New Girl & Brooklyn 99's Crossover Episode Created A Damon Wayans Plot Hole

The sitcom New Girl had a crossover with Brooklyn Nine-Nine in season 6, which ended up creating a plot hole through Damon Wayans Jr.’s characters in both shows. Created by Elizabeth Meriwether, New Girl made its debut on Fox in 2011, and after the characters embarked on adventures and developed relationships within apartment 4D, the show came to an end in 2018 after New Girl season 7 concluded.

New Girl follows Jess Day (Zooey Deschanel), a young teacher who, after discovering that her boyfriend was cheating on her, moved into a loft with three strangers she found on the internet. When Jess first arrived at the loft, she met Coach (Damon Wayans Jr), who left after the pilot episode and was replaced by Winston (Lamorne Morris). After a not-so-smooth period of adjustment from all parts, Jess ended up being very close to her roommates Schmidt (Max Greenfield), Nick Miller (Jake Johnson), and the aforementioned Winston, with her best friend Cece (Hannah Simone) also joining the fun on occasion.

Related: New Girl: Why Winston Replaced Coach After The Pilot

Although Damon Wayans Jr. returned to New Girl in season 3 and left at the end of season 4, his presence in the show was not constant, making guest appearances through seasons 5 to 7. Despite this, New Girl never forgot about Coach, with the characters mentioning him from time to time. However, New Girl and Brooklyn Nine-Nine (both Fox shows at the time) had crossover episodes, which created a plot hole in Coach's existence. This crossover event took place in both shows: first in Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s episode “The Night Shift,” and immediately after in New Girl’s episode “Homecoming.” The show's characters crossed paths when Jess and the group left California and travel to New York. Jess met Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg) and helped him with a case, while Nick and Winston encountered Charles (Joe Lo Truglio) and Nikolaj (Antonio Raul Corbo) in a subway station. Coach even makes a surprise appearance in the episode, running into his friends. These events would not be a problem if only Damon Wayans Jr. did not have a role in Brooklyn Nine-Nine as well.


In the Brooklyn Nine-Nine episode “The 9-8,” Wayans Jr. played Jake's old partner Stevie Schillens. The two reunited when the 98th precinct, where Stevie works, had to temporarily relocate to the 99th precinct. The two joined forces to trail a known criminal, but Stevie's misstep derailed the operation. Charles then discovered that Stevie has planted evidence to falsely arrest the suspect. Jake and Charles ended up arresting Stevie and driving the 98th precinct away, and that's the last Brooklyn Nine-Nine audiences saw of him.

These crossover episodes confirmed that New Girl and Brooklyn Nine-Nine are part of the same universe,  but Wayans Jr. played two different roles. Since this coincidence was never addressed by New Girl nor Brooklyn Nine-Nine after the crossover, it might be up to viewers to come up with possible explanations. Of course, this is not the first plot hole in New Girl, nor the only example of casting choices impacting a show's continuity. At least it’s not one that affects the arcs of the characters or the plot of the episode — and it makes for a good piece of trivia.

Next: New Girl's Original Coach Plan Would've Been Very Different (& Worse)

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