In Zooey Deschanel's new sitcom, New Girl, she plays Jess, an "adorkable" awkward chick who finds out her boyfriend is cheating on her and ends up living with three single guys she finds on the internet. The show supposedly takes a "fresh and outrageous look at modern male/female relationships," but most twenty- or thirty-something American women will find Jess fairly familiar: She wears cute glasses, she's obsessed with Dirty Dancing, she's single and she sings little theme songs to herself all the time. As David Hinkley from the New York Daily News points out, the weirdest part of the show is that when Jess tries to convince the guys to let her be their new roommate:
On what planet, in what galaxy, under what kind of heathen spell would three guys hesitate to give that fourth slot to Zooey Deschanel?
Seriously. Let's not pretend that spunky, glasses-wearing brunette isn't catnip for a hip young single dude.
Another quibble: Jess's antics — singing aloud and picking up guys by saying, "hey, sailor!" aren't that weird. I don't know, maybe I run with an odd crew, but nothing Jess did struck me as oh my god that chick is out of her mind loopy. Her quirkiness is pretty tame — no worse than Liz Lemon's idiosyncrasies — and when she talks about "hiding her crazy," you may think, what crazy? In many ways, Jess is Liz Lemon Junior, and since we love LL, that's a good thing. (Another thing that bugged me: When she shows up for her roommate interview, she's wearing an adorable frock, but when she's heading out on a date she suddenly doesn't know how to get dressed? What is that about?)
All that aside, the pilot of New Girl was pretty good: Deschanel is charming, the dudes recognize when they're being douchebags, and, unlike 2 Broke Girls, no laugh track was added, thank God. The response has been good, and tumblr is overflowing with silly Jess gifs. Now if we can just get over the shock of finding a smart new three-dimensional female character on TV…