Couples on television can often set unrealistic expectations. Falling into the goals category can be entertaining but the pair never reaches beyond that. In New Girl, Nick Miller and Jessica Day are the exception to this accepted standard. Out of all the couples in recent media history, they are the closest I align myself with. Their journey was a bumpy one full of valuable life lessons. Nick & Jess taught me what real love looks like through various methods.
1. Be Supportive
From the beginning, I loved how they always supported each other’s professional endeavors even if they didn’t understand them completely. With The Pepperwood Chronicles Jess ultimately made all the difference. Although the entire friend group wanted Nick to finish his novel sooner than later (let’s also not forget the classic Z is for Zombie), Jess helped it become a reality. She used heavy industrial glue to put copies together and gave Reagan the inspirational speech at the reading to give Nick confidence. She didn’t try to change his vision but instead wanted to add to the experience. Nick also showed up for multiple school events whenever Jess was in need (taking the kids to see the ocean, chaperoning dances, science fairs even when he was dealing with the weight of the world). He was also part of the Solvang trip to calm her down before becoming principal. They supported each other as friends, as a couple, and as exes which is not an easy feat to achieve.
2. Family Can Sense It
For a long time Nick and Jess tried to deny how they felt about each other. Whether it was Jess trying to avoid her feet pointing at Nick or Nick rushing to move in with Caroline, their families always felt like there was something more. Bob tried desperately to keep Nick away since he didn’t think he was good enough for Jess while Nick’s parents seen how Jess took care of him. She was there during one of the most difficult times in his life and even impersonated Elvis at his father’s funeral to make things go according to plan. In our own lives we think we are hiding or suppressing feelings from our parents, but Nick and Jess taught me that parents see right through that!
3. You Don’t Always Have To Compromise
Although it is still one of the most depressing moments in the Nick and Jess saga, their breakup had incredible value in it. New Girl showed us they were deeply in love but once they started talking about future hypotheticals, they realized that their visions were different. Opposing views on education, intergalactic truck driving careers, and having set plans while attempting to put together a child’s birthday gift revealed some difficult truths. It’s not easy to realize you want different thinks but Nick and Jess broke up and experienced growth individually. In the end because they didn’t just compromise to solve a fight, they understood each other better and accepted one another.
4. There Are Friends Who Won’t Pick Sides
Initially Nick and Jess didn’t want to tell anyone in the group that they broke up to not take away from Winston’s spotlight and they didn’t want things to change. Although it took some adjusting on all ends, Nick and Jess taught me that there are friend groups who can withstand a breakup. It easily could have been Winston and Schmidt completely disregarding Jess, but the entire group had a history together and worked hard to maintain that friendship. I’d say it’s a common fear to lose friends in a break up, but New Girl shows us true friends will stick around.
5. Love Is Complicated
I’ve spent the past two steps discussing their break up so how can I think Nick and Jess are a good example of love? It’s because in New Girl, they didn’t have the picture-perfect fairy tale. Even when Jess moved in it was because she was getting out of a relationship so a romance with Nick wasn’t even a thought. Both sides dated a fair amount of people before/after each other which shows that life goes on. Love is not easy, and this couple is a clear testament to that.
6. Admit Your Truth
Towards the end of the New Girl series, Nick and Jess are clearly in a place where they want to get back together. Jess admits it to Cece and Nick admits it to Schmidt, but it is not until the season 6 finale that it finally culminates. Although extra drama was added with the elevator, Nick and Jess demonstrate how once you discover the truth that it can be overwhelming to expose. Thankfully they admit the truth to each other in an absolutely beautiful scene.
7. Milestones Don’t Have To Be Perfect
A lot of hiccups occurred in New Girl for Nick and Jess because they always wanted things to be perfect. From asking each other out to Nick planning Jess’s birthday, each time they arrived at the conclusion that they were perfect in their own way. We spend a whole episode waiting for Nick to propose to Jess but Mario gets thrown into the mix. He ends up proposing with (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life playing in the background which was perfect. Jess marries Nick with an eye patch in a hospital and it couldn’t have been any other way for them.
8. Find Someone To Play True American For Life With
Hopefully you’ve seen the family flashforward in the series family but even if you haven’t, Nick and Jess taught me that it’s all about who you want as your partner. No matter how to get there, if you are side by side it’s all worth it. It was not easy for them and I know that love is not easy in life. If you can end up married with a kid while staring at your best friend, consider yourselves lucky indeed.
What are some of your favorite New Girl moments? Wishing you a Nick and Jess type love complete with a baby Reginald!
Featured Image: Weheartit
Rebecca was born in Hayward, CA and still resides there today. She received her BA in English Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and is the first in her family to graduate from university. She is a Poetry student in the MFA program at Saint Mary’s College of California and is furthering her involvement in the literary community. In her spare time, she likes to lose her voice at Giants games, read Young Adult novels, make lists, and aims to cross become a writer off it.