Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys Return in a New Dynamite Series

NANCY DREW HARDY BOYS VOLUME 1: THE BIG LIE
978-1524104177, $19.99
Release Date: 11/21/2017 

THE BIG LIE is a Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mystery unlike any other you've ever read...

When the teenage brothers Frank and Joe Hardy are accused of the murder of their father - a detective in the small resort town of Bayport - they must team up with the femme fatale Nancy Drew to prove their innocence (and find the real guilty party in the process) in a twisting, hard-boiled tale, complete with double-crosses, deceit and dames.
  
Inspired by new crime classics like Ed Brubaker's Fatale and Darwyn Cooke's Parker series, writer Anthony Del Col (Assassin's Creed, Kill Shakespeare) and artist Werther Dell'Edera (Batman: Detective Comics, House of Mystery) bring the iconic teen detectives into the modern age, and redefine noir for a new generation of readers!

Diamond interviews writer Anthony Del Col about the new Nancy Drew series.


Diamond Books: The Hardy Boys are accused of killing their father? And Nancy Drew is a femme fatale instructing them on how to clear their names? What inspired this unique take?

Anthony Del Col: Like many readers, I was blown away by the Afterlife with Archie series, and how they were able to tell new stories of well-known characters by placing them in a completely new scenario (a zombie genre). So my mind immediately went to Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys, books that, like Archie, I read quite a bit when young. And I had a vision of these "goody-goody" characters suddenly suspected of murder, and wanted to tell that story in a hardboiled noir style.

You're not only the writer of the project (which is an undertaking in and of itself, of course), but you were also instrumental in making this project come together at the outset. Why don't you give us some detail on your participation?

Normally a publishing company finds a property, licenses it, and then hires the creative team to tell that story. In this case, I had the idea of putting Ms. Drew and the Hardy brothers in a hardboiled noir adventure, went out, started working with the licensing agent and Simon & Schuster, and then discovered Dynamite was the right home for the project. As a result, I think the series is going to feel a lot more creator-driven, which I think is a good thing for readers and fans.

What appeals to you so much about these classic characters, and the dynamic between them?

I really liked the idea of taking these "wholesome” characters and throwing them into a completely different environment. They're now criminal suspects, and in order to clear their names they realize they need to "go bad". How do they react? Will the two brothers' stay close? Is Nancy really in control? And would a love triangle emerge?

Okay, think about what's out there in the comic book marketplace, or in the general pop culture landscape. Now, fill in the blanks and then give us your thoughts on why! "If you're a fan of        , you’ll love Nancy Drew & The Hardy Boys: The Big Lie."

The initial inspiration was Afterlife with Archie, but then others emerged: Darwyn Cooke's Parker series, Darwyn and Ed Brubaker's Catwoman redo (I'm fortunate to have Matt ldelson, the editor of that series, working on this one!), and Ed Brubaker’s noir stuff from Image (Fatale, The Fadeout).

All comics telling great hardboiled stories. In addition, classic film noirs like The Big Sleep, The Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity, and the Rian Johnson film Brick.

Crime drama has been on the rise lately in comics. There’s Goldie Vance at BOOM! Studios. Brubaker is doing Velvet at Image. Both of these books feature women as the main characters. But now you’re bringing one of the most timeless of female detectives back into the fold, and you’re doing it in the vein of “hardboiled noir.” So what makes your story so gritty? How is it a departure from Nancy Drew mysteries in prose, or what some of us might have seen on the old TV show?

What makes this story so gritty? We throw these iconic characters into the seedy underworld of modern-day smalltown America, which includes illegal gambling operations, gangs, murder and online crime. But more than that, these characters have to “go bad” in order to clear their names.

Traditionally, the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books have been written for younger audiences. That’s when I first read them: when I was about 8 or 9 years old. But the characters stayed with me for all these years and I started to get an itch to figure out how I could tell a story with these characters that would interest older audiences, much like the Afterlife with Archie series did.

So that’s why I figured I should put these iconic characters into a new genre: hardboiled noir. And immediately I figured that they could start off as tropes of the genre: the brothers as accused criminals trying to clear their names, and Nancy Drew as a femme fatale. But as we delve deeper into this story we realize they’re actually the same as they originally were, but now need to figure out if they can return to their roots in this new world.

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