- Badass Creed: "NINE-NINE!"
- Badass Crew: They've brought down drug rings, mob bosses and corrupt cops and all individually qualify as badass in their own way.
- Badass Family: They're not related (at least at the beginning - as of the end of Season 5, Amy and Jake are married, and Charles and Gina are siblings through their parents' marriage), but make no mistake about it: these guys consider themselves to be a family, and all of them are capable of wrecking a perp's day if given the chance (yes, even Gina).
- Beauty, Brains and Brawn: The women fit these roles.
- Gina - Beauty. She's the most feminine and cares a great deal about her looks.
- Amy - Brains. She's highly intelligent and is enthusiastically nerdy about police work.
- Rosa - Brawn. She's an intimidating badass who is the quickest to resort to violence.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: They all have their own set of quirks and eccentricities but are nevertheless effective at their jobs... except Scully and Hitchcock, most of the time.
- Conditioned to Accept Horror: Played for Laughs. After seeing a potential eyewitness have a freakout when they see a grisly crime scene, Jake mentions that he always forgets how "weirdly numb" to horrific things they all are.
- Gentle Touch vs. Firm Hand: All over the place. Most clearly, Holt (firm hand) to Terry's "gentle touch", but Rosa is always the firm hand to whichever character she is paired with.
- Good Is Not Soft: Except Gina, all of the Nine-Nine are motivated by a genuine desire to do good, spread justice. They're also not to be messed with, as they are a highly capable team who can and have taken down many criminals.
- ManChildren: It has been made clear by Terry in "The Party" that the co-workers have a tendency to engage in immature activities. Even Ray Holt, the most mature character of the main cast, has bouts of immaturity.
- No Social Skills: To varying degrees, but in general for a group of police officers the Nine-Nine don't exactly excel when it comes to personal skills:
- Peralta is on the 'lesser' side of the scale; he can be very charming when he wants to be, but his immaturity and Cloud Cuckoolander tendencies frequently gets in the way.
- Holt's robotic, stoic nature frequently suggests that he barely seems to understand how humans work at times.
- Santiago gets nervous, awkward, and flustered easily, leading her to babble, stumble over her words, and do strange things out of sheer panic.
- Diaz shares Holt's robotic stoicism and his lack of understanding of how normal human emotions work, but with added anger issues on top of it.
- Boyle just blurts out whatever thoughts go through his head regardless of how weird or creepy they come across, and in general doesn't exactly have a great grasp of the concepts of 'embarrassment' or 'appropriateness'.
- Like Peralta, Gina can also be very charming, but her fundamental narcissism means that she's usually utterly disinterested in the people she's interacting with to begin with.
- Hitchcock and Scully just seem to live in their own strange, not-very-bright little world.
- About the only member of the squad who seems able to effectively navigate adult human social interactions on a consistent basis is Jeffords, which frequently places him in the Only Sane Man role when it comes to this. A Running Gag is that whenever the Nine-Nine is representing the precinct or interacting en masse with non-cops in a non-police work related social setting, he frequently ends up having to take them all aside and mentor them in how to actually interact with people.
- Sitcom Character Archetypes:
- The Square: Amy, Terry.
- The Wisecracker: Jake, Rosa.
- The Bully: Rosa, Gina.
- The Dork: Amy.
- The Goofball: Jake, Charles, Gina (on rare occasion, when she's not being the Bully).
- The Sage: Holt.
- Town Girls: High-maintenance dance enthusiast Gina is the femme, stone-cold badass Rosa is the butch, and Go-Getter Girl Amy is neither.
- True Companions: They're basically an extended family who have each other's backs no matter what.
A cocky, arrogant and immature but talented NYPD detective stationed in Brooklyn's 99th Precinct. Although extremely capable, he refuses to take his job seriously. His disdain for the rules and authority figures and his drive to single-handedly prove his superiority to everyone around him brings him into immediate conflict with his new commanding officer.
- Adorkable: He can be, especially when it comes to quoting his favorite movies.
- All Love Is Unrequited: The Season 2 premiere sets Peralta up to be this towards Santiago. Unlike many cases, however, although he initially attempts to deny he ever felt anything for her and has no desire to ruin her relationship, he eventually decides to be open and forthright about it with her. It's also implied that Santiago is not entirely unreceptive to his feelings, since when he tried to deny them she was clearly a bit disappointed about it.
- Santiago is confirmed to at least have had feelings for him in the past, when Jake had moved on. As of Season 3, this trope is no longer in effect, when the two begin dating.
- Ambiguous Disorder: His Hyper-Awareness, distracted nature and general habits causes speculation that he may have ADHD.
- Ambiguously Bi:
- Jake asks Holt's art teacher out in "The Wednesday Incident", although it's not made clear whether it's a serious proposal. Given that both times Jake asked someone out, male or female, was after they'd revealed that Holt had vented at length about him, he could also be trying to make friends and give them his version of events.
- He also has no qualms about kissing Holt to escape jail in Florida and confesses to Santiago that Holt has really soft lips.
- The way he looks at his former partner Stevie Schillens isn't much different from how he often looks at Amy.
- Additionally, he gets very into roleplaying Rosa coming out to her parents in "Game Night." And in that same episode, he calls a male perp hot.
- In "DFW", he's quick to claim that of Amy's 7 brothers, Tony has the best body, after Amy hesitates to respond.Jake: Tony, right? it's very clearly Tony, I don't know why she hesitated. Tony got bod!
- He has a Stupid Sexy Flanders moment with the two Swedish cops:[...] Awful, for sure... All tall and beautiful....
- Cites "Hard boobs on both men and women" as a positive of the The Fast and the Furious movies
- The first three episodes of the sixth season each see him comment on men being hot. In "The Tattler", he's shown having behaved as though he had a crush around a male high school classmate.
- In The Golden Child, Jake gets captured by a bunch of Brazillian mobsters because he was Distracted by the Sexy.Jake: (to a male mobster) My God, you're even more stunning up close.
- Ambiguously Jewish: In the first season, at least; it's heavily implied that he's half-Jewish on his mother's side but he's not actually confirmed Jewish until "Charges and Specs" (the last episode of season one), where we cut to a scene at his Bar Mitzvah.
- Angst? What Angst?: Deliberately Invoked by him. His preferred method of dealing with negative emotions is to, in his own words, "repress the hell out of them." He also applies this to his friends, as whenever they're going through something, his go-to response is to try and distract them and take their minds off of it.
- Bad Impressionists: Played for laughs; Peralta prides himself on his spot-on impression of Holt, but this is pretty much limited to barking "Peralta, that's enough!" in a slightly stern voice. Gina seems to like it, though:Gina: Captain Holt, is that you? No, wait — it's Jake, nailing your voice exactly.
Jake: Right? The trick is to find a key phrase you know exactly how he'd say. Mine is, "Peralta, that's enough!"
Gina: Seriously Jake, this is getting scary.
Amy: [Slightly seductively] If you ever want to bust out that Holt impression at home... I'd be okay with that.
- In season three, Amy also seems to like Jake's impression of Holt, although this is implied to be less to do with quality and more to do with Amy's infatuation with Holt:
Jake: [Surprised] Oh! Okay. Duly noted. Super disturbing, but I'm definitely gonna do it!
- Berserk Button:
- When Dustin Whitman calls him "Joke Peralta," it's enough to fling Peralta into arresting him with zero evidence.
- In "Old School," when Peralta punches out his former "hero" for derisively calling Holt a "homo."
- Big Brother Instinct: He cares about his half-sister Kate a lot.
- Big Ego, Hidden Depths: Lampshaded, so far.Jake: Humility over! I'm amazing!
- Blood Knight: Whenever he realizes he got himself involved with or targetted by violent criminals (armed robbers, serial killers, mobsters, etc) his first reaction is sheer excitement.Terry: I guess...someone's trying to kill him.Jake: That's right, someone's trying to kill him. Whoo! (Gets stares) I mean, a man's life is in danger. Probably shouldn't be so pumped.
- Book Dumb:
- He's only read fifteen books in his lifetime, he's very bad at basic math, and his spelling and penmanship leaves much to be desired.
- Subverted by the fact that Jake is Brilliant, but Lazy, and even Amy admits he's just as smart as her, if not more so, but often hides it beneath his laziness and goofy personality.
- Brilliant, but Lazy:
- Whenever he has to do any actual paperwork far from the action, or soldier through a "slump," he's in agony. But in truth, he's one of, if not the best detective in the precinct when he wants to be, and can solve cases thought to be cold that have been open for years.
- As stated above, even Amy admits Jake is just as smart as her (specifically, in "The Puzzle Master"), if not smarter, but as indicated by this trope, he often doesn't apply himself, and hides his intelligence beneath his goofy exterior.
- Broken Pedestal: Poor Jake seems doomed to discover that every man he idolized before Captain Holt is an irredeemable jerk:
- In "Old School", he's is initially thrilled to meet his idol, reporter Jimmy Brogan, who wrote a true crime novel about 1970s New York cops that inspired Peralta to become a cop. He gradually becomes disillusioned with Brogan's hard-edged 'old school' ways until he eventually punches Brogan after Brogan makes a homophobic slur about Captain Holt.
- In "Captain Peralta", while freely admitting that his dad was an unrepentant philanderer who made life very difficult for his mother, Jake is still excited to see the man and spend time with him for the first time in several years. Turns out his father only showed up to get Jake to help him beat a drug smuggling charge.
- In "The 9-8", Jake discovers that his first partner on the force, Stevie, to whom he was very close, has a habit of planting evidence on suspects he "knows" to be guilty if he can't prove it legitimately.
- In Season 4, he finds out that Lt. Hawkins, a cop that he idolized, is behind the bank robberies he and Rosa are investigating and addicted to cocaine.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Good at crime solving, but it comes so naturally to him that he doesn't have the patience to actually work through cases when he isn't instantly successful. He tends to goof off and play around at work, particularly reenacting his many favorite cop films.
- Butt-Monkey: His coworkers have a tendency to make him into this sometimes by blaming him for things that aren't actually his fault. And surprisingly for his character, he usually just accepts this as true and tries to fix the mistake. For example, in "Ava", both Terry and his wife continually get angry at Jake for everything going wrong whilst she's giving birth, even though he is literally the only character taking things seriously and trying to help her. His response to the criticism is to just work harder.
- Cannot Spit It Out: For most of the first season, Peralta has this regarding his feelings towards Santiago; in "The Bet" Boyle likens his childish trolling of her to a fourth-grader who pulls the pigtails of the girl he has a crush on because he doesn't know how else to express what he truly feels, and in "Operation: Broken Feather" he gets very closed-off and cagey when Santiago presses him about the real reasons that he's so vehemently opposed to her accepting a promotion to the Major Crimes unit. Does spit it out right before he goes undercover in "Charges and Specs".
- Can't Hold His Liquor: Possibly implied in "Old School" after an epic evening of drinking with 'old school' reporter Jimmy Brogan. His increasingly incoherent drunken texts to Santiago suggest that he finds hard liquor a bit difficult to cope with, and the next morning he's a shattered hungover wreck for hours.
- Casual Kink: Jake is turned on by his partner being mean to him (as seen in HalloVeen), and being physically hurt/dominated by them, as seen in The Puzzle Master. Both times, he's very appreciative of his partner doing it to him and asks them to do it more/harder. He also referred to Sophia's code word "Jericho" as a safe word in The Road Trip, so he knows at least that part of the terminology.
- "Oooh, 'tied to my desk'. Mr. Grey will see you now, Sarge."
- He has a tendency to refer to things he finds brilliantly practical as "smort." (Not "smart," "smort.")
- Has a tendency to pronounce "Nice" as "Noice" too.
- "Cool, cool, cool, cool, cool..." comes up a lot. Especially when he's nervous or stressed out.
- "No doubt, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt."
- "Sweet. Sweet, sweet, sweet."
- Often follows an Accidental Innuendo (from himself or others) with "...title of your sex tape."
- Character Development: Over the course of the series, he becomes more responsible, well-read, and considerate of others, as well as a team player.
- Character Tics: Bites his lower lip a lot especially when nervous.
- The Chessmaster: In "HalloVeen". Which is ironic, considering his chess experience comes from learning how to shoot chess pieces with a BB gun. He doesn't even know how the pieces move.
- Childhood Friends: With Gina. Andy Samberg and Chelsea Peretti are also this in Real Life.
- Cloudcuckoolander: A mild example; he has some very strange ideas about how the world works.Jake: Is the sky just a big blue hat that the world wears?
Rosa: No. And no one has ever thought that.
- Cool Loser: More noticeably between Seasons 1 and 2, before he and Amy got together, but still appears once or twice.
- Cowboy Cop: He claims that he doesn't like following the rules. It's played with, however, as several episodes demonstrate that while he wants to be a 1970s-style Cowboy Cop so much, he's actually more by-the-book than he appears and despises the stereotyping that came with the '70s Cowboy Cop detectives.
- Crappy Holidays:
Jake: As you all know, I hate Thanksgiving. The Pilgrims were murderers and turkey tastes like napkins.
- Hates Thanksgiving with a passion in the first season. He doesn't want to celebrate, he just wants to eat disgusting food and watch football. He actively badmouths the holiday during the entire Thanksgiving episode. This is down to having miserable memories of them growing up, with his mother being to busy at work and his father having left them.
- By the Season Five episode "Two Turkeys", he seems to have gotten over this, and says that he's dreamed of having a big family Thanksgiving someday. He even includes a Thanksgiving turkey and stuffing among his post-prison feast.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: His immaturity, arrogance, disdain for certain police protocols and slightly out there personality aside, Peralta is very good at his job. Best shown in the first episode where he is introduced playing around for several minutes at the sight of a crime scene, only to then reveal he'd already solved the case before his partner even got to the scene. Likewise, despite his youthful appearance and average build, he has no problems holding his own and coming out on top in fights.
- Deadpan Snarker: He can never stop himself from snarking even when it's not appropriate.
- Deep Cover Agent: Becomes one for the FBI in "Charges and Specs" in order to take down the Ianucci crime family.
- Defiant Captive: He was one in "Sabotage". He was held at gunpoint, kidnapped, and was Bound and Gagged for half the episode. Him being tied to a chair and held at gunpoint never stopped him from trying to reason out with his captor and making a daring escape.
- Disappeared Dad: His dad walked out when he was a kid. This actually causes a temporary truce with the fire department, as Fire Marshall Boone's dad did the same thing, and is the reason why he's so jittery about Jeffords getting back in the field — he doesn't want Jeffords' daughters to grow up without a father.
- Distressed Dude: He gets into danger more than anyone else in the show.
- Ditzy Genius: Amy, Holt and Terry have all cited his intelligence and detective skills, he made Detective shockingly quick, and can formulate a plan for almost any situation...yet his penmanship and spelling are awful, his literacy leaves something to be desired and he has a tendency to act before thinking.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: He can come in for a bit of this treatment. While his own immaturity and irreverent behavior doesn't help matters, the people around him can sometimes look down on him or assume that's all there is to him without considering his tremendous loyalty, competence and determination. For one example, in "Ava" Sgt. Jeffords is driven to panic by the thought of his wife giving birth while under the care of Jake, whereas in fact Jake was tremendously calm, helpful and supportive, and it was in fact everyone else in the precinct who made things much harder than they had to be.
- Embarrassing Nickname:
- It turns out his mob nickname while undercover is "Jake Lady-Hands".
- His grandmother calls him "Pineapples" and Amy enjoys using it against him.
- Loses it in "The Tattler" when people from his high school keep calling him the Tattler.
- Eagle-Eye Detection: Jake's success as a detective relies a lot on this, he's very good at noticing when the details fit together and when they don't.
- Everyone Has Standards: He'll snark at everyone but draws the line at anything genuinely offensive as seen when he punched Jimmy Brogan for calling Captain Holt a "homo". He also makes no effort to hide his disgust with a man he questioned who admits to ogling women in a yoga studio, saying he isn't sure if it's any better than killing someone.
- Evil Counterpart: The Pontiac Bandit aka Doug Judy, who shares his Pop-Cultured Badass and Agent Peacock tendencies and love of Batman Gambits, except in the role of a Lovable Rogue rather than a Cowboy Cop.
- Fair Cop: Peralta is a fairly attractive man who gets a lot of attention from women in-show. He refers to his good looks several times, though it's clear that he's more or less joking.Kevin: Because he's gay, Raymond has been put through hell by his colleagues, many of whom, quite frankly, look exactly like you.
Jake: Devastatingly handsome?
- The Fettered: For all Jake's desire to be a Cowboy Cop he is a firm believer in law and order. Likewise Jake has shown on multiple occasions that underneath all his love for his job, he is motivated by a very strong sense of justice, and his zealousness in the pursuit of it is honestly incredible. Jake also really dislikes anything that interferes in justice's path, be it office politics or clever defense lawyers. Jakes is always willing to suffer in the pursuit of what is right.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Surprisingly, considering his general personality, he is the responsible sibling to his half-sister Kate's foolish sibling.
- Freudian Excuse: It's implied a lot of his issues with authority and his Manchild tendencies stem from his Disappeared Dad and the fact that his mother had to work long hours to support them, often leaving him alone for long stretches of time.
- Freudian Slip:
- The aforementioned Freudian Excuse leads to Jake inadvertently blurting out "Thanks, Dad" after Holt briefs him on one of his cases — within earshot of the whole precinct.
- While trying to ask Amy out in Season 2 and becoming increasingly frustrated by her inattention, he tries to riff on the Running Gag where he takes a mildly suggestive comment of hers out of context and adds "...the name of your sex tape!" Only on this occasion, it comes out as "...the name of our sex tape! [Beat] What?! No!"
- Season 5 has him telling Holt "I love you, Da aptain. Daptain. It's the cool new way of saying Captain. It's from the world of hip hop.".
- Geek Physiques: Jake is noted to be physically weak, due to his terrible diet.
- Genius Ditz: An incredibly competent detective, but has only ever read 15 books and thinks 'coitus' is pronounced 'colitis'.
- Guile Hero: While he has no problems resorting to violence when its required, Jakes go-to tactic when dealing with situations is to rely on charm, persuasion, manipulation and trickery to achieve his goals. This ranges from sweet-talking information out of potential suspects, to using misdirection tactics to force others to show their hand.
- Graceful Loser: In the second Halloween episode, after Holt explains how he beat Peralta in their bet.
- Hairstyle Inertia: Averted for laughs, in a flashback Jake from eight years ago has Andy Samberg's distinct overgrown curls from 2009.
- Has a Type: As stated by Boyle, Jake's type is "beautiful Latinas", and seems to be especially true for smart, pantsuit-wearing Latinas. In season 2, Jake briefly dates Sophia, a Latina defense lawyer. At the beginning of season 3, he begins dating Amy. Averted, however, with Rosa. Even though Rosa is Latina, Jake is simply good friends with her and not attracted to her.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Wears a leather jacket almost all the time.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: As of the season four finale, he's falsely believed to be a Dirty Cop and a bank robber by everyone except the Nine-Nine.
- Hero-Worshipper: For all his irreverence and apparent disrespect, he clearly looks to Holt as a father-figure and idol.
- Heroic BSoD: Season Four ends with him entering one. It's incredibly sobering to see Jake of all people pushed to the point of despair.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Charles.
- Hidden Depths: In "The Bet", Boyle suggests that his teasing behavior towards Santiago is concealing genuine feelings for her. It's also been indicated at times that his Manchild behavior is a defense mechanism stemming from a rather sad childhood and lonely adulthood. And for all his goofing off, he's genuinely devoted to being a good cop to the point of almost being The Perfectionist — in "Undercover", he considers his undercover operation a complete failure and is driven to misery because one of the targets got away. To put this in context, there were sixteen targets, and as Boyle, Holt and the FBI point out, Peralta's work directly led to the other fifteen being arrested and convicted.
