it’s awesome, that’s why.

“Liars” is a younger “Desperate Housewives,” with an eerily broad demographic of adults, 18 to 30-something, according to TV by the Numbers.

The June premiere, which marked ABC Family’s No. 1 series launch to date, introduced us to each of the main characters – including Alison (Sasha Pieterse), who died a mysterious death prior to the first episode. Sound familiar, “Housewives” fans?

Of course, there are differences: The girls live in a town called Rosewood, not on Wisteria Lane; they attend high school and homecoming dances, not work and conference calls; and they continually receive very personal, threatening messages from “A.” Drama, drama, drama.

It doesn’t matter that the acting isn’t exactly Oscar-worthy, or that the storyline is about as realistic as an episode of “Gossip Girl.” The show just sucks people in, so much so that you’d be hard-pressed to find a viewer who hasn’t turned to Google looking for answers. Some of our commenters even admitted to picking up the books in hopes of piecing the story together faster. Though, there’s a good chance the show will deviate from the novels.

I can’t lie and say there are never any cheesy, tween scenes that pop up - like when Spencer (Troian Bellisario) and her new boy toy randomly break out into song and dance in a country club kitchen. But the show always immediately redeems itself with a juicy new secret or two.

It also helps that each episode ends with a cliffhanger so intense you’ll stay put on the couch for 15 minutes contemplating next week’s events with your roommate. (You don’t have to admit to it, but I know for fact I’m not the only one who does that.)

For me, TV has been devoid of a show this intense since “Veronica Mars” went off the air in 2007. We need a little light-hearted mystery in our lives on our DVR.

“Pretty Little Liars” - starring Bellisario, Ashley Benson, Shay Mitchell and Lucy Hale, all of whom were relatively unknown before “Liars” - returns to the tube on Monday, January 3.

soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. Ashley

    I downloaded the show for free on iTunes and now I am wanting to watch the new episodes. Looks very promising. Sorry that it took me NOW to watch it. Highly addicting!

    January 2, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  2. ashley

    At first I rejecyed the show as well but one day ( the day if the season finale an of their marathon on abc family) I watched one episode. Next thing I knew it was 9oclock the show was over an I was begging for more! Lol sure their teen baby drama made me barf at times but I soon realized that I wanted to know where the relationship was going with the young main character and her english teacher( wrong I know because if it happened in real life I would be calling the cops on the guy , but hey its tv drama so I can indulge). All the haters need to give the show a try and they will be sounding just like me. : )

    December 30, 2010 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
  3. Troubled girl

    No one should follow their hearts at all. I am ugly and my mom is always torturing me like i was like those pretty lil liars. s***.

    December 29, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Victoria

    I wanna see if allison realy died n whos bodie that was that was found at that girls house:`{

    December 29, 2010 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. sunless

    get to that http://www.SUPERSONIC.US.COM

    December 29, 2010 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Got Jesus?

    End Times? If this ABC Family's latest hit, all would presume, indeed we are in the End Times.. Peace to the world.

    December 29, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mark

    This is the first time I've heard of this show. It sounds gay. Just like pretty much every other gay "teen" show on tv.

    December 29, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  8. RichG

    Don't care for these shows, I'm sure the younger crowd loves it and that's ok with me. I just don't get how a show like this is on ABC Family? This is not a family show.

    December 29, 2010 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  9. palintwit

    Maybe that little porker Bristol Palin will do a special appearance.

    December 29, 2010 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  10. Charles McG

    One eazy concept have u ever felt the back of you're head is there a hole does it soften or harden is there a bunch of people this is not right What is happening to people nothing astronomicaly bad has happend here houndred of thousands an where the little island at drift leave the people alone

    December 29, 2010 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
  11. jennifer

    Best show ever other than vampire diaries! The grls r sooo hott!!

    December 29, 2010 at 3:38 am | Report abuse |
  12. jennifer

    Best show ever other than vampire diaries! The grls r shocking hott!!

    December 29, 2010 at 3:37 am | Report abuse |
  13. shylie

    I obviously love this show it is way 2 interesting i mean a girl having n affair with another girl a best friend being kill a mom dating a best friends dad how can u not love it. i watch it when i can n when i do its the best way 2 spend the little time i hav and if i miss episodes i watch them on the internet Abcfamily.com/prettylittleliars

    December 29, 2010 at 3:25 am | Report abuse |
  14. Stosh

    It is a shame, and discouraging, that this show is so popular. It sets a bad example as to what girls should aspire to, what should be important to them. I had truly hpped the show would fail and be cancelled. We are truly doomed as a society, if people are obsessed with dreck like this.

    December 29, 2010 at 2:58 am | Report abuse |
  15. v

    I miss veronica mars that show was the best. i never watched pretty little liars i always get bored & put in a veronica mars dvd.

    December 29, 2010 at 2:03 am | Report abuse |
  16. kay

    I WATCH THIS MORE DAN I watch any thing else like 16 and pregant and true life

    December 29, 2010 at 1:43 am | Report abuse |
  17. kay


    December 29, 2010 at 1:41 am | Report abuse |
  18. Shannon

    Yes I am old enough to be the mom of these girls, but I love this show.

    December 29, 2010 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  19. Vixen Blue

    I am an 18 year old girl and i don't watch this crap! Its so funny how all of you think that evryone who dont agree with this show is supposed to be old... I dont watch Degrassi 16 and pregnant or the secret life of an american teenager either, does that make me old? Wow this makes me ashamed to be in this generation of teenagers!

