Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Undercover (2×01)
Synopsis: Jake returns from his undercover mission, but immediately goes back in after finding out one of the mafiosos got away. Holt forces the squad to do practice drills for no apparent reason. Gina prepares herself for everyone to find out she slept with Boyle.
The Nine-Nine is back and it feels so good!
‘Undercover’ opens with… well… Jake Peralta undercover. In case you missed the finale or my catchup post, Peralta has been undercover for the past six months as part of a FBI investigation on the Ianuchi crime family. It looks like he’s gotten in good with them too because the Ianuchis seem quite fond of Peralta, even inviting him to a big (and quite cheesy looking) wedding. However, the happiness is not long for this world, because Peralta soon busts them with help of the Nine-Nine, reuniting him with Sergeant Jeffords and Captain Holt for the first time in months. To which I say: YAY!
Peralta returns to the precinct the next day and gets a rundown on everything that has happened in the six months he’s been away. Diaz claims that there were only three interesting things: Jeffords chipped a tooth and talked with a lisp for the week (Terry Crews talking with a lisp is way cuter than it should be), Santiago and Boyle wore the same outfit to the office one day, and Holt has banned headphones after “The Gina Incident” involving an aggressive perp and ultra loud j-pop. Or is it k-pop? I didn’t immediately recognize the song, so some help on that would be fantastic.
Peralta pulls Santiago aside for a private conversation regarding his confession six months before, but she tells him that she’s still with Teddy. This causes Jake to immediately backpedal and tell her that he didn’t mean it. Which is bull, of course, but Jakey doesn’t deal with his feelings well. As evidenced by the fact he talks more about the perp Santiago arrested named Joe Uterus.
Everything seems set to transfer Peralta back into the NYPD, but he finds out that one of the targets named Freddie Maliard escaped custody. This concerns Peralta since Freddie is the worst of all of them, so he decides to go back undercover despite Holt telling him that sometimes things are out of his control. Again, all because he can’t deal with feelings. Also, apparently mafiosos bond over Billy Joel karaoke. Well alright then.
With Boyle’s “help” (said loosely because Boyle’s version of help involves the phrase “wet mouth”), Peralta manages to find out that Freddie hasn’t skipped town and is getting stuff sent to one of his girls Bianca, who’s played by the gorgeous Jenny Slate that I have an absolute crush on. Bianca figures out that Jake is a cop and refuses to tell him where Freddie went, but that changes after Jake sings a jaunty tune that reveals that Freddie was also sleeping with her sister. She tells Jake that he’s heading to Barbados, but Jake ends up being too late to catch him. He tries to comfort himself by cleaning out his desk, but it’s full of maggots and hella gross. And this is the same desk that was home to a rat named Algernon at one point. Still, Boyle comforts him by telling him he should be proud of the work he managed to get done. Then spoils his surprise party at the bar for him. Oh Charles…
At the bar, Peralta gets Holt to deliver the most awkwardly Holt speech ever, but that’s kind of disrupted when he tells Peralta he’s proud of him. Awwww. He then follows it up with confessing to Amy that he did actually mean what he said six months before. It’s actually a very healthy conversation the two have. Jake doesn’t expect anything to happen, but he wants to be open and honest with Amy about how he feels. Amy recognizes his feelings, but tells him that on no uncertain terms that nothing will happen as long as she’s with Teddy. Open and honest conversations about romantic feelings on a sitcom where no one’s feelings are invalidated or expecting someone to drop everything for the other? Have I fallen into a slightly more awesome parallel universe watching this episode?
He also tops that off with a new Santiago sex tape name: “I’m with someone. Nothing’s going to happen.” Who knew a running gag about sex tapes would make me so happy?
Meanwhile in the B-Plot, the Captain has Santiago and Diaz running drills on various situations that could happen to the department. This basically involves Jeffords, a white board, and various embarrassing situations. Is it bad my favorite is Terry as an angry prostitute, followed by him as a very angry seven year old? However, the team doesn’t know why Holt is making them do all these drills and he refuses to explain why until after he catches the three of them playing in a bounce house to wear “Timmy” out. I said last season my dream was to chest bump Terry Crews, but now it’s to play in a bounce house with him.
Holt reprimands Jeffords, but Jeffords calls him out, saying that the team was just doing their job and that they’d really love to know why they have to do these drills. Holt confesses that there’s a new commissioner coming into the NYPD and he has no idea what they’re going to drop on the 99, so he wants them to be as prepared as possible. The whole ordeal has been stressing him out, and Kevin says he hasn’t seen him smile in weeks. Confusing reads off of Holt aside, Jeffords points out that not knowing what his bosses are planning is driving him crazy. This makes Holt smile again. I think. Look, he says he’s smiling. Just roll with it.
The third plot in this episode involves Gina and Boyle. With Jake back in the office, Gina becomes concerned that Boyle will tell Jake that they slept together. She resigns herself to this and begins acting like a social pariah by hanging out with Scully and Hitchcock and making her new “spirit animal” the naked mole rat (aka “God’s mistake”) instead of the wolf. I worry people are going to get stuck on this part, not realizing that Gina is intentionally written to be a terrible person who sticks the term “spirit animal” on anything.
However, Boyle doesn’t fess up! Partially because he doesn’t want to hurt Gina’s feelings, but also because he fears what she’ll do to him. The two toast to their problems being over, then immediately sleep together again. Oh dear. This is going to be a thing, huh?
Honestly, I don’t think I could have asked for a better season opener for this show. Even with Peralta being gone for six months, it feels like the team hasn’t missed a beat with their bizarre police lives. ‘Undercover’ also happens to show Brooklyn Nine-Nine strengths with the shows friendships and having honest and healthy conversations. How does this show exist and how is it so good?
Also, Kyra Sedgewick guest stars next week. GET HYPED, Y’ALL.