Gosh dang it, New Girl. Gosh dang it.
I know what you’re about to do and it’s going to ruin the show. Regular viewers of this season of the once hit Fox series would be remised to notice a running trend in the show. CeCe and Schmidt have finally moved out after preparing to do so for more than half of the season; Winston and Ally are set to tie the knot; and Regan and Nick are a happy couple. Or so it seems.
Like previous seasons that led up to the unspeakable act, Nick and Jess share a set of longing looks for one another. Story elements keep forcing them into each other’s arms. “Reasons” that the two should be together keep rearing their ugly heads. And I have had it.
I’m proud to admit I stopped watching New Girl at the first sign of Jess and Nick becoming a couple. It ruins the flow and dynamic of the series. Fox’s premiere Tuesday night sitcom has been a solid joke powerhouse for most of its run but, when it comes to pairing up characters, it does so without grace. For those that dropped out early on, Megan Fox joined the series as a Zooey Deschanel replacement due to the actress’s pregnancy. She may not look particularly funny but the writers used her dry sense of being as a deadly weapon of comedy. Her directness with a cast that is otherwise vague to each other was a great contrast. Better yet, they kept her on as she continued to date Nick. She’s a pharma rep so her job requires her to travel a lot – a decent way to have Fox (the actress; not the network) pop up every so often.
Jess herself began dating the supporting character Robbie. They’re literally perfect for one another. Sadly, it turns out they were related by blood. Funny story, yes. Mood killer, yes. No good came of the situation. For once, Jess was happy and not thinking about Nick. Then the worst thing that could happen happened.
I don’t necessarily have anything against the characters. Nick is the funny “everyman” of the series. He’s dumber than the others but equally relatable. Thanks to the decent writing, characters get a fair share of jokes which means Nick is no funnier than his roommates. And Jess isn’t any worse. She has her moments of clarity, hilarity and whatever’s in between. But the show is pushing them towards an inevitable conclusion that is more than cliché. It’s predictable; rote, free of any sort of creativity. If this really is the final season of New Girl, then please – Elizabeth Meriwether – don’t make it end the way it probably is going to. Sure, there’s nothing we can do about it now, but I pray this show ends on better than its predecessors have.
Friends had Ross and Rachel; Community had Britta and Jeff; How I Met Your Mother had Ted, Robin and – for some reason – Barney. And New Girl has Jess and Nick. Each one of those shows has an exceptional cast doling out historic lines of comedy in episodes that changed the game for the genre. But one area that they didn’t improve on is love and relationships. There are enough episodes in Friends alone with A-plots centered only on Ross and Rachel to make up two entire seasons of the show. HIMYM’s love triangle came in late – forcefully – leaving zero impact on the series as a whole, and damaging characters in the long run.
New Girl is a good show when it does its classic character interplay. When it pairs Jess with Nick, every single inch of the sitcom slows down. I like them; really. But, dang it guys. Let Nick be happy with Regan. Let Jess find someone. Let’s not settle with crappy storylines.
Whatever happens to New Girl at the end of this season, I’m almost positive I won’t like it.