Last week’s New Girl seemed to suggest that Schmidt was back on track, with the wind at his back, and that he had finally gotten through the difficulties of the last few months. Has that momentum sustained itself? Yes, it has. Schmidt is completely back on form this episode, with his trademark mix of confident douchiness and casual Yiddish manifesting itself in what might be the apotheosis of all Schmidt plots to date. While it’s not the emotional center of the episode, I wanted to start off by talking about it because I think the foundations of the trajectory that the show is setting up for the characters in the tail half of this season are being built right here.
Schmidt’s back on the hunt for a woman again, and thinks he has a candidate in a Hebrew teacher at the local rabbinical school. He intends on surprising her at the bar mitzvah of a child he doesn’t know, and using his Jewish charms to win her over, employing Nick as his wing-man in the process. All told it’s the ultimate Schmidt plot, incorporating bizarre behavior from Nick, an unhinged woman, and Jon Lovitz (fresh from those The Crow casting rumors). He gets to run around, almost get involved in a punch up, and wear a yarmulke for the vast majority of the episode – looking much better than Nick who wears his like a tiny bobble hat, perched atop his head like snow on a mountain peak – what more can one ask for? Well, how about a potential reunion with Cece?
OK, OK, maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves here. I’ll just state the facts of Coach and Cece’s story as they are and we’ll try and extrapolate what we think will happen this season and how it relates to Schmidt. It all starts with Winston and Bertie. She’s holding a soup dinner at her apartment, and wants to invite the entire gang. Schmidt can’t go because he’s chasing a Hebrew teacher, and Nick can’t go because he’s Schmidt’s wing-man and needs to be distracted from meeting Jess’ sister (more on that later). Coach and Cece are both free but haven’t really interacted since they hooked up a few episodes ago. Cece ignored Coach’s first text afterwards, and they’ve been awkward ever since, so what has essentially become a double date with Winston and Bertie isn’t ideal for them. After clearing the air, sort-of ruining Bertie’s meal, and an abortive making-out session, Coach and Cece agree to give up on whatever it is they never really had in the first place. So Cece is single and completely unattached.
When Schmidt fails to get with the Hebrew teacher – a long story involving Nick and an old lady – he is also single and completely unattached. For the first time in ages, Cece and Schmidt are both single, both completely unattached, and have basically made peace with each other (see “Prince”). To provide a little more context, we’re currently sixteen episodes into what is going to be a 23 episode season, so there’s only six episodes left. That’s two hours of New Girl. We’re in the end-zone, basically.