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New Girl: The Healthiest Friendships on TV

 

If you haven’t already gotten on board with New Girl on Netflix, you are truly missing out.

 

New Girl follows the adventures of lovable school teacher Jess, who moves into a loft with three male roommates. It’s funny, extravagant, and quirky, just like its leading lady Zooey Deschanel, but is also real—or as real as a twenty-minute FOX sitcom can be— and heartfelt in a way that is uniquely it's own. Viewers can expect to come for the comedy antics and stay for the relationships, both platonic and romantic. Beyond all the comedic bits and slapstick, the relationships on New Girl are exemplary of the healthy connections we should strive to foster in our own lives.

 

The friendships, the friendships, the friendships! Even though the shenanigans and fights between friends are what drives the show forward, New Girl has developed amazing friendships between its characters, breaking overused TV tropes and portraying semi-realistic relationships that are immediately relatable to audiences. One friendship that I think is completely underrated is Jess and Cece’s. Their friendship's initial characterization simply screams tropey: Cece is a model that underwent the ugly duckling treatment, and Jess is her quirky childhood best friend that always seems to hang in her shadow. It would’ve been easy for the showrunners to give viewers a new iteration of the “Rachel and fat Monica” trope, but instead, the writing actively works to combat it, giving Cece and Jess an unconditionally supportive relationship that doesn’t poke fun at the physical differences between them.

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Cece and Jess are unequivocally real with each other, telling each other the harsh truth when no one else would out of love for their friend. At the end of the day, they want each other to be happy and supported. For instance, at first, Jess is hesitant to accept Cece’s arranged marriage to Shivrang, but after Cece reassures her that it is what she wants to pursue, Jess sets her own feelings aside and plans a (really, really) unforgettable bachelorette party for her. Everyone deserves to have this type of support system: people who you can celebrate your individuality with, who tell you the truth out of love, and who support your endeavors and do not by any circumstances tear you down, and who you can do the same for. 

New Girl shines a light on the most authentic, healthy, and supportive friendships on television. In a TV lineup filled with destructive vampire love triangles, misogynistic bad-boy types, and toxic female competition, Elizabeth Merriweather and the writing team at New Girl prove that healthy relationships can still entertain millions and carry a sitcom through 7 seasons. 

 

Julia is a first-year economics student at UC Santa Barbara. She is an avid swimmer and water sport enthusiast. In her free time, Julia loves watching everything Netflix has to offer, making Spotify playlists, binging podcasts, and rooting for her favorite football team. Julia has not missed an episode of Saturday Night Live since 2016 and her greatest goal is to write and publish a book.
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