Two Nine-Nine officers are discussing the New York Knicks in the elevator. When the doors open, they step into utter chaos with Easter bunnies everywhere and some are even fighting. Suddenly a group of the holiday mascots dart outside as one of them leaps off the building. Flashback to six months ago and we learn it is a continuation of the Halloween Heist.
[SPOILERS FOR 7.11 AHEAD!]
Back in October, Jake leads a discussion on the annual event and whether this year a new champion will be crowned or if someone will repeat. Peralta himself is looking to be the first three-time winner. He also talks about how the competition was initially a fun event for team building but has become cutthroat and intense with multiple double crosses. This year, the officers will compete on teams of two and will be handcuffed together to prevent any betrayals.
The duos include Rosa and Scully, Charles and Amy, and Holt and Jake. After winning last year, Terry retires so he can finish on top leaving Hitchcock the odd man out. The prize is an authentic Russian knock off of the Infinity Gauntlet. The Infinitude Gobbler, is an exact replica of the one Thaboo wore in the film, Avengaboys. Its three Infinitude stones will be guarded by Boyle’s doppelganger, Bill, who has become closely associated with the contest. The team who possesses the jewels at the end of the day wins.
As a distraction, Jake sets off a smoke bomb in the bullpen. Beforehand, he memorized the room’s layout and furniture placement while blindfolded so he can now navigate his way to Bill in limited visibility. He successfully retrieves the jewels but trips over a misplaced chair dropping and losing them. Luckily, Holt has an ace up his sleeve and calls Cheddar to recover the stones but the dog ends up swallowing them. This unforeseen incident causes a delay in the heist until the next time everyone is free.
That happens to be another holiday, Valentine’s Day. Due to their unsuccessful attempt at Halloween, Jake and Holt begin bickering and blaming each other. All of a sudden, there is a flurry of activity as Bill receives multiple flower deliveries. In the confusion, Rosa swipes the jewels and stores them in Scully’s mouth. As you can guess, he accidentally swallows them pushing the game back to Easter.
Scully drops out since he is at risk of a shenanigan related death forcing Rosa to team up with a filing cabinet instead. Jake and Holt plan to use several Easter bunnies to run interference and disguise themselves in the same costumes to sneak in and grab the Infinitude stones. Amy learns of the plan from fake therapy sessions she sets up for her husband and she and Boyle dress up as the holiday symbol as well. We then return to the scene from the beginning of the episode with one bunny jumping off the top of the precinct.
As everyone is on the roof, Terry reveals he’s the bunny attached to the filing cabinet. As everyone peers over the side of the building, Rosa sets up a fire display celebrating her victory. Before the competition started, she trained Cheddar to have a taste for ham and was responsible for him being placed on a diet when she posted his pic on the Chonky Pups Instagram account. After dunking the jewels in meat juice, she knew the corgi would swallow them and postpone the competition. She used the same process with Scully to cause the second delay. Then for Easter, she snuck into Jake’s fake therapy sessions to learn of the bunny suits and had Terry help her get detached from the filing cabinet.
Before each stoppage, she swapped out the jewels so technically, Rosa is the first three-time champion of the Heists. The gang meet up at Shaw’s to celebrate. While there Diaz goads everyone into arguing over Heist wins. Strictly speaking, Scully is tied with Amy (with 2) and the filing cabinet has more than Boyle. Channeling her inner Thaboo (or Thanos), Rosa sits on a throne wearing her Infinitude Gobbler and a huge grin as her coworkers quarrel.
In “The Takeback” I pondered if that would be the only (reverse) heist we would get this season. That’s why it was a pleasant surprise when “Valloweaster” was a proper Halloween Heist. It was good to escape for one episode with no personal drama or main villain and solely focus on wacky fun. There are great gags like having Rosa handcuffed to Scully while he uses the bathroom and amusing lines like how Jake admits Betty Rubble gives him a boner while in therapy. I personally enjoyed Charles going deep into the rabbit character becoming Argyle James Hopland; a bachelor bunny engaged in a scandalous affair with a local youth.
The heists are always a highlight and like last season, this episode incorporated other holidays. It was long overdue for Rosa to notch a win and the three-time champion provided a new spin to the competition. Also, unlike her colleagues, she didn’t do it for bragging rights but to see the other detectives fight with each other.
As much fun was had, it was a bit bittersweet seeing Cheddar. Stewart, the little corgi who has played the character since season four, passed away last summer. He truly was a thick king and I hope he’s having fun in doggy heaven.
My Favorite Lines
Amy: You didn’t win the fifth heist. I did. You proposed to me.
Holt: I won that year. You ended up with a modified version of the cummerbund. You only got that because you slept your way into it.
Amy: Sorry sir that no one here wants to bone you, you dusty old skeleton.
Jake: I’ll have you know; a dog’s butt is cleaner than a human’s mouth.
Terry: That can’t be true.
Jake: Well, a dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s mouth and dogs’ mouths lick dogs’ butts so you tell me where my theory is wrong.
Holt: He has no comeback.
Amy: And the infighting continues.
Charles: I guess Jake and I still have the only unbreakable bond in the precinct.
Amy: I mean, he is my husband.
Jake: This is clearly the work of Charles Boyle. The son of a florist.
Charles: You think I make bouquets that look like this? With all this Baby’s Breath? What do you think of me?