And Then There’s Cece
If you’re like me, New Girl has had you wrapped up in the sheer ridiculousness of the loft living cast and True American obsessed since its first season in 2011. There is no doubt that Jess, Nick, Schmidt, and Winston are dynamic characters each with their own satirical quirks. And then there’s Cece.
I used to think Cece was simply the straight man that every comedy needs, but throughout the 6 seasons, she has proven to represent a very unique and under-heard voice in society.
Cece is one of few contemporary depictions of young Indian American women attempting to navigate their cultural identity as first and second generation adults.
The show addresses her Indian identity without making it the core of her character. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.
Her Indian identity is barely brought up in the first few seasons, but as her character grows (especially romantically), she chooses to assume more of her “Indianness”.
Cece’s choice of an “arranged” over a “love” marriage, in the second season, is just one example of the relevant struggle that many young Indian Americans face as they straddle their two cultural identities in adulthood.
Despite my original perceptions, Cece does a lot more than bring stability and sanity to the main characters of New Girl. She brings to light an identity struggle that is often unheard by mainstream media, helping to fill the gaps and more accurately represent the experiences of first and second generation Indian Americans.