- Hot Librarian: He apparently has a fetish for these... and for the regular kind as well. Which makes his attraction to Amy quite understandable on reflection.
- Hyper-Awareness: Downplayed, he can miss things (such as the fact his Captain was gay, despite an article declaring it it being framed on Holt's wall), however Jake is incredibly observant and often picks up details that the others miss.
- Incorruptible Pure Pureness: In "Nutri Boom", Jake refuses a bribe to drop his investigation into Nutri Boom, citing his "Big-ass moral compass" before ripping up the check.
- In Touch with His Feminine Side: Took tap for three years, is a proficient ballroom dancer, likes being the little spoon, once broke his wrist from petting a horse too hard, and his favorite artist is Taylor Swift.Peralta: I was detained once by Taylor Swift's security team, but that was a misunderstanding. (dreamily) She's probably gonna write a song about me.
- Insufferable Genius: He's arguably the most brilliant detective in the department and doesn't hesitate to toot his own horn about it.
- It's All About Me: Peralta is a good detective, but he has a gigantic ego; he often tries to shut out his team-mates from investigations so he can collect all the glory (which backfires on him in "The Vulture" when his delays in solving a high-profile case due to this create an opening for Major Crimes to seize jurisdiction away from him just before he solves it) or tries to take over if someone else is the primary detective (and if he can't, tends to slack off instead).
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Down to a tee. His arrogant self-absorption, immaturity and conviction of his own brilliance is balanced with a genuinely friendly, likable and empathetic nature. He's genuinely a very caring friend, if a bit thoughtless at times, and frequently pulls out all the stops to make the people he loves happy. Even if his plans go wrong and he makes things worse for them, he doesn't try to defend himself or pass off the blame like he does with many other things - he just works non-stop to make things right.
- Kansas City Shuffle: Misdirection seems to be Peralta's go-to strategy for his Holloween heists, and overall one of his favourite tactics:
- In the first year, Jake wins the Halloween bet with Holt by distracting Holt with a series of lame attempts to break into Holt's office while the other detectives worked their way through Holt's security precautions and stole his Medal of Valor.
- The second year, he and the rest of the squad make an elaborate attempt to steal Holt's wristwatch to distract Holt from the pickpocket Jake had hired to steal the watch.
- In the third year, he and Charles distracted Gina with a failed attempt to break into the Interrogation Room so that she wouldn't notice Rosa breaking into the Interrogation Room and stealing the crown.
- The fifth year:
- Jake and Charles have Bill pretend to be Gina, and he claims (as Gina) to have taken the belt and wants them to set up baby toys in exchange for clues. They use this opportunity to get away with the belt themselves.
- Later, Jake pulls off an AMAZING quadruple-shuffle; he has people dressed as handmaids from The Handmaid's Tale to distract them while he seemingly takes Amy's safe key, where the belt is. In reality, he really had Bill swap out the safe with an identical one, who took the real safe to the evidence locker, extracted the belt, removed a tracker placed on it, hid the belt, and then led everyone else on a wild goose chase via the removed tracker. Then Amy followed Jake to the evidence locker and found the belt quickly, but didn't realize it was his plan all along to have Amy find it, which he altered to say "Amy Santiago, will you marry me?"
- His plan to steal a phone with an incriminating video in "Coral Palms, Part One" rests upon Jordan Crafton discovering they were trying to pay her in fake money, so that he could switch the phone in the confusion created whilst he seemingly tried to escape.
- Keet: He's very energetic and upbeat.
- Like Brother and Sister: More or less has this dynamic with Gina, as they've been friends since childhood. As a result, she's a lot gentler with him than anyone else, and he generally doesn't snark as much at her.
- Loophole Abuse: In the pilot, Peralta first skirts the "must wear ties" rule by wearing it tied around his torso under his shirt. Later, he puts on the tie, but isn't wearing pants.
- Magnetic Hero: Implied as backstory. Jake has a special relationship with almost all of the other main characters, and it's this as much as his since-downplayed brilliance as a detective which has made him The Heart of the group in an odd way. In chronological order:
- He's known Gina since childhood and they grew up in the same neighborhood together.
- He was at Police Academy with Rosa and they've been close friends ever since.
- He's BFFs with Charles. Along with Terry, they've all been at the Nine-Nine together since at least 2007.
- He and Amy were partners and rivals in the year before the series started, began dating in Season 2, and finally got engaged in Season 5.
- He becomes Holt's favorite and pet project, despite their mutual hazing.
- Surprisingly, Terry takes the longest to come around considering him just a work friend well into Season 2... up until he and Sharon make Jake the godfather to their third daughter Ava in Season 3.
- Madness Mantra: Season Four ends with him entering a Heroic BSoD, and repeating his usual Catchphrase of "Cool, cool, cool, cool, cool, cool..." over and over again when he and Rosa are found guilty of a crime they did not commit, and are sentenced to fifteen years in prison. You can just see him breaking.
- Malaproper: He has a tendency to mangle common analogies and sayings. However, he often does it on purpose, like saying "tushy" instead of "touché".
- Manchild: Very immature and Book Dumb. Also cracks jokes at the wrong time and teases his coworkers.
- Men Can't Keep House: His desk and locker are extremely messy, and his horrendous spending habits are reflected in his apartment. This is in contrast to Santiago, who's more of a Neat Freak, and Holt, who's a stickler for the rules.Holt: Here are two pictures. One is your locker, the other is a garbage dump in the Philippines. Can you tell which... is which?
Peralta: ... That one's the dump?
Holt: They're both your locker!
Peralta: Gah! I should've guessed that. He's good.
- "Metaphor" Is My Middle Name: Jake's middle name is Sherlock, he legally changed it.
- Momma's Boy: Jake is clearly very devoted to and protective of his mother Karen.
- Motor Mouth: Jake tends to run his mouth at inopportune moments, especially when he's nervous or excited about something. Unfortunately, he simultaneously disengages the filter between his brain and his mouth, with predictable (and hilarious) results.
- Must Have Caffeine: Downplayed, but Jake rarely enters the precinct or a crime scene without coffee.
- My Sister Is Off-Limits!: He throws his half sister's ex-boyfriend out of his apartment when he starts forcing her to be in a relationship with him. Justified by the fact that said ex-boyfriend is a horrible person.
- Never My Fault: Reflexively blames others when he's at fault. Often he admits to it immediately after (although primarily because it is, in fact, glaringly obvious who is really at fault and the people he's talking to are not complete imbeciles), but his reflex is to shift the blame.
- The Nicknamer: Frequently gives nicknames to people and he's quite good at them, such as calling twelve criminals "The Dirty Dozen".
- In the cold open from "Boyle's Hunch," Jake makes his entrance spitting rapid-fire nicknames for his new pet tarantula: "I call him Jake Junior, AKA Spidey-Klum, AKA Mrs. Doubtspider, AKA Joe Spiden, AKA Tarantula Basset, AKA Spi-Dermot Mulroney."
- Nightmare Fetishist: Downplayed and played for laughs. He has a tendency to comment that he gets a little aroused by things that he shouldn't.Holt: I will slit you both open from mouth to anus and wear you like jackets.
Peralta: Huh, is it weird that that turned me on a little bit?
- No Social Skills: Peralta is on the "lesser" side of the scale; he can be very charming when he wants to be, but his immaturity and Cloud Cuckoolander tendencies frequently get in the way.
- Nostalgia Ain't Like It Used to Be: In season one, he has a romanticized view of the old school cops that used to drink, ignore proper procedure and arrest the criminal with violence if needed. Soon however, he is faced with what was truly there: Holt explains it was a time of brutality, corruption and misogyny where he wouldn't have achieved the rank of captain and Amy and Rosa would never have become detectives. The spell is fully broken when the man that is advocating for the "Old School" cops style uses a homophobic slur to talk about Holt.
- Not So Above It All: For all his vocal dislike of everything related to the fire department, he jumps at the chance to have a turn on the fire pole when Fire Marshall Boone offers it to him.
- Odd Couple: He tends to generate this dynamic with his co-workers:
- With Holt, he's the irreverent young white detective to Holt's stern, serious and experienced African-American captain.
- With Santiago, he's a childish, laid back foil to her driven, professional go-getter.
- With Boyle, he's the cool guy to Boyle's awkward bumbler. Despite this, they're best friends (although Boyle's Yes-Man tendencies towards Peralta no doubt help here).
- With Diaz, he's the friendly, sociable one while she's... not.
- With Jeffords, he's a head-in-the-clouds and immature bachelor while Jeffords is a grounded and devoted family man.
- Odd Friendship: He is a friendly, hyperactive goofball while Rosa is a grumpy and aggressive badass. Despite this, they've been close friends ever since their police academy days and have an unshakeable trust in each other.
- Official Couple: He and Amy begin dating at the start of Season 3 and get married in the Season 5 finale.
- The One That Got Away: In season 2, he's in his thirties and still obsessed with Jenny Gildenhorn, the girl who dumped him at his Bar Mitzvah.
- Only Sane Man: For all his goofiness, childishness and immaturity, he takes this role a lot more often than you'd think (which might give you some idea about the general level of sanity operating within the Nine-Nine). Sure, he has some slightly strange ideas about the world, some gaps in his knowledge base and he's riddled with daddy issues, but he's in many ways a lot less eccentric and a lot more down-to-earth than several of his co-workers, lacking Holt's robotic stoicism, Amy's dorky neuroses, Charles's Creepy Goodness, Rosa's aggressive lack of social skills, Gina's all-consuming narcissism and Scully and Hitchcock's dimwittedness.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: He is very moody in episode 20 of season 5, Justified as Rosa is in a shooting and Jake is scared out of his mind that something happened to her.
- Pants-Free: In the pilot, Peralta at first resists putting on a tie as Captain Holt asked him. Later, he is seen at a desk in records wearing one, and Holt commends him for it. Then Peralta stands up, revealing that all he has on under his waist is a Speedo. Then Holt calls everyone in to see Peralta's hard work...
- Parental Neglect: His dad abandoned him when he was seven and his mother was forced by this to work more in order to support them both, leaving him alone for long periods of time. Both of which have clearly caused several of his issues.
- Parental Substitute: He sees Holt as his a replacement father figure. Holt, as much as he tries to deny it, likely mutually considers Jake as the son he never had.
- Platonic Life-Partners: With Rosa. They knew each other from the police academy and trust each other completely, yet there is not even a hint of romantic attraction between them.
- Pop-Cultured Badass: He prefers Die Hard, but he'll reference everything from Captain Phillips to Game of Thrones at the slightest opportunity.
- Sad Clown: For all his goofiness and laid-back demeanor, Jake is a mess of self-esteem and abandonment issues who deals with emotions by making inappropriate smartass quips.
- Shutting Up Now: He often finds himself doing that when he makes a quip or drops a one-liner during an otherwise serious moment.
- Sore Loser: A self-admitted example; in "The Bet", when Holt expresses concern over the effects that the bet between Peralta and Santiago might have on their working relationship. (Granted, he seems to have outgrown this by Season two.)Holt: You are colleagues, and the fallout from this bet has the potential to put a strain on your professional relationship.
Peralta: Only if I lose. I'm a terrible sport.
- Spanner in the Works: When Jeffords and Holt were trying to make the Precinct run more efficiently in "Operation: Broken Feather," everything falls apart when Peralta comes back from his case.
- Stalker with a Crush/Stalker Without a Crush: Peralta seems to keep a lot of tabs on both Jenny Gildenhorn, the girl he had a crush on as an adolescent, and Eddie Fung, the boy who stole Jenny away at Peralta's Bar Mitzvah.
- Stepford Snarker: Brought up in "The Party" where he admits it's a defense mechanism.Kevin: Because he's gay, Raymond has been put through hell by his colleagues, many of whom — to put it frankly — look exactly like you.
Peralta: Devastatingly handsome? [Kevin frowns] Sorry, I'm not comfortable with emotions.
- The Storyteller:
- He's a variation of this - he jumps at the chance to invent elaborate fake identities, each complete with a Troperiffic backstory.
- Double Subverted in "Tactical Village", where he abandons his "Agent Rex Buckingham" persona when things get serious.Jake: I'm playing a new character - a no-nonsense detective whose only goal is to set this course record. [beat] His name is Vic Kovack, he's an ex-Navy Seal who was double crossed and Left for Dead. I don't have time to go into his backstory!
- Sweet Tooth: His idea of a healthy breakfast? Gummi bears wrapped in a Fruit Roll-Up.Holt: I pity your dentist.
Peralta: Ah. Joke's on you, I don't have a dentist!
- Technician vs. Performer: The Performer to Santiago's Technician.
- That Came Out Wrong: He's on both ends of the spectrum:
- Therapy Is for the Weak: His opinion for a very long time. Subverted in episode "The Therapist" as Jake says he needs to see a therapist for his trust and abandonment issues.
- In season six, it is revealed that his attitude towards therapy is because his family was made to go to therapy due to his behaviour as a child and he blames it (and, by extension, himself) for their divorce.
- This Loser Is You: Book-dumb, has a terrifyingly unhealthy diet, and is in crushing debt.
- Too Clever by Half: A common Aesop of the show is Peralta realizing that he's bitten off more than he can chew and that he needs to remember he's part of a team, and the rest of the precinct can help him.
- Took a Level in Kindness: He begins the series firmly in Jerk with a Heart of Gold territory, but by Season 5, he's almost a straight-up Nice Guy, in addition to becoming a team player rather than the lone wolf he started off as.
- Undying Loyalty: For all his competitiveness and immaturity, he's a very good friend when it comes down to the crunch. He'd walk through fire for the people on his squad and, if he ever oversteps the line, will pull out all the stops to make amends.
- Unsportsmanlike Gloating: He really rubs it in when he wins his bet with Santiago. He also makes a point of gloating to Holt after he wins his bet with him in "Halloween". It's lampshaded by Holt, and Peralta concedes the point:Holt: Huh. A poor winner. I would never have guessed.
Peralta: Yeah, you would have.
- Verbal Backspace: He engages in this when trying to correct his more unfortunate That Came Out Wrong quips.
- Vitriolic Best Buds:
- With Santiago. For all his teasing and pranking, he clearly respects and admires her a great deal.
- A downplayed example with Boyle. Jake can get pretty snarky concerning Charles's eccentricities, and the latter's Yes-Man tendencies can at times make their friendship appear one-sided, but there've been plenty of moments throughout the series which indicate that Jake genuinely values Charles as a close friend.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy:
- Since his real father is a waste, he compensated by trying to get respect from Holt, who he considers to be more of a father to him. Whenever Holt praises him, Jake lights up.
- We see it Played for Drama in "The Box", where Jake's desire for Holt to see him as smart nearly jeopardizes the case
- Workaholic: It's pretty clear that while he may not appear to take it seriously, he doesn't actually have much in his life outside of his job. He also has a noted tendency to bury himself in work as a way of distracting himself from problems in his personal life (such as his unrequited crush on Santiago).
- White Male Lead: The detectives of the 99 and the supporting and oneshot characters are diverse in terms of race and gender, but Jake is the principal protagonist and is young and white. He does subvert the "vaguely Christian" part by being Jewish, though.
- Will They or Won't They?: With Amy, after first realizing he's falling in love with her after calling off his plans for the worst date ever in order to finish a stakeout with her, and they have their first kiss while pretending to be an engaged couple while following a perp. Jake admits his feelings for her at the end of season 1...just before going undercover with the Mafia. Their ongoing UST throughout season 2 ultimately tanks Amy's relationship with Teddy, before the two of them finally get together in the uncertainty of what's going to happen to the Nine-Nine following Holt's departure back to Public Relations. They're officially a couple through season 3 and beyond.
- Yes-Man: In "Lockdown", he temporarily becomes the commanding officer of the precinct. He's over-working to keep everyone calm and happy during the quarantine and reluctant to set boundaries and rules. At first this is harmless when he agrees to his coworkers' requests, like lifting the ban preventing Boyle from saying the word 'succulent' (shudder), but devolves into a precinct-wide riot and where Hitchcock's nap couch is set on fire.
The new commanding officer of the 99th Precinct, which is his first command. Holt is an extremely stern, serious and rules-conscious man who is unimpressed by Peralta's antics. Although an extremely gifted detective, he has been denied his own command for years due to his open homosexuality, thus making him determined to distinguish himself and the 99th Precinct — and even more determined to rein in Peralta while doing so.
- The Ace: This man can pretty much do ANYTHING.
- Aesop Amnesia: No matter how often it is pointed out to him that his feud with Deputy Chief Wuntch is silly, pointless and a distraction from more serious matters, it never seems to sink in.
- Awesomeness by Analysis: He's apparently a huge fan. When watching Moneyball, their use of math and numbers to win games was so impressive it almost brought him to tears.
- Badass Baritone: Holt has a very deep voice that perfectly matches his combat ability.
- Badass Gay: Apparently his career is very impressive, though this is deconstructed somewhat as his homosexuality has prevented him from advancing up the ranks. And now he's finally gotten his long-deserved promotion because he's a Twofer Token Minority.
- Bait-and-Switch Tyrant: This gets addressed and out of the way in pilot.
- Bald, Black Leader Guy: He starts out with a buzzcut, but fits the other stereotypes perfectly. By around season three, he basically is bald.
- The Beastmaster: A downplayed, humorous example; he tends to use his dog, Cheddar, as an ally in the various "Halloween" heists.
- Berserk Button: Oddly enough? The idea that only medical doctors have a claim to the word 'doctor' as opposed to those with doctorates or PhDs makes him erupt.Philip: It's not like we're college professors calling ourselves "doctors.
Holt: Not the same thing, my friend.
Philip: Well, sure it is. When someone has a heart attack on a plane, do they yell out, "Yo, does anybody here have an Art History Ph D?"
Holt: A Ph D is a doctorate. It's literally describing a doctor.
Jake: Maybe let's refocus.
Holt: [Increasingly livid] No! The problem here is that medical practitioners have co-opted the word "doctor.
Jake: Okay, Captain -
Holt: I know we live in a world where aaaaaanyything can mean anything, AND NOBODY EVEN CARES ABOUT ETYMOLO-
[smashcut to Holt and Jake back in the break room]
Holt: Apparently that was a trigger for me.
- Big Brother Instinct: Though he finds his younger sister Debbie annoying, he clearly cares about her, and offers to let her vent after he finds out her husband cheated on her.
- Black and Nerdy: He can easily get lost in the intricacies of a problem and has a tendency to be Hoist by His Own Petard by overthinking a situation. The statistical analysis of Moneyball was enough to move him to tears. He also finds the use of extremely obscure historical references to be both clever and hilarious.
- Blood Knight: Very minor example of this, but when he was mugged in The Wednesday Incident he responded with brutal violence instead of taking the mature way out and complying with the muggers. He also deeply regretted doing it and felt shame about the consequences of his actions.
- Breaking the Glass Ceiling: He's the first gay man to reach the rank of captain. While the fact that he's both gay and black has exposed him to a fair bit of prejudice, his "rarity value" can still cause him problems even when people aren't being hostile - his long, unwanted spell in Public Relations was at least partly because the department thought he was a good way to show off their strides towards diversity.
- By-the-Book Cop: He's older, more experienced, and a stickler for the rules than most of the cast.
- The Captain: Of the 99. His first command, and he wants to show he's earned the position.
- Cassandra Truth: This trope is the reason why Holt comfortably tells Peralta — and only Peralta — the real explanation behind his wrist injury:Holt: I was hula-hooping. Kevin and I attend a class for fitness and for fun.
Peralta: [overjoyed] Oh my God!
Holt: I've mastered all the moves. [produces his phone and shows pictures to Peralta] The Pizza Toss... the Tornado... The Scorpion, the Oopsie-Doodle...
