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The Hardy Boys are pretty badass by today's standards. In an era where you can't show people getting punched on television, it's kind of shocking to read about two teenage boys being bombarded with tear gas or surviving an attempted drowning by divers skulking about the lake. The formula for a Hardy boys book dictates that there will be at least one fight scene per book, and good use is made of them.
Also, Chet was a Pretty Cool Guy, eh's fat but he doesn't afraid of anything. For a supposed comic relief, just seeing him keeping up with the heroes was neat.
I read sooo many of these from the public library as a kid.
I'm pretty sure new books in the series were published continuously from the 1920s to my childhood. So you'd get tone shifts from the boys taking Chet's jalopy to an automat and calling everyone "chums" to the Case Files where Joe was all angsty about terrorists blowing up his girlfriend.
I honestly prefer the old-school Hardy Boys. If that book series ever gets a point-n'-click game like the Nancy Drew series did, I would want it to be set in the 1920's, sepia tones, scratched film and all.
If memory serves, the very first book, "The Tower Treasure" opened with the boys playing chicken on their motorbikes.
There's a shelf full of these that used to belong to my dad at my grandparents' house. Never got around to checking them out. Sounds like I missed out.
I have some of my dad's old ones. The brown and the tan "tweed" variety. Some were quite good, actually, if you can overlook the whole ethnic stereotyping issue.
However, I am convinced whoever wrote the original "Twisted Claw" was high on crack. The island of runaway boys has especially Unfortunate Implications nowadays.
Also, am I the only girl here? Hardy Boys were awesome and action-packed...Nancy Drew was too quiet for me. At least the old ones were.
Pfftt, Nancy Drew was a wimp, always needing her boyfriend to rescue her. The Hardy Boys were much better, though I went to Christie pretty quickly and didn't read more than ten or so.
The original Hardy Boys stories were pretty cool. Back in high school, I tried to get into the new stories and they started getting really repetitive really quickly, so I gave up on them.
I skipped both Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys. I might have read one, or at most, three, of either. Then, I hit Christie, as well. And, that was that.
Um... I must have been 11.
I made a pretty good attempt at reading every single Hardy Boys (and Nancy Drew) book there was. Didn't enjoy the casefiles of either much, though you could see how both series was heading in that direction towards the end.
Strangely, my mother is a /huge/ Christie fan, but I never really got interested in the books. Happy to watch the various moving picture adaptions however. Went into sci-fi and fantasy and never looked back.
I loved Hardy boys, I must have read all of them, and the reboots. my favorites though, were the super mysteries where they teamed up with Nancy Drew and George and Bess.
I mean, they nearly got killed in every book, it was just so exciting. I loved them. I still ream them from time to time, though I've gone from "read everything!!!" to " read fantasy and the occasional mystery or historical fiction" hmmm.
I wonder if there's any good plot based hardy boys fanfiction. I'll have to check.
edited 6th Mar '14 10:02:29 PM by Ellowen
Nice to see the series being discussed here. Never thought anyone could remember it haha.
Anyways, as a kid, I always thought of 'em as a couple of cool spy kids with nigh invisible Plot Armor (still awesome though). Grew up with 'em along with Nancy Drew.
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