Pretty Little Liars Wiki
Pretty Little Liars Wiki
Watch your backs. I didn't.

Careful What U Wish 4 is the fourteenth episode in Season 1. This episode aired on January 24th, 2011.



The girls examine the video "A" left for them that illuminates what looks to be the final moments of Alison’s life near the Kissing Rock the night she disappeared. Right after Ian's cameo on the video, he surprises them in person, as he tries to grab a late-night snack from the Hastings' kitchen. The girls all freak out while Ian makes small talk, acting nonchalant, so there's no indication whether he saw his face on the computer screen or not. After he leaves, they decide they need to hand the video over to the police.


At school, the girls are decorating for the school's upcoming dance-a-thon, but take a break to discuss whether they should turn the video into the police. They question "A's" motives, but Emily doesn't care; as far as she is concerned, she doesn't want Toby to go to jail, and this video could prevent that. Aria agrees with Emily and offers to drive Spencer to the police station during their lunch break.

Hanna can't get a job.

Later, Hanna tries to get a job to alleviate the Marins' financial strife. She asks Sean if she can work for his mother as a dental assistant again, but Sean says no, because last time she threatened a kid with a drill bit for aiming his spit at her. Sean is suspicious of why she needs money and can't get it from her mother, so she makes up an excuse about wanting to save up for some expensive earrings. She tries to get a job with a local store clark, who is also a family friend, and finds out just how strapped their situation is when the woman lets her know that her mother owes their store money. Hanna offers to pay off the debt, but the woman says that Hanna alone couldn't pay off the debt, "there are not enough days in the week." Just then, "A" sends Hanna a text offering her money in exchange for a "job" - no doubt shady dealings.


Next, Ella meets up with Aria in the gymnasium, bringing along Simone, who used to be Aria's babysitter and is now her role model, a "published author" living in New York City. Just like Aria's dream future! Aria's mom has invited Simone to speak to her English class and runs over to Ezra to offer him Simone's services, in more ways than one. Simone offers Aria some career advice. Ella returns to tell Simone she'll be speaking to Ezra's class and will then be meeting him for a coffee date. Aria is predictably awkward about the whole thing.


We then see Emily on the phone, arguing with Maya's guards at her rehab center, True North. The guards won't allow her to speak to her girlfriend. Apparently, she can only receive calls from her mother and father. So, Hanna offers up the phone-hacking services of a new kid with tech-cred, who can wire Emily's phone to make it seem that she is one of the St. Germains when she calls Maya.

Spencer's laptop is missing!

At lunch, the girls are getting ready to head to the police station when they realize that Spencer's laptop is missing, despite the fact that it has been in her bag, plastered to her side all day, save when she kept it in her gym locker. A notebook seems to have been swapped with her bag, camouflaging the weight difference. The girls deduce that it must have been taken when she left it in her gym locker, which Ian has access to since he is an athletic coach.


Aria shows up at Ezra's unannounced with coffee. It turns out he was reading one of Simone's short stories before meeting with her for coffee. Aria gets jealous, but Ezra points out that her mother was being insistent, and he needs to pretend he's single. Ezra is ready to leave, but in a desperate move, Aria offers to stay to read and clean out the refrigerator, but he turns her down, telling her to go. He gives her a kiss, and they leave separately as a precaution not to be seen.


Next, Ian is in the Hastings' kitchen making himself a sandwich when Spencer comes in to ask him if he's seen her laptop. He claims he hasn't seen it and tells Spencer he'll be at the dance that night, having been asked to chaperone. Then he makes cryptic comments about people gossiping in a small town. When she inquires about it, he just says they're living under the same roof and they should try to be a family.


That night, Spencer and Hanna wait in the coat check line at the dance, and Hanna shows off her hip flask. Meanwhile, Emily watches Ian lock his suspicious briefcase away in his desk drawer. Ian checks his coat with his keys in the pocket, and the girls begin to hatch a plan to get the keys and get into his desk, where they think Spencer's laptop is clearly hidden. Hanna wonders if he has already erased the video, but Spencer says that if he did, it would indicate definite guilt and that they should inform the police.


It turns out that Aria's parents are both chaperoning the dance as well, and they exchange awkward pleasantries. Meanwhile, Simone wanders over to Aria and jokingly begs her not to request a Backstreet Boys song. She explains that she has come to see Ezra, and Simone can sense that Aria might not want her there.


Caleb shows up with Emily's newly souped-up phone, and Hanna calls him out for overcharging poor Emily. They exchange words about not knowing the first thing about Hanna, and he leaves. Hanna then gets a text from "A" telling her to dance with dorky Lucas for $200 per dance.


