DISCLAIMER: This recap of the Brooklyn Nine-Nine series finale episode “The Last Day” is riddled with spoilers. You’ve been warned, and proceed at your peril.
Welcome back, Nine-Niners! “The Last Day” marks the last episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine … ever. To quote Jake Peralta, “I’m gonna go cry in the bathroom.” This outing is such a touching love letter to fans. So many Easter eggs! The memorable supporting role appearances! Gina Linetti Spaghetti Confetti! I certainly didn’t make it through the hour without sobbing.
“The Last Day” is equal parts heartfelt and humorous — quintessential Brooklyn Nine-Nine. It’s bittersweet, but it’s a beautiful send-off for a beautiful show. It feels apropos to close out the series with the most elaborate, twist-filled heist yet.
Ready to delve into “The Last Day”? Let’s get to it.
We open with Terry (Terry Crews) waking up to find Jake (Andy Samberg) in his bed. It’s Heist Day! To celebrate Amy and Holt’s final day at the Nine-Nine before they move on to become Chief of Department and Deputy Commissioner, respectively. Time to go out in style!
However, Holt (Andre Braugher) gains the upper hand on Jake by hiding in his shower.
Later, everyone gathers at the precinct to kick off the heist festivities. The winner must steal a fake Medal of Valor by midnight to become “Grand Champion of the Nine-Nine.” The medal is in a tube.
We learn Terry won’t be participating in the last heist ever. He’ll be interviewing for Holt’s old position at One Police Plaza. Captain Jeffords has a nice ring to it.
Hitchcock (Dirk Blocker) wants to participate, but he’s in Brazil.
Jake has been planning the heist for almost two weeks alongside Amy (Melissa Fumero). He procures a bag of old teeth from the evidence locker, and some of them boast squad members’ initials. Jake inserts magnets on them so he can orchestrate the pairings.
Holt will be with Scully (Joel McKinnon Miller) and Hitchcock, much to his dismay. Rosa and Amy are partners. Lastly, Jake will buddy up with Boyle.
Later, we see Jake and Amy scheming away. They’re planning “The Perfect Goodbye,” but it’s not for Amy and Holt. Jake discloses a bombshell to his wife — he’s leaving the NYPD.
Naturally, Amy is shocked. Being a detective is his dream job! However, Jake wants to stay home with Mac. He longs to be the perfect dad his father never was, and Amy wholeheartedly supports his decision. Peraltiago 4eva!
So, Jake wants the heist to end on the Brooklyn Bridge with everyone converging for a brilliant fireworks display. Amy wonders when they’ve ever hung out as a squad on the BB. Flash to the opening credits bit!
According to Jake, they were only getting falafel in that shot.
Next, Terry informs the crew that he’s designed the first part of the heist to be a nostalgic trip down memory lane. There will be five clues.
What follows is an array of Brooklyn Nine-Nine Easter eggs — there’s the beloved vending machine from a memorable cold open, and Rosa smashes it with a fire extinguisher, which is the Rosa Diaz way.
Then, they meet with Caleb (Tim Meadows), Jake’s cannibal friend from prison, and he reveals the next clue via intricate needlepoint. After that, the squad arrives at Madeleine Wuntch’s grave, wherein Holt ensures there’s a balloon arch erected at all times.
Jake’s famous “I Want It That Way” singing perp lineup is a clue. I’m in Easter egg heaven.
Meanwhile, Terry is interviewing to be captain of the Nine-Nine at One Police Plaza. The janitor erased their next clue, so Jake calls Terry’s butt.
This next hint leads our crew outside, where Holt and Kevin shared that passionate, rainy kiss. But first, Holt finally reveals his tattoo. It’s Cheddar with Kevin’s human head (and it’s glorious). When Holt thinks he’s risen victorious, Gina (Chelsea Peretti) makes her grand entrance while donning a “Surprise Reveal” shirt.
