New Girl Somehow Overcomes Megan Fox's Hotness

Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Megan Fox is hot. That's a groundbreaking statement, I know. When I see Megan Fox on a screen, I acknowledge that there will be some reference of her renowned hotness. That was indeed the case on last night's New Girl. But the show actually managed to subvert expectations.

Fox plays Reagan a (hot) pharmaceutical sales rep who moves into the loft while Jess is away on jury duty (a.k.a. while Zooey Deschanel is away on maternity leave). The episode opens with Nick and Winston deciding that maybe it's time to give up on trying to find "magic" in romance and settle. But fate will see Nick reneging on that promise when he comes across bona fide hot person Reagan at a hospital. (A beer keg-lifting incident gives Nick a case of "old man back.") Reagan just happens to need a place to stay for the exact time that Jess is gone — ah, coincidences — so Nick butts in and invites her to live with them. Because this is TV, she agrees to take a look at what he's offering.

Reagan is a quick study. "You were a large child," she tells Schmidt. "You have a cat, don't you?" she asks Winston. When he responds, "How did you know?" She hits back without missing a beat, "It's very obvious." While examining Jess' room, where she's to live for the duration of her stay, Reagan notes that Jess' tote bags and yarn make her "racist against white people."

The one member of the group she's instantly warm toward is Cece. It turns out they know each other. They hooked up one summer at the MTV Beach House. (Reagan, like Fox, is bisexual.) When Schmidt, Cece's fiancé, hears this, he goes catatonic. This is where my eyes started to roll. Two hot women hooking up on a sitcom feels like a trope ripped from the early aughts. Wino and Rachel Green forever. (I have to commend the writers and Max Greenfield for the hilarity that is Schmidt processing this information: He air drums Nick Cannon's solo from Drumline.)

But it's actually not that Schmidt's overly titillated by the story or vaguely homophobic. "Are you freaking out because she hooked up with a woman? That's so boring," Reagan says. "No," Schmidt replies, "I completely appreciate the fluidity of sexuality. I'm basically a woman myself." Instead, Schmidt's worried that his life is turning into a rom-com, except Reagan's the heroine of the story, swooping in to steal Cece away at the last moment before her wedding, and he's the "Bridgette Wilson-Sampras." Nice Wedding Planner reference, New Girl writers.

Reagan does not turn out to be the Jennifer Lopez in this scenario. She sticks around and coaches Schmidt through his issues. What distinguishes Reagan from the rest of the New Girl characters is not her hotness, it's her self-assurance. The current loft residents are perpetual underachievers, or, in Schmidt's case, someone who overachieves to hide his insecurities. Jess is a magnet for romantic disasters and a total klutz.

The show's creator, Liz Meriwether, told Vulture that Reagan gave them an opportunity to explore different personality traits: "We do a lot of anxious, neurotic-people comedy, so it was nice to have this character who wasn’t going through all of those things." Reagan knows exactly what she wants and knows how to get it. She's the type of person who demands a "rain shower" in her living quarters.

Sure, Nick will continue to get goo-goo eyed over Reagan. She is, after all, really, really hot. But it's even better that the show has added a woman who is really, really in control.

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