Note: Do not read on if you have not yet seen Season 2, Episode 17 of Fox's "New Girl," titled "Parking Spot."
Even a great show like "New Girl" has its dull moments. This episode definitely a lackluster example. Nick's usually sharp jokes fell flat; Schmidt wasn't there to catch them; the energy was at a solid 5 outta 10; the storyline didn't progress much; and the awkwardness remains even though they're all in their thirties and should get over one single kiss. But that's just the way the cookie crumbles, I guess. I'll let you off with a warning, "New Girl." You better come back strong next week.
Now let's sum it up.
Nick and Jess are still being weird about that kiss, which is taking it a bit too far, Liz Meriwether. While brushing their teeth and after an even weirder sex joke (Nick, obvs), Schmidt storms into the bathroom and announces he has found a new parking spot. Apparently all four of them have horrible parking spaces and are in dire need of this one. So it's on.
Winston is the first one out of the race because Daisy (remember her, from the bar two episodes ago?) booty calls him and sex trumps futile feuds. Nick drops out because of what appears to be a staring contest, which he of course lost because they don't make models as uncomfortable as he is anymore. It's between Jess and Schmidt, and Nick has to be the decider.
Jess, all suggestive, flirts with Nick in his crusty hoodie to get the spot. He quickly surrenders. When Schmidt tries his moves on him, he realizes it's too late. He also realizes he's been missing something, something that makes the apartment smell like filth and lust. Nick breaks and admits that they kissed. They try to downplay it, he and Jess, but Schmidt is seriously upset (or is he?).
Seeing how aggravated the kiss makes him, Nick flips on Jess and gives Schmidt the parking spot. At this point it looks like it was all a manipulative ploy where said awkwardness could've ceased to exist because, seriously, the guy just played ya, Nick. But no. it's still weird. Like physical comedy weird, which I get is Zooey's favorite kind (Jake Johnson recently said so on "Vulture"), but it was weak. Just saying.
Anyhoo, to compensate for his weirdness and perhaps distract from it, Nick decides to pursue the parking spot himself. The three race to their respective cars -- Schmidt finds his car middled in the parking lot, Nick has to peel the cardboard boxes that keep his piece of trash car safe under a bridge, and Jess naturally has to Instagram the multiple cats sitting on her car. When Schmidt arrives at the parking garage, he finds Nick sitting there on a chair, claiming it his own. But Schmidt wants it so bad, he's willing to run Nick over. Then Jess shows up and runs her car into Schmidt's to push him away. In all the commotion, the space opens up and they all run to grab an inch of it. Overly determined to win this, the trio insist they can stay there all night.
What seems like hours later, they're still there. Nick is starving, Schmidt has to pee, Jess is all good. Emotions run high and Schmidt berates Nick for breaking the agreement all three guys signed when Jess moved in -- the No Nail Oath. "A woman cannot be in close quarters with three men and kiss one of them," Schmidt explains to Jess. "What fuels men? Competition, and sex. That's why the United Nations was born, that's why girls aren't allowed on pirate ships, and that's why there's a No Nail Oath in apartment 4D."
Nick, probably out of starvation and despair, tells Jess that Schmidt is right. That kiss was the dumbest thing he's ever done, dumber than Caroline, dumber than law school, dumber than when he thought it was pronounced Brako Bama. He regrets it and wants to take it back. Jess, understandably hurt, outs herself from the contest and leaves. Nick runs after her and tells her the agreement they signed was not for her, for fear she wouldn't be able to control herself, but for him. For fear he wouldn't. And just when they almost have another moment (I died a little), Schmidt walks in and reminds them that this will end bad and until it does, he's not going anywhere.
He also reads out loud the No Nail Oath, which stipulates that a roommate can nail said female (Jess) if the sex can be parlayed into a business profitable for all parties involved, or if all three of them can do the same. As in, nail her. Since Nick nailed Jess' mouth, Schmidt feels it's only right for him to kiss her too. Lucky for all Ness fans everywhere, that version doesn't go as smoothly. It might have even made things weirder. Sigh
Right at that moment, Winston comes barging in, very unhappy. Because while all this was going on in apt 4D, Winston was running all over town trying to find a condom to hook up with Daisy, which didn't happen. The parking spot becomes his win. Until it turns out to be too tight, but hey. At least that's settled.
The night's little savers:
Nick: "I can't have people thinking my decision wasn't above board, the city can't have another scandal!"
Jess: "He's been manipulating you the whole time!"
Nick: "You know what Jess, stop! You're manipulating me, he's manipulating me, and I'm getting confused! I am the decider of us three, I decide! Let the decider decide, I am not the suggester! I'm not having a good time with this game..."
When Jess can't find Schmidt's nipples.
Schmidt pees himself just so he won't have to abandon the parking spot.
"New Girl" airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST on Fox.