Then, she stores the tube in an armored truck and speeds away.
Next, Terry believes his interview is fake, and it’s part of the heist.
Later, Jake and Amy are strategizing away. Rosa finds them with their babysitter, who’s watching a fake baby. It’s all a diversion!
Rosa jumps on top of Gina’s truck while armed with her ax. However, when Gina hits the brakes, Rosa flies off it. Jake buys matching magnet suits for him and Boyle, and they’ll stick themselves on the bottom of the truck and swipe the tube from there.
Oh, and guess who’s back? Bill (Winston Story)! It wouldn’t be a Nine-Nine heist without him. The pandemic didn’t treat him well. His profession, a.k.a. nursing home seductions, really took a hit.
Then, Holt distracts Gina by telling her that Scully and Hitchcock have seized control of her social media accounts. She flees to chastise them. Holt reveals to Jake that he sold him the magnetic suits so that he could control them. Jake is now stuck on the inside of the armored truck while Holt absconds with the tube. Boyle also gets magnetized with his Jakey.
Back with the Sleuth Sisters, Amy learns of Holt’s master plan — give Cheddar the tube at the dog park. Amy adopted a dog, Biscuit, solely for the heist. Biscuit will steal the medal and give it to Amy and Rosa.
But wait! Rosa betrays Amy! She entraps Amy in the car while she hops on the back of none other than Adrian Pimento’s (Jason Mantzoukas) motorcycle.
At the precinct, Terry gives Holt the business. How could he set Terry up for a mock interview? That’s when Holt reveals it was real, and he accompanies Terry back to One Police Plaza to remedy the situation.
Flashback time! Jake tells Amy that everyone will think they have the “authentic” tube, but they’re all fake. Jake placed sentimental gifts in each one. For example, he’s giving Holt the first tie he wore when the latter became captain. I’m not crying; you are.
Additionally, Amy slipped a phony tube to Rosa.
Suddenly, Boyle confronts Jake about a letter of resignation. Jake’s leaving the Nine-Nine! Boyle storms out in a rage.
Jake discloses what happened to Amy. The Perfect Goodbye has been sullied! Thankfully, Jake implanted a tracker in Boyle around the time the latter was shot in the butt.
Amy even references Boyle’s butt holes!
At One Police Plaza, Terry apologizes to the interviewer. Holt interjects on Terry’s behalf, delivering an eloquent speech about Terry’s exceptional leadership skills.
But it was part of the heist! The interviewer locks Holt and Terry in the office.
Later, Rosa confesses her burgeoning feelings for Pimento, and she wants to run away with him. Gina gives Rosa a ride to the airport.
This moment is very rom-com-esque (Nancy Meyers!).
Next, Jake finds Boyle, and they reminisce. There’s a “Nikolaj” pronunciation drop, which I appreciate.
He gives Boyle his tube gift, and it’s the Fancy Brudgom magazine! They have a besties spread in it!
Then, Jake hands Amy her present. It’s an egg that contains a binder necklace complete with tiny tabs — one for Jake, Amy and Mac. My forking heart.
Then, Jake cuts Amy out of the scheming.
We see Jake and Boyle standing amid the fireworks the former purchased for the Brooklyn Bridge display. Suddenly, they start counting down and … boom!
Jake wakes up in the hospital, and Amy informs him he’s been in a coma for seven years. The fireworks hit him in the head, culminating in severe head trauma. Boyle was so remorseful that he left New York to be a small-town sheriff in Arizona.
Meanwhile, Teddy (Kyle Bornheimer) arrives on the scene. He’s been there for Amy physically and as a father figure for Mac. Jake is in hell.
Thankfully, it’s all a ruse. An elaborate hoax Amy orchestrated. We see the hospital walls fall to reveal the Nine-Nine. Amy learns the real tube containing the Medal of Valor is in the fake baby. She handcuffs Jake to the bed and flees.
