‘New Girl’ recap: Season 3, Episode 4, ‘The Captain’

 

Zooey Deschanel new girl captain
‘The Captain’ is the sex move that Shall Not Be Named.

So far this season, Nick and Jess are officially in a relationship, Schmidt has broken the hearts of CeCe and Elizabeth (not to mention his own) and Winston has become lonelier than ever. So as we start Episode Four, ‘The Captain,’ it stands to reason that the natural course of action is for Schmidt to go after Nick and Jess’s relationship and for Winston to get even more deeply involved with his cat, Ferguson.

Winston is, once again, on his own in this one — a dynamic that is getting old. The Winston Problem is the most notable and talked about issue that New Girl faces and, third season in, it’s still not solved. It’s clear the writers decided to embrace Winston’s “Cheese Stands Alone” status in the loft (and thus, the show), but I’m not sure that was the best route to take. Episode after episode, we find the same dynamic — everyone is involved in the larger plot but Winston. That being said, Lamorne Morris has done a good job so far, and his storyline this week (trying to get his cat laid) made for a number of easy but satisfying laughs. (“Guys, come on, our cats were just about to have sex,” being one of his best of the night.)

But even with The Winston Problem, “The Captain” is a stellar episode. It has all the things you need to swoon and laugh. And since swooning and laughing is all I want to do for the rest of my life, I’d call this a job well done.

Schmidt tries to break Nick and Jess up by playing on Nick’s discomfort with feelings and Jess’s naivete about sex. It works at first — Nick can’t get it up and Jess thinks the only way to turn him on is by performing a so-horrifying-we-don’t-know-what-it-is sex move called The Captain. But his dabbling only proves to bring them closer together as they realize what he is trying to do. It all ends in Nick beginning to indulge his feelings — and Jess learning to shut up for once.

Last season, Schmidt seemed to be growing into a mature and complicated person but this season, at least temporarily, he’s back to being a douchebag. While this does make him a bit harder to root for, it’s also a situation rife with Schmidt-isms:

“You know, my diploma says that I majored in Communications, but my heart says I majored in Nicholas Studies.”

“For a man whose midsection is basically mush, Nick has had a lot of sex. He’s pushed that mush all over town.”

“If someone were to blow on my nipples, I would positively scream.”

If Schmidt continues being Schmidt, there’s not much behavior we won’t accept from him.

As for Nick and Jess: Were they hotter last season when we all were rooting for them to just do it already? Absolutely. But are they still pretty great now? Yeah. Things have cooled down but, c’mon, they were never going to be able to maintain the sheer, unadulterated, so-hot-I-watched-it-on-repeat-at-least-17-times chemistry of their first stolen kiss in the hallway.

Instead, what we have is a storyline where Nick and Jess are in a healthy, sweet, adorable relationship that appears to make each of them a better person. And the writers do a good job of making it bizarre as hell, which is crucial to “New Girl” in general, and Nick and Jess in particular. Whereas most couples might go out to dinner and a movie, Jess tries to spice things up by reading an Indian Restaurant Menu in whispered tones, painting her face blue like Papa Smurf, and punching Nick in the face.

This is a quirky, crazy weird, super lovable couple and… I’m into it.

Bigs ups go to Jake Johnson for managing to make Nick’s emotional maturing not only un-cheesy but laugh-out-loud funny. (“I really like the instrument of the cello.”) Also, when he says things like, “I really like you, Jess,” I basically melt into a puddle on the goddamn floor. So bravo, “New Girl.” My husband will never live up to Nick Miller. Are you happy now?

What do you guys think? Am I the only one still bothered by The Winston Problem?

Grade: A- (under the condition that in future episodes they stop treating Winston like he’s a ghost that only animals can see)

Taylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist living in Los Angeles. Her first book, Forever, Interrupted, came out this summer. Follow her on Twitter @tjenkinsreid



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Local

De Blasio, Bratton defend city's efforts after Eric…

Mayor Bill de Blasio justified the city's response to the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who died while in police custody earlier this month.

National

PHOTO: New Zealand Heral uses wrong image to…

The New Zealand Herald made a terrible mistake of using the wrong image to illustrate the tragic death of Staff Sergeant Guy Boyland – a New Zealand-born Israeli soldier who…

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.