The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries
|The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries|
|Developed by||Glen A. Larson|
Pamela Sue Martin (1977-1978)
Janet Louise Johnson (1978-79)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||3|
|No. of episodes||46 (list of episodes)|
|Production company(s)||Glen A. Larson Productions|
|Original release||January 30, 1977 – January 14, 1979|
The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (retitled The Hardy Boys Mysteries for season three) is a television series which aired for three seasons on ABC. The series starred Parker Stevenson and Shaun Cassidy as detective brothers Frank and Joe Hardy, respectively, and Pamela Sue Martin (later Janet Louise Johnson) as amateur slueth Nancy Drew.
The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries was unusual in that it often dealt with the characters individually, in an almost anthological style. That is, some episodes featured only the Hardy Boys and others only Nancy Drew.
The Hardy Boys, Frank and Joe, are brother amateur detectives. The two boys live in the fictional city of Bayport, Massachusetts (a change from the book series, which sets Bayport in the state of New York)  with their famous father, Fenton Hardy, a private detective who spent "twenty years" with the New York Police Department.
In addition to the Hardy Boys, their stories feature two other characters with some regularity: Aunt Gertrude and a platonic female friend of the boys, Callie Shaw, who also does part-time work for their father. The only other character who played a major part of the Hardy Boys books, Chet Morton, appeared only briefly in the series.
Nancy Drew is the amateur sleuth — she prefers the term "part time investigator" — daughter of attorney Carson Drew. She lives with her father, Carson, in the fictional town of River Heights, New Jersey (another change from the book series, which sets River Heights outside of Chicago).
In addition to Nancy Drew and her father, her stories feature two other characters with some regularity: her close friend Georgia (George) Fayne and Ned Nickerson. Another prominent character from the Nancy Drew books, Bess Marvin, made only two appearances in two-part episodes. In the novels on which the series was based, Nickerson is explicitly identified as Nancy's boyfriend. In the television series, their romance is more ambiguous. In the first season, Nickerson is a law student who does part-time work for Carson Drew. In the second season, Nickerson is re-introduced, with no reference to his earlier appearances, in a scene, in which he is apparently introduced to Nancy Drew for the first time, as a young hotshot lawyer from the city District Attorney's office.
The TV show marked the first time that the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew met and worked together as they had never done so in the context of the books at that time (up to that point). In the first episode of the second season ("The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula") they meet in a hotel room in Europe. The boys, tracking their father, who was working on a case with Nancy Drew. Though the relationship between Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys is mostly platonic, there is a heavily-implied romance between Nancy Drew and Frank Hardy. In one episode ("Mystery of the Hollywood Phantom") they kiss briefly.
- Pamela Sue Martin as Nancy Drew (Seasons 1-2)
- Janet Louise Johnson as Nancy Drew (Season 2)
- William Schallert as Carson Drew
- Jean Rasey as George (Georgia) Fayne (Season 1)
- Susan Buckner as George (Georgia) Fayne (Season 2)
- George O'Hanlon Jr. as Ned Nickerson (Season 1)
- Rick Springfield as Ned Nickerson (Season 2; guest appearance only)
- Ruth Cox as Bess Marvin (Season 2)
The Hardy Boys
- Parker Stevenson as Frank Hardy
- Shaun Cassidy as Joe Hardy
- Ed Gilbert as Fenton Hardy
- Edith Atwater as Aunt Gertrude (Season 1)
- Lisa Eilbacher as Callie Shaw (Season 1)
- Gary Springer as Chet Morton (Season 1)
The show was filmed at Universal Studios on the studio lot on parts of Colonial Street, the backlot street which was later used in the Tom Hanks film The 'Burbs and was used as Wisteria Lane in the hit TV series Desperate Housewives.
|Season||Episodes||First aired||Last aired|
|1||14||January 30, 1977||May 22, 1977|
|2||22||September 11, 1977||May 7, 1978|
|3||10||October 1, 1978||January 14, 1979|
During the first season individual episodes were entirely focused either on the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew, and aired alternately. The opening credits featured a maze under the series title, and shifts plane of focus supposedly to "3-D."
At the end of the haunting theme music, a voice-over announcer would state who was featured in the episode and the episode title. This worked well for cross-over episodes featuring both the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew, as the credits featured all of the performers.
Episode #12 The Mystery of the Ghostwriter's Cruise is noteworthy because it contains a sequence in which a tsunami appears to approach a cruise ship, a deliberate homage to The Poseidon Adventure, in which Martin also starred.
For the show's second and third seasons the title sequence was altered; the maze replaced with clips from the series and a collage of book covers from the book series. Depending on which characters were featured - the Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew or both - the sequence was altered to give emphasis to one or the other.
During the second season, only three episodes feature Drew alone; the remainder starred the Hardy Boys with Pamela Sue Martin, as Nancy Drew, credited as a guest star (creating an unusual situation in which an actor playing a title role in a series was not actually acknowledged in the opening credits).
