‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ Is ‘Starting Over’ In Wake Of Black Lives Matter Protests

"We hope through this we’re going to make something that will be truly groundbreaking this year."

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Cop sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine is reevaluating its portrayal of police in wake of the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests, with actor Terry Crews saying the show has thrown four episodes of its upcoming seventh season “in the trash”.

Talking to Deadline, Crews, who plays Lieutenant Terry Jeffords on the show, says that showrunner Dan Goor decided to scrap the episodes, which were “all ready to go”.

“We have to start over,” he said. “Right now we don’t know which direction it’s going to go in.”

Crews added that the cast and crew have talked in-depth about the show’s place.

“[We’ve had] a lot of somber talks about it and deep conversations and we hope through this we’re going to make something that will be truly groundbreaking this year. We have an opportunity here, and we plan to use it in the best way possible.”

The news comes amid a wider push to reexamine how police procedurals and media portrayals of law officials shape the public’s perception of the police and largely fail to address corruption and systemic racism. Brooklyn Nine-Nine, specifically, has been called out, given the show is celebrated for its progressive social politics and plotlines.

In an article for Vulture titled “Cops Are Always The Main Characters”, Kathryn VanArendok says, “If anything, the show’s lightness makes it an even more effective way to generate empathy for the police, who come across as sweet, thoughtful people just trying their best. It sanitizes the police.”

Last month, Brooklyn Nine-Nine showrunner Dan Goor announced he and the cast “condemn the murder of George Floyd and support the many people who are protesting police brutality nationally” and had donated $100,000 to a US national bailout fund.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine was recently renewed for an eighth season, and finished airing its seventh in April.