In many ways, Dave Majors is exactly the kind of guy that Jake aspires to be.
He’s got record arrests, has access to secret clubs, and is liberal and chill as hell. But there’s a difference between Majors (Raising Hope‘s Garrett Dillahunt) and Jake, and that difference is that Jake cares about being cool and what people think of him.
Which is what makes he and Amy so similar. Besides the fact that they’re both giant nerds, they’re both desperate to seek Holt’s approve (in different ways, but that drive is still there), and they both want to be the best at their job.
But they’re not, because that’s what Dave Majors is. A detective from another precinct in Brooklyn, Jake and Amy both sign up to work with him to catch a group of robbers that has looted banks in both of their precincts. Dave is the real life embodiment of one of Jake’s cool cop personas. He’s a guy that Jake has worn and tried on before for a mission or two, but is a person that Jake isn’t and can’t be full time. Because Jake’s a goofball, a cop that cares too much about being cool to ever really be cool, and that’s why it freaks him out so much when Dave admits that he wants to ask Santiago out after their investigation is closed.
Because yes, Jake likes Amy, but before now he didn’t have to do anything about it. There wasn’t anyone like Dave hanging around, taking an interest in Amy the way that he is, and Jake could take his time in finding the right moment to ask her out. But, realistically, there isn’t a right moment. You could wait forever to find a perfect moment, but before you can, something else usually gets in the way. People don’t wait forever, not even for someone that they really like. Eventually, you have to cut your losses, and Jake, in realizing this, wants to make his intentions clear before the window in which he can do so closes. He doesn’t want to be the dick that stops other guys from asking Amy out just because he likes her, but as Rosa reminds him, if Jake really wants Amy to have a choice, he needs to make sure she knows that he’s an option too.
So he decides to let her know. It’s a little strange watching Jake stress as he attempts to ask Amy out on a date, because we know, as the viewer, that this relationship is a foregone conclusion. Jake admitted that he liked Amy back in the season one finale- and it was clear long before then- with Amy finally opening up about her feelings back in episode 9 of season 2, “The Road Trip.” These two are clearly fond of each other — Jake himself mentioning the moment that the pair had at Gina and Boyle’s parents’ wedding — but their timing has always been bad, between undercover investigations and defense attorney girlfriends.
But for Jake, and for everybody that’s ever liked someone, nothing is ever a foregone conclusion. Does they other person really like you back? Will they want to date you? Will you be a good match and stick together? And most importantly: is the risk worth it? Nothing is ever certain for people — fictional characters included — even if the show that they live in has a formula (a romantic, sitcom kind) to follow. So when Dave tells Jake that he’s going to ask Amy out, Jake’s Santiago-timeline gets a kick. He breaks into the club where he knows that Dave has taken Amy, intending on disrupting their date to let her know that he too is interested in her (romantic stylez, that is, and no, I’ll never get sick of that phrase so put it in their wedding vows, Mike Schur), but when he gets there what he sees makes him stop.
Amy looks happy with Dave — tucking her hair behind her ears, a sign that Rosa says is a sure signal that she likes someone — and Jake can’t bring himself to break that up to selfishly confess that he wants Amy too, just as someone else (a cool, successful someone else) is interested.
So, he leaves. But, by the end of the episode, it becomes clear that Amy is taking her time with Jake, too. She turned Dave down — the Dave Majors, as Jake reminds her — and although she tells Jake that it’s because she doesn’t want to date a cop after what she went through with Teddy, the look on her face when he leaves, and that image of her tucking her hair behind her ears tells us a different story.
Jake likes Amy, Amy likes Jake. It should be simple, and I’m sure that, by the end of this season, it probably will be. But for now, Jake and Amy are still burning slow, and honestly, that’s a lot of fun to watch. As Jake tells Rosa, “The stakes are through the roof for me on this one.” For us, Jake and Amy are a sure bet. But for them, thinking about trying this thing for real, the risk is huge. Brooklyn Nine-Nine is taking its time with Jake and Amy, and that’s a good thing: they’re taking this relationship seriously.
- Meanwhile, in Plot B, Terry gets a tempting offer from a private security firm, one that he ultimately turns down after Holt makes him digitize his files, the memories reminding him of why he loves this job so much.
- Rosa wears a hot pink shirt. And looks great in it. There is much discussion behind her back about it, before everybody says nothing to her about it because Rosa is scary: “If Rosa had a twin, she would have eaten her in the womb.”
- Jake, trying to convince Holt to pick him for the investigation: “Look at me! I mean, not in profile.” It’s okay, Jake, Amy digs your big nose.
- And who wouldn’t love this dork? “Juicy, juicy; good call, good call; tight, tight, tight, tight, tight.” “I can’t make a woman’s choice for her — I stand with Wendy!”
- And, in the best line from the episode: “Why doesn’t your mouth work?” “‘Why Doesn’t Your Mouth Work’: title of our sex tape!” “What?” “Your sex tape! What? No!”