'Pretty Little Liars' season four preview: Keegan Allen on Toby's 'losing it' and the flashback that 'explains the whole show'

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Image Credit: Mathieu Young/ABC Family

When Pretty Little Liars’ fourth season kicks off Tuesday, June 11, we will find the Liars right where we left them — looking shocked at whatever they’ve discovered in Wilden’s trunk. Along with that, the season premiere will also feature the reveal of the Queen of Hearts’ identity. And from there, the rest of the season is shaping up to be full of twists, turns, and threatening text messages. But one thing we can promise for season 4 is a deeper look into Toby’s past. After disappearing for much of the second half of last season, Toby is back and, according to Keegan Allen, it’s his turn to get answers and spiral downward. See what else Allen had to say about season 4:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: When the season 4 premiere begins, where do we find everyone?
KEEGAN ALLEN: We will open up on what is in the trunk. It is very shocking. The girls think that they saw Ali as Red Coat. Toby is still in the woods. He got hit over the head by something or someone, and he finds an insignia on a lighter and you don’t what that is, but we figure it out when we come back, eventually. But there’s a lot of questions that will rise in season four as to what you see is not necessarily what is real or could be real. You never know.

Is there anything exciting fans can look forward to in terms of Toby’s upcoming storylines?
I got my first off-location shoot recently. Toby goes somewhere to find something out. The season really is, at least for Toby, I’ve had the privilege of really digging very deep into this character’s past, finding out so much more. Marlene King is such a brilliant, brilliant writer and developer of stories, plots, twists. She has written my character in such a way that season four is now diving into behind his past. I’ve never really known that much about him. Now I get all those secrets, which are just heart-wrenching.

Is Toby the only one on this trip?
No, there’s a lot of people going off, but he’s the one that goes and finds out something that’s pretty earth-shattering in his world and also pretty earth shattering in Spencer’s world as well I guess.

We’ve seen Toby in the black hoodie, and we’ve seen him tell Spencer he loves her. So is he good?
We can’t forget that he has an axe to grind with these girls. Our show revolves around the fact that there are so many clues. Whatever we shoot, there’s a reason for it. Every single thing is a clue. As far as Toby being good, as far as Toby giving information or doing whatever with “A” in the last season, we can safely fly with that idea of not being too sure about anybody in Rosewood at this time. That’s what I think people watch Pretty Little Liars for. They want to see who cracks next, who’s the betrayer, who did we trust this whole time, who’s under our noses committing these acts?

Do you play him as being in love with Spencer or as being a liar?
The way I’ve always approached this character has been driven from what Marlene tells me in the realm of reality while we’re shooting. The way she explained it to me in the realm of reality that I’m given per episode, they’ll be like, “This is your reality between this time and this time, be free and wander like a child within it.” So that’s my realm of reality. There has been times when I’ve played a scene and they’ll be like, “Yea, you totally love Spencer. You’re with her, and this is all fine.” And then in another realm of reality, they’ll be like, “But this is something that you have to do to destroy her.” Me as the actor, I’m just as confused as the audience sometimes, but when you watch it, it twists under your skin a bit. That’s what makes it fun. You can never really sit comfortably.

What can you tell me about upcoming Toby-Alison flashbacks?
Another wonderful step back into Toby’s past. I would always go into the writers room and be like, “Marlene, tell me about Toby.” Because he dies in Flawless, the book series written by Sara Shepard. And Alloy Entertainment, Warner Brothers, took these books and made this character, took him out of the realm of the dead and made him into a three-year old character that has developed a relationship, a love interest with Spencer, is part of the “A” team now, and all of these new things that are happening in season four that looking on this flashback, it finally shows something that we never would really we’ve seen in the books but we’ve never gotten to experience it in the show and it is pretty remarkable. It’s troubling.

What about the guy who is lying in a morgue somewhere with a fake tattoo to match Toby’s?
My theory is that person was just some random dead dude. Hopefully I can write a memoir when I’m 80 about all of these little secrets.