Peralta: Why are you telling me this?!
Holt: [evilly] Because no one... will ever believe you.
[Holt deletes the photos and smirks triumphantly at Peralta]
Peralta: [genuinely furious] You sick son of a bitch!
- Character Development: Holt's still a serious, stoic By-the-Book Cop, but he's much more willing to have fun with the precinct and is more prone to being a bit of a goofball, himself. This can make watching early episodes a bit odd. For instance, in the Cold Open for "Skyfire Circle" (season four), when Jake does the "full bullpen" (sliding across the waxed floor of the precinct in his socks, from Holt's office to the elevator), and crashes into Holt in the process, Holt's response is to lift Jake's arm into the air and gleefully declare, "THE FULL BULLPEN!" This is something season one Holt would've never done.
- The turning point comes in the "Beach House" episode of season 2, in which Holt is wounded that the team lied to him about having a getaway to let off some steam. He understood why they would need such a trip without him, but it felt as if his team would always treat him as a captain, never as a colleague or friend. The group brings him in with a game of "Real Ray or Fake Ray" (in which the players must discern if a quote attributed to Holt is real or not) and from there, he is more participatory in the games and pranks with his team.
- Characterization Marches On: In the first season, he has an interest in food - eg he causally mentions reading Boyle's pizza rankings in the "Sal's Pizza" episode because "it's the only one that measures mouth-feel". Later seasons made a Running Gag about how bland he likes things, especially food - eg he declares he has "zero interest in food" in the "The Road Trip" and talking about how much he hates pizza in the "Halloween IV" episode.
- The Chessmaster: The second Halloween episode, good grief, the SECOND HALLOWEEN EPISODE!!! He manages to well surpass Jake's efforts the previous years, and perfectly engineer everything that occurs. He also started planning for Peralta's retribution three months before.
- Chewing the Scenery: Whenever he's not being stoic and serious, he has a tendency to do this a lot, such as when yelling "VINDICATION", and during the rant when Rosa said he and Kevin needed to bone.
- Cold Ham: He is normally very stoic and dignified (to the point of being The Comically Serious), but his formal and serious way of expressing himself gives everything he says extra dramatic gravitas. And he does have, in his own words, a "flair for the dramatic."
- The Comically Serious:
- In contrast to Peralta's jovial attitude. He's definitely got a sense of humor, but he's such a rock-hard professional that it never rises above the deadpan. A Running Gag is that, despite the fact that Holt never changes his deadpan, flat delivery style, people from outside the precinct tend to find him utterly hilarious, much to the confusion of the people he works with.Holt: What's this I hear about you being on administrative leave?
Jeffords: A year ago, my wife and I had twin baby girls, Cagney and Lacey.
[Jeffords shows Holt a photo of his daughters]
Holt: [emotionless cop voice] They have adorable chubby cheeks.
- "The Tagger."Peralta: Has anyone ever told you you look exactly like a statue?
- In "The Slump," Holt tells Peralta a story about an unlucky detective named Smitty and gives him a lucky rabbit's foot. At the end of the episode, Holt tells Peralta he was just messing with him, in the same deadpan tone.
- And explored in the "M.E. Time"," where all the other cops relate their experiences with Holt relating what should be either incredibly good news (going on holiday with his husband) or incredibly bad news (a fire which damaged several precious heirlooms) in the same flat monotone, making it impossible to determine what his mood is at any given moment. It's also subverted in the same episode, as when the cops are telling their stories, Scully pitches in with one. We then cut to a flashback which involves Holt, clearly very pissed off, tearing Scully a new one:Holt: [screaming] This is the most incompetent, worthless report I have ever read in my life! [slams the report on his desk] Get your act together or so help me God, you won't live to see retirement!
[cut back to present]
Scully: It's like, "What's that guy thinking?"
- In "The Party," we meet Holt's husband Kevin, an equally sober and serious man who apparently considers Holt to be the funny one in the relationship. Furthering this belief are the guests at the party who proclaim Holt as incredibly hilarious.
- The followup episode, "Full Boyle," also shows him thinking of an opening joke for a crowd:Holt: "Do you know what the toughest part of being a black, gay police officer is? ... The discrimination." ... I believe that's what you call observational humor.
- He repeats it to a crowd of African-American gay and lesbian police officers later in the episode and they crack up. Meanwhile, Gina looks on with a Flat "What" and a perplexed expression similar to Peralta's.
- "Undercover" reveals that he was apparently just as serious and stuffy when he was a little boy:Holt: [on Jeffords impersonating a seven-year-old] Feel free to consult the script I prepared for you.
Jeffords: Okay, but it's a little stilted. "I am feeling trepidation at the prospect of a parentless existence"? No kid talks like that.
Holt: Those lines were lifted verbatim from my boyhood diary.
- In contrast to Peralta's jovial attitude. He's definitely got a sense of humor, but he's such a rock-hard professional that it never rises above the deadpan. A Running Gag is that, despite the fact that Holt never changes his deadpan, flat delivery style, people from outside the precinct tend to find him utterly hilarious, much to the confusion of the people he works with.
- Competition Freak: For all his professionalism, if Holt gets invested in something he will become this.Amy: You're just as competitive as we are!
Holt: Absurd. I'm more competitive.
- Consummate Professional: Very serious, and always on-task in the precinct.
- Cowboy Cop: It's implied that in his youth he was one of these. And he still sometimes slips into his renegade ways when his emotions are thoroughly riled.
- Cultured Badass: Is a tough, competent police officer who knows enough about classical music to have a personal preference in flautists note , wears monogrammed pajamas, uses the Abyssinian Civil War as a reference point in arguments and is married to a classics professor.
- Da Chief: Of the 99 precinct.
- Deadpan Snarker: Overlapping with The Comically Serious. Basically a straight-faced rock in a uniform, he's exceedingly deadpan and he knows the best way to deal with Peralta is through snarkiness. His husband Kevin, an equally stoic man, seems to view him as "the funny one" in the relationship.
- Defrosting Ice King: Gradually warming up to the precinct. He even did a group pop-and-lock with Peralta at the end of "Christmas," and "The Party" revealed that it wasn't his husband who invited them as they thought, but rather Holt insisted and even told his husband that he likes them.
- In the second season episode "Jake and Sofia", Holt sternly demands to know why no one is working. They reveal that they are waiting to see what has made perfectionist Santiago a whole minute late. In the first season he would have barked at them to act like police officers and get to work. However, this time he asks if he can play, too, and lets out an overjoyed "HOT DAMN!" when his guess (she was held up at the bank) turns out to be correct.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: In "The Bet," every single time Holt tries to apologize for something he tells Jeffords' wife, he gets Jeffords into more trouble.
- Drink Order: He is a discerning wine drinker and normally savors each glass while enjoying the bouquet.
- A Father to His Men: He very much is the father figure to the precinct, especially Peralta.
- First-Episode Spoiler: The fact that he's gay is treated as a surprise reveal in the pilot episode, but is naturally referred to frequently in later episodes.
- Food Pills: One of Holt's oddities is that a variation of this is his preferred type of food:Holt: If it were feasible, my diet would consist entirely of flavorless beige smoothies containing all the nutrients required by the human animal.
- The Gadfly: He loves messing with Peralta and Santiago.
- The Gambling Addict: In his back story he had a gambling problem, particularly with regards to horse-racing. In "Bad Beat", we see him fall Off the Wagon when he helps Jake to go undercover at a high-stakes poker game. Given a typically nerdy twist for him, however, when it turns out that he's not even that good of or invested a gambler, really — he's more obsessed with the math behind many of the games that typically involve gambling (such as card games) than the gamers themselves.
- Gentle Touch vs. Firm Hand: The "firm hand" to Terry's "gentle touch".
- Graceful Loser: Played With and Subverted. When Peralta outwits him in "Halloween", he seems almost impressed, and later concedes defeat (and the amount of paperwork he now has to do) with good humor. The next Halloween, however, it's revealed that Holt was absolutely furious about losing to Jake and had been planning his revenge for an entire year and was already working on beating Jake the next year as well. It is suggested that Holt was initially and would have continued to be a lot more graceful about the situation had Peralta not spent most of the evening on the first occasion immaturely gloating, however.
- Happily Married: Despite not talking about his home life very often, he and his husband Kevin are very much in love and devoted to one another.
- Hates Small Talk: Not as much as Rosa, but close.Rosa: We talked about emotions for twenty minutes.
Holt: Dear God.
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: When he goes into witness protection, he hides his homosexuality from his new Florida neighbors by constantly mentioning just how much he loves the "big, weighty breasts" of women.
- Heroes Love Dogs: Holt adores his pet Corgi, Cheddar.
- Hidden Depths:
- His husband and (non-colleague) friends think he has the coolest sense of humor.
- He's also shown to be an amazing ballroom dancer in "Charges and Specs".
- He and his husband attend a hula-hoop class, where Holt has mastered all the moves.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: At the end of Season 5, Holt's inability to stop his Snark-to-Snark Combat with Wuntch results in him getting demoted to a beat cop.
- Innocently Insensitive: Holt is not a cruel man by any stretch, and always tries to be polite to almost everyone. Unfortunately, he also has No Social Skills whatsoever. This often leads to him upsetting people, offending them, making them uncomfortable, or unintentionally making an unpleasant situation worse — and often not realizing he's done this until another character points it out. (And if he does notice, he'll often fail to grasp why he had this effect.)
- It Is Pronounced Tro Pay: For some reason, he pronounces Kaboodle as "Ka-boo-dale" and Cinnabon as "Cin-e-bone".
- Kicked Upstairs: During the season 2 finale, he's forcibly promoted back to Public Relations against his wishes, by Wuntch.
- The Knights Who Say "Squee!": A massive fan of John Weichselbraun. He describes himself as a Weichselbrauniac and got kicked out during a concert due to gasping too loud in the front row.
- Large Ham: He can get very dramatic from time to time... and yet still somehow manages to combine this with The Stoic.
- Mean Boss: He's mostly a Reasonable Authority Figure but he can touch on this from time to time, particularly with Peralta and Santiago. With Peralta it's more justified since Peralta tends to bring it on himself with his immaturity and flippant attitude to his job, but for all her sucking up Holt can be a bit nastier to Santiago than is perhaps necessary. For example, he spends most of "M.E. Time" taking his worrying over the precinct stats for his first month as commander out on her quite harshly, and in "The Apartment" Jeffords calls him out for only being interested in playing mind games with Santiago during her evaluation when she's one of his best detectives and is only trying to improve herself.
- Meaningful Name: "Holt" is an Old English word for "wood"note . Fitting, since he typically shows about as much emotion as wood.
- Mysterious Middle Initial: Peralta notices that Holt's pajamas are monogrammed with the initials R. J. H. and he keeps trying to guess what the J stands for.Holt: My middle name... is Jacob.
- N-Word Privileges: Implied when Peralta says he can't sing along to his favorite "very explicit" rap songs when Captain Holt is in the car with him.
- Nobody Over Fifty Is Gay: Averted; Andre Braugher, who plays Holt, was in his early fifties at the time the show premiered. While Holt's exact age has never been mentioned it's been established that Holt was a detective in the late 1970s, which would place him in his early-to-mid fifties at youngest.
- No Social Skills: His robotic, stoic nature frequently suggests that he barely seems to understand how humans work at times.
- Not So Above It All: Holt has an imposing demeanor, but he has as many foibles as the rest of the cast: for example, his temporary obsession with a Candy Crush-expy.
- He also claims to have gotten a tattoo at one point, but he refuses to tell anyone about it ever again.
- As much as he tells Peralta off for his behaviour, several times he engages in the same sort of thing - e.g. pranking Jake and making bets with him every Halloween.
- Not So Different:
- The flashbacks we see of 1970s!Holt imply that he was more similar to Peralta than contemporary surface appearances would suggest.Peralta: Wow, I think I really would have gotten along with young Ray Holt.
Holt: Yes, that's why I decided to change everything about my life.
- He can be just as childish, petty and vindictive when it comes to his feud with Wuntch as she is with him.
- The flashbacks we see of 1970s!Holt imply that he was more similar to Peralta than contemporary surface appearances would suggest.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business:
- Holt acting with any sort of overt emotion is so out of character that the entire precinct will stop all activity because no one knows how to react.
- Played for Laughs in "Thanksgiving": Holt reacts with typical weariness when Peralta eagerly suggests that they role-play as "Barley and Jimes", but when one of the suspects they're following gets embroiled in an out-of-control family argument he ends up drawing upon the backstory Peralta gave 'Jimes' to stop them fighting:
- He gets increasingly competitive and invested in the annual Halloween heists, to the point where even Jake is taken aback.
- Old Shame: In-Universe, the younger Raymond Holt was apparently a much different person — brash, cocky, an obsessive gambler, prone to taking unnecessary risks — and he is very much not proud of the person he used to be.
- Only Sane Employee:
- As Da Chief, wrangling his subordinates is actually his job on paper. Played with, in that the series gradually reveals that he's not without his own goofy eccentricities; he's just very stoic about them.
- This also happened when he was assistant manager at an arcade, since the rest of the employees apparently find it acceptable to come later than opening hours.
- Papa Wolf: He's quite protective of his precinct, even if the people threatening them are his direct superiors.
- Parental Substitute: Holt gradually becomes one for Peralta. In the opening for "The Apartment", Peralta accidentally calls Holt "dad", for which everyone mocks him. Made pretty clear in "Captain Peralta".
- As time goes on, it becomes more and more clear that Holt does see Jake as the son he never had. He would never admit it, but their relationship, especially when off the clock, turns almost familial.
- Passing the Torch: Passes leadership of the organization for gay and lesbian African-American police officers to a younger cop, symbolizing how far they've come as a group (Holt was the sole founding member).
- Perpetual Frowner: He rarely expresses any other emotion, and he has a hard face when he says he's happy.
- Pull the Thread:
- Holt has a tendency to do this with Santiago when she's in ass-kissing mode with him to reveal the holes in logic, false modesty or insincerity that she's tying herself in while doing so:Holt: The D.A wanted me to personally thank you for your work on the James Street drug bust.
Santiago: [modestly] It's why we do this, sir.
Holt: ... For praise?
Santiago: [cornered] Uhhh...
- When Holt's life is threatened in the episode "Christmas" and Peralta gets bodyguard duty instead of Santiago.Holt: Okay, the next time someone threatens to kill me, I'll come straight to you.
Santiago: Thank you sir. I can't wait.
Santiago: [cornered] Uhhh...
- Holt has a tendency to do this with Santiago when she's in ass-kissing mode with him to reveal the holes in logic, false modesty or insincerity that she's tying herself in while doing so:
- Rainbow Motif: As seen with his binders.◊ There's also a pride flag usually visible in his pen holder.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite his sternness and strictness, he's a very fair, reasonable commanding officer.
- Revolvers Are Just Better: He carries a .38 Special with a four-inch barrel rather than a 9mm semiautomatic like the rest of the squad. Shown Their Work/Truth in Television Justified Trope as Holt has been with the department prior to their 1994 switchover to 9mm semiautos and consequently is allowed to keep it.
- Right Behind Me: Holt appears behind Peralta several times in the pilot.
- Serious Business: Takes any competition extremely seriously. Best shown during a cold open where the others are making playful guesses as to why Amy is late. He guesses she was held up at the bank and deadpans, "This is fun." When Amy dodges the question, he angrily orders her to answer. She says there was a line at the bank. Holt gives an arm pump and shouts in victory.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: He's the exact opposite of his extremely lively and outgoing younger sister.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: He has an open rivalry with Deputy Chief Wuntch that goes back decades. She is one of the few people in the world who can get him to break his usual stoicism and openly show anger and frustration.
- Stealth Mentor: Holt acts this way towards Peralta and Santiago:
- His by-the-book strictness is gradually forcing Peralta to take his job seriously and become a better cop and better person. Lampshaded by Wuntch, who sneeringly refers to Peralta as Holt's "pet project".
- It's more subtle with Santiago, since he on the surface resolutely refuses to act anything like a mentor to her. But this is gradually having the effect of helping her develop confidence and belief in herself rather than a need to rely on someone else's advice and good opinion.
- Takes this role with Sgt. Jeffords in a couple of episodes. He pretends to need instruction with firearms, and brings Gina along so that his obsession with details and Gina's incompetence will force Terry into taking several shots himself; this is to get Terry on the road to reinstatement in the field, as hitting the target a set number of times is a prerequisite. When Terry is considering leaving the Nine Nine for a private security job, Holt's Mean Boss behavior by making him digitize his old case files seems likely to drive him away; in fact he's doing it because he knows reviewing his old cases will remind Terry of how important his job is and convince him to stay.
- The Stoic: Basically an impassive statue come to life.
- In the fourth episode of the first season several characters comment on how hard it is to read him, with two Cutaway Gags, one showing Santiago asking him if he had a rough weekend, to which he responds he went to Barbados with his husband and has never been happier, and another with Terry asking him if he had a fun weekend to which he responds his apartment went up in flames and he lost several photo albums, which has left him devastated. Holt's expression and demeanor are identical in both clips.
- Straight Gay: The revelation of his sexuality is a surprise moment at the end of the first episode. Although he's not in the closet and doesn't try to hide it, several detectives throughout the series don't realize he's gay (although several of these particular detectives aren't exactly exemplars of the profession, it should be noted) and he generally displays very few characteristics that would otherwise code him as such. It is also Played With here, in that Holt does have several features of stereotypical Camp Gay characters, they're just harder to notice because he is so reserved. He is fussy, neat, and cultured, for example, and is an amazing ballroom dancer. In the French dub, he has a slight lisp.
- Team Dad: He acts as the strict parental figure to the precinct, getting every member to reach their potential through discipline, and he is willing to put his team first in every decision he makes.
- The Tetris Effect: After becoming addicted to a Candy Crush Expy called Kwazy Cupcakes (the 'w' is backwards), it starts to comically interfere with his work, shown when he tells two men in a prison lineup to switch positions so that three people with the same-colored shirt are standing next to each other.Holt: [awed voice] Cupcake match...
- That Makes Me Feel Angry: Played for laughs — his extreme stoicism means that he often has to spell out exactly what he's feeling or thinking because otherwise his colleagues are completely unable to tell.Holt: Both of you have done exemplary work, which I appreciate.
Peralta: And I can tell that from the absolutely no indicators on your face.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Soup is the only food he is seen eating regularly and with any sort of variety. Otherwise, he views food merely as fuel and considers "Flavorless Nutrition Bricks" to be perfectly fine snacks.
Holt: Their components have a long shelf life, they're cost-effective, and they're so simple, a child could make them.
- Considers toasted bread to be his favorite breakfast meal, but whether it's out of preference or convenience is up in the air.
- He also likes peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches due to how pragmatic they are.
- Twofer Token Minority: Within the NYPD. He's black and gay, and as is frequently noted throughout the series he's had to face prejudice both because of his skin color and his sexuality. Part of the reason why he was promoted up the ranks was because the NYPD was eager to show that they were becoming more and more progressive. Unfortunately for Holt, though, that meant being assigned to Public Relations so that the public could see a black gay officer in a public role when all he really wanted was to be a cop and command his own precinct. He's also the founding member of an organization for African American gay and lesbian police officers, with about 50 members.
- Underestimating Badassery: For a given value of 'badass', anyway; in the early episodes particularly, he has a tendency to underestimate Peralta and think that his surface goofiness is all that there is to him. As an example, in the first "Halloween" heist he's clearly not expecting Jake to be resourceful enough to figure out a way to beat him, or cooperative enough to enlist the rest of the time to do so. This can still be a problem in later seasons; in "The Box", he offends Jake when he arranges for Jake to play the "dumb" cop in an interrogation so that he can play the "smart" cop, in a way which implies he doesn't think much of Jake's actual intelligence.
