In the New Girl season 2 finale, we go to Cece’s wedding with the gang. Vital questions are answered and new ones posed, and basically, we end up feeling ALL THE FEELINGS! Plus, there’s a hostile badger and a surprise guest star (not the badger). Shall we?
Miami Vice called … It’s almost showtime. Everyone is dressed for Cece’s wedding – Jess in a gorgeous sky-blue sari and the guys in their best suits. Sort of. Nick is rocking a v-neck and some kind of rumpled linen leisure suit from 1986. All he is missing is a Panama hat and some Raybans. Jess wants a group pic before they leave so they pose before the Iron Curtain door. (Schmidt: “Winston, please. Your belly is on my hip!”) Jess calls her dad (Rob Reiner) over to take the picture. Remember, he is camped out on an air mattress in the hallway from the last episode because he doesn’t want any funny business going on between Nick and Jess. They pose for the picture but Daddy Bob is not happy with how snuggly Nick and Jess are. He asks Nick to take a step to the right. And then another. And another. “Until you get in the hallway. And then once you’re in the hallway, go directly to the Chinatown trashcan where you got that suit.” Nick: “There’s nothing wrong with this suit! I wore this to my high school graduation. I look very handsome! I look like I’m on Miami Vice!”
Wedding Crashers: Cut to the wedding venue. Nick is wearing one of Schmidt’s castoff suits (“He said if I could get it over my thighs, he didn’t want it.”) Jess says she hopes he isn’t doing all this because of what her dad said. She doesn’t think Nick is an unemployable, alcoholic bummer. Or a child. It’s weird, but this line of reassurance is not working on Nick. “Bob said that about me?” Aw, he’s so hurt. He wants all dads to like him. Jess says the point is, they’re at a wedding together. She looks genuinely happy. He can’t help but smile back at her as she fixes his tie. Nick: “It’s nice, right? You look great.” Two minutes into the show and already they are dangerously close to exceeding the Adorable Quotient. Jess leaves to go find Cece but not before she thumps her chest twice, kisses her fingers, and throws them up in farewell. Nick giggles and returns the gesture. “I guess we’re doing this now.” OMG SO ADORABLE.
– Elizabeth telling Schmidt that the wedding ceremony lasts for three hours so he should go pee. She remembers that he has a weak bladder.
– Winston getting the vapors when he spots Bucky the Badger, the University of Wisconsin mascot, being checked into the hotel. “Bucky cool!”
Damn It Feels Good To Be A Prankster: Schmidt bumbles into the room where Cece is getting ready. He thought it was the bathroom. Their eyes meet for a second and it’s like everything else stops. Something unspoken passes between them, but then Jess is kicking Schmidt out.
However. Schmidt is convinced that Cece wants to call off the wedding. She clearly sent him a mental cry for help. He tells the guys, who are taken aback. Nick: “What’d Jess say?” Schmidt: “Well, Jess didn’t hear it. She told me with her eyes.” Nick: “Oh, so nothing happened.” Winston: “Cool. So, she’s marrying Shivrang.” No, no she is NOT. Schmidt is adamant. He knows Cece, and he knows what she was trying to tell him. Jess says no way. She knows Cece loves Shivrang, and she knows Cece better than Schmidt. Schmidt: “False. When you’ve had sexual congress with someone, and you’ve peered into their soul at the exact moment of fulfillment …” Ewwwww. That’s it. Jess has had enough of this nonsense. She is in management mode now. (Anyone notice how clutch Jess is in these kinds of situations? Nick’s dad’s funeral, Cece’s maid of honor extraordinaire – she’s a really good bud. OK, things get messy, but wouldn’t you love to have a friend like her?) Jess: “Schmidt, listen up and listen good. You are not to talk to Cece, you are not to look at Cece, and you are not to have eye conversations with Cece. Or I will bust you. Hard.” Then she turns to Nick. “And later, I’m gonna bust you hard.” Nick: “Yeah, you are. Goodnight, nurse. I’ve been naughty!” Aaaaaand, we’re back to being adorable.
