Tuesday, January 14, 2014

REVIEW: 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' Pairs Jake & Amy Up Again in 'The Bet' - Plus Drops Some Epic Truth Bombs

FOX's Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Episode 1.13 The Bet

Jake and Amy's ongoing bet about who can make more arrests comes to a close. Meanwhile, Charles receives the Medal of Valor for getting shot in the line of duty, but the pain medication he is taking causes him to reveal his true opinions about his colleagues.

The pilot for Golden Globe winner of Best Comedy Series Brooklyn Nine-Nine set up pent up sexual tension between Andy Samberg's Jake and Melissa Fumero's Amy. That idea was propelled even further by the creation of an ongoing bet to see who could get the most felony arrests in one year's time. It was a construct for the pilot - not exactly an idea I needed or wanted to see predominantly in the series going forward.

But as the first season developed, the show quietly shied away from the pairing of Jake and Amy - in order to better bring out the great supporting elements on the show. In turn, both characters became more interesting because they were both given individual personalities that were both funny and easily relatable. The bet between them only got mentioned once or twice more in the 11 episodes between "Pilot" and "The Bet."

So now, the show feels better established and grounded to ask whether or not a Jake and Amy pairing can fuel creative stories in the future. So, the Bet returns with Amy quickly losing and having to go on a date with Jake - which he spends so much money on intending for it to be the worst date possibly even though there are clear romantic undertones. While I still think the show is pushing those two together just to have a core romantic pairing in the cast, so much of what happens in "The Bet" really works. Once the stakeout starts, it feels like two mature characters discussing things and having a pleasant good time with each other - while snacking and staking out bad guys.

The supporting elements also had yet another strong episode as well - with both Boyle and Holt dropping truth bombs to much comedic effect. Rosa and Boyle is another romantic pairing being forced a little too much - and yet Boyle's honesty on how he wants to win her over for doing something as him was pretty great.

Some more thoughts:
  • Between Peanut Butter and Parks and Recreation's Lil' Sebastian, Mike Schur and Dan Goor have a big interest in celebrity horses.
  • From Mangy Carl last week to an arguing couple this week, Jake should get to play a different identity every week during a different sting operation.
  • And a big welcome to Merrin Dungey who joins the deep ensemble as Terry's wife.
  • Finally doing his executive session at the TCA press tour yesterday, FOX President Kevin Reilly all but said that a second season for Brooklyn Nine-Nine is only a formality. Yeah!