Pretty Little Liars returned for a special Halloween episode, “Grave New World,” which found the girls running around a costume party in Ravenswood looking for their maybe dead BFF Alison. The episode also served as a introduction into the pilot for the new Pretty Little Liars spinoff, Ravenswood, that will star PLL’s Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) and Miranda (Nicole Gale Anderson), a new character who was introduced in “Grave New World.”

The episode picked up right where the summer finale left off: the girls are all dressed up and ready to crash the creepy Ravenswood Halloween party in the town cemetery and Ezra (Ian Harding) is ‘A’ (he will henceforth be known as EzrA when in evil ‘A’ mode and Ezra when in Mr. Fitz mode). They are determined to find Ali (Sasha Pieterse) before ‘A’ does. At the party, they spot a guy dressed in an old soldier’s uniform – exactly what A is supposedly wearing. Aria goes after him and a blonde girl, who is his cousin, and quickly realizes that he isn’t A. (He’s Luke Matheson played by Brett Dier who appears in Ravenswood). While Aria is chasing leads, Hanna (Ashley Benson) gets really freaked when she spots what looks like two little girls in red coats.

In the graveyard, Aria gets a call from Ezra. He’s just checking up on her, he says. She tells him she can’t talk right now, and we see EzrA lurking behind a brick wall, watching the girls, wearing the old soldier’s uniform.

When they spot a ‘Red Coat’ running through the graveyard, Spencer (Troian Bellisario), Hanna and Emily (Shay Mitchell) run after her with Aria not far behind. Emily, however, gets temporarily held up when she receives a cryptic warning from Ali’s strange Ravenswood ally, Ms. Grunwald (Meg Foster), who tells her that they need to leave. Now.

Meanwhile, Caleb is on an almost empty bus on his way to Ravenswood to meet up with Hanna. It’s only him and a creepy man sitting in the back. He takes a short nap and wakes up with a girl, Miranda, sitting next to him. She tried sitting in the back, she says, but the man freaked her out, so she sat down next to him instead. The two chat and bond over the fact that they are both foster kids – orphans. Miranda is going to Ravenswood in the hopes of connecting with her only remaining relative, her uncle who she believes she’s never met. Caleb worries about Miranda when he finds out her uncle has no idea that she’s coming. Don’t get your hopes up, he warns her, before telling her about his own mysterious uncle-turned-dad.

Instead, the girls almost end up trapped in Ravenswood when they follow Red Coat down a hidden stairwell, only to lost track of her and get trapped in the underground tunnels. Searching for a way out, Spencer leads the girls down the stone tunnels, filled with the occasional creepy statue, towards a breeze of air.

The breeze quickly escalates, turning into a huge gust of wind. The girls all go up against a wall and hold hands for dear life. The wind is intense, and dry leaves are hurled at their faces. When the wind subsides, they’ve lost Hanna. Aria, who had been holding Hanna’s hand, is now holding hands with a statue.

Caleb and Miranda arrive in Ravenswood and part ways at the cemetery, but not before exchanging phone numbers. Caleb goes into the party to look for Hanna and Miranda is off to her uncle’s house.

Spencer, Aria and Emily search frantically for Hanna, but the tunnels are endless and confusing. Hanna, herself, is searching for her friends, or Ali, or anyone, really, that could help get her out of this mess. She doesn’t succeed. What she does find is a message written in a red substance (could it be blood?) on the walls: “HELP ME,” with a pile of rats placed right next to it. She runs, and manages to make it out of the tunnels, only to find herself in yet another scary, Victorian style room.

Afraid, Hanna looks around and heads to a phone booth at the back of the room. EzrA, costume now complete with a gas mask to hide his face form the girls, is right behind her. He observes her walking into the phone booth, but doesn’t pursue. If he really is ‘A,’ then he’s waiting and hoping that the girls will draw Ali out of hiding. Hanna tries calling for help (her cell has “negative” bars), but the signal is full of static and eventually all that gets through is an old song. Hanna moves to leave, and realizes she is trapped in the phone booth.

After a creepy light show outside the phone booth, Hanna is rescued by Miranda – she somehow found her way into Miranda’s uncle’s home. At first, both of the girls are suspicious, but once Miranda identifies Hanna as Caleb’s girlfriend, they decide to stick together. This place is scaring both of them, and there’s strength in numbers. As they walk through the house trying to find the front door, they come across what appears to be a funeral home. Miranda flashes back to when her parents died and her uncle sent her away. He said it was for her protection, but Miranda doesn’t remember much else – not even his face.

Back in the tunnels, Emily, Aria and Spencer hear what sounds like a woman screaming. Believing it could be Ali, they run towards the noise and become separated. Spencer somehow ends up in a greenhouse and battles it out with ‘A,’ and it looks like she has the upper hand. She levels ‘A’ and is about to pull off the gas mask when EzrA springs back to life and hurls her into the ground, knocking her out. By the time Aria and Emily find Spencer, EzrA is long gone, but, on the bright side, nobody is dead and they find the source of the cries. It’s a tape recorder playing on loop in another creepy room. There, they come face to face with Ms. Grunwald. She tells them that she is the caretaker of this house, and that this room is where she goes when she feels her psychic abilities coming on. In the room, she tells the girls that one of them “has been touched” by the person Ali is running from.

Miranda reunites Caleb and Hanna in the graveyard. There, they find a headstone with Miranda’s name and face on it (so creepy). Hanna and Caleb hesitate to leave Miranda in Ravenswood alone, and Caleb decides to stay with her, with Hanna’s full support. Hanna heads towards the car to meet up with Spencer, Emily and Aria and Caleb and Miranda wander off in the cemetery, and stumble upon a headstone with Caleb’s name and face on it. It looks like Caleb has another reason to stay in Ravenswood after all.

Spencer has a flat tire, and no spare. Luckily, the girls are saved when Ezra conveniently arrives and offers them a ride home to Rosewood. Spencer seems doubtful, but the girls all pile in his car anyways and he drops them off in Spencer’s driveway.

In Spencer’s backyard by the barn, they finally come face to face with the real Red Coat. It’s Alison – she is alive. She tells them that she is still in danger; she’s afraid of someone, someone who isn’t who she thought she was running from. She doesn’t manage to tell them anything else, but she does tell Hanna to remember what she told her in the hospital (after ‘A’ ran her over with her car).

Ezra comes up to the girls. Aria forgot her cell phone in his car, and he has come to return it. When they look back, Ali is gone. Is she really running from Ezra?

Find out when Pretty Little Liars returns, Jan. 7, 8 p.m. on ABC Family.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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