We've been so focused on the Nick/Jess relationship lately that we've forgotten the equally important relationship between Schmidt and Nick. Thankfully, Schmidt rectified that in "Tinfinity" with his celebration of their tenth anniversary of living together and threw one hell of a party. We only wish we'd had a chance to see more of the Paper and Wood parties as well. Our major quibbles with the episode involved the way they made Jax such an annoying weepy mess and the lack of Winston in general (yes, we sound like a broken record... for those people who even remember what records are). They could have done the Jax thing in a less over-the-top way and it would have been fine. And we'd say mazel tov to Cece and Shivrang, but we know that would break Schmidt to pieces.
There was no way "Table 34" was going to live up to the double whammy of last week's kiss and a new game of True American, but it didn't entirely disappoint, either. And since Schmidt at an Indian marriage convention was far less racist (though still pretty racist) than we would have feared, we're considering the whole thing a win.
"A Father's Love" just felt like an off episode after some great outings. Not to totally fault Dennis Farina as Nick's cantankerous con man father, because he seems like perfect casting to play one of Nick's parental units, but he does bring a certain gravitas to the otherwise light and frothy show. So the episode went for more of an emotional take, instead of stupid comedy, which isn't an entirely bad thing if the B plot is up to snuff but, well, it wasn't. The crazy win-back-Cece capers with Schmidt and Robbie were fun for a second, but their act quickly wore thin. If not for Schmidt's muttered threats on Robbie's life, we'd have tuned out entirely. Still, there were a few redeemable moments, though we'd probably never play Feel the Cup with these people.
"Cabin" was such a bittersweet episode. On the one hand, it was pretty entertaining, had some pseudo-touching friendship and relationship moments and even managed to give Winston something to do. On the other hand, it seems to be the end of Olivia Munn's arc. Can we pray for the return of Angie in Season 3? I know everyone wants Nick and Jess together, but watching him uncomfortably ride on the back of her motorcycle and try to shoot guns was just a good time. Much better than scardey-cat Nick who is trying to prove he's a brave boy. Anyway, here's why we liked trekking with these friends to the cabin in the woods and to the 'hood.
"Bathtub" was another largely solid outing for New Girl, and we're totally not just saying that because Olivia Munn started guesting as a bad girl stripper who has the hots for Nick. We're also saying it because Jess and Winston finally had something to do together besides bond over PMS. And while it wasn't perfect, and the meth head stuff was admittedly pretty dumb, there were some fun moments in there, and we finally got the age-old boxers or briefs question answered.
The "Menzies" episode was a bit like riding an emotional rollercoaster, the problem being that the laughter peaked and waned depending on the storyline. The stuff with CeCe was great, Nick and the old man was fantastic, Schmidt's new boss has some potential that we hope to see play out over her two additional episodes and we're thrilled that Jess got a job. But there were jokes that fell flat and mostly we'd just be grateful to never hear any one of the roommates mention PMS again.
The fact that Jess had an inroad with models might have been the reason she was brought into the apartment with the guys in the first place, but seeing her interact with them just makes us sad. And not even in a funny sad sort of way. That said, "Models" still managed to be a mostly entertaining episode -- surprisingly enough -- and there was just the right amount of Schmidt.
Hey, this week Winston and Jess actually exchanged one whole line of dialogue, and technically Winston had mind sex with her... not exactly what we had in mind when we asked for more interaction between them, but it's something, right? But the rest of "Fluffer" fell flat, mostly because of Winston, and much as it pains us to admit it, Schmidt. And we can't help but wonder if the Romney camp paid for some product placement, what with all the talk about how he's a great dad with great hair. Here's what worked, and what didn't this week:
Last night, New Girl returned for Season 2 with two new episodes, "Re-Launch" and "Katie," to mixed results. While I laughed a bunch at "Re-Launch," it was primarily because the roomies were all together; in the second episode, they split apart and that's where the trouble started. In the first, everyone rallied around Schmidt (who had just gotten his penis cast off) and Jess (who had just lost her teaching job) and the weird entangled moments were great. While in "Katie," the storylines about future Nick and about Jess trying to juggle multiple men had their moments, but the whole thing about Winston's family visiting, and Schmidt's offensive behavior towards them, was just plain terrible. Still, there was more good than bad overall.
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