‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ Recap – ‘Sal’s Pizza’ Pulls an Edna’s Edibles

by Jessica Kane

The November 19 episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine saw Peralta and Boyle trying to track down the arsonist who burned down the titular Sal’s Pizza, home to the “eighth best pizza” in Brooklyn (Boyle’s words, not mine). The task is made harder when fire marshal Boone (played by Patton Oswalt) refuses to grant the NYPD access to the crime scene, insisting that the crime was perpetrated by none other than Sal himself.

Peralta refuses to accept this, and with the help of Boyle and his list of the best pizza places in Brooklyn (which he hilariously sends out to the Nine-Nine on a regular basis), he sets out to find the culprit. After several setbacks, the main one occurring after a punch from Boone to Peralta’s stomach escalates into a full-on brawl between a group of cops and firemen, the detective and fire marshal are able to put aside their differences to try and solve the case.

Oswalt is so great at antagonizing Samberg throughout the episode that I think the writers could have gotten away with the two working together in the midst of all their bitterness. When Boone finds out both he and Peralta have daddy abandonment issues, his sudden emotional transition from surly fire marshal to sobbing middle-aged man feels a bit off. Thankfully this was rectified after the case was solved and it came time to decide who was going to place rival pizza place owner/arsonist Gino under arrest. Boone wins the honor by somehow managing to act more childish than Peralta, ending their brief truce and reigniting the feud between NYPD and FDNY.

The B and C stories saw Santiago dealing with jealousy over Diaz’s offer to be captain of a New Jersey precinct and Terry and Gina trying to hire a new tech guy after Nine-Nine’s computers are hacked into. I thought Santiago’s character was a bit flat in this episode (almost a full 22 minutes of pettiness from her comes off more annoying than funny), but Diaz as usual didn’t fail to amuse.

Gina was totally on her game tonight, taking Terry by surprise as she picked the perfect computer nerd for the job: their original hacker. (Seriously, Gina is like an evil genius…no one else can make flossing right in someone’s face during an interview seem like a sane decision.) I wouldn’t hate it if we had a full episode full of just Gina and Terry, because there’s something about their chemistry that makes me laugh whenever they’re together on screen.

Amazing image of the night: Terry gleaning an answer from a Magic 8 Ball by crushing it. I didn’t know that was an option, and now shaking one just seems boring.

Follow Jessica Kane on Twitter (@jesskane31).

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