Debuting in 2013, Brooklyn Nine-Nine delivered plenty of laughs to its audience over eight seasons. Its ensemble cast features Andy Samberg, Andrew Braugher, Stephanie Beatriz, Terry Crews, Chelsea Peretti, Joe Lo Truglio, and Melissa Fumero.
Truthfully, some of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine are their Halloween Heist episodes. But we can’t be biased and fill the list with that. Alternatively, here are other episodes that are equally as fun, charming, or riveting and continue to live on in our memory. Since Brooklyn Nine-Nine has ended, you can freely binge this anytime.
1. DFW (Season 5, Episode 17)
The episode with the best cold open goes to DFW, without a doubt. It starts with Jake making a line-up of potential criminals sing ‘I Want It That Way’ by the Backstreet Boys to identify a murderer. The show then introduces Jake’s half-sister, Kate. She’s an annoying and chaotic character who abruptly decides she wants to move to New York.
Amy and Jake try to convince her to return to Dallas rather than move to New York, leading to them calling her ex, where chaos ensues. For the B-side plot, Terry gets injured while attempting yoga with Charles and gets stuck in the nap room while Gina tries to set Rosa up on a date.
Overall, it is a fun and chaotic episode. However, fans are concerned about Nasim Pedrad as Jake’s half-sister since she also acts in New Girl, which shares the same universe as Brooklyn Nine-Nine. In a way, a plot hole is formed.
2. Yippie Kayak (Season 3, Episode 10)
Fans of the show would know by now that Jake is an obsessive fan of the movie Die Hard. It has shaped his entire being and life, causing numerous episodes where Die Hard is a running gag. In Yippie Kayak, he gets to live out his very own Die Hard experience of being stuck in a department store hostage situation on Christmas.
Of course, things don’t go as he imagines. He spends his time on the sidelines while Boyle comes to the rescue through the air vents. Boyle even butchers John McClane’s iconic line, which hurts Jake’s soul a little. Additionally, the reason they got caught up in this hostage situation is that Jake forgot to get Boyle a Christmas present.
At the same time, Holt, Rosa, and Amy are at a Polar Club swim while Terry is forced to break protocol to save the hostage operation from the incompetent Vulture’s guidance. In Jake’s eyes, this would be one of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine, purely for the Die Hard references.
3. The Jimmy Jab Games (Season 2, Episode 3)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine is filled with all sorts of fun events and games that are guaranteed to make you laugh. The Jimmy Jab Games is simply one of them that the team decided to play while Holt and Terry were away. Jake bets with Rosa to get her friend’s phone number, but she is reluctant to give it to him because she doesn’t think he is over Amy yet.
The Jimmy Jab Games is filled with races and contests that put every single member of the squad’s skills to the test. We’ve got an expired food-eating competition, a foot race in bomb suits, and the team going undercover. As the games continue, it is down to Jake and Amy, with Amy winning in the end.
Jake then reveals to Rosa that he let Amy win, and Rosa hands him her friend’s number, hoping it will help him move on. Aside from all the hilarious moments, the bond between the characters makes this a wholesome episode to watch.
4. MooMoo (Season 4, Episode 16)
The show doesn’t shy away from touching on controversial topics in its unique way, which is evident in this episode. MooMoo talks about racial profiling, with Terry getting stopped in his own neighborhood by a cop for being a black man. As he is accosted and nearly arrested, the only thing preventing that likelihood is him being a cop himself.
Terry files a complaint and talks to Holt, who advises that there may be better ideas than this one. The two talk it out and file the complaint despite the consequences. Terry’s application for a specific liaison job was rejected the next day, probably due to the complaint. Still, he is proud of doing the right thing, which is something we should all learn from.
At the same time, Amy and Jake are stuck with babysitting Terry’s kids, Cagney and Lacey, where they talk about being a minority in America. The episode was praised for addressing the complicated subject matter while diminishing stereotypes.
5. Johnny and Dora (Season 2, Episode 23)
Onto less serious matters, this is the episode where Jake and Amy go undercover as a married couple – Johnny and Dora, to catch an identity thief. There’s also the little plotline of Boyle surprising Rosa with a quiet birthday date with her then-boyfriend, Marcus.
At the same time, Holt enlists Gina and Terry to retrieve a letter from Wuntch that proves she had conned him. Still, after being blackmailed by Wuntch again, he leaves the precinct to avoid splitting the squad. It gets more emotional as Gina announces that she will join Holt at the NYPD PR office.
