Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Season 2, Episode 12, “Beach House”
January 4th, 2015, 8:30 PM, FOX
Granted a half-day off, the squad takes off for its annual officers-only weekend at Charles’ beach house, but Jake ruins the casual atmosphere by inviting Holt because he feels guilty that his boss has never experienced peer bonding time with his colleagues before. Holt’s stolid and taciturn ways immediately clash with the rollicking party atmosphere, turning the whole event stodgy and formal, and things soon get awkward. This causes Jake to suggest they quarantine Holt in another room, splitting the party into ‘boring’ and ‘fun’ sections. Meanwhile, Charles tries to teach Rosa how to show her boyfriend a softer side of her personality when her prickly attitude prevents her from showing gratitude, leaving Charles to becomes Rosa’s texting Cyrano de Bergerac; and, hoping to find ‘her sasquatch’ and a friendship with Santiago, Gina tries to meet “six-drink Amy”. Naturally eager to please, Amy immediately starts drinking, cycling through her typical drunkenness scale, but six drink Amy…is not a party person.
There’s nothing funnier than watching the squad struggle with their off-duty interactions (okay, watching them try to tame perps is also a fun bonus). This is a classic workplace comedy trope at work, a variation on the typical “everyone leaves the office for the weekend for a vacation and things go badly” plot; Murphy Brown tucked its cast on a boat every once in awhile, Mary Richards had her dinner parties and I hope the Nine Nine will always have Charles’ beach house.
I love that this show never, ever forgets how hard a time a man like Holt would have had coming up in the ranks in the seventies and early 80s. Even in the supremely silly world of the Nine-Nine, Holt has scars, and they shape and mold his personality. The best part of Jake is his humanity, and the twosome’s mentorship relationship continues to flourish beautifully. The squad loves its boss, and the boss is coming to love his ragtag squad.
Speaking of flourishing, how great was it to see Charles and Rosa working together to get Rosa and her boyfriend on a romantic weekend? It’s a far cry from his quasi-creepystalking her last season; this fits much more with Charles’ romantic self to be Rosa’s mentor instead of her desperate pursuer. Unfortunately Nick Cannon’s Marcus remains a cipher. I only hope that he’ll be given more of a personality in the remainder of his scheduled appearances.
The Amy/Gina bonding plot is a unique one; seeing the always-proper, straight-laced and composed Amy drunk was fun, and the storyline finally managed to add layers to Gina.
I have to mention that I love this new twist in Scully and Hitchcock’s personalities. In a lesser sitcom they would have remained clueless victims and objects of scorn (this remains Parks and Recreation’s weakest spot when it comes to Larry/Jerry); lately the show’s decided their cluelessness is simply something of a put-on, that they’re two incredibly inept conmen under the surface. This makes their bumbling more tolerable – and keeps them properly sitcom-level schemers.
“Beach House is yet another strong outing for Brooklyn Nine Nine. Hilarious, touching, the right kind of sentimental – if not particularly groundbreaking.
- Jake using his prodigious powers of deduction to figure out that Holt wasn’t wearing pants due to a soup-related accident, and then trying to trick him into revealing his underwear – is probably the most Jake-encapsulating moment in the show’s history thus far.
- Low points in Charles’ life: gets custody of the beach house he shares with his wife in the winter months only; calls his ex-wife ‘mommy’ unconsciously; ends up sleeping on the floor of his own house when Holt arrives.
- Gina actually makes a pass at Terry in this episode. Sort of.
- Ladies and Gentlemen: the Santiago Drunkenness Scale, in its full glory, pre-weekend: 1 Drink Amy: A bit spacey; 2 drink Amy: loud Amy, 3 drink Amy: Amy dance pants, 4 drink Amy is “a bit of a pervert”; 5 drink Amy is weirdly confident.
- Nick Cannon appears again as Rosa’s boyfriend (and Holt’s Nephew). Marcus.
- Scully and Hitchcock have an offshore casino that’s sunken to the bottom of the ocean and are looking for investors to have it raised.
- There’s a shockingly large amount of Amy/Rosa ship bait in this episode. I approve.
- It’s completely impossible for Andre Braugher to avoid looking like the smoothest, classiest guy in the room, isn’t it?
- And Fox Mobile is finally putting Kwazy Kupcakes out as an actual, playable iphone game! http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2015/01/02/brooklyn-nine-nine-mobile-game-to-launch-january-3rd/345416/
- Next Week: The whole gang tries to get Jake to pay up on his multiple years-long debts to them and Holt and Amy re-open an arson case Holt thought he’d solved years ago in “Payback”.
Another fun episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine loaded with found family feelings; we get to see lots of different characters bond with one another in fresh ways, and the jokes are just plain hilarious as always.