Tuesday Must Watch: Premiere night on FOX – NEW GIRL, BEN AND KATE, NEW GIRL (again), THE MINDY PROJECT!

Settle in for a solid 2 hours of comedy tonight on FOX, starting at 8/7c with the much anticipated return of all new NEW GIRL, followed by my choice for favorite comedy of the year BEN AND KATE, another all new episode of NEW GIRL, and the premiere of my second-favorite comedy of the year (grading on a curve) THE MINDY PROJECT.

When we left Jess and her friends at the end of NEW GIRL season 1, Schmidt was rocking that penis cast, he and CeCe weren’t together any more, Nick wasn’t living with Caroline, Winston was loving life, and Jess was trying to find love and happiness.  The first episode back brings our gang together to celebrate the Schmidt’s reproductive-organ-freedom – he throws himself a “rebranding” party at Nick’s bar.  Jess, against Nick’s advice, volunteers to be a shot girl alongside a very, very jaded Parker Posey whose been a shot-girl forever.  It was just so much fun to have the gang back together, even if CeCe has a new guy, and Schmidt isn’t quite ready to accept that.  What worked last season continues to work this season, and the show remains 100% at the top of my must watch list, indefinitely.  The second episode, which finds Jess accidentally becoming a woman named Katie, dating a ridiculously handsome David Walton, accidentally dating the wrong beer guy (Josh Gad – perfectly cast), and just being all around awesome.  Elsewhere, Nick meets a guy named Nick, and his world spins out of control.  The show is firing on all cylinders, with no signs of a sophomore slump!

Between two NEW GIRLS, be sure to check out BEN AND KATE, starring Dakota Johnson (her mom is Melanie Griffith and her dad is Don Johnson, y’all) as Kate and Academy Award Winner (screenwriting) Nat Faxon as her brother Ben.  Ben is a ne’er-do-well who finds himself back in town, on a quest to profess his undying love for the woman who left him years ago.  When things go as expected (read: not well), he decides that maybe he should stick around for a while.  With a cast of characters that includes Lucy Punch as the AMAZING B.J. (Kate’s boozy and outrageous best friend), and the adorable Maggie Elizabeth Jones as Kate’s daughter Maddie, the show is incredibly charming, and full of equal parts humor and love.  It’s earned a season pass way before I even need to watch a second episode!

Ending the night after the “Katie” episode of NEW GIRL is Mindy Kaling’s new show THE MINDY PROJECT.  The show isn’t high on my list of favorites this fall, but due to the overwhelming lack of good comedy that’s being offered this fall, it has the underwhelming distinction of being high on my list of comedies!  Kaling stars as an OBGYN who has her professional life in order but who can’t handle her personal life to, well, save her life.  After a drunken escapade at her ex’s wedding gets her thrown in jail, she decides to take stock of her life, and actually put effort into finding Mr Right, wherever he may be.  Anna Camp was woefully underused in the pilot, and Chris Messina is fun, but the show seemed too clinical for me – here’s where a joke should be, “I’m talking fast and trying to be charming, so this is funny” type dialogue – I’m holding out hope for a second episode, to see if it settles down, but for now, I’m saying to tread with caution!

Don’t forget – RAISING HOPE’s season 3 premiere is available online now (here), and it officially joins the lineup on FOX next Tuesday, October 2. 

Will you be watching FOX tonight?