Academic Writing

Thursday, January 05, 2012

The New Girl is Adorkable

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Has anyone been watching "New Girl?"  It's that new show on Fox with Zooey Deschanel which has coined the term "Adorkable."  I'm not sure why I started watching it, I'm usually not an early adapter when it comes to sitcoms.  I was late on the How I Met Your Mother train.  I am only now getting into The Big Bang Theory and while everyone seems to be loving Happy Endings, I just cannot get on board.  There's something about New Girl, however, that keeps me coming back.

A definite prerequisite of this show is that you must like Jess' (Zooey) quirkiness.  She's a total oddball, but there's something endearing and sweet to her demeanor that I totally works.  The premise of her breaking up with her boyfriend and then happening upon this apartment of three guys who agree to take her in is totally not believable, yet I let it go.  The three men (ok, boys) who she lives with are beyond sweet guys and while they also have their little character quirks and flaws, they are so relatable that they remind you of your guy friends, or the guy friends you wished you had. 

This show is about individual expression and being true to ones self.  Not once does Jess apologize for who she is, nor does she change because others are telling her to.  If anything, her being around encourages her friends to be more "out there."  What's also interesting is that her quirkiness and adorkability shines a spot light on the ridiculousness of being on the straight and narrow.  We live in an era where the conformists and the non-conformists are violently clashing.  That's essentially what the 99% Occupy Wall Street issue is raging over.  If it was merely over lack of jobs things would likely have not taken the turn they have.  The people sitting in Zucotti Park could be looking for jobs, volunteering their time, or doing something else to benefit society while they aren't working.  However, they have decided to make it known that they are nonconformists and are rebelling against those who work the system. 

That might be a bit of a stretch, but I think it's interesting that non-conformity is so much in the spotlight today, and manifests itself in different ways.  OWS has become very controversial and there is zero actual controversy in New Girl, so maybe thats the message.  That you can be different and assert your independence and not alienate mainstream society.  New Girl celebrates individuality and nonconformity but as an active member of the community.   Jess is different and quirky, but somehow she's also totally relatable.  All the characters are, in fact.  Maybe I'm just reading too much into it, but nonetheless there might be something to it.

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