- Values Dissonance: In-Universe, he fondly remembers an old partner who was "homophobic but not racist, back then that was pretty good."
- Volleying Insults: Constantly with his two professional rivals, Olivia Crawford and Madeleine Wuntch.
- Will Not Tell a Lie: He refuses to lie, insisting that integrity is the right solution to any problem. His only exceptions are when children under the age of eight ask about Santa Claus — he rambles about the impossibility of proving a negative, which he feels is meaningless but keeps the kids happy — and when he apologises to his OB-GYN ex-boyfriend for throwing said ex-boyfriend's antique duck decoy into the trash, when in fact he didn't throw it into the trash, but off a bridge. He also lies to Scully and Hitchcock in one episode, but that might just be because it's Scully and Hitchcock.
- A more serious O.O.C. Is Serious Business type aversion happened during the events of The Wednesday Incident, where it turned out he'd been lying to his husband about going to his fencing classes because he was hiding the fact he'd been (lightly) stabbed during an attempted mugging. Kevin was very immediately upset by that revelation.
The supervisor of the Nine-Nine's uniformed officers. She is Peralta's partner and later wife, with whom he shares a vitriolic, competitive but nevertheless solid friendship with the occasional hints of a deeper attraction which later turn into love. Extremely ambitious and competitive, she is a driven over-achiever determined to prove herself a better detective than Peralta and the other detectives in the squad. She deeply admires Holt and frequently tries to ingratiate herself with him to persuade him to act as her mentor — with often disastrous results for herself in the process.
- Action Girl: Capable of dropping perps twice her size.
- Actually Pretty Funny: For all her exasperation with Peralta's goofy antics and teasing, there are several moments where she is visibly trying not to crack up at them.
- Adorkable: She's very dorky, but cute. It helps that she's truly beautiful, too. Her attempts to kiss up to Holt often leave her looking like a teacher's pet. She tends to get goofy when she's extremely pleased about something (such as when Holt complimented her Thanksgiving toast and when Peralta admitted he thought she was a great detective). Her Happy Dance is hilariously bad, but her good mood makes up for it. She eventually takes this Up to Eleven with her shame-cigarettes. She makes smoking adorable.
- Ambiguously Bi: In "Beach House", it's confirmed that she tends to get a bit lecherous after four drinks, but the only people we see her actually flirting with are Rosa and Gina.
- Ambition Is Evil: Averted. Amy is probably the most vocally ambitious member of the precinct, and makes no secret that she plans to be a captain herself one day. However, she's also an incredibly ethical person, to the point of being a goody two-shoes, and has not done anything underhanded or 'evil' in order to secure her ambitions. Although her ambitions do at times end up making her look like an Adorkable Yes-Man.
- Badass Adorable: Is a sweet, caring, somewhat insecure young woman, who is truly still the teacher's pet at heart. She is also an awesome detective, who can defeat much bigger perps in a fight.
- Badass Bookworm: She is highly intelligent and loves learning new things, whether through seminars or documentaries. She is still completely capable of kicking lots of ass.
- Badass Bureaucrat: Played with. She loves bureaucracy, and she's extremely badass, as proven by how much she handles herself in sieges.
- Badass in a Nice Suit:
Santiago: How does it look better on you?! [stomps off, distraught]
- Almost always dresses in smart pantsuits, to go with her formal serious outlook and personality.
- Parodied in "Undercover", when we see in flashback that she once came to work wearing exactly the same outfit as Boyle.
- Inverted when Gina intentionally wears one of Amy's suits in the precinct because by her logic it's too bland for anyone to notice her in it. It is and no one notices Gina during a crucial part of the episode.
- The B Grade: She's unsurprisingly extremely grade-conscious.Santiago: I haven't gotten an F since I failed recess in second grade! [mocking voice] "Teachers need a break too, Amy!"
- Berserk Button:
- She finds her boyfriend Teddy's obsession with pilsners really irritating.
- If she's on a diet, do not accidentally step on her almond.Santiago: Sorry?! You bumbling son of a bitch! You just ruined my life! I hope you get hit by a truck and a dog takes a dump on your FACE!
[Terry picks Santiago up in a fireman's lift and carries her away.]
Santiago: I HOPE YOU DROWN IN A TUB! I HOPE YOU HAVE ANEURYSM AFTER ANEURYSM AFTER ANEURYSM!
- Birds of a Feather: Non-romantic version. A large part of why she respects Holt so much is that he's just as strict on the rules as she is. Later episodes show he can be just as competitive as her as well.
- That being said, this fits her relationship with Jake too. They're both basically hyper-competent geeks with daddy issues and the more time they spend together, the more they realize they have in common.
- Born in the Wrong Century: She seems to be this taste-wise; her home is furnished in such a way that her work colleagues, upon arriving for her Thanksgiving dinner, mistakenly assumed that she lived with her grandmother, and outside of the smart and professional pant-suits she wears for work she tends to favor dresses that sometimes look on the old-fashioned side.
- Blind Without 'Em: Revealed to be such in "48 Hours" when Peralta tries on her glasses. (Her contact lenses had dried up).
- Brainy Brunette: Santiago is a book smart brunette who was almost valedictorian in high school.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: She's a bundle of neuroses most of the time, but she's still very good at her job.
- Calling the Old Man Out: After Holt insults Jake after already ruining Santiago and Jake's honeymoon, Santiago tears into Holt with a vengeance.
- Catchphrase: "C'mon, Amy" when she's disappointed with herself; "Oh, mama" when she's excited.
- Character Development: While she retains her admiration of Holt and deep desire for his approval, she gradually becomes less prone to humiliating herself in the name of gaining his favor, and is more willing to call him out when she thinks he's wrong.
- Characterization Marches On: Amy in the earlier episodes was played up as a far more competitive person, being presented as "One of the boys" due to having been the only woman in a house full of men. As the series progressed, she became more well known for being obsessively nerdy and bookish.
- Cigarette of Anxiety: Smokes "Shame Cigarettes", particularly when under stress.
- Competition Freak: Explained by Jeffords:Jeffords: She's got seven brothers, so she's always trying to prove she's tough.
- Crappy Holidays: She hates Halloween because she thinks it's an excuse for jerks to dress up in costume and cause trouble — so she's not pleased when forced to go undercover at a rave to bust some drug dealers.
- Dark and Troubled Past: In "He Said, She Said", she reveals that she transferred to the Nine-Nine because her old captain at the Six-Four sexually assaulted her.
- Didn't Think This Through: To get around Holt's no gift policy, she left her present to him on his desk, in an unmarked package, on a random day in December, and wrote "Open now" with her wrong hand.Holt: BOMB! There's a bomb!
- Dork Knight: She's extremely socially awkward and dorkily enthusiastic about police work, but is also a very capable fighter.
- Fair Cop: Santiago is an attractive, competent detective. In the pilot, Jake randomly compliments her good looks when they are closing on the perp after the stakeout.
- Freudian Excuse: She's the youngest child and only daughter of a large and competitive family, and her struggles to distinguish and define herself against her brothers have led her to overcompensate when working with others. To a lesser degree, it's implied she still holds a grudge over being passed over for high-school valedictorian.
- Geeky Turn-On: Often.
Jake: Keep it in your pants Santiago.Amy: Oh, that is exactly where this is going.
- She sounds legitimately turned on when Jake tells her that he needs her to get super high-strung and make a travel itinerary to get them from the middle of nowhere in Texas to the main Precinct in New York before ten in the morning next day.
- She gets very turned on when Jake dresses up as Melvin Dewey, inventor of the Dewey Decimal System.
- She gets turned on by Jake describing barrels.Jake: So this is a brine barrel made by Jesiah Woldriff, who learned the craft from his father Josiah Woldrif, who in turn learned—You know what? This was a terrible idea, I'm sorry.Amy: Don't you dare stop.Jake: Oh, okay. Jesiah's cousin was a cooper, not a hooper...Amy: Oh, mama.
- She's thrilled and turned on to learn that Jake started reading more.Jake: [on the phone] Oh, you're never gonna believe this. I've been reading.
Amy: Reading? Like, books by real authors?
Jake: I don't know, is Philip Roth a real author?
Amy: Oh, my goodness! I wish you had gone to prison years ago. I'm kidding. Obviously, I'm not more attracted to you now than before.
- She was even momentarily attracted to Boyle when he managed to do paperwork for twenty minutes with a hand cramp.
- She prints out a copy of Jake's perfect attendance record (from his high school) to use in the bedroom.
- Girly Girl with a Tomboy Streak: Sweet goody-two shoes Amy is very feminine, since she dresses in pink or blue blouses, decorates her apartment with doilies, is fond of sewing, and is the Girly Girl to Rosa's Tomboy. However, she is also extremely competitive, very ambitious, with dreams of being captain one day, and she really enjoys the action of chasing perps on the job. She is a police officer, which is not a particularly girly profession, so her having a tomboy streak isn't that unexpected.
- Go-Getter Girl: Always goes above and beyond what's asked of her.
- Green-Eyed Monster: She gets jealous of Peralta over how much he gets attention from Holt. Never mind that the attention Peralta usually gets from Holt is negative.
- Grew a Spine: Her desire to do everything the way her higher-ups would like is addressed In-Universe, serving as a major plot point in one episode where she's tasked to evaluate herself and her flaws. Eventually, she grows more openly assertive. This culminates in her giving an epic speech to Holt about how he ruined her honeymoon with Jake.
- Happily Married: She marries Jake in the season 5 finale. In season 6, they are very happy together.
- Happy Dance: She has a tendency to launch into incredibly goofy, dorky and uncoordinated happy dances whenever she's pleased about something.
- Hollywood Dateless: She wasn't actually shown having much trouble getting dates, going on a fair number (before she became the Official Couple with Peralta). Nonetheless, her being a straitlaced and pedantic goody two-shoes led to jokes from her colleagues that paint her as totally inexperienced in such departments.Peralta: Okay, so, you know the new medical examiner? I kinda had sex with her last night.Santiago: [scandalized] What?Peralta: Oh, sorry. I forgot who I was talking to. Sex is something that two adults do with their bodies when theyre attracted to each other.
- I Can't Dance: When going undercover as a ballroom dancer.Peralta: How did you manage to step on both my feet... at the same time?
- I Have Brothers: Seven, in fact. This is the given reason for Santiago's competitive streak and desire to prove her toughness.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: For all her tendency to get arrogant and competitive, she's a bundle of neuroses when it comes down to it.
- Lady in a Power Suit: She is usually seen in a pantsuit, which fits her formal and professional temperament, as well as her ambitious nature.
- Lethal Chef: She apparently considers baking soda to be an appropriate substitute for salt. When she prepares a large Thanksgiving feast none of the dishes are deemed edible by her guests. In the same episode, it's mentioned she made brownies which Gina admitted she thought they were erasers. Her cooking doesn't get better in Season 2, where her attempt at making her mother's Niçoise salad stinks up an entire subway car. Gina, after throwing the container out a window, says that she saw rats running away from it. In Season 3, she made baked ziti for Jake and Holt using a perp's recipe, though it soon turns out it was a code for a phone number meaning Amy actually used nine whole onions and seven cups of salt. It was of course inedible.
- Light Feminine Dark Feminine: The kind goody-two-shoes Light Feminine to Gina's narcissistic and mean-spirited Dark Feminine.
- Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places: What we've seen of her personal life so far suggests she's this.
- Love Revelation Epiphany: Implied. According to Teddy, she got "confused" about her feelings when Peralta brought up his, and later dumps Teddy before getting with Jake.
- Manchild: While not as bad as Peralta, she's still pretty immature and childish in many ways — specifically, where Peralta is basically the class clown who never grew up, Santiago acts like she's still running for high school valedictorian.Jake: God, you must have been the worst fourth-grader ever.
Amy: (smug) Joke's on you, I skipped fourth grade.
- Minor Flaw, Major Breakup: She finds several of her boyfriend Teddy's habits increasingly irritating over the first half of season two, but his obsession with Pilsners really seems to get up her nose to the point of being what triggers her break-up with him. Played with, however, in that Teddy seems to feel that unresolved feelings for Jake may have played more of a part on Amy's side of things, and it's implied that he's not that far off.
- Nerd Glasses: Normally she wears contacts, but as revealed in "48 Hours," her actual glasses are beyond goofy.
- Nerds Love Tough Schoolwork: Just as much as an adult as what is implied from her childhood. Among other things she gets positively gleeful at the notion of filling out paperwork, considers wading through incomprehensible bureaucracy to get a permit to be a "kick-ass assignment", and being quizzed is one of her turn-ons.
- Nice Girl: Amy is a very sweet and caring person through and through.
- Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!: In the pilot, when Terry is explaining her competitive streak to Holt, we cut to a shot of Santiago in the break room. Scully mentions the hot sauce she's pouring is hot. In response, she dumps half the bottle on her sandwich just to prove how tough she is. Naturally, it backfires on her since she is, predictably, not tough enough to cope with half a bottle of hot sauce.
- No Indoor Voice: A nervous tic of hers in stressful situations is to shout otherwise normal statements in a voice that too loud for both the situation and the context of what she's saying. For example, when reporting back to Charles and Rosa after she and Jake have kissed as part of an undercover role:Charles: So, how was the restaurant?
Amy: SUCH A NORMAL TIME.
- No Social Skills: She gets nervous, awkward and flustered easily, leading her to babble, stumble over her words, and do strange things out of sheer panic.
- Not So Different:
- A Running Gag of the show is that people apparently consider Santiago to be "the female Hitchcock". Since Santiago is a driven, competent, attractive and professional go-getter and Hitchcock decidedly isn't on any of those counts, she is bewildered by this.
- With Jake. Both are competitive and dedicated to their work, and both are rather childish and immature (albeit in different ways).
- Obsessed Are the Listmakers: Amy loves making lists and she has many, many binders from her various seminars and lectures. She has a laminated list of cruise itineraries for her romantic getaway with Jake and she's ready for "some nonstop totally scheduled fun". Her wedding binders and honeymoon binders are epic.Amy: All right, there are seven days until the wedding, so we are officially transitioning from the "Month of" binder to the "Week of" binder.
Jake: My goodness. They're getting bigger.
Amy: You should see the honeymoon binder.
Jake: Ooh. Is there a tab for sex stuff?
- Official Couple: She and Jake begin dating at the start of Season 3 and get married in the Season 5 finale.
- Oh, Crap!: In "The Bet", after producing a last-minute felony arrest that puts her ahead of Peralta:Santiago: Suck it, Peralta!
Peralta: [unconcerned] Oh no.
Santiago: [triumphant] That's right, "oh no"! [realizes; dawning horror] Oh no. You don't seem worried. Why don't you seem worried?!
- Outnumbered Sibling: She's the youngest of eight kids and the only girl.
- The Perfectionist: She describes herself as "a little OCD", by which she means "a little neat and ordered" (her behaviour shows no signs of the actual disorder OCD):Peralta: What? No you're not. [he reaches out and slightly adjusts Santiago's shirt collar; Santiago freezes up] Boop!
Santiago: ... I can leave it there.
Santiago: It doesn't bother me.
Peralta: I know.
[several agonised seconds later, Santiago readjusts her collar]
Peralta: [triumphant] There it is.
- Pink Means Feminine / True Blue Femininity: She's frequently seen wearing pink or blue, in contrast to Diaz, who usually wears black.
- Pregnant Badass: Played With: She dons a fake pregnant belly as part of her cover in "Maximum Security", an episode in which her main concern is proving to Jake and the rest of the squad that she is just as badass as Rosa. She not only convinces them, but the prisoner she's been sent in to spy on.
- This trope also goes for Amy's actress, Melissa Fumero, who of course was really heavily pregnant when the episode was filmed and still got to participate in the more action-type scenes for the first time in half a season.
- Prim and Proper Bun: Frequently wears her hair in this style, which perfectly suits her exceedingly meticulous and formal personality.Gina:' Did you get on the cover of Hair-Pulled Back magazine?
- Professional Butt-Kisser: Just to Holt. She desperately wants his approval.
- Rank Up: Promoted to Sergeant in Season 5.
- Real Women Never Wear Dresses: She grapples with this trope, especially after she becomes a sergeant. She knows that being a badass, competent police officer and liking girly wedding dresses aren't mutually exclusive, but she's all too aware that, as a woman in a male-dominated field, she has to work twice as hard to gain the respect of her colleagues — and that women who display traditionally feminine interests tend to get even more crap.
- The Resenter: As mentioned above, she tends to get jealous of the attention Peralta gets from Holt.
- Self-Induced Allergic Reaction: In attempt to suck up to him, she agrees to adopt Holt's puppies... but it's revealed she's terribly allergic to dogs when she tries to hold one.
- Shorttank: She doesn't exactly dress the part, but she does have a very wide tomboy streak, what with her overly competitive nature and fondness for the action her job brings her. She's also a terrible cook and is also made fun of by Gina for her unfeminine and unfashionable pantsuits. Despite this, she still has enough feminine traits to be the Girly Girl to Rosa's Tomboy (granted, that likely isn't saying much, since this is Rosa she's being compared to).
- Shutting Up Now: From "Charges and Specs":Santiago: ...My name is Amy Santiago and I'm done talking.
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: The more Jake behaves like a good guy, the more Santiago loves him. When she reads that he never skipped a day of school, she gets turned on. When she finds out he did a ton of community surface, even more so.
- Smoking Is Cool: Inverted. Amy is rather straight-laced, nerdy and a goody-goody...and is the only character with a cigarette habit, which she isn't proud of.
- Spicy Latina: Played with. Normally she's a buttoned-up, Adorkable and klutzy goody two-shoes with a competitive streak and plenty of neuroses and insecurities, but when she's drunk, she's flirtatious, outgoing, and energetic.Santiago: Can you magically make everybody kind, sober and fully dressed?
Peralta: "Kind, Sober and Fully Dressed." Good news, everyone! We found the name of Santiago´s sex tape!
- Teacher's Pet: She was apparently this as a little girl... or at least wanted to be this as a little girl, since it's implied that the teachers weren't overly fond of her either ("Teachers need a break too, Amy!"). She also gloats loudly over everyone when assigned the code-name "Hall Monitor" in "Halloween II".Holt: Santiago, when I greet the Deputy Chief I want you there by my side to make a good impression. No offense, but you are something of a teacher's pet.
Santiago: [proudly] None taken! People love their pets.
[Diaz gives her a withering stare]
- Amy could be seen as a deconstruction of this trope. Her obsession with getting the approval of authority figures began with her parents arranging pictures of their children in order of who makes them proudest which always left her as The Unfavorite. She was sexually harassed by her first captain. Finally, when she found herself in a position of authority, she found a subordinate who was exactly like her to be extremely annoying.
- Technician vs. Performer: The Technician to Peralta's Performer.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Since Season 6, around after Gina's departure, Amy has become more spiteful in a lot of the plots such as relishing her own brother's arrest, threatening divorce if Jake did not have a child with her, and even berating him when he did not take photos on a crime in the precinct while she blew off a dentist appointment. note
- Twofer Token Minority: Amy is female and Latina.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: With Diaz. She's the sweet, pastel blouse-wearing Girly Girl to Rosa's tough, black leather jacket-wearing Tomboy.
- Unrequited Love Switcheroo: Hinted at the end of "The Road Trip". She breaks up with Teddy, but Peralta remains with his girlfriend Sophia. Furthermore, Amy reluctantly confessed to possibly having feelings for Peralta prior to this.
- Unsportsmanlike Gloating: In keeping with her over-competitive streak, she has a tendency to strut and gloat whenever she gets an advantage over any of the others, Peralta especially. Not that Peralta's much better, mind.
