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"While the Clock Ticked" is the thirteenth and final episode of season one of the 2020 Hulu original series The Hardy Boys.

Premise

Official episode premise for "While the Clock Ticked" from Hulu:

Frank and Chet find a way to rescue their friend without giving up the Estabrook piece of The Eye to Stacy, while Joe, Biff and Phil break into the Estabrook Estate looking for the missing piece, but they’re too late. The Hardy boys with Fenton’s help will have to find their way to the hidden Chamber to stop the Circle from reuniting The Eye what happens next changes everything for the Hardy boys!

Plot summary

Stacy has abducted Callie and restrained her to a chair in her family storehouse. Callie promises an smug Stacey she'll pay for what she’s done. Stacy then calls the Hardy residence and tells Joe to tell Frank to bring her the Estabrook piece of The Eye in exchange for Callie.

Frank and Gloria are in George’s study looking through his findings. Frank wonders when George told her about the Circle. She learned when she was Frank’s age. Frank asks if things would’ve turned out differently if he didn’t find The Eye. Gloria believes that The Eye corrupted her father. However, she doesn’t blame it for losing her father or her daughter. Gloria knows that Stacy’s going to come after their piece and says that they’ll be ready when she does. Frank then turns on the projector, which shines on the map on the wall. Joe then arrives to inform Frank that Stacy wants to make a trade for Callie and their piece of The Eye. Gloria is pleased to hear this, as it means that Stacy is desperate and bound to make a mistake. Gloria wants to negotiate with her. They can pretend to make an alliance and then trap her. While Frank and Gloria argue over their next move; Frank simply wants to give her the piece, but Gloria refuses, Joe steals back the key to the secret door.

Frank and Joe return home and plot their next move. Joe still has the fake piece he made to trick the Tall Man and proposes they use it to trick Stacy in exchange for Callie.

Mrs. Khan returns to the Bridgeport Motor Inn with Gloria’s taped confession of having killed Victor Nabokov and gives it over to Fenton and Rupert. They’ve come to an agreement. She provides them with evidence of Gloria’s crime then leaves Bridgeport, never to return. Kanika assures them that her time in the Circle is over, though she warns Fenton that there are pieces still in play and that his children may still be in danger. Fenton then tells Rupert to call Bridgeport Police Department, ask for Jesse Hooper, and play her the tape.

Chief Collig arrives at the Hardy residence in search of Frank. Callie went missing, and Frank was the last person seen with her. Chief Collig want to take him down to the station for questioning. Trudy claims that Frank isn’t home, so Ezra decides to hang around until Frank returns. Meanwhile, just upstairs, Frank and Joe sneak out the window.

Callie, Joe, Frank, Biff, Chet, and Phil plot their next move

An officer stops by Wilt's Deli during closing and asks if he’s seen Frank. Wilt claims he hasn’t. He then shuts the door and tells Frank, Joe, Chet, Biff, and Phil that they can come out now. He says that they can use the place for as long as they need so long as they don’t drink all his soda. They intend to make a swap for Callie with the fake piece that Joe made. Biff points out that Stacy most likely has the same radiation detector as the Tall Man. Phil explains that smoke detectors have small amounts of americium, making it only slightly radioactive. Just enough to trick the detector. And so they cut the americium out of multiple smoke detectors and tape them around Frank’s arm. Frank and Chet will go to get Callie while Joe, Biff, and Phil retrieve the real piece of The Eye from Gloria’s. Frank informs them that they’re to use the projector to pinpoint exactly where the chamber is located on the map as well.

Fenton returns home to find Chief Collig in the kitchen with Trudy. He claims that he needs to talk to Frank about Callie’s disappearance. Fenton asks how long ago did he become corrupt and start working for the Estabrooks. He then takes Collig upstairs and shows him all the evidence they’ve collected against him and the Circle of The Eye. They have recordings, letters, and even a signed confession from JB Cox. Fenton asks why Gloria is coming after Frank. In the face of defeat, he reveals that Gloria didn’t want Frank to interfere with her plans. Fenton then asks the chief what Gloria has over him.

