Brooklyn Nine-Nine at its core has always been about the friendships—you could spend pages just listing every incredible thing they’ve each done for each other, and the ways they’ve been there for one another. (And yes, someday I actually will.) But in “Show Me Going,” it’s not just about the lengths they’re willing to go forward each other, it’s about how they’re going to help themselves in the process too.
After learning that there’s an active shooter situation that Rosa is on call during, the squad panics at the thought of their losing their friend, and the helplessness the situation has ultimately put them in. And when Jake decides he can no longer standby doing nothing physically, Holt tells him to help his team emotionally, implying that it’s not something that comes easy to him otherwise he’d be the one to do so. But Jake initially refuses and states that he’s going in to physically help Rosa instead, only to show up with pizza later asking the team to share their emotions.
On any other show (except Ted Lasso), a moment like this might not have worked as well because it wouldn’t match the series’ tone. Except from day one Brooklyn Nine-Nine has made it clear that emotions matter and they matter tremendously.
Sometimes, the best thing a squad can do to calm each other down is to express just how terrified they are of losing each other. If more officers responded to the scene of the crime, there could have been even more dire consequences, and that’s why it makes sense that the commissioner’s office advised against it. But the 99th precinct aren’t just an average squad, they’re each other’s family, and at best, the scene proved that there’s really nothing they wouldn’t do for each other.
In “Show Me Going,” Amy and Gina broke down a toilet after trying ridiculously hard to fix it in the first place. Hitchcock and Scully beat each other up. And Jake listened and chose to be vulnerable. It ended up calming them all down because suppressing emotions, especially fear does more harm than good and the series emphasizing this contributes to its speciality.
No two people in the precinct are exactly alike and no two people handle situations the same way, but they’re all human beings who love each other deeply in spite of those differences, and they are a family because of them. And Holt’s presence has tirelessly not only reminded them of the fact that they are a team, but that vulnerability isn’t something to shy away from.
In each of them admitting just how terrified they are for Rosa’s state right now, and the uncertainties that followed, they helped each other ease into a place where the sadness was shared and thus easier to cope with. It’s established intricately in Ted Lasso’s “The Hope That Kills You” but it’s better to be sad than to be sad and alone. While they were each tense and on edge because of what Rosa was going through, she was ultimately alone through it, whereas their ability to share their fears and vulnerability made the waiting process bearable.
“Show Me Going” keeps the tension going until the very last second with Rosa walking in and then ultimately not wanting to talk about what’s happened. However, by telling the team she wants drinks with them is the very exhibition of why a team is so crucial and why sharing vulnerability is so healing. Rosa might not have wanted to talk, but the team being together and sharing drinks was enough for each of them to understand just how important it is that they have each other after moments like this.
And it’s the understanding that talking about our fears can be incredibly cathartic even if it doesn’t feel as though it is in that moment. Although Terry’s blood pressure normalizing does prove otherwise.