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Marlene King Answers ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Summer Finale Burning Questions: Who’s Really Dead?

SPOILER ALERT: Do not read ahead, if you have not watched the “Pretty Little Liars” Season 7 summer finale, which aired on August 30.

Pretty Little Liars” is known for its crazy cliffhangers, and the Season 7 summer finale was no exception, going out with a bang — literally.

Spencer (Troian Bellisario) was shot by Jenna (Tammin Sursok), and that was the least surprising part of her storyline. Turns out, Mary Drake’s (Andrea Parker) other secret child is Spencer. Or at least, Mary Drake claims to be Spencer’s mother.

“That was a huge revelation not just for Spencer, but for the Pretty Little Liars and the show and the storyline,” creator Marlene King told Variety and reporters on a conference call this morning, seemingly confirming that Mary Drake truly is Spencer’s mother. “It’s a driving engine of Spencer’s emotional story as we come back in April.”

While Spencer’s fate remains to be seen, someone in Rosewood is definitely dead. Noel Kahn (Brant Daugherty) was killed by an ax accident that left him decapitated, marking quite possibly the most gruesome death in “PLL” history.

“It was really a lot of special effects. He played down on the floor and then digitally, we cut off his head,” King explains of the bloody scene.

Toby (Keegan Allen) was also seen in a not-so-alive state of mind, as his seemingly unconscious body was found bloody, alongside Yvonne (Kara Royster), in a car accident. So, should viewers be worried that Rosewood’s favorite police officer could be dead?

“People know I love the character of Toby so you can read into that what you want to read into that,” King teases about Toby’s fate. “He’s one of my favorites on the show. It would be hard for me to make that phone call to him.”

Also in last night’s episode, Ali (Sasha Pieterse) revealed that she’s pregnant and then she made out with Emily (Shay Mitchell), bringing hope to all #Emison fans. #Haleb also got back together with Hanna (Ashley Benson) and Caleb (Tyler Blackburn) hooking up in a streamy scene. But, #Ezria fans may have lost hope, as he reunited with Nicole who was revealed to be alive. The finale wrapped up with Jenna in the back of A.D.’s van, leaving fans still wondering who the big baddie is.

Here, Marlene King breaks down the summer finale’s biggest burning questions.

How did Brant Daugherty react when you told him he was being killed off — and getting his head chopped off?

I’m the person who makes the phone call to the person… Brant Daugherty was a total trooper about it because I did preface it by saying, “It’s going to be the most spectacular death.”

Spencer was shot. There are only 10 episodes left, so if she were dead, it wouldn’t be totally crazy to see her just in flashbacks. Will she make it out alive?

Everybody is subject to their demise… “A” is the equal opportunity killer so everybody is subject to their demise and it’s possible we’ll see her in flashbacks.

Toby and Yvonne were in a car crash, so they could also be dead. Is there something more to the car crash?

There was definitely nothing nefarious going on there. The car crash is just saying nobody really does ever leave Rosewood… it’s really more of a metaphor than anything else.

There will be a wedding in Season 7B — whose wedding is it?

I’ll give you a big spoiler. There will be more than one wedding… maybe more.

When will we find out who A.D. is?

When A.D. is revealed… I can’t tell you what it is without giving up who A.D. is.

We saw at the end of the episode that apparently Jenna does not know who A.D. is. Has she been working solo or with A.D.?

She knows A.D. exists and she is anonymously working for A.D. In ways that we find out moving forward, a few other people on our show are as well.

Andrea Parker actually looks so much like Spencer. Did you cast her knowing that she would always be Spencer’s mother?

We did not cast Andrea with that in mind, but once Andrea knew that she was going to play Mary Drake, she really did a lot of homework and started studying Spencer. She chose her hair color… she morphed into Mary Drake.

Now that we know that Mary Drake is Spencer’s mother, will we find out perhaps a different truth about her father? And what about Charlotte’s father?

We will definitely follow through on both of those storylines. We will find out who Charlotte’s father is, and we’ll find out how Spencer came to be and her sort of entire family dynamic. The storyline came from the books. We have a lot of fun in the final season circling back to Sara’s [books].

Any chance Melissa Hastings (Torrey DeVitto) will return for the last 10 episodes?

We talk about it all the time. She’s on “Chicago Med” and very unavailable to us. As much as we talk about it, I’m still hoping to get her into the finale, but we haven’t figured out how to do it just yet. But I hope she reads this and talks to her producers and helps me!

Will Wren (Julian Morris) be back in the final 10 episodes?

We’ll see him in more than one episode, which is fantastic. I think it’s just always fun to see Wren. He has some great scenes. When I first sat down to talk to Julian, he had never had a scene with Ezra… so that was really the originator of the first scene we’ll see him in.

Ali is pregnant. Will there be a time jump going into the last 10 episodes so she will be super pregnant?

Ali will not be super pregnant — she’ll just be a little more pregnant than she was last night.

Will her pregnancy storyline really be explored in 7B?

Yes. Absolutely. For both Alison and her friends — especially Emily.

Speaking of Emily, there was a major Emison moment last night. But what about Paige?

Paige is not gone for good. This is our season of homecomings and full circle moments. These last 10 episodes really reflect the full-circle-ness of the show and where we hope to go in these final 10 and having that triangle play out felt very appropriate for us as storytellers.

Brant Daugherty, aka Noel, stopped by Variety to talk about his gruesome on-screen death, A.D.’s identity, shipping Eminson and more. Watch the Facebook Live below:

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