Saying goodbye to the Nine Nine
With the Black Lives Matter rallies drawing attention to the plight of African Americans at the hands of police, the creators of Brooklyn Nine Nine had a difficult task in front of them: They needed to finish the show’s final season in a way that remained comedic but acknowledged that theirs was a program about a police precinct. Addressing this, and dealing with sending the show off, the creators were dealt a further blow when the COVID-19 pandemic saw Brooklyn Nine Nine’s final season cut down to nine episodes from the initial order of 10.
Thankfully, fans of the series are treated this season to probably the best send-off that the show could have, with a final episode that puts a bow on events that have been underway since season one. Plenty of guests show up, including a few that were previously written out. Beloved jokes are revisited, largely in ways that don’t grate or come across as repetitive.
The biggest criticism to be made about this season is that, due to the above-noted circumstances, the writing ‘shows’. Brooklyn Nine Nine has traditionally been a show that tackles issues regarding inequality, with a diverse cast playing characters that go directly against stereotypes. Perhaps it was the pressure that the creative team was under, but the usually natural dialogue about these topics goes out the window early in the season.
Thankfully, this issue largely rights itself a few episodes in, and the show has moments, even early in the season, where its commentary lands.
While Brooklyn Nine Nine’s fans will no doubt be sad to see the show end, seeing it receive a proper send-off is favourable to seeing it stick around for way too long. Fans looking for some succour could do worse than Netflix’s Never Have I Ever, which has a guest appearance from Andy Samberg and a number of subtle references to Brooklyn Nine Nine.
Brooklyn Nine Nine’s final season is streaming now on SBS On Demand.