Do you ever sit back and think, "man, I wish I were rich enough to
purchase a secret underground bunker in a state park and completely
furnish it with a state-of-the-art security system and a home movie
theater?" Oh, no? Well, that's what Charles, aka Big A, on Pretty Little
Liars once thought, and then that's what he did. He built his own secret
lair, an "A Cave," if you will, and he's been living there for quite some
time — my guess, probably close to three years, since that's how long Sara Harvey has been missing. Charles, it seems, needs a major intervention, or at least needs to fill viewers in on how he manages to have to so much money. Since I doubt he's going to hand over the documents himself, let's go ahead and estimate Charles' net worth. We need to talk about the money he's blowing on PLL to live out his crazy A lifestyle.
Until now, I hadn't really stopped to think about A's money situation. Sure, it's been in the back of my mind for the last few seasons, but never at the forefront, because it never seemed like that big a deal. Oh, A rented out a room at a hotel, and purchased an all-black wardrobe? That's not too crazy. What's a cheap room at a motel, $75-ish a night? Or: A bought a brand new black hoodie from Target? That's what, maybe $15? Those aren't big numbers.
But now, thinking about the fact that he's got those hotel rooms, and that all-black wardrobe, and the secret bunker he's built to resemble the Liar's bedrooms, it's like, Charles. We need to talk about this guy's spending habits, especially everything he paid for in the Season 6 premiere, "Game on Charles." Exactly how much money are we looking at? Let's take a look.
I once moved into a new apartment that needed an new sprinkler system installed. I had to pay for it. It was ridiculously expensive, setting myself and my roommate back just under $2,000. Currently, HomeAdvisor.com estimates that a new sprinkler system costs an average of $2,472 — and that's just for a regular-sized home, not an underground bunker.
You can purchase an antique popcorn machine off of Amazon for $250 (originally $560). At least it's available for Prime, so it ships free. Amazon also sells 8.0 oz bags of kernels for $36.
Old School Film Projector
I majored in film, and I've had to deal with IRL film more times than I'd like to count, but offhand, no, I don't know what size film Charles is using. I'm going to guess 16mm, which is usually standard, but it might be 8mm. You can buy antique-looking film projects from Walmart (who knew?) but to get one that works, you have to turn to eBay. They're not wildly expensive, but expect to pay around $150 to guarantee a working one.
Prom Dresses x 5
I'll admit it's been a while since I've been to a prom. I remember paying around $100-ish for my dress about eight years ago (let's not talk about it). However, my dress was black and plain. The Liars are wearing some pretty intricate dresses. WornOnTV.net actually found some of the exact matches.
The details: Hanna's red plunging-neckline dress retails for $650. Emily's blue number is $698. Mona's pink princess dress is a whopping $1,150. And to think they were DESTROYED in the RAIN.
Aria and Spencer's were custom-made by designer Mandi Line, so they're priceless.
Personalized GPS System
Most new cars come with GPS devices built into them. In "Game On Charles," Ali hits the button for OnStar. An OnStar subscription runs $34.99 a month/$349.90 a year. They do not cover personalized GPS systems with a terrifying, yet soothing, female voice on the other end. I'm going to assume that something like that costs extra, and then there's the technology to rewire your OnStar system, too. Let's go with a flat $500.
Security Monitoring System
A has one in his lair. We've also see him use it in his portable A locations, too. That means computer monitors, security cameras, and wireless internet access, too, plus, all the other gadgets, whistles, and bells needed to keep track of the Liars.
Pottery Barn sells it for $99, which is a great bargain, so I'm going to go buy at least six of them. Take that, Charles.
You might not be thinking about food, but the Liars have to eat. Having been locked up, Sara has needed to be fed for almost two years. While I doubt A is ordering in pizza for her every night, there has to at least be bread, butter, and water. Let's do a rough estimate of $200 a week to keep her alive. I like to think that Charles has some heart to feed her a variety of prison food.
Charles only needs two, for him and Mona. And thanks for making me Google gas masks, Charles, because now I'm totally being tracked by the government.
Also, who knew there were so many different kinds of gas masks? I didn't want to click around too much, but it seemed that the best one went for $169.
Guess what, Charles? You can't just waltz into a state park and set up shop. You cannot rent out space in a state park for your own evil-doing. So, how much of a fine are we looking at?
While there's no set penalty for illegally building an A bunker on state property (but now PA is going to rethink that), there are laws against building cabins without proper approval, codes, and permission. Charles is basically looking at all of those, and the starting fine is $100. And that's for building a cabin. He built a BUNKER.
Now, Let's Add It All Up
With a little leeway, I get $10,500. And that's just for "Game On Charles." That's not accounting for the fact that he's clearly had this bunker for some time — like, what is his electricity bill? A billion dollars?!
This is also not including everything else he's ever owned and used before (remember when A had a mobile home as his lair?). Basically, Charles has an unlimited income that he's using for whatever the heck he pleases. For him, money is no object.
But why? Why does Charles have unlimited money? The show needs to explain this trust fund for us. Did he rob a bank? Did he invest in Google really early on? Is there an off-shore account we need to talk about? This is ridiculous.
Images: Eric McCandless/ABC Family; ABC Family (11); Giphy