The Mindy Project begins with a maybe slightly drunken speech, as so many things do. Dr. Mindy Lahiri (Mindy KalingÂ—show runner/writer/starÂ—busy lady) is sort of like a really competent and smart Bridget Jones. So not Bridget actually. At any rate, Mindy is an ob/gyn. She has a really soft heart and takes patients with no insurance, which is probably the kiss of death for a doctor, right? But she keeps doing it. It’s probably the most immediately likable thing about her.
Mindy explains to a police officer that she has always loved romantic comedies. So much so that Tom Hanks was her first boyfriend. So two years ago when she wound up getting stuck in an elevator with Tom (Bill Hader), she embraced it as a great “meet cute” story. She moved in with him two months later and thought she was Sandra Bullock. Except that three months ago he met the Serbian bagel girl from the hospital, fixed her teeth (he’s an oral surgeon), and married her. Which brings the story to the near present. Mindy is invited and goes, because why not? Gets super drunk, as you do, and toasts the happy couple with increasingly personal stories about Tom. Super uncomfortable for everyone.
After lurching out with a bottle of champagne, Mindy steals a bicycle and bikes into a pool. When a doll at the bottom of the pool talks to her and taunts her for being single at 31, Mindy decides that she is going to change her life. In the now though, she is arrested for drunk and disorderly behavior, and according to the awesomely wonderful deadpan officer (Carlease Burke), raping the peace.
What that change means is a bit unclear since she has spent the last few months hooking up with colleague Jeremy Reed (Ed Weeks), who is “Hugh Grant in About a Boy” according to Mindy and “Hugh Grant in real life” according to her friend Gwen Grandy (Anna Camp).
While Mindy can’t say no to Jeremy (he really is very cute), she has more of a hate/can’t stand kind of relationship with Daniel Castellano (Chris Messina). Daniel is something of an overachiever, and Mindy finds him annoyingly superior.
Gwen sets Mindy up on a blind date with Dennis (Ed Helms), a Wall Street guy. Mindy is very excited and previews her first date outfit for her office friends. It’s very shiny. Disco ball shiny. They’re very excited for her. Daniel is less complimentary. He tells her that it’s only appropriate if she’s dating Elton John, and even then only if it’s New Year’s. A little caustic that one.
But he also offers her some fairly good advice. Telling her that she should wear something tight, but with comfy shoes and to keep her appearance natural. Mindy apparently hears the Peanuts trombone though and reminds him that for all his advice, he’s divorced. He tells her that she’d look really great if she lost 15 pounds. Ouch. Jeremy swoops in to take advantage, but Mindy fights herself and wins. She goes on her date with Dennis, oh and she takes Daniel’s advice.
The date is…weirdly disastrous and yet successful until she tries to ignore a call from Max, the son of a patient. She finally leaves, but Dennis is completely confounded by her. So the likelihood of a second date? Eh. Especially since Ed Helms is still Andy on The Office.
After she delivers the baby of the non-insured patient, Mindy veges in the doctor’s lounge. She’s watching When Harry Met Sally when Daniel walks in. They sit and bond a bit. It’s kind of nice. And then Mindy goes home and hooks up with Jeremy. She maybe a work in progress, but that doesn’t mean she can’t enjoy herself along the way.
What did you think? Are you going to give the series a try?
Photo credit: The Mindy Project