‘Nancy Drew’ Season One, Episode Two Recap: “The Secret in the Old Morgue”


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What’s up, Drew Crew? This week, Nancy confronts more ghosts, both the literal one hanging around Horseshoe Bay and the ones from her past.

We open with Nancy in the attic, immediately following the end of last week’s episode. The light flickers on; Nancy’s father is home. She quickly puts the bloody dress back in the trunk as she narrates, “What’s the dress of a girl who was murdered 20 years ago doing in my attic?” Good question, Nancy.

She joins her father in the kitchen, where they have an extremely awkward heart-to-heart. He’s sorry he wasn’t honest with her about his relationship with her mother’s friend Karen, but Nancy just tunes out as he continues to talk. She can’t stop thinking about his potential connection to Dead Lucy. He asks her if she has any questions, but she curtly answers “no” as her thoughts wander.

We cut to George and Ryan Hudson making out in his bedroom. His phone buzzes, and when he answers it’s clear something is wrong. “What do you mean, they want to do an autopsy?” he says as he leaves George alone in the bed. George, nervous, goes to leave as Ryan continues to instruct the person on the other end of the line.

The next day, Nancy heads to the police department. She attempts to go behind the desk, but is stopped by Chief McGinnis, who is less than thrilled to see her. Nancy asks for the Lucy Sable case file, which the Chief finds suspicious, since it’s a 20-year-old case. Just then, Karen interrupts with the news that Ryan Hudson got a court order barring the department from conducting the autopsy on Tiffany Hudson. It will be handled in New Hampshire by what he deems to be a “qualified expert.” The Chief escorts Nancy out, and she shifts her focus to the crime she is actively involved in.

Nancy lists the various reasons the others could be considered suspects. Ace is smarter than he seems, Bess may not be as rich as she says, George has a history of keeping big secrets, and Nick has the only real motive out of all of them, because Tiffany Hudson put him in jail three years ago. As Nancy gets lost in her thoughts again, Nick startles her by appearing at her locker. He asks her to be his date to the Seawater Ceremony. She agrees to meet Nick at the beach, but as she walks away, she narrates to herself, “God, I hope he’s innocent.”

The Claw is nearly empty; the customers have been scared away by the murder. George wants them to post positive reviews on Yelp to get business back, but Nancy sarcastically says, “And post what? We promise our waitstaff didn’t murder anyone?” Nancy shares what she overheard about the autopsy. George gets a nervous look on her face, because she heard Ryan talk about stopping the autopsy. Nevertheless, she insists that Nancy is looking in the wrong place. Nancy looks at George, puzzled. Then, she starts to think of how they can get around the medical examiner, who Ryan has likely paid off to conduct a favorable autopsy. Nancy remembers that there’s a chemist who owes her for solving a “perfume related mystery” for him in the ninth grade. He could run his own tests. The only problem is that they would need to get some of Tiffany’s blood. Bess is horrified but intrigued. Nancy rushes off, leaving George, Bess, and Ace at The Claw.

Nancy returns to the police department, looking to break in. She watches the coroner leave, then follows him to pick the lock on the door. Since there’s only a keycard reader, Nancy starts to leave to formulate a new plan when she is stopped by an eerie sound. She turns back to the window and sees something behind her, but when she turns to face it, it’s gone. As she walks towards where she saw the flash, a hand drops out of the tree and brushes her shoulder. Nancy jumps, shocked, but there is nothing there. Shaking it off, she narrates, “get it together, Drew. You don’t believe in ghosts…right?”

Nancy returns to The Claw and tells the group they’ll have to break in after dark. Ace is hesitant, as the morgue is reportedly haunted by Dead Lucy. Bess is increasingly freaked out, but Nancy once again downplays the supernatural, insisting that they can’t let a ghost story ruin their best chance to get evidence. She states that they will steal the coroner’s key card and sneak in during the ceremony, getting the blood to her chemist by 9 p.m. Bess points out that the body is due to be picked up by 8 p.m., but Nancy plans to cancel that transport. Ace suggests that they call the medical examiner and impersonate someone who works for Ryan. They just need Ryan’s phone. George contributes that Ryan goes jogging in the afternoons and leaves his things at Hudson’s Creek. She quickly covers how she knows this information by saying she cuts through there on her lunch break. She seems hesitant to help, but when Nancy presses, she agrees, stomping off.