- Uptight Loves Wild: Gender-flipped. Sweet goodie two-shoes Amy eventually falls for the cocky, immature, rule-bending, wisecracking Jake.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Peralta. For all her eye-rolling and snark at his behavior, she clearly respects him and enjoys his company more than she lets on.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: In regards to her family and to Holt.
- Will They or Won't They?: With Jake, who first realizes he's falling for her after calling off his plans for the worst date ever in order to finish a stakeout with her, and they have their first kiss while pretending to be an engaged couple while following a perp. Jake admits his feelings for her at the end of season 1...just before going undercover with the Mafia. Their ongoing UST throughout season 2 ultimately tanks Amy's relationship with Teddy, before the two of them finally get together in the uncertainty of what's going to happen to the Nine-Nine following Holt's departure back to Public Relations. They're officially a couple through season 3 and beyond.
- Yes-Man: She tries to be this to Holt, but Holt constantly finds ways to call her on her bullshit.
An extremely tough and bad-tempered detective in Peralta and Santiago's unit. Her permanent scowl, sour disposition and willingness to use violence successfully intimidate most of the perps she encounters in her day-to-day work — and most of her colleagues as well.
- Action Girl: She can easily take down people twice her size, owns an impressive arsenal of weapons, and has a Death Glare that can cow most perps (and most of her colleagues). There's a reason everyone's so intimidated by her.
- Afraid of Needles: As it turns out, she's scared of needles.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: From what little we can get about her personal life, aside from a handful of exceptions she appears to fall solidly in this trope. It's implied that she's had a fling with The Vulture and she spends much of "Adrian Pimento" lusting after the rather tortured and messed-up titular undercover detective. Deconstructed in "Charges and Specs", where she admits that the only reason she's been the one to end all her relationships is because most of the guys are messed-up losers, and that she enters these kinds of relationships precisely so that she'll be able to be the one to end it.
- Aloof Ally: The fact that she scares off most people and most of her colleagues know very few things about her (including Jake, who was in the Academy with her) is often played for laughs.
- Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: Tall, aloof, and intimidating to those around her. The only emotion she frequently displays aside from her aloof exterior is a Hair-Trigger Temper, although after Season 1, she begins to openly show signs of other emotions, such as nervousness and a genuinely big smile.
- An Axe to Grind: She owns an axe (along with multiple other weapons, including nunchucks and throwing stars), and finds the idea that someone wouldn't own an axe baffling.Holt: If someone broke into your apartment, and you weren't cops, wouldn't you be scared?
Diaz: Depends. How many guns do I still have hidden?
Diaz: Do I still have my knife? Nunchucks? Axe?
Holt: It was a hypothetical question.
Diaz: I know, but I want to play it out. Do I still have my throwing stars?
Santiago: This has taken a strange turn.
Diaz: Fine. I'd be scared. We're on it. (gets out of chair) What kind of woman doesn't have an axe?
- Badass Arm-Fold: She frequently stands with her arms crossed.
- Badass Bisexual: She's the resident tough guy on the squad, and she's bisexual.
- Beauty Mark: Under her right eye.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Adrian Pimento.
- Berserk Button: She's surly and aggressive a lot of the time anyway, but technology failing on her seems to really piss her off; her Establishing Character Moment in the opening credits is her slapping her computer, she once destroyed a defective printer with a battering ram, and after Holt switches her computer monitor with a malfunctioning one (for reasons of his own) it takes all of five seconds of frustrated prodding for her to start screaming and smashing it.
- The Big Gal: While Terry may have the strength of this archetype, Rosa has the typical personality (and is no slouch in the strength department, either). She's gruff, mean, and has a very short temper, and she's the quickest of the cast to resort to physical and violent solutions.
- Biker Babe: It's how she gets to work and she's often seen carrying a motorbike helmet. Her typical wardrobe of leather jackets and pants (or tight jeans) matches the archetype as well. We finally see her on her bike in "The Pontiac Bandit Returns" and again in "Ava". Yeaaahh.
- Bi the Way: Confirmed in "99," when she reveals to Boyle that she's dating a woman.
- Birthday Hater: She despises birthdays. Once, she punched Scully for wishing her a happy birthday.Rosa: Anyone over the age of six celebrating a birthday should go to hell.
- Black Sheep: It's implied she's this to her family; the one relation of hers we've briefly met (her sister) is an irrepressibly cheerful Happily Married mother with an enthusiasm for pink cardigans, parlour games and ice cream, and she has described her parents as "smiley morons and hug freaks". She begins to reconcile with them after she gets out of prison, as she comes to realize deep down just how much they mean to her.
- Blood Knight: She really loves fighting and is not afraid of getting physical. Her "happy place" involves her beating the crap out of a slimy defense attorney.
- Boots of Toughness: Rosa wears leather motorcycle boots that are as tough as she is.
- Breakup Bonfire: Her preferred method of dealing with breakups (or at least anything that makes her "feel"), as she demonstrates to Boyle in "Charges and Specs"?Rosa: Burn. Everything.
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: She is incredibly aggressive and is quick to resort to violence to solve her problems, but she does care a lot about her friends and values her friendships with them.Terry: I knew it! I knew you were a big softie.
Rosa: You tell anyone, I break your face.
- Brutal Honesty: Rosa is blunt when criticizing others and doesn't sugarcoat anything. This causes problems when in more formal settings, like a courtroom.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: For all her extreme anger issues, she still manages to be a very effective detective.
- Catchphrase: "What the hell?!" when someone does something foolish.
- Character Development: While her default mood is still The Stoic, in season 2 Diaz clearly smiles more often than in season 1. The most notable example of this is in "The Pontiac Bandit Returns", where she becomes so elated over busting the Giggle Pig drug ring that her reaction surprises even herself. Her friendships with the other members of the squad have also grown stronger over the course of the series, particularly with Boyle (once he got over his crush on her), Jake and Holt.
- Coming-Out Story: She comes out as bisexual in season 5 and slowly becomes more comfortable with her sexuality.
- Contralto of Danger: She has the deepest voice of all the female characters and she's definitely one of the toughest cops in the precinct.
- Control Freak: It's subtle, and well-hidden beneath her blunt, tough and cool exterior, but a closer look reveals that practically everything Rosa does is about rigidly maintaining control over every aspect of her life. Her job and personality is centered around giving her power and authority over others. She stubbornly refuses the help of others even when she needs it rather than relinquish any control over the situation. She keeps her personal life secret so that no one has information (and thus power) that they could potentially use over her. She keeps people at arm's length and her emotions tightly under control in order to maintain her relationships the way she wants them. She only dates certain guys (until Marcus) so that she is always the one to end things when the time comes, thus preventing a situation where someone else might have the power to control how the relationship progresses / ends. And so forth. The reason she's able to maintain an unflappable exterior is that she's usually in control; whenever something does go wrong, she tends to melt down quickly (she's almost reduced to tears when kids make fun of her instead of being intimidated by her, technology failing on her sends her into a violent tantrum, etc.).
- Cool Bike: Her preferred mode of transport.
- Cultured Badass: She's a classically-trained ballerina, attends a book club, and occasionally demonstrates an impressively wide knowledge base on topics like yoga, jewelry making, and interior design. She'll also break your arm in five seconds flat if you use any of those traits to make fun of her.
- Deadpan Snarker: Gives Holt a run for his money.
- Death Glare: Often used to cow perps, coworkers, or pretty much anyone into submission.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Diaz very slowly becomes less surly and standoffish and more willing to open up to the other main characters over the course of the show.
- Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Diaz tends to be a little rough when pushed or reacting to unwanted tickling (a one-handed wrist lock without even dropping her coffee). However, it's played for laughs in part because Diaz terrifies just about everyone and is clearly overreacting, and is just as violent when dealing with women who annoy her.
- Expansion Pack Past: Over the course of the series, we learn that before Rosa became a cop, she had gone to the American Ballet Academy for some time after attending Catholic school, been a competitive gymnast, attended medical school for three years, gone to business school, gotten a pilot's license, and lived in Osaka, Berlin, Macau, and Stockholm. She's also implied to be younger than Jake — who appears to have no backstory more complicated than "grew up, became a cop", and went to the police academy at the same time as her.
- Fair Cop: Diaz is fairly easy on the eyes, but her surly attitude distances her from this trope a bit more. She does attract her own share of attention however.
- Genius Bruiser: Rosa is the toughest of the squad and can kick plenty of ass. But she also went to medical school for three years as well as business school. And she managed to do all of that (as well as going to ballet academy and doing gymnastics competitively) before going to police academy, which she attended at the same time as Jake, who she is younger than.
- Good Is Not Nice: She's strictly on the good side when it comes to morality and she does care about bringing criminals to justice, but she's abrasive, violent, and extremely bad-tempered.
- Hairstyle Inertia: A flashback in "White Whale" taking place seven years earlier showed her with the exact same hairstyle back then.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Her Establishing Character Moment (which is also in the Title Sequence) has her snapping and smacking her computer.
- Happy Place: Rosa is instructed to go to her "happy place" when she's nervous at the witness stand. Her happy place turns out to be... rather violent. See Nightmare Fetishist for more details.
- Hates Being Touched: When Hitchcock tries to tickle her to get her to smile, she quickly gets him into a wrist lock without even dropping her coffee.
- Hates Small Talk:
Kevin: Rosa, tell us about your family?
- She's visibly disturbed by the prospect of having to make small talk during a dinner with Holt and his husband.
Rosa: I... have one.
- Said word-for-word in the fourth episode of the first season:Rosa: I hate small talk. Let's drink in silence.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Usually wears a leather jacket. Hell, for Thanksgiving she promises to wear her "formal leather jacket" ("it's the one without any blood on it").
- Hero with Bad Publicity: In the Season 4 finale, she is falsely convicted of robbing multiple banks, and everyone except the Nine-Nine believes it.
- Hidden Depths:
- She has a number of unexpected hobbies and interests that seem totally at odds with her personality. She went to ballet school, was a gymnastnote , is in a book club, enjoys the idea of film festivals, finds the movie Something's Gotta Give hilarious, does yoga to keep herself centered, uses bolt cutters to make jewelry, loves Gilmore Girls, and was genuinely pissed at how the show ended. Most surprising of all, she was a model student at her Catholic school before transferring to the dance academy.
- She has a soft spot for Boyle. In general, she comes across as surly and misanthropic, but she genuinely wants to connect with people on an emotional level and is fearful of the possibility she won't be able to maintain a long-term romantic relationship. After breaking up with Marcus, she cries, saying that if she couldn't maintain a relationship with a nice guy like him, she couldn't do so with anyone. She only seems stoic on the surface.
- She apparently presents a completely different persona to her neighbors. As "Emily Goldfinch", she's cheerful and chatty and has a tastefully decorated apartment. She also implies that "Rosa Diaz" might not be her real name (though it's ultimately negated when we meet her parents in Season 5 and they are very clearly referred to as Mr. and Mrs. Diaz).
- On a more serious note, it's clear that being in prison is not easy on her, in spite of how tough she is.
- Rosa also went to medical school for three years, went to business school, and has a pilot's license.
- Hypocritical Humor: She doesn't seem entirely aware of just how awful her temper is.Rosa: [to Holt and Jeffords] You think I have an anger problem? I don't. You are both dead to me.
- Ironic Name: You'd expect someone named after a flower to be dainty and feminine. Rosa is none of those things.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Rosa isn't the nicest person around, and tends to be rather blunt and insensitive with a generally aggressive and surly attitude. However, she's probably the nicest person in the precinct to Boyle. Despite him being an Abhorrent Admirer to her, she's still polite to him and turns him down in a mature and sensitive (for her) way. Likewise, as much as she likes to hide it, it's clear she does value the friendships she has with the other members of precinct, and she is unfailingly loyal to them.
- Knife Nut: She has an extensive knife and sword collection.Rosa: Are they going to be looking in our desks? Also, unrelated, someone left a bunch of swords in my desk.
- Knight In Sour Armor: She's quick to assume the worst in others and has a pretty low opinion of humanity in general. That doesn't change the fact that Rosa, at her core, is a fundamentally good person who does everything she can to uphold the law.
- The Lad-ette: She is aggressive, tactless, and sexually confident, loves violence and motorcycles, owns a ridiculous amount of weapons, and is pretty much One of the Guys. Her drink of choice tends to be whiskey or beer and she scoffed at the idea of drinking Bellinis at her almost-wedding, claiming that a drink that's peach juice and champagne is for six-year-olds note . Her perfect date: "Cheap dinner, watch basketball, bone down".
- Leaning on the Furniture: Rosa generally is seen leaning back in her chair with her feet propped on her desk, which fits her tough and cool demeanor.
- Like Father, Like Daughter: She's a lot like her father in both personality and general outlook, and differs significantly from her much more upbeat and perky mom.
- Limited Wardrobe: She's usually only seen wearing a black or grey shirt with a black leather jacket and pants. Charles lampshades this:Charles: What do you need extra closet space for? You only have one outfit!
- Long Hair Is Feminine: Inverted. Of the show's three principal female characters (Amy, Gina, and herself), Rosa has the longest hair, while also being by far the most tomboyish.
- Love at First Sight: Seems to happen to her in "Jake & Amy".
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Diaz is the Masculine Girl to both Terry's and Boyle's Feminine Boys. Rosa is a stoic, tough, and short-tempered Badass Biker Lad-ette who is Hell-Bent for Leather and loves gratuitous violence, while Terry is a motherly and nurturing Gentle Giant who is very in touch with his emotions and loves farmer's markets and painting, and Boyle is a sensitive Extreme Doormat foodie who played with dollhouses and read Nancy Drew books growing up and loves romantic comedies like 27 Dresses.
- Meaningful Name: She is both beautiful and quite thorny
- Muscles Are Meaningless: She can easily take on people over twice her size, even though she doesn't seem especially muscular.
- Nightmare Fetishist: Her idea of a "happy place"?
- No Social Skills: Her anger issues along with her stoicism and her lack of understanding of how emotions work make social situations very difficult for her.
- Not So Above It All: She usually acts too cool for dorky stuff that Amy is into, but in "Halloween IV," she declares that she's all-in for the heist this year, and is 100% ready and willing to go along with whatever nerdy thing Amy throws at her if it'll help them win. She even willingly makes references to The Babysitters Club, which delights Amy.
- Not So Stoic: On occasion. She bursts into tears after breaking up with Marcus, and she even joins in the dancing to celebrate after with Jake after he wins his bet with Amy.
- Odd Friendship: She is a grumpy and aggressive badass while Jake is a friendly, hyperactive goofball. Despite this, they've been close friends ever since their police academy days and have an unshakeable trust in each other.
- Only Sane Woman:
- Holt and Terry are this on a professional level, but Diaz is the one who takes care of the personal side. For all of her anger issues and being scary as hell, she is the one who regularly calls out her co-workers when they are being irrational (Boyle with still living in his ex's basement, Peralta's infatuation with Amy that goes nowhere, Santiago's need to win at everything) and she also gives them solid advice and helps to make their situations better.
- This said, her anger issues can easily put her on the other side of the trope as well:[on a co-worker who shaves at the desk he shares with Rosa]
Boyle: Why don't you just ask him to stop shaving at his desk?
Rosa: He denies even doing it; I don't know why. Next time I catch him shaving I'm gonna punch him so hard in the mouth he bites his own heart.
Boyle: ... Could that be why he denies doing it?
Rosa: [as if this is a revelation] Oh yeah, you could be right, yeah.
- Perpetual Frowner:
- She's nearly always seen scowling — so much so that when she does smile, it usually comes across as discomforting.Amy: Ugh, she never smiles. Is her mouth broken!?
- At the end of "The Pontiac Bandit Returns", Rosa is so happy at the Giggle Pig bust that she's been smiling nonstop.Rosa: [grinning ear to ear] How do people do this with their face muscles normally?
- She's nearly always seen scowling — so much so that when she does smile, it usually comes across as discomforting.
- Platonic Life-Partners: With Jake. They knew each other from the police academy and trust each other without any hesitation, but they have shown no romantic interest in each other. Rosa even calls Jake her closest friend in the world. They're so close that they can communicate via slight nods of the head... through writing.Amy: (confused) You want me to write [in a letter to Jake] that you nodded slightly?
Rosa: He'll know what it means.
- Properly Paranoid: Subverted. No one knows her exact address, she hides ownership of her apartment through a maze of off-shore corporations, and is prepared to move away at a moment's notice. She also maintains a number of false identities and hints that "Rosa Diaz" might not be her real name. None of this is done because she's worried about attacks or repercussions due to her profession, however. She just really doesn't like sharing personal details with other people.
- Psychotic Smirk: A lot of the times when she's smiling, it's because of violent things about to happen or are currently happening, such as when the team is about to blow something up.
- Renaissance Man: Of all people, she's implied to be this. Throwaway lines indicate that she went to medical, business, and dance school before joining the police academy, has a pilot's license, is an archer, does yoga, knows a lot about interior design, and makes her own jewelry.
- Rugged Scar: Has a small scar on her brow, which fits in perfectly with her personality.
- Stephanie Beatriz got this scar in real life, reportedly from tripping on a Lego piece when she was about 10 years old.
- Sarcastic Devotee: Trusts Jake implicitly, and is frequently willing to tell him information about her personal life that nobody else is privy to. That in no way stops her from snarking off at his quirks or calling him out when he screws up.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: From what little we've seen Rosa's sister is her polar opposite in every way, being an irrepressibly enthusiastic and cheerful Happily Married mother with a fondness for pink cardigans.
- Sour Supporter: She does in general trust Jake's decisions on the field, but does not hesitate to call him out if she thinks he's doing something stupid.Rosa: Hey, if Jake says the guy did it, that usually means the guy did it.
Jake: Thank you. Everyone listen to Rosa.
Rosa: No, I'm still furious at you.
Jake: Okay, no one listen to Rosa, she is clearly an accomplice to this crime.
- Spicy Latina: Downplayed. She's a hot-tempered, strong-willed, sexually confident Latina Biker Babe badass who's not afraid to get physical, but she's more stoic and deadpan than the typical example. Her short temper is also not a result of her being overly emotional or passionate, but rather because she's usually in a really bad mood. Additionally, she has neither the sultriness nor the accent usually associated with this trope.
- The Stoic: Rosa finds emotions repulsive and is typically aggressively unreadable. She's mentioned wanting to weld her tear ducts shut, and claims that talking about feelings is for losers. She's too badass for emotions, anyway.Rosa: It's very embarrassing having feelings.
- Tall, Dark, and Snarky: She's tall, has dark hair and dresses in dark clothing, and is quite the Deadpan Snarker.
- They're Called "Personal Issues" for a Reason: It's Not Hyperbole to say that Rosa would rather climb out a window than discuss feelings. She loathes telling people anything about herself. She'll mention personal details in the context of giving her opinion to other members of the precinct, but goes into crisis mode when faced with the prospect of a dinner party where she'll have to talk about her family extensively. She even once drank 5 shots to tell Jake her boyfriend's name even after admitting Jake is her closest friend.Rosa: (with visible effort) I have...two sisters. (pause) I have to leave this. (leaves the dinner table)
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: With Santiago. She's the violent and grumpy Tomboy to Santiago's goody-two-shoes Girly Girl. She's also the Tomboy to Gina's high-maintenance, dance-loving Girly Girl.
- Tomboyish Voice: Diaz speaks with a very deep, gruff voice most of the time, emphasizing her Lad-ette nature.
- Tomboy with a Girly Streak: Diaz may be an aggressive and surly take-no-crap Lad-ette, but she was a classical dancer and trained in ballet at the American Ballet Academy for some time, loves the series Gilmore Girls, performed in gymnastics, has a fondness for the romantic comedies of Nancy Meyers and does yoga in her spare time.
- Trouser Space: She carries an impossible amount of weaponry (and the occasional plaque) in her skintight jeans.
- Twofer Token Minority: Rosa is female, Latina, and bisexual, making her a minority threefer.
