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Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Moo Moo - Review + POLL

When you think about what it means to have a "perfect" episode of TV, a lot of things come to mind. Maybe it's the acting that moved you. Maybe it was the writing, or the direction of the episode. Maybe they touched on subject matter that was surprising and they handled it beautifully. Or maybe it was a nice combination of all of these, and more. Well, that's what this episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine provided. Not only was it a uniquely told story, with Terry in the spotlight as opposed to Jake, who was in the b-plot along with Amy (and there wasn't even a c-plot), but it also was not afraid to go into a more serious direction. This was one of the most amazing episodes of television I have seen in a long time. If this doesn't get nominated for the Episode Competition, an Emmy, or anything, I will truly be disappointed. It's a shame that this story even needed to be told in the first place, but since it was so topical I am glad they decided to do it. And what a result we got from it. Hats off to Phil Jackson, the writer of the episode, for this spectacular outing. I can't wait to talk about this masterpiece.

It was Terry's week to shine, and man did he do so. He was the star of the show, driving the a-plot to success and reaching heights I'm not sure the show has ever seen before. It gave us the opportunity to learn more about the sergeant, you know, spend some quality time with him and see how he's feeling. In the hilarious cold open, Boyle and Terry just so happen to be wearing the same outfits. Boyle decides it's time for another round of Who Wore It Better? This has happened once before, and it was Boyle who wore it better. This time? Unanimously, it's Terry. Now back to Terry, it turns out he wants more responsibility, and he's meeting with Holt to make that happen. He is so nervous that he ignores Jake while Jake is saying whatever he wants. To get the job he wants he has to do a love of work. Naturally, someone needs to pick up the kids from school, and Jake and Amy are right there to volunteer. This is a good time to mention that Boyle is getting on my nerves. I know he's playing the role of most of the audience, being the biggest shipper on deck, but it's getting a bit too much for me. But that's not gonna drag this episode down at all, no sir. This is just a slight on his character. So Jake and Amy pick up Cagney and Lacey and let them play with the windows a bunch of times and say whatever they want them to say. They go to the bar to celebrate when Terry calls them in a panic. Cagney's blankey "Moo Moo" is gone from the car. But no worries, it's close by his house. Jake hanging up the phone by saying I love you, and then Terry doing that same was so adorable. But those warm, fuzzy feelings are swept away quite quickly. Officer Maldack (played by Quinn from Dexter and Casey from Limitless, neither of which I ever liked) is on the streets giving Terry a stop-and-frisk. And thus, kickstarting the episode. The next day, Terry tells everyone what happened, and there's a lot to unpack. Hitchcock is more woke than Scully, Jake plays a mysterious prank on Boyle but the cop on the street was unnerved, and everyone was so worried about Terry. They all immediately knew it was wrong, and this is important to note later on. So Terry has to decide what to do with the guy. He starts by taking him out to dinner, which means Jake and Amy will have to babysit Cagney and Lacey. Leading us to...

It was cute to see Jake and Amy in this role, of course. I didn't know what I was in for when I saw those promo photos, but I was thoroughly impressed with what this b-plot provided. Cagney and Lacey have some tough questions - they want to know if their daddy was stopped because he's black, if being black is inherently bad, will the same thing happen to them, etc. Jake and Amy were not prepared at first to tell them, so they call everyone they know for backup. Turns out, Scully saved them with the cake and movie idea. Genius. But back to the dinner, it appears to going well until Maldack says that it was Terry's fault that happened. If he only remembered to bring his badge he never would've stopped him, and he's not going to apologize for "doing his job". Obviously this isn't okay, and Terry is heartbroken by this realization. He decides he's going to file the complaint on him after all, with Holt's approval of course. He goes to Holt, but to everyone's surprise, Holt refuses to file it for him. Terry is in a daze. The one person he thought he could rely on for help, especially in this situation, is shutting him out. Jake has the idea for Terry to go over to Holt's house and ask him directly why he won't file the complaint. This means...more Jake and Amy babysitting! (And another Boyle outburst. Yay.) But this round of babysitting went much better. Amy almost told them about the sexism in the world, Jake almost told them about the idea that they could change their gender identity. But no, it wasn't time for that. They told them straight up about the racist cop. What he did = bad. But Terry = did nothing wrong. Simple as that. I thought this was so important because young, impressionable kids, especially kids of colour, will no doubt have these very same questions as they are growing up in this world. Jake and Amy (and Phil Jackson, for that matter) did a great job trying to figure out exactly how to handle them. They left off by wanting to know what an orgasm is. HA! Classic. Now let's talk about the real juicy stuff of the episode with Captain Holt's house.