By the end, Jake and Amy kiss in the filing cabinet after confessing their feelings, and they get interrupted by the announcement that the new captain precinct has arrived. This season finale takes a page from the sitcom handbook, leaving everyone on a cliffhanger on the team’s fate.
6. The Pontiac Bandit (Season 1, Episode 12)
This episode where Craig Robinson as Doug Judy gets introduced is a special one as he continues to get an annual appearance each season. As the squad grows, so does Doug Judy and his odd friendship with Jake. Just for that alone, it deserves a spot on this list of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
This should be enough for you to enjoy this episode, but we also get Boyle’s return from the hospital after getting shot. He moves around on a unique scooter to avoid distressing his wound, which is a pretty funny sight to see. Still, he is also highly insufferable to everyone else.
Anyway, Doug Judy is caught based on identity theft charges. Still, since he has information on the infamous ‘Pontiac Bandit,’ Jake decides to team up with him to pursue that instead. After a bait-and-switch situation, it turns out that Doug Judy is the ‘Pontiac Bandit,’ and Jake has been fooled into letting him run free. This starts the whole bait-and-switch friendship between the two over the years.
7. The Last Ride (Season 4, Episode 15)
News that the precinct is about to shut down gets everyone in a frenzy. Everyone rushes to close their cases, get as much interaction with each other as possible, and set the best record. Boyle and Jake are solving one last case of a stolen bicycle, which spirals into a big drug case. They get to live their wildest dreams of going all out on a case.
Amy and Holt speed through five years of their planned mentorship while Gina plays pranks on everyone in the precinct while streaming live on social media. Terry fails to beat Hitchcock’s record of most solved cases, but Rosa sets the record straight that he did beat Hitchcock since he helps everyone with their cases, too.
Holt then gets informed that their precinct won’t be shut down after Gina’s livestream audience calls the Commissioner to complain. Seems like it genuinely does pay to have fans on social media. This episode shows how much the show will be missed if it ends (even if it did end).
8. 99 (Season 5 Episode 9)
To commemorate the 99th episode of the show, we are taken on a wild road trip from Los Angeles to New York, where the team encounters all sorts of weird situations. The squad is in Los Angeles for a funeral when Holt is informed that he has an interview to replace the New York City Police Commissioner.
But everything is preventing them from returning to New York, with flights getting canceled and their RV exploding. They even end up on a cattle farm owned by Boyle’s cousin to rest for the night. Things aren’t easy in the morning either, as they get stopped by a police officer who suspects the vehicle they’re using is involved in trafficking drugs.
Eventually, we all find out that this was all a ploy by Holt, who is reluctant to go for his interview for fear of foul play. The team promises to help him, and all is well when Holt is shortlisted for the position. Overall, this episode is hilarious and iconic as the team dresses in Boyle’s boring beige clothes while watching cows have ‘fun’ throughout the night.
9. The Bet (Season 1, Episode 13)
A season-long bet culminates with this episode, starting the Jake and Amy love story. The bet is on who is the better detective between Jake and Amy. If Jake wins, he gets to take Amy on the worst date ever, but if Amy wins, she gets Jake’s Mustang. The detective with the most criminals arrested wins.
Alas, Amy loses at the last minute. She is forced to go on a terrible date with Jake, where he has to decide everything for her until midnight and a meticulously planned torture date. As luck would have it, Holt interrupts their date, forcing them to go on a last-minute stakeout instead.
The two bond throughout the night, so Jake sticks it out with Amy even when Holt offers replacements. They did catch the perp while posing as a couple, though. On the other hand, Boyle is affected by truth medication while Holt outs Terry to his wife for saving his life in the field.
10. Pimemento (Season 7, Episode 3)
A take on Christopher Nolan’s Memento, we have Adrian Pimento and his battle with short-term memory loss. Pimento is undoubtedly one of the funniest side characters in Brooklyn Nine-Nine, which is evident in this episode. He goes to Jake and Boyle for help as he claims that someone is trying to kill him.
At the same time, Jake is trying to keep away from Boyle to avoid telling him the secret that he and Amy are trying to get pregnant. After many challenges to piece together Pimento’s memory and motives, they eventually catch the culprit red-handed—Pimento’s full memory returns while Jake and Boyle mend their friendship again.
Over at the precinct, everyone is forced to attend the boring annual Human Resources seminar on workplace conflict. They get over it in four hours but are forced to fill two more hours based on requirements, so they talk about their insecurities one after another. It turns ugly with everyone listing each other’s flaws, but eventually, they bond over it anyway.
11. Suicide Squad (Season 6, Episode 18)
The Brooklyn Nine-Nine Suicide Squad refers to the old enemies of the precinct and the worst of the worst. We have Chief Wuntch, Captain Jason Stentley, aka C.J., and the Vulture. Their help is necessary to defeat the evil Commissioner John Kelly.
