Brooklyn Nine-Nine's midseason finale ended with the biggest and probably scariest cliffhanger the show has ever seen when civilian employee Gina (Chelsea Peretti) proclaimed she'd rather get hit by a bus than get another text message from her coworker Charles - then promptly got hit by a bus.
A month after the fateful episode, Peretti revealed that she is expecting her first child with husband Jordan Peele - causing some fans to worry that the real-life news hinted at her character's fate. But there are only a few more days until Brooklyn Nine-Nine returns and Gina's fate will be revealed.
Star Andy Samberg tells The Hollywood Reporter that he, too, was shocked by the violent cliffhanger.
"It definitely caught me off guard how abrupt it was when I finally saw it," he says - and he knew what was going to happen. "[Showrunner] Dan Goor and I were talking and he said, 'What do you think of this idea?' and we started laughing really hard. Just because it seemed so out of character for the show and also because the character of Gina seems so indestructible. It just felt like an interesting thing to try out and, especially since Fox was giving us this midseason break, it was a fun way to kind of keep the ball in the air. And then when we saw it we were like, 'Holy cow, that was violent!'"
In the return episode, "The Audit," the squad will be under pressure to perform at the highest level when they find out that Brooklyn will be shutting down one of its precincts, and Amy's ex-boyfriend, Teddy (Kyle Bornheimer), is the man tasked with auditing the Nine-Nine. The week after will see guest appearances by Nathan Fillion and Greg Germann, and later in the season, an arc from Gina Gershon.
"One of the things I'm very proud of is we consistently work with really great people," Samberg says. "We keep it in the comedy community a lot, and when we go to more heavies for the acting, they're always people who are super interesting."
John P. Fleenor/FOX
Teddy's return will put Jake (Samberg) and Amy's (Melissa Fumero) relationship to the test, but Samberg said he thinks the couple will remain strong - for the time being, at least.
"People seem to like - and I also really like - showing them as a functional couple. In the beginning when we first started putting their story together, it felt a little more like it was going to be a will they/won't they structure and it just, for some reason, didn't feel natural to the show."
He continues, "Even though they are very different people, personality-wise, there was something that brought them together very naturally. We talked a lot about how there are many couples who meet each other in the workplace. They start off as coworkers and then friends, and then it happens really slowly and organically and for some reason it works because they know each other so well. We liked that as the model for Jake and Amy. To this point, that's the way that it's been, and we've been enjoying that."
There are ten episodes left in Brooklyn Nine-Nine's fourth season, but the show has not yet earned a pickup for a season five. Samberg says, however, that ratings aren't really on his mind.
"I feel like the way TV shows are measured has changed a lot in the last five, six years," Samberg says. "There's so much more expansion in terms of streaming and DVR and International. From the way that it's explained to me, we are doing an actual really good overall number in terms of how many people on this Earth see our show each episode by the time it's done running through all the different systems."
Samberg also gets feedback from fans who approach him and compliment him on the show.
"There's very few comedies, especially, left, and very few dramas too," he says, "anything that's not event TV on networks that's getting massive ratings at this point."
He continues, "I feel like we're right in there with all the other shows that I like. I don't want to speak on behalf of the network, of course, but certainly the overnight ratings, they don't matter to me that much, I can tell you that."
Brooklyn Nine-Nine airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on Fox.