Back at One Police Plaza, Terry and Holt make their escape. Holt gives us a “Bingpot!” and I’m content.
Now, Jake confronts Amy for her scheme. Amy chloroformed him and Boyle. In addition, she planted the resignation letter and sold Jake the fireworks.
Teddy proposes to Amy again. It’s his thing, you know?
Mlepnos (Fred Armisen) emerges from the shadows and gives Jake a baby bird for the handcuff keys. How full-circle — Mlepnos was in the pilot episode.
Jake escapes and discovers the fake baby is bereft of the tube. So, Amy, Jake, Boyle, and Scully look for it while Holt and Terry pursue them. They wind up at the same storage facility where Jake and Amy worked their first case with Holt (From the pilot!).
Holt has the perfect goodbye planned, including a bevy of sentimental gifts for everyone. The whole heist was a façade. Oh, and Holt was in cahoots with the interviewer the entire time. He reveals that Terry is officially the captain of the Nine-Nine.
We see Jake and Amy’s presents mixed in with Holt’s. Amid the confusion, a storage unit opens to reveal Rosa and Gina with the actual tube. They’ve even decorated the space for a party. Rosa lied about Pimento as a means of manipulating Amy.
Then, Bill proceeds to lock them all inside the unit. He has the real tube now!
Holt’s special celebrity guest, a famous cellist, emerges from her hiding spot. It’s Joanna Newsom, Andy Samberg’s real-life wife! This cameo is the cutest thing ever!
Jake tells the group he’s resigning from the NYPD, effective immediately. And now The Perfect Goodbye is ruined because they’re locked in a storage facility.
But fear not! Captain Jeffords bestows the masses with a rousing speech. Next, he seamlessly bursts through the wall like the Kool-Aid Man, complete with an “Oh, yeah!”
Thankfully, they have a tracker on Bill. The squad returns to the precinct to find Hitchcock in the flesh. He never went to Brazil, nor did he retire! He paid Bill to give him the real tube, so now he’s the winner of the heist. Jake dubs him The Grand Champion of the Nine-Nine.
Instead of an expensive celebration, everyone decides to drink and hang out at the precinct. Gina puts cement in their drinks, which is classic Linetti.
Amy and Rosa exchange “I love yous,” and this Sleuth Sister’s heart is whole. My cup runneth over. Gina steals diamonds from the evidence locker and flees.
Hitchcock and Scully share a long embrace. One laden with Wing Slutz sauce.
Finally, Holt and Jake have a moment. Holt calls back the robot joke from the first episode. Then, he confesses that if he ever had a son, he’d want him to be like Jake. This part made me legitimately cry. To me, Jake and Holt’s relationship is the crux of Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Jake struggled with maturity, and he never had a solid father figure in his life. Now, he’s growing up with his Dadptain and being the father to Mac he always wanted.
Holt even says, “Title of your sex movie.” It’s adorable. As the squad leaves, Jake snags his nameplate. They all board the elevator together.
Flash forward a year later. Terry is having a meeting with his crew, which includes Boyle, Hitchcock and Scully. Suddenly, Jake makes a grand entrance for the Halloween Heist. Yes, Halloween. Rosa, Amy, Holt and Gina also show up for fun. Jake persuades Terry to allow the heist to go as planned. They’ll be doing this every year now. Forever.
Terry shouts, “Nine-Nine!” and it’s perfect.
That’s how you end a series! Watching these characters evolve has been a treat. Every one of them has grown considerably, from Jake learning to embrace maturity to Holt letting loose. From Amy succumbing to her silly side and Boyle finding his family.
This show means so much to me. I’ll miss it terribly, but I’m happy it exists. Now I can rewatch it to my heart’s content.
I have one gripe with this season, and it’s the lack of good Hitchcock/Scully content. We were a bit shortchanged in that regard.
Regardless, everyone got their happy ending, and that’s enough for me.
Nine-Nine, squad! I’ll love you forever—title of your sex movie.