Nancy Drew Season 1, Episode 4 Recap: The (Wedding) Ring

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Nancy Drew Season 1 recap

The CW

Okay, Nancy Drew, this is the one day of the year you can scare the living sh*t out of me, and I won’t complain. On this All Hallows’ Eve Eve, Nancy Drew season 1 is just what the Witch Doctor ordered. Turn off the lights, hunker down with a handful of fun-sized Snickers, and get in the Halloween mood with Nancy, Nick, and the rest of the Scooby Gang on this week’s Nancy Drew recap.


nancy and nick

The CW

This Nancy Drew season 1 recap begins with Nancy asking herself a bunch of questions with obvious answers: Why is Bess lying about living with her aunt? Because she’s not super proud of living in a van, probably. Why did she steal a dead woman’s diamond ring? So she can afford to stop living in that van, probably. The girls investigate a strange noise downstairs in the Drew home, and I’m so on edge about the inevitable jump scare to come that I’m even freaked out by their television turning on. To be fair, the TV plays that snuff film of the moment Tiffany died before it explodes, so scared might be an appropriate reaction.

Nancy thinks Bess might be Tiffany’s killer, and Carson’s revelation that Tiffany’s autopsy ruled out foul play doesn’t do much to persuade her otherwise. Nancy is the only one who sees this clearly forged autopsy as a bad thing. Everyone else is just glad they’re no longer murder suspects, so I can’t imagine Nancy’s Scooby Gang will be too happy with her when she inevitably sleuths out the truth. A peek at the autopsy on her father’s desk confirms the report was forged when there’s no mention of the mark from Nancy’s little blood-stealing expedition, which she freely mentions to her father. Seriously, for a prolific detective, she has a huge blabbermouth.

Nancy goes down to the docks to chat with a longtime employee of Bess’s family who says in the 20 years he’s known the Marvins, a “Bess” has never been mentioned. Back at the Claw, Bess — or whatever her name is — hears whispering spirits that lead her to a freezer vent where she’s attacked by an unseen force. In the ensuing chaos, Bess is found wearing Tiffany’s ring and explains that she just found it on the ground the night of Tiffany’s murder without realizing where it came from. By the time she put two and two together, returning the ring would have just implicated her in Tiffany’s murder. Again, Nancy isn’t convinced. A little snooping in Bess’s work locker reveals a British passport bearing the name Bess Turani. For an amateur detective, Nancy must never watch noir films — she’s immediately caught by Bess, then reveals that she knows Bess’s real identity without Bess even having to prompt her.

We don’t get any answers because George’s hot young mom has arrived to un-curse Tiffany’s diamond ring. She confirms that Bess is being haunted, but to get rid of Tiffany’s presence, they just have to put the ring back on her corpse’s finger and place a mirror on the body to ensure that Tiffany’s ghost finds the correct vessel. At the funeral, Ryan almost catches George returning the ring because Bess leaves her post watching the door. We learn that Bess grew up poor and came to Horseshoe Bay looking for the Marvins because her mother claimed they were estranged wealthy relatives, but she was so spooked just by seeing a Marvin that she Lyfted right out of the funeral, leaving George defenseless. Carrying around a DNA kit is one thing, actually getting the DNA is another.

nancy drew season 1

The CW

Tiffany’s sister, Laura, breezes into town, and it sounds like her and Tony Stark would’ve gotten along: genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist… just without the philanthropist part. TBD on the genius bit, but she’s definitely a wealthy playgirl on a mission to solve her sister’s murder. Ace is suddenly very, very hot, just in time for a cop-mandated run-in with his ex, Laura. She asks Ace to get a copy of Tiffany’s 911 call and plays the recording for everyone to hear as her sister is being lowered into the ground, informing the Hudsons that she’ll be solving Tiffany’s murder. Ace forgives Laura for inadvertently exposing his hacking to the sheriff because their love is so strong or whatever, and Nick and Nancy suddenly have some competition for Horseshoe Bay’s cutest (messed-up) couple. Too bad Laura’s been snooping around Nick’s apartment for a hidden USB.

We finally learn why Nancy is so upset with her father, aside from the obvious. Her mother died while Nancy was at a school dance, and Carson honored Kay’s wishes by not informing Nancy so she could say goodbye. We also learn from Detective Karen that Lucy Sable was stabbed before being pushed off that cliff, but the depressing family drama sweeps that revelation under a rug of tears. It also inspires Carson to tell the press that the autopsy was falsified.

At home, Nancy reviews Tiffany’s snuff film and realizes Bess was telling the truth: Tiffany dropped her ring before being killed. Samara (get it, like The Ring) rewards Nancy’s genius by breaking her computer. Apparently, that’s exactly what Nancy needed to realize the shatter’s recurring pattern is a map of Horseshoe Bay with her high school at its center. A trip to Nancy’s alma mater reveals that Karen knew Lucy Sable pretty effing well. So why did Karen lie?



When Bess abruptly switches into a British accent with basically no warning. We know Maddison Jaizani is actually British, but for some reason, accents on CW shows always sound a little fake.


nancy drew season 1 recap

The CW

Honestly, we don’t know why Nancy Drew season 1 decided to make this episode their Halloween hurrah. For a show that’s always up for a good scare, this episode was fairly tame compared to the last week, when I legitimately had trouble sleeping after a particularly jarring jump scare shocked me with enough adrenaline to make a Starbucks Blonde Roast shiver. Next week’s episode, where George is possessed by Tiffany’s ghost, looks much more Halloween appropriate, but here we are. PSA to the Nancy Drew season 1 team, though: When we complain about it being too scary on Twitter, we just like complaining about things. You’re doing great, sweeties, keep it up.

As for this episode, Bess’s hair is too perfect for someone living in a Volkswagen van and George showed up to her ex’s wife’s funeral with a full face beat, so we’ve come to the conclusion that Nancy Drew’s glam squad is too good at their jobs. If there was ever a time to throw on a little mascara and your least favorite black biz-casual pants and call it a day, it’s at the funeral of the woman who’s husband you were banging. It’s like how you never want to upstage the bride at a wedding, but way, way weirder. Speaking of George’s menagé-a-nah, she spends most of Tiffany’s funeral trying to apologize to the spirit for boffing her husband. Okay, that’s fair, but George is forgiven in our book. She was a minor in a sexual relationship with a grown-*ss man. Even if she *thinks* she was part of some dramatic affair, in reality, she was being manipulated by some creepy dude who took advantage of their power imbalance and should probably be in jail for this if he doesn’t end up going away for murder.

Even Ace is looking especially good this episode, although we can’t quite put our finger on what’s changed. Or maybe we finally had enough time to catch our breath between ghost attacks to realize he’s been this hot all along. Personally, I credit his newly-minted babe status to that Jake Gyllenhaal-esque hair, but it could also be his Colin Jost-y face.

We also noticed that Carson’s girlfriend Karen hasn’t really been acting like his girlfriend at all since the pilot. It’s like the writers included Karen and Carson’s fling just to give Nancy an excuse to hate Karen, then totally forgot it ever happened. Even Riverdale can remember plot lines for at least two episodes before yeeting them into the ether, y’all. Still, if a single dropped plot point that we honestly might’ve just missed while fishing our phones from under the couch cushions is our biggest complaint, it looks like Nancy Drew season 1 is on a roller coaster that only goes up. Or, like, the Tower of Terror, that goes up and down a lot but in really compelling and scary ways. Either way, it’s a thrill ride.


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