OTP Tuesday: Peraltiago

Presenting OTP Tuesday! Each Tuesday I will introduce you to a new One True Pairing! Tune in each week to find out which fictional couple you need to agonize/squee over next. This week I am pumped to talk all about Peraltiago.

Who Are Peraltiago?

Peraltiago is the ship name for Jake Peralta and Amy Santiago from the hit comedy Brooklyn 99. Peraltiago was actually spoken in the show! It’s always exciting to see a ship name get canon reference.

Jake Peralta

Jake Peralta is the protagonist of Brooklyn 99. When we first meet Jake, he is already a very talented detective, but he has a lot of growing up to do. Jake is used to playing by his own rules, working alone, and doing whatever he wants, thanks to the lackadaisical attitude of his precinct captain. When a new captain comes in – Captain Raymond Holt – at first it seems like the worst thing that could happen to Jake. Holt is straight-laced and by the book, and he won’t stand for Jake’s immaturity and shenanigans. However, Holt sees potential in Jake and pushes him to be the best he can be, even allowing Jake’s rivalry with fellow detective Amy Santiago, as it makes them both work harder.

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C/O NBC

Under Holt’s supervision, Jake grows a lot. To be fair, a lot else happens. Jake ends up working undercover on an FBI operation for a while. He ends up in Witness Protection after angering a top criminal, with only Holt for company. Jake even ends up in prison for a time after being framed. Through all these events, Jake is forced to grow up. The undercover operation forces him to face his growing admiration for Santiago, which eventually leads to them getting together.

Witness Protection pushes him and Holt to deal with the differences between them. They come to a new understanding after so long together. And jail forces Jake to focus on what’s really important. By the time we get to the end of season 5, Jake has changed a lot. He’s still goofy and immature. His favorite movie is Die Hard and he makes stupid jokes. But he has become a better person. He understands teamwork and family and does whatever he can to help his team.

Amy Santiago

Amy Santiago starts off the show as the thorn in Jake’s side and ends as his partner-in-crime (so to speak). At the start, Amy was Jake’s rival. They have a bet going on as to who can make the most arrests in a year. Both take the bet seriously, and Holt worries that the results will change the precinct forever. It does, but not in the way he perhaps thought it might. When Amy loses the bet, she is forced to go on the “worst date ever” with Jake. In reality, it goes pretty well, and Jake realizes he has feelings for Amy, though he doesn’t immediately act on them. Instead, Amy starts dating another detective, Teddy. When Jake tells Amy he has feelings for her right before going undercover, it has the potential to shake things up.

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C/O NBC

Jake returns after a few months and he and Amy agree to move on. That proves difficult, however, as both have lingering feelings that neither is willing to address. Eventually, they kiss while undercover and are forced to admit how they feel. Dating Jake doesn’t change Amy completely, however. They are still competitive, especially with the yearly Halloween heist. When neither Holt or Jake will choose her for their team, she wins all on her own.

Amy pushes herself to be the best, wanting to be captain one day. When she becomes a sergeant, it’s as big a moment for her as anything else. By the end of season 5, Amy has changed less than Jake. She is still passionate and career-driven, with an almost hero-worship of Captain Holt. She is still precise and exacting in everything she does. But now she does it all with a solid partner by her side.

Why Is Peraltiago Bae?

Peraltiago was one of the main reasons I wanted to watch Brooklyn 99 (them and Rosa Diaz). From everything I had seen online, Peraltiago was a great ship, one of the ships that made you believe in real love. They did not disappoint, and I binged the entire show in less than two weeks (which doesn’t sound like much, but that does include both Christmas and New Year’s).

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C/O @loopholehighfives

Peraltiago was everything I’d hoped for and more. Watching Jake and Amy come together is sweet and happy. There’s no angst or heartbreak like a lot of other ships I’d seen. We didn’t waste time on misunderstandings or other crappy tropes. Instead, we just saw two people who were perfect for each other realize this and come together. It’s beautiful.

Enemies To Friends To Lovers

Hey, hey, it’s my favorite trope! To be fair, Peraltiago stretches the limits of enemies to friends to lovers. This is definitely far more of a rivals to friends to lovers situation. Amy and Jake aren’t enemies, per se. They’re both cops, both on the same side, not facing off against each other.

What we have instead is a beautiful example of when “enemies” really means “rivals.” Jake and Amy aren’t enemies, but they sure as hell are rivals when they start out. This is made explicit through the ongoing bet they have. Both think they are the best detective in the precinct, and mouth off in equal amounts. There’s a lot of ego.

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C/O NBC

In fact, the bet consumes a lot of the action in the first season. Holt encourages it at first, seeing that it makes both detectives more productive, but worries about the results. With these two, it could easily be that when one wins the bet, the other takes it very negatively and the precinct derails. Instead, we see the rivalry change into friendly competitiveness. The “to friends” part is often rushed in these situations, but Peraltiago nails the balance. Perhaps this is because they were never really enemies, and it’s true that Jake realizes his feelings early on.

