Jake Peralta's string of bad luck continues, as he gets hurt on the job in Brooklyn Nine-Nine Season 2 Episode 20. He's forced to take time off, but that doesn't go so well.
Meanwhile, Rosa and Captain Holt, the two most no-nonsense people in the precinct, are forced to spend time together outside of the job.
One of the great things about Brooklyn Nine-Nine is how well it embeds comedy in realism, in so many ways. This show is excellent at subverting and lampooning cop show tropes, like having a high-speed car chase stopped by NYC gridlock before it even started, or Jake wanting to slam his badge when being put on administrative leave but not being allowed to do so (there's paperwork!).
The very way Jake got hurt was a brilliant subversion of a classic action sequence trope: jumping from car to car. It looks so cool in the movies, but is incredibly improbable in real life. So the fact that Jake broke a lot of bones by stepping into a sunroof of a car was hilarious.
The realism is also in these characters. The characters are funny because they're absurd and neurotic, but their concerns always come from a real, heartfelt place. Such was the case with Jake Peralta this episode, as we learn that his hilarious workaholic nature stems from a very real incident.
Jake was resistant to taking time off even after breaking several bones in his body. Even him being hurt made for some great comedy; the scene where he tried to lift the box made me laugh till I cried. His ruse about Atlantic City was also hilarious, and you have to love a show that can make you laugh when someone gets hit by a car.
However, Jake's resistance to vacation stemmed from true conflict. The last time he took a vacation while working a case, his suspect got into a shootout that left two civilians dead. Suddenly, his neurosis about being at work was justified, and not so absurd anymore.
It's stories like this that make me love this show. These characters, however crazy they can be, are generally never treated as caricatures or joke machines. Amid the jokes, neuroses, quirks and social incompetence, they never fail to be whole people.
We saw some of that with Rosa and Captain Holt as well. These two characters are both stoic, deadpan and no-nonsense, so naturally they're both quite averse to making small talk. However, they're forced to make small talk in an attempt to avoid their personal lives awkwardly entwining with their work lives.
However, it's that very desperation to keep their personal lives separate that forces them into a conversation that is about as personal as you can get. Rosa, panicked that she might be pregnant, ends up confessing that to Captain Holt, who supports her through the panic.
The two characters realize that a little bit of personal knowledge about each other may not be such a bad thing, and thus two stoic, deadpan, no-nonsense people got a little bit friendlier with each other.
Amy and Gina round off the episode with a short but funny side story that involves a lot of quips about Amy's cooking, which we've known was bad since Brooklyn Nine-Nine Season 1's Thanksgiving episode. Their entire subway ride to Holt's house was one long laugh-out-loud moment, and Gina's had my favorite quote of the night:
Gina: Amy, all your cooking stinks, why would you even get involved with tuna and eggs?
- Charles has a new hobby – photography! Only Charles would try to make an art piece out of a stakeout.
- Scully's lurking around while Jake mentioned having sex while injured (and Jake and Terry's reactions to that) was awkward comedy at its finest.
- I lost track of all the ACDC acronyms – none were as cool as the band.
What did you think? Did you think Jake was justified after hearing his story?
Remember you can always get the laughs again when you watch Brooklyn Nine-Nine online!