The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1 Review: A Chilling Spinoff Worth the Watch

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Alison Dilaurentis and Monda Vanderwaal are back on The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1, and it's time for fans to hop on board this brand new series.

Pretty Little Liars may have ended back in 2017, but the chilling and suspenseful events of the spinoff's series premiere make it appear as if you never left the world in the first place. 

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The Pilot served as both an introductory for the new characters and as a jaw-dropping setup for an intriguing story that will most likely carry the opening season. 

Sneaking Away - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

Much like its successor, The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1 kicked off the show with one major question that could end up being the very soul of the series: Who is it?

But before we discuss everything that went down, remember that if you missed the episode, you can watch The Perfectionists online right here at TV Fanatic!

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Pretty Little Liars spent a great deal of time building up the relationship between Alison Dilaurentis and Emily Fields.

With Alison supposedly dead for seasons on end, it seemed as if a romance between the two was simply impossible.

But Alison's return changed everything, and the two were able to create a stronger friendship than before because of Emily's ability to forgive Alison for her past mistakes. 

As it turns out, Emily isn't quite as over Alison's wrongdoings as Pretty Little Liars made us believe. 

Emily loves me. She just can't get past the past.


In all honesty, Emily and Alison's current relationship status doesn't make much sense at all. Especially considering they were happily engaged with two children when we last saw them. 

But the fact remains that Sasha Pieterse is on the show and Shay Mitchell is not. For the series to happen with only one of them, there did have to be some explanation for Alison and Emily's time apart.

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Rather this was the right move remains to be seen, but a move did have to happen. Both literally and figuratively. 

The dynamic between Alison and Mona is something that we're excited to see further explored. It will be interesting to see how these characters play off of one another and whether they'll create an alliance or remain more antagonistic.

Catching Up - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1 was told in Alison's point of view more than anyone else's, but Mona also had a fair amount of screentime.

We love Mona as a character and want to say we're past everything she's done. But whether we're past it or not, can we ever trust her? Is Mona's purpose on the series to be Alison's friend or foe?

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It appears as if Mona is just as in the dark as everyone else, especially when it was revealed that she was unknowingly being watched through Beacon Guard.

But Mona has always been an unpredictable individual, which is what makes her such an interesting character. She has a spirit you can't help but love no matter what side she's on. 

Pie? - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

It's hard to embrace the new, especially when you've been invested in certain characters for so long, but the new additions to the Pretty Little Liars world fit the mold the original series created perfectly. 

You know, it's funny. I think if maybe there wasn't a Nolan we could've been friends.


We're not ready to completely write home about them from just one episode, but we are intrigued by both their personalities and storylines and are open to learning more.

The newcomer that formed the quickest connection with the audience was undoubtedly Ava. 

While she may have come off as privileged and careless during her initial conversation in Alison's class, it is quickly revealed that is not the case. 

Ava's working hard and making sacrifices to put herself through school as well as create a name for herself. She doesn't want to be known only by her father who is currently on the run from the cops for embezzlement. 

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Her secret relationship with Nolan seemed off from the start, but that's mostly because Nolan is a complete wild card.

It's impossible to know what kind of character Nolan is by just watching the first episode. He's either being a warm and heartful guy or a master manipulator. There's no in-between. 

Meet Nolan - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

The way he blackmailed both Caitlin and Dylan into doing his bidding lead the audience to believe that he was a horrendous person. But his genuine belief in Ava, as well as his desire to keep her safe above all else, left our heads spinning.

It's because of this that the audience couldn't be either saddened or satisfied by his sudden death.

Instead, viewers were meant to be shocked and full of questions that only watching the series can answer. 

But it wasn't a huge surprise to discover that Nolan's sister, Taylor, is alive.

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The entire story about her death seemed sketchy from the start, but discovering her whereabouts so quickly was unexpected.

It didn't give viewers enough time to fully accept her death as a fact and leave them stunned when they learned it was false. 

The meeting between Caitlin, Dylan, and Ava in the woods began as a seemingly optimistic conversation. Alison can see straight through these kids and wants to help them if they'll allow her.

New TA - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

Alison's character development from the beginning of Pretty Little Liars to now is remarkable. The mean girl who thrived on chaos and misery is now the woman who dedicated her life to becoming a teacher and mentor to others. 

Alison Dilaurentis is an example of good, proper character development. 

We were really impressed with your journey from mean girl to mentor.


The trio should've decided to accept her help, but instead ended up on a weird rampage in which they jokingly discussed different ways to kill Nolan. 

The first or second crack was okay, but it quickly reached a creepy and uncomfortable point. They looked far too excited about their vivid plans to murder their classmate, and they were quickly getting carried away.

Murder is not something you want to get caught up in, kids. 

It doesn't seem likely that any of Nolan's fake friends were responsible for his murder, despite it playing out as Caitlin had imagined it.

It's just like you imagined it.


But after that conversation they had, we can't say we'd be too shocked if one of them ended up a serial killer. 

Meet Caitlin - The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1

The figure on the roof with Nolan could be anyone at this point, but judging by the way Nolan was speaking to them, it's more than likely a character we haven't met yet.

As the final scene of The Perfectionists Season 1 Episode 1 displayed, residents of BHU are getting watched, and Nolan and Taylor were in danger for attempting to get to the bottom of it. 

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If the cryptic message hidden behind Alison's wallpaper wasn't enough to give you chills, the site of Nolan's bloody body on a spike was a rather daunting and eventful way to kick off the series. 

As much as we want our questions answered, we know that if The Perfectionists is anything like Pretty Little Liars, each episode will leave us with more questions than we had before.

But what did you think of the premiere Pretty Little Liars fans? Did it exceed expectations? Did it disappoint? Let us know in the comments section down below! 

The Perfectionists airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on Freeform.

Pilot Review

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Rachel Foertsch is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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