'New Girl' Season 2, Episode 4: 'Neighbors' Recap
As the boys expected, when they come home, Jess is watching a TGIF marathon in her uniform from the new job at Casserole Shanty. She tries to impress them with her perfected Steve Urkel impression, but they’d be more impressed if she got a better job and quit lounging around.
A group of early twenty-somethings knocks, having moved in across the hall. They introduce themselves, and say they’re having a party so it might be a little noisy. Schmidt takes this for an invite, but the boy says it’ll be “young people.”
Schmidt is sure he misunderstood them. He checks his Real Life account, which gives him crazy good longevity. Winston checks his and realizes he should have died 4 years ago—or will only make it to 67. Nick likes getting older, it fits his personality.
Schmidt insists he is young and successful, and still growing, judging by his marks on the wall. “I’m like a Jewish Peter Pan.”
They all head to the party, Nick wearing Old Spice despite Schmidt’s insistence, but when they get there, it turns out it’s been downgraded to a chill hang. Nick and Winston leave immediately, Jess comes in with her casserole, and is well-received. They’re impressed she works at The Shanty, and say she’s just figuring it out, like them.
Jess knocks over popcorn, and does her Urkel impression. They don’t recognize it, and think she’s hilarious. Schmidt strikes out getting their interest. “That’s how she casse-rolls!”
Jess is finding, however, that she’s fitting in really well with this collection of people who are also looking for themselves. Also, she tries out “How rude!” and discovers it’s all new to them, too. Jess is explaining how nice it is to hang with them to Nick, only there’s one problem. They hate Schmidt. Nick says he’ll take care of it. Winston wants in on the prank, but Nick says he either underdoes it or overdoes it. Flashback to trying to prank a sleeping teacher; Winston’s idea is to hit her with a ski.
Nick’s pranks are beginning to work on Schmidt, who comes in, hips sore and achey. Nick has made the heel 1/8th inch shorter on every pair of his shoes. He goes off to pee in pitcher to pour on Schmidt’s bed so he thinks he is incontinent.
Schmidt and Jess are walking in the hallway, and the pants that Nick got Schmidt from the cleaner don’t fit right... they’re awful high. Jess tells them the young people hate him—they will change the subject every time he talks. They run into the young pack, and indeed, they do. They invite Jess to hang with them, and, after a long awkward pause, finally break and reluctantly invite Schmidt, who, hurt, pretends to take phone call to get out of it.
In their loft Nick is gutting Schmidt’s chair, and tells Winston he switched out Schmidt’s fiber pills. Jess comes home and sleeps on the couch, having been up 48 hours. Schmidt comes in, complaining about being constipated. Nick has him sit in the chair, where he sits down low, and Nick pretends that he’s blasting the television. Frightened, Schmidt checks himself on the wall, where it appears (Nick again) that he has shrunk. He begs Jess to help him be cool.
Winston, prompted by his short life span, goes into a board meeting at his work and announces that he wants to work there, follow his passion, not do all his menial tasks for the rest of his life.
Schmidt shows up at the young people’s loft in overshot outfit that Jess did not approve, and does burpees on the floor, but knocks over Jess’s beer. One of the boys says his mom can wash it for her, and the kids coo over her and the complexities of life.
“Oh, my God, you guys, are we the dish… un-washers??”
Jess realizes she can’t hang out with them anymore. She reveals the true Urkel on her phone and leaves.
Jess and Schmidt go home and fight about it, but she told him to stop trying so hard. He accuses her of giving up, and she asks if that’s what he thinks happened about her job. She didn’t give up, she was fired. She loved teaching. She liked hanging out and not being judged about not having a good job for once.
The young people shuffle over--they still want to hang out with Jess, until they realize Nick is “the old man from the stairs.”
Schmidt asks him why they don’t like him for being older. One of them says they don’t hate him for being old, but for being a viciously unbearable asshead. Schmidt is thrilled.
Winston comes home to announce he is now the producer of his own sports talk show. Which airs in the middle of the night—prime time for truckers!
Jess and Nick realize they need to get real jobs, especially when Nick reveals he’s spent well over a thousand dollars on pranking Schmidt. She tells her never to prank her—he says she’ll never see it coming.
Jess runs into Schmidt in the bathroom, dressed nicely to go to a tutoring job. Schmidt is struggling with low prescription contacts, and Nick has sewn a hunchback into his shirt—as he finally catches onto the prank, Winston comes in and hits him with a ski.