But because it takes them some time to get together, we see Jake and Amy interact as purely friends, which adds something to their relationship. When they do come together, the payoff is sweet. We’ve seen these two transition smoothly from being big-mouthed rivals, to competitive friends, to adorable lovers. We’ve seen their relationship grow and change as they come to understand and appreciate one another better. It’s a beautiful thing to witness.

Opposites Attract

Another trope that is often poorly handled but done well with Peraltiago is the idea that opposites attract. This is a common thing to see in fiction, especially comedy, but isn’t always nuanced enough. We have lots of examples of two people who are completely incompatible coming together because “opposites attract.” Jake and Amy definitely are opposites. Amy is very much a Type-A personality. She is neat and organized to an obsessive degree, and always focused on doing the job. She idolizes a straight-laced Captain Holt and has a clear-cut plan for her future. Jake is sloppy, disorganized, and generally winging his way through life. He sees Holt as an obstacle, at least at first.

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C/O NBC

Because of their differences, Jake and Amy butt heads a lot at first. Jake thinks Amy is too uptight and needs to relax, while Amy thinks Jake needs to grow up and get his act together. The thing is, they’re both right. And when they come together, they help each other with these things. Jake comes to admire Amy’s preparedness, while Amy loves Jake’s carefree attitude. But what really makes the “opposites attract” thing work for Peraltiago is the fact that they aren’t completely opposite. Jake and Amy have enough in common to build a solid relationship on, something that is often lost in these types of relationships.

Both Jake and Amy respect Holt and crave his approval. Both are excellent detectives who want to make the city a safer place. They are competitive and clever, as seen in the heists. Both are smart, though in different ways. These are the things that matter — not what is different about them, but what is the same. Opposites attract — but will never stay together without a grounding connection.

What’s Next For Peraltiago?

Hopefully a honeymoon! Season 5 gave us everything we could want and more. After so many obstacles on their path to happiness, Jake and Amy got engaged in ‘HalloVeen,” the fifth annual Halloween heist. Jake turns the game on its head to make a statement to Amy, and it was honest to god one of the best things I’ve ever watched.

There were some bumps on the road to their happily ever after, of course. But in the season 5 finale, we finally got the Peraltiago wedding. It was, of course, not as planned. When an angry criminal places a bomb, they are unable to have their dream wedding. However, all is not lost, and they have a magical wedding at the precinct, the place where everything came together for them.

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C/O NBC

So Jake and Amy have achieved their goals and are now married. Season 6 premieres this week, and is sure to have new adventures for them. Jake’s best friend Charles wants them to have a kid, and it’s entirely possible that’s what happens next. It would be an interesting story, especially for Jake, who always wanted to have a good, happy family. Or they could go in a different direction. The show has briefly talked about infertility in the past, and that could be something that comes up. Or perhaps we focus less on family building and more on careers.

Amy is now a sergeant and wants to move up the ladder. Holt may be leaving 99, leaving both astray. No matter what happens next, however, we’ve got the payoff. We saw Jake and Amy finally come together and reach their happiness. Their beautiful wedding was the desired end result, and wherever they go forward from here, they can’t take that away from us.

Is Peraltiago Canon?

Hell yeah! (Sorry, I so rarely get to say that… I get excited.) Peraltiago had the potential to be a will-they-won’t-they situation where the couple is clearly, obviously interested, but things keep separating them before they finally make up their minds to get together. The will-they-won’t-they couple is a staple of fiction, as it is often seen as boring if there isn’t that romantic plot tension.

Peraltiago proves all the naysayers wrong. There is nothing less interesting about Jake and Amy after they get together, and their relationship is still one of the driving forces in the Brooklyn 99 fandom. We don’t need endless pining and sexual tension to make a show interesting. You know what is really interesting? Let a couple get together and show us the real work that comes next.

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C/O NBC

Things don’t end when Jake and Amy kiss. The tension is still there. We get to see them decide how to be together when they work together. We get to see how they handle the various obstacles in their path as police officers. Jake’s imprisonment throws a serious wrench in things, but they stay together. That’s much more interesting than will-they-won’t-they. Plus, this shows a healthier perspective of romance. Seeing a couple post getting together shows that real relationships take real work. We see that with Peraltiago, this shows a healthier relationship.

It’s amazing to get that kind of display in a sitcom, but Brooklyn 99 and Peraltiago delivered. I can’t wait to see what’s next for Peraltiago in season 6. They’ve been through a lot and handled it all admirably, and I can’t wait to see them overcome the next challenge. Because, no matter what, Peraltiago is a beautiful ship and it made Brooklyn 99 a fantastic show to watch.

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