But with a band of the worst people, everything is bound to go awry. Sure enough, it ends with Wuntch and the Vulture betraying Holt and the team while C.J., being the bird-brain he is, messes up the plan. The Commissioner gets fired, and Wuntch takes his place while Holt is demoted to a traffic officer.
Terry, who was supposed to leave for another precinct, is now ordered to stay where he is, so the farewell party is all for nothing. Honestly, though, this episode will grind your gears and have you intensely waiting for updates as the plot plays out. Given the emotional rush and adrenaline, it is undoubtedly one of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
12. Chasing Amy (Season 4, Episode 18)
Amy, our favorite overachiever, goes missing hours before her important Sergeant qualification exam. It starts with Jake sitting with an anxious Amy in a briefing room with a practice exam test to calm her down. But he returns to an empty room.
Jake enlists Rosa’s help in tracking Amy down, frequenting all her favorite spots and, at the same time, reminiscing about their time together. It’s all adorable and wholesome as Jake finds her on the rooftop of their first date. She tells him she fears their relationship will get strained if she passes the exam. He convinces her that it is ridiculous, and she sits for the exam.
While this all goes down, Gina gets expelled from the Boyle family for accidentally destroying an heirloom. The issue is Boyle is ousted now, too, so she tries to get another heirloom to get him back in. Amy’s stressed-out hair is the cherry on top of everything that goes down in this episode.
13. HalloVeen (Season 5, Episode 4)
Okay, we must include at least one Halloween episode, and this is one of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine. HalloVeen is the fifth annual Halloween heist held by the precinct. This year, they compete for a champion belt and the prestige of being called ‘Amazing Genius.’
Chaos ensues as everyone tries to steal the belt from one another through elaborate scheming, team-ups, and disguises. This is also the episode where Holt infamously curses a dog for not being the actual Cheddar, his corgi that is vital for his plan. After further distractions, Jake and Amy end up in the evidence locker.
She finds the hidden belt with the title replaced as ‘Amy, will you marry me?’ with Jake on his knees. Yes! That’s the twist! She says yes, and they celebrate at the bar with Amy, who is considered the winner of the year’s heist, even if no one agrees. Get a man who would scheme as hard as Jake, and you’re a winner.
14. Cop-Con (Season 4, Episode 17)
It is rare for a show to have back-to-back hit episodes, but Season 4 is a season that keeps on giving. From The Last Ride and MooMoo to Chasing Amy and now Cop-Con, Season 4 may be one of the best seasons in Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s eight-season run.
This time, the squad heads to Rochester, New York, for a cop convention as Holt wants to run for a higher position in the NYPD. At the convention, the squad throws a party while continuously distracting Holt to prevent him from finding out. In the morning, everyone is hungover, and they find the laptop Holt entrusted to Terry for his presentation is now missing.
Another round of distracting Holt ensues while they investigate the laptop’s disappearance. Ultimately, Holt finds out about the party and is upset he wasn’t invited. On a side plot, Amy and Rosa help Sculy gain the affection of a woman he is attracted to at the convention. It’s gross, but it is funny nonetheless.
15. Jake and Amy (Season 5, Episode 22)
We’re finally at one of the most anticipated episodes of the show – Jake and Amy’s wedding! This is the season finale for Season 5 and one of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Amy and Jake have it rough as someone calls in a bomb threat at their wedding venue, and Amy’s veil gets ruined. Terry saves the day by fixing it for her.
Even after arresting the culprit, the bomb still cannot be moved. Luckily, Boyle decides to make up for his mistake, and they end up having the wedding ceremony in the 99 police precinct instead, with Holt officiating the wedding. Amy’s ex-boyfriend Teddy ends up helping with the wedding instead, as he cannot help diffuse the bomb in time for the wedding.
Despite all the chaos, the wedding feels suitable for Amy and Jake. They are surrounded by the people they love in a place that is their second home. The wedding is a beautiful and unconventional one. Holt receives an email about the Commissioner election results but is too afraid to open it, ending the season on a cliffhanger.
16. Game Night (Season 5, Episode 10)
This episode is inspired by Stephanie Beatriz coming out as bisexual in real life. They decided her character should receive the same experience, tackling the dread and fear of people coming out to their families in one magnificent swoop. At the same time, the Cyber Crimes division moves in next door, taking up all their internet bandwidth. Gina comes to the rescue, though.