Schmidt and Winston don’t find that as adorable as I do. Schmidt: “Bros, ever before the ho.” Nick: “Anyone have a jar?” Schmidt really wants them to help him sabotage this wedding. Winston demurs. As much as he loves pranks, he is finally ready to face the fact that he sucks at them. It’s time for him to grow up. Schmidt agrees, but … “What about today, just today – you give me full-on crazy?” Winston cannot resist. Nick wants no part of this. He doesn’t want to upset Jess. “Jess asked us not to, so we are going to enjoy Cece’s wedding like adults. So, GOODNIGHT NURSE!” Um, what? “Sorry for saying that! I’m all turned around!” Alrighty then.
Winston and Schmidt are so sabotaging this thing. (Fact: I would watch a spin off prank show starring these two. I would watch it a lot.)
Horsing Around: Shivrang rides in on a white horse. Literally. He is accompanied by drumming and dancing relatives. Nick and Jess are laughing and cuddling together and being very couple-y, but then Nick looks over his shoulder and notices Schmidt being very intense. He walks over (holding Jess’ purse!) and tells Elizabeth he needs to talk to Schmidt. He tells Schmidt that he wants him to call off whatever the hell it is he is planning on doing. Schmidt: “What are you doing? What has happened to you? You changed your suit, you’re carrying her purse, you’re wearing deodorant – under both arms. Why are you trying so hard, man? Either Jess wants the real you, or she don’t.” Let’s just skate past the part where the real Nick apparently does not wear deodorant under both arms. Schmidt: “The real Nick would help me sabo this wedding?” Nick: “Is sabo short for sabotage?” Schmidt is super hurt. Nick knows damn well what sabo stands for. Why is he doing this? Nick: “You’re right. I was being mean. I was bullying you to get dominance in this moment.” I. Love. Them.
Nick asks Schmidt to please call it off. Schmidt agrees. But then the second Nick leaves, Schmidt calls Winston. “NOW!” Winston, who is hiding in the bushes with an airhorn, lets loose with a blast that scares Shivrang’s horse. The horse rears up and then takes off as a terrified Shivrang calls out, “My testicles!” Jess: “Shivrang, hold on! DON’T GET ON THE HIGHWAY!”
Cotton Eyed Joe: Jess is convinced Schmidt had something to do with the horse thing. He denies it. The ceremony begins and Cece enters looking radiant, if a little crazy around the eyes. Then suddenly the music switches to Cotton Eyed Joe. The guests are puzzled and Jess turns accusingly to Schmidt, who is dancing nonchalantly. Jess: “Who are you working with?” Schmidt keeps dancing and singing along. The best part is his stare down with Jess where he gets in her face and ends with a defiant: “Cotton. Eyed. Joe.”
Nick finds Winston in the back and tells him to cut this crap out. Winston chuckles maniacally and says, “What’s done is done, Nicholas. I couldn’t stop it if I wanted to.” At that moment, Jess storms in and assumes that Nick is part of the conspiracy to ruin the wedding. Winston shouts, “PRANKS!” and scampers off. Jess is so mad. “Of course. Of course you were scheming with Schmidt.” Nick says he didn’t do anything. Jess: “Do you think Schmidt and Winston would be smart enough to duct tape the soundboard? That’s brilliant!” So, at least she thinks he’s smart. Jess: “Plus, we both know that this is your CD.” Quick pop to a scene of the two of them in Nick’s car listening to Cotton Eyed Joe while Nick fist-pumps determinedly. This is hilariously unexplained. Nick says the guys must have stolen the CD from his car, but Jess doesn’t believe him. “You’re fist-pumping right now!” He is. Dammit. It’s just so catchy! Now Jess is more hurt than mad. She thought she could count on him. Nick can’t believe she thinks he would do something like this at her best friend’s wedding. Jess says it’s exactly the kind of thing he would do. “A stupid, childish prank.” Now Nick is hurt. And he’s leaving. Nick: “You’re right, I’m a child.”