Nancy heads to the mechanic’s to get tools for the break in. She sees Nick and asks him for a tool to break into a locked car. He obliges, despite his worry that she’ll do something dangerous again. Nancy assures Nick that if she is planning on doing something dangerous, she won’t tell him.

George goes to Hudson’s car and retrieves his phone. She turns to leave, but Ryan calls her name. She lies quickly, saying she was looking for him. She wants to know why he’s moving Tiffany’s body. Ryan says Tiffany was heavily medicated when she died, and he didn’t want word getting out, since tabloids tend to go after prominent families like his. A smaller jurisdiction might be less discreet. As he puts his sweatshirt on, George discreetly puts the phone on the ground. She says that everyone is talking about him, but Ryan reassures her. They kiss, and as George heads back to work, Ryan looks suspicious. He asks her what else everyone is saying, and George simply says, “do you really want me to answer that?” as she leaves. Unbeknownst to George and Ryan, Nancy has been watching the whole meeting from a distance.

Ryan meets up with Carson Drew in an effort to rehab his image in town. Carson wonders why Ryan doesn’t just let his parents’ publicist handle it, but Ryan knows Carson has a good reputation with the locals and that his parents used to have him on retainer. Carson offers the advice that Ryan needs to stop treating the residents of Horseshoe Bay like they’re beneath him. Carson knows that they still see Ryan as a rich summer resident who is up to no good, and that won’t be helpful to Ryan if he has to stand trial in his wife’s murder. As he drives away, Carson adds, “I promised my wife I’d never work for another Hudson.”

Nancy is waiting for George when she returns from her meetup with Ryan. She tries to say that Ryan took his phone jogging, but Nancy calls her out on the lie. George is furious, accusing Nancy of jumping to conclusions. She reminds Nancy that her friends used to mock George in high school, calling her a slut due to all the rumors about her. Nancy says that her friends were idiots. George fires back that they were still her friends and that they dumped Nancy when her mom was dying. This hits Nancy hard, but before she can react, Ace and Bess return. Nancy informs them the plan is off, but doesn’t reveal George’s secret. Ace says that they can try to delay the transport long enough for them to get what they need. Nancy agrees, and they all leave to put the plan in motion.

Nancy explains that the Seawater Festival happens every year. The townspeople each put a bucket of seawater outside their door and kick it over at midnight. Legend says that if the seawater turns to blood, you will die within a year. Nick and Nancy pull up to the beach with festivities underway. Nick knows she’s planning something, but he agrees to sit this out due to his record.

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Nancy spots Ryan trying to charm the locals with cash. Chief McGinnis spots the same thing and starts to follow him. Karen notes that she’s never seen a Hudson show up to a town event, and Carson responds that he’s doing it to rehab his image. Nancy spots the coroner’s car pulling into the lot and leaves Nick, while George tries to approach Ryan. She appears to want to tell him about the plan, but he brushes her off, pretending he doesn’t know her.

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Nancy successfully gets the keycard from the coroner’s car, but as she goes to leave, she notices blood spilling out from under the car. As she looks into the car window, Dead Lucy appears, screaming and startling Nancy. She jumps back, but there’s nothing there.

As she heads back to the beach, Bess approaches and notices Nancy is shaken. Nancy tells her about what she saw, and Bess believes it’s a warning to stay away from the morgue. Nancy chalks it up to an overreaction and insists she’s ready to keep going with the plan.

Under cover of darkness, Nancy sneaks into the morgue. Bess and Ace wait outside for the van, pretending Ace’s car has a flat tire. The transport stops when it sees them signaling for assistance. The driver, Lisbeth, offers to let them use her jack. She’s quick at replacing the tire. Ace is worried, because Nancy is still in the morgue. Ace messes with his engine, causing it to smoke and leak oil to get Lisbeth to stay. Lisbeth and Bess seem to have a connection, and Bess gets her number.

