Sunday, February 10, 2013

New Girl 2.15: "Cooler"

"Hey, Schmidt, your butt just violated the Hawley-Smoot Tariff Act!”
- Jess

So the event at the end of this episode, the rather epic kiss between Nick and Jess (sorry…spoiler alert) didn’t leave me quite as elated as it should have, mostly because I know that it doesn’t stick, and Nick and Jess won’t actually get their act together until the end of this season at the earliest. That’s what I get for being behind on the blog, I suppose. You get my grumpy, I already kind of know what happens next impression. That being said, even though the impact of that final moment was kind of ruined for me, I still enjoyed the return of True American. I love that the “New Girl” roommates are such politics/American history nerds. And that they turned it into a drinking game. Folks after my own heart they are (except for the drinking aspect of it all…I’m not a teetotaler, but I’m not into drinking games, either…but if I was, it would totally be something nerdy like True American). I also liked that at the end of the episode, the big romantic moment was cut with some pretty bizarre humor, as only “New Girl” can do.

There’s a pretty clear division in this episode between the first half, where they guys are all trying to get back their confidence with women, and the second half, which is just basically a raucous game of True American. The second half is really the superior half, because True American is still fresh enough to be really funny and clever and entertaining to watch. The fact that the first half kicks off with Schmidt announcing to the rest of the roommates that he is no longer satisfied by masturbation. Yep, because that’s just the sort of information you want to know about your roommate! Schmidt believes this means that he’s sufficiently over Cece to, you know, actually have sex with a woman again, and he wants to have a boys night out with Winston and Nick. This seems especially appropriate since all three are single and kind of unhappy about it. Jess wants to join and play wingwoman, but Nick puts the kibosh on that. He says Jess is his “cooler.” Whenever he finds himself in a romantic situation, she somehow manages to make it end prematurely.

So the guys go out for their night of debauchery, and Jess is left at home alone. She’s super bored and just spends the whole time putting together costumes and acting out strange scenarios. Maybe it’s the only child in me, but I found this rather bizarre and one of the rare times where the creative team and I don’t share a brain. I’m perfectly happy spending an evening in front of the TV or the computer when I don’t have plans. I don’t have trouble finding ways to be entertained. But Jess hears a noise at the apartment door, and it really freaks her out. It freaks her out so badly that she starts calling everybody she can think of for help, starting with Sam, then Cece, then finally Nick.

Meanwhile, the guys all find themselves at the bar, because Nick got them thrown out of, as Schmidt calls it “the discotheque.” Nick’s been wearing a woman’s trench coat that was accidentally delivered to the loft (he says it gives him extra confidence), and I guess it freaked out the bouncer. The guys are pretty desperate, and Nick and Schmidt both pounce on the same attractive woman sitting at the bar. Her name is Holly. Even though they’re bot making asses of themselves, Holly for some reason doesn’t send Schmidt and Nick packing. Winston, meanwhile, starts chatting with a woman named Daisy. Because she appears to be engaged, Winston is pretty chill with her instead of being overly desperate like usual. Holly seems to especially like desperate men, and Nick’s sob story of being dumped recently is working on her until he gets Jess’ call about the intruder. Once Jess calls, the night appears to be over.

The whole gang, including Holly and Daisy, however, show up at the loft, and Jess almost attacks them, thinking they’re the intruders. Jess admits that she really was Nick’s cooler in this instance, and in an attempt to make things right, she suggests a game of strip True American. I love how even though the rules are never really explained on the show, and the game seems extremely complex, newbies like Holly and Daisy (and our good old pal the Fancyman last season) can just dive right in. It’s basically jumping around on furniture and making American history geek references and tossing beer cans. And taking clothes off, in this particular instance. Trying to raise the stakes and get Nick his time with Holly, Jess invents a rule that would require two of the players to go into another room and kiss. Instead of Holly being the one Nick has to kiss, though, it turns out to be Jess. And this totally freaks Nick out, to the extent that he eventually climbs out the window to try and avoid it. Jess is kind of confused about why Nick is so adamantly refusing to kiss her, and Nick has a bit of a revealing moment when he says “not like this.” Sam is also at the apartment by that point, having gotten Jess’ message about the intruder. He thinks strip True American is the funniest idea ever, which is pretty chill of him. While all this is going on, Daisy reveals to Winston that she isn’t actually engaged (the ring was a fake so guys will leave her alone), and after a brief freak-out, Winston gets it together enough to make out with her.

Later that night, after everyone has gone home, Jess and Nick hear the scratching at the door again. It turns out to actually be a dog, owned by a neighbor named Beth, who was the intended recipient of Nick’s trench coat. She’s pretty disgusted to see Nick wearing her coat, and she takes it away from him. Even though he doesn’t have his security blanket trench coat anymore, Nick still somehow gets up the courage to kiss Jess the way he really wanted to kiss her. And quite a kiss it is. Miller’s got moves, y’all. After the kiss, Jess is just standing there, trying to figure out what this all means, when Sam steps out of Jess’ bedroom holding her Nick doll (yeah, she made a Nick doll to talk to while all the guys were out at the bar…more creepy than endearing, I think). It’s creeping her out, and he wants her to get rid of it. Jess agrees, and the tension breaks…for now. At the expense of the Nick doll, whose head was made of a melon that is now smashed on the floor.

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