Gina Linetti is almost as much of a goofball as Jake, and definitely as much of a nerd as Amy. She is passionate about so many things and completely unapologetic about it. Frequently she’ll make statements that seem completely out of sync with whatever is going on in the episode, but these statements often turn out to be seeds of wisdom with great value. The character to shed light on Gina’s ingenuity (would she call it inginauity?) is the proper “no-nonsense” Captain Holt.
In the first season, Terry interviews candidates for IT specialist and the Captain insists that Gina sit in on all the interviews. She exhibits strange and seemingly inappropriate behavior (flossing? really?) and asks irrelevant questions. The episode ends in her explaining in detail how each of her choices provided a solid indication which candidate would be best for the job. I love that Captain Holt correctly estimated her value in this process even though Terry had no idea what she was trying to achieve.
In S3E14 the team is having a social-bonding evening in an escape room, and Gina points to the phone and says she’s intrigued by it because it seems like it would be useful for gossip. Captain Holt says, “Interesting,” in an earnest way, takes her seriously, follows this hunch and it turns out to be right.
I don’t particularly like Gina’s character. I find her irritating and often unkind. But these moments of Captain Holt trusting her instincts remind me that Gina truly belongs with the nine-nine, and she, too, is an amazing administrative assistant slash genius.