The Hardy Boys are back and spookier than ever.
The series, which returns Monday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on YTV, leans into the supernatural for its sophomore season. Picking up six months after the events of Season 1, the 10 episodes follow Frank (Rohan Campbell) and Joe Hardy (Alexander Elliot) as they investigate a missing classmate and the odd circumstances surrounding it. Before long, Frank, Joe, Callie (Keana Lyn), Chet (Adam Swain), Phil (Cristian Perri) and Biff (Riley O’Donnell) are plunged into a case where no one can be trusted.
We spoke to Chris Pozzebon—who joined The Hardy Boys for its second season as co-showrunner and head writer—about what fans can expect.
This is your first season on The Hardy Boys. How did you end up on the show?
Chris Pozzebon: They were looking for a head writer and co-showrunner. I had just moved back to Canada from Los Angeles when the pandemic was kind of ramping up and this kind of came about. And I guess it was a right fit for everybody.
It was pretty simple. I was available and interested, and they liked me. And I was able to pitch out a version of Season 2 that I think everybody responded to and that we all collaborated on with the networks. It was very fortuitous for me just to be in the conversation because I was such a huge fan of the books as a kid and just The Hardy Boys brand in general. So it was a very cool thing to start doing when a global pandemic hit.
What else excited you about the project?
CP: I had been working on a show that I loved, Blindspot for NBC, and that show was massive. And you’re working with these FBI agents who are like these big adult heroes. The thing that Blindspot didn’t have was that element of magic, actual magic. I mean, the show was magic on its own, but when I found out that The Hardy Boys had a supernatural element to it that wasn’t in the books, I was like, ‘Oh, well, that’s really interesting to me.’ The Hardy Boy‘s brand was always mystery and adventure.
At first, seemingly, part of the mystery was always debunked. Right? That ghost howling in the wood was always like, oh, it was an owl. And it was screeching because bank robbers were out there. They figure it out.
What was appealing about this version of the show was that it actually could be a ghost in the woods this time. Season 1 was a slow burn towards that reveal. But once we established that, I was really excited. Just kind of going full force into the possibility of the supernatural, even if some things may not be what they seem.
On Monday’s return, Frank experiences dreams and visions. Was that something hammered out in the writer’s room organically?
CP: It was part of the big Season 2 pitch. It was looking at where we ended last season and thinking about how to lean into that magic and mythology and the eye relic that they find as a central part of the show. It was about still keeping that mystery and that magic connected personally to our characters, not just starting fresh with a new adventure. It’s always with an eye towards the past and the backstory.
But at the same time, we did want to build in an actual new mystery. It’s not just the visions that Frank’s having and the supernatural stuff that stems from Season 1 that is going to be the throughline. There is a brand new mystery afoot.
I mentioned this to co-showrunner Jason Stone last year when we chatted. I love the 80s setting and all that entails.
CP: That’s kind of the appeal for the people making the show too, is that you get to include these little nods to your own youth and you can separate yourself from the technology today and the way people would solve history today and focus on other avenues to solve a mystery. And it allows being in that time and helps our young folks and the heroes of the show pursue actual clues that aren’t just punched away on their cell phones.
In Episode 1, a fellow student goes missing. By the end, there are teases about the eye, as well as something going on in an abandoned mine. Is that all part of the A-story this season?
CP: Everything is wrapped into each other. What’s going on with Dennis is the main focus. What’s going on with the eye plays into the main focus. Both of those things are kind of just the beginning. The story is going to take twists and turns that we don’t even allude to in Episode 1.
That said, those are the through lines and it is all deeply connected. And one of the things that we really wanted to do was just start building out the world. We are introduced to some shady characters and some people we can’t trust, maybe who are closer to us. That was just something that we felt we could push a little further in the second season.
Who else did you have in the writers’ room with you aside from yourself and Jason?
CP: It was myself, Ramona Barckert, Laura Seaton, Madeleine Lambur, Sabrina Sherif, Heather Taylor, Nile Seguin and Michael Hanley.
What is your strength in the writing room?
CP: I think finding a way to make an absolutely bonkers idea work would be my strength. You got to be good at everything, but, I mean, no, one’s going to pitch a crazier idea than me. That’s both a blessing and a curse.
The Hardy Boys airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on YTV.
Images courtesy of Corus Media.