New Girl Series Finale Recap: It's a Weird, Wonderful Life — Grade It!

Tuesday’s New Girl series finale gave us three major milestones in the lives of Jess and the gang… while also hinting at more to come.

In the first half-hour, “The Curse of the Pirate Bride,” Nick and Jess sleep together the night before their wedding. Joan finds them in bed, and insists their decision has put a curse on the big day. Neither the bride nor groom believe in superstitions, but then stuff starts happening. Like, really bad stuff — including, but not limited to: 1) Jess takes a fall and scratches her cornea; 2) Joan finds an eviction notice, informing Nick and Jess that they have 30 days to vacate the loft; 3) Russell comes over and insists he’s still madly in love with Jess, culminating in a ridiculous fight with Nick; 4) Merle drops Nick as a client when he refuses to write any more Julius Pepperwood novels; 5) Aly goes into labor, just as the ceremony’s about to begin.

At the hospital, Nick and Jess decide that they’re ready to start their “weird, wonderful life” together. And so, rather than postpone the wedding, they choose to have it right there, outside the delivery room. Bob and Joan walk their daughter down the, umm, hallway towards the reception desk, and she and Nick tie the knot. Soon after, Aly gives birth to a healthy baby boy. 

The second episode, “Engram Pattersky,” picks up one month later. Jess calls everyone over to announce that she and Nick are being forced out of the loft, and they’ve found a two-bedroom apartment (with reading nook!) nearby. She’s expecting everyone to be sad, but she’s met with blank stares. Her former roommates have already all moved on, and are ready to get back home to their families.

Later, Jess admits that she’s having a hard time letting go of the loft, which has a special place in her heart. Not only has it been her home for the past 10 years, but it’s where she met the people who would become her family. Everyone feels bad, and agrees to stick around and wax nostalgic. Afterwards, they play one last game of True American whilst packing up the apartment, during which we get a very special flash-forward. Nick and Jess are living in a house with their son (!), and playing a kid-friendly version of True American with Cece, Schmidt and their two (!!) kids (yes, Ruth gets a little brother), as well as Winston, Aly and their five (!!!) kids, all of which are boys (!!!!). 

We then cut to our final scene: Nick finishes packing up the U-Haul, then rolls down the door to reveal… the eviction was an elaborate practical joke thought up by Winston. We see a series of cutaways revealing how he pulled it off: Principal Foster and the biology teacher slipped the first notice under the door, then Sadie, who never got an invite to the wedding, agreed to take care of the eviction notice. Last but not least was Mayor — yes, Mayor — Fawn Moscato, who Winston paid to lie when Jess called up asking if there was anything she could do to help.

After the big reveal, Nick runs off, screams at the top of his lungs, then turns back. He insists what’s done is done, then everyone piles into the moving truck to head towards Nick and Jess’ new apartment. The end.

As for my (long) list of favorite moments…

* Nadia returns to give an impromptu toast at the rehearsal dinner: “And so, beautiful monkey cracker and monkey cracker boyfriend, in Russia, we would strap you to goat and see if you live. And if you don’t live, we eat the goat. May you die together.”

* Tran finally speaks, and I’m pretty sure he’s gonna murder Russell.

* I love that Nick and Jess get married to Phil Collins’ “Groovy Kind of Love,” a great callback to this moment.

* Winston names his firstborn Danbill. Aly thinks he’s kidding, but he insists he’s made an executive decision.

* After Jess calls everyone over to announce they’re moving, Schmidt asks, “Why do you always think like a character in The Babysitters’ Club?”

* Winston takes a whiff of the gang’s old candy dish… which turns out to be Schmidt’s penis cast.

* We get our first-ever (and last-ever) scene on the balcony.

* Fat Schmidt returns, and we get one last ridiculous Nick/Schmidt argument about, umm, peppermint foot lotion. (Nothing will ever top “gave me cookie, got you cookie,” but it works.)

* Schmidt finally hears the words he always wanted to hear when Nick admits he loves him.

* Winston and Cece’s first-ever mess-around is revealed in a new flashback showing how they patched up a hole in the living room’s floor using a paper plate and a brown marker.

* Engram Pattersky doesn’t have the same pizzazz as a Julius Pepperwood or Retired Rear Admiral Jay Garage-A-Roo, but I appreciate that our last fake name ties into Prank Sinatra’s greatest practical joke of all. time.

* Jess, in her most adorkable moment since the pilot, reworks the series’ theme song:

“Who’s that girl?
Who’s that girl?
It’s your favorite bitch, Jess!
Hang on to your privates,
because I’m on emotional fire!”
[Cue the air guitar.]

* And, of course, the aforementioned flash-forward to show everyone playing True American with their kids. That hit me right in the feels.

What did you think of the New Girl series finale? Grade it via the following poll, then hit the comments to flesh out your thoughts.