Brooklyn Nine-Nine isn’t a particularly Jewish show, though it has had a few key (and hilarious) Jewish moments. But the fifth episode of the current sixth season upped the Jewish ante in a major way, bringing us the best bar mitzvah DJ representation we’ve seen on screen in a long time. Or possibly ever. (Has there ever been a television plot revolving around a bar mitzvah DJ?! Please let me know. My DMs are open.)
In the episode, Detective Jake Peralta (played by NJB Andy Samberg) teams up with Doug Judy (the always funny Craig Robinson) to figure out who is imitating Doug’s former crime alias, the “Pontiac Bandit.” We won’t spoil anything, but Jake insists that it can’t be Doug, because he got clean now. What’s his new career path? Bar mitzvah DJ, of course.
Before we dive in, we first have to mention the cold open, where Boyle gets jealous of Jake’s camp friend.
Sleepaway camp reference for the win!
Anyways. Skipping ahead: Terry (Terry Crews) suspects it is Doug who is still the Pontiac Bandit, and that there’s no imitator. However, Doug has an alibi, as Terry discovers: Doug was DJing Joshy Greenbaum’s bar mitzvah. To you Brooklyn Nine-Nine writers: A+ use of the name Joshy Greenbaum, a very Jewish name.
Doug’s reaction? “Auntie Karen is a freak.” (Don’t we all have a freaky Aunt Karen!?)
Jake is taken aback: “Judy, you DJ bar mitzvahs?”
(Side-note: They’re both wearing wigs because Doug wanted one as a “disguise” and Jake wanted to match him.)
“Best gig I ever had,” Doug responds. “No one likes hip-hop more than a 13-year-old Jewish boy.”
Doug, Jake, and Terry decide to try and catch the imitation Pontiac Bandit; but first, they have to stop at Justin Friedman’s bar mitzvah. Obviously.
The scene switches to Doug Judy singing Hava Nagila, joining a long line of television shows to showcase the popular Jewish tune:
At the bar mitzvah, there are a lot of visual cues that just felt so right: the sports decorations (classsssic bar mitzvah theme), the awkward teens, the dancing of the hora, the big letters reading JUSTIN and MAZEL TOV.
Even the DJ knowing random kids’ names feels so right:
So did giving the bar mitzvah boy a nickname, like Doug calling Justin “J-smooth”:
Doug is also wearing a yarmulke, obvs:
Keep doing you, Brooklyn Nine-Nine.