|This article is about Byron Montgomery, a TV series character. You may be looking for Byron Montgomery (Book Character).|
|“||Sometimes the truth does more harm than good.||”|
— Byron to Aria
Byron Montgomery is the father of Aria and Mike Montgomery and is the husband of Ella Montgomery. Byron is a professor and a department chair at Hollis College who was a main character (1-3) and a special guest character from (4-present). He is portrayed by Chad Lowe.
Aria and Alison became aware of Byron's infidelity after seeing him and Meredith in the back of his car, but Ella was not. In an awful parenting move, Byron persuaded Aria to keep his extramarital affair a secret from the rest of the family.
After Alison's disappearance, Byron and his family left for Iceland on sabbatical. When they return, Aria becomes suspicious that he is seeing Meredith again. Things are made worse when Meredith befriends an unsuspecting Ella. Ella eventually finds out about Byron's affair through a letter from "A". Byron and Ella have a big fight about who should move out of the house, as both need some space. In the end, Ella moves out into an apartment above her art studio. Byron pursues a relationship with Meredith before her mental state gets the best of her and she leaves to receive treatment.
Byron manages the finances and kids' schedules with some difficulty. Many episodes show him ordering take-out or seemingly handling all the bills of the house. Many times, he asks Aria to take Mike to lacrosse practice or other school activities.
Pilot Byron is first seen asking Mike Montgomery if he's going to lacrosse practice. After Ella Montgomery and Mike go into the basement he asks Aria Montgomery how's she's holding up. Aria tells him that she is still keeping his secret but Byron counters saying he was talking about Alison and that coming back must bring up a lot of bad memories.Byron drops Aria and Mike to their first day back at school. Mike leaves and he tells Aria to wait. He tells Aria how he loves Ella and made one mistake that shall not be repeated. A flashback shows him kissing Meredith At the Montgomery house, Ella and Byron are making progress on unpacking. They discuss their adjustment back to Rosewood, and Byron reveals how nervous he is to lose the closeness he had with her in Iceland. Ella tells him that they were forced to bond because they didn't know anyone else there. He tells her that he misses it because things can get in the way. Ella questions this and he tries to avoid the question but she is persistent. He lies and says how he can get obsessed with work not completely revealing what he is actually afraid of. Oblivious to the nuance, Ella agrees that the adjustment is hard, considering that they once again live near the DiLaurentis' house, and driving past it evokes bad memories. They declare their commitment to one another and the two embrace over a glass of wine. The Jenna Thing Byron comes downstairs and tells Aria and Ella that he'll be working late that night. When Ella asks why he tells her he has a lot of catching up to do after being gone a year. Aria tells him that his family should come first then she leaves. When Ella questions him about Aria's behavior he says she's just being a teenager. He remains at home when Ella and Mike go to bring takeout for dinner. Aria arrives home and he tells her that Ella is starting to get suspicious. Aria asks him if he loved Meredith and he tells her he had very strong feelings for her which he acted upon. He tells her she's too young to understand. Ella and Mike come home and Byron acts normally. To Kill a Mocking Girl Byron, Ella, and Aria are out having breakfast. Aria talks about the book she's reading at school "To Kill a Mockingbird." Byron tells her she should read the author's biography next and that he has a copy in his office. He asks Aria if she likes her new English Teacher and she says he's okay. Ella goes inside to order more food. While he's talking with Aria Meredith shows up seeking "a recommendation." Byron introduces her to Aria and she asks Byron if he received her message. After chatting with Byron she tries to make conversation with Aria but Aria coldly cuts her short. She smiles intensely at Byron and he smiles back. Later at the opening, Ella and Byron are seen talking and laughing with the people present. Reality Bites Me After Ella finds out about his affair, they argue about the possibility of him moving out. Ella says she doesn't want to be the bad mother who puts out the kids' father and forced to deal with their confusion alone. When Aria makes her presence known Byron wishes her good luck in her test then leaves. He later comes clean to Ella about the affair with Meredith and him asking Aria to keep it a secret from her. Ella becomes very angry even breaking a family picture. The Perfect Storm He becomes chummy with Ashley and comes over to use her toaster when his electricity fails. He also comes to use her fax in order to send out Mike's permission slip, which is due that day. There, he unloads his difficulty with meeting the challenges of being a single parent, and Ashley empathizes. Their relationship could have romantic potential, but it seems mostly friendly. After Ashley takes money from Mrs. Potter's safe deposit box, Byron approaches her in her car asking her for a ride home. She curtly turns him down, claiming that she is in a rush, but the real reason becomes apparent when her open purse stuffed with cash comes into view.
