English 1102: Television and Feminism

Dr. Casey Alane Wilson • Georgia Institute of Technology

Tag: thanksgiving

Thanksgiving with Jess: Themes in New Girl

This episode of ‘New Girl’  is centered on one of everyone’s favorite holiday: Thanksgiving. The theme of the episode is Jess and all her friends plus a new guy that she’s crushing on: Paul. By inviting Paul to their house, the day just turns into chaos. The episode goes over all the issues they have during the day such as Nick being irritated, all of the food preparation going wary (the turkey gets WAY too burned) and ends up with them finding a dead body in their neighbor’s house. Regardless of all of these scary and chaotic events, the group of friends still manage to have a meaningful and fun Thanksgiving day together.

Jess going all out for Paul and her roommates.

The show makes this argument by starting the episode with all of Jess’ roommates hating on Paul, but in the end, they all warm up to him and welcome him into their small family. This relates to the overall theme that despite issues and differences, people can still come together and enjoy a holiday together. This theme relates to the show as a whole because every episode, the characters have conflict but still manage to come together and realize their love and care for each other at the end of the day.

I think this episode, in particular, relates to a greater cultural meaning as it shows the importance of holiday’s, especially Thanksgiving, where in America it’s a holiday where you’re supposed to be thankful for the people regardless of the circumstances. Besides this, a lot of what happened in the episode was extreme, and would normally not occur in normal life, but it was done for humor purposes. Also, I have a feeling that Nick likes Jess, which I also think was the purpose of this episode – to overlay this fact. That is why I think Nick dealt with Paul, to make her happy. The things you do for someone you love are endless.

Gotta Love Thanksgiving!

Season 2, Episode 9 of Grey’s Anatomy is all about Thanksgiving. It’s pretty simple. This is a day where families typically get together, cook dinner, and eat. However, in Grey’s Anatomy, nothing is ever simple, and this episode reflects that by showing the complex, emotional, and trying day that the many surgeons, residents, and interns face.

Everyone has their own reasons to skip out on dinner. Meredith avoids the dinner because she believes her misery would drag everyone down. Alex didn’t pass his medical exams, and he doesn’t want to tell Izzie. Christina just wants to scrub in or get drunk. Meanwhile, Izzie is upset that she may have to celebrate a day she cherishes so much alone. Thanksgiving is just another complicated day in these surgical interns’ lives.

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Delicious, delicious dinner.

This episode supports the theme by showing everyone’s journeys throughout the day. Whether it’s performing surgery on a turkey, pretending “The Nazi” is giving them orders, or talking about cars, everyone spends the day differently. They all face their own struggles too. A day that’s supposed to be for them to all be together like a family ends up being just as complicated as every day in their lives. But, in the end, most of them meet up for Thanksgiving anyways and spend the rest of the night together. The next day, everything returns to its usual drama-filled chaos.

In this show, it seems like there isn’t a single day without drama, deaths, tension, and complications. This episode is no different. It’s just as messy as the rest. Even though this is a surgical drama with highly exaggerated conflicts, it reflects the fact that everyday life can be messy, complicated, and it doesn’t always go right. Using examples from the show, someone could end up at the hospital, have a miserable day, go to the bar instead of going to dinner, etc. These kinds of things happen.

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