New Girl 4.02 “Dice” Review: Darn Tootin’ Fun

24 Sep

Jess is optimistic to the point of gullible at times and while Nick is New Girl’s grumpy cynic, it is Schmidt who has responded to a broken heart by closing himself off to the possibility of love. Schmidt has no problems getting laid and Dice, a new dating app (it’s like Tinder) aids the briefest of connections. Schmidt and Jess are friends despite being so diametrically opposed when it comes to pretty much everything and as with the season 1 episode “Control” this proves to bring out their best and worst.

New Girl 4.02 diceThe balance of smut and sweet that New Girl excels at is well represented in how Jess and Schmidt view dating; Jess thinks dating should lead to love or a relationship and that’s far from the point in Schmidt’s opinion. What is clear from both the cold opens of season 4 is Jess doesn’t always see the sexual innuendo in the statements she makes and once again I am impressed that a gag like “Darn Tootin’ Fun” and its acronym didn’t get flagged by Standards and Practices. Despite Schmidt telling Jess that she isn’t ready for Dice, Jess goes ahead and sets up an account and a date. Suffice to say her first attempt doesn’t go well and she ends up back at the apartment of a dude who has a braided beardy tail and the most incredible wolfie sweater. Jess needs Schmidt’s expertise to navigate these choppy dating waters and he lets her know he’ll do it in typically dramatic Schmidt fashion.

Not one to do anything by halves, Schmidt has a whole presentation set up in the bar (which is totes weird in the morning FYI) involving the buzzer from Taboo, stationary Jess isn’t suppose to use and a big welcome sign. He could set up his own workshop. Schmidt runs through multiple scenarios that all include the observation that the person in question is probably a pervert and he is appalled by Jess’ “Hubba hubba, mama in troubu” reaction to one of the profile photos. Schmidt sets up 10 dates for Jess and despite her protests that she’s wearing her lounge around underwear she undertakes the main part of Schmidt’s Dice tutorial. This is like speed dating in multiple locations, but just as disposable in the end even if Jess doesn’t have the temperament to make a swift exit. Enter Schmidt and all the excuses to ditch a date.

In the past Jess has helped Schmidt loosen up, even if this went to extremes as there is no moderation or middle ground for Schmidt. In just two episodes this season already feels more cohesive than last year thanks to the return to form of Schmidt; he still says awful things about how he doesn’t care about hurting people’s feelings, but this is far from the ‘evil’ bizarro version from last season. He’s a douche, but he is still capable of semi-sweet sentiments like telling Jess that she’s the best girl on Dice (he also refers to her as pie and the prize which should lead to jar donations).

Jess cuts the last date she is on short because of the living close to date location warning sign (pervert) and this whole experience has left her feeling sad as she’d developed a rapport with this last guy. With such disposable dating and just about any reason to shut an interaction down how are you ever supposed to find love? Schmidt finds this preposition confusing as “the point of dating is just to keep on dating and never stop” not to fall in love and have a relationship. Jess finds this whole thing perplexing as Schmidt might be missing out on a really great woman as he jumps from one to another without any consideration of what this could become. Despite his assertion that he wants to go through life this way Schmidt calls up the girl from the morning and when he tries to ask her out for coffee after they’ve hooked up she tells him that she doesn’t think he understands Dice. Burn. Side note – now that Nick and Schmidt are sharing a room where does Nick sleep when Schmidt hooks up? The Jess influence has not paid off for Schmidt and Jess quickly learns that she should have called it quits with date number 10 when he reveals he is a comedy magician and she is stuck watching his terrible tricks and hearing his crappy jokes. Where is Schmidt when she needs him? Dating apps might have made getting a date easier, but everything else is still as hit and miss as before.

New Girl is a network show so a getting stoned plot is going to be far more limited than a show like Broad City on Comedy Central, so when Nick suggests they get high before Winston becomes an official cop it’s going to include caveats (statements like not doing drugs again) and only coming in food form. What this storyline does is gives another opportunity to see all the social awkwardness from Winston and a fun dynamic between Cece, Coach and Nick. Until last season Nick and Cece didn’t have all that many interactions, but last year it became apparent how much they are alike and working in the bar not only gives an organic way to incorporate the only character who doesn’t live in the loft, but it revealed their similarities. On this occasion what they share is getting stoned and they play teacher to Coach who hasn’t got high before. Cece is pretty chilled out, while Nick is rather obnoxious playing the expert card and constantly showing off how good he is at getting stoned.

Nick isn’t that great at being stoned and I wonder how often he has done it – although the college flashbacks would suggest quite a lot – or maybe it’s just because he wants to show off to Coach. Regardless he does get the funniest gag in this subplot as he tells Winston multiple times that they’ll go to this party and Jake Johnson delivers gibberish like no other. Nick’s super awesome plan to not get detected does not pan out and they end up in the closet after kicking over the barbecue and life chats with a dog. Winston gets to earn cool points and a new nickname from his police academy colleagues by freaking his friends the fuck out and even though it’s ‘Toilet’ he’s pretty thrilled. It’s all somewhat cartoonish and while it didn’t hit all the beats with me, it was still fun watching these bozos being terrible in a social situation and making Winston look like he has all the skills (even with that Charlotte’s Web story).

What does come across is how this is part of hitting the reset button on everything that happened last year and the Schmidt/Jess plot is the far stronger of the two; what it demonstrates is the desire to play around with the ensemble by mixing up the groupings and this is an encouraging sign.

New Girl Style Watch

New Girl 4.02 Jess bow sweaterJess’ super cute short sleeved black sweater with white bows is Alice + Olivia and is also available in the reverse (so white with black bows). Perfect for fall as the temperatures hover between cool and crisp with a chance of ‘Surprise! It’s super warm today.”



4 Responses to “New Girl 4.02 “Dice” Review: Darn Tootin’ Fun”


  1. New Girl 4.03 “Julie Berkman’s Older Sister: Punting the Sweet Fantastic | TV Ate My Wardrobe - October 1, 2014

    […] and Jess are very similar in their strong enthusiasm for certain projects and as I mentioned last week the similarities between Nick and Cece continue to stack up. It’s also not surprising in a […]

  2. New Girl 4.05 “Landline” Review: “Shut it Down” | TV Ate My Wardrobe - October 15, 2014

    […] so far not really connected with anyone to a point beyond a conversation, not at a wedding, with a dating app nor with the micropenis dude. So it’s some kind of bad luck that she has chemistry with the […]

  3. New Girl 4.06 “Background Check” Review: “It Looks Like Your Body is Crying” | TV Ate My Wardrobe - November 5, 2014

    […] planning a surprise birthday party, to the Nick and Jess breakup last year and Nick, Cece and Coach got stoned earlier this season. This exclusion is harsh from a friend point of view, but it works wonders on […]

  4. New Girl 4.14 “Swuit” Review: “Takin’ Care of Business” | TV Ate My Wardrobe - February 4, 2015

    […] to these three characters not sharing much screen time together and the last time was when they got stoned at the police barbecue (okay Nick was also there), which also happened to be when Cece decided to go to college. It is a […]

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