Photo Source: AV/TV Club

Episode Synopsis:

Jess and Nick return from a European book tour for “The Pepperwood Chronicles”; Schmidt and Cece throw a birthday party for their daughter, where Jess sees her ex, Russell; Winston and Aly try to pick a pregnancy photo.

Nick & Jess

First of all, can we get an AMEN! that Nick and Jess are finally happy and back together. I’ve been anticipating this day for so long and it felt so great to see them so in love. It was interesting, that the writers thought they could psych the audience out with Jess and another man exiting an elevator in the beginning scene, but come on writers, you can’t fool us. My heart exploded when Nick and Jess kissed and said that they loved each other and it was slightly surprising that the love birds weren’t engaged yet. I’m actually happy that they haven’t gotten engaged yet, because us Nick and Jess fans, want to see all their special moments shown on TV. Further along in the episode, I thought it was smart of the writers to revisit the fact that Nick and Jess always have had problems moving forward in their relationship. And even Russell, who we get to see again, remembers that. Which in turn makes me excited, because that gives us a hint of what might come in a future episode, about what was actually written on those valet cards way back when. But it’s also interesting that after Russell finds out that Nick and Jess aren’t engaged, he ruffles Jess’s feathers and she blurts out that they actually are engaged. And let’s just side track for second and talk about Jess’s new look. I know that the nose ring and tattoo were suppose to be Jess’s “European look,” but I really didn’t think it was necessary. Just if she came back in a new style of clothing, would have sufficed. Now Nick is another story. I’m loving how put together he is looking. He’s looking more professional and definitely more mature. It’s a great next step for him. His whole conflict with asking Jess to marry him was amazing because it showed how much he truly loves her and how he wants to make the proposal just right. It’s so sweet that he wants to propose to her in the loft, because that’s where he fell in love with her; but putting Jess’s ring in an envelope was kind of weird. Thank god she never opened that envelope. Back at the party, when Jess reveals to him, that she told Russell that she was engaged, there we were again, with Nick starting to freak out and returning to his usual self. And back when Nick’s proposal fell through, some more interesting things happened. Jess made life harder for Nick, by saying that she didn’t care about being engaged to him (which I’m pretty sure she’s lying about, because she already freaked out about it once), and Nick having to tell Bob that his proposal fell through. Some key facts were revealed. Nick said that this proposal was 10 years in the making, which is pretty remarkable, and that he has a month to propose to Jess. I wonder if the pressure will start to weigh on Nick after a while. Lastly, career-wise, I’m so glad to see Nick doing so well. I’m proud of him and this season already shows that Nick has matured so much and has grown exponentially as a character. I loved that we got a reference to Russell’s office again because now Nick copied his office to look like his. That was such a great scene, when Nick was in awe of Russell’s office, in Season 1. And as for Jess, it’s kind of crazy that she quit her job and now is possibly going to be working for Russell. That’s definitely going to cause some tension since they’re exes. All in all, this episode set up some good storylines for Nick and Jess for the rest of the season, and I’m excited to see what happens next.

The Mustache

Man, it was good to see Nick and Schmidt back together again and fighting about stupid things. It’s always so hilarious and their moments are always comedy gold. This time, it was all about Schmidt’s mustache. I gotta side with Nick, and say that that mustache was so wrong for Schmidt. And like Nick said, Schmidt looked like a “porn star relief picture.” It was so funny to see how much hate Nick had for Schmidt’s mustache and physically couldn’t contain himself. Schmidt egged him on, by asking what he thought of his mustache, and Nick tried to hold back, but later let loose, after seeing Schmidt apply suntan lotion on his mustache. I loved that Nick felt responsible for Schmidt’s mustache. That if he had been home, that mustache never would have happened. At the end of the episode, Schmidt finally comes to his senses, and let’s Nick shave off his mustache. That scene was so good because everyone was together in the bathroom, witnessing Nick shave off Schmidt’s mustache. Ah, so satisfying.

Schmidt & Cece

We finally get to see Schmidt and Cece as parents, and they’re having their ups and downs. Ruth is super cute, but I’m not sure what I think about her yet as a character. Having her say “daddy’s butt,” wasn’t that comical to me and it felt out-of-place because there was no explanation about why she was saying it. I felt like we could have been introduced to her better. We could have seen how she had taken on traits from her parents and made that into some comical scenes. I think the writer’s need to develop her personality more, if we’re going to be seeing her in all the episodes. As for Schmidt and Cece, I thought the fake out with Cece looking like she was having an affair with Winston was also weirdly not needed. But I did enjoy seeing them struggle to create the best birthday party for their daughter. The flashbacks to Ruth’s past parties were so funny and Jess’s line about Schmidt making “Pochahummus,” had me rolling. It was also slightly bazaar that after giving the parents at the party, alcohol, they started acting like wild animals, but I guess the writer’s needed something to create drama at the party. It quickly turned into a frat party, which in real life, wouldn’t have happened. One thing I wished would have happened more though, was for Schmidt and Cece to interact more. I wanted to know a little more about what happened within those three years, besides failing at planning birthday parties.

Winston & Aly

I feel like Winston and Aly get better and better with each episode. They are so in love and Winston worships Aly in the sweetest ways. We see that Aly is pregnant, and she is hilarious because she’s still trying to be independent and strong, and won’t ask for help, even though she’s suffering from body aches. The pregnancy photo storyline was weak to me at first, but towards the end, when Aly realizes that she’s beautiful as a pregnant woman and should be pampered, I thought the photos had so much meaning after all. I loved that Aly realized that she was carrying the beginnings of their family and that something big was happening in their life. And Winston knew that too. He noticed also, how beautiful Aly is as a pregnant woman and that she should be pampered. They are serious relationship goals.

Also… interesting that at the end of the episode, we see that there is new management in the loft’s building complex. I guess that’s a little hint about how the show might be ending. We’ve seen in previews, that the gang start boxing up everything in the loft, so we might have a slight Friends situation, where the gang leave the loft behind at the final episode.