The third season of Fox’s “New Girl” has been, according to executive producer Liz Meriwether, a series of big swings. Schmidt (Max Greenfield) two-timed Cece (Hannah Simone). Coach (Damon Wayans, Jr.) returned. Jess (Zooey Deschanel) and Nick (Jake Johnson) got together.
“I think we’re always trying to push what we can do with the characters,” Meriwether said in a conference call Monday with reporters. So the swings will keep coming as New Girl closes out 2013 with three new episodes beginning tonight (9/8c) with an episode that finds Coach and Cece going on a date.
Obviously, this causes quite a bit of stress for Schmidt. “We thought it was sort of interesting to have this new character come in and not really understand all the back story between Cece and Schmidt and kind of swoop in and take her out on a date,” Meriwether said.
But fret not, Schmidt fans, Cece and Coach probably won’t embark on a big romance. “I think that Cece is just wanting to get back out there and go on a date with a really hot guy. So I think that’s kind of what’s going on in her head,” Meriwether said.
While romance may not blossom, Wayans, who rejoined the show this season after appearing in the pilot, will be on “New Girl” for the remainder of the season. “We are so happy to have him back,” Meriwether said. “He just fits in perfectly. It’s been a really fun thing to have him back on the show.”
Watch a Preview of Tuesday’s New Episode of “New Girl”:
Coach isn’t the only character sticking around. Meriwether confessed that she loves writing for Winston’s (Lamorne Morris) new cat Ferguson. Nick will stage something of an intervention for Winston because he fears Winston is becoming a little too attached to his feline friend. “Nick is worried that Winston has stopped putting himself out there with women,” Meriwether explained.
The only relationship that is going well this season is Nick and Jess’ burgeoning romance. While Meriwether said having the two characters together changed the DNA of the series, it was important to her that Nick and Jess did not get stuck in the break up/make up cycle. “We really wanted to invest in the relationship and see what would actually happen between them,” she said. “And there’s definitely been some challenges because we used to have that tension and conflict just baked into the series. But I think there’s new, deeper conflicts which are if they’re going to be together and some of the things they got away with in the past, they’ll have to deal with.”
The series will take its biggest swing yet when it airs after the Super Bowl in February. “It’s so exciting and we’re thrilled and so happy to get the chance to show the show to this massive audience and definitely, like a little bit nervous about it, but in a good way,” she said. “We’ve been working on the story for about a month. We’re going to shoot it in December. It’s a fun group-centric episode. The group gets invited to a big fancy party and it’s sort of all of them at this party together and I can’t say more than that. We’re still working on getting some exciting people in the show.”
“New Girl” airs Tuesday at 9/8c on FOX.