Frank and Chet arrive at the warehouse. They meet with Stacy’s “aunt” and “uncle,” who hold Callie hostage. With the americium under his sleeve, the fake piece to The Eye registers as radioactive. So, they release Callie, who proceeds to leave with Frank and Chet.

Fenton questions why Trudy would allow for the boys to sneak out. She explains that she was trying to get them away from Chief Collig. Trudy didn’t have any other choice, as Fenton left them. So, the boys had to figure things out on their own. While Fenton was grieving the love of his life and investigating her death, Trudy explains that the boys had to grieve him too and that they’re just as determined to find out who killed Laura as anyone.

Phil arrives at the Estabrook estate and acts as a decoy so that Joe and Biff can sneak inside. He distracts Stefan, claiming that he’s collecting donations for the Bridgeport Sea Cadets.

Stacy lashes out at her bodyguards upon discovering that they were given a replica piece of The Eye.

Joe looks for the piece to The Eye while Biff unlocks the secret door to see if there is in fact a connection between the projector and the map. Joe unlocks Gloria’s safe, but the piece is no longer inside. Back inside the study, Biff discovers that Frank was right and that the projector provides the location of the Chamber of The Eye. Unfortunately, before they can get out, Gloria returns with Stefan. So, Joe shuts the bookcase back, locking Biff inside and he hides under her desk. Gloria sits The Eye on the desk and looks through her papers. She tells Stefan how Callie is no longer in play, meaning Frank and Joe intervened. Stacy realized that she can’t move ahead alone and called Gloria to form a truce. They’re to meet at Victor’s warehouse and then travel to the Chamber.

After Gloria leaves, Joe opens the bookcase back up but the door is locked and the key is inside with Biff. Joe is then joined by Phil. Inside the study, Joe tells Biff to search for an air vent. She finds one that leads to the other side of the hallway. Joe and Phil track the vent to the hallway outside of Gloria’s office. Biff slides the key down as far as she can but the vent makes a sharp turn, so Joe uses a wire hanger to extend around the corner and pull the key to him. With the key now in his possession, Joe is able to unlock the door and free Biff. She’s so grateful that she hugs Joe.

Frank, Callie, and Chet wait at Wilt’s for Joe, Biff, and Phil. Eventually, they arrive. They managed to pinpoint to the location of the Chamber, but Gloria has The Eye with her. And she’s going to the Chamber to put The Eye back together with Stacy. Fenton finds them and tells everyone to go home. He then asks Frank what their plan is.

Gloria arrives at the Chamber of The Eye with Stefan, and Stacy, with her bodyguard.

While looking for the Chamber of The Eye, Frank, Joe, and Fenton realize that they’re being followed. However, it’s only Callie, who wants revenge for Stacy kidnapping her.

Joe, Fenton, Frank, and Callie arrive at the Chamber of The Eye

Stacy places her two pieces of The Eye into the Chamber. Just as Gloria is about to connect the final piece, Frank, Joe, Fenton, and Callie arrive. Fenton reveals that they have her on tape admitting to having killed Stacy’s father. Stacy’s uncle attempts to steal Gloria’s piece, but Stefan intervenes. Stacy grabs the piece but drops it after being punched by Callie. So, then Joe picks it up but loses it to Gloria who puts the final piece of The Eye in the chamber, uniting the three pieces for the first time in decades to reforge it as The Eye. Frank tries to separate it, but he is too late. The Eye is forged back together and releases a blast of energy as Frank holds on to it.

Frank lays unconscious on the ground as Joe and Fenton plead with him to wake up. The Eye shows Frank the events leading up to his mother’s death. First, he sees Laura’s fight with Gloria after she heard that the Astghik found their piece of The Eye. Gloria claims that she won’t make the same mistake as those before her, but Laura doesn’t believe it’s true and doesn’t trust the fate of the world in the hands of three people. Laura tells her mother that the world will know about The Eye in less than 24 hours. Gloria warns Laura that she won’t be able to protect her anymore if she exposes the Circle.

