Hanna Marin’s New Reality

I think you’re the one who needs a trip to Oz. See if the wizard can find you a heart.

Over the past five seasons, Hanna and her friends have endured hell from several anonymous stalkers. From getting hit with a car, to framing her mother for murder, to framing her for murder, Hanna Marin’s torment at the hands of these psychopaths has been consistently worse than that of her friends.

Back in season one, Hanna was the ditzy popular girl doing everything to fit in, but thankfully, that façade faded shortly after she reunited with her friends. The constant torture took its toll, especially after she was hit by her stalker’s car. From there, she slowly grows into the blunt, loyal friend that we see now.

imageHer loyalty to her friends has always been pure; Her trust in her friends has hardly faltered, even as they went through hell. When she was friends with Mona, she’d drop anything if she was needed, even as she grew close to the other girls once again. It’s no surprise that when she found out Mona was the first –A, she was devastated. Visiting Mona for months in Radley Sanitarium to find answers, to understand why her best friend had done this to her, Hanna’s heart broke and she grew stronger from it. She became fierce and angry due to the incessant stalking and torture.

Even as her boyfriend broke her heart and she was thrown in jail, Hanna remained the strongest of the group. She never lost her will to fight, to stand up against the dreaded monster who hid behind her radioactive text messages. Even as they were kidnapped and thrown in an underground bunker, Hanna’s will still outweighed that of her friends. The anger never faded from her and she sought answers and escape, even when everything had told her to give up and fade away.

She yearned for normal throughout the years of torment. Hanna’s relationship with her mother has, and continues to be, the most invigorating; they would do anything for each other. Hanna even tried to confess to a murder that neither she, nor her mother, committed, but Ashley was being blamed for. Likewise, in the newest episode, “New Guys, New Lies,” Hanna confesses that she destroyed police evidence and Ashley took the further steps to be sure it would never come to light. Their relationship has always been inspiring, though both of them have made some questionable choices (like when Ashley stole money from the bank she worked at).

imageFive years later and Hanna Marin has grown the most out of her friends. Now a well-traveled employee in the fashion industry, Hanna is engaged to her new, incredible fiancé, Jordan. Jordan seems like a great man and their relationship has come across as very mature and stable, something Hanna has always needed. Something to keep her grounded, despite the crazy of her life.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool my best friend, you’re dead freakin’ meat.

They’ve grown apart, but Hanna is willing to sacrifice everything to protect her friends. Still. Like destroying potential evidence to save Aria from being framed as Charlotte’s murderer. Most remarkably, Hanna’s involvement in Spencer’s relationship with her ex, Caleb, is another sign of her incredible growth from the bitchy girl she came off to be in season one. Though Spencer should know it breaks girl code, Hanna encourages her to follow the blossoming affection and see where it heads. She seems truly happy with Jordan, and secure enough to let this newfound romance happen between these two people she loves, and it’s a shame that her engagement will inevitably end. Probably very badly.

Hanna’s growth is one of the few things that Pretty Little Liars has always got right. The show faltered in seasons four and five, but Hanna and her relationship with Aria, Spencer and Emily has never fallen into the pits. Who would’ve thought that Hanna would one day be the honest one of the group? The one who wanted the truth, no matter how horrible, from everyone she cares about, and demands them to be honest to themselves? Out of the girls, Hanna is the only one to willingly own up to her misdeeds, willing to get herself in trouble with the police department, and potentially end her engagement, by confessing what she did?

Hanna Marin has always been my favorite character on Pretty Little Liars, excluding Mona Vanderwaal, who is deliciously badass, and I never thought I could love her more. Five years later and Hanna has become the person she always wanted to be. The person she strived to be throughout the disgusting mess that Charlotte put them through. She worked past what Mona and Charlotte did to her, even forgiving Mona and befriending her again, and used that past to push her forward and away from Rosewood and the person that town made her into.

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