Television: Brooklyn Nine-Nine, "Pilot"

I almost didn't watch this. But I was bored and the stuff I'm waiting to premiere isn't airing until next week. Plus, my viewing schedule has become very drama heavy, so I was thinking maybe I should try to find something funny . . .

The first, oh, minute of Brooklyn Nine-Nine did not impress me. But when Samberg picked up the stuffed bear and started making it talk . . . I'll admit it. I laughed. And that made me stick out the remainder of the episode.

The show itself is a half-hour, single-camera sitcom centered on Samberg's police detective character Jake Peralta and his partner Amy Santiago. Added to this mix is Andre Braugher as newly minted Captain Ray Holt, and Terry Crews as Sergeant Terry Jeffords. And then sprinkled around these are a larger ensemble cast that viewers will surely get to know better as episodes unspool. (Check FOX's official site for deets.)

Samberg, though central and the chief marketing ploy in attempts to advertise the program, is not the best thing about the show. I enjoyed Braugher and Jeffords more, and also feel Stephanie Beatriz as Rosa Diaz has real potential.

The pilot did a fine if rote job of setting up characters, their personalities and tensions, plastering these over a relatively toothless murder investigation. But I laughed more than once, and since that's the ultimate goal of a sitcom, I count it as a win. By which I mean I'll probably watch more. I don't necessarily feel compelled to watch weekly—this isn't appointment television—but it's the kind of thing I'd easily use to plug holes in my viewing, or something I'd queue up if I were bored and didn't feel like watching anything weighty. I'm at least glad I gave it a try.

No comments: