Frank & Joe team up with Nancy Drew again in Los Angeles to attend the 14th Annual Detectives' Convention at a TV & movie studio. Joe pursues an illusory figure through the back lot of the studio's stage 24.
Nancy and famous criminologist Arlo Wetherly find mutilated photos of themselves.
Margo Bently is writing her first book, the contents of which could prove very damaging to a certain group of people. She is murdered and brought into the lab as a suspected alcoholic prostitute with cirrhosis but Quince thinks the body is telling him something different about her social standing. Quince is asked to present a seminar in Bufflo NY by Asten, while he's preparing his notes Asten takes over in the lab. In Quincys absence, Asten signs the body out to a phoney coroner and Quincy begins tracking her down. This leads him to a murdered literary agent in New York a race to autopsy him before he's cremated so he can prove a link.
Monahan wants someone to examine a body that he thinks is involved in 'smuggling' gems, a woman about to be autopsied is surprisingly found to be alive and Dr. Quincy is nowhere to be found. In his place is the brilliant, strict and feared Dr. Hiro.
A secret submarine, the murder of a Navy officer and strange amnesia create a puzzling case for Steve McGarrett.