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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Andre Braugher speaks on the "new challenges" of Brooklyn Nine-Nine's 8th season

Illustration for article titled Andre Braugher speaks on the new challenges of iBrooklyn Nine-Nine/isi /i 8th season
Image: Jordin Althaus/NBC

Though any and all TV filming in the U.S. may still be months (?) away, NBC favorite Brooklyn Nine-Nine has been using the downtime to reconsider their approach for season eight. As we know, the writers have already scrapped the the first four scripts amid the summer protests that have emerged globally in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. Emmy nominee Andre Braugher—Captain Ray Holt, to some—appeared on EW’s The Awardist podcast to talk about the show, including the “new challenge” that precedes the upcoming season.

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“It was promised to me that this would be a show that acknowledges the world as it is, that we would hold the mirror up to life,” Braugher said of the comedy. “And now we’re going into an eighth season with a new challenge, which is that everyone’s knowledge and feelings about police have been profoundly affected. What we have from [writer and co-creator Daniel Goor] is a commitment to write a smart show that will not attempt to hide itself in a fantasy. So the Nine-Nine is going to have to deal with what we know about the New York Police Department.”

Thought he feels “confident” that the show will achieve that objective in a “smart and funny” way, Braugher notes that he still has no idea how this acknowledgement will be worked into the scripts, which is understandable, considering that nobody knows when production will safely start. What the actor hopes the show manages to do is dispel the notion that cops are above the law. “It’s a very complicated subject, but I think they have to be portrayed much more realistically, in terms of this: The convention… that police breaking the law is okay because somehow it’s in the service of some greater good, is a myth that needs to be destroyed,”

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Last month, Andy Samberg spoke to People about the change, and the cast seems to be on one accord about the need for a change in approach. “We’re taking a step back, and the writers are all rethinking how we’re going to move forward, as well as the cast,” Samberg said. “We’re all in touch and kind of discussing how you make a comedy show about police right now, and if we can find a way of doing that that we all feel morally okay about.”

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