Laura says goodbye to Wilt

Frank finds himself at Wilt’s, where Laura tells the shopkeeper about her fight with her mother. She tells him that she has a meeting and after that, Frank’s game. As she’s leaving, Wilt tells her to not let another decade past before her next visit.

Lastly, Frank sees his mom and Rupert discussing their next move. Laura tells him that she called her editor and that they’ll go to press end-of-day, and by the morning, the exposé should be in the stands by the morning. Rupert fears that the Circle will come after her. Laura thinks they’ll be too engulfed in chaos to worry about her, as they’re not united. She mentions how the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing.

The explosion from The Eye has shaken the mines and is causing it to collapse. Frank awakens and tells Joe and their dad that he saw their mother. He reveals that he saw the argument Gloria had with Laura the day she died. Gloria knew she was in danger and did nothing to protect her. Frank accuses her of choosing The Eye over her own daughter. With the mines coming less stable with each passing moment, Stacy’s uncle carries her out on his shoulder. Stefan comes to Gloria’s defense, claiming Laura made her choice and that Gloria had no idea what would happen. Frank recalls his mother saying that the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing, suggesting that Stefan killed Laura without Gloria's knowledge. Stefan admits that he killed her to protect Gloria because she was going to expose the Circle and ruin everything that Gloria had worked for. With the Chamber coming down on top of them, they are forced to exit, but Stefan goes back to get The Eye, however, he is crushed by falling debris as the ground around him behind to cave in.

Meanwhile, Frank, Joe, Fenton, and Gloria make it back to surface level, where the police await, and Jesse arrests Gloria for Victor Nabokov’s murder.

The following morning, the Hardys gather for breakfast. Trudy says that she’s going to miss them when they move back to Dixon City. Fenton takes this opportunity to inform her that after talking it over with Frank and Joe, they’ve decided to stay in Bridgeport for a while.

Jesse places Gloria in a cell next to former chief, Ezra Collig.

Frank, Joe, Callie, Chet, Biff and Phil gather in the attic, where Callie reveals that she chased Stacy into the woods, where she escaped in a van. Joe tells his friends that they can’t tell anyone outside of their circle what happened. The others decide to take off and tell Frank and Joe to join them at Wilt’s after they are done cleaning up the mess from their investigation. Callie stays behind, and Frank tells her that they’re going to stay in Bridgeport for a while. She then kisses him and leaves. Once everyone is gone, Joe gifts Frank with their mom’s music boy, which he managed to restore. Fentons joins them and says that their mom would’ve been proud of them both.

Joe enters his room and finds a CB radio sitting on his bed with a note from JB, apologizing for leaving without saying goodbye.

The military have made their way to Bridgeport to investigate the collapse and clean up the mess in the mines, where they uncover The Eye.

Meanwhile, Frank and Joe ride their bikes to Wilt’s to meet up with their friends for ice cream.

Appearances

Cast and characters

Starring

Co-starring

Locations and organizations

Quotes

  • Gloria to Frank: When I was a little girl, I would lie in bed at night, and I could hear the sound of it coming through the vents. That's how I knew my father was in this room.
  • Gloria to Frank: But when you're in possession of something so much greater than you are... I think it corrupted him. It changed him. But I don't blame The Eye for losing my father. Or your mother. An object in and of itself can't be good or bad.
  • Kanika to Fenton: My time in the Circle is over. I assure you of that. A warning, though. There are pieces still in play in this town where your children, half-Estabrooks, live. So, a word to the wise, Mr. Hardy. The Eye. People have done unthinkable things for it.
  • Trudy to Fenton: You're grieving the love of your life. You had to go figure out what happened to her. But when you left, the boys also have to grieve you, too. And I know that you're super cop, and you work alone, but right now, those boys are just as desperate to find out what happened to their mother as you are. So stop pushing everyone away... and help them.

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