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Adrian Pimento's Serial Killer Traits In Brooklyn Nine-Nine Explained

This supporting character on Brooklyn Nine-Nine may make you laugh, but you might not realize just how frightening his dark side can be.

Introduced in the comedy's third season, Adrian Pimento — played by fan favorite funnyman Jason Mantsoukas — is introduced as an erratic yet highly skilled police officer who spent most of his time undercover for Brooklyn's 99th precinct. Pimento is known for his extreme paranoia, which seems to make sense, as he's spent years wondering if he can trust anybody, and after his experiences undercover, he's also prone to nervous breakdowns, presumably thanks to some latent PTSD after being forced to do horrific things while working within the mob. However, Pimento's blatant mental instability is played as a huge joke, thanks in no small part to Mantsoukas' bombastic and undeniably hilarious performance.

However, according to an expert, there's a sinister side of Pimento's behavior that might just horrify you. Looper spoke to Dr. John Paul Garrison, PsyD, C-PD — a clinical and forensic psychologist and certified personality disorder expert — who revealed that Pimento has several traits in common with a typical serial killer.

"Adrian Pimento exhibits a constellation of behaviors and symptoms that are often identified in serial killers," Dr. Garrison revealed. "Just to list a few, he is impulsive, has outbursts, struggles with empathy, has reduced pain sensitivity, has low social awareness, shows no remorse, and has difficulty regulating anger." Thanks to Dr. Garrison, here's every single one of Adrian Pimento's serial killer traits in Brooklyn Nine-Nine, explained.

Adrian Pimento's lack of real emotions is unsettling to experts

Whenever Pimento recounts his time working undercover, he seems extremely detached from the violent acts he witnessed and committed; according to Dr. Garrison, this could be described as "superficial emotions."

Throughout Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Adrian Pimento fluctuates between conversational, unemotional speeches about committing horrible acts to being intensely aggressive and violent," Dr. Garrison remarked. "Many serial killers can be superficially charming and engaging. However, most of these emotions are insincere. A near-universal truth is that they have to have a personality disorder for someone to become a serial killer.

"They have no capacity for introspection or understanding of their behaviors," the doctor continued. "They are incapable of making changes in their lives that would make their situation better. They see the world as "dog-eat-dog" and have no regard for right and wrong. Pimento repeatedly displays this behavior whenever he talks about what he has done as an undercover officer. He often refers to murder or torture that he committed when undercover, and he talks about these activities in a conversational manner. In almost every scene with Pimento, he demonstrates a superficiality with the ability to understand his emotions or accurately understand others' feelings." Ultimately, Dr. Garrison points to a particular clip from the series, where Pimento says he has a funny story about "keeping his eyes moist..." only to be shown brutally beating an unnamed man with a fire extinguisher, with Pimento's face soaked in blood.

Impulsivity is another disturbing trait Adrian Pimento shares with serial killers

"A defining trait of Adrian Pimento is his impulsivity, which is a core characteristic of serial killers," Dr. Garrison told Looper.

"Impulsivity essentially means acting without thinking," Dr. Garrison continued. "Examples of his impulsivity include getting fully nude while talking to Jake [Peralta, played by Andy Samberg] and Charles [Boyle, played by Joe Lo Truglio], being covered in ludicrous tattoos (i.e., BUY TOILET PAPER!!!), suddenly threatening violence during conversations, and incessantly putting himself in critically dangerous situations. While impulsivity can be caused by a variety of psychological disorders (e.g., ADHD, Bipolar Disorder), the reason that serial killers are impulsive is most likely due to an inability to inhibit behaviors in the areas of the brain such as the prefrontal cortex (i.e., reasoning) and the amygdala (i.e., mediates memory and fear). Serial killers are chronically under-stimulated and constantly seek stimulation to feel normal."

Dr. Garrison also singles out a clip that perfectly displays Pimento's weird impulsivity, where, while talking to Jake — who asks if anything is "off limits" after Pimento rattles off all the horrible things he'll allow others to do to him — says to "surprise" him, completely giving in to his impulses with no concern for his personal safety.

Adrian Pimento has a total lack of remorse

While his psychopathy is an amazingly effective vehicle for comedy, Pimento often discusses the horrible acts he has committed against others," Dr. Garrison reveals. "He usually shows little to no remorse or guilt for his actions. He refers to acts he has engaged in as though they are normal and understandable (i.e., punching a necklace through a guy's throat, torturing others for mob bosses)."

"He shows little to no regard for the safety of others either," the doctor went on. "He rationalizes his abhorrent behavior through the context of being a good guy, but is ultimately refusing to take responsibility for these behaviors. He can rationalize any behavior through the context of being in law enforcement or doing it to fit in undercover, but someone who is not a psychopath could not engage in these behaviors regardless of context. Additionally, this lack of responsibility is not limited to his job; he often immediately refuses responsibility for other situations like, "I accidentally killed a protected buffalo, self-defense." Perpetrators lack the ability to take responsibility and often place fault on their victims. They rationalize and disown responsibility because they frame it as though they had to engage in harmful behavior. They think their destructive behavior is not their fault. It is the fault of the situation or the victim." To illustrate his point, Dr. Garrison cites a scene where Pimento tells Jake and Boyle that he had to leave Alaska, where he was living, after "accidentally" killing a "protected buffalo" and fighting a bear to death, making it clear that he finds the accusation absolutely absurd... and doesn't feel remorse.

You can stream the first seven seasons of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, which will end after its upcoming eighth season, on Hulu now.