Can We Just Cancel ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’?

Brooklyn Nine-Nine is struggling to figure out how to move forward in light of the very sudden realization by large swatch’s of the population that most police are bad and most police departments are incurably corrupt. I have a suggestion for how the show should move forward: don’t.

You might think I don’t like Brooklyn Nine-Nine, but you’d be wrong. I absolutely adored the early seasons for a number of reasons, especially the portrayal of Captain Holt’s early days on the force as some sort of 70s cop drama that never existed full of colorfully-named criminals and catch phrases. But as the show has gone on, it’s been more and more difficult to keep that magic alive. Plots became less interesting, all the will they, won’t theys either did or didn’t and while watching the characters grow has been interesting, it’s also left them with less story potential than they had early on.

Here’s what star Andy Samberg told People about the current struggles the show is having.

“We’re taking a step back, and the writers are all rethinking how we’re going to move forward, as well as the cast,” Samberg, 41, tells PEOPLE. “We’re all in touch and kind of discussing how you make a comedy show about police right now, and if we can find a way of doing that that we all feel morally okay about.”

“I know that we’ll figure it out, but it’s definitely a challenge, so we’ll see how it goes,” adds the actor, who plays Det. Jake Peralta.

The answer is simple. Don’t. 143 episodes over seven seasons is nothing to be ashamed of. The show ending with Jake and Amy’s baby being born would be fine, the show was mostly about those two characters and their dynamic anyway.

At its core, Brooklyn Nine-Nine is an irreverent workplace comedy like The Office or WKRP in Cincinnati, only the workplace is a police precinct. This has allowed them to do stories based around the tropes of police procedurals as well as to use their structure. It’s fun to watch characters like Jake Peralta who are goofy idiots but are still highly competent and good at their job.

We’ve just all seen what that job is, and it involves a lot of improperly shooting people in the face with rubber bullets to permanently blind them because they were protesting all the other horrible s**t you’ve done.

I don’t blame the writers and actors on Brooklyn Nine-Nine for not wanting to be the people to put an “aw shucks, we’re just trying to help people” spin on that.

The problem is that you can’t be an irreverent workplace sitcom about the lovable goofs down at the police station and also be the show that seriously addresses topical issues of police brutality. It’s an impossibility. Scrubs and How I Met Your Mother could balance comedy and drama because they were able to unambiguously portray their leads as the good guys. Brooklyn Nine-Nine worked because the cops we saw on the show were the good guys who worked against the corrupt cops. If you’re uncomfortable presenting the cops as good guys, you can’t make an irreverent workplace comedy about cops.

But there’s nothing to be ashamed of. The show had a good run, produced some memorable characters and had some really funny episodes. It’s time to move on. You don’t want your eighth season to be the same as Scrubs’ ninth season.

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