In the hallway, Nick finds Tweedledum and Tweedledee congratulating themselves on some great sabo. Schmidt is talking about Phase 3. You know what? Nick is in. Screw it.
Duct And Cover: The ceremony is back on track and Jess is watching from the audience. Schmidt sidles up to her and whispers urgently that things have gone too far and “it’s bad. It’s really bad.” Jess follows him out to the hallway and demands that he tell her everything. Jess: “Or so help me God, I will mess up your hair.” Gasp. “Your precious hair.” Fine. Winston is in the air ducts with a badger. So is Nick.
Cut to Winston and Nick, crawling Oceans 11 style through the air ducts with Bucky the Badger in a cage. Winston says the priest will never know what hit him. Nick: “Wait, that’s the plan? You’re going to drop a badger on a priest? That can’t be the plan, man!”
Jess is willfully messing with Schmidt’s ‘do while she interrogates him for more details. Schmidt says that when Nick got involved it just got too big. What? So he wasn’t involved in the first place? Schmidt: “No, he said no. He said ‘Jess means too much to me’ or some crapola like that.” Jess starts calling Nick. Schmidt says she can’t do that. “He’s in the DUCTS! The DUCTS!”
Nick’s phone goes off, and he and Winston get in a scuffle over it. During said scuffle, Winston kicks over Bucky’s cage and Bucky escapes. Girly Nick-screams ensue.
Jess says she’s going up there. Schmidt is relieved, actually, because he, for one, does NOT want to go into the ducts. “I’m the type of guy who likes to enjoy the AC, not see how the sausage is made.” He’s happy to give Jess a boost, though.
Nick and Winston are trying unsuccessfully to find Bucky, and they seem to have lost each other. Nick: “Winston?” Winston: “Nick, where are you? Marco?” Nick: “Polo. I DON’T WANT TO PLAY THAT.” Jess is now in the ducts as well, and she grabs Nick’s foot. More screaming. Nick wants to know what Jess is doing there. She says she knows he didn’t plan the sabotage and that he’s doing this to get back at her, but she’s asking him, please, not to do it. Nick: “It’s not about the sabotage, okay? It’s about the fact that you think I’m going to screw up everything I touch.” Jess says, no, she doesn’t. Nick says this is where he belongs. With Winston and a badger. It’s pretty clear that Nick is the one who thinks he’s going to screw up everything he touches. Oh, Nick.
Nick and Jess are having a whispered talk. Nick: “Is this what you wanted your life to be? Is this how you wanted to enjoy your best friend’s wedding?” Jess: “Nick, no. Stop that.” Nick: “I am not a healthy person.” Jess: “Yeah, I know. I know, Nick.” Nick: “Oh, you do? So a part of you agrees with your dad.” Oh, you guys. His face when he says that. Heartbreaking. Nick: “Tell me that there isn’t a small part of you that’s scared that I’m too much of a mess. That this thing is a mistake. You and me. Just admit it, Jess.” Jess looks at him. She’s thinking about it. Jess: “Yes, there is a small part.” Nick: “Yeah.” He looks sad and resigned. Jess starts to say something else, but then the duct gives way and Nick, Jess, and Bucky all fall into the wedding hall. They land in a heap of orange silk.
Nick makes eye contact with Jess’ dad, who shakes his head in disgust. But then …
“SOMETHING TOUCHED MY LEG!” Bob leaps up and runs from the room. Bucky the Badger is on the loose.
Let’s Call The Whole Thing Off: Jess is trying to settle everyone down. She says there is indeed a badger loose, but her best people are on it. Nick takes the cue and hits the floor, shouting for Schmidt to help. My favorite part of this is Winston feeding them intel from his eagle-eye vantage point: “He’s in the ninth row. He’s headed north!”
