You know you’ve created a great cast of characters in a sitcom when one of the highlights of an episode, maybe even the season, is watching one of the characters read to the others. It doesn’t hurt that Z is for Zombie, the zombie romance novel which Nick spent only 14 hours writing, is hilarious on its own, filled with a word search that has no actual words (keep looking, ya idiots!) But even if Winston was reading the phonebook to Nick, Jess and Schmidt, it seems like the writers would make it something worth watching. Nick would probably make fun of the names, while Schmidt would create histories for every person and Jess would probably create voices based on names alone.
This may seem like a stretch, but the writers of New Girl have created five characters that are so much fun to be around and watch just hang out, that they could do almost anything and turn it into a successful episode. This is of course thanks to great writers who have these characters down, and game actors who make every line seem like they could potentially be made up on the spot. When it comes to Nick and Schmidt, it’s hard to tell where the script ends and the improvising begins.
As great as Nick and Schmidt can be, especially this season, it’s sometimes easy to forget that Jess is supposed to be the main character—also a sign of a great ensemble. After a visit from her lesbian friends Sadie and Melissa, played by the episode’s writer Kay Cannon, both Jess and Cece are worried that the time for their eggs is running out. Also under time restraints is Nick, who starts and finishes his zombie novel after going to the zoo drunk to apparently be like Ernest Hemingway. But it’s clear that when Nick says he needs to eat his way out of a sandwich house, he’s not really sure what being like Hemingway means. During all of this, Winston is constantly trying to get sleep, as his nightly position at the radio station has given him an adjusted schedule, one that doesn’t match well with the antics of the rest of the group.
While there’s a lot to like about “Eggs,” the way the relationship between Schmidt and Cece becomes closer, without the two of them ever sharing a scene, is natural and well-done. Schmidt, after failing to prove to his boss that he is a “vagenius” since she needs love to have good sex, Schmidt finally realizes that he does actually have feelings, specifically love for Cece that he’s just now realizing. Cece finds out that her eggs have less time than she thinks and when suggesting the idea of children to her now-boyfriend Robby, he mentions he’d like kids in about a decade or so. “Eggs” inches the show’s main couple together in a way that makes sense, rather than winding them up so tight that they can’t control themselves around each other, like in “Menzies.”
It’s easy to heap even more praise on Nick, Schmidt and Jess, all of whom have great moments, but Winston and Cece are having a much stronger season than last year. Winston is trying to stay the most stable member of the group, forcing his way through situations he knows he can’t continue with before he implodes. Cece is filled with quiet uncertainty, constantly questioning if she’s making the right decisions, whether it comes to her job, her friends or her relationships. These two have grown so much this season thankfully, and while their characters aren’t currently as flashy as the others, what they’re doing is also quite special.
New Girl has done a great job finding humor in the pain, as Cece deals with this new potential change in her life. Episodes like “Fluffer” and “Injured” all dealt with sorrow amongst the group, yet they were still able to be hilarious. Having Schmidt demonstrate his sex techniques, Winston reading the aforementioned zombie novel and Nick drunk at a zoo are all great, but having that source of emotional drive that Cece brings makes all the humor even greater.
But if there’s one thing that “Eggs” has taught us, it’s that some publisher needs to make Z is for Zombie available to buy, filled with misspellings of “rhythm” and wordless word searches. You know, for the idiots.