Psychotic arsonist Helen Gorbelson

Helen Gorbelson (Meghann Murphy) is the main villainess from "The Puzzle Maker," episode 5.15 of Brooklyn Nine-Nine (airdate April 8, 2018). She is an avid "puzzler" (crossword puzzle enthusiast) who was shown in line looking to enter a crossword event at the Turnkey Bar.

Helen was standing behind Jake Peralta and Amy Santiago, who were working undercover on their final case as detectives before Amy officially becomes a sergeant. The case involved an arsonist setting random fires to gain the attention of crossword puzzle author Melvin "Vin" Sturmley, an idol of Amy's, and regarding Helen, she responded to Jake's question about her feelings about Vin by referring to him as her future husband.

As it turned out, Helen's adoration was actually a psychotic obsession, as she was the one burning buildings to get Vin to marry her. She set fire to two buildings shortly before the events, and she burned down a lard factory at the street corner that Jake was keeping an eye on before leaving to join Charles Boyle to follow his own hunch, which turned out to be incorrect. Amy later scolded Jake for leaving his watch and doing so because it was Vin's idea and not his, but stated that he had no reason to be jealous of Vin because his good detective work was the reason that she wanted to marry him.

The word "marry," as it turned out, would reveal Helen as the arsonist, as Jake figured out that she was trying to spell out that word during the fires, and he remembered Helen referring to Vin as her "future husband." At the end the episode, the insane Helen was shown in a holding cell, asking Vin if he saw the fires she set. Amy revealed that Helen confessed to the acts of arson, while Jake revealed to Vin that the villainess' intended message was a threat to Vin, which stated that she would kill him if he didn't marry her.

Quotes[edit | edit source]

  • "Marry me, or else I will kill you. Yours forever, Helen Gorbelson." (Helen Gorbelson's intended message to Vin Sturmley while setting her various fires)
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