New Girl recap: Schmidt Happens

Jess must summon the courage to bring about closure with her old boyfriend, and returning roommate Winston tricks Schmidt out of the best room in the house
Ep. 02 | Aired Sep 27, 2011

PRIMAL SCREAM Jess embraced her inner animal to regain power from her ex (only after tearing his house up, of course)

Greg Gayne/Fox

I'm really interested where this show is going to stand in tomorrow's ratings -- and even more interested in how it will fare next week. After its night-winning premiere, will New Girl show be able to keep up its momentum? Will it successfully continue trading on Zooey Deschanel's super-cuteness without being a one-trick pony? I am a Deschanel fan, but even the extra-adorable expanded credit sequence seemed a bit twee to me. If this is the way the show is trending, I think Deschanel might literally be skipping around the country singing theme songs to fans and pouring syrup down their throats by season's end. Then again, I kind of like syrup...

The episode centered on Jess's reluctance to retrieve her belongings from her cheating ex Spencer. After much urging by Nick, Jess's hand was forced when she accidentally threw a basketball into the guys' TV set (only after two-hand bouncing the ball and singing, "Defense! Defense! Got to have the defense, wah wahhhhhh"). The only answer was to call honey-haired Spencer, who was still in possession of her TV. Long story short, in a scene awesomely foreshadowed by Blind Melon's tap dancing Bee Girl song "No Rain," Jess ended up driving her ex and his new girlfriend to the airport and crying Hills-level mascara tears while they sang "Bust a Move" at the top of their lungs. Nothing will take a girl's confidence down a peg like the dope rhymes of Young MC.

Since a pawn store heist proved impractical (see Drive for more proof to that end), this week's Jesson -- Jess lesson -- was how to be a fighter and overcome her own personal kryptonite. (Then again, to anyone but Jess, Spencer is almost remarkable in how unimpressive he is, prompting Nick to remark at first glance, "That's the wizard? He's wearing a scrunchy," and Schmidt to say, "I just kind of assumed he'd have a handlebar mustache.") Still, for every moment she wavered, her guys were there to back her up -- in whimsical headwear, no less. In the end, Jess proved her mettle, telling Spencer and his mellifluous hair to take a hike and proclaiming her love for her newfound friends.  And so, they were back in the apartment, watching their recovered, if slightly battered, TV. I'm beginning to think television may be these kids' cheesecake. Sign o' the times...

NEXT: Schmidt -- Love him or leave him?

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