    December 28, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Charles McG

    You can't ever stop me you went to far

    December 28, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Charles McG

    Do some thing or ill end my life that simple

    December 28, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Charles McG

    So what's the plane 4 police tape look what is all on reacord

    December 28, 2010 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Austyn

    I watched the first episode, decided to read the books and was finished with all 7 novels in 3 weeks. The books are so much better than the show. I highly recommend the books. I will, however, probably continue watching the show just to see how much they change it from the books.

    December 28, 2010 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  24. ella jane

    THIS MONDAY ITLL BE BACK ON WAHOOOOOOOOOOOO im going to DVR it so i can watch it every day after i get home from school. 8th grade all the way. WE ROCK.

    December 28, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • ok...

      So by "we rock", are you meaning children who really should be spending a bit more time soaking up some education and less time posting ridiculous and demeaning remarks on this board?

      December 29, 2010 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  25. Skye

    Man I LOVE this show so much. I enjoyed reading this. Can't wait til January 3rd! 🙂

    December 28, 2010 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Ben Dover

    either everyone posting positive comments are drunk or your 12, this show sucks

    December 28, 2010 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Joe G


    They are soooooooooo fabulous and mischievous, I want to squeeze their little sweet cheeks!

    December 28, 2010 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  28. r Charles McG

    Uu HUA hi guies u

    December 28, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Bri

    I love this show even though there is only one African American character who is the girl's sercet girlfirend. Anywho i had to know what was going on and read everything about the books on wikipedia. Its very intese and i make sure im always at home when it comes on...i just have to dvr it because I go to class on mon nites 🙁

    December 28, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  30. r Charles McG


    December 28, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  31. r Charles McG

    There storys don't add u they used school after school but yet people love it an make sence

    December 28, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Cabell

    I like this show (and actually started reading the books because I couldn't wait to find out what happened), but please, let's not sully the memory of Veronica Mars by suggesting that they're comparable.

    December 28, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  33. kurt

    did i mention the girls are pretty?

    December 28, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  34. kurt

    THIS IS THE BEST SHOW ON TV. if you dont agree just look at the ratings. it has everything. cute pretty girls. mild humora plus its a little misterious. I thikn you older people are just stuck in the 1950s. TV isnt in black and white anymore.

    December 28, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • oldie

      Have you ever heard of spell check? It's a very useful tool, especially when you are trying to mock someone. Also, the rating doesn't show how good a show is; it shows how popular it is. Just because something's popular, doesn't mean it's necessarily good.

      December 28, 2010 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  35. palintwit

    For a second there I thought Pretty Little Liars was about the Palins. But then again the Palins aren't very pretty, but they are liars.

    December 28, 2010 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Bobby G.

    So hot; the radiation has burned my retinas.

    December 28, 2010 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  37. sdjiog

    The author left their name off the article. That means this show is sh|t.

    December 28, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  38. RUSH

    Id like to crack the seals on each one of them

    December 28, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Jax

    People are sheep. They do what they are told. Bahhhhh!

    December 28, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  40. MD

    I don't have to watch the show to know it will be unintelligent, shallow, and just plain stupid. More dumbing down of America...

    December 28, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  41. chantal hairdooo

    it is pretty good. much funnier than the old saturday night live show. plus the girls have nice hair.

    December 28, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  42. aSeniorDiva

    Demographics, my zazz, I am a senior and I love this show!!. Bring it on!!..

    December 28, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  43. CJ

    Love watching this show with my teenaged daughters. I don't really care for one of the story lines, but the rest of it is pretty decent. We are looking forward to the return of the show on January 3rd!

    December 28, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Garebear

    I love this show! I seriously cant wait for the new season! Especially after the cliffhanger from the last episode of last season. 🙂

    December 28, 2010 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  45. chantal hairdooo

    why so few comments? this topic and blog is far more interesting than the harry potter one. maybe people will post more at lunch time. CNN REALLY IS TOO GREAT FOR LETTING US DO THIS. CNN RULES.

    December 28, 2010 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  46. chantal hairdooo

    this show is scrumpdillyumpshus. i think it is the best on tv today. cosmotological signs indicate it is going to be a hit.

    December 28, 2010 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  47. Mandy

    How about no. I have not googled for answers and your blog has saved me from ever watching this crap.

    December 28, 2010 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  48. chantal hairdooo

    this is the most wonderful show ever. better than glee and classier than the young and the restless. as a hollywood cosmotologist ihope to get some business from these talented comedians..

    December 28, 2010 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  49. Posh-Kenneth

    I actually have to thank the writer of this and any other article on the Marquee for reviewing this show. It got me interested while I sit at work and play on the internet when I shouldn't be. Thanks to a view insane reviews and some not so savory tactics, I am caught up... and seriously awaiting its return. so... thanks Marquee blog, you've given me addictions like Jersey Shore (so stupid but i cant stop watching), Mad Men, and now Pretty Little Liars.

    MC YungNFresh

    December 28, 2010 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
  50. thecrow

    "a little light-hearted mystery"


    December 28, 2010 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |

Post a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

About this blog

Our daily cheat-sheet for breaking celebrity news, Hollywood buzz and your pop-culture obsessions.