The Mindy Project Review: Rom-com-plete Me

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As I sat down to watch the premiere of The Mindy Project, I reminded myself of other comedy pilots I've viewed that have taught me to not pass judgment too quickly. 

Success in this genre is so dependent on the chemistry and timing between the cast members, two things that can take a few episodes to solidify. However, while the pilot may have lacked a unique title, it was anything but short on laughs and charm.

Meet Mindy Lahiri, an Ivy League educated OB/GYN who seemingly lives her life according to the lessons she has learned over a lifetime spent watching romantic comedies. Her rom-com references are understandably dated but her nods to things like Downton Abbey, spinning classes and Occupy Wall Street did well to show she is most definitely in touch with what is current.

The Mindy Project Stars

While it is unclear if appearances by well-known funny men like Bill Hader and Ed Helms will be a reoccurring event, the two male doctors we found Mindy sharing the lounge with showed some talent in their own right. Jeremy - played by Ed Weeks - came across as a blend of Hugh Grant and Friends character Joey Tribbiani.

He is part of the cycle Mindy is trying to break free of, but he also seemed to be a good sounding board for her many issues.

Daniel Castellano (Chris Messina), on the other hand, is anything but a shoulder to cry on, presenting the biggest competition to Mindy in her professional life while engaging in an ongoing exchange of taunts. 

Other than Kaling, Messina delivered the most laughs of the episode as he educated Mindy on the proper parlance when speaking about Bruce Springsteen or complained about the doctor's lounge becoming like a highway rest stop.

Mindy may be sleeping with Jeremy to stroke her fragile ego, but it was with Daniel where we saw the most sexual tension. Messina showed that same sharp tongue he displayed while on The Newsroom when he suggested Mindy could stand to lose 15 pounds after she made a dig about his ex-wife in what was the one scene that really brought the light and bubbly pace of the show to a halt.

He did prove he is capable of flattery, though, when he complimented Mindy on her eventual choice of first date dress and later praised her breach delivery. Their relationship will be one to watch, as he seemed to appeal to her when he described himself as the kind of guy to take on burglars and stand by her side in the delivery room. Daniel no doubt was hurt by his marriage's failure, as was Mindy when her former flame dumped her for the Serbian bagel girl... so before these two can come together they have to first make projects of themselves and fix what is causing them each pain and confusion.

Mindy's life certainly is not only about relationships, as we saw when she left what was a promising date with Dennis (Ed Helms) to go and deliver a baby. I very much liked her Clark Kent like transformation from socialite to super-doc when she shed the heels and thong for sneakers and scrubs.

Despite purposely turning on the pilot with my expectations low, I found myself texting friends and family alike to tell them there was a new sitcom they need to check out. Kaling has had the Midas Touch in her short but highly successful career and while tonight's premiere was just the first installment, I think this new project will turn to gold as well.

Be sure to check out and rank the best of The Mindy Project quotes from tonight and let us know what you thought of the premiere.


Editor Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.8 / 5.0 (106 Votes)
C f ohara

Moving on...@Jen, re. typos...while I hate having them pointed out, TY very much for doing so on this occasion. seeing how I grew up in N.J. I should be flogged, i should be purged, for misspelling the Boss's last name. I have since fixed it and am glad you liked the review despite the oversight. With regard to Ben & Kate, while I don't make these decisions, I'll be sure to run it up the flagpole as a show we should consider covering.

C f ohara

@Eludium, I'm a guy. The one who wrote the review and a sucker for rom-coms. Based on your comments, would it be safe to say you are also a hater of shows like Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm? Not sure how old you are but shows like this have been around for a long time, i.e. Roseanne or even I Love Lucy. The fact that Kaling is so heavily involved is a testament to her talent not a strike against her or the industry. As for your comment about what she must have done to get this project green lit, come on man. Now you just sound sexist and obtuse. What did she do? Her work on The Office comes to mind. As for her looks, like @joanna said to each his own but it's amusing to me that a guy posting under an assumed name and using Marvin the Martian as his icon is so critical. At least she puts herself out there. I did not think Kaling came off as high on herself at all. She even went as far as to write in not one but two jokes about her weight. Critique the show all you want but leave the more personal stuff out if you want people to hear you. Hate the game not the playa.


To Eludium, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I think Mindy looked fine in the pilot. It's nice seeing someone not super skinny as the headliner for a show. And she's supposed to be over the top by the way. Oh, I might as well add that I LOVED the pilot!! I hope the show doesn't get cancelled.

Eludium q36

Well, as the only guy commenter so far, this is a throwaway. Mindy's self-indulgence is unprecented: The Mindy Project, created by Mindy Kaling, starring Mindy Kaling, written by MK, executive producer MK, I'm baffled she conceded the director role to someone else! She's not attractive, has no charisma, and I cannot imagine what this girl did for someone to green-light this study in celebrity narcissism. Seriously, her own self-admiration is only outdone by the grating and gratuitous celebrity name-dropping she buries us with. This show isn't sponsored by the Fords and Tides, it's sponsored by Hollywood agents! This show is everything that's wrong with Hollywood and it can't be axed soon enough. Sorry gals.


Hate to point out typos, but being a huge Springsteen fan, you spelled his name wrong! I liked the show though, so I like your review!


Where's the review for BEN AND KATE? I LOVED THAT PREMIERE! I really, really liked The Mindy Project too, so can't wait to see more. But seriously, RECAP BEN & KATE!


I loved the Mindy Project Pilot! It's very smart and I laughed a lot. MIndy is such a likable character! Looking so forward to more episodes!


I definitely loved it. I think Mndy Kaling is one exceptional comedian along the types of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. I think she is a much more likeable character than Jess in New Girl. The show is funny without being too comedic. There is substance behind it and the chemistry between her and that Messina guy is really good! Will be watching the next episode for sure!

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The Mindy Project Season 1 Episode 1 Quotes

After four vodka sodas I realized, I had something to say.


Daniel Castellano, I'm the man that is going to take a person out of you. I don't take that responsibility lightly okay?