Brooklyn Nine-Nine, eh? Here's every Canadian reference from the NYC cop comedy that loves the north

Before the Season 4 finale airs tonight, revisit all of the show's tributes to the Great White North.

Before the Season 4 finale airs tonight, revisit all of the show's tributes to the Great White North

The squad visits Drummondville, Quebec. (FOX)

Canada is long used to being an easy punchline in American media. But it would be criminal to not recognize that Brooklyn Nine-Nine, the New York-based police sitcom starring Andy Samberg, has been super-sizing their Canadian references since the show debuted in 2013.

First, there are the throwaway one-liners, like "Oh, Canada. Truly Odie to America's Garfield." That's nothing unusual for American TV, but the sheer volume of those references is definitely noticeable. Where things really get suspicious, though (it is a cop show, after all, so everyone's a suspect), is in the Canada-based plot lines. Whether it's Detective Charles Boyle being faced with an impossibly difficult decision when his fiancée Vivian gets a job in suburban Ottawa or show star Detective Jake Peralta travelling to Drummondville, Que. to help clear his dad's name for drug smuggling, the show's writers have a tendency to look north for story inspiration.

It goes deeper, too: one of the most serious emotional back stories involves Jake's dad abandoning him and moving to Quebec as a child, and some of his most important character development comes from grappling with that. And perceptive fans may have also noticed that Parks and Recreation — another show co-created by Brooklyn Nine-Nine's Michael Schur, and which features many of the same writers and crew members — also has an emotional storyline in which a loved one moves to Ottawa. We have to wonder: what exactly happened, and to whom, to cause all this? It might take a real detective squad to get to the bottom of it — but in the meantime, we've rounded up all the evidence.

Below, you'll find just about every single Canada reference on Brooklyn Nine-Nine so far. Every time we catch one, we're like, "Noice! Smort."


Season 1, Episode 3 - "The Slump"

Rosa: Fly to Montreal, hit a classy hotel bar, bone a stranger. Slump over.

Jake: Wow, that sounds amazing.


Terry: Pick your easiest, no-brainer case and work it till it's done.

Jake: Fine. Right after I do Rosa's Montreal sex thing. That sounds fun.

Season 1, Episode 17 - "Full Boyle"

Jake: How'd the interview with the victim go?

Charles: It went OK. The guy was from Canada — said it was probably his fault for getting robbed and apologized for wasting my time.

Jake: Oh, Canada. Truly Odie to America's Garfield.

Season 1, Episode 19 - "Tactical Village"

Jake: Which embassy?

Rosa: Doesn't matter.

Jake: Fine. Canada, then.

Charles's fiancée Vivian at the breakfast where Jake tries to tell her Charles doesn't want to move to Ottawa. (FOX)

Season 1, Episode 20 - "Fancy Brudgom"

Charles: Vivian got a job in suburban Ottawa. She wants me to retire from the NYPD and go with her...I'm excited to go. I mean, suburban Ottawa's great. It has everything Brooklyn does — other than my job and my friends and my family, you, interesting people, museums, restaurants, every other reason that I have to live.

Jake: OK, I'm kind of picking up on a couple of clues that you maybe don't want to retire in Canada.

Charles: Oh my god. Jake, you're such an amazing detective. I don't want to go!

Jake: OK, Boyle, let's strategize on how you're gonna tell Vivian that you don't want to move to Canada.


Charles: Every time I bring up Ottawa, she says how excited she is about our future...I don't want to move to Canada, but I can't lose her. You're my best man. Please help me.

Jake: Fine, I'll try.

Charles: OK, but bring it up naturally so she doesn't think I put you up to it.

Jake: Sure, how hard could that be? I'm constantly talking about suburban Ottawa.


Jake: So Vivian, do you ever go watch hockey?

Vivian: No, I'm not one for sports.

Jake: Hey, can you pass me the maple syrup, please? Speaking of, where does the best maple syrup come from again?

Charles: Vermont! Oh, and Canada.

Vivian: Chuck is excited about moving to Canada, right, baby?

Charles: Mouth full. I love you.