Will we get any Toby-Caleb bromance action?
Possibly. I can’t confirm anything like that. I have a bromance with Tyler Blackburn. I think he’s great.Tyler will be in summer episodes. He’s going to Ravenswood and possibly could reoccur on both sides of the state of Pennsylvania.

If you’re filming episode six, as of that episode, do you have a definite answer on Red Coat?
Yes. I do. I have definite answers about everything, but then again, my definite answers are provoked by being on the show for years now and having an idea. If someone throws a ball at you, you know where to move. But then again, I always get the piss knocked out of me like, “Oh that was wrong.” I didn’t even know I was “A” until they shot that. And I had all my theories.

Delving more into Toby, will we get a once and for all on why he originally joined the “A” team?
Yea. There’s explanations to everything, especially with Spencer and Toby and all of that. We touch on it. There’s definite answers, but not enough to give you comfort.

Are Spencer and Toby together at this point?
Yea, they’re together. It’s funny I’ve noticed the seasons start out like everything’s okay, and then the glass houses just start shattering. Whereas last season was Spencer losing it, this season, with that relationship, Toby’s kind of losing it, and Spencer’s his rock to lean on.

But he doesn’t get checked into Radley, right?
You don’t know yet. I will tell you that the two characters do frequent Radley. There might be some Radley action.

Will we see Toby in a black hoodie once again?
There’s no telling with this show. I still don’t know if I’m really not part of the “A” team. I know that Mona is now helping the girls, and she’s in a vulnerable spot when we come back. As you see at the very end of the episode, there’s a text, and she’s like, “I didn’t send that. I’m standing right here.” It shows that there’s something bigger out there and it always has been bigger.

Do you know yet who hit you over the back of the head?
I do. I do know who hit me.

So we will know by episode six?
No. You probably won’t know till next year.

Is there a “B” Team forming with Melissa, Shana and Jenna?
I don’t really know that much information about, but I do know that it aids in the story and will blow people’s minds. There’s a lot that really aids to the story. It’s not necessarily called “B” team but there are things in that formula that are very interesting.

Will we get flashbacks pertaining to them?
Possibly.

And Mike is back!
We finally find Mike! It’s one of these things where they open the cellar and he’s like, “Oh my God.” [gasps for air] “Let me out.” He’s been waiting this whole time to get out and he’s anemic, the whole thing. I’m just kidding. Mike’s been just hanging out. We’re like “Where’s Mike?” We all joke about it.

Is he still Aria’s cute little  brother or will he play into this whole thing?
Yea, he’s cute. I don’t really know. He’s a cool kid.

Will we get any more Spoby sex scenes?
I don’t know. That last one was pretty good to a pretty provocative song. I know that I kiss Troian a couple times, so that’s cool. There might be an epic sex scene. I don’t know. I can’t tell you.

Will we get more Toby-Mona interaction?
Maybe. She’s will [the Liars] now. [They're dealing with] a bully that’s nonexistent. There’s not really anywhere to pin this person. And then they’re also dealing with the disappearance of their friend. They still don’t know who killed Alison. That’s another sub story.

Do you still not know that?
No. And the body just keeps showing up in different places and it’s like, “What is going on?”

It’s definitely her body?
It is.

We will see her face?
Well, I don’t know. It’s a body that we assume is Alison.

But you know who Red Coat is at this point?
I do know who Red Coat is. No question in my mind; I know who it is.

Will we get a definite answer in terms of the hand-coming-out-of-the-ground flashback?
Okay, so you get certain teasers in the show throughout the three years … that [flashback] defines the show. That’s the biggest teaser. It trips me out how big that thing is.

Will we see it in the premiere?
No. It’s a big deal flashback. It explains the whole show. It’s one of those things that if they pull back, the whole show is done. It’s so good!

Catch the season four premiere of Pretty Little Liars June 11 at 8 p.m. on ABC Family.

Samantha on Twitter: @samhighfill

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