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S02.E08: USPIS

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While attempting to catch a drug dealer, Jake and Charles reluctantly join forces with the nerdy lead investigator at the U.S. Postal Service, Jack Danger. Meanwhile, the rest of the team helps Amy quit smoking

 

 

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Holy shit! Amy smokes?!?

 

 

 

(This sounds like a job for Capt Holt's disappointed face.)

 

 Yes - her shame cigarettes referenced in The Apartment.

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Hopefully "the rest of the team" just means Rosa, Terry and Holt. Because Gina has consistently disliked Amy, and any attempt for her to be at all helpful would be frankly unbelievable.

 

Would she try and get Amy to quit because she thought it would make Amy miserable? Probably. But I don't want to see that. I do want to see her have a storyline with the other three though, so that should be great.

 

Meanwhile, I'd really like another Jake/Rosa episode sometime soon.

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Man, Scully & Hitchcock are so lame that they can pull off a Fake Birthday scam and everyone buys it. And then Scully drinks thumbtacks, that was just the perfect capper.

 

Jackie Donger was totally a guy who would go by that and not Jack Danger.

 

"Imagine a letter had unprotected sex with a phone." I loved Boyle tonight. I also loved his description of old stamp glue tasting like "a horse lollipop."

 

I don't think I need to stress that the flashbacks are awesome. Fat Terry? Holt at the pony races? Gold.

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Our show is back in top form. That was great. So many good lines "The capital of Ecuador is Quito", "music is a crutch", "vinegar dip", all in the delivery.  I laughed out loud so much tonight.  I had no idea Amy smoked but the team trying to help her quit was great.

 

Hitchcock and Sully showed their devious side once again. Loved it.

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This episode was awesome. Ed Helms was a great addition. I hope they can find a way to bring him back. I loved Boyle high-fiving the drug dealer. And everything that y'all have already said. So many good lines in this one.

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Got to watch it live this time, and sure enough, it's the first time we get to see Fat Terry!  Awesome!  I really hope we get more Fat Terry flashbacks in the future.  Closely matched by Old School Holt at the pony races.  Some of these gags just slay me, and that was the case for this one.

 

After last week's disappointment, I thought this was back to the good stuff.  Ed Helms pretty much is made play a character like "Jackie Danger", and was a perfect foil for Jake.  I also liked seeing more of the Jake/Rosa relationship, which is enjoyable.  I actually liked his "screw up" this time, because he was right in a lot of ways (Danger really was screwing up the case), but he just went about it the wrong way, and had to fix it; especially since Rosa really needed the win.  But, I"m glad it worked out!  Boyle was in great form tonight as well.  Really, no complaints here.

 

B-story was almost just as awesome.  Loved how Cold Turkey Amy made her snappish with everyone; even Holt.  Not quite as scary as the Hungry Amy from "Fancy Brugdom" last season, but I'm starting to think she's right behind Rosa as the person on the squad that I would not ever want to cross.  Loved the rest of the squad trying to help; got worried when Terry and Holt first failed, because I thought for sure we were going down the "Gina magically saves the day in her own way" again, but I'm glad that failed too, and it just ended with Holt telling Amy she needs to accept that it won't be perfect.

 

Plus, Amy in a tank-top.  I still continue to wonder how someone has hot and hilarious as Melissa Fumero has only just started getting noticed.  Again, gold star to the casting director!

 

The cold opening was fun and different.  I do like that Scully and Hitchcock have an edge to them.  It one of the reasons I'm more fine with the rest of squad mocking them, unlike the way Jerry is treated on Parks and Recs.

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That was really good.  I'm not surprised though, since I think Ed Helms is a genius.  I loved Peralta's chemistry or non-chemistry with him.  Peralta's reactions to him were so great.  And Boyle is one of the best characters on television.  

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Loved the A-Plot in this one, a lot of good rapport between all three actors (Helms, Samberg and Lo Truglio). Boyle is starting to come around as a character for me, but his best interactions are certainly with Jake. I hope this isn't the end of GigglePig though. I liked watching Rosa run the show.

