SPOILER WARNING: If you care about Pretty Little Liars and haven't watched "Now You See Me, Now You Don't," the mid-Season 4 finale, DO NOT READ ON. Also, what are you doing with your life?
Those who have watched the episode, however, already know the gasp-worthy reveal, so there's no need to stall any further: Ezra is "A." Well, maybe. He's at least somehow involved, and given his rage at finding "A's" lair disturbed, things aren't looking so good. BuzzFeed spoke to Ian Harding about finding Ezra's dark side, what this means for Ezria, and following the clues.
I imagine you've been getting inundated with angry tweets since last night.
Ian Harding: There have been some people who were like, "Oh, no, I'm so sad," but thankfully, there have been no death threats. I haven't received packages that are questionable on my doorstep, so I think, for the most part, people are OK with how things played out, or at least excited to see how it all comes to a close.
How long have you been sitting on this secret?
IH: Since February. [Creator] Marlene [King] said, "Hey, there's a possible dynamic we want to investigate." I was like, "Great, that sounds amazing. I'm excited by that." At the time, she said I would take a "dark turn," but that's a very, very simple way of putting a whole slew of possible scenarios. So I've been excited about it and been working on it for [several] months.
Talk about filming that last scene in the midseason finale. This is the first time we've seen Ezra pissed off to that extent. What was it like to jump into that different side of the character?
IH: It's great. It's gonna open up a whole thing for Ezra, and there have been so few times when I have been actually angry and outwardly aggressive on the show — I mean, pretty much zero times. I think the only other comparable moment was when I confronted my mother in that art gallery last season. And even then, the note from the director was, "Hey, take it back. Take it back. Less aggression."
Actually, we filmed one take of me slamming the closet door shut, and I just punched it. I cracked it. And I was like, "Yeah, yeah, awesome, I'm a total man!" Except for the fact that then I really hurt my hand. I still have a scar there. And I look like a big idiot. But it's been fun.
It must be exciting to be able to show more range after all this time.
IH: As you've said, he's been such a good guy. Even with his questionable relationship with a student, there's still a goodness to him, and it's been a lot of fun to discover after four seasons a whole new side of this guy. It's been nothing but exciting to play him. Without giving away too much, in [the second half of Season 4] it gets way more colorful.
Last time we spoke, you admitted that you had a hard time keeping up with everything that happens on the show, and I don't blame you. Now that you know Ezra has this other side to him, do you think you'll be revisiting past episodes?
IH: I figure I'm gonna have to go back and actually watch other episodes that maybe I missed. It's always hard to watch myself, so I haven't actually seen all of the episodes that have aired. But yeah, I've seen several internet memes that are like, "Oh my God, we should have seen this coming, because this happened." And I'll look at it and go, "Wow, I don't even remember filming that." So I have to actually go back and maybe take note. But yeah, apparently the signs are out there, so I maybe need to do some backwards research.
I think we all need to be watching the show more closely. I don't even know if it's possible to watch Pretty Little Liars closely enough.
IH: There's so much information. And I don't know if you could, really. I get lost.
It looks like Aria and Ezra might be headed for a reconciliation. I know you can't say much about Ezra's true motivations, but would you say his feelings for her are sincere?
IH: Absolutely. It wouldn't have worked if there weren't sincere feelings, because I don't think he's a sociopath. Maybe I could be wrong, and I go into work tomorrow, and the writers are like, "So, you're nuts. You're a killer." I don't think that would happen. It feels too cheap. The whole thing — and a reoccurring thing in Ezra's life and his storyline — is that he's torn between what he really wants to do and what he supposedly should do. So I think that we're gonna see their relationship play out in a different way, but now with the backdrop of this secret that he has, that we know he has and Aria doesn't.
We also learned in last night's episode that Alison is probably still alive. How did you react to that news? And also, it seems likely you'll be interacting more with Sasha Pieterse going forward?
IH: In terms of having scenes with Sasha, I can't say specifically, but I'm definitely interacting with characters in [the second half of the season] that I have not interacted with, or my experience with them has been very limited. I definitely have more scenes with the four girls, and that's been a lot of fun.
Regarding her still being alive or not being alive, I'm really interested to see how that plays out. It's gonna be one that needs some serious explaining to be done, but it'll be a fun time.
I have to ask — you were ranked high on our hottest guys of Pretty Little Liars list. Are you at all concerned that going to the dark side might diminish your hotness?
IH: You know, I have never really given a shit about the hotness level. It's just kind of that thing that's there. If people find me less attractive because I've done some shady things, maybe that could be a good thing. I'm constantly worried — some of the tweets I saw last night were very distressed teenage girls saying, "I love you so much, how could you do this to me? I could never trust you, but I'll totally stick with you." And I'm kind of like, All right, that's co-dependency in a bottle. … But in terms of whether or not people will find me more or less attractive, it's really none of my business if they do. So c'est la vie to that.