Hanna is dancing with Sean, but tells him she should dance with poor, lonely Lucas, who reminds her so much of herself in her own dork days. Sean is not happy, and claims that Hanna was different than Lucas, because she was sweet, while Lucas seems deserving of a beating. He then tells her if she wants to perform charity she should save a whale... But Sean leaves, and Hanna convinces Lucas to dance with her.


Outside, Emily finishes up a conversation with Maya, sounding a bit disappointed. Spencer asks her what's wrong, and Emily says she thinks Maya has moved on.


Meanwhile, Ezra is chatting with Simone about Prague and absinthe and other adult subjects. They discuss their previous travels in Europe. Aria, totally jealous of how much the two have in common, interrupts their conversation and is promptly embarrassed when her former babysitter brings up her stuffed Cookie Monster from childhood.


Aria retrieves Ian's keys from his coat and leaves, passing them along to Spencer. Meanwhile, Hanna convinces Lucas to dance with her for just one more song, which happens to be a slow one, and he grows hopeful of Hanna's newfound interest in him.


Aria makes some comments to her mother about Simone and Ezra, but luckily her mom gets the wrong idea and thinks Aria is jealous that Simone is going after Ezra instead of spending time with her. Her mom unwittingly makes a comment about how it's hard to find the right guy, and sometimes, you have to go for it. She pats her on the head and says someday she'll understand.

Dancing With Lucas

Hanna then leaves Lucas on the dance floor when an angered Sean confronts Hanna about the fact that "one dance" with Lucas has turned into five. Sean is unforgiving of Hanna's unceremonious treatment of him and asks Hanna if she brought him to the dance just to diss him. Hanna then gets a text from "A" upping her payrate to $500 a dance. Any chance of Hanna dancing with Sean again that night, or possibly ever again, is now gone. She returns for another dance with Lucas, discreetly crying on his shoulder as they sway.


Meanwhile, Spencer uses the swiped keys to break into Ian's office. As she's trying to crack his locked desk drawers, bad boy Caleb inauspiciously shows up and threatens to expose her unless she pays him off.


Back on the dance floor, Byron brings his estranged wife a drink, and their song starts playing, so they decide to dance. He tries to convince her that they should take Simone and the kids out for dinner, but she shoots his proposal not wanting to complicate their tenuous relationship.


Later, Aria sees Ezra and Simone together again, this time on the dance floor, and jealousy takes over. She marches up to them and demands, "We have to talk." Spencer sees what is happening and intervenes, asking Mr. Fitz to dance, giving Aria a chance to cool off.


Meanwhile, after her terse call with Maya, Emily finds herself drinking from Hanna's stolen hip flask and nearly causes an accusatory scene with Ian, about his murdering Alison. Spencer covers up, claiming her accusation was referring to their kiss, but this too angers Ian, who had hoped nobody else knew that damning secret. Aria almost has a confrontation of her own - with Ezra over the attention he is paying Simone, but a quick-thinking Spencer diffuses the situation by asking her teacher to dance.


Spencer and Hanna get the still wasted Emily outside and decide they'll all crash at Spencer's that night, so Emily doesn't have to deal with her mother, and Spencer doesn't have to be alone with Ian lurking about. Lucas approaches Hanna and offers her a ride home, but Hanna insists her friends need her. After Lucas walks off, Hanna finds that "A" did not disappoint; she pulls her scarf out of her coat pocket and a fat wad of cash falls out onto the ground. Before they leave, drunk-honest Emily accuses Hanna of pulling an Alison, leading a boy on, only to break his heart; Hanna is guilt-ridden.


Outside, in the parking lot, Aria says that Ezra would be better off with Simone, who is smart, pretty, and accomplished, and sheds a tear. Ezra replies, saying that he is in love with someone already, meaning Aria. He moves in to kiss her, but backs up, knowing that anybody could see them in the school parking lot.


At Spencer's home, Hanna prevents Emily from drunk-dialing Maya and puts her to bed. Emily starts to apologize, but Hanna says she was right, and Hanna feels bad for leading Lucas on, so insensitively. But Emily falls asleep, missing Hanna's admission; Hanna removes her shoes and pulls the covers over Emily.

Videos are gone, but this is new.

