Any TV show that employs the use of a “douchebag jar” has a significant amount of potential.
“New Girl,” the new Fox comedy set to premiere Sept. 20, definitely has potential. It has plenty of hype as well, with ads every 10 minutes on Fox and a prime spot right after the ever-popular “Glee” on Tuesday nights. However, “New Girl”could be better.
Zooey Deschanel stars as Jess, a slightly offbeat woman who just got dumped by her boyfriend. Needing a new place to live, she moves in with Nick (Jake Johnson), Schmidt (Max Greenfield) and Coach (Damon Wayans Jr.) after letting it slip that her best friend is a model—played by Hannah Simone, who provides a nice punch to the show for the five minutes she is on screen. Her new roommates don’t quite expect her endless sobbing to “Dirty Dancing” and continuous singing to herself. Once they get used to her, however, they encourage her to try to start living her life again.
The first episode felt rushed. The boys seem to get to know Jess extremely quickly and their “annoyance” with some of her odd qualities is dismissed fairly quickly. The episode tries too much for the time given.
There is a great chemistry among the four roommates, which hopefully continues despite Wayans leaving for a previous commitment on ABC’s “Happy Endings.” He will be replaced by Lamorne Morris. It’s a shame, because Coach’s awkward interactions with Jess and admitted inability to speak to women were endearing.
Greenfield provides a few good laughs as a bit of a sleaze who usually means well, but it’s Johnson who truly shines of the three men. He receives the secondary story line after Deschanel and manages to steal some scenes from her—a feat in itself.
Deschanel steals the show altogether though, making Jess a quirky and adorable leading lady who is easy to root for, even when it would be easier to look away from the screen in secondhand embarrassment.
“New Girl” combines the right amount of awkward, quirky and outright funny that will appeal to audiences and bring them back for more.
However, there is still more that could be done to improve the show. While the characters are amusing, all four could benefit from more characterization to make them three-dimensional.
Overall, the show could just be more. The potential is there, but “New Girl” hasn’t quite hit the mark yet.
“New Girl” premieres at 9 p.m. Sept. 20 on Fox.