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Meanwhile, Nancy is trying to get the blood from Tiffany’s body. She is successful and goes to leave but is again stopped by an eerie sound. A door opens by itself down the hall: the tissue sample room. Nancy enters the room, where parts of Lucy Sable’s body resides. Nancy goes to take some of the evidence, but all the alarms go off, and she bolts. The keycard she stole doesn’t work, but George appears with a crowbar. Despite disagreeing with Nancy, she needs to know what really happened to Tiffany as much as Nancy does. George smashes the window and asks for the blood, knowing that the police will take it anyway if Nancy is arrested. Nancy hands it over, still not sure if she can trust George. The guards catch up with Nancy, and she is arrested.

Bess and Ace are back at The Claw, but Nancy hasn’t arrived yet. Ace continues to flirt with Bess, prodding her on her connection with Lisbeth, but she shuts it down, saying she doesn’t date anyone, boys or girls. She doesn’t want to put down an anchor since she moves around so much. Ace offers to be her “platanchor” — a platonic anchor. But it’s clear he’d like more than that. Just then, George bursts in, explaining that Nancy got arrested and that she has “a bunch of dead people’s parts.” Bess is concerned about Nancy, while Ace is fascinated by the body parts.

As Karen books Nancy for trespassing, she admonishes her, saying it only make Nancy look more guilty when she pulls these stunts. She seems genuinely concerned, but Nancy doesn’t want to hear it from Karen. Nancy realizes she has a chance to look through Karen’s computer, and asks her for coffee to get her to leave. She searches and finds Tiffany’s last text, writing the number on her shirt and returning to her seat before Karen returns.

Carson arrives, frustrated. He’ll try to get them to drop the charges, but Nancy’s an adult now. He is angry that Nancy doesn’t trust him, noting that she broke into his filing cabinet. But he knows that she did it to find out about Nick. He lets her know that Nick never would have known that Tiffany testified against him, because she testified behind a screen. Nancy tells Carson about the dress she found in the attic. He claims it was a prop he used to scare Nancy’s mom years ago, fake blood and all. Nancy counters with her memory of her parents digging up the trunk in the backyard. Carson says it belonged to Nancy’s great-grandmother Rosalind and contained the china that Nancy’s mother loved, which is why they dug it up. Carson reveals that he paid Nancy’s bail using money from Ryan Hudson, officially joining his legal team.

Nancy stops by The Claw and gets the samples from George. Nancy apologizes for not stopping the rumors about George in high school, and George says she owed Nancy a favor since she didn’t out her to Bess and Ace. She realizes she deserves better than Ryan, but that her awareness doesn’t always match her actions. Bess and Ace reappear with boxes that Nancy uses to ship the parts to the chemist (who works at Northeastern University, which happens to be my college!). Nancy heads over to Nick’s, and he surprises her with her mother’s car, all fixed up. He even includes a compartment for Nancy’s mother’s necklace, where it will be safe as Nancy goes on all her adventures. They kiss, and the scene cuts to Carson sitting along at the water’s edge. He looks worried, and as he gets up to leave we flash to Bess. She contemplates texting Lisbeth, but deletes the message as she kicks over her bucket. Ace kicks his bucket and checks his phone. He has a text from “Weed Guy,” who asks Ace to keep him informed about any results from the morgue. Who could this be? As Nancy and Nick make out, Nick leaves to kick over his bucket.

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We cut back to Carson, who is burning the bloody dress by the water. Why bother burning it if it is just a harmless prank like he said? George kicks over her bucket, and is horrified to see red liquid coming from it. Nancy starts to call the number she retrieved from earlier, but Nick returns and she hangs up. But as she and Nick continue their make-out session, the camera pans over to a phone with one missed call: Nick’s.

Nancy Drew airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on the CW.

I am a nurse and dedicated nerd from Boston, MA. When I'm not at work, I'm rewatching old favorites like Supernatural or discovering my new obsessions (too many to count!). When not fangirling, I can be found reading, writing, or listening to a true crime podcast. You can find me on Twitter @juleswritesblog for more nerdy nonsense.

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