It starts with Rosa coming out to her colleagues and later asking Jake for help to come out to her parents. During a disastrous dinner, her parents think she is Jake’s side-chick instead. On game night, Rosa entirely comes out to her parents, but they deem her sexual preferences a phase and dismiss her.
Eventually, Rosa’s father meets up with her to tell her he accepts her sexual preferences, but her mother might need more time. This is true for some parents, so including it in this episode feels raw and honest. The sweetest part is that the squad started their own game night instead, showing that they are a second family to Rosa. Also, Danny Trejo and Olga Merediz as Rosa’s parents? Iconic.
17. The Box (Season 5, Episode 14)
One of the best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine is its bottle episode, featuring Sterling K. Brown. Brown plays a dentist, Phillip Davidson, who is a prime suspect in the murder of his business partner. This episode is an homage to Homicide: Life on the Street, and it is an outstanding one.
The tension and stress with this episode are through the roof, especially since we all know that the dentist is guilty of the crime. However, without any physical evidence, he will easily walk free. Holt gets roped into the investigation to help Jake in getting a confession. But things get more complicated as Davidson has an alibi and excuses for all the accusations pointed at him.
The two use numerous investigation tactics to get him to talk, but he won’t budge. In the last couple of minutes, before he is set free, Davidson implicates himself in anger as Jake keeps saying he got lucky with the murder. Indeed, he could have gotten away with the crime if his ego hadn’t been easily bruised.
18. Honeymoon (Season 6, Episode 1)
After a wedding comes the honeymoon, but nothing is ever that easy for Jake and Amy as they meet with a depressed Holt staying at the same Mexican resort. Holt had decided to take some time off after losing the Commissioner position to John Kelly. Dealing with a depressed Holt with his inappropriate fruit themed shirts is simultaneously stressful and hilarious.
Holt joins the couple in all their activities, which eventually cheers him up as he thinks about leaving the NYPD. Jake, alarmed by this idea, locks him in their hotel room. In the end, the couple ties him to the bed as they try to talk it out. Eventually, he comes to his senses, escapes, apologizes, and refunds their honeymoon as he returns to work.
At the precinct, Boyle tries to investigate the breakup of his father and Gina’s mother, revealing some surprising things. Terry freaks out, trying to lead as Holt would, and Rosa needs help with a case. When Jake and Amy return, everything is in chaos. Holt has openly rebelled against the new Commissioner’s initiatives, landing the entire precinct in the bullpen.
19. Safe House (Season 5, Episode 12)
When the safety of your husband is threatened, you do all you can to keep them safe, even if it means locking them up in a house for months. Such is the fate of Kevin Cozner as a criminal threatens to kill him. For two months, Kevin and Jake get holed up in a safe house and have to play by Holt’s ridiculous rules for survival.
This includes no phone or internet and staying out of sight of windows during daylight, which means total boredom for the two of them. As this continues, Holt and Kevin’s relationship becomes strained. At the same time, the squad tries to find the criminal’s whereabouts. This includes the iconic scene of Rosa going undercover to a salon to talk to his girlfriend.
Things escalate when Jake and Kevin leave the safe house to go to a library but are caught by Holt, who gets kidnapped by the criminal’s henchman. At the criminal’s hideout, Jake ends up captured and nearly gets shot. Kevin saves them all by crashing a car into the place. Just for this iconic scene and his iconic punch, this deserves to be on our list of best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
20. Lights Out! (Season 7, Episode 13)
Another high-intensity episode as Brooklyn experiences a blackout right as Amy is about to leave for maternity leave. Holt and Terry are trapped in the elevator, so Amy has to take charge and initiate the blackout protocol. Jake and Boyle are patrolling the streets, trying to catch criminals, when Amy’s water breaks with Rosa by her side.
Jake and Boyle end up loading the criminals in a street trolley, but they find out about a gang conspiracy to induce a blackout to rob banks. So, they go around the city, capturing criminals while restoring power to the grid. Eventually, Amy starts to go into labor in the precinct’s break room.
Terry and Holt are free and are dancing to distract her, while Hitchcock and Scully let her use their bed in a secret room. Boyle calls for Detective Peanut Butter (the horse) to help Jake reach the precinct in time to see the birth of his child, and he makes it! It’s an adorable ending to a tense situation.
Those are the 20 best episodes from Brooklyn Nine-Nine! We would have included more episodes, so our honorable mentions include 9 Days, Cinco de Mayo, Greg and Larry, and Beach House. For more lists like this, you can check out our Friends version!
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I dip my toes in all things nerdy. I started writing and never looked back! I’ll write about anything under the sun if you give me the chance, but my loyalty currently lies with nerd culture.
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