Cultural Analysis: New Girl
The show New Girl features Jess, a young woman who goes through a hard break-up and ends up moving in with three male roommates; Nick, Shmidt, and Winston. It is an unconventional situation. Jess’ best friend Cece is also a regular character and becomes friends with all the guys too. The show is a great light-hearted sitcom.
The TV show New Girl breaks the stereotype of boys and girls not being able to be just friends. In the show, Jess is friends with all three of the guys she lives with, and while at first, the guys think it will be weird, they all get along great. The show does a great job of showing that Jess and the guys can live together and have functioning non-romantic relationships. However, you could argue that the show supports this stereotype, because Jess and Nick become romantically involved later on in the show. I would disagree though, because she still maintains platonic relationships with Winston and Schmidt.
This quality is what makes this show so great, along with the fact that New Girl does a great job of showing realistic romantic relationships. For example, Nick and Jess’ relationship is complicated and confusing for them, and it takes them a long time to figure out what they mean to each other. This is what relationships in real life are actually like, as opposed to the classic movie trope of “love at first sight.” Winston and Shmidt also go through a lot of relationships, some are longer and more serious, some are not, just like real life. Shmidt also falls in love with Jess’ best friend CeCe, and they date for a while, but Cece ends up dating other people, getting engaged, etc. I think this is really valuable because it depicts real life, and how relationships are messy, and it’s not always a “love at first sight” deal.
The show also has a great cast, that is much more diverse than most I see on TV. It is diverse in terms of race; Shmidt is Jewish, Winston is black, and Cece is Indian. Winston also dates an asian girl, and Cece dates another Indian man. It is great to see a diverse cast like this without the classic media stereotypes attached to them. New Girl shows a lot of Cece’s arranged marriage to the Indian man, and the culture around it, which is definitely not something you see a lot on TV, and it adds to the unconventional romantic relationships seen on the show.
The TV show New Girl does a great job breaking a lot of different stereotypes. It helps to break the stereotype that men and women can’t be in relationships that are not romantic, and that not all romantic relationships are easy and make sense, as well as breaking racial stereotypes. The show is a light-hearted show, but when you look deeper you can really see the importance of it. New Girl shows that all people can be friends, no matter how “different” they are.