Brooklyn Nine-Nine is back tonight and maybe better than it's ever been.
After being canceled by Fox last May, the show suddenly found itself the most talked about thing on TV, with famous fans like Lin Manuel Miranda, Mark Hamill, and Guillermo Del Toro leading the public outcry. 24 hours later, NBC had picked the show up for a sixth season, and suddenly the Nine-Nine had a whole new life.
"We're for sure living on borrowed time," Andy Samberg said during a press day for the series. "I would say in some ways we imagine ourselves as having super powers now, because the worst thing that can happen is the thing that already happened. So we're taking a lot of big swings."
While Samberg and creator Dan Goor then joked about doing an episode entirely in Japanese anime (which isn't happening...yet), the truth is that they really are trying some new things this year.
"I think that one thing we really wanted to do this season was more of this sort of experimental--experimental might be too highfalutin, but the sort of out-of-form episodes that we started doing in season four and five," Goor said, referencing episodes like "The Box," which starred Sterling K. Brown as a difficult suspect, and "MooMoo," which dealt with racial profiling. "We wanted to do more of those and to sort of challenge ourselves formally, and I think we felt empowered to do that kind of thing because we are living on borrowed time."
This season, that includes a #MeToo episode centered around Amy (Melissa Fumero), and you might also refer to the season's second episode as being "out of form" as it goes back in time and explores the origin story of Detectives Hitchcock (Dirk Blocker) and Scully (Joel McKinnon Miller).
The premiere picks up right where the season five finale left off, with Captain Holt (Andre Braugher) revealing whether or not he's the new police commissioner, and then takes Jake and Amy on their honeymoon. It's all hilarious as usual, and there's not a single sign present that there was any reason the Nine-Nine should have recently been canceled.
"You know, when we were canceled, you think it's all over, and then when it's not, all of this is now gravy," said Joe Lo Truglio. "We're like coasting on this elated energy of 'we're still here,' and that's brought a really strong charge to the show."
One upsetting thing about season six (the only upsetting thing) is that it will see the official/unofficial exit of Chelsea Peretti as Gina Linetti. While she won't be gone for good, Peretti promises an exit fit for the human equivalent of the 100 emoji.
"There's nothing casual about it," she assured us.
"It's a pretty exciting exit," she said. "I think you'll have fun and you'll feel your feelings and it's kind of like, a good mix of everything you would want from a Gina Linetti exit, and from this family where there's clearly so much love there."
She promises a scene between Gina and Jake that may bring the tears, as well as a moment with Rosa, but it was the goodbye with Captain Holt that sent Peretti herself into tears.
"Me and Captain Holt have a very intense goodbye that literally made me cry as an actor for how hard it was," she said, but it's not all about the emotions. "I completely go nuts on a dance moment, and so there's definitely a lot to sink your teeth into."
"It's a very satisfying Gina exit, with heart and hilarity," added Fumero.
It's also a very satisfying show, with heart and hilarity, and that will likely never change no matter what network it's on.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine premieres tonight at 9 p.m. on NBC.
E! and NBC are both part of the NBC Universal family.