Warning: Spoilers ahead. When Pretty Little Liars first premiered in 2010, fans were obsessed with the show’s continuous mystery and trying to figure out A’s identity. Now, more than 10 years later, the entire series has hit streaming services and viewers are watching the entire story of Alison DiLaurentis’ mysterious death unfold on screen again.
Starring Troian Bellisario, Ashley Benson, Lucy Hale, Shay Mitchell, Keegan Allen, Sasha Pieterse, Janel Parrish and Tyler Blackburn, the show was based on the series of books by Sara Shepard and aired on Freeform for seven seasons until coming to an end in 2017. Throughout its time on the air, Pretty Little Liars became known for its wild storylines — like teachers dating students and anonymous texts from someone who pretended to be dead.
“The mystery is what made people talk about [the show]: Is Alison alive or dead? If she’s dead, who killed her? Who is A? The writers were masters, raising more questions and keeping the viewers on their toes for years,” Janel told Cosmopolitan in 2017. “For a while I was thinking, ‘Oh, it’s one of the parents!’ That it was Hanna or Alison’s mom. On this show, everyone is a suspect at some point. What if all the parents were in on it?”
The actress added, “This show is about badass girls. It’s a very powerful, women-driven cast. Their friendship is really what gets them through everything. Four girls who would do anything for each other — it was very empowering to be a part of a show like that.”
Of course, while watching, fans were obsessed with the romance elements, but in the same Cosmo interview, Lucy said, “Aside from the drama, the scandal, and the mystery, at the root of the show is a story about true friendship.”
But how exactly did the cast and crew pull off all these shocking stunts over the years? As it turns out, the show wasn’t all text messages and fashionable looks when the cast was on set back in the day. There’s actually a bunch of seriously shocking behind-the-scenes secrets about the mysterious series, including why Keegan’s character, Toby, didn’t die like in the novels.
“I was only supposed to be in six episodes,” the actor said on a June 2021 episode of the “Inside of You” podcast. “My character dies in the book series, but fans at that time, social media had gotten you know, starting to get a fire under it, and fans were demanding that they didn’t kill Tobias Cavanaugh, which was my character. They’re just like, ‘Do not kill him.'”
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