As season 6 of Brooklyn Nine-Nine approaches, there are some big questions for fans of the cop comedy favourite. Questions like: Wasn’t that show cancelled? Is this the final season? Which key cast member is leaving with an epic send-off? Is it Captain Ray Holt? And when will we be able to finally read his facial expression?
Here, we answer of all those questions and more, with the caveat that no one on this planet we call Earth can answer the latter.
Where did we leave the cops of the Nine-Nine?
In the season 5 finale, we finally saw Detective Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg) and Detective Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero) tie the knot, but not before the “toit nups” were temporarily derailed by a bomb scare and Cheddar the Dog eating the wedding cake.
Meanwhile, Detective Rosa Diaz (Stephanie Beatriz), who had recently come out as bisexual, literally got “picked up” by rideshare driver Alicia (Gina Rodriguez) as a frisson of sexy, shampoo-commercial-style hair flinging and longing glances signalled a potential love match.
The finale’s cliffhanger though centred on the preternaturally expressionless Captain Holt and his reluctance to read an email that would reveal if he’d been given the plum job of police commissioner. In the episode’s last breaths, he looked up from his phone and said,
“Well, from the look on my face I’m sure you can guess what it says.”
Of course we couldn’t! A nod to the series’ running gag. Could this mean it’s exit precinct door left for Captain Holt in season 6?
So, Brooklyn Nine-Nine was axed and then un-axed in 30 hours. What happened there?
The biggest cliffhanger was what would become of Brooklyn Nine-Nine after it was unceremoniously axed on 10 May by US network Fox, just 10 days before the season 5 finale aired.
Fox gave the frustratingly vague reasoning of scheduling conflicts for the cancellation, but whatever the reason, fans of the show weren’t having it.
As news of its demise hit social media, there was a groundswell of devastation from fans swiftly followed by a campaign to have the comedy picked up by another network with #SaveB99 trending worldwide.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, TV executives from the likes of Hulu and Netflix were taking notice, with the creators of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Mike Schur and Dan Goor, fielding multiple offers for a resurrection. But it was NBC, whose sister studio Universal Television produces the show, that sealed the deal. In just over 30 hours, the comedy had been resurrected.
While several shows have been picked up by other networks after cancellation, such a quick turnaround is rare. It said much about the show’s avid following and the power of fans in the social media age.
“The internet flipped out,” Terry Crews, who plays Sergeant Terry Jeffords, told tonight show host Jimmy Kimmel.
“There has never been a greater example [than] the difference between Nielsen ratings and what people are actually watching [than] Brooklyn Nine-Nine. We had Guillermo del Toro, we had Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Hamill saying, ‘this is our favorite show, what are you doing?’”
Filming for season 6 kicked off on 21 August, with a joyful cast taking to Instagram to celebrate in suitably silly style with Crews, Samberg and Fumero pulling funny faces on set.
Will it be the same Brooklyn Nine-Nine we know and love?
The short answer is yes, mostly.
“The mandate from NBC all along is, we know this show, we love this show, that’s why we picked up this show, please keep making the same show,” Goor said at a Television Critics Association panel in August, according to Slash Film.
“In a lot of ways, I think it is the same type of show. I don’t want to say it’s the same show. I think it’s going to be even better this year,” he continued. “There are no substantive changes in terms of our approach to the show or anything else.”
But then early last month, Chelsea Peretti, who plays sarcasm-extraordinaire and administrative assistant Gina Linetti, announced on Twitter that she was stepping down as a regular cast member in season 6.
“I won’t be doing a full season of Brooklyn Nine Nine in Season 6,” she tweeted. “But that doesn’t mean I won’t ever be back, winky face emoji, heart emoji.”
In praising Peretti on her announcement, Goor reiterated that this isn’t the final curtain call for “the human embodiment of the 100 emoji.”
“I know for a fact this isn’t the last we’ll see of Gina Linetti,” he tweeted. “I mean, she got run over by a frickin’ bus, and she only missed like a week of work.”
But rest assured all other major cast members are clocking in for duty.
What can we expect in season 6 and will this be the (real) end for the Nine-Nine?
We’ll obviously find out the fate of Captain Holt, but an early teaser doesn’t really give away much of a clue with Jake doing a happy dance around his boss. Is he happy that he’s staying or going?
Samberg teased in an interview with Collider that there’ll be an episode dedicated to veteran detectives Hitchcock and Scully (Dirk Blocker and Joel McKinnon Miller), more about Rosa’s love life (the creators hope to secure Rodriguez to return) and a high school reunion featuring Jake and Gina.
There’ll be a #MeToo-themed episode directed by Beatriz and the annual Halloween Heist will be back.
We’ll also get an insight into Jake and Amy’s newly minted “childish marriage,” no doubt with a fair dose of one-upmanship.
“The day they combine their bank accounts is going to be a big day,” said Fumero at the Television Critics Association panel. “It’s going to be little stories like that that are going to be really fun to explore. What domestic life will they make new bets on and compete with?”
And according to Joe Lo Truglio, who plays Detective Charles Boyle, Jake’s bestie will want the pair procreating quick smart.
“Boyle wants more Jake. Or Jakettes,” he says.
And what will become of sass-pot Gina? We know only that it’ll be a fitting departure, one that Fumero calls “f**king epic”.
“It was bittersweet and sad and we definitely cried, [but they were] happy tears,” the actor told TV Line of shooting Peretti’s “final” scene.
And just as this may not be the end of Gina, season six may not be the end of Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
“One-hundred percent no,” Samberg told TV Line.
But, intriguingly, on the other hand, if it were to be the series’ swansong, the show’s star signalled the possibility of shooting three different endings!
Season six of Brooklyn Nine-Nine premieres Friday, 11 January at 8:30pm on SBS VICELAND and SBS On Demand.