- The Unsmile: See Perpetual Frowner above.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Peralta and Santiago each. She can be pretty scathing towards them concerning their various quirks and foibles, but clearly likes them both a lot deep down.
- Vocal Evolution: Stephanie Beatriz played Rosa with a higher-pitched voice in early episodes before settling on a lower gruffer tone.
- When She Smiles: It's a very rare occurrence, but when she smiles, it's a thing of true beauty.
- Wrench Wench: Rosa fixes up old cars in her spare time and sells them to celebrities.
The supervisor of the Nine-Nine's detective squad. Although a physically strong and capable detective, his ability to do his job has been hampered by the recent birth of his twin daughters, which have left him neurotic about the dangers of his job and obsessed with the possibility of dying in the line of duty. He became a lieutenant in Season 6.
- Abusive Parents: It doesn't come up often, but "Terry Kitties" reveals his father was emotionally abusive. Fortunately, Terry hasn't continued the cycle with his own children — quite the opposite, in fact.
- Academic Athlete: Terry excelled in both college studies and college football, and has kept both his brain and his body in excellent shape.
- The Ace: During the NYPD v. FDNY football game, Fire Marshall Boone points out every play is give Jeffords the ball. He challenges Peralta to score a touchdown... which he does by grabbing the ball and having Jeffords pick him up and carry him into the end zone, taking down everyone in the way. He was also apparently this as a cop before the birth of his daughters and subsequent breakdowns — Holt mentions at one point that he was the precinct's champion marksman, and his backstory and nickname as the "Ebony Falcon" implies that he was a bit of a super-cop before getting married and having kids.
- Action Dad: He has twin daughters. As of season 3, he now has another baby daughter.
- Authority Equals Ass Kicking: Generally subverted as Terry is an archetypal Gentle Giant, but he wins the Cinco de Mayo heist and reveals that he became Lieutenant months ago.
- Badass Beard: Has a short Goatee.
- Bald, Black Leader Guy: As Sergeant, he's second-in-command to Holt and not above yelling to get his way. He's a bit more neurotic and sensitive than the typical example, however.
- Bald of Awesome: An Action Dad and brilliant police officer/detective without a single hair upon the top of his head.
- Berserk Button: Cats. Though it not that he actually hates the animals themselves, just his old co-workers keep sending him a cat once a year to mock him over a ridiculous claim he made in stress 20 years ago.
- Thanks to his former weight problems, calling him fat or even overestimating his current weight (a tight 240).
- Big Eater: He requires at least 10,000 calories a day to maintain muscle mass and, if unchecked, his eating habits can cause him to become morbidly obese.
- The Big Guy: He is, by far, the tallest and most muscular person in the Nine-Nine. He's so big, in fact, that a hospital ran out of anesthesia while trying to put him under for surgery. Played with in that he actually outranks the Five-Man Band's ostensible Leader and Lancer Peralta and Santiago, and Diaz is much more of a physical presence when it comes to dishing out violence.
- Big "WHY?!": Terry often lets these out when confronted with his coworkers' shenanigans.
- Black and Nerdy: As a child, he would dress up as a superhero and walk around his neighborhood trying to stand up for himself and the little guy no matter how badly bullies beat him up. He was inspired to become a cop when one scared away a gang of bullies that were ready to kick his ass. Also, he is a fan of fantasy novels and becomes a mess when he discovers that his favorite author is a bit of a jerk.
- Broken Pedestal: Learning his beloved childhood hero writer of the Skyfire series DC Parlov, who had inspired him to make something of himself, is a bit of a callous jerk who didn't even write the touching note Terry once got, upsets Terry a great deal.
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: He's built like a brick wall and, while violence isn't his first solution to problems, is still capable of great physical feats, but he's an incredibly soft-hearted man who loves everyone in his precinct like his own children.
- Catchphrase: "Terry loves [X]."
- Characterization Marches On: In the first season, his most noticeable personality trait was his fear of dying or getting injured in the line of duty, despite his previous badass-ery. However, he manages to overcome this over the course of the season, and is now back to being one of the most formidable people in the precinct.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: A intelligent and capable police officer, hampered only by his fear of dying on the job. He gets over this fear during season 1, so the "crouching moron" part no longer applies to him.
- Cultured Badass: To a lesser extent than Holt, but he's able to speak knowledgeably about French New Wave cinema, among other topics. He's also a brilliant artist and is a skilled painter.
- Doting Parent: He adores his daughters. Gina even states his twitter is mostly filled with photos of them.
- Dynamic Entry: Jeffords' return to the field is tackling a guy who already shot Boyle in the ass and had a gun trained on Peralta and Holt from offscreen.
- Emotional Bruiser: Terry is the biggest, toughest man in the main cast. He's also a huge softie, who wears his emotions on his sleeve.
- Even the Guys Want Him: Both Hitchcock and the Vulture have commented on Jefford's good looks. Subverted with Boyle, however, who unlike the rest of the precinct / known universe seems to find Jeffords quite physically unattractive, much to the bewilderment of Jeffords / everyone else.
- Fair Cop: He's a very attractive and muscular man who serves as the show's Mr. Fanservice, and he's an NYPD sergeant.
- Fan Boy: His childhood love of superheroes helped inspire him to join the force, and enjoys the Skyfire Cycle series of fantasy novels by DC Parlov.
- Formerly Fat: Used to be fat before he lost it and replaced it with a lot of muscle. Liable to gain serious weight if he discovers a new food that he can't resist, e.g. Boyle's cacao nibs in season 2. A flashback shows that he was a chubby kid who was mercilessly bullied by other kids.
- Genius Bruiser: Jeffords' is a giant wall of muscle, and he's awesome in a fight. However he's also highly intelligent and well read, graduating from Syracuse with Summa Cum Laude. He's also Bilingual (although he is the first to admit that his Japanese is very rusty), a talented painter, and knowledgeable in a variety of matters.
- Gentle Giant: Easily the tallest and most muscular cast member but also the friendliest and sanest. This was particularly the case in his original early-Season 1 characterisation, which contrasted his huge, powerfully-built physique with his Lovable Cowardice, but even since he got over the latter he's still remained a very sweet-natured, soft-hearted guy.
- Gentle Touch vs. Firm Hand: The "gentle touch" to Holt's "firm hand".
- Good Parents: Terry's an excellent father, and loves his daughters above all else. Several episodes show that the main reason he's afraid of getting hurt on the job is because he doesn't want to leave them without a dad. He's also happy to do "girly" things for them, like makeovers or putting together a dollhouse.
- Happily Married: Very happy with his wife Sharon and he adores his daughters.
- The Heart: He's the most sensitive and mature one of the group, acting as the Team Mom, and is good at settling disagreements and keeping the group together.
- Height Angst: Feels very insecure about his height when his brother in law visits.
- He's Back: Jeffords returns to the field when he learns Holt's life is in danger. After tackling the perp from offscreen, he even exclaims "Terry's back!"
- Hidden Depths: Fan of foreign cinema and farmer's markets, learned to speak Japanese, and is secretly a talented artist.
- Intimidation Demonstration: Often crushes an object in his hand in order to intimidate someone. This includes a Magic 8-Ball and his own cell phone.
- In Touch with His Feminine Side: He doesn't have to dance after every touchdown he scores. He chooses to dance. He's also very emotional, nurturing to his subordinates, priding himself on being a "mama hen" to them, a devoted father to his children, a gifted artist, and a huge softie. Additionally, one of the reasons he was looking forward to flying first-class in "99" was so that he could watch Bridget Jones' Baby and sip mimosas. He's basically a huge, muscle-bound teddy bear of a man.
- I Was Young and Needed the Money: Did some catalog modeling during his time in Japan.Terry: I was a starving student! Terry needed the yen!
- Lovable Coward: In season one, since he's had kids he's suddenly very afraid for his own well-being out of fear of leaving them fatherless. He more or less gets over the worst of it by the middle of the season, and by the end is back on active duty with the other detectives. Peralta notes that he's no longer the Ebony Falcon, who had no fear. He's now the Ebony Antelope, in Jake's words: "brave enough to drink from the watering hole, but wise enough to run from the lions."
- Lust Object: For Gina, she is very attracted to his physique.
- Manchild: He's normally one of the more mature and stable members of the precinct, but he becomes this in the first two episodes of Season Two. It's invoked on both occasions, however, since in the first episode he's actually been ordered to act as a seven-year-old by Holt as part of a drill (he still gets very in-character, however), and in the second episode he's regressed under the influence of not-quite-powerful-enough anaesthetics.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: He's the Feminine Boy to Diaz's Masculine Girl. Terry is a motherly and nurturing Gentle Giant who is very in touch with his emotions and loves farmer's markets and painting, while Rosa is a tough and short-tempered Badass Biker Lad-ette who puts up a stoic front, is Hell-Bent for Leather and loves gratuitous violence.
- Muscle Angst: He's concerned about the possibility of losing muscle mass. In an episode where his brother-in-law was visiting, it was revealed he has additional angst due to the guy being even bigger, leading to Terry working out obsessively (including doing chin-ups in his sleep).Terry: I can feel my body starting to digest itself.
- Mr. Fanservice: The series draws a lot of attention to Terry Crews' giant muscles. Gina openly lusts after him. He also has been shirtless several times, and his costumes of choice whenever he needs to dress up don't have any shirts.
- Nice Guy: He's basically a kind-hearted softie when all is said and done.
- No Poker Face: Flexes his pecs whenever he has a good hand.
- Number Two: As sergeant of the precinct, he's number two to the Captain, Holt.
- Obnoxious In-Laws: He makes up excuses to stay at the station rather than return home when his brother-in-law is visiting him (who teases him for being small—Terry may be big, but his brother-in-law stands at least a head taller).
- Only Sane Employee: Commanding officer of the precinct's detective squad, he usually manages the detectives at a more personal level than Holt. "Operation: Broken Feather" and "The Party" both show that he knows the detectives well enough that he can actually use their insane tendencies to make them more effective.
- Only Sane Man: He's steadily become this for the precinct since getting over his anxiety issues in Season One, frequently reacting to both the neurotic goofiness of his subordinates and Holt's off-the-planet robotic stoicism with bafflement and exasperation. That being said he's not without his own quirks, but by and large they tend to be context-specific and the result of incredible stress, irritation or some kind of external source (such as medication) rather than fundamental parts of his character.
- Pec Flex: He's been known to bust out on occasion, much to Gina's delight.
- Phrase Catcher: "Terry loves yogurt."
- Rank Up: He becomes a lieutenant in season 6.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Though not the highest authority in the office, he's the second-in-command and very fair to his subordinates.
- Red Baron: He was known as "the Ebony Falcon" before he got relegated to desk work.
- Scary Black Man: He zig-zags this trope — physically, he's quite muscular and imposing, and he does have a bit of a temper, but his temper is for a large part bluster and when you get to know him personality-wise he's clearly a bit of a softie. However, when he gets really riled up, he does get pretty damn intimidating. He also enjoys invoking this trope by playing the Scary Black Man in lineups.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: The shooting incident that got him sidelined before the start of the series. Also that time he had a spider on his head.
- Sheep in Sheep's Clothing: All around a very wholesome man, but when he's asked to be "Scary Terry"...Terry: Oh, I love being "Scary Terry", he says what "Regular Terry" is thinkin'...*flashback to a suspect line-up*"Scary Terry": THIS IS TAKING TOO LONG! I'M GONNA MISS THE FARMER'S MARKET!
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Not really, but he started acting like one after his kids were born, which is why he compulsively avoids going into the field.Peralta: Is he seriously assigning me to the records room? Why do we even have a records room? The computer's been invented, right? I didn't dream it?
Jeffords: You're lucky, man. I wish I could get assigned here full time. You could not be farther from the action.
- Shipper on Deck: He is very supportive of Jake and Amy's relationship, even dropping hints that Jake should propose (although he really shouldn't have couched his suggestion in a yogurt metaphor).
- Spiders Are Scary: Freaks out when Jake brings a tarantula to the office and all but runs for the elevator when the spider escapes from its cage. The last shot of the Cold Open is Terry shrieking in terror when he realizes the spider has crawled its way on top of his head.
- Team Dad: Mostly this is Holt's role, but he can sometimes slip into this, especially in 'The Party', when he has to wrangle his more childish co-workers. Terry sums up his own feelings about this trope in "The Vulture".
- Terry: I've been so worried about my own kids, I forgot about my stupid grown-up kids!
- Team Mom: While he has elements of Team Dad, he generally plays this role, being more nurturing to his subordinates. In "The Apartment" he even compares himself to a mother hen, with the precinct being his chicks.Jeffords: Jake, you know I love you like I love one of my daughters.
- Theme Twin Naming: Jeffords named his twin daughters Cagney & Lacey.
- Third-Person Person: Not an extreme example, but often refers to himself as "Terry" during exclamations.
- In flashbacks to his childhood he calls himself "Little Terry", apparently.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Terry looooves yogurt.
- He even gets super upset when the mango flavor of his favorite brand gets discontinued, to the point he gives a eulogy for it.
- Trigger Happy: Jeffords became so scared of getting killed on the job that he panicked and emptied his gun into a mannequin in a department store. At the start of the series, he is on desk duty because of this. In a subsequent episode, it turns out there was a second incident shortly afterward in which he emptied his gun into a piñata. (This, of course, gives Jake the opportunity to grab some candy.)
A bumbling, awkward and eager-to-please detective in the unit with an unrequited crush on Diaz. Although clumsy and prone to accidents, he is a hard worker and succeeds through his willingness to 'grind' through his cases. He is good friends with and extremely supportive of Peralta. A 'foodie', he takes anything to do with cuisine deadly seriously.
- Abhorrent Admirer: To Rosa for the first half of Season 1. Unlike most examples, she turns him down definitively but politely and isn't mean to him. Well, isn't very mean. She's still Rosa, after all.
- Accidental Innuendo: In-Universe, to the point of Running Gag. Boyle has very little idea that the things he says can have sexual connotations. For example, he calls his wedding invitations "STDs" for "Save the Date"s.
- Ambiguously Bi: He describes Peralta and Diaz to be his "fantasy threesome". He's also had a number of innuendos with Peralta over the course of the other episodes.
- Amusing Injuries: He gets shot in the butt.
- Bad Liar: On top of having easily recognizable tells - including suddenly speaking in a posh, refined manner - Boyle seems incapable of lying his way out when under the stress of a friend or colleague interrogating or accusing him.Gina: You tried both pies, you know mine's better, but you're too scared to tell Rosa because you're into her.Boyle: Wh, what? [through a nervous laugh] That is not true, okay? I-I-I don't- I don't- I don't even LIKE food!Gina: What?Boyle: Who's Rosa?! Y-you're the scared one! [storms out]
- Berserk Button: Other officers suspecting him of or themselves being incompetent at their jobs really seems to tick him off; he gets vocally annoyed with Jake for slacking off on the job as his secondary officer in "M.E. Time", Amy and Rosa's refusal to take him seriously over his suspicions of Marvin Miller's guilt in "The Wednesday Incident" really gets him worked up, and he loses his cool with Scully and Hitchcock's incompetence very quickly in "Sabotage". This is likely because Boyle, as Jeffords points out in the pilot, is not naturally gifted at his job and so works very hard in order to excel at it.
- Veganism is a deal-breaker for an uber-foodie like Boyle.
- Birds of a Feather:
- His attraction to Vivian, who's also a foodie and also has a tendency to move too fast in relationships.
- Same with Genevieve. They are both foodies that love dogs and have a tendency of sharing too much.
- Brutal Honesty: In "The Bet", he starts dropping "truth-bombs" on everyone thanks to a dose of particularly strong pain medication.
- Butt-Monkey: Often picked on by pretty much everyone but Scully and Hitchcock. Unlike the other two, however, Boyle is reasonably competent and most of the teasing he receives is fairly good-natured.
- Character Development: It's subtle, but he starts becoming a bit less of a doormat in season two, and is more likely to stand up for himself (albeit not incredibly successfully) than just passively accept his poor treatment. He also loses his crush on Rosa after coming across Vivian and hasn't looked back since.
- The Chew Toy: If anyone is going to get his face shoved in gelato, shot in the butt, or accidentally stomp on his own muffin while banging his head into a counter, it is Charles Boyle.
- Clingy Jealous Guy: Charles gets very jealous easily, especially over Jake, no matter who it is, and he's also very persistent.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: despite his cowardly demeanor when it comes to just about all his interpersonal skills, he's still a veteran cop who's more than capable of rising to the occasion in a dangerous situation.
- Creepy Good: Played for laughs. He's a genuinely kind-hearted, friendly, and gentle man who just wants to be loved and tries his hardest to help out in any situation. He's also incredibly socially inept, has no social skills or internal filter whatsoever, and seems determined to find the creepiest way possible to express his thoughts on any given subject.
- Determinator: How he solves cases. Not through intelligence or luck, just working very, very hard.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Although Boyle is a fairly nice guy, the trope is deconstructed with him; his poorly-concealed yearning for Diaz makes him the subject of scorn and disapproval from his workmates and Diaz herself bluntly points out that he's making things awkward and should move on to find someone else.
- He appears to have moved on to a fellow foodie who it turns out is just as dogged as he is.
- Lampshaded in "The Apartment" where, after having fun together playing a prank on another co-worker, Boyle apologizes to Diaz for his clingy and weird behavior towards her throughout the season.
- Double Standard: If a female character had an ex-husband who treated her the way Boyle's ex-wife treats him, it would never be played for laughs.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: A lot, especially when Jake can be fairly dismissive of him despite Boyle's Undying Loyalty for him.
- Everyone Has Standards: Despite his utter lack of self-confidence, even Boyle looks down on Scully and Hitchcock.
- Extreme Doormat: To everybody, though especially to Jake, his ex-wife (and her new fiancé), and Vivian. He willingly high-fives Jake over jokes at his own expense, lives in his ex-wife's new boyfriend's basement and is just grateful that the rent is low and he's allowed into the nicer areas of the house when they're away on expensive vacations, and was willing to quit his job and move to Canada just to avoid a confrontation that might upset his new fiancée.
- Interestingly, Rosa is probably the least guilty of anyone of taking advantage of this trait, since she makes a point of treating him with kindness and respect even while attempting to convince him that nothing will ever happen between them.
- He lampshades this in "Thanksgiving", acknowledging that he's a compulsive people pleaser and that "it's a serious problem".
- Flanderization: Initially he was depicted as dorky and slightly pathetic, but relatively normal compared to the wacky characters of the squad. By the season midpoint, he was the most consistently weird major character.
- Likewise, in the first season he's a sentimental and affectionate man whose behaviors sometimes veer towards the effeminate. By season two, his effeminacy becomes one of his defining traits, and nearly every conversation he has is laden with Accidental Innuendos.
- Fourth Date Marriage: With Vivian — they meet at Kevin's party and get it on from there. They're engaged in an exceedingly short amount of time. Ultimately subverted, however, since they ultimately break up after failing to negotiate a satisfactory resolution to Vivian's desire to move to Ottawa for her career versus Boyle's desire to remain in New York.
- Freudian Excuse: Implied; his panicked reaction when Peralta and Terry try to force him to choose between them suggests that he has extremely combative and dysfunctional parents who often force him to choose between them ("This is just like Christmas dinner at my parents' house — why do they have separate dining rooms?!") which may be the source of his eager-to-please nature, and his constant yearning for Diaz is implied to have something to do with his divorce.