When she goes downstairs, Hanna discovers that Spencer's laptop has reappeared on the coffee table under some newspaper with the incriminating video erased and a photo of Alison the night she disappeared in its stead. There is a message courtesy of "A" to accompany the pixels. The picture shows Alison walking through Spencer's backyard, with a shadow in tow; it seems to have been photographed from the perspective of the DiLaurentis house. Hanna notices the shadow behind Alison and asks Spencer if she knows who it is. Spencer claims not to know, despite looking like she does.


The episode ends with Ella working the coat check at the end of the night. She returns a black jacket and pair of black leather gloves to someone, smiling sweetly as she bids this person good night.


  • Spencer asks Mr. Fitz to dance in this episode to distract him from Aria's impending meltdown. Later, in Season 2, Ella suspects Mr. Fitz is having an affair with Spencer. Remembering this incident would strengthen her belief.
  • In the video of Alison at the kissing rock, we can clearly see her "Alison" bracelet on her wrist when she falls. However, in this episode, the sleeve of Toby's sweater covers up the bracelet.


  • This episode title is the SMS version of "careful what you wish for," the phrase that warns that one wants may not be all it's cracked up to be. The punchline that follows is "for it may just come true."

Main Cast

Supporting Cast


  • Briana Bunch as Student (uncredited)
  • Jeff Larson (VI) as Student (uncredited)

Featured Music

  •  "Counting Sleep" by Trent Dabbs (Spencer tells Aria about Ian's coat-check number; Hanna asks Sean if she could have one dance with Lucas; Spencer overhears Emily talking on the phone with Maya and asks if she is okay) 
  •  "Your Kind of Girl" by Jules Larson (Sean and Hanna talk at school and prepare for the dance-a-thon. Aria's mom and Simone walk over to talk to Aria and Ella talks to Ezra.) 
  •  "Love the Nite Away" by DJ Kaos (Hanna and Spencer are in line for the dance and Emily shows up and sees Ian putting his bag in his office desk. Spencer, Emily and Aria all talk at the dance.) 
  •  "Kids" by Miss TK & The Revenge (Ella and Byron talk in the hallway during the dance.) 
  •  "Happy House" by The Juan Maclean (Emily finds the flask in Hanna's purse and Aria sees Ezra and Simone talking and becomes jealous. Hanna walks outside and talks to a drunk Emily.) 
  •  "No One is to Blame" by Howard Jones (Byron asks Ella to dance during the high school fundraiser.) 
  •  "Your Love" by Fay Wolf (Spencer walks back after dancing with Ezra at the dance. Also when Sean breaks up with Hanna and Lucas dances with her to console her. Finally Aria and Spencer find Emily, who has had too much to drink) 
  •   "When I'm Small" by Phantogram (Simone walks up to talk to Aria while she is requesting a song. Hanna and Spencer look around and see Ian and Hanna does some investigating)
  •  "Fire Eyes" by Canyons (Hanna asks if Caleb has Emily's phone; Emily gives Caleb money while Hanna confronts Caleb about how much he charged Emily) 
  •   "Upside Down" by Garrison Starr (Hanna convinces Lucas for another dance and Aria talks to Ella about Ezra. Sean and Hanna have an arguement.) 
  •   "Come to Nothing" by Car Stereo Wars (Hanna asks Susan for a job at the store.) 


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Careful What U Wish 4 has a photo gallery.

Memorable Quotes

Hanna [about Emily]: If her mom finds out it was my flask, I’m gonna be feeding the bears with Maya.

Spencer: I hear Rosewood P.D. is hiring.
Hanna: Well, I do have experience with them — just the wrong kind.

Emily [about Maya]: Who told you it was rehab?
Caleb: A nice cushy town like this, I’m guessing rehab is the new boarding school.

Caleb [to Spencer]: What’s complicated? I don’t live in a cave; I get it. The rich girls steal, the pretty girls lie, the smart girls play dumb, and the dumb girls spend their days trying to be all of the above.

Sean: Hanna, you threatened a kid with a drill bit.
Hanna: But he aimed at me for rinse-and-spit!

Caleb: You want speedy delivery? Call Best Buy.
Emily: What if I gave you 40 more bucks? Would that make it happen any faster?
Caleb: Let me put it this way. ... Yes.

Sean [about Lucas]: This kid’s looking to get bitch-slapped every time he opens his mouth.
Hanna: Okay, it’s just a dance.
Sean: You want to pick a charity? Save a whale.

Spencer: Mr. Fitz, will you dance with me?
Mr. Fitz: What?
Spencer: We're allowed. Come on.

Spencer [to Aria]: Five more seconds and you would’ve ended up on YouTube.

Hanna [to Emily]: Friends don't let friends dial drunk.