All of New Girl’s characters have their quirks and moments that make them truly special. But there have been certain times over the show’s run where Schmidt has hit it out of the park, delivering some of the most absurd belly laughs that the show has ever seen. Actor Max Greenfield has cultivated a personality that is both deep and outrageous, allowing viewers to feel like Schmidt is an old friend, even though sometimes he can seem like a total cartoon. So, though other characters certainly have their scene-stealing moments too (and like our own children, we love them all equally), here are some examples that proved Schmidt was the funniest character on New Girl.
16. The Plethora Of Times He Added To The Douchebag Jar
Schmidt’s roommates immediately knew they had to do something to reign in his “douchebag” tendencies, and the jar was the perfect way to do it. Anytime he decided to speak about a woman in a less than favorable way, perhaps, or be a little too particular with the motif of the apartment or the way his clothes fit him, he was forced to put money into the Douchebag Jar. The penalties even had varying levels of severity, so he had to keep on his toes — his violations could run him anywhere from a few bucks to all the cash in his wallet, and those decisions were at the mercy of his friends.
15. When His First Time With Elizabeth Doesn’t Go As Planned
This scene haunts my dreams. Back in college, Schmidt was just a dorky, inexperienced undergrad trying to seem cool to the rest of his peers. Relatable. Unfortunately, when it came time to have sex for the first time with his girlfriend, Elizabeth, he got it in his mind that he needed way, way, waaaaaay more lube than he actually did. I mean, who on Earth could ever make this error on such a large scale? It was an incredibly unfortunate jaunt, getting the sticky substance everywhere, including in the eyes of both participants. The best part is that a horrified Nick was in the room for the whole thing, unbeknownst to the couple.
14. He Wouldn’t Stop Chilling In A Tiny Kimono
Schmidt’s tiny kimono is a mood, let me tell you. Make fun of him all you want, but he rocks that thing, and I wish my legs looked half as good as his do in that teeny, tiny garment. The piece obviously gets him plenty of grief from Nick and Winston as he bursts onto the scene. “Friday night, gentlemen,” he says in Schmidt’s trademark dramatic voice. “It’s on. It’s on and poppin’ up in here.” Nick is disgusted, as Nick tends to be, and asks him incredulously what happened to him. Well, I’ll tell you, Nick. Fashion. Fashion happened to him.
13. When He Turns Into A Hippie
Schmidt’s roommates frequently wonder why he can never seem to just chill out and let loose, but in one episode, maybe they need to be careful what they wish for. After Jess realizes Schmidt does all the housework in the loft and urges him to calm down and take some time for himself, Schmidt ends up on the beach, in clothes he usually wouldn’t be caught dead anywhere in the vicinity of, and holding a drum. The roommates realize that Schmidt’s uptight attitude is a big part of what keeps their home lives functioning smoothly, and they head back to retrieve him and turn him back into the man he used to be.
12. When He Pretends To Be A Romney
It’s really not at all surprising that Schmidt would attempt to pass himself off as a member of one of the country’s most notable political families in order to impress girls, and that’s exactly what he does. He pulls it off well for a while, displaying a vast knowledge of the lives of both Mitt Romney and the rest of his family members, in a way that’s both impressive and pretty troubling. He also has no shortage of fancy suits and hair gel, making him an easy pass for a famous politician’s son. It might not have lasted too long, but it was certainly a hilarious stint.
11. When He Freaks Over Jess’s Furniture In The Loft
Schmidt has carefully put together the apartment that he can be happy with, and when people try to integrate new furniture and new decorations into that existing aesthetic, he doesn’t handle it well. This is most evident when Jess tries to bring home some pieces she’s found in more interesting and unique places than a catalog or a fancy furniture store, and Schmidt loses his mind. He eventually damages one cabinet she wants to put in the kitchen, and the two have one of their biggest blow-ups ever over Schmidt’s inability to adapt. It’s definitely a legitimate conflict between the two of them, but it’s also hilarious to watch Schmidt squirm.
10. When He Was Missing His Best Accessories
This goes along with the Douchebag Jar, as these missing accessories are some of the reasons Schmidt had to put money in the jar to begin with. In a hilarious montage used to highlight the jar, Schmidt asks the roommates if they’ve seen any of his driving moccasins, his “good” peacoat, suggesting he has an arsenal of mediocre ones, his sharkskin laptop sleeve, his croquet cleats, and his “other” timepiece. It literally brings tears to my eyes getting through all these absurd riffs, some of which very well may have been improvised, and it perfectly sums up how high-maintenance Schmidt can be.
9. His Pronunciation Of And Love For Chutney
Chutney, for those unfamiliar, is an Indian sauce usually made with plenty of spices, fruits, and/or vegetables, but Schmidt has a ton of uses for it that might go outside the realm of what everyday people choose to do. “I love mango chutney. Really any kind of chutney,” he tells Winston and Cece. Now, it’s not exactly funny on its own that he has an affinity for chutney — it’s really how he pronounces it. Chut-en-y, putting a new emphasis on a syllable where many might not pronounce it, making it even more pretentious and completely in-character for Schmidt.
