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In Brooklyn Nine-Nine series 2 episode 2, Holt explains that his enmity with Wuntch started in 1989, allegedly when he didn't respond to her sexual advance by saying he was gay. However, in series 1 episode 2, Holt says he's been an openly gay policeman since 1987.

Why would Wuntch try such a thing with Holt if he was openly gay, and be surprised when he came out to her?

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    Just because he was openly gay, it doesn't mean everyone knew. I have a boyfriend and he's certainly not a secret but it doesn't mean I discuss it with my work colleagues unless directly relevant to a topic during after work drinks or over lunch – Bee Dec 19 '19 at 14:10
  • It's a major point in Holt's career that he was an openly gay cop, and being an openly gay cop, he was chastised and constantly shunned because of that by his straight white male cop coworkers throughout his career. I don't think it's possible anyone in the precinct didn't know. See S1E16, where this is prominently stated – Gallifreyan Dec 19 '19 at 21:44
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@Bee hit on one aspect, that it's possible Wuntch simply didn't know that Holt was gay.

However, given Wuntch's personality, I don't think that to be true. I think she either didn't care or didn't believe that he was gay. There is a lot of precedent in at least American culture of people ignoring other people's sexual orientation (and their gender and pronouns for that matter) for their own reasons, so it's not much of a stretch for Wuntch to do the same.

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  • But that's not what her reaction indicates, and he certainly should've been openly gay (see my comment on the question) – Gallifreyan Dec 19 '19 at 21:45
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Holt was better detective than Wuntch. He did realize that Wuntch was thinking she'll have a chance with him.
That's why he had to drink to build up courage to come out to her because he knew she ignored any "hints". And by hints I mean Holt talking about his sexuality. Which, if you know Holt, was saying "I couldn't be happier with my hay partner" with a stone face. And you know that even Jake can't read that man. And Jake is so good detective he made Holt "dad proud".

So, Holt was openly gay. Holt realized that Wuntch disregard that information for her own benefit ("Boooooneeeeee" to quote Rosa). Holt coming out wasn't "coming out" per se. He told Wuntch he won't have sex with AND made her realize she was a bad detective by not realising it on her own. And to me it also add their enmity. Holt hate that detective that is so bad is so high in the ranks. Wuntch hate Holt because he's the reminder of how bad she is.

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