Jess tries to get the ceremony back on track but Cece says she doesn’t have to fix this. Cece says she can’t do this. It’s not what she wants. She wants to be with someone else. She’s looking at Schmidt when she says it. He raises his eyebrows and looks over at Elizabeth, who looks sad. (Nooooooooo! I love Elizabeth! DON’T YOU HURT HER, SHOW.) Cece tells Shivrang she feels terrible. Shivrang is actually relieved. As it turns out, he wants to be with someone else, too. Her name is Elaine. Elaine (Taylor Swift!) stands up and declares that she’s loved “Shivvy” since the first grade. Shivrang says he wants to marry her. In a Presbyterian church! Elaine asks if he’ll take her away from all this madness. “And you are NOT too short for me, I don’t care what your mother says!” Shivrang runs to her, sweeps her into his arms, and carries her from the hall. Awwwww.
Cece: “I feel slightly rejected.” Jess: “You are slightly rejected.” Truth. Cece feels good about it, though, and Jess is glad.
As the guests leave the hall, Nick finds Jess. She wants to know if he’s okay. From the fall and from what they talked about. He is, he says. He doesn’t look it, though. Nick: “Hey, Jess, it’s not that big of a deal. I mean, we tried. You might be right about your fears, you know?” His rueful smile hurts to look at. Jess: “Just say it.” Nick: “I think we should call it, you know? It’s not like we’re in love or anything. We had one night.” His voice sort of breaks on the word “night” and you can hear his breath catching in his chest. God. These two! Jess is smiling at him sadly. Then she takes a breath and makes up her mind. Jess: “Okay. Let’s call it. I think … that feels good to me. Does that feel good to you?” Her eyes are teary. Nick nods. Her chin trembles a little bit, but she gives him a little smile and then hurries away.
Elsewhere, Elizabeth is insisting that Schmidt must have feelings for Cece. He tried to break up her wedding for her! Schmidt says he did it purely out of friendship. He would have been equally happy to break up her tax audit. Cece come over. It’s awkward. Elizabeth asks if she was talking about Schmidt. Cece admits she was. Elizabeth asks Schmidt to choose. Cece says Elizabeth is right, he has to choose. Schmidt is unprepared for this. He tries to distract them. “I just got this Coldplay bootleg from Rotterdam. What if we just made some pasta and really listened to it?” Elizabeth: “Are you in love with her or are you in love with me?” Schmidt bolts.
Where Do We Come From, Where Do We Go? Nick has found his way to the bar. He’s drinking a beer. Winston emerges from the air duct with a fairly serious badger bite. Nick, however, is too distracted to pay much attention to him. Winston wants to know what happened to Jess. Nick: “We called it. And she left. Yeah, we called it off. So, now I’m gonna drink, because that’s my move.” Winston gives him a knowing look. “That was also your dad’s move. Yeah, when things get messy, you just run away.” Nick looks at him. Winston: “But you know there are other moves.” Nick stares at him for a second and then shakes his head. Winston: “Go!” Nick thanks him and takes off. Then Winston politely asks the bartender to call an ambulance because he’s about to bleed out. Oh, Winston. I love you, boo.
Nick rushes outside to catch Jess, who is waiting by the car. She’s been crying. Jess: “Look. I know you think we should call it. But I don’t want to give up on this, even if we don’t know what this is.” Nick is staring at her, out of breath. Jess: “I want to uncall it. Please can we uncall it?” Her eyes are huge and filled with tears. “And before you say no …don’t say no.” She’s adamant and vulnerable and hopeful. Nick doesn’t say anything. He just strides over to her and kisses her. Hard. She’s kissing him back, just as hard, but also kind of giggling with happiness and relief. When they break apart, Nick asks for the keys. Jess asks where they’re going. Nick: “I don’t know. Where do we come from? Where do we go?” Jess throws her head back and laughs. It’s a joyful sound. Nick: “Yeah, that was Cotton Eyed Joe, wasn’t it?” They get in the car. “I Always Knew” by The Vaccines plays as they pull away. It doesn’t really matter where they are going. They’re together. Jess tells him to take a left, but Nick says he’s going to take three rights. It’s slower his way.
What did you think, friends? Was it everything you thought it would be? What do you hope happens in season 3?
Nanea Hoffman is the founder of Sweatpants & Coffee. She loves turtle faces and would use hair chutney if she could find any.