A.D. didn't waste any time in turning up the heat in the Pretty Little Liars' "Endgame."
After lobbing Spencer (Troian Bellisario) a softball and sending her to go have a needed conversation with Toby (Keegan Allen) in the final season premiere, A.D. upped the ante in Tuesday's episode by hatcheting Emily's (Shay Mitchell) sweet nature to pieces. Yes, the most nurturing and docile member of the Liars tangoed with the dark side with frighteningly little prodding from the Liars' tormentor.
Emily's torture came from one of her swim team members, Addison Derringer (Ava Allan), who is basically like a teenage Alison (Sasha Pieterse) on steroids. When Emily dared to call Addison out on skipping swim practice, Addison decided to try and blackmail Emily out of her job for being "inappropriate" with teenage girls on the team. The Liar attempted to play by the rules at first, but when she got the suspicion that Addison was working with Jenna Marshall (Tammin Sursok), all it took was one text from A.D. to make Emily go postal on the teenage brat.
Emily tried to return the blackmailing favor to Addison courtesy of a video delivered by A.D., but luckily Paige (Lindsey Shaw) had already put a plan in motion to give Addison a taste of her own medicine and saved Emily from getting her hands too dirty. A.D. admired Emily's attempt though, and rewarded her with the next puzzle piece that will help complete the game.
While Emily might have been saved from making a potential career ending mistake, the hour proved just how skilled A.D. is at manipulating the Liars into doing the stalker's bidding. It wouldn't be that surprising if Spencer or Hanna (Ashley Benson) went off on a 10th grader, but reducing Emily to such rage and insecure antics is a real feat. Emily is usually the one calling for peace and order in the group. She's the maternal, caring one, so it's a big deal that A.D. could so easily tempt her into becoming the darkest version of herself.
Don't think that A.D. is only about mental manipulation though. While Emily was being played like a puppet, A.D. also triggered Hanna's PTSD by locking her in a cage that felt all too familiar to her torture chamber from last season. Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) was able to find Hanna before she was seriously hurt, but it's clear that she's very shaken up by the experience and A.D. is twisting the knife into a wound that never fully closed.
The game is in full motion now, but the Liars still don't seem to fully understand what they are dealing with. If A.D. can turn Emily against herself so easily, it won't be a challenge at all to get the rest of the girls to turn on the group. Once the girls are divided, it will be very simple for A.D. to take over completely. If the Liars want to be able to survive this game they need to figure out exactly what it is that A.D. wants and get to it first. Their best bet for doing that is learning to trust each other and not falling for the most obvious bait.
Pretty Little Liars continues Tuesdays at 8/7c on Freeform.