In a way, New Girl's transformation into a well-oiled comedy machine this season has been bad news for me as a reviewer.
Before, there was stuff to complain about. But how many weeks can I get by with just saying "This was pretty freakin' funny?" before the reading public calls for my head?
This half hour was a light confection with pretty low stake, however. I mean, Cece is just not getting married, not even if you believe in that theory of multi-verses where every single thing that could ever happen is happening in some universe right now.
Still, the installment landed nicely on its feet, with just as many Schmidt fat suit flashbacks, awesome New Girl quotes and horny lesbian gynecologists as you'd like to see on a Tuesday night.
But for an episode with low stakes, it did shed some interesting light on Cece. Though the show has always given Cece a lot to do, it has only been in the second half of this season that we've gotten a look at who she really is - and that is a successful model who somehow still hates herself so much that she'll marry a virtual stranger and change everything about herself.
This is yet another example of New Girl sneaking some innovative characterization in through the back door, without making a big deal about it. Male self-loathing is never in short supply on TV (in that it is, you know, basically the backbone of modern humor), but spinning comedy out of a beautiful girl's self-hatred is a pretty unusual move.
Comedies are often most comfortable giving self-loathing female characters some traits that society also finds unappealing in women, so that their negativity "makes sense" (The Big Bang Theory's Amy Farrah Fowler jumps to mind). But Cece has almost everything that's supposed to make you happy: she's beautiful, desired by men, and lives a glamorous lifestyle. And still she can barely stand herself... just because that's the way life is sometimes. It's ballsy, and I hope other shows are sitting up and taking note.
Of course, there can be no mate for a lady with that much self-loathing, except a guy who spends every flashback scene in a fat suit (should we start calling them "fats-backs"?).
I loved this episode's latest chapter of the Tale of Fat Schmidt - revealing that, contrary to the emasculated Fat Schmidt we've seen so often in flashbacks, Fat Schmidt was a better boyfriend and may have even been a happier human being than Skinny Schmidt. What will come of those three pizzas that Schmidt brought to Elizabeth's house? This is seriously a The Killing-level cliffhanger for me.
Okay, I was wrong about this episode being a light confection. "Bachelorette Party" was actually a pretty compelling investigation into the meaning of self-loathing and self-worth, somehow set on a stage flanked by male strippers and dick pics. I don't know how you do the voodoo that you do so well, New Girl, but please, keep doing it.
Do you think Cece is actually going to get married? How do you think the Schmidt-Cece match-up compares to the Jess-Nick pairing? Which New Girl character would you invite to your bachelorette party?