By Andy Chandler
American Comedy does a lot wrong, I’ve spoken before about how it took me a long time to ‘get’ american humour.
After infinite dodgy sitcoms that seemed to fall off a conveyor belt in the late 90’s early 00’s (Dharma & Greg, Everybody Loves Raymond, Will & Greg etc.), I felt done with american sitcoms.
Early Scrubs showed some promise and cartoon series like Family Guy sort of drifted onto my TV by accident and slowly I found myself more open to rediscovering american comedy. Just not South Park. NEVER South Park.
Parks & Rec was another show that did a lot to help steer me back towards not only watching american comedy but also enjoying it and actively seeking out more like that.
While all this was going on I also became aware of a very singular looking american comedian called Andy Samberg. He shot to fame as part of comedy band ‘The Lonely Island’ on america’s big comedy show Saturday Night Live. Now, Lonely Island somehow managed to perfect the comedy song. Full songs that stayed funny throughout, not that got old after 30 seconds but now you have to sit through 5 minutes of Bill Bailey not being funny while pretending to be in Kraftwerk.
After Mr. Samberg showed up and stole the entire first series of BBC3’s Cuckoo, I was a definite fan and was ready for more from someone who I considered to be the next big thing in american comedy.
It was then I discovered Brooklyn Nine-Nine, set in the fictional 99th Precinct of the NYPD in Brooklyn, the show follows a team of detectives headed by newly appointed Captain Raymond Holt (Andre Braugher). Among the detectives is Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg), who frequently tops the squad in arrests despite his relaxed, carefree attitude, much to the annoyance of his more by-the-book colleague, Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero).
Charles Boyle (Joe Lo Truglio) is a reliable but quirky detective whose emotions can sometimes go wild, as opposed to the stoic and mysterious Rosa Diaz (Stephanie Beatriz).
The final two detectives, Michael Hitchcock (Dirk Blocker) and Norm Scully (Joel McKinnon Miller), are older and often incompetent, although not without their usefulness. The detectives report to Sergeant Terry Jeffords (Terry Crews), a devoted family man who is initially afraid to go back to active police work for fear he may die in the line of duty and leave his children fatherless. Rounding out the precinct is sarcastic civilian administrator Gina Linetti (Chelsea Peretti), who seems to value dancing and her social life over work, and does anything to avoid her job.
Now going into it’s 6th series (which it was lucky to get as it was actually dropped by Fox and picked back up by NBC) you can find the first 4 series on Netflix and, if you fancy something a tad wacky, a tad zany and a bit out there, Brooklyn Nine-Nine is definitely for you.
It mixes action with comedy in a very modern and funny way, the plots keep you coming back for more, especially when the whole team are helping to track down a drugs ring or are called upon to help in a training excercise. The characters themselves are the main draw here, all quirky and funny without being obnoxious. They take the cop show stereotypes and mess with them and I love that.
So with 4 series of 26 episodes, you’ve got your next binge watch hit right here and it’s one I definitely think you’ll enjoy if you like a good laugh.