I love where “New Girl” went in its second season. I think it was inspired for Nick and Jess to get together, and to have it be a messy, hesitant coupling, with both characters acting the way real people would after, respectively, their first kiss, first time sleeping together, and first “are we a couple?” discussion.
But I can’t help but think about two dangling plot threads, and how they’ll affect the show’s future. The first is from the second episode of the second season. Nick is warned by a man who he believes to be himself from the future that he will do something awful to Jess, and that he needs to apologize. Sadly, I couldn’t find the clip online, but Nick makes Jess an old fashioned and apologizes, though he hasn’t actually done anything wrong yet. (This is “New Girl” meets “Minority Report,” I suppose.)
As the Vulture recap states, “There’s something genuinely creepy about this — what is Nick going to do, and how bad is it going to be?” And therein lies the question – this would seem to portend a Nick/Jess break-up at some point (presuming they actually become a full-fledged “couple”), and it seems as though Nick is going to be to blame.
So many shows go through the will-they-or-won’t-they issues that, in a way, it will be frustrating to know that these two aren’t meant for the long run based on some “prophecy.” That said, the writers have done a fantastic job with pairing Nick and Jess in the first place, recognizing the characters’ chemistry and their faults and the ways in which they play off each other. If the relationship does fizzle, I imagine the show will still work, as it did this season while Schmidt and Cece went from couple to friends.
The other reason why doom may be on the horizon for Nick and Jess stems from the return of Fancyman. Jess had dated Dermot Mulroney‘s Fancyman character in season 1, and while on a “not date” with Nick, Fancyman (Russell) asks Nick and Jess to both write down what they want out of the other person. Again, the Vulture recap puts it best (and I wish I could find these clips online):
Russell asks Nick and Jess to write down definitions of their relationship but bolts once he looks at their answers. So here’s the question: Is it possible that they wrote totally contradictory things? The last five episodes have suggested that they’re both equally invested in each other; they’re just too nervous or too protective of the status quo to admit their feelings.
I’m really hoping that, at some future point, we find out what each wrote down on the card. In a perfect sitcom world, they’d each have written down the same thing, along the lines of “true love” or being each other’s lobster.
So – what does it all mean? Well, if I had to guess, following other sitcom tropes, I’d say that Nick and Jess are bound for a break-up or big fight at some point, just to advance the plot. And, because Nick is due for a major apology, I’d say that he’s the one likely responsible. Maybe he wrote something less enthusiastic on his card than Jess wrote on hers? It would make sense – she’s a creative writing teacher, and he’s just Julius Pepperwood from Chicago. Either way, I hope the writers don’t break these two up just for plot’s sake, but if and when the two do break up, at least the seeds were sown early on.