This week’s episode brought the whole gang back together with the arrival of Coach (Damon Wayans Jr), and, let’s be honest, was anyone really expecting that plot? Strip clubs, crying, getting drunk (we probably expected those last two), and Taye Diggs saying ‘rubber baby buggy bumpers’. All signs of a great episode.
It was nice to see some relationship development for Nick and Jess that didn’t segregate them from the group at all. Also nice to see that Schmidt is in a good place with them, and that Cece seems almost back to normal, if still slightly embittered. Coach’s unrecognition of Jess came as a bit of a surprise considering the whole singing “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” in a crowded restaurant in the pilot episode. Coach also seemed wildly changed from the character we first saw in the show. There was a hint of misogyny around his character that made for an amusing plot but some mixed feelings toward his character. The ending dampened those opinions, but only slightly. It’s nice to see him back but I’m personally hoping he doesn’t stick around for too long, maybe just long enough to coax Schmidt back into the loft.
Taye Diggs was a wonderful addition to the episode, who, voice aside, had us all wondering ‘can this guy really be for real?’ Well, as it turns out, no, and thank god for that. Stamping his foot on the bed and trying to splash Jess with imaginary water was just the straw that broke the handsome camel’s back, it seems. Luckily, it brought out that semi-mature side to Nick that we’d been missing this episode, that lead to a wonderfully staged punch and a lovely moment between Nick and Jess, watching the elevator take the out-cold Artie (strip club hat and all) out of sight.
This episode was definitely a plus for character development and amusement factor. We finally got to see Jess and Cece in their natural state again, up to their usual antics – ‘I will stall Nick, I am really good at this kind of thing’ straight to ‘Jess, I failed!’. It’s also clear the love is not gone between our resident best friends, Nick and Schmidt. Winston, once again, served as the background amusement episode, but he’s slowly getting the recognition he deserves on this show. Shame about no mention of Ferguson the cat! Here’s hoping the rest of the season continues on this good note.
Review Score: FOUR STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
New Girl airs in Australia on Channel Ten.