Later, when Ella's car breaks down, thanks to Caleb's messing with it, Ella is frustrated and calls Byron, since she cannot call AAA, as all their points are used up. The encounter threatens to lead to a fight until Byron offers her a ride. He drives her all the way to the gallery, but by the time they arrive, their relationship has been so much improved that Ella opts for a date with her husband instead.
Ella shares with Byron her positive opinion of Mr. Fitz, given his professional response to the Mr. McCullers fiasco. As a result, despite that things are starting to pick up with the two, Byron begins to jealously suspects Mr. Fitz of wooing his wife. He, therefore, misinterprets Ella's plans to attend a book event with Ezra, not realizing that the invitation is not exclusive; it includes the other English teachers as well.
At his parent-teacher meeting for Aria, he is judgmental and cold towards a confused Ezra, a fact that Aria is even more bewildered about. In an attempt to have her father appreciate her secret boyfriend, she argues with her father about his opinion. It is only when Aria fills him in on the fact that Ella's date with Ezra is not exclusive to her that he stops suspecting that Ella has a crush on Ezra. He softens, and feeling regret, calls Mr. Fitz to go out for drinks and talk. There, they discuss Aria again, and Byron is so nice he even encourages Ezra to spend more time on his work and less time on teaching by considering a position as a college professor.
With the Ezra jealousy component no longer a concern, Ella and Byron's relationship starts repairing itself, but Ella is reluctant to share the good news with her children, for fear of letting them think that everything is completely better, when she is not sure how she feels exactly. So, one night Byron sneaks out of the house to meet Ella without telling the children, having agreed to keep things under wraps for now. Aria, terrified that her father is having an extramarital affair again, follows him, only to find her parents having an intra marital affair!
When Byron learns that Aria has a secret relationship with a boy, he becomes insecure, leading him to pry in Aria's room, almost outing the truth, but Ella stops him in an argument, overheard by Mike, their son. They disagree as to whether it's ever okay to search your children's room behind their backs. Aria and Mike had agreed to make dinner for the parents as a way to a family date night, but due to the argument, Ella cancels, leaving the three to eat dinner alone.
It's Alive Byron was with the other parents as they tell the Liars that they believe that the girls need to see a therapist. He later talks to Aria along with Ella about the girls' visit with Dr. Sullivan He and Ella tell Aria that she needs to stop seeing her friends temporarily. Ella moves back in with Byron, and Byron is relieved of some of the recent parenting stress. He is somewhat concerned about his son's, Mike, recent behavior, but doesn't make much of it when Aria falsely denies noticing it. After Mike's arrest, Ella and Byron have two different approaches to dealing with their son. Ella wants to give Mike space until he is open to talking, but Byron calls for a tougher approach, wanting to force him to return to school. After seeing Mike sleeping in his room with the door locked, Byron privately reveals to Ella later that Mike had reminded him of his brother Scott when he was younger before his life fell apart. Ella rejects the comparison, but Byron seems shaken. I Must Confess Byron is keen on medication as a treatment for his son's depression, but Ella insists on verbal therapy, leaving the two at an impasse. The First Secret In the prequel episode, Aria visits her father's office at Hollis College. She is about to leave a note for her father, when she sees Meredith lying on the couch of her father's office, lazily reading a book. When Byron returns to his office, he expresses his surprise at seeing Meredith there but acts coolly. Aria attributes Meredith's presence in his office to her father being so cool in the eyes of his students, and Byron plays along. Later, Aria and Alison discover Byron and Meredith making out in his car, showing that the discovery had been made just before Halloween. Byron is happy until he spots his daughter and her crestfallen face. When Aria returns home, Byron tells her that he tried to call her all day, though she hadn't picked up for obvious reasons. Ella and Mike are not home, probably because Byron had wanted to prevent Aria from informing her mother before he could convince her not to. He announces that Meredith is