“The Captain” was, by far, hands down, one of the funniest episodes of New Girl we’ve seen in quite some time. Certainly replete with awkward moments (the eponymous Captain, for one), they added to the episode’s hilarity, rather than detracting from it.
As has so often been the case lately, the episode focused on Nick and Jessica. Stopping that from becoming trite, however, was the addition of Schmidt into the mix, as he tried every trick in his arsenal to mentally undermine the fledgling couple. He played on Nick’s commitment phobia and Jess’s incessant need to talk about her feelings to throw a wrench in the works, and, well, it nearly works. But he pushed it that little bit too far, prompting Nick to man up and talk about his feelings and prompting Jess to quiet down, just once.
Our favorite strand in the episode, by far, though, was Winston’s. His growing reliance on his new cat – using Ferguson as a crutch to avoid the fact that he’s alone – was hilarious. His determination to get Ferguson laid pre-neutering and his obliviousness to the advances of the attractive blonde were perfection. We also appreciate the fact that, with Ferguson around, we won’t have to deal with too many episodes in which Schmidt and Winston are thrown together just to give them something to do. Plus, we got some fantastic moments out of it. The transformation of his bedroom into a sex dungeon for cats was … we have no words.
But the episode wasn’t just mindless comedy. It was comedy with a lesson. The episode’s loft meeting showed us that. As Schmidt became ever more violently anti-Nessica, it took Winston (Winston!) being the sensible one to drive the point home – Schmidt screwed up. And it’s time he dealt with that. He can blame Nick and Jess, he can blame whomever he’d like, but he has to deal with the fact that he screwed up and start trying to make it right.
The final moments glimpse of Cece discarding his letter was a little heartbreaking, and enough to show us that contrition will be a major theme for Schmidt this season. And we’re excited by that. We’re all for rip-roarious comedy, but we like a little depth, too. Giving Schmidt something grown up to deal with will be a nice change of pace and should prove interesting. – K
Quoteworthy: “Ain’t no way in hell I got a cat brothel going on in my room and I’m the only normal person in this loft.” – Winston