 

The B plot was just painful save for Gina's meditation techniques. The notion of having someone as borderline psychopath as Gina work to calm you into release from addiction is splendid. But everyone else just played out as though this episode was from the first season, very one-dimensional. There were some laughs, but this show has raised the bar for how we view these characters, and their characterization in this one felt lazy.

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Rosa taking her assignment as task force leader so seriously, Jake figuring out what the zip codes meant, and the entire final sequence were nice reminders that the characters in B99 are really good at their jobs. Even Scully and Hitchcocks have CIs--and more brains than we realize, judging from the cold open. The B99 might act like idiots but they aren't idiots, if that makes sense.

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That was fun, though I need to rewatch because I was a little inebriated last night.

 

One of the best moments was when Holt says, "Music… is a crutch." Andre's delivery is hilarious. I also cracked up at his running shorts and the way he was running.

 

Ed Helms was great. Love when he tried to run after the suspect but was yanked back by his key chain.

 

I also really like that Boyle, though strange and quirky, is a good cop.

Edited by peeayebee
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I liked that this (despite what Sepinwall says in his dismissive writeup) is a different version of "Jake disregards protocol and does things his own way" than we would have seen in Season 1. Because he really is being dedicated to closing the case and giving Rosa a win (and therefore bypassing the impediment of Jack Danger). But he hasn't thought through the consequences of alienating the USPIS. And when he does understand that, he also understands how far he has to go in order to make amends, and does so without cracking. 

 

It's the same lesson as in Amy's B-story: the road to self-improvement is not a straight line. There will always be more to work on.

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 (despite what Sepinwall says in his dismissive writeup)

 

Geez, what is up with AS lately?  Seems like he's so overwhelmed by his Sunday viewing responsibilities that he can't relax and enjoy a good laugh any more.  :-(

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I agree with Traveller519 that this episode seemed weaker than the others from this season. Amy sneaking smokes while she was supposed to be meditating or in the port-a-john seemed very "Three's Company" level humor. But i did enjoy hearing Holt talk to Kevin about the belt. He seemed just a little more relaxed and warmer, speaking to the most important person in his life.

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I absolutely love the way Boyle absolutely loves Jake.

 

His reaction to Jake naming the keys was adorable...."most amazing person on the planet" or something.  He really thinks Jake is the best.

 

Also enjoyed visually the shots of Amy and Terry screaming underwater.    Nice.

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Amy sneaking smokes while she was supposed to be meditating or in the port-a-john seemed very "Three's Company" level humor. 

You and I remember Three's Company very differently. While neither particularly subtle nor unpredictable, those bits would have been standout moments of sophisticated humor on that show. And abashed Amy is adorable.

 

For a show that glosses over the many problems with the police in this country, going to town on the Post Office's imperfections rubbed me the wrong way a little. And making Danger an impediment at key points in the investigation (grabbing Jake's leg, really?) made it too easy to make Jake look sympathetic.  

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(despite what Sepinwall says in his dismissive writeup)

I kind of agree with Sepinwall about Ed Helms, though. He's essentially playing the same character from The Office, The Hangover and basically everything I've ever seen him in. And while I'm sure a postal federal agent IS going to be fairly under-qualified to deal with a drug ring in their mailboxes, I would think they'd at least be competent enough to realize this.

The leg-pulling was RIDICULOUS, who does that past the age of five? After that incident, I would have expected Jake or Rosa to go over that guy's head to his superior because he was clearly an idiot. It was apparent from the introductory scene. I mean, who has a cool-looking name like Danger and opts to go with the original pronunciation? What a tool.

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Good episode.

 

Jack Danger was as dull and dry and annoying as you could hope for him to be. Though I think that Boyle's dislike of him must have stemmed from Jake's, because he seems like a guy that Boyle would like, under most circumstances. But we know how much Boyle loves Jake, and he's quite impressionable. But Danger was such a weirdo, and I quite liked his delusions about his own importance and the importance of USPIS.

