Anthony Del Col and Werther Dell’Edera’s Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys: The Big Lie is back. The first issue set up the murder of Fenton Hardy, and having become suspects in their father’s murder, Frank and Joe turn to their old friend, Nancy Drew for help with the case.
Readers were briefly introduced to Nancy at the end of the first issue, and #2 further develops her character. Nancy is the coolest cucumber in all of Bayport, and has a plan to draw out Fenton Hardy’s murderer with Frank and Joe’s help.
Originally, I was apprehensive about the series focusing on the murder of a family member, but the team (so far) has stayed away from a tropey Quest For Vengeance. In a world where Quests For Vengeance are a dime a dozen, I can’t describe how glad I am that the Hardy boys aren’t going full John Wick–those stories have their time and place, just not in this comic.
There are a lot of things consistent with the originals, and while Del Col and Dell’Edera’s take on this new story is a little darker than anything published by Stratemeyer Syndicate, it’s enjoyable. Del Col has elaborated a little on bits of information that were included in every book, like Frank and Joe’s family history and Nancy’s relationship with her father after her mother died.
Plot-wise, this series is paced well, with a good balance of background information and an actual plot. There isn’t a lot of filler, which is a bonus. In this issue, Nancy has come up with a plan to infiltrate a mob family in order to mine them for information about the murder. In addition to furthering the murder plot, readers learn more about Nancy and the town of Bayport.
Dell’Edera’s art has the same almost-vintage feel as issue #1. In Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys #2, though, we get to see a bit more range from Dell’Edera and colorist Stefano Simeone. Dell’Edera’s fashion is particularly of note–it’s a rare and pleasant surprise to see an artist pay as much attention to fashion as is done in this comic. Simeone’s color palettes are absolutely beautiful throughout the comic, turning the art into a visual feast.
Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys could have easily been a grim and dark reboot of an older property, but the art and colors keep it from ever approaching the Too Gritty mark. The series is an entertaining read, with plenty of nods to the source material that are fun Easter eggs for familiar readers.
Story: Anthony Del Col Art: Werther Dell’Edera Color: Stefano Simeone
Covers: Faye Dalton (a), Dave Bullock (b)
Story: 8.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy
Dynamite provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review