The cold-open to last night’s episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine made me wish I worked somewhere that could be this fun. Yeah I know they are police officers and their lives are in danger. And sure most TV shows make the place you work look like a bore. But it still speaks to the fun nature and chemistry the detectives at the Nine-Nine share. The opening in question finds the officers trying to dispose of Scully’s shoes after he falls asleep. But the kicker is they are doing it with bomb squad gear! First Peralta is piloting one of those remote-controlled bomb disposal robots and then when that fails Boyle hops in one of the suits to get the job done. Oddly enough they decide to get rid of the shoes by blowing them up which doesn’t have the desired effect. This is the first 30 seconds of the show and it’s a riot. It doesn’t hurt that what seems like a random funny opener actually comes back and connects to the end in a small way with how they handle the book.
Once the episode starts proper, we find out Detective Peralta will be meeting his idol this week. Jimmy Brogan, the author of The Squad, inspired Jake to be a detective with his tales of the tough cops that patrolled the streets of the 70s by day and drank all night before rolling into their next shift (they just ate some coffee grounds to keep going… makes sense). In another bit of wonderful casting for this show, Brogan is played by Stacy Keach who fits well as a guy who drinks his scotch by the bottle and misses the good old days. This plot mostly sees Jake first trying to impress the man he looks up to and then ultimately seeing that he isn’t quite the guy he thought he was. Between some of Brogan’s stories about the old cops he wrote about and the reveal of the real reason Peralta ended up punching him out, there was a lot to like in this storyline. If nothing else, all the reminiscing about the past gave Holt an excuse to recount his first day as a detective. Everything from the dialogue (“Hello, I’m Raymond Holt.” “Are you here to turn yourself in?”) to Braugher having a chance to dress as 70s Holt to the slight zoom in on his reaction at the end made this one of my favorite moments of the show so far.
The B-plot was a winner as well and finds Rosa being coached on her courtroom demeanor by Sergeant Jeffords and Detective Boyle. This trio really worked well together. The contrast of Rosa’s attitude to her upbeat cohorts made this a lot of fun. I particularly loved the flashback to some of Diaz’s moments in the past on the stand and the reveal of her happy place at the end, but even little moments like Boyle’s laugh when he got a congratulatory punch from her were really good too.
More great bits from this episode:
- Peralta: “Is the sky just some big blue hat that the world wears?” Diaz: “No and no one has ever thought that.” Good stuff.
- I loved Holt manipulating Santiago. The smile on his face as he did so was classic. Her giddy reaction to it and just giving into it despite knowing what he was doing were equally great.
- The Pineapples nickname joke is the kind that grows on you. It didn’t get much of a reaction from me at first, but as it continued to come up I liked it more and more.
- I don’t like that Linetti just isn’t in random episodes… boooooo!
An excellent cold open, a great guest role for Stacy Keach and two great storylines made for another winner for Brooklyn Nine-Nine this week. This cast and writing continues to shine and the show feels like it is in a real groove now. “Old School” was another example of that.