Zooey Deschanel, the hipster labradoodle with bangs, is a sort of love it or hate it proposition. Either people are into her Williamsburg boho approximation of a Lisa Frank folder with giant eyes and twee giggles, or they want to punch her in the face. The same is true for her new Fox sitcom New Girl. So, which side are you on?
As for the show itself? Well, it's fine. I don't know that I laughed out loud, but there were a lot of things I think were clever or original about it. The concept is Zooey's Jess, a girl who appears to be exactly what the love-it-or-hate-it public thinks Zooey is in real life, gets dumped by her boyfriend and moves into an apartment with three guy's guys. Initially the lothario roommate just wants her because she has model friends. The jock roommate doesn't want her because he can't talk to girls, and the hoodie roommate just Michael Cera's back and forth and can't make up his mind. She moves in and they hate her. But eventually, she teaches them how to get in touch with their feelings and they teach her to stop singing to herself on dates and to stop lying on the couch crying to Dirty Dancing. This is how things happen on the other side of your flat screen.
But the show, well, it's fine. It looks like a modern sitcom without a laugh track (thank Christ) and a fresh approach to catch the young viewers—which it did in spades. Yes, it's fine. It's just fine. There were some funny bits and there were some groans, but it all boils down to how you feel about Jess, which is really about how you feel about Zooey.
So, what do you think? I was kind of charmed by her. Yes, it's impossible to think that a young woman as comely as her couldn't get laid any time she wants, but it's her personality that turns people off, not her appearance. Do you really want some goofy girl singing songs to herself in bed? Surely there are people out there that do. At least she's not the Charlie's Angels version of sexy women that network TV usually serves up as its lust objects. But I'd certainly be her friend. In fact, I have a friend who even looks like Zooey and is just like her and I very much so enjoy her company—in small doses.
Can this show make it in the long run? Well, it seems to have potential, especially if they flesh out the currently two-dimensional roommate characters, but it could also fall into the easy rut of "Zooeys Wacky Adventure of the Week" territory. Either way, how you feel about this show is linked to how you feel about Zooey. So, guys, tell us what you think. Love her or hate her?