This was due in part to a change for the second season, where separate opening credits rolled for episodes featuring the different title characters. Martin left the series during the second season, and was replaced, for three episodes near the end, by actress Janet Louise Johnson.
Both the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew featured in eight episodes, six of which were in the form of two-part episodes. Pamela Sue Martin played Nancy Drew in The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula and The Mystery of the Hollywood Phantom which were both transmitted in two parts.
After Martin departed the series, the character of Nancy Drew made three more appearances, with the Hardy Boys, in the episodes Voodoo Doll, Mystery on the Avalanche Express and Arson and Old Lace. In those, she was played by Janet Louise Johnson.
For season 3, although the show had the same actors, ABC rebooted the series and omitted the "Nancy Drew" part. The series, now titled The Hardy Boys, had Frank and Joe hired by the US Justice Department as professional investigation agents. The series lasted for 10 episodes before being cancelled.
A number of well known actors appeared in episodes of The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries, either as celebrity guest stars or before they achieved subsequent fame.
Celebrities who appeared in episodes included Ricky Nelson (The Flickering Torch Mystery); Bob Crane (A Haunting We Will Go); Lorne Greene, Bernie Taupin, Trini Lopez and Paul Williams (The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Meet Dracula, where Williams sang the song "Hell of It", which originally appeared on his 1974 starring film Phantom of the Paradise); Jaclyn Smith, Robert Wagner, Casey Kasem and Dennis Weaver (Mystery of the Hollywood Phantom); Tony Dow (The Creatures Who Came on Sunday); Maureen McCormick (Nancy Drew's Love Match); William Campbell and Missy Gold (Will The Real Santa ...?); Lloyd Bochner and Dorothy Malone (The House on Possessed Hill); Diana Muldaur (Sole Survivor); Ray Milland and Howard Duff (Voodoo Doll); Vic Damone, Fabian and Troy Donahue (Mystery on the Avalanche Express); Jack Jones (Death Surf); Pernell Roberts and Joseph Cotten (Arson and Old Lace); Kevin Tighe"Last Kiss of Summer" Dana Andrews and Patrick Macnee (Assault on the Tower); John Colicos (Search for Atlantis); June Lockhart and Robert Loggia (Dangerous Waters); and Robert Karnes, who guest starred as a sheriff in four episodes: Mystery of the Fallen Angels, A Haunting We Will Go, The Mystery of the Diamond Triangle, and The Mystery of Pirate's Cove (all 1977).
Famous actors who appeared in the series earlier in their career included Jamie Lee Curtis, Robert Englund and A Martinez (The Mystery of the Fallen Angels); Rosalind Chao (The Mystery of the Jade Kwan Yin); Mark Harmon and Martin Kove (The Mystery of the Solid Gold Kicker); Anne Lockhart (The Mystery of the African Safari and The Last Kiss of Summer); Rick Springfield (Will The Real Santa ...?); Nicholas Hammond and John Karlen (The Lady on Thursday at Ten); Melanie Griffith (The House on Possessed Hill); Kim Cattrall and Linda Dano (Voodoo Doll); Valerie Bertinelli, Stepfanie Kramer and Kim Lankford (Campus Terror); and Ana Alicia (Life on the Line).
Producer Glen A. Larson also produced the science fiction series Battlestar Galactica, which aired in 1978-'79 and 1980. A number of actors who appeared in The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries were also either cast members or guest stars of that series, including Lorne Greene, Maren Jensen, Anne Lockhart, Rick Springfield, Ana Alicia, Patrick Macnee and John Colicos.
The series was nominated for an Emmy Award in 1977, in the category of "Special Classification of Outstanding Individual Achievement", recognizing the work of cinematographer Enzo Martinelli.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment has released The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries Seasons 1 & 2 on DVD in Region 1 & 2. In fall 2008, Netflix.com made Season 3 available to watch through their "Watch Instantly" subscription service. However, as of November 2009 the episodes were no longer available. Shout! Factory released the third and final season on DVD on February 12, 2013.
|DVD Name||Ep #||Region 1||Region 2|
|Season 1||14||March 22, 2005||July 16, 2007|
|Season 2||22||June 12, 2007||December 26, 2007|
|Season 3||10||February 12, 2013||TBA|
- Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries www.epguides.com. Retrieved 19 December 2009.
- At no point does the series state the ages of the brothers. Chief Collig refers to them as "underage" in "Mystery of the Jade Kwan Yin" & the implication in that episode is that they're still in high school, but no age is specifically mentioned. The books at the time have the brothers as one year apart.
- As stated in the episodes "Mystery of the Jade Kwan Yin", "House on Possessed Hill", and "Mystery of Witches Hollow", Bayport is in Massachusetts. The book series is set in NY, but the location was changed for the TV show.
- Stated in the episode "Mystery of the Haunted House"
- Location changed for the TV show. The book series sets River Heights near Chicago, IL, but the TV show sets it near NYC, New York. No specific state is mentioned.