TV Review: “The New Girl”


Fox and everybody else is overusing the term “adorable” to describe Zooey Deschanel in New Girl, but then again, she’s pretty damn adorable. And that might be the ticket (and the magic) for this mostly romantic comedy. Fox has taken to calling Deschanel “adorkable” — and that works, too, because she plays a dorky but lovable optimist whose cad of a boyfriend cheats on her and sends her reeling out into the world, needing a new apartment and a lot of coddling/coaching.

Deschanel’s Jess is possibly the sweetest and most naive person you’ll meet, who loves to sing and see the good in the world. After the split, she moves in with three guys — two of whom believe it’s a terrible idea, but one, Schmidt (Max Greenfield), overrides everyone because Jess’ friends are models. Once in the apartment, mopey post-breakup Jess is tutored not only by Schmidt but also by Nick (Jake M. Johnson), who had his own horrible breakup six months ago and is not over it, and Coach (Damon Wayans Jr., who will be replaced in the second episode). Also helping Jess is Cece (Hannah Simone), one of her model friends.

Deschanel’s Jess is possibly the sweetest and most naive person you’ll meet, who loves to sing and see the good in the world. After the split, she moves in with three guys — two of whom believe it’s a terrible idea, but one, Schmidt (Max Greenfield), overrides everyone because Jess’ friends are models. Once in the apartment, mopey post-breakup Jess is tutored not only by Schmidt but also by Nick (Jake M. Johnson), who had his own horrible breakup six months ago and is not over it, and Coach (Damon Wayans Jr., who will be replaced in the second episode). Also helping Jess is Cece (Hannah Simone), one of her model friends.

Viewers will want Jess to make it in life because, well, you’d have to be pretty jaded not to. This might seem like a thin premise, but creator Elizabeth Meriwether manages to make the situations funny and lets Deschanel channel her charm — a winning combination. Although the pilot is centered on Jess watching Dirty Dancing multiple times to get over her split and the guys suffering her existence, there are more than enough laughs and enough potential to wager that future episodes will build on this little world.

Meriwether has a knack for shaking up the phrasing of jokes so they don’t feel rote. And she mixes the easier jokes (the guys call Schmidt a “douche” and make him put a dollar in a jar whenever he does anything to confirm this) with more subtle elements. For example, Jess’ social awkwardness is endearing when she gets a compliment like, “I like your glasses,” and her reply is, “They help me see” — without dropping an anvil on the line. You really do believe that Jess doesn’t understand come-ons or the sordid ideas of men, which is why her new roomies need to help her out.

Like most shows this fall, it’s difficult to judge where it is going based on the pilot, so every positive must be accorded an asterisk denoting that the whole thing could go sideways in the next few episodes. But a series like New Girl has that It factor — Deschanel — which makes it something to let grow.

By:Tim Goodman /Hollywood Reporter

Published by CityFella

Big city fella, Born and Raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lived in New York (a part time New Yorker) for three years . I have lived in the Sacramento area since 1993. When I first moved here, I hated it. Initially found the city too conservative for my tastes. A great place to raise children however too few options for adults . The city has grown up, there is much to do here. The city suffers from low self esteem in my opinion, locals have few positive words to say about their hometown. visitors and transplants are amazed at what they find here. From, the grand old homes in Alkali Flats, and the huge trees in midtown, there are many surprises in Sacramento. Theater is alive is this area . And finally ,there is a nightlife... In.downtown midtown, for the young and not so young. My Criticism is with local government. There is a shortage of visionaries in city hall. Sacramento has long relied on the state, feds and real estate for revenue. Like many cities in America,Downtown Sacramento was the hub of activity in the area. as the population moved to the suburbs and retail followed. The city has spent millions to revive downtown. Today less than ten thousand people live downtown. No one at city hall could connect the dots. Population-Retail. Business says Sacramento is challenging and many corporations have chosen to set up operations outside the cities limits. There is vision in the burbs. Sacramento has bones, there are many good pieces here, leaders seem unable or unwilling to put those pieces together into. Rant aside, I love it here. From the trees to the rivers. But its the people here that move me. Sacramento is one of the most integrated cities in America. I find I'm welcome everywhere. The spices work in this city of nearly 500,000 and for the most part these spices blend well together. From Ukrainians to Hispanics and a sizable gay community, all the spices seem to work well here. I frequently travel and occasionally I will venture into a city with huge racial borders, where its unsafe to visit after certain hours. I haven't found it here. I cant imagine living in a community where there is one hue or one spice. I love the big trees, Temple Coffee House, the Alhambra Safeway, Zelda's Pizza, Bicyclist in Midtown, The Mother Lode Saloon, Crest Theater, and the Rivers. I could go on and I might. Sacramento is home.

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