- Good Parents: He's a good dad to his adopted son, Nikolaj. He goes on the warpath to find a toy he always wanted, and will talk his coworkers' ears off about him if he isn't cut off. He also tries to learn some Latvian, since it's Nikolaj's first language.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Due to his low self-esteem, he gets jealous very easily. When Peralta gets back from his undercover assignment in "Undercover", Boyle over-casually asks if he made "a mafia best friend" while he was working undercover. The closest Jake can think of is some guy called Derek who he did a couple of jobs with and barely knows. Boyle nevertheless spends the rest of the episode reacting like a jealous lover. Or when Peralta meets his old partner, Boyle is openly jealous.
- Hard Work Hardly Works: Downplayed for Boyle. He's not physically gifted, and he isn't as clever as Peralta or Santiago, but he closes cases by working harder than everyone else. Jeffords describes him as a "grinder."
- Hero-Worshipper: He genuinely seems to view Peralta as "the greatest man who ever lived."
- Heroes Love Dogs: He loves dogs and has had three dogs over the course of the series.
- Heroes Want Redheads: All the women he is paired with over the series, except Rosa, are redheads. His long-term partner, Genevieve, is also a redhead.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Jake, though a lot of the time it's incredibly one-sided.
- Hopeless Suitor: To Rosa, who has a boyfriend and consistently rebuffs his advances, although she does care about him. He eventually gets over his infatuation with her.
- In Touch with His Feminine Side: Vehemently insisted as a child that "Grandma bought [the dollhouse] for both" him and his sister, loves movies like 27 Dresses, is freely affectionate with his friends, and is a fan of Nancy Drew. He apparently also has professional-level calligraphy skills.
- Kavorka Man: Played with. His weird, gross intimate habits reliably Squick out his friends, but they serve him surprisingly well romantically. Combine with his surprising confidence, he's one of the most romantically successful members of the precinct.
- Last-Name Basis: Zig-zagged; more often than not his friends call him Charles but it's not uncommon for them to refer to him as Boyle. The only one who always calls him Boyle is Holt, his captain.
- Likes Older Women: In addition to his relationship with Vivian, he also mentions that he lost his virginity to a woman in her fifties and had sex with his college friend's grandmother.
- Manchild: He's incredibly insecure, immature and throws tantrums whenever someone calls him out or Jake shows any other man the slightest bit of attention.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The Feminine Boy to Diaz's Masculine Girl. Boyle is a sensitive Extreme Doormat foodie who played with dollhouses and read Nancy Drew books growing up and loves romantic comedies like 27 Dresses, while Rosa is a tough and short-tempered Badass Biker Lad-ette who is Hell-Bent for Leather and loves gratuitous violence.
- Nice Guy: Boyle is extremely likable and friendly; he even gets along well with his ex-wife's new boyfriend (who was also his landlord and, as is revealed in season 3, was his divorce attorney before he hooked up with his ex-wife).
- No Social Skills: He has a tendency to blurt out whatever thoughts go through his head regardless of how weird or creepy they come across.
- Obsessed with Food: He's a known foodie and he spends a lot of episodes talking about good food.
- Odd Friendship: Bizarrely, he's close friends with Hercules, his ex-wife's new husband. Despite the fact that he and his ex-wife are not Amicable Exes in any sense of the term, and Hercules as Charles' divorce lawyer. (Which led to Charles getting screwed over.) Even so, Charles asserts that Hercules is a genuinely nice guy, and even asks that Jake leave him out of it when Jake and Charles have to take on Eleanor.
- Papa Wolf: To his son, Nicolaj. In "Captain Latvia", he goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge of sorts to find a toy that his son has always wanted. He acts completely out-of-character. Shows how much his son's happiness means to him.
- Parental Neglect: A downplayed example; on the whole, he gets on very well with and shares lots in common with his father Lynn, but Lynn has made it quite clear on several occasions that Charles is lower down on his list of priorities than perhaps is appropriate for a father to position his son.
- Pinocchio Nose: He starts talking like a 19th-century British gentleman when he's lying or trying to conceal something.
- Platonic Life-Partners: With Rosa. It's especially clear in "Johnny and Dora" "Paranoia" and "The Overmining". Also with Jake, of course.
- The Pollyanna: Charles is always very upbeat. When he responds with anger or sadness, it's serious business indeed.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: At times, he screams at an unnaturally high pitch.
- Serious Business: Boyle is a huge foodie and takes anything to do with food incredibly seriously.
- Shipper on Deck: He's the first to point out that Peralta might have feelings for Santiago, as well as pushing Peralta to make his feelings known for her. If there was any lingering doubt that he ships Jake/Amy hard, his reaction when learning that they kissed as part of their undercover roles in "Johnny and Dora" can only be described as a squeegasm. He's also incredibly eager for them to start a family. In general, at times he seems more besotted with and devoted to Jake and Amy's relationship than Jake and Amy themselves. It's deconstructed as it is shown how annoying he can be for it, and Jake points out that him shipping them the first time they met made it take far longer for them to get together.
- Shot in the Ass: In "Christmas," when Taking the Bullet for Rosa.
- Supreme Chef: As befitting a foodie, he's a great cook. Usually his tastes are too weird for others to enjoy, even if he prepares it correctly, but if he makes something (relatively) normal, it turns out great — his "deconstructed" meatball sub in "Bad Beat," for instance, is incredible, according to Amy.
- Taking the Bullet: Boyle saves Rosa's life by diving in front of her and taking two in the butt. One HELL of a jump.
- The Team Normal: He doesnt have Terrys strength, Rosas athleticism, Jakes intuition or Amys intelligence, but hes still a great detective through sheer persistence.
- Too Much Information: Has a tendency to over-share with his colleagues whenever he's in a relationship that's going well.Boyle: Jake, I gotta tell ya; the engaged life is amazing. Especially sexually.
Peralta: [uncomfortable] Well, I don't wanna pry...
Boyle: [cheerfully] Oh, you're not prying; I want you to know this.
- Unlucky Everydude: As the Butt-Monkey who actually has to work hard to become a competent detective, he's this.
- Yes-Man: Especially with Rosa and Peralta. He admits in "Thanksgiving" that he's a compulsive people-pleaser and that "it's a serious problem."
The precinct's civilian administrative support. She's extremely sarcastic, possesses a tendency to troll and bully her co-workers, and at times appears to exist within her own very strange universe. Outside of the precinct, she's a member of an amateur dance group.
- Abhorrent Admirer: Although she's a very pretty woman, Gina fills this role to Terry sometimes, whose body she quite openly appreciates. Not that he hates her or anything — he's just a Happily Married man who doesn't always appreciate how... erm... vocal Gina can be about it.
- Action Survivor: Gina is nowhere near a capable fighter (such as it is, given that she's a civilian), but the fact that she manages to not die given how often she wanders into active crime situations (especially given how batshit crazy she is) says a lot about her.
- Alpha Bitch: She is basically a high school teen princess-bully who never quite grew out of it.
- Ambiguously Bi: Offers to teach Amy how to kiss very eagerly. Also, while arguing that Bad Boys is the best cop film ever made, she cites it having "A hot cup of Téa Leoni" as one of the reasons for its greatness. When Rosa comes out as bisexual in Season 5, Gina tells her that in another lifetime, the two of them would have made a "hot-ass couple."
- Attention Whore: Has always been this but taken to the very extreme once season 3 began (i.e. riding in on a horse to the precinct on her birthday or considering her name a "state of mind").
- Brilliant, but Lazy: Gina is quite clever and fairly often she has insights that surprise others. Because she's lazy, arrogant, and has never entirely grown out of her high school Alpha Bitch stage, she frequently decides that learning something new is beneath her, but when she's actually motivated to do or learn something, she often picks it up really well or succeeds beyond reasonable expectations.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: She may be a narcissistic cloudcuckoolander, but she is still surprisingly efficient at her job. See the entry for The Cuckoolander Was Right.
- The Bus Came Back: After having been absent since the Season 4 finale, she finally returns in "Game Night", the hundredth episode of the series.
- Car Fu: How she manages to defeat Figgis."Young Jeezy, take the wheel!!"
- Constantly seems divorced from reality.Holt: So, Gina, civilian administrators, like yourself, often have their ear to the ground. What do Santiago and Peralta have riding on this bet of theirs?
Gina: I will tell you, on six conditions. Number one: you let me use your office to practice m' dance moves. Second...
Holt: How 'bout this: you tell me, and I won't suspend you...without pay.
Gina: Oh, that sounds great. The deal is, if Amy gets more arrests, Jake has to give her his car. It's an old Mustang and is pretty sweet. If he gets more arrests, she has to go on a date with him. He guarantees it will end in sex. I bet on at least some over-the-clothes action, at the very least, some touching...
Holt: That's enough, Gina.
Gina: [undeterred] I could see him showing up in a silk robe...
Holt: That's enough, Gina. Thank you.
- Believes that psychiatrists are just people who weren't smart enough to become psychics.
- In the episode 'Sal's Pizza', Gina gets paired with Jeffords to find a new IT guy for the department. During her interviews, she's her typical strange self-grilling one applicant on what his favorite Jay-Z song is, deliberately startling another by tossing her water on him, and grosses out another by flossing right in front of her.
- As it turns out, Gina displays an in-universe psychological condition that had heretofore only been considered a theory and never seen in an actual human.Gina: [speaking to a group of psychologists eagerly taking notes] All men are at least 30% attracted to me.
[jump cut to a larger group of psychologists surrounding Gina]
Gina: My mother cried the day I was born because she knew she would never be better than me!
[jump cut to an even larger group of psychologists surrounding Gina]
Gina: At any given moment Im thinking about one thing: Richard Dreyfuss hunkered over eatin' dog food.
Psychologist: Complete overlap of ego and id. It's been theorized but I never thought I'd see it.
Gina: I'm exquisite!
- Constantly seems divorced from reality.
- Collector of the Strange: A whole rack of lycra bodysuits.
- Comedic Sociopath: Takes pictures while Boyle's coat is on fire.
- The Cuckoolander Was Right:
- In the end of 'Sal's Pizza', she has good reasons for all of her actions - she grilled the first applicant because some of the less savvy detectives (i.e. Scully and Hitchcock) would ask the same tech questions over and over again, she startled the second because he'd be working with Rosa, and grossed out the last applicant because a police precinct can see some pretty gross stuff. She then taps a much better choice for the job: the teenage hacker they'd just arrested, since he already hacked the system and thus knew its weak points, and he'd want a job to afford an apartment so he could get away from his mother, who was the one who sold him out.
- She also pegged Holt for being gay as soon as she saw him.
- Disappeared Dad: Like Jake, her parents are divorced and her mother raised her alone. Unlike Jake, Gina's father has never even been mentioned.
- Drives Like Crazy: A justified example in early Season 4: she doesn't know how to drive stick, so an injured Holt shifts gears and she does the rest. It ends up saving the day when the two hit Figgis's car, preventing his escape.
- Everyone Has Standards: Played for Laughs. When Gina says a certain title on a plaque is worse than segregation, Holt and Terry shake their heads and she apologizes.
- Former Teen Rebel: Apparently, she was one of the "at-risk" kids targeted by the Junior Police Program.
- The Gadfly: Constantly trolls her coworkers. An excellent (if subtle example) occurs when she accompanies Holt and Jeffords to the firing range. The reason she makes up for wanting to go is because the police precinct in her area is awful... and she lives in the 99's area.
- Hidden Depths:
- Gina turns out to be more mature than Jake when it comes to finances and surprisingly thrifty. She's already saved enough money to buy his grandmother's apartment for a real estate opportunity and offers to rent it to Jake so he doesn't have to move out when it goes co-op.
- In "Halloween II", Gina reveals that she's been going to night school in order to complete her bachelor's degree and ended up neglecting her beloved dance troupe in the process.
- It's All About Me: As far as Gina's concerned, the entire universe revolves around her and exists to benefit her personally.
- Jerkass: She can be a bit of a bully, particularly to Boyle and Santiago (and Scully and Hitchcock, but then everyone looks down on them). Her sense of humor tends to be rather snide and cutting in general.
- Jerkass Has a Point: She was right about Rosa not returning Boyle's feelings, he should have listened to her and stopped trying a lot sooner than he did.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Arguably more like "a small nugget of gold buried deep in a heart of iron", but she has been shown to have a slightly kinder side from time to time. By Season 5, the Heart of Gold shines through a lot more - she's still a Screwy Squirrel, but she's a lot less mean to the squad and her Pet the Dog moments with Jake, Charles, and Holt are much more common.
- Karma Houdini: She rarely seems to face any kind of serious or lasting comeuppance for her mean-spirited actions towards the other characters. Particularly noticeable since some of her bullying towards Amy and Charles alone would be grounds for dismissal, if not at least some disciplinary actions, in any halfway functional workplace.
- Know When to Fold 'Em:
- In the pilot, she makes a list of demands for Holt when he asks her a question. As soon as Holt makes an offer to not have her suspended without pay, she instantly accepts it and gives him the information.
- She takes great pleasure in uncovering and exposing Holt and Jeffords' efficiency scheme in "Operation: Broken Feather", but recognizes when her gloating has gone just a little too far:Holt: Okay, message received. Jeffords and I will get right to work.
Gina: Great! That will be all. Thank you.
Holt: [coldly] Get the hell out of my chair.
Gina: [instantly capitulating] Alright, I pushed it a little bit on that one. Ohh-kay. Bye. [scurries quickly out of Holt's office]
- Light Feminine Dark Feminine: The narcissistic and vain Dark Feminine to Santiago's Adorkable goody two shoes Light Feminine.
- The Load: When she's put into a dangerous spot, she more often than not becomes a liability. And she usually exacerbates the problem by being, well, herself.
- Meaningful Name: Most likely a coincidence, but her full first name, Regina, brings to mind another Alpha BitchRegina George of Mean Girls. In Season 4 she is even hit by a bus in a manner similar to Regina George.
- 'Regina' means 'queen', which is very appropriate given that she has an extraordinarily high opinion of herself.
- Morality Pet:
- So far, the only person we've seen who she genuinely seems to love and care about over herself is her mother.
- She does have a genuine soft spot for her childhood friend, Jake, and Terry. She also really does respect Holt... as much as Gina can respect someone, anyway.
- Narcissist: Jake might have an ego, but Gina truly believes that the world revolves around her and that everyone in her vicinity should make allowances to make her life easier.
- Jeffords explains to Holt he was able to distract her by putting a mirror on desk:Terry: She's like a cockatiel sir, fascinated by her own reflection.
- According to Rosa, a significant part of Gina's day involves checking herself in every reflective surface in the station. That includes Amy's lips.Rosa: What kind of urgent matter could Gina possibly attend to? She's already checked herself out in every reflective surface around the precinct.
Amy: Including my lip gloss! She says she looked better when I frowned!
- Jeffords explains to Holt he was able to distract her by putting a mirror on desk:
- No Social Skills: Gina can be very charming, but her fundamental narcissism means that she's usually utterly disinterested in the people she's interacting with to begin with.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: At least some of her apparent ditziness is a façade intended to leave people open to manipulation - for good or for ill. Apparently, she used to fake her report cards to give herself worse grades.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business:
- In "The Ebony Falcon," Gina's apartment gets broken into, and while for the most part, she remains her snarky self, Holt knows Gina's more scared than she lets on. Santiago and Diaz finally understand how bad it is when Gina stays at work late:Gina: Uh, you know me, I love working. Can't tear me away from my work. I just love requisitions, and corporate records, and just... you know, message from people for Holt.
- When asked to help prevent Wuntch from forcing Holt to leave the Nine-Nine, Gina shows how devoted she is to the task at hand by willingly shutting off her phone.
- In "The Ebony Falcon," Gina's apartment gets broken into, and while for the most part, she remains her snarky self, Holt knows Gina's more scared than she lets on. Santiago and Diaz finally understand how bad it is when Gina stays at work late:
- Pet the Dog: Every so often:
- When revealing her and Boyle's casual relationship in "The Mole", she admits to Boyle that despite her vocal disgust over their hook-ups she did have fun with him.
- She takes care of the melancholy "Six-Drink" Amy in "Beach House" when no one else is around.
- Despite her intense hatred and horror of the prospect of Charles's dad marrying her mother, she throws herself whole-heartedly into making sure they have a perfect wedding day. She also does grant consent to the marriage, since Lynn wouldn't propose without getting Gina's "okay" first, meaning she could've stopped the whole thing from happening. But she didn't. Why? Because she wants her mother to be happy.
- She's genuinely distraught at the idea of Holt leaving the Nine Nine. When he's forced out at the end of season two, Gina's response is to immediately and without any hesitation stand up and walk out after him, determined to stay with Holt no matter what. Given Gina's general disregard for authority, it says a lot about how much she respects him as a captain.
- After she accidentally destroys the 140-year-old "Boyle mother dough" that was given to her in the will of Great-Nana Boyle and gets banished from the circle of Boyle cousins, she's more than happy with it. But when she finds out how much Charles got hurt as he was banished as well, she made a new mother dough for the family, promises to take care of it, and even allows the cousins access to her apartment to get to the mother dough all so that Charles can get back in the family.
- In "The Tattler", she reveals that, in high school, she spread a false rumour about Jake so that the crowd of bad kids he'd been running with would oust him from their clique, thereby saving Jake's chances of eventually becoming a cop. Jake is touched by this.
- Phoneaholic Teenager: She's an adult version of this. She's perpetually on her phone, constantly checking social media or playing games. In one Cold Open, the rest of the precinct have a competition to see who can get her to look away from her phone. Charles' greeting, Jake's midmorning dance party, Amy's informing her of George W. Bush's death (to which Gina responds, "Who dat?"), and even Rosa's blowing an airhorn in her ear couldn't get her look up from her phone.Holt: You left your phone on your desk and I assumed you were dead!
Gina: Uh, I would clearly be buried with my phone.
- Proud Beauty: She's very fashion-conscious and worships her own beauty to the point that she can be distracted by her own reflection.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Chelsea Peretti's real-life pregnancy is written into the final episodes of Season 4 as her having a baby with Black Sheep Boyle Cousin Milton, and Gina is Written-In Absence as being on maternity leave at the start of Season 5.
- Really Gets Around: Her psychic predicted she would have a "sensuous encounter" with a guy named Mark. Gilligan Cut to a bar...Gina: [very drunk] Is anyone here named Mark?! [three guys raise their hands] [pointing] You're good.
- Screwy Squirrel: She generally enjoys messing with people for her own amusement. Gina's goal for her and Jake's twentieth high school reunion is to see how many lies she can get away with just to confuse their former classmates.Rosa: Gina's a rascal.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Generally, given her narcissism and over-inflated opinion of herself coupled with the fact that she is, basically, a secretary-slash-personal assistant. In a specific sense, however, she's convinced that she's inherently superior to the trained police officers around her at police work and that it's only through her generosity that she's not running the precinct. The one time we actually see her contribute to a case, however, (when an old classmate of hers is arrested and says he'll only talk to her) she completely messes it up, and it's only when Rosa bonds with the suspect by griping over how self-obsessed and narcissistic Gina is that the cops get anywhere.
- Sticky Fingers: Terry has to specifically ask Rosa to make sure Gina doesn't steal anything at Holt's birthday party. Unfortunately, Gina's already stolen a bagful of hats and scarves. It's later revealed she's also stolen a drawerful of silverware as well as a clock that doesn't belong to Holt or his husband.
- Strange-Syntax Speaker:
- In "Charges and Specs," Gina decides that the English language is no longer sufficient to "capture the depth and complexity of my thoughts" and so begins describing Emojis to express herself. This leads to nonsense sentences like "The fact you have him on trial is cat doing Home Alone face!" and "Our friendship is little boy holding little girl's hand!" (She uses emoji-speak again in "Boyle-Linetti Wedding.")
- This exchange from "Into The Woods":Gina: Hey, sport. You look a little D in the D. D for "down in dumps," respectively.
Amy: Probably easier to just not abbreviate if you have to explain it.
Gina: Agree to D.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The dance-loving, fashionable Girly Girl to Rosa's badass Hot Tempered Tomboy.
