There was a collective cry of despair across the internet last week when Fox cancelled its fan-favorite show Brooklyn Nine-Nine, which is about to finish its fifth season. But all hope was not lost — a day later, NBC announced that it would pick up the series for a 13-episode sixth season.
Even though the show has never been a ratings blockbuster, this pick-up makes sense for a few reasons. We worked with emotion measurement company Canvs to uncover insight about why fans love this show so much, and why its resurrection is a win for NBC.
According to Canvs, the latest season of Brooklyn Nine-Nine has been the fourth most emotionally reacted-to broadcast sitcom on Twitter, behind only ABC’s newly revived Roseanne, NBC’s Will & Grace and ABC’s black-ish. It even beats out stalwarts like Family Guy, The Big Bang Theory and Modern Family. (Note: We excluded retweets when looking at Brooklyn Nine-Nine this season because the numbers were heavily skewed by conversation around cast member Terry Crews’ tweetstorm last fall in which he revealed that he was a victim of a past unwanted sexual advance unrelated to the show or his character Terrance Jeffords.)
People comment about loving episodes 17.2% more than any other sitcom and express “craziness” as an Emotional Reaction (ER) 39.5% more. (In this context, “crazy” is definitely a positive ER as fans love to watch the show to see what shenanigans the characters get up to next.)
So far this season, Rosa (portrayed by Stephanie Beatriz) has been the character driving the most emotional conversation, slightly ahead of Jake (Andy Samberg). This is a departure from the previous season (four) during which Jake ignited the most conversation, followed by Amy (Melissa Fumero) and Raymond Holt (Andre Braugher).
So far this season, #renewb99 has been the third most-used hashtag, illustrating the audience’s love for the show and the desire to see it continue — a desire that NBC has now fulfilled.
With television, and sitcoms in particular, one big reason why people keep tuning in is the characters. Put simply, viewers develop what feels like real relationships with the people on screen. And in the case of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, those characters are a huge emotional driver (the top five ER drivers this season have been people). In picking up the show, NBC is not only keeping a solid comedy franchise alive, it’s allowing viewers to invite beloved Brooklyn Nine-Nine characters into their lives for at least one more year.