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A Computer Catastrophe Cripples the Precinct on 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' (RECAP)

BROOKLYN NINE-NINE -- "Ticking Clocks" Episode 615 -- Pictured: (l-r) Sean Astin as as Sergeant Knox, Andre Braugher as Ray Holt -- (Photo by: John P. Fleenor/NBC)

If you're a fan of The Goonies, Lord of the Rings or Stranger Things, chances are you were excited to see a familiar face at the 99th precinct tonight.

Much like Lin-Manuel Miranda, Sean Astin (also known as Mikey, Samwise Gamgee and Bob Newby) was one of Brooklyn Nine-Nine's biggest celebrity advocates during the tense times following its cancellation. Tonight, he appeared on the show as Sgt. Knox, a seemingly helpful member of the NYPD who helps the squad track down a cyber criminal who's wreaking havoc on the precinct's servers. But is Knox really doing all he can to help solve the problem?

A Digital Disaster

The precinct's been dealing with computer issues — apparently the internet's been down all morning. Jake and Rosa stop by Holt's office to get more info, and they find out that a hacker is trying to break into their servers. Not great, because all the info regarding their undercover agents is on the servers.

Sergeant Knox, who's helping the precinct fix the problem, reminds Jake that they can't just "unplug" the servers. Holt can't use his override code, because they'd lose four months of evidence. The only solution, Holt says, is to track down the attacker. Through Knox's tech they figure out the hacker is inside the building, and they only have fifteen minutes to find them. As Jake and Rosa step on the elevator to start their search, Rosa's girlfriend, Jocelyn, shows up only a few minutes before she'll have to leave the city... and she breaks up with Rosa.

Unlocked, Unfortunately

Jocelyn tells her she feels like Rosa never has time for her because of her job, but instead of ending the relationship on that note, Rosa asks her to wait in the breakroom so they can talk. Jake and Rosa then search the first floor, and she tells him she has a plan to deal with the Joceyln problem — she'll fix things with her, wait until they're stronger than ever, and then dump her. Jake's not in favor of that plan, but Rosa's determined to be the "dumper," because she's never been broken up with.

Meanwhile, the rest of the squad searches Floors 3, 2 and 4, and they don't find anything. They all meet in Holt's office and Knox says he's been trying to figure out what point the hacker is plugged into, but he doesn't have time to explain anything else before the hacker opens the holding cell. The precinct is flooded with previously locked up sorority girls!

Destroyed or Devoted?

The squad tries to get the girls back in the holding cell. As Jake and Rosa try to reason with a drunk sorority girl who locked herself in one of the precinct's rooms, Rosa tells Jake she didn't mean what she said earlier about Jocelyn. "I'm not going to destroy her. I actually love her," Rosa says. Once they've gotten the drunk girl under control, Rosa goes to Jocelyn and tries to apologize, but her girlfriend doesn't seem like she wants to hear it. "I need more," she tells her.

With only a few minutes left, Amy arrives (she'd been at the dentist, but she left early so she could be present for the search) and Knox says Holt needs to wipe the servers. Just as Holt goes to enter his code, they get a ping from the tracker: the hacker is in room 103. They go down to Room 103, but they don't find anything... then they realize, because they don't know anything about computers, Knox could've been telling them anything and they would've believed it. Amy realizes Knox is a criminal from a murder case, and he was trying to delete evidence from the server.

Room 103

Jake texts Holt to make him aware of the situation, but Knox catches on. He holds Holt at gunpoint and tries to leave the precinct with him, but an alarm sounds — thanks to Hitchcock and Scully's burned microwave lunch — and they're able to apprehend him. Rosa works things out with Jocelyn, and though she'll miss her flight, they've smoothed out the wrinkles in their relationship.

Other Observations:

  • If Nine-Nine is making a habit of having its celebrity advocates as guest stars... when will we be seeing Mark Hamill, Guillermo Del Toro or Seth Meyers?
  • I loved seeing Sean Astin tonight, but I can't help but wish the show had given him more to do as a guest star. Or maybe I'm just not used to seeing Astin as a bad guy? Bob Newby, Sgt. Knox was not.
  • Kudos to the writers of this episode — I was genuinely surprised by this twist! For a minute I thought Jocelyn might be the hacker, but I'm glad that wasn't the case.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Thursdays, 9/8c, NBC

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