Thursday, April 2, 2020

REVIEW: 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' - Jake Hopes to Break the Family Curse While Amy Deals with a Sensitive Case in 'Admiral Peralta'

NBC's Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Episode 7.10 "Admiral Peralta"

Jake and his father deal with unsettled family business. Amy and Rosa work a high-profile case. Terry wants to join the NYPD band.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of NBC's Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

"Admiral Peralta" was written by Neil Campbell and directed by Linda Mendoza

It's a boy! Jake and Amy are expecting a baby boy. That is a huge celebration here. Of course, the show has to find a way to mine conflict and comedy out of that situation as well. It shouldn't be too difficult regarding gender reveal parties because they are constantly going awry. It just happens to be notable that no one in the precinct is all that surprised when Jake and Amy announce that they are pregnant. It turns out that Amy wasn't doing a great job at hiding it. She tried her best. It was a struggle to get pregnant in the first place. Her friends were a part of that journey as well. So, this should be a moment of catharsis where everyone can celebrate the joy that comes from the creation of new life. Instead, it's all about Jake needing someone to have an extreme reaction. Charles is always reliable for that. In the end though, Jake has to make up the fake news of having twins just to elicit a response. That's unfortunate but everyone is still fundamentally happy for the expecting couple. The core plot of the episode though extends from Jake realizing that he comes from a lineage of exceptionally poor fathers. He already knew that because Roger abandoned the family when Jake was young, which still produces lingering issues for Jake as an adult. Their relationship has been mended some. They are capable of sitting down and having a conversation. That's a step further than what Roger has with his own father. Jake has never had a meaningful relationship with his grandfather. Roger also felt abandoned as a child. As such, this family seems cursed by repeating the same patterns with each new generation. That has gotten into Jake's head on a number of occasions. Long before Amy got pregnant, Jake was worried about how he would be as a father. He didn't know if he could excel in that role because he didn't have a person he could look up to as the ideal for what a good father should be. He has gone on this journey with her though. It was difficult at first. But now, things present as smooth sailing. They may not be. There can always be uncertainty regarding pregnancies as well as the massive change that comes after actually having the baby. Jake and Amy are preparing for that future now. Jake is still childish in a lot of ways. He wants to maintain the secrecy of the baby's gender even after his family knocks over the reveal cake. That just winds up creating an even larger mess. Again, that highlights how this family is similar in so many ways. They may not have been in each other's lives a whole lot. However, they have similar reactions to any particular situation. Sure, Roger cutting his thumb off has become a recurring joke for him. Jake is horrified at the idea that his father now has claws for hands. That isn't good. In all of the chaos, he even forgets that Amy is left in the dark about the big reveal. When she cuts into the cake, it's green. That doesn't mean anything. It takes a third cake in order for her to be just as happy as Jake is in this moment. It didn't really matter one way or the other if they were having a boy or a girl. The effort put into the reveal party mostly just showcases how much Jake cares about being a parent which is a step in the right direction to reverse the apparent curse that has plagued his family for generations. That is the most consistent story of this episode. Sure, it probably sidelines Amy too much as well. She deserved to be a more prominent player. However, her story with Rosa, Hitchcock and Scully has a strong underlying idea. It's easy for the detectives to write off Hitchcock and Scully as incompetent in their jobs. However, they actually do care when an undocumented immigrant doesn't want to testify in a case because of the fear of being deported afterwards. Rosa and Amy actually appreciate that and see the duo in a new light. It's a story that probably could have used some more complexity though. It's a subject that is incredibly important. Police and immigrant communities have a very tenuous dynamic at the moment that is always in flux. This story makes it seem a little too secondary. But it's more effective than what Terry and Holt get to do here. That story mostly boils down to the fun moment of Holt repeatedly calling Terry a garbage man when he is simply trying to play the "Muffin Man" on the flute. And in the end, it wasn't worth any of the effort for Terry to get accepted into the NYPD band. The joy of seeing him in a parade is an enticing image at least even though it doesn't occur here.