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I guess I just like liking things

I thoroughly love New Girl, but it has been driving me crazy all season long. This Nick/Jess thing is blerg, and I’m apparently the only one who thinks so. Most places I read are all “It’s about time!” and “More!” and I’m all “afhasDFKjhsvhsvl.”  The thing is, I know all about the “will they or won’t they?” thing that TV shows do and how important that is and yada yada yada.  I do!  I really get it!  But this one… hmpf.

Let’s look at some others here:

Sam & Diane (Cheers)

My wife and started watching through Cheers about a month ago. I had only seen a handful of episodes and she had never seen any. It’s been a fun trip so far, seeing the differences in sitcoms from thirty years ago and today, especially as reflected in hairstyles. But “Sam & Diane” is always held up as one of the classic relationships in TV history. I know enough to know she’s not around past the mid-point of the show, so here in the middle of the second season there’s still plenty of ups and downs ahead of us. Thing is, I don’t get why they’re together. She’s a jerk to him 90% of the time. Seriously!  I mean, Sam’s no paragon of virtue and correctness, but she’s constantly calling him dumb and whatnot. Not only should they not be dating, she should get fired. Ugh. Maybe things get better in the next few seasons, I don’t know. I know that after Diane we get a similar thing with Rebecca, so I don’t even know whether to look forward to that or not.

Madelyn & David (Moonlighting)

I’ve never even seen an episode of this show, so there’s no good reason for me to include it, other than everyone says that when these two finally got together it ruined the show.

J.D. & Elliot (Scrubs)

I know plenty of people who got tired of their on-again/off-again, but viewed over the course of the whole show I really liked it. There were times, of course, when I was watching it weekly that it’d be all “ARGH,” but being able to watch it in chunks now makes it better. And I love love love the way that one ended.

Turk & Carla (Scrubs)

This is one of my favorite relationships on an TV show ever. Believable, temperamental, and sweet.

(At this point you’re expecting me to do a J.D. & Turk joke, but I ain’t gonna, so there!)

Jim & Pam (The Office)

This is another of my favorite TV relationships. Or at least it was, until the showrunners got the brilliant idea to do ridiculous things with it this season. It’s still my favorite part of The Office, the calm center all the other crazy things circled.  “Boring,” my friend who hates them together says. “Nertz to you,” I say in response.

Ross & Rachel / Monica & Chandler (Friends)

The Ross & Rachel thing drove me crazy, and still does on rewatch.  I don’t know, it just got so hateful at times. I think I’m more of a “those two are going to be together, let them be together” fan, but that’s why they don’t let me write for TV: you need conflict.  I’m much more a fan of Monica & Chandler’s story, and now that I think about it, it’s because it’s like the Turk & Carla story. They start dating, they realistically progress, and on from there, even to be the tying-up point of the show’s ending.

Jerry & Elaine (Seinfeld)

We start the show (eventually) with them having dated, but they aren’t anymore. There are a couple of episodes where they flirt with advancing their relationship, but that’s it. Putting the two of them back together for any length of time would have completely undermined the show, and I love the nod to that effect in the “show within a show” episodes. “We’re going to mention this because we know it’s a terrible idea, but look at these network execs who think it would be good. Knuckleheads!”

Liz & Jack (30 Rock)

This is where we get into the “people want it to happen but I don’t know why because that’s ridiculous” category, a category that is in need of a serious name revamp. Liz & Jack very clearly work best as a teacher-student/friend dynamic, but there were apparently a lot of people who wanted to see them get together. Can you mimagine how much that would have ruined the show?  I don’t get why people wanted this…

Nick & Jess (New Girl)

…which brings us back to New Girl. The roommate dynamic among the four leads is fantastic, witty, and sharp. Bringing in people for them to date for a few episodes works great in the context of the show. Plus, you’ve got the nice Schmidt/CeCe dynamic going so you’ve got a steady thi– oh, wait, no you don’t.  Stupid jerk showrunners. Bah. That’s the relationship that makes sense in this show. I like Nick a lot and I like Jess a lot. I dislike “Nick & Jess” so very, very much. Granted, maybe when the show has run its course and I can watch it all at once like Scrubs, maybe I’ll end up being okay with it. Right now, though, it is driving me crazy.

I can’t distill from these examples what makes it okay or not in my book. If it’s not the main cast (Schmidt & CeCe), or the main cast is big enough (Scrubs, The Office) it seems to be okay for me. I think Nick & Jess is too much like if Jerry & Elaine were together for me. I like licorice and I like pecan pie, but I wouldn’t like them together, no, sir.


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