I know I'm extremely late to the party, but one of my favorite shows to watch during quarantine has been Pretty Little Liars.
The show is utterly ridiculous, but that's kind of the point. I love the totally bonkers mysteries, the wild school dances, and the plot twists that make no sense.
But there's one big part of the teen drama that I just can't get on board with: Aria and Ezra's relationship.
They're one of the central couples of the show, and I remember almost everyone rooting for them back in 2010. But here's the thing: Ezra is Aria's TEACHER.
Now, Lucy Hale may have been 21 when she first appeared on PLL, but her character, Aria, is supposed to be 16 at the start of the show. Ezra is at least 22 or 23.
I know part of the fun of watching a teen drama is getting lost in the ridiculousness of it all, and I have my fair share of problematic ships, but these student-teacher relationship storylines are just plain gross.
Pretty Little Liars portrays Ezra and Aria as star-crossed lovers. Other characters may object to the romance, but they just don't understand true love! Right? Um, no. It's CREEPY.
At first, it's assumed Ezra had no idea of Aria's age until she popped into his English class. But then we find out in Season 4 that he actually knew exactly who Aria was all along — and that he started dating her because he was writing a book about Alison.
So yeah, Ezra had bad intentions from the start. Why exactly are we supposed to be okay with this relationship again?
Not to mention Ezra is just super manipulative in general. Within the first few episodes of the show, he goes from inviting Aria to his apartment to being all, "How could you possibly think this could work??" and moping around at homecoming, pining for her.
They break up several times over the course of the show, but they end up getting married in the end. MARRIED. This man married his student, and everyone is just totally cool with it.
Seriously, this whole storyline was just YIKES.
Ughhhh. Can we all agree the student-teacher trope needs to be retired from TV already?
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