Know that both of these shows were purely experimental but only one managed to pull through
The Hardy Boys, written by Franklin W. Dixon first came out in 1927, and Nancy Drew, written by Carolyn Keene released in 1930. Both were on teenage detectives who solved crimes within their neighbourhoods as well as overseas. They had many live-action, but failed adaptations over the years but we are now getting them back to back.
Hulu has started their own The Hardy Boys adaptation while CW’s Nancy Drew returns with its second season in January. Let’s move on to see why these stories are so difficult to adapt on screen.
Why Nancy wins
First of all, both series are not faithful to their base material. What matters next is how both chose to tell their stories.
Nancy Drew has totally revamped the classic heroine and made her suitable for modern audiences. Meanwhile The Hardy Boys still manages to pay a few homages to its source with wholesome stories, younger characters, and a timeless aesthetic. But they went wrong on many areas.
The story is pretty much bland, many of the characters don’t resemble their novel versions and don’t make their roles interesting enough for viewers to keep watching. The age gap between the brothers is quite big and it affected the overall relationship of the two; Frank is sixteen and Joe is just twelve. Joe is closer to his friend Biff than Frank in fact.
Meanwhile Nancy is now an adult, but still earnest in uncovering the truth behind a mystery, no matter the emotional toll it takes on her. The series is more darker and you understand it from the start. Meanwhile, The Hardy Boys made an attempt to appeal to multiple ages but still fell flat.