It’s morning round-up time, with quick reviews of last night’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” and “New Girl” coming up just as soon as I’m knitting a mansion…
Last night’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” for the most part avoided making Jake seem like an overgrown 12-year-old – it helped that everyone in the squad hated the Vulture (a perfectly-cast Dean Winters, whom I hope returns) just as much – but still had the structure of Jake getting into trouble for something that would have been easily avoided had he listened to Captain Holt the first time. It’s gone past an interpersonal dynamic and become a cliche that does absolutely no favors to the show’s main character. That said, I really enjoyed Jake interacting with the squad at the bar and when they went to shrink-wrap the Vulture’s motorcycle, and the B-story about Holt trying to get Terry recertified and back in the game was both funny (I especially liked Gina’s reaction to the “Top Gun” plot synopsis) and a genuine character moment for Terry. It’ll be interesting to see how the show works with two different disapproving authority figures (both African-American, per cop show bylaws), and am happy to make Terry Crews more vital, but I hope it doesn’t come at Andre Braugher’s expense.
After last week’s bounce-back episode, meanwhile, “New Girl” was back to struggling with the characters and their likability with “The Box.” We know from past experience that Schmidt isn’t the narcissistic sociopath he describes himself to Rabbi Jon Lovitz as, but you sure wouldn’t know it from this episode, or this season. And though Nick’s complete ignorance and/or ineptitude about basic adult activities is a well-established, and usually very funny, part of his character, in the wrong context – which this episode was – he can just come across as a jerk. (When it only impacts Nick, it’s amusing; when it impacts the other regulars, it usually isn’t.) I also didn’t like the argument with Jess about her desire to change him, because while that’s certainly been a point of conflict between them in the past, it really hasn’t since they started dating this season. (The premiere was, in fact, all about Jess pulling a Nick Miller and running away from her problems.) The reconciliation at the bank put the two of them on a better footing going forward, but didn’t really redeem what had happened earlier in the episode.
What did everybody else think?