Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

How Melissa Fumero Thinks She Affected Amy's Character Growth On Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero) certainly changed quite a bit throughout her time on "Brooklyn Nine-Nine." When we first meet Amy, her defining characteristics are her extreme stubbornness, her strict adherence to the rules of the department, and her obsession with authority. Indeed, there are times early on when she almost seems like an antagonist to her future husband, the lovably goofy Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg).

That said, Amy quickly becomes one of the most endearing characters in the series through her frequent bouts of anxiety and ridiculous obsession with Captain Raymond Holt (Andre Braugher), the latter of which frequently causes her to become extremely awkward and flustered whenever she is around him. As the show continues, Amy's absurdly neurotic personality becomes perhaps one of the funniest aspects of the entire series — as she constantly exasperates her fellow officers with her uptight behavior and inability to break any rule whatsoever.

It must be exhausting to work with somebody as meticulous and strict as Amy Santiago. The fact that actor Melissa Fumero managed to make her such an endearing and lovable character is an immense achievement. In fact, Fumero herself seems to recognize this unique shift in Amy's character and seems to believe that she might be responsible for the character's original change and growth.

Fumero believes that her own anxiety helped influence Amy's personality

During an interview with Buzzfeed in 2021, Melissa Fumero explained that she thought the character of Amy Santiago changed dramatically from her initial audition for the series and attributed that to her own nervous disposition leaking into the character.

"She was very different in the audition. She was really confident, like a tough girl, you know?" Fumero said. "I remember my test with Andy [Samberg] — even the dynamic was different. She was always trying to top him, and there was a real competitiveness with them," she asserted. "I was so nervous shooting the pilot and was so dorky and awkward; I've convinced myself that the writers were watching me and were like, 'We should write that in.'"

Fumero went on to say that it seemed like Amy Santiago got increasingly anxious and awkward with each new episode, and knowing that (at least in her mind) this change in her character resulted from her own real-life anxiety behavior is certainly quite interesting. Indeed, perhaps the most intriguing part of Fumero's story is her reference to what Amy was like before the pilot was shot — a tough, somewhat aggressive character whom Fumero says was very similar to the series' Rosa Diaz (Stephanie Beatriz).

Whether or not this shift in Amy's character came from Fumero's own nervousness or from the writer's desire to make her more comedic, the result was that she became one of the funniest and most relatable characters in the whole series.