dropping his class, implying that their relationship is ending. He then asks Aria to lie about it to her mother, because it’s over now, and telling her would make it worse. “I don’t think I can ever forgive you,” Aria squeaks. In turn, Byron has the decency to tell Aria that he respects whatever decision she ultimately make, though he obviously doesn't want her to tell Ella. Aria starts crying in her room, and Byron stands in the doorway, crying silent tears himself. Through Many Dangers, Toils, and Snares Byron visits Ezra in his office. He suggests they combine their English classes one day to view a film. Ezra likes the idea. Byron also says they should finish the dinner they started (in Surface Tension) and also the bottle of scotch Ezra brought. He gets a text and mentions how he has had to deal with so many lawyers lately, referring to Aria's arrest. Ezra is sympathetic and asks how things have been. He says he knows Aria well enough to know that Aria would never hurt Ella or Byron on purpose. Byron says no one ever starts out intending to hurt anyone. The next day, Ezra Fitz stands in the Montgomery's living room and confesses to being in love with his daughter. Byron and Ella are shocked and angry. Byron orders Ezra to leave. Mike, who is standing nearby, steps in and hits Ezra, in an effort to prevent Byron from doing it first. Ella and Byron discuss what just transpired. Byron accuses Ella of knowing about this. She explains she thought she knew about Ezra and Spencer Hastings, but never gave him the chance to deny it. Byron declares the man is finished and Ella supposes he is right, but they have to consider what Aria may have been thinking when she got involved with Ezra, at a confusing time when she was still keeping the secret of her father's affair. Aria comes downstairs and asks them not to make a decision tonight, to consider for a moment that their relationship is real. They don't seem to accept this possibility and send her back upstairs. A Hot Piece of A Byron sees Aria in the hall and insists she changes her clothes. He says they are inappropriate for school. Incredulous, Aria asks since when has she had a dress code. Byron responds since they have learned who she may be dressing for. Ella steps in before a full-blown argument can erupt. Byron knocks on Ezra's door that evening. He enters and remarks that he and Ella went to a party in this building years ago. He tells Ezra he knows navigating certain student-teacher relationships can be tricky and admits to making his own bad choices, pointing out that they were not with a minor. He asks for Ezra's word that he will not see Aria again, but Ezra doesn't give it to him. Instead, he thanks him for helping him get the job at Hollis which enabled him to continue his relationship with Aria. Byron spies the rumpled sheets on Ezra's bed behind him and asks if he and Aria spend time at his apartment. Byron's demeanor changes from business-like to angry. Before Ezra can answer, Byron, threatens him about going to the police and leaves. Ella and Byron argue over what to do about the situation with Aria and Ezra. She wishes he hadn't gone to speak with him without her. She tells Byron that they cannot go to the police, much as they would like to because it would ruin Aria's reputation. She is already considered a liar by many in town after the bell-tower incident and the recent arrest. They have to do whatever they can to protect their daughter. Byron can't argue with that. Byron walks with Ella and Aria toward a restaurant in town for dinner, but stop short when they see Ezra through the window dining alone. Byron insists they go somewhere else, calling out to Aria that they are leaving, then bickers with Ella about their earlier conversation. They make plans for them all to have dinner one day soon so Holden and Aria can catch up. Father Knows Best Aria and Bryon go to the father-daughter dance. It is obvious that it has been areoccurring event for the two for a long time but due to the tense relationship between them (since Byron learned about Aria's secret affair with Ezra) the mood is dim. Aria is clearly still frustrated with her father but Byron tries to lighten the atmosphere by reminiscing about when Aria was a little girl. After dancing and getting drinks, Byron gets in line for a Father-Daughter picture and is very obviously hurt and disappointed when Aria tells him that she is going to leave early and that she doesn't want to take a picture. He reminds her of how they'd taken a picture every year but Aria tells him that she isn't a little girl anymore and leaves in this heartbreaking scene.
