‘New Girl’ Recap: “Single and Sufficient”

Ryan Aday

This week’s New Girl, episode three of season five, teaches us the value of being single and sufficient. The underlying arc of Jess and Nick’s ‘should they shouldn’t they’ takes an interesting twist as most of the characters venture to the great outdoors.


New Girl Single and Sufficient Jess and her group
Jess and her group Single and Sufficient change the tone of the camping trip

Schmidt and Cece are planning a couples camping trip with Winston and Aly. Winston and Ally spent the past three months apart and Winston informs them that they will be having intercourse 52 times on the trip. Cece and Schmidt decide that they need other company on the trip so they invite Jess. Jess agrees and asks if she could invite some friends. Before they answer, she has invited her new group on the trip.

We then learn that this new group helps single people stay single. Jess informs them of the group motto: “I’m Single, I’m Sufficient” which Schmidt immediately recognizes as ISIS. The group’s founder, Robby (Nelson Franklin), used to date Cece. Basically, the group is just five people who have nothing better to do.

Before they leave, Nick indicates that he will not attend the camping trip so he can write a new chapter in his book. A skeptical Schmidt reads the book and is taken aback by the depth and grittiness of the novel. When asked for feedback he simply utters, “No notes”.

On the camping trip, Aly and Winston spend the entire time in their room. They get to 13 times and both begin to realize that 52 is probably unrealistic. As they prepare to engage again, they both admit they need to slow down.

Robby presents as the first person she has interest in since Nick

Despite their motto, it soon becomes obvious that the singles group has very little interest in being single. Robby intervenes several times to ensure that some of the members do not engage in physical contact. However, during a rendition of Toto’s Africa at the campfire, he and Jess begin to develop some chemistry. This time, it’s the group who have to act to keep the pair apart. Robby admits to having feelings for Jess.

Back at home, Nick isn’t sure how to proceed without any feedback. He calls Schmidt and Winston several times but they are too busy to help. When Schmidt returns, Nick has finished a new chapter with a new character bearing a striking resemblance to Schmidt.

The final scene shows Jess heading out to lunch to read Nick’s novel. Robby is also at the restaurant and they have an awkward exchange. They sit at separate tables until Jess finally offers to sit with him while she reads. A hint of a spark is felt and we close.


Schmidt remains the funniest character on television. He always presents as predictably unpredictable and embraces his role as the show’s maestro. Jess and Robby showed good chemistry and Robby appeared more believable than in past episodes. New Girl fans will be very pleased with this offering.


  • Jess explaining the singles group’s goal of keeping people single
  • Robby and Jess performing Africa
  • Nick informing Schmidt that the new character is kind of a jerk and no one likes him

New Girl airs Tuesday nights on Fox at 8:30 pm PST/EST. Next week features a crossover episode with Brooklyn Nine-Nine. You can check out a complete recap of this week’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine here.

Ryan Aday
Ryan is a former college athlete with a degree in Communication from Point Loma University. He is also a 5-time Game Show Contestant (Incl. Wheel of Fortune) and decorated fantasy football player (Fantasy Football Evolution National Champion Runner-Up). Mr. Aday is kind to animals.
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