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Andre Braugher reexamines his cop roles, says Brooklyn Nine-Nine must portray police brutality right

  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine co-creator Dan Goor confirms to Variety that Season 8 will have a storyline devoted to police brutality in the wake of the George Floyd protests. "We want to make sure we get it right,” he says. Braugher says it's imperative that the show rise to the moment. "Brooklyn Nine-Nine has to commit itself, as a comedy, to telling the story of how these things happen, and what’s possible to deal with them," says Braugher, echoing comments he made last month. "I don’t have any easy answers, nor do I have a window into the mind bank of this writing staff. Can you tell the same story? Can anyone in America maintain any kind of innocence about what police departments are capable of?” Braugher adds that he has no idea how his character, Capt. Holt, will be affected by a police brutality storyline. “Can a comedy sustain the things that we’re trying to talk about? I don’t know," he says. "It could be a really groundbreaking season that we’re all going to be very, very proud of, or we’re going to fall flat on our face. … But I think this is a staff, a cast and a crew that’s willing to take it on and give it our best. I think we have a damn good chance to tell the kinds of stories that heretofore have only been seen on grittier shows.” Braugher, who won an Emmy playing   Det. Frank Pembleton on NBC's Homicide: Life on the Street, says he's also been reexamining his police roles in wake of the Black Lives Matter protests this year. “I look up after all these decades of playing these characters, and I say to myself, it’s been so pervasive that I’ve been inside this storytelling, and I, too, have fallen prey to the mythology that’s been built up,” he says. “It’s almost like the air you breathe or the water that you swim in. It’s hard to see. But because there are so many cop shows on television, that’s where the public gets its information about the state of policing. Cops breaking the law to quote, ‘defend the law,’ is a real terrible slippery slope. It has given license to the breaking of law everywhere, justified it and excused it. That’s something that we’re going to have to collectively address — all cop shows.”

    TOPICS: Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Homicide, Dan Goor, George Floyd, Black Lives Matter