Holt is the only person at the precinct who can truly understand what Terry went through. Lord knows just how much discrimination he had to face in his days. This is why this whole situation is so fascinating. It's two black men trying to sort out exactly how to handle blatant and disgusting racism in the workplace. Terry gets in Holt's face at his house, but oh wait, what's this? Kevin is having a dinner party with his colleagues from work. Do we get to see Kevin? No. But that's not important for this episode, so I was able to look the other way. So when these two men really get into the thick of it, it's the most compelling TV I have seen in so long. Honestly - this "comedy" is pulling off gripping, emotional scenes better than a lot of acclaimed dramas right now. And I love it so much. I was tempted to just copy & paste the script from the scene on the couch, since it's going to be my Scene of the Week anyway, but I will just merely gloss over its excellence and keep going with the episode. I'll write my more specific piece later in week. So long story short Holt doesn't want Terry's career goals to get derailed by handing in the complaint, but Terry doesn't care. He would risk having that happen if it means cops like Maldack learn from their mistakes. Holt wants Terry's journey to be a little more like his - slowly rising through the ranks to make a greater scale difference. None of that matters to Terry if people like Maldack can get away with what they're doing right now. Their precinct might be a shining example of really great human beings, but just one precinct over there's a cop who has no idea that what he's doing is wrong. This leads Terry to recall why Terry became a cop in the first place. It's stunning. And so, we come to the end of the episode. Holt and Terry have a meeting on the roof (yet another fantastic scene), and Holt has decided to file the report for him after all. Holt ultimately relented because, sure, he rose through the ranks alright, and he's in a good place where he feels that he made a difference (which he ABSOLUTELY has). But given the opportunity to stop someone like Maldack from ever doing that to anyone ever again? He thought the latter would be more important at this time. Later it's revealed that Terry didn't get the position he wanted. Was it because of the complaint? We will never know. But it's a shame that Terry can't file the complaint justly AND get the job he desired. He did nothing wrong and that complaint shouldn't be held against him. One thing's for sure, Cagney and Lacey need yet another night of babysitting. Who did he call this time? Rosa and Gina. AMAZING.

And so, the episode ends. Holt and Terry have a drink together at work, a somber drink, and Jake and Amy explore how they would be as parents. All seems calm, for now. At least everyone can sleep at night knowing that Maldack must take pause and think about why what he did was wrong, and maybe he'll learn from this. The show seems to think he will, but I have my (very pessimistic) doubts. It's people like Maldack who aren't the people who are likely to change. Especially if they do what he did in the first place. Well, I'm gonna go cry again at the sheer beauty of this episode. Thank you so much for taking the time to cover this topic, Brooklyn Nine-Nine. I might be sharing most of the same traits as Jake (who was a bit disheartened from the drawing he received in which his nose was very large, oh, I can relate to that) but I can sympathize with anyone who had such a wrong like this done to them. I hope everyone can watch this episode at some point in their lives. The world would be a better place if they did.

What did YOU think of "Moo Moo"? How do you think the show did handling this serious subject? Who did you agree most with when Terry first told the squad? Did you enjoy seeing Jake and Amy in the parental role? And would you like to see more dinner parties at Holt's house with Kevin? (And I mean with Kevin this time.) Please leave a comment & vote in the poll down below!

And a big DISCLAIMER: I will be going on a trip for the next month and I will not be back to review any more episodes from the season. Bradley has done me the solid of picking up the slack for me, so you will all be in good hands. So since this is my last review of the season - thank you all for taking the time to read them. It means a lot to me.

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