Mindy Kaling’s new show, The Mindy Project, is a delight. Perhaps uncharacteristically for its genre, the show is also a thrill a minute. Kaling employs elements of wit, charm and outright bawdy physical humor to allow her main character, Mindy Lahiri, to truly exist honestly within the construct of the show.
Lahiri is a thirty-one year old OB/GYN, whose unmatched love of romantic comedies has brought on some delusional expectations about love. Her earnest desire to love and be loved, however, implores the viewer to root for Lahiri. She can be imagined as a reincarnation of Bridget Jones – except much fancier and instead of laughing at her, we are laughing with her.
Unlike Jones, Lahiri is very expressive of what the world sees as her shortcomings. Lahiri’s interaction with others and her voiceovers serve as her “diary.” For example, she goes on a date with a guy named Dennis (Ed Helms). While on the date, she gets a call from a patient’s son. After regretfully accepting the phone call, she utters, “Do you know how hard it is for a chubby thirty-one year old woman to go on a date with a legit guy who majored in Economics at Duke?” When Dennis replies that he had not told Lahiri those things, she retorts, “I looked it up online, okay? Relax.”
Move over, Lena Dunham, Mindy Kaling might be sealing her spot as the voice of this generation. Her frankness knows no match – whether she’s on a date or in her office. At work, she is pitted against her main antagonist, Dr. Danny Castellano (Chris Messina). She strikes up charming friendships with the other members of the office, with the exception of Dr. Jeremy Reed (Ed Weeks). With him, Lahiri engages in an on-again, off-again flirtation and occasional late-night romp. Lahiri, much like her English-counterpart Bridget Jones, knows that her patterns must change in order to advance her life… but maybe not today.
Kaling also showcases quite a few talented supporting performers. Avid fans of The Office will recognize Zoey Jarman as Betsy Putch, an assistant in Lahiri’s office and Anna Camp, who plays Mindy’s best friend, Gwen. Rounding out the cast are Amanda Setton, Stephen Tobolowsky, Bill Hader and Richard Schiff.
You can watch The Mindy Project on Tuesdays on FOX at 9:30/8:30c. Follow Mindy Kaling on Twitter @mindykaling. Watch episode one below!
About the Author: Christine refuses to sing the made up "So good's" in public renditions of "Sweet Caroline" and will ask you at inappropriate times if it is okay for her to pet your dog. You can also follow her on Twitter: @bawdybynature.