The Spirit Takes Over in ‘Nancy Drew’ Season 1, Episode 5: “The Case of the Wayward Spirit”

Nancy Drew has proven to be quite the thriller so far in its first season. Between creepy visions and clues from Dead Lucy, and a murder where anyone could have done it, ghosts, death and murder have driven the story arc thus far. Wednesday’s episode, “The Case of the Wayward Spirit,” was no different, and we were left on the edges of our seats as we watched George get possessed.

The previous episode ended with what looked like George getting possessed, and that is exactly where we pick up. We find George creepily walking through Ryan Hudson’s home. She nears his sleeping body before heading to the bathroom, letting her hair down, and writing “I know” on the mirror in blood. However, it is Tiffany seen in the mirror, not George. Proof of a possession is becoming clearer and clearer.

The next day, George has no recollection of how she hurt her finger. But we do a meet a new character at The Claw — an actual Marvin. The family Bess was pretending to be a part of. There is a gala that the Marvins are hosting in honor of Tiffany Hudson, and The Claw is on deck to cater the event. It is also at The Claw where George gets a call from Ryan about a break in. All signs lead to George.

Another story arc driving this episode is Nancy’s inquiry into Karen’s relationship with Dead Lucy. Though Nancy finds numerous dead ends, no pun intended. Karen will not answer her call, and the police department is putting a stop to outside help. Looks like Nancy will have to get a little creative to solve this mystery.

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Back at The Claw, Nancy, Ace, and Bess discover George’s possession when she locks herself in her office and frantically scratches her face out of all the pictures. It does not seem like something George would do herself. But a wife scratching out the face of a girl her husband was cheating with? Definitely more likely.

It is a story hard to believe for all involved, but one by one, they all do. All signs point towards Tiffany Hudson. For instance, when Nick drops by and confronts Ace about Tiffany’s sister (Laura Tandy) breaking into his place, he does not even notice George there. With mention of her sister, a possessed George stirs, nervously playing with a phantom ring. A tic Tiffany herself used to do. And Nick recognizes it. “Awakening” George by showing her true form is when George finds out about it all.

Enter George’s mom. If there is one person who will save George, it is her mom. It leads to the confession of George’s affair, but also the realization that Tiffany will eventually take over. Which means, George will cease to exist. It is not the best omen of things to come.

Things should go smoothly for the catering event, right? Not if Tiffany’s ghost has a say. Nancy, Ace, George, and Nick (filling in for Bess) are working the event. For the most part, things run well. Until Nancy is haunted by Dead Lucy once again. Outside, she finds a mound of dirt. She reaches for a scrap of a dress, only for a hand to reach out and grab her. She pulls away and runs into Karen.

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It turns out the mound of dirt was never even there. Yet, it led her to Karen nonetheless. Confronting her with the knowledge of Karen’s relationship with Lucy, she confesses she lied because of guilt. Their friendship had a falling out when Lucy started to pull away after a party. This party was an exclusive thing, and also a year before she was killed. Coincidence? Probably not.

Meanwhile, Nick confronts Laura about breaking into his place while Ace is present. The story is that Tiffany had information on the Hudson’s. Enough to tear the family down. She stopped talking about it with Laura, but as Nick mentions, Tiffany was just protecting her. It is very possible that the information Tiffany collected got her murdered. Or it is a likely cover-up. Time will certainly tell. One thing is for certain, none of them are finding out what is on the flash drive Laura stole from Nick without her help.

Speaking of information on the Hudsons, a conversation between Owen Marvin and Ryan Hudson brings to light that Ryan has lost hundreds of millions of dollars. That would certainly leave a man pretty desperate. And according to Ryan, he is working on making all that money back. How is a very good question at this point.

After Owen Marvin gets flirty with Nancy, the party falls into further turmoil as George goes missing. She sees the conversation between Ryan and Owen. It is clear it is once again not George, but Tiffany, as she sees Ryan and grabs a sharp knife. Knife in hand, she seems to walk with a purpose, stopping in front of a van for River Heights Dry Cleaning. Of course, it is a shout out to Nancy’s hometown in the books!

Everyone is on deck to try and find George, and hopefully save her before she is gone forever. Even Bess is on her way with George’s mom. Everything goes awry like it normally does. Ace dances with Kaura instead of searching for George. Kissing and smooth moves definitely will not find your friend.

Bess gets distracted, too, when Lisbeth shows up as soon as she arrives. Things seem to be going smoothly between them. Even an exchange of numbers is involved. Of course, that would be when Bess spots George, decked out in a flowing red gown, knife still in hand.