 

I like Rosa's new position of authority, and how she seems so natural at it. And I always enjoy the Jake/Rosa friendship, and wish we got a little more of them hanging out together. But this was another chance to see what's so great about Jake, despite his childish antics. He mans up and does the right thing, and he does it because he wants to, rather than because he has to. He did it because he wanted to make it up to Rosa.

 

Loved crotchety, grouchy Amy. She's almost as adorable as other versions of Amy. And I loved that the rest of the squad were happy to help her, and actually proactive in coming up with ways to get her to quit smoking. But her being short tempered was amazing:

 

"You know how I finally stopped eating?"

"You got too big to fit through the kitchen door?"

 

And I loved her terrible lies about teaching a pigeon to do the cancan and being in the shower inside a porta-loo. Not to mention that glorious, mortified wave and "hi!" when she wanted to start fresh. She's such a dork. The grammar geeks confronting that dangling preposition was brilliant. Holt is the man. "I made an error, and I'm not going to correct it."

 

I really liked the underlying theme of her trying too hard to quit because she tries too hard at everything. It's so great that most of the characters on this show have their own journeys, independent of what's going on with Jake. And I certainly don't object to seeing Amy in a tight tank top. Melissa Fumero is, I guess, an objectively attractive woman. 

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This episode was ok. Jack Danger was too annoying for me. When he grabbed Jakes leg I wanted Jake to kick him in the face so bad. I liked the Amy smoking plot. It was fun to see Terry, Holt and Amy doing things together. My favorite moment was Holt watching the ponies. His deadpan reaction to losing and the way he was cheering on his horse made me laugh so damn hard. It was also nice to see Rosa in action. I loved her reaction to Jakes apology before the raid. 

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I am a little tired of seeing Jake sell out Rosa and then apologize. Also, we hear that Rosa is in charge, but we mostly see Jake all episode and not her. I'd like to see Rosa deal with Danger. Or anything, really, more than just have lip service to her importance. Screen time trumps title, in my book.

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Just caught up with the show, damn is this good!

 

Another really good episode, though I just don't find Ed Helms funny at all. At least he worked well enough as a foil for Peralta and Boyle and the rest of the A plot was pretty great (especially Boyle's line about the fax machine, that was just glorious). I like it when they have actual serious police work to do (not that I mind episodes like the Jimmy Jabs Games, quite the opposite, but balancing those out with epsiodes like this one is important) and this was great. Really loved that Boyle did slam down that door like the competent cop he is, on most shows he would've just bounced back and hurt his shoulder or some other tired cliché. Making the joke about a high-ten with the perp afterwards was perfect and a well earned laugh. Please keep being this fresh and surprising, show!

 

Also loved the Santiago-trying-too-hard-to-quit-smoking plot. Especially that first line of her ("AGAIN? Are you kidding me, man?!") and how everyone's utterly stunned. "What just happened??", indeed. Also I don't think I'll ever get that image with her in that tank top out of my head ever again (and why would I?).

 

I am a little tired of seeing Jake sell out Rosa and then apologize. Also, we hear that Rosa is in charge, but we mostly see Jake all episode and not her. I'd like to see Rosa deal with Danger. Or anything, really, more than just have lip service to her importance. Screen time trumps title, in my book.

 

I guess it's because talking with Danger and following the leads is more like foot work and not a thing the leader of the task force is necessarily supposed to do (though she did choose to check out the silent disco herself). So it makes perfect sense that she would just delegate those tasks to Peralta and Boyle if she has other things to do.

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Another great episode. I really thought Donger was (and could still be) the mole inside the Ooopus running the drug ring, with grabbing Jake and stonewalling getting the names, and then making a stink to Rosa and having the Oopus take over the investigation (again, stonewalling). I was surprised that he wasn't evil; just incomptant.

 

I side with Jake on getting the names by any means necessary, but this show reminds up subtly that there are rules and procedures and there are consequences. Never heavy-handed, but they are there.

 

Nice shoutback to Amy's smoking problem, and nice for Holt to get Amy to realize that she doesn't have to be a perfectionist. I've been waiting for her to hit this growth in character. It will make her a better person and (in the future) a better captain to accept failure once in a while, and to deal with it.

