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How Fans Really Felt About The Brooklyn Nine-Nine Finale

"Brooklyn Nine-Nine" won over TV viewers for eight seasons with its delightfully quirky cast of characters The series embedded itself in popular culture with material that spawned countless memes, but also showcased an excellent, diverse cast that captured the hearts of many fans. So, suffice it to say, the show ending this year was a particularly bittersweet moment.

The show's last season is also its shortest, with only nine episodes (10, if you count the two-part finale as two installments), and feels remarkably different from those that came before it. Indeed, "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" Season 8 was fundamentally changed by the Black Lives Matter movement and the police brutality protests that defined the summer of 2020. The show's writers brought that into the season — leading to some big changes for several of its characters. Rosa (Stephanie Beatriz), for instance, quits the force, while Captain Holt (Andre Braugher) and Amy (Melissa Fumero) move on from the 99th precinct to head up the Department of Police Reform.

However, while those themes help separate most of the season from its predecessors, "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" also goes out with a nostalgic bang in its two-part finale, "The Last Day." The whole finale calls back to a fan-favorite activity: the Halloween Heist. While it's not Halloween when the episode takes place, Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg) is quitting the force to take care of his and Amy's baby, so he arranges for one last zany competition. Hijinks predictably ensue, making for a convoluted and over-the-top series finale that ends in a heartfelt goodbye. 

With all that in mind, here's what fans thought of the "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" finale.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine fans loved the finale's callbacks

For the most part, fans adored the "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" finale. In Reddit discussion threads about the episodes, users expressed their appreciation for the jokes inherent in Jake's plan and were ecstatic to finally see Holt's tattoo. Indeed, Holt's tramp stamp of Kevin's face on Cheddar's body more than lived up to fans' expectations, with Redditor u/indianajoes calling the reveal a "glorious" moment. 

Meanwhile, another fan-favorite moment from the finale was the cameo appearance by Andy Samberg's wife, Joanna Newsom, who plays a musician named Caroline Saint-Jacques Renard and trades insults with Jake. u/LeanMeanKorean wrote, "This finale is absolute fan service and I love it," and plenty of other fans agreed with them. 

Additionally, the show built up many running gags over the course of its eight seasons, and its finale went wild with them all. u/AnnaK22 commented, "It was a throwback to all the previous references but it was done so flawlessly." While series finales are often hit or miss, u/IrrayaQ even went so far as to write, "It was so perfect, I feel like all series finales should be done this way."

u/MahomestoHel-aire also praised the episode heavily, saying, "I don't think I've ever seen an episode of TV that got better and better as it went along and never ever faltered, that is until this one ... The conversation between Jake and Holt was fantastic. Andre Braugher is absolutely sensational. Best overall performance of the entire season in my opinion."

Jake's big decision remains controversial

While most fans adored the "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" series finale, a few thought it felt forced. u/shroomyspear commented that "every twist and callback was super predictable." Beyond that, some fans particularly didn't like the decision to have Jake quit the NYPD, while others felt it could have worked, but was simply rushed.

u/thrashmetaldinosaur posted a thread about this very topic, writing, "It felt like a bit of a forced sentimentality to bring some big full circle action to his character arc for the finale, but it just doesn't seem to fit [with] what the show's general perspective[s] are on work life balance and Jake's character as a whole." They added that the show often dealt with the balance between its characters' work and family lives, with several even managing to successfully juggle the two. The Redditor also pointed out that a few "episodes earlier Jake was going stir crazy being suspended for months," and speculated that he might quickly grow sick of being a stay-at-home dad.

Other fans felt that Jake leaving the force wasn't a bad idea, but admitted that they would have liked for the show to build up to it more than it did. u/Wade_Wilson_Watts wrote, "Like most of the season it felt rushed to me. I think it made sense, but I wish it could have been developed a bit more." u/GroundbreakingWind86 similarly agreed, but argued that there was still plenty of build-up to it earlier in the season, including, "Rosa leaving because she 'couldn't be a part of the problem'" and Jake "discovering on his own that some of the 'Good ones' still weren't good."

Ultimately, Jake's fate is the most controversial part of the finale amongst fans and will probably be debated for years to come. That said, at least "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" fans can take comfort knowing the crew still gets together each year for a Halloween heist, though, what Jake does after his son goes to school remains a mystery.