26 Days of Thanksgiving Episodes: Thanksgiving (New Girl)


We’re counting down the days to Thanksgiving by looking at a variety of Thanksgiving-themed TV episodes. Thanksgiving episodes are all different, but they have lots of tropes in common. Today we’re looking at the New Girl episode “Thanksgiving.”

Basic Info

Directed by: Miguel Arteta

Written by: Berkley Johnson

Episode Number: Season 1, Episode 6

Where to Watch It: Netflix

Found Family

This is the roomies first Thanksgiving together. Nick, Schmidt and Winston want to just hang out, but Jess insists on a Thanksgiving dinner. She has an ulterior motive since she’s invited a boy she likes named Paul, but she ends up also getting closer to her roommates.


Jess insists on getting a turkey, which she names Hank Sgiving. When she realizes how in over her head she is making the meal, she asks Schmidt for help. She says that if he helps cook the meal, she’ll invite Cece over. He agrees but it turns out he has a lot of control issues in the kitchen, so he insists on doing everything. He tells Jess, “I don’t want to hear ‘Schmidt, Schmidt, you’re using too much tarragon’ because I’m not.”

It turns out, Cece is super into Schmidt’s control issues and starts trying to push him to yell at her by putting her unwashed hands in everything.

They encounter problems when the turkey is big to fit in the oven. Schmidt jokes, “We’ve all been here, right?” They try putting it in the dryer to defrost instead.

Nick and Paul have an ongoing argument about whether the drinks they have are pumpkin ales or pumpkin lagers.

The turkey ends up getting burned and filling the apartment with smoke. Paul shows with an appreciative guy he is by saying that despite this problem, he still wants to eat the food Schmidt spent all day making. However, they encounter a bigger problem when they relocate to a neighbor’s apartment, only to discover her dead body in one of the rooms.

The roommates accept that Thanksgiving dinner is officially ruined and are still hungry when they go to Best Buy to line up for Black Friday. Paul brings them turkey subs to eat in line.


Nick, Schmidt and Winston plan to just hang out and watch football before Jess insists on the dinner. Later, they watch football with Paul, who refers to half time as “intermission.”


Paul works with Jess at the elementary school, where he wrote and directed a play about the first Thanksgiving.


About Author

Pop Culture Spin Managing Editor Lenny Burnham is a writer/comedian in New York City. He hosts the podcast The Filmographers.

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