 

I see others have chimed in on Amy in a tank top. Our DVR rewind moment was watching her get up from her desk and walk away in her grey slacks. :) "Dat ass!"

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I really enjoyed a lot about this episode, including the ridiculousness of Danger that seemed to bother some others.  One of the things I love about this show overall is its attention to detail, and the sometimes surprising ways it develops its characters.  I thought this episode was strong on both counts.  Holt in his short shorts was incredible and hilarious on its own, but was made all the more wonderful because in season one (which episode?), Jake was trying to persuade/pressure Holt about something by saying he wouldn't tell anyone about the time he saw the captain outside of work wearing "short shorts."   Of course, at the time, I thought Jake was just making shit up and being a cheeky punk, but lo and behold: Holt wears short shorts!  Hell yeah.

 

Also really enjoyed Rosa's totally deadpan (and deadly) "What?" when Jake said that, as her friend, he'd push her up like a bra, and his correction: "I mean, like a brassiere, which is totally different."

Rosa: Come on, man.

Jake: Not better.

 

For me, the team spirit support of Amy quitting smoking was great because it was heartfelt, and because each character supporting her revealed something vulnerable about themselves to each other.  Terry, Gina, and Holt telling Amy about their own addictions was meant to support her endeavor, but it also develops the characters and their relationships.  Perhaps more importantly, it allowed us to actually see Terry Titties, and showed old school Holt saying, "Go Razzmatazz.  Go Razzmatazz.  Go Razzmatazz."  I thought Holt's lesson for Amy was on point--you should quit smoking, but ease up, and recognize that you don't have to be perfect.  And I just loved that he demonstrated his lesson with a dangling preposition he refused to correct.  

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I just wish that Holt's grammatical "errors" (here and with Wuntch) were real ones, not the "superstitions" as my usage book rightly calls them (ending with preposition, split infinitive) that aren't really faults at all. But I suppose those are the only ones a general TV audience will identify as such. 

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I thoroughly enjoyed the episode but what rang particularly true to me was Jake's motto for the UPS: "Surprisingly, we still exist."

 

BWAH HA HA!!

 

(Although I'm in Canada, my experience with the post office suggests they desperately want to be obsolete and are doing everything in their power to demonstrate how inefficient, ineffectual, and generally incompetent they are.)

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I loved just about everything in this episode. Boyle was absolute perfection, Holt and Terry were fabulous as always.

 

The one thing that bothered me a little was when Rosa got on Jake's ass about how he handled the case. Now, don't get me wrong, he didn't do things properly and was totally in the wrong; I'm not questioning that. What bothered me was that when Jake went to her about his issues with doofus Danger, she, IMO, kind of used her friendship with him to get him to go along ("I'm ASKING you..."). But when he screwed up, she was all, "you went against my ORDERS" and pulled rank. That kind of annoyed me a bit since I felt she was trying to have it both ways. Compel the guy with your friendship and basically phrase it like you're asking him a favour but then get all official afterwards.

Edited by NoWillToResist
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I absolutely love the way Boyle absolutely loves Jake

 

 

Great episode. I actually like Ed Helms (although I stopped watching The Office right around the time Jim and Pam got married, so I didn't see his character devolve as I heard it did) and I thought he was a good fit with Peralta and Boyle. 

 

Me too!  Although it's a totally different dynamic, it reminds me of how Leslie's unabashed adoration for Ann on P&R

 

And I loved her terrible lies about teaching a pigeon to do the cancan

 

 

This?  Was my favorite line of the entire show!  It's just such a silly little throwaway joke, but it tickled me enormously!

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When Holt talked about being addicted to playing the ponies, my first thought was, "This show is nuts enough that I would be completely unsurprised if the flashback was of him buying massive numbers of My Little Ponies or Breyer figures."

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Amy in a tank top was a highlight for me!

 

I was surprised that he wasn't evil; just incomptant.

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." But don't rule out malice. Hanlon's Law

 

And I loved her terrible lies about teaching a pigeon to do the cancan

This?  Was my favorite line of the entire show!  It's just such a silly little throwaway joke, but it tickled me enormously!

And Scully going to see the pigeons!

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