8. When He Couldn’t Stand Youths
This is a scene that produced the greatest reaction GIFs of all time. Schmidt is very concerned with neighborhoods that are inhabited by young people, or as he not-so-lovingly refers to them: youths! The soft “th” somehow makes it even funnier, though I’m not sure why, and it’s clear that Schmidt would never be caught dead in a neighborhood filled with children, or perhaps even worse, teenagers. This outlook perfectly encapsulates that, though Schmidt wants to be accepted by the cool, young people of society, he certainly thinks of himself as an adult, and doesn’t want to deal with any shenanigans.
7. When He Enforced A Dress Code At Ruth’s Birthday
This happened in one of New Girl’s most recent episodes, during which Schmidt was attempting to pull off one of the greatest birthday parties any child has ever seen. Of course, in true Schmidt fashion, he apparently selected a dress code that not only the parents and friends had to follow, but also the children. He hilariously zips off camera after telling Cece and Jess that he needs to talk to a toddler who apparently “doesn’t understand the meaning of upscale casual” attire. Leave it to Schmidt to put an insane pressure on himself for a kid’s birthday party, and also expect even the tiniest of attendees to follow the rules.
6. His Jokes Toward Cece’s GED Studying
Schmidt is totally supportive of Cece’s education in a very sweet way, but one joke about her smarts really hits me in a way that I can’t adequately express. In the episode with the “honey roast,” during which Nick and Jess are broken up but haven’t told their friends yet, Schmidt goes on a hilarious riff. “Jess! Are you pregnant? … I feel like I made it weird with the pregnancy thing. Did I make it weird with the pregnancy thing? Because I feel like I did. I feel like in my heart that was the wrong thing to say, especially to two women who are sitting alone in a room together,” he continues rambling about how he doesn’t know where they are with their lives, and then hits Cece with: “You can probably barely spell pregnancy!”
5. When He Had Way Too Many Questions About Sex
Considering how experienced Schmidt becomes later in his life, his lack of sex expertise is extremely apparent when he’s Nick’s roommate in college. In preparation, he has a ton of questions and not all of them make a ton of sense. “Does it hurt for the guys? If I pee while it’s happening, will she die? How many minutes before sex is it OK to eat? In terms of lubricant, do I put a small amount everywhere, or do I use a large amount in a smaller area?” Nick, though he was eager to help before, pretty quickly tells the youngster that he’s harshing his vibe, and Schmidt is sent off into the sunset, probably still with lingering questions.
4. When He Was Worried He Couldn’t Fit In With Young People
During season two, when new neighbors move into the gang’s apartment building, Schmidt is extremely eager to befriend these twentysomethings. He’s extremely worried that the kids won’t find him fun or cool, and it turns out that they aren’t really huge fans of him. Nick and Winston, in the meantime, try to make him feel like he’s old, making him even more insecure and end up finding him in a way-too-trendy scarf. In the end, he comes to peace with the fact that he’s not 23 anymore, and he seems to be OK with that, despite his constant need for approval.
3. When He’s SO Particular About His Bathing Routine
Schmidt is horrified, to say the least, that he has to share a shower and a bathroom with the entire apartment, and that’s apparent when his towel kept getting wet. “Damp! Damn it. Everybody, bathroom, now. Is someone playing a joke on me? Why is my towel still wet?” Nick tells him that the damp towel in question is not, in fact, his towel, but that it’s Nick’s. Schmidt insists that Nick’s towel is the red one, not the one they’re talking about, and Nick says he’s never used the red towel in his life. Schmidt slowly realizes that he and Nick have been drying themselves with the same towel for an undetermined amount of time, and it does NOT go over well.
2. His Pep Talk In The Mirror
In this moment, Schmidt is all of us. As he prepares himself for his encounter with Cece, in which he prepares to tell her that he’s been missing her, he gazes into his own eyes in the mirror and practices exactly what he’s going to say to her. It’s a silly moment, but also an incredibly relatable one. So, next time you feel silly for practicing a big speech in the mirror, just remember that even the most put-together people in this world, Schmidt included, have to give themselves a private and personal pep talk before attempting a bold move of some kind.
1. When He Wants Nick To Accept His Mustache
Again, a moment in the last batch of episodes makes the list. When Nick and Jess return from a book tour, they arrive at Schmidt and Cece’s daughter’s birthday party to the realization that Schmidt now has a pretty ill-advised mustache. Nick is horrified and berates Winston, saying that if he had kept Schmidt in line like Nick would have done, this would never have happened. Schmidt, meanwhile, fishes for compliments, desperately wanting Nick to approve of the mustache and brushing off any bad comments that Nick might lob at him. In the end, Nick is honest that he hates the mustache, and Schmidt lets him shave it, like a good friend.