Andy Samberg says the Brooklyn Nine-Nine characters will ‘examine their roles in the world’… as the cop comedy adjusts in the wake of protests over police brutality
It was reported in June that Brooklyn Nine-Nine had thrown out the scripts for four upcoming episodes in the wake of protests sparked by the police killing of George Floyd.
And now star Andy Samberg is promising that the show’s characters will ‘examine their roles in the world’ as the cop comedy retools in the wake of the protests.
The 42-year-old actor also clarified that the long-running comedy would address both systemic racism and police brutality in its upcoming season during an interview with USA Today that was published on Friday.
Changes ahead: Andy Samberg, 42, promised the characters on his comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine would ‘examine their roles in the world’ in an interview with USA Today from Friday; seen in January
Samberg reiterated that the primary purpose of the series is and always has been to get laughs from its audience, though he added that ‘it’s a cop comedy, so we got to lie on the bed we make.’
‘The challenge is going to be being honest about what is going on in the world and not shying away from the fact that there are serious problems and also not punishing viewers who like our show and care about our characters,’ he said.
‘But I do believe that our characters need to examine their roles in the world. They’re going to be forced to look in the mirror and see who they’re complicit with.’
The former SNL star also claimed that Brooklyn Nine-Nine hadn’t shied away from depicting police misconduct in the past.
‘We’ve certainly never acted as if all police are innocent outside of our squad. In fact, I think we have a ton of episodes that are specifically about how there’s a lot of corruption and breaking protocol,’ he contended.
Tight balance: Samberg said the show would try to be honest about police corruption while ‘also not punishing viewers who like our show and care about our characters’; still from Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Not hiding anything: He claimed that Brooklyn Nine-Nine hadn’t shied away from depicting police misconduct in the past, though it’s often treated for laughs; publicity still for Brooklyn Nine-Nine
A fourth-season episode of the series featured a storyline in which Terry Crews’ character is racially profiled by a white police officer at night, but most instances of police misconduct on the show have been shown for laughs.
Although Samberg expects the show to be a more positive influence going forward, he was careful to state that a half-hour comedy couldn’t be expected to change the culture of policing or how Americans view the police.
‘I think it’s important for us and for anyone watching our show to keep in mind if we’re looking for a half-hour comedy show to be the ones to solve this problem, we’re in trouble,’ he said.
‘Our job is pointing out that stuff isn’t getting done right and spreading the word that we’re (really) hopeful that it can get better.’
Baby steps: The SNL star said a half-hour comedy couldn’t be expected to change the culture of policing or how Americans view the police; publicity still for Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Making progress: ‘Our job is pointing out that stuff isn’t getting done right and spreading the word that we’re (really) hopeful that it can get better’; still from Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Samberg stars o Brooklyn Nine-Nine as detective Jake Peralta, who’s part of the fictional 99th precinct.
Andre Braugher, who famously played a detective on the critically acclaimed series Homicide, also stars as his comically hard-nosed boss, Captain Raymond Holt.
Despite being a critical favorite, the series was canceled by Fox in May 2018 after five seasons, only for the series to be revived on NBC.
Elsewhere in the interview, the Palm Springs star spoke up in favor of new diversity standards that will be imposed on all films hoping to qualify for the Academy Awards.
‘The Oscars thing … People having issues with that is insane,’ Samberg said. ‘The parameters if you look at them closely, you can have the “whitest” cast in the history of cinema and still very easily meet them by just doing a few key roles behind the camera. People who have problems with it can f**k off.’
No fuss: Samberg also downplayed complaints about new Oscar diversity rules. ‘You can have the “whitest” cast in the history of cinema and still very easily meet them…’; seen in February