Jake: But what about his job and all of his friends and his Brooklyn-based pizza blog? Do they even have pizza in Canada?

Vivian: Yes! It's puffier and it's sweet. It's called Manitoba Sauce Cake.

Season 1, Episode 21 - "Unsolvable"

Charles: I'm talking to Vivian. We're still trying to figure out whether we should move to Canada. It's awful. Thank god it hasn't affected how much we bathe together.

Season 2, Episode 4 - "Halloween II"

Charles: He could be anywhere. He could be in Canada by now. There are so many forests up there — that country is one giant hiding place.

Jake and Charles experiencing some Canadian culture: the airport in Drummondville, Que. (FOX)

Season 2, Episode 18 - "Captain Peralta"

Jake: [My dad's] busy. He's an airline pilot.

Charles: Regional airline.

Jake: He flies internationally!

Charles: Pfft, Quebec to Albany.


Roger (Jake's dad): Last week I was flying into Albany from Quebec — you know how I always keep my snowboard with me in case I get a chance to carve. Well, Canadian customs found some prescription meds in my board bag. They're accusing me of smuggling.


Jake: The Canadian cops think that my dad used his security clearance to smuggle in over a thousand pills of Turgidol.

Hitchcock: Canadian erection medication! Very potent. What? I don't need it — but I love it.

Jake: This is about my dad and proving his innocence. Sir, I'd like to go to Canada for a few days and help him out.


Scully: The cops said your dad's being held without bail, they want us on the next flight out and that Bernard's is the best poutine place in the airport.


Jake: [singing] O Canada, you home of crappy cops. Guess who just freed his dad from Canadian prison and slammed six free mimosas on the first-class flight home, sans the juice?


Captain Holt: Nice job in Quebec. I bet the local cops weren't happy you showed them up.

Jake: Maybe not at first, but by the end, they kept calling me a real "bâtard," which I can only assume means "hero."

Holt: It means "bastard."

Season 2, Episode 19 - "Sabotage"

Jake: I always pay my power bill. Often late. One time in person with Canadian pennies.

Charles dressed as Elvis — or possibly Elvis Stojko. (FOX)

Season 2, Episode 5 - "Halloween III"

Holt: Squad, that's enough. You're making Boyle feel bad on purpose. He's Elvis.

Charles: Yes!

Holt: Elvis Stojko, the Canadian figure skater.

Charles: No!

Season 3, Episode 7 - "The Mattress"

Jake: Submit order — province? Oh no, we're on the Canadian website.


Season 3, Episode 10 - "Yippie Kayak"

Jake: Alright, where are you holding the hostages?

Suspect: I bet you'd like to know, eh?

Jake: Canadian?! No! You're so clearly supposed to be German.

Voice on walkie talkie: You there?

Jake: Uh, yeah, I was oot but now I'm back, eh?

Voice on walkie talkie: Meet me in the service corridor. We've got a situation with the hostages.

Jake: Okey dokey, sorry to hear aboot that.

Season 3, Episode 14 - "Karen Peralta"

Jake: Topics to avoid — how my dad left us and ruined our lives, how my dad got remarried twice and ruined our lives, how my dad moved to Canada and ruined our lives.


Karen (Jake's mom): I like your father. And I know he has been a selfish jerk, but he really has changed. Last month when I had bronchitis, he flew in on his day off just to bring me soup. It was this weird Canadian soup — I think it was just all cheese. But it was really nice.

Season 4, Episode 8 - "Skyfire Cycle"

Terry: You once took a train to Toronto to get a Canadian VHS copy of Die Hard.

Jake: There was a rumour it was better sound quality!

Season 4, Episode 15 - "The Last Ride"

Holt: Never vacation in Banff.

Come on, Holt — Banff isn't so bad. (Canadian Press)

Brooklyn Nine-Nine's Season 4 finale airs tonight at 8pm ET on City TV.

About the Author

Eleanor Knowles is a digital associate producer at CBC Arts. She loves music, broadcasting, and Oxford commas (in defiance of the CBC language guide). According to a recent trivia night, she is Toronto's reigning Brooklyn Nine-Nine scholar.


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