Amy is at her wit's end while preparing to take the NYPD sergeant's exam. Jake decides to help her by having her take a practice exam in the precinct's briefing room while surrounded by cops with annoying habits (to better simulate test conditions). However, Amy suddenly walks out of the precinct without saying a word to anyone and Jake and Rosa have to hurry and find her since the actual exam is scheduled to take place in just a few hours.
Meanwhile, Holt and Terry decide to try and improve the Nine-Nine's "soft room" for children by putting together a model train set. Unfortunately, the two men immediately clash as Holt strives for stringent realism while Terry tries to create a whimsical scene in the name of fun.
Also, Great Nana Boyle recently passed away and left Gina the Boyle family "mother dough", a generations-old sourdough starter, in her will. Things become complicated when Gina accidentally destroys the prized Boyle family heirloom and Cousin Tina decides to contest the will and ownership of the mother dough.
This episode provides examples of:
- Adorkable: Amy scores 102% on her practice test because she spotted a spelling error and decided to give herself extra credit. She later finishes the real exam in record time and proudly makes sure everyone else in the room was glaring at her as she walked out.
- Affectionate Parody: In-universe; Jake makes a point of telling Rosa that his impression of Amy comes from a place of affection.
- Bait-and-Switch: After Gina demands $10,000 for the mother dough, Boyle storms up to her to give her a piece of his mind:Boyle: Gina! I just want to say I am disgusted by you. You somehow luck your way into a family heirloom and have the gall to ask me to give you $10,000 for it?! That's an absurd amount of money! Took me all morning to get it together. [Slams a huge wad of money on her desk]
Gina: Oh. I thought you were telling me off.
Boyle: And what would that get me? Pride? You can't bake bread with pride!
- Book Dumb: Jake is not a good man to have on a trivia quiz team. Among the answers he gives are that Paul Revere announced "Winter is Coming", the man who devised the Theory of Relativity was Jesse Eisenberg, and that the Serengeti is a type of pasta.Jake: I'm not dumb! I just can't handle the trivia pressure.
- Brief Accent Imitation: Rosa does a quick but scarily accurate impression of Amy (by having Melissa Fumero dub over Stephanie Beatriz).
- In a cutaway, we see Amy studying in the dark using her shoulder-mounted flashlight invention first seen in "Into the Woods".
- Jake finally tracks down Amy on the rooftop where they conducted a stakeout during "The Bet". Jake notes that their brief flirtation that night was what caused him to fall in love with Amy.
- The Aruba vacation that Gina managed to persuade the Boyle Council of Cousins to go on in "Skyfire Cycle" apparently turned out to be even more of a Pyrrhic Victory for her than it was in the episode itself, since all eighteen Boyles have sleep apnea. And were sleeping in the same room as her with their machines going full-blast.
- Holt's passive-aggressive method of secretly disposing of the hated Mexican sombrero restaurant on Terry's side of the model train display is not entirely dissimilar to his passive-aggressive secret disposal of the hated wooden duck decoy that belonged to his ex-boyfriend Frederick in "Ava" ("Oops.").
- Character Development: Gina finally accepts that she is part of the Boyle Clan by starting a new mother dough that the family can share. She even acknowledges that Charles is her brother.
- Dirty Old Man: When looking for Amy after she flees the precinct, Hitchcock makes a point of checking the ladies' room. Twice.Rosa: I've never seen him move with such purpose. What a wretched man.
- Gender-Blender Name: Cousin Tina is actually a he. His name is short for... Christina.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: Boyle, on being confronted with Amy having stress-braided her hair into a very... unique style:Amy: What?
Boyle: Uhhhhhh... nothing. I'm gonna go over to there now. [Points and flees]
- Love Makes You Dumb: Discussed:Jake: Ames, I don't want you to take this the wrong way, but you gotta calm the F-train down! You're gonna ace this test.
Amy: You think that because you love me, and love has made you dumb.
Jake: I disagree; if anything, love has made me smarter. Remember last week, when I boiled that egg?
Amy: That was big. I was really proud of you.
- Messy Hair: Amy braids her hair when she's stressed. Next time Jake sees her, her hair is a mess from undoing them.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Amy destroying the microwave for not cooking her oatmeal fast enough is this.
- Percussive Maintenance: Overlaps with Percussive Therapy. The precinct kitchen microwave is not cooking Amy's oatmeal to a speed that she deems appropriate. Her response is to grab the microwave, throw it to the ground, whack it with her retractable baton, and then start stomping it.
- Rail Enthusiast: Both Terry and Holt share a love of model trains. However, Holt is obsessed with accuracy and realism, while Terry just wants something whimsical to amuse the children. When a kid is brought in to choose which of their two sets he prefers, he says trains are lame and asks for video games. The conflict between strict realism and whimsy is Truth in Television and it is constantly, and often fiercely, debated between model train enthusiasts.
- Serious Business: Amy's best friend Kylie still holds a grudge towards Jake over messing up their trivia team results when they let him join in one time. Although in her defence, he appears to have bombed out disastrously.
- Skeleton Key Card: When he and Amy are locked out on the roof, Jake tries to jimmy open the door with a hotel key card he forgot to return. It doesn't work.
- Super Window Jump: When he and Amy are locked out on the roof, Jake tries to "Die Hard" back into the building by swinging from a fire hose through the window. Unfortunately, he didn't count on the metal bars outside.
- Tall Poppy Syndrome: Amy confesses that she hesitated to take the sergeant's exam because she's worried about leaving Jake behind professionally. Jake scoffs at that because it's obvious that Amy is destined for great things and he wants her to do well.