The truth about Nick’s past was on everyone’s lips during the third episode of Nancy Drew. While his juvenile records were previously sealed, that little hiccup didn’t stop Nancy and Det. Karen Hart from digging deeper into the mysterious young man. His connection to Tiffany Hudson and what he did to land himself in juvie had been questions that hung over the first three episodes of Nancy Drew. But in the case of “The Curse of the Dark Storm,” the path to get to those answers became a complex journey for an underwhelming reveal.
From the way Carson and Karen had insinuated about Nick, you would’ve naturally assumed that he did something huge to be branded as a dangerous threat. Don’t get me wrong, murder is a big red flag, but he acted in self-defense and saved his female friend from further assault. Carson and Karen blew his past way out of proportion, and dare I say, they stereotyped him to the point of wanting to place the blame all on him. Nick never had a chance to clear his name; the police were going to pin Tiffany’s death on him, regardless of other potential big suspects. Thankfully, Nancy’s discovery removes him as the leading suspect and he has some leeway now to fully clear his name. The police and Carson need to do a better job.
Furthermore, Karen stepped way over-the-line by offering that deal to Nancy. Karen was too closely connected to Nancy and the case to make an unbiased offer. She had no proof to claim Nick as the prime suspect nor had any way of knowing that Nancy had the information to pin it on Nick; she put her own personal feelings first to determine the offers. Why are the cops and detectives in small towns always portrayed as inept, biased, and bumbling idiots? Once Nancy proved that Tiffany and Nick were on good terms, why didn’t Karen decide to work with them? Karen is a frustrating character.
Though, Nick did not make the series of events toward clearing his name any easier. Why didn’t he just come clean with the truth to Nancy? She found his hidden phone, she knew details of his past, and she was giving him an out to prove his innocence. His hurt ego of Nancy doing her investigative job only made him look more guilty. The story itself could’ve saved several minutes of back-and-forth of Nick dodging questions had he simply told her the truth in the garage. It’s still way too early into Nancy Drew Season 1, so good chances are that Nick isn’t the killer, so we can move past that red-herring and he can build truth with Nancy. She put a lot on the line to help him, but he wasn’t giving anything back to her.
The case itself strangely was both complex and simple at the same time. Tiffany’s love for riddles created a case that evoked the same mystery-solving energy that we love from a Nancy Drew book, but Nick and Nancy breezed through the clues to get the box in the Lilac Inn. The couple had no trouble solving riddles, finding hidden compartments, or making references from the slimmest of connections. And, let’s not forget how Nancy and Nick could both easily identify famous authors and artists by the self-portraits. Come on, they’re smart, but it’s not to the point of instant answers. The implausibility here lacked realism and took us out of the moment.
With the revelation of Tiffany leaving the bonds for Nick, this could mean that something more nefarious is going on with the case than previously thought. Leaving $5,000,000 to start a new life as a way of forgiveness is a big move that displayed Tiffany’s guilt. She did something that she didn’t want to do and it haunted her. Maybe the deeper truth is what got her killed?
Plus, that same guilt might be what is haunting Ryan too. There are too ways to look at this: (1) Lucy Sable is haunting Ryan because he’s involved in her death too and Tiffany’s death, or (2) the Drew household is haunted by Lucy and Ryan merely saw the ghost because of his guilt, but there’s no connection between the two. I’m still on the fence here because these mysteries have barely crossed paths yet and it’s too early to tie them together. However, Ryan’s hiding something about his lack of money, so his suspect level increased exponentially.
I’m happy Bess is agreeing to stay with Nancy. She couldn’t stay in her van, especially after what the storm did her belongings and shelter. Hopefully, with her rooming with Nancy, we’ll learn the truth about why she’s living her van or why she has Tiffany’s ring. More than likely it’s about making some money from selling it, but the truth needs to come out.
The supernatural aspect of Nancy Drew is getting so dark and juicy! The random appearances of Lucy send a spine-chilling feeling during the jump scares, and the elements of a darker force make it seem like the town is haunted. George has to watch her back now that she knows the spirits have marked her for death. Rita was her warning! She’s got to start believing in her protections or else the curse will come true.
“The Curse of the Dark Storm” incorporated a lot of the mystery-solving elements that we tend to love and expect from Nancy Drew. The episode had a dark and twisted vibe to it, and the added backdrop of the storm provided a grim mood to the series of events. On the other hand, the easy problem-solving ability of the characters took away from the fun that would’ve hooked us in wanting to crack the code. I understand that Nancy Drew has to fit a lot in under an hour, but the cases need to be cracked, not easily opened.