New Girl Review: Sister, Sister

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Never have the lyrics to New Girl's theme song seemed quite as loaded as they did in New Girl Season 3 Episode 17, where they applied to Abby Day as much as they did her more mild-mannered sister.

Hey girl, whatcha doing?

Probably something sexual and horrifying with Schmidt - and on a communal cooking surface, no less. Who's that girl? It's AGGGGGH.

In this second part of a three-episode arc that included New Girl Season 3 Episode 16, we went deeper with Abby, the nefarious Jessica Wakefield to Jess's innocent Elizabeth (yes, the Wakefields of "Sweet Valley" fame were twins, but just go with me on this).

We went so deep, in fact, that Abby actually started to seem like an alternate reality version of Jess, when you think about it: both are a smidgen detached from reality, love trickery, dress in a manner that seems incompatible with traditional full-time work, etc.

But really... is sitting on a car at a museum that different from something New Girl Season 1 Jess would have done? Need I remind you folks about the time when she threw those car keys into the desert?

Oh my god, is Abby some kind of mutated, time-traveling Jess from the past? Sent to warn us about...war? Famine? Schmidt's troubling sexual habits?

Probably not. But clearly, Jamie Lee Curtis and Rob Reiner made some very questionable, but very intriguing, parenting choices along the way with these two - and the characters are pure pleasure to watch together.

Though Abby was dropped into the New Girl eco-system rather suddenly, she almost immediately became an enjoyable part of it, because there was no pressure on the viewer to like her. Which, ironically, made her much easier to like (this was the opposite of my own experience with Coach's similar crash-landing in the beginning of New Girl Season 3).

Abby functions as a much-needed bad idea tornado on a show that's still good, but has grown a bit sedate.

Now that Jess is semi-sensible, Cece's depressed and Schmidt is off weirding around his own apartment, away from our prying eyes, who will stir the pot? Who will make the entertaining mistakes? Who will do the things that would totally get you arrested in the real world? Who's that girl? IT'S ABBY!

Though I assume Abby will be departing our screens for greener pastures/ mandatory minimum sentencing soon, I do wish she could stay.

For all her ungrounded outrageousness, she made a great foil for Jess and I think her character could develop into a real multi-faceted high-wire-act of a human being. Imagine the adventures we could have with Abby! She could get into fist fights at the bar! She could get into fist fights at Coach's gym! Basically, this show just needs more fist fights!

But seriously. Abby had been a great addition as the show has righted itself mid-season. This arc - while as hilarious and clever and New Girl quotes-filled as ever - also comes as close as the show ever has to making a serious statement about growing up: no matter how much we've been able to trick friends and lovers into thinking that we're semi-normal, to our families, we're always going to be the nuts, pathological liars, and control freaks we are in our most vulnerable moments.

And struggling to live with and make sense of that knowledge is one of most difficult endeavors of adulthood.

In case that was too serious an ending for you, here is an alternate version: In the words of that classic Eurythmics song, "Sisters/ are doing Schmidt/ for themselves" (yes, that is probably the worst joke I've told in my entire life, but once I thought it up, I couldn't make it go away, and now it is your problem, like the videotape in The Ring. Sorry!)

But enough about my compulsive need to make up parody songs that mash-up 80's pop hits with the plots of popular half-hour comedies:

How will Abby's adventure with the gang end?

Sister II Review

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New Girl Season 3 Episode 17 Quotes

Crazy girls are kind of my 'Hurt Locker.'


Girl, I got an a...sandwich...meeting.