Byron and Ella have separated sometime over the 5 months between the end of Season 2 and beginning of Season 3, partially due to his inability to accept Ezra as Aria's boyfriend. He (Byron) starts dating his former student Meredith again. This Is A Dark Ride The Liars discover that Byron was with Alison the Night she was killed because Alison was blackmailing him about the affair he had with Meredith. That night, he got Ella to drink wine and pass out, and he went to meet with Ali. Misery Loves Company It is further revealed in a flashback that when he left, Ali was supposedly unharmed, so he did not kill her.
Gamma Zeta Die! Byron is briefly mentioned by Mike and Aria during their heated argument once Aria comes home. Later in the episode, Aria comes home to Byron working diligently on something at his desk where they begin a conversation about the wellbeing of Ella and Aria turns the conversation into her persuading Byron to convince Ella to go to Europe with Zack. Aria ends up in tears as she tells Byron that Ella still values his opinion. Later, Ella and Byron are seen having coffee together where he begins discussing that she doesn't look bad considering her condition and ends up convincing her to go to Europe with Zack. The entire Montgomery family is seen in the living room together towards the end of the episode where Ella and Byron talk to Mike and he softens up to the idea of Ella leaving though it is evident that he is reluctant to say bye to his mother. Crash and Burn, Girl! Byron is seen pacing his house as he hangs up with somebody on the phone. Aria walks in and sets down her coat as he questions her of her brother's whereabouts and the issue with Connor and his car. Aria informs him of when she rejected Connor and the rumor that he (Connor) had started. Byron questions why Connor would have started this rumor and Aria tells him that it was most likely brought upon by her and Ezra's relationship. Byron then grabs his coat and goes to find Mike. Byron walks out of Vice Principal Hackett's office and sees Aria and Ezra immersed in a conversation that they both break and put their attention on him. Aria and Ezra both leave upon Byron's request and he then proceeds to go back into the office. A is for Answers Byron is briefly mentioned by Alison as she recaps the night she disappeared.
Season 4 (3/24)
Season 7 (1/20)
Season 5 (2/25)
Season 6 (5/20)
- In the books, Byron marries Meredith and gets her pregnant. Later, they have a daughter named Lola. In the show, Byron just dates Meredith and breaks up with her because she is psychotic and drugged Aria.
- In the books, Ali and Byron never saw each other the night she went missing and she never blackmailed Byron.
- Alison and Aria never trashed his office after finding out about his affair with Meredith.
- Byron separates from Ella and married Meredith in the book, in the show, he and Ella got back together until they finally divorced a year later.
- In the books, Byron is an Art History professor, while in the show he's an English professor.
Byron [about Ezra]: He does that little boyish smile thing a little too much, but I figure it must work for him.
Aria: This place is out-of-control.
Byron: Yeah, well, I guess we’re all going to have to just pitch in a little bit more around here. Maybe we could take turns — we could each choose a night to, uh, cook, and then do the laundry, and then pay the bills, and then help your brother with his homework, and then find time to grade papers and write lectures and go to PTA meetings and...
Aria: Dad! How much coffee have you had?
Byron [to Ezra]: You're never seeing Aria again. Ever. And I will make sure the police see to that.
Byron: I don't want to leave.
Ella: I don't want you to stay.
Ella: Second guessing her every move is starting to feel a little extreme.
Byron: No, Dating your English teacher is extreme.
Byron [to Ezra]: I have been teaching for 17 years. I know how tricky it can be to navigate some teacher/student relationships.
Byron [to Ezra]: I have made some bad choices, that I later regretted
Byron: She asked me for space.
Aria: She moved out. How much more space does she need?