- Too Much Information: Gina to Holt about the probable outcome of Peralta and Santiago's date if he wins their bet. See Cloudcuckoolander, above, for sordid detail.
- Took a Level in Badass: A small one starting in Season 4. She's nowhere near an Action Girl (even calling her an Action Survivor is generous), but she also becomes a lot more useful when she's in danger.
- Took a Level in Kindness: After The Bus Came Back in Season 5, she occasionally starts to show her gentler side to the group while still being a Troll if she can get away with it.
- Undying Loyalty: She gradually grows into this for Holt and the squad, and has had it for Jake since they were kids (not that he was aware of it at the time).
- Womanchild: She acts like a high school Alpha Bitch most of the time to everyone else.
- Written-In Absence: She's on maternity leave in the first half of Season 5, to coincide with the birth of Chelsea Peretti and Jordan Peele's real-life son.
Two extremely incompetent veteran detectives in the unit, with a combined fifty years of experience. They make good coffee. After thirty years this is apparently the only reason they're still on the force.
Tropes that apply to both of them
- Ascended Extra: They were initially background characters with occasional lines to show that they were complete humps in contrast to the main characters. They became more and more prominent as the first season progressed and even get involved in the team's antics outside the office.
- Big Eater: Mostly Scully, but both of them have shown noticeable talent in chowing down on anything and everything edible. And quite a few things that aren't edible at all.
- Brilliant, but Lazy: Even more so than Peralta — at least when it comes to the lazy part. Both of them are actually competent detectives but only when something is important to them. They both actually work surprisingly hard when it comes to keeping their cushy jobs, as well as keeping them as cushy as possible.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Less so than Peralta, but they've shown themselves on more than one occasion to be capable detectives, they're just too lazy to get any police work done and would rather just see themselves through to retirement.
- Butt-Monkey: Both are described in the first episode by Jeffords as "basically worthless, but they make good coffee", and almost every episode they appear in sees them live down to that description in some way, shape or form.
- Clueless Detective: Both of them are seemingly completely worthless at their jobs.
- A Day in the Limelight: They get more and more sidestories as the series goes on, both individually and as a duo, but in "House Mouses", they're actually instrumental in a major drug bust... albeit after getting themselves (and Jake and Terry) caught in the first place. They finally get their own episode, titled "Hitchcock & Scully", in Season 6.
- Dirty Old Man: Hitchcock in spades — he seems to be under the mistaken impression that the women in the station (and some of the men) are interested in him physically. Less so Scully, although when he thinks he's having yet another heart attack, he does pull a Dying Declaration of Love on Gina:Scully: If I dont make it, tell Gina I love her...!
- The Ditz: Both of them seem barely aware of their surroundings or what's going on at the best of times.
- Divergent Character Evolution: At the start of the series, the only real way of telling them apart was to say that Scully's the fatter one with the flat-top and sweater-vest, while Hitchcock is bald. From their initial (lack of) characterization as "basically useless, but they make good coffee", and despite both being incompetent cops who've largely aged into obsolescence and are mostly kept around to do paperwork, there are a few noticeable differences between them which have been revealed over time:
Hitchcock: Smart. It was not tasteful.
- Between the two of them, Scully is at least marginally more competent (or less incompetent): he's a genuinely talented amateur opera singer, he speaks a little French, and if either one of the two is going to contribute something meaningful to the conversation, it's usually Scully. On the other hand, he's got a whole host of health problems (Gina having once said that over 70% of his body has died) and he apparently does very poorly under pressure, to the point where Hitchcock basically does his whole annual performance evaluation (a self-evaluation) for him.
- In general, the two are actually fairly capable detectives when they want to- the problem is, they don't want to put in a lot of work in anymore, and the rare few times they do it's because they either have to or because someone insulted their detective skills to their face.
- Hitchcock comes across as largely oblivious to his own faults: hes aware hes seen as uncool around the office, but has a surprising amount of (completely unwarranted) self-confidence about his abilities as a detective, desirability as a man, the amount of hair he has, etc. He's more likely than Scully to chime in and volunteer bad ideas or inappropriate, gross, often disturbing information about himself: admitting he has an STD with a hint of pride when the rest of the detectives are talking about Charles abbreviating Save The Date on his wedding invitations, being turned on by the thought of Rosa really needing to 'go' during the gang's trip to Florida, or being overjoyed at the death of his ex-wife:Hitchcock: No more alimony, baby!
- They also have different superpowers, as revealed in "House Mouses": when they're held captive by drug runners, Hitchcock scoots the office chair he's strapped to up a series of stairs in a matter of seconds (offscreen), and Scully manages to panic-sweat his way free of his duct tape bonds.
- In general, Scully is marginally smarter, but Hitchcock is more physical: Hitchcock is at least in good enough shape to give Charles a run for his money in a fight (admittedly not a high bar), and while he doesn't exactly do much better than Scully during the paintball games in "Tactical Village" or "Windbreaker City", Terry doesn't discount him entirely from the very beginning, either.
- Hitchcock is much more of a pervert than Scully, cheating on his (now ex) wife, having a relationship with someone so young, Holt thought she was his daughter, openly watching a lot of porn, and frequently making gross comments towards his female coworkers. Scully, meanwhile, has only shown interest in two women: his wife, who left him, and a woman he meets later at Cop Con, whom he treats very kindly. Case in point, when allowing questions about her bisexuality, Rosa willingly takes a question from Scully, who simply asks if she knows Anne Heche (which she does, surprisingly enough), but point-blank refuses to let Hitchcock even get a word out.
- Jointly, they fill the same basic role as Jerry from Parks and Recreation, created by many of the same staff. The key difference, however, is that while Jerry appears to have a very happy and successful life outside of the office to the point of being The Ace, all available evidence suggests that this is not the case for either Scully (whose wife divorced him without him even knowing why) or Hitchcock.
- They also lack Jerry's Nice Guy personality and remorseful demeanor. While Jerry feels bad about his mistakes and tries to make up for them, Scully and especially Hitchcock are Jerkasses who maintain more of an "it's your fault for thinking we could do something right" attitude.
- They also could very well be considered parodies of Polk and Mahon from The Wire, as both are older, overweight cops who do all they can to avoid actual work. If you squint, Scully looks a little like Polk and Hitchcock a little like Mahon.
- Extreme Omnivore: Both show a tendency to eat anything available, regardless of putrescence or being alive; Scully once enthusiastically continued eating rancid Chinese food just because it was free (although he subsequently came down with food poisoning, and Hitchcock once inexplicably swallowed his own goldfish. They also both enthusiastically consume dairy despite both being lactose intolerant.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: Both of them. Their staggering incompetence is enough that even Captain Holt hates them, and is openly relieved whenever some accident befalls them to get them out of the way. Scully gets the least of it due to being nicer. From "Captain Peralta":Jake: Also, we'd like to take Scully with us.
Captain Holt: Well, perfect. I do you a favor; you do me one too.
- Fair for Its Day: In-Universe. They're from the same era as Jimmy Brogan and all the cops Holt had to deal with throughout his career. Unlike their contemporaries, they don't seem to have any problem with the other members of the squad, most of whom are women, minorities, LGBTQ, or some combination thereof.
- Fat Idiot: Both of them can fall into this trap when they're being especially oblivious.
- Fat Slob: Always, as there are numerous jokes about them being extremely messy.
- Foil: They're this to Boyle. Hitchcock, Scully, and Boyle are all socially awkward weirdos who aren't among the smartest or most naturally talented of the squad. However, while Hitchcock and Scully are both unpleasant slackers, Boyle is both a very kind man, and genuinely intelligent underneath the weirdness. The biggest difference, however, is that Boyle responds to his lack of natural aptitude by working his ass off. No wonder being compared to Hitchcock and Scully is a Berserk Button for him.
- Formerly Fit: Before getting addicted to Wingsluts and developing an eating disorder, they were the "office studs" who frequently attended the gym. When Jake and Charles saw their photo from the '80s, they couldn't believe they were the same people.Jake: No offense, guys, what the hell happened to you?Scully: Are you body shaming us?Jake: No, I'm personality-shaming you. You were so alert and cool and job-doing.
- Functional Addict: It's heavily implied that they were this back when they used to do cocaine. They didn't become completely lazy and useless until after they quit drugs.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: Mostly because everyone else hates them.
- Hidden Depths: They display the occasional flash of insight to show that there is a reason why they became detectives. They're able to deduce that there is a hidden bathroom in the precinct just by observing Boyle, and Hitchcock, of all people, goes on a hot streak when Jake falls into a slump.
- Both apparently had major problems with cocaine in the mid-1980s.
- Scully appears to be quite a good opera singer (if prone to annoying his co-workers by bursting into song with little prompting).
- Scully turns out to be a very efficient puzzle solver. He manages to reassemble half a page in seconds when it took Amy and Terry hours just to get three words.
- Hitchcock's lack of real hidden depths is lampshaded in "The Party" when Scully is told to talk about opera, and Hitchcock is told to say absolutely nothing.
- Judging from his reactions to Scully's singing, it seems as if Hitchcock has an appreciation for Italian opera.
- Scully's demonstrated a pick-pocketing ability and he also speaks fairly fluent French (after having been left behind at the Louvre as a child and learning the language out of necessity because his parents didn't realize he was missing until they were back in the US).
- Hitchcock actually has the highest case closure rate in the precinct, with Terry pointing out that the man was a detective during the 80's when pre-Giuliani New York was basically The Purge come to life. Although this one is arguably a subversion, since the implication here is that New York was so bad back then that even a lazy, questionably competent dimwit like Hitchcock could barely leave the precinct without managing to arrest loads of people.
- Hitchcock is also surprisingly 'woke' about Terry being harassed by a police officer for being black in "Moo Moo".
- "Hitchcock & Scully" definitively reveals that they were good detectives back in the eighties, before gluttony took its toll on them.
- Hypocrite: Took down Gio Costa in The '80s for trafficking cocaine, during the time in their lives when they were themselves doing massive amounts of cocaine. Overlaps with Necessary Evil since it's implied doing cocaine was the only reason they ever got any work done.
- I Was Quite a Looker: The "Hitchcock & Scully" episode reveals that were quite buff and handsome in The '80s.
- Jerkasses: Truth be told, this is probably the main reason no one likes them, not their complete incompetence. They steal people's food, weasel their way out of work quite regularly, have an over-inflated sense of self-importance, aren't above bullying other squad members if they happen to have something over them, and it's shown that they could be decent detectives if they actually bothered to try, and they know it. Fortunately, the rest of the squad has no problem knocking them down a couple pegs on a daily basis.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: They both occasionally show that they have some redeeming qualities and aren't complete jerks.
- Of the two, Scully is more likely to show a softer side. Best illustrated when the team declares their loyalty and support of Holt: Scully does so immediately alongside the rest of the 99, while Hitchcock has to be shamed into it.
- In "Hitchcock & Scully", they are revealed to have been secretly protecting an NYPD informant for decades, after their captain refused to put her into witness protection; later, they instinctively jump in front of her to keep her from being shot by her murderous husband.
- Last-Name Basis: As part of being The Friend Nobody Likes. To the point where Rosa (admittedly half-delirious on cold medicine at the time) doesn't even recognize Hitchcock's first name (it's Michael) when she answers his phone for him. All the other main characters are on a First-Name Basis, barring the occasional shouted last name from bosses Terry and Holt, the latter of whom, as captain, is on more of a Full-Name Basis.
- When the detectives are picking names out of a hat, to chose who gets the new car, Hitchcock angrily accuses Terry of filling the hat with fake names, because he doesn't recognise the name "Norm", Scully's first name.
- Lazy Bum: Both of them. They happily stay in the office as they hate to move around.
- The Load: They contribute nearly nothing. Lampshaded during a training simulation in "Tactical Village".Terry: Scully, I want you to do nothing. Just stand next to me and say, "Yes Sarge."
Scully: Okay, Sarge.
Terry: C'mon, man.
- Mistaken for Gay: Some of Holt and Kevin's friends mistake them for a gay couple.
- No Social Skills: Hitchcock and Scully just seem to live in their own strange, not-very-bright little world.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: To a degree, at least; every so often it's suggested that they could actually be competent detectives if they wanted to be, but they've just decided to just sit back and lounge around the squad room doing paperwork and running down the clock until retirement. In "Sabotage", for example, after Boyle loses his patience with their laziness they end up solving the crime before him. The fact that they both seem to consider displaying the bare minimum of competence required to do their jobs as evidence that they're super-cops, however, suggests that the stupidity isn't entirely an act:Scully: If we're away from our desks for too long they'll update our computers and we'll lose Minesweeper. So please don't tell anyone about the amazing work we did today.
Charles: I never said 'amazing'. You just kinda did your jobs.
Hitchcock: There you go. [winks]
Charles: No. Really. I mean you also broke a window!
Scully: Now you get it.
- Obsessed with Food: They are always eating. Though unlike Boyle, they eat junk and fast food.Rosa: He's been our rep for twelve years and he still pronounces 'union' as 'onion'.
- Offscreen Teleportation: In the season 6 episode "The Bimbo" they reveal that they can apparently do this when food is involved, as they were both able to attend two simultaneous lunches that were miles apart.
- Police are Useless: The straightest examples on the entire show. Neither of them contributes very much and are pretty much kept around for their coffee. Peralta even said that Hitchcock is still a Detective Grade 3note despite the length of his service.
- Promoted to Opening Titles:
- Starting from the second season, Dirk Blocker and Joel McKinnon Miller have "Starring" credits appearing in the first act after the title sequence.
- Beginning with the sixth season, Dirk Blocker and Joel McKinnon Miller join the rest of the cast in the opening credit sequence.
- Really Fond of Sleeping: It appears that their only skills and interests are eating, sitting and sleeping. They have a special fondness for a rather old couch in the break room and when the precinct gets a new one, they immediately try to make it as shabby (and as comfortable) as the old one. They have a secret nap room (soundproof for maximum privacy). Scully can also fall asleep at will while sitting by his desk.
- Retcon: They were initially portrayed as being complete humps who've been that way since the 1970s. Season 6 retcons this to say that they were handsome and athletic supercops until 1986, when a chance encounter with a bucket of chicken wings turned them into complete gluttons. Hints were dropped throughout the entire series that they are capable of being good detectives when motivated and were much better at their jobs in The '70s and The '80s (Hitchcock even possessed the precinct arrest record).
- Retired Badass: Not technically retired, but flashbacks show that they were total badasses in The '80s. Those days are long gone.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: When their old captain refused to put their informant in witness protection, they stole a duffle bag full of money from evidence to help her disappear.
- This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: When Holt's pie is stolen, he turns to them for help (after deducing they couldn't have stolen it because the theft was well thought out).
- When Rosa wanted to find out if Pimento was cheating on her, Hitchcock had all the surveillance equipment she needed. It seems that Hitchcock knows everything about covert surveillance and untraceable communication. Holt has ordered the squad to never ask how.
- Those Two Guys: They're practically inseparable, to the point where they show up to their self-evaluations together, and Hitchcock once called himself Scully by accident. Heck, the very fact that on this page they not only share a folder, but tropes that apply to both of them far outnumber the ones that are exclusive to one or the other.
- Ultimate Job Security: By all rights, they probably should have been fired quite some time ago.
- The Watson: One or both can usually be counted on to not know what's going on, allowing someone else to fill them in.
Tropes that apply to Scully
- Adorkable: Although a bit of a jerk at times, Scully is in generally a sweet, awkward man, which earns him the affection of his Distaff Counterpart, Cindy in Cop Con.
- Affectionate Nickname: He calls Jake "Jakey".
- Companion Cube:
- Scully's reaction when the 9-9s old vending machine is being carted away is to act like he's losing the love of his life, complete with Hitchcock telling him he needs to be strong for her.Jake: Couldn't you take Scully instead?Scully: Yes! Take me to the land of vending machines.
- His reaction when the precinct's new vending machine bursts into flames after Jake has the bright idea of christening it with a bottle of champagne:
- Scully's reaction when the 9-9s old vending machine is being carted away is to act like he's losing the love of his life, complete with Hitchcock telling him he needs to be strong for her.
- Expansion Pack Past: A Running Gag is that Scully has many interesting stories about his life, like becoming fluent in French after being left behind in Quebec, and his father being a POW - but characters always cut him off and tell him that nobody cares.
- Hidden Depths: Secretly a kind-hearted opera singer.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: Since his wife left him, he was worried he was going to die alone, and just wanted to find someone that would love him for him. Thanks to Gina and Amy, he was able to get a kiss from Cindy, who is awkward like him.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Downplayed. Scully will every so often show that despite being a lazy, selfish social misfit, he's really quite soft-hearted. He gets far more Pet the Dog moments than Hitchcock does and seems more amiable as a rule, which is why he is treated better than Hitchcock, who is flat out ignored. He's even gone against the entire Nine-Nine and called them out in disgust over their single-minded desire to win a Christmas caroling competition over the MTA, pointing out that Christmas carols are meant to spread joy and not used to settle petty rivalries.
- Manchild: Or, as Jake once described him, "some strange giant baby." He's shy and weirdly innocent for a New York cop, and unlike Hitchcock, his obliviousness seems more like naivete rather than pure ego.
- Nausea Fuel: In-universe, Scully has a lot of problems with his body and openly and spontaneously informs others about them, much to their disgust.Scully: [shows Jake the sole of his foot, which looks swollen and has an orange discoloration]
Jake: I don't see anything.
Scully: That's because it's all wart.
Jake: [spits out his sandwich, gagging]
- Scully's feet smell so bad even Hitchcock gets involved in destroying Scully's shoes... using the precinct's bomb disposal equipment.
- Permanent Elected Official: In "Jake and Sophia", it turns out that Scully is the precinct's union representative mainly because no one else wants the job, and he only takes it because the annual meetings provide a party sub. True to form, he's hopeless at the job.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: In Cop-Con, Gina and Amy help Scully talk to Cindy, a woman he likes, and he gets a kiss from her by the end of the episode, and is later said to be dating her.
Tropes that apply to Hitchcock
- Casanova Wannabe: As a Dirty Old Man, Scully bringing up a time he asked out a breastfeeding mother.
- Catchphrase: "No doy!" on the rare occasion that someone praises his detective skills.
- Characterization Marches On: In the earlier episodes, he lacked his perverted tendencies, being unable to even recognize a penis.
- Dirty Old Man: He lusts after women a fraction of his age, uses any excuse to go into the women's bathroom, and hits on every woman in sight no matter how inappropriate the situation.
- Drives Like Crazy: When Hitchcock drives, it's harrowing enough to make Rosa scream in terror... along with Hitchcock himself.Hitchcock: I have nothing to live for, and I drive like it.
- Embarrassing Tattoo: Subverted; he doesn't think so. It's a tattoo of himself on his left bicep...with a gun in his mouth. He insists he's blowing smoke off the barrel — it's cool!Terry: The barrel is in your mouth! That was a suicide, man!
- Fan Disservice: Hitchcock taking his shirt off at the slightest excuse.
- Prematurely Bald: He apparently went bald at fifteen. Retconned in Season 6 when we see his younger, 30-something self and he still had a full head of hair.
- Small Name, Big Ego: While Scully seems to have a more realistic understanding of his place on the pecking order (and appropriately low self-confidence), Hitchcock seems convinced that he's a lot brighter and cooler than he is, and appears to view himself as Peralta's best friend-in-waiting.
- Token Evil Teammate: To the Nine-Nine. He's much more of a jerk, pervert, and politically incorrect.
- Toxic Friend Influence: Implied, as Scully is noticeably a jerk when around Hitchcock, compared to a Jerk with a Heart of Gold when alone.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: One of the running gags of the show is that Hitchcock goes looking for reasons to take off his shirt.