May 28 2017 10:00am

New Girl Nick and Jess: An Adorkable Timeline

New Girl's Nick & Jess

Note: This post contains spoilers for all-aired episodes of New Girl—particularly focused around the Jess/Nick courtship. 

Right from the start, when Jess moves in with Nick and the gang, in “Pilot,” we see the seeds of a beautiful more-than-friendship. Nick, reeling from the effects of his own breakup, will do anything for his friends, even the brand new one who’s crying over Dirty Dancing on his couch. He turns off the TV and drags Jess out to a bar. Jess encourages him to be more in touch with his feelings, lest he end up alone and full of regret. Nick responds with a sarcastic comment about becoming more like Jess, but, at the end of the night, it’s Jess who’s chatting up a new likely prospect, while Nick texts his ex, Caroline.

In “Wedding,” Jess accompanies Nick to a wedding, to make Caroline jealous, and it works. The two share a fake kiss, and Caroline flirts with Nick again, but also reveals she has a new boyfriend. Embarrassed, Nick hides in a photo booth until Jess coaxes him out. He repays Jess for her friendship by dragging her onto the dance floor, where they do the chicken dance and Caroline is the last thing on Nick’s mind. Nick and Jess both see each other naked (though not at the same time) in “Naked.” In “Cece Crashes,” Cece tells Jess that a man’s feet point at what he wants. Later, when Jess and Nick brush their teeth in the communal bathroom, their feet point at each other.

SEE ALSO: New Girl’s Nick and Jess Bring the Swoon

Jess tackles Nick during a football game in “Injury,” and the resulting doctor visit leads to Nick’s cancer scare. The two spend the night before Nick’s test results alone on the beach together. Nick admits he likes Jess and is glad she’s around. They fall asleep next to each other, and agree, in the morning, that nothing happened.

As Season 2 opens, Nick comforts an unemployed Jess, who begins hanging out at Nick’s bar, and dating an older version of Nick himself. Present Nick is not okay with this, and takes the advice of his future self to make Jess an old-fashioned, in apology for a future wrong. Jess gives future forgiveness. “Fluffer” sends the pair on a pretend date, but Nick is wowed by a dressed-up Jess, and disappointed when Jess leaves to be with her casual hookup. Nick later accuses Jess of treating him as her boyfriend without the rewards, and both of them admit they’ve thought of rewards. Nick builds Jess a dresser, which Winston says is a sign they will one day share it.

The big first kiss comes in “Cooler,” when an impromptu game of True American requires Nick to kiss Jess, as a penalty...but he won’t. Nick literally climbs out of a window to avoid kissing Jess, because their first kiss can’t be like that. What it is, however, is the spontaneous and passionate lip-lock he lays on her later that evening as Jess is headed for bed. “Table 34” brings the aftermath. Nick punches the wall, then panic-moonwalks away from Jess’s open door. They later accompany Cece to an Indian marriage convention and disagree over whether the kiss meant anything. Nick finally admits that the kiss was like a damned fairy tale, and the two build the strongest table of all potential couples, a sign of a strong union, even if, as “Parking Spot” reveals, the male roommates signed a no-nail oath when Jess moved into the loft.

In “Quick-Hardening Caulk,” Jess, on pain medication, declares she wants to sleep with Nick. Little problem- Nick is sleeping with his new boss, but he still seems interested in Jess, and defines their relationship as “roomfriends.” He accuses Jess of being a golddigger, that she was only interested in him because he was doing better at work. Jess hotly denies this - she’s the worst golddigger in the world, and a heated argument turns to a heated embrace. Jess accompanies Nick to his father’s Elvis-themed funeral in “Chicago,” and fills in when the Elvis impersonator can’t perform.


Nick’s plan to ask Jess on a “First Date” falls to blabbering pieces, and Jess shows up at the fancy venue in casual dress, right in time for Russell, whom they both loved, to stumble in. Russell challenges them to write down what they are to each other on cards, and give them to him. After one look, he says this wasn’t a good idea, and leaves. Neither will tell the other what they wrote, and return home, to separate rooms. Their first time with each other comes only two episodes later, in “Virgins,”  when Nick  stops Jess’s elevator from leaving, and carries her, bridal-style, to his room,where they make love.

“Elaine’s Big Day” has Nick and Jess sabotage Cece’s first wedding, and break up for about a minute, literally, before getting back together. In “Coach,” Nick believes Jess that nothing happened with the naked male stripper in  her room, and orders said stripper out of his girlfriend’s bed. Jess’s “Birthday” proves that Nick can indeed plan things, and that he’s kept a coin he had in his pocket from the first night they kissed.  They declare their love for each other in “Prince,” and Nick admits, in “Exes,” that he fell for Jess the minute she first walked through his door. For Jess, though? Waaaaay later.  

It all comes crashing down in “Mars Landing,” where the pair break up because the only thing they have in common is that they love each other. They’ll go back to being friends, and console each other over the mutual breakup. It’s not  a “Clean Break” as the fate of the sex mug (which they used to indicate arousal without arousing suspicion) comes into question. Jess devotes herself to weird hobbies, Nick writes his first novel, and takes up with temporary roommate, Regan, but the story isn’t over.

SEE ALSO: 7 Reasons I Loved New Girl’s Nick and Jess (Ness)

On “Christmas Eve Eve,” Jess wants to be the best Secret Santa ever for Nick, and flies in Regan from Seattle, only to have Regan move back in, and get Nick a deal with a local bookstore to produce Nick’s book. While helping Nick prepare for his appearance at "Socalyalcon VI,” Jess realizes that she’s behaving like Nick’s girlfriend, then scurries off to her dad’s house in Portland.

“Five Stars for Beezus” could have worked as a series finale, as Nick’s first reading serves as a big black moment. A fan asks if two characters, whom Nick based on himself and Jess, will ever get together, and Nick answers they will not. They are too different, and it’s not going to happen. He realizes, too late, that Jess was in the audience after all, and that his answer broke her heart. It’s a series of close calls and missed connections as Nick races to catch Jess before she can move out of the loft, and, for a moment, he’s too late, but this is New Girl we’re talking about, and Nick once again intercepts an elevator, this time to tell Jess he loves her. When the doors open again, the pair are locked in an amorous embrace.

Where will the seventh and final season take Nick and Jess, besides three years into the future? We can’t wait to find out.

H&H Editor Picks:

6 Women’s Fiction Best Bets of March 2017

9 Romances H&H Reviewers Loved in April 2017

May 2017 Romance New Releases






Anna C. Bowling considers writing historical romance the best way to travel through time and make the voices in her head pay rent. She welcomes visitors to her blog, Typing with Wet Nails and to follow her at Twitter.

Subscribe to this conversation (must be logged in):
Post a comment