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As if things could not possibly get worse, A possessed George confronts Ryan in the crowd of people. She once again whispers the words “I know,” but this time followed by, “about the waitress.” She proceeds to kiss him in front of everyone. Saved by the Drew, Nancy comes up with a story that they need Ryan for a photo op. With him gone, Nancy says they need her, too, leading George away from the crowd.

Time for a good old-fashioned exorcism. Well, if exorcisms involved incense. That is exactly what is supposed to happen. George’s mom is prepared to remove the spirit from her daughter’s body. However, once again, the plan goes horribly awry.

Things are being prepared, but Nancy wants answers. Nick seems like a good help, too. Together, they seem to have a way to get through to Tiffany. Given Tiffany’s close relationship with Nick, that is not surprising. It just does not help that Tiffany does not realize she is even dead. Even worse, Tiffany’s sister Laura breaks the ritual and urges her to run.

Tiffany (in George’s body) does run away. Right into Ryan Hudson. He pulls her into a study and angrily confronts her about her “little stunt.” We see a noticeable change in her demeanor, and we know once again it is George. She begs for help before changing back to Tiffany. Ryan is none the wiser when Nancy and George’s mom barge in. Her mom shouts for Tiffany to leave her daughter. Ryan, thinking it is directed towards him, leaves the room. It kind of takes the whole “it’s not me, it’s you” thing to a new level.

Nancy and the crew plead with Tiffany to let George live. They search for empathy and forgiveness for a young girl’s mistake. Regardless, Bess and George’s mom work quick with the incense and words. Just like that, the exorcism is back in action. Nick takes his place, too. Right in front of Tiffany. Nancy assures her that she will solve her murder, while Nick agrees he will too. Even more, he will stay with Tiffany until the end.

Tiffany has some last words, though. She wants Nick to keep Laura safe, smoothing Nick assures her he will. She also says cryptically, “Dantés.” Another clue towards her murder, I am sure. Finally, she begs Nick to remember her. Then, all at once things go quiet and George collapses.

George wakes to her mom and the people she is probably quickly becoming to call friends. Her mom banished the spirit, but leaves to summon an Uber. Nancy has the mind to ask Nick if he is okay, too, given that he had to say goodbye to a close friend. He is, but he too leaves to follow Tiffany’s clue.

In a sweet moment, George asks if Nancy got what she wanted. Her response? “Yeah. You didn’t die.” George also admits the possession felt like an emotional one, and something she does not want to deal with in the moment. It seems George will be dealing with the effects of that one for awhile. It does get Nancy to look for the emotional clue for Dead Lucy, though. What could she possibly have been emotionally attached to?

Nancy is determined to find out, and uses Owen’s flirtation to her advantage. He is in the business of real estate, and therefore has equipment Nancy could use to unearth the time capsule Lucy’s class buried.

Meanwhile, Ace and Nick work to input the password to Tiffany’s USB drive. Nick, of course, has the answer. Dantés. Tiffany has a lot of dirt on the Hudsons, but also Owen Marvin. Looks like we have a new suspect.

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Back to Nancy, she finds many things in the time capsule. A scrunchie, an old cell phone, a packet of poetry, a gross toothbrush, and a video of messages from the past. Class of Keene High School 1999 has a hidden secret. Nancy spots Lucy handing cookies to a boy, then the video skips. It skips back to Lucy in a way that audio clearly says “Ryan.” Without a doubt, that boy is Ryan Hudson. Looks like Ryan is still secured as the prime suspect after this tidbit of information.

As usual, we are always left with new clues, but more questions. Is the obvious suspect the right one? Especially when everyone seems to have a secret in Horseshoe Bay. One suspect gets cleared, just for another one to pop up. It will be interesting to see how the season continues as Nancy follows the clues to both Tiffany and Lucy’s untimely deaths. It is looking more and more like these two murders are somehow connected.

Next week will surely keep the suspense flowing as Nancy follows the clues. How will the new knowledge of both Ryan Hudson and Owen Marvin come into play? Find out next Wednesday at 9 p.m. EST on The CW!

Melanie

When Melanie isn’t writing for Nerds and Beyond, she’s doing her best to make professional fangirl a thing. She loves writing fan fiction, drawing fan art, reading comics and binge-watching like it’s a professional sport. Her list of fandoms just keep growing, and will always cite Supernatural and Psych as her first forays into fangirldom. Though Nancy Drew will always be her first real fandom. Melanie works hard at making her art a career and has dreams of becoming a published author someday. You can find her on Twitter @FangirlLanie.

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