After six seasons and over one hundred episodes, Mindy Kaling’s “The Mindy Project” premiered its series finale on Hulu on Tuesday.
The ensemble rom-com saw the characters from boyfriend to boyfriend and girlfriend to girlfriend and husband to husband. It saw the characters from coast to coast and country to country and job to job. There were many changes within the series over the course of its five-year run, but one thing that always remained was its romantic nature at its core.
It was a true rom-com series for the ages, complete with a will-they/won’t-they for the ages. This is referring to Mindy (Kaling) and Danny (Chris Messina), of course.
Their romance had that slow build that all good rom-com romances do. They were co-workers who got on each other’s nerves, but opposites attracted and walls were steadily knocked down until the love boiled up so high that the only thing left to do was to tell each other how they felt. Or, even better, to show them with a passionate kiss in the back of an airplane. As was such with Mindy and Danny, which began their relationship.
Throughout the seasons, the duo really gave their relationship a chance, even getting engaged and having a baby, but their opposing views ended up pulling them apart. Until the series finale, that is. All great rom-coms must have great happy endings, this was theirs.
Mindy and Danny worked closely to make sure everything was set for his mom Annette’s (Rhea Perlman) double mastectomy, which helped reignite their spark.
Before the two could really explore their feelings again, Danny had to deal with his mom and Mindy had to attend Morgan (Ike Barinholtz) and Tamra’s (Xosha Roquemore) wedding.
During the ceremony, Mindy’s cell phone went off, with Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” as the ringtone, of course. She left the room to answer it, only to hear the good news from her money man that she didn’t have to sell the clinic because she had a “surprise investor.” To which she replied, in true Mindy fashion, “It’s not Mark Cuban is it? He has a restraining order against me.”
Alas, it was not Cuban, it was Danny.
A surprise indeed, she called him up to ask him about it.
“You want to own a piece of the practice so you can control me,” Mindy said to Danny. “Well, I am not going back to that. You didn’t even want me to start the business to begin with.”
He answered, “I get why you would think that, but let me explain. You helped so many people and it hasn’t affected you as a mom. I couldn’t see it back then, but I was wrong.”
For him to say he was sorry and about something that was one of the reasons why they broke up in the first place was a big deal. Plus, to show even more growth on Danny’s part, he was watching “Access Hollywood” while he was on the phone, which normally would’ve been something Mindy would’ve had to beg him to watch.
After the surprising call, Mindy went back to the wedding, as it was time for the reception. As the event went on, it came time for her toast to the now-married couple.
“…And maybe they weren’t right for each other then,” she said. “But somehow they are now. And that’s the funny thing about people changing. It happens so slowly. You don’t realize a person’s changed until you look at them and they’re not the person you thought they were.”
As Mindy said all of these words, it was clear that the words were both true for Morgan and Tamra, but also of Mindy and Danny. After saying these words and feeling their true meaning, she looked down at the bracelet she was wearing, which was one she had gotten from Danny and was his grandmother’s. The bracelet had an Italian word inscribed in it, but she never knew what it meant.
She decided it was time to find out and asked the crowd if anyone knew the language. Of course, Jeremy shot right up and said that he did.
He told her it meant “run,” which is exactly what she did after he said that, as she had somewhere more important to be.
Again to show how much the characters have grown, when Mindy wasn’t able to get a ride to leave the wedding, Morgan told her she could borrow his bike and instead of commenting on how she would never use something that he’d touched or that she doesn’t do any form of exercise, she simply thanked him and hopped on the bike to pedal off to where she needed to go.
She then ditched the bike to take the subway and then started to run when she couldn’t get a taxi. Yes, Mindy ran. And no, she wasn’t following an ice-cream truck, a donut truck or bear claw truck.
She stopped running only when she got to her destination: the hospital. She headed to Annette’s recovery room, but ran into Danny before she could enter.
He immediately spotted her wearing the bracelet he gave her and told her that his grandfather had given it to his grandmother to get her to run more. It all made sense now.
After that little revelation, Mindy went inside to see how Annette was doing. She said she was doing well and a few seconds of awkward silence followed until Danny, clearly not reading the situation correctly, mentioned that they could’ve just texted her that information and she left.
Once Mindy was out of the room, Danny’s brother, Richie (Max Minghella), told Danny that he’s an “idiot” and Annette followed that up by letting Danny know that Mindy clearly had left the wedding not to see her, but to see him.
“It was a romantic gesture, Danny,” Richie said.
As soon as those words left Richie’s mouth, Danny fled the room in search of Mindy. He found her, with her shoes off, lying on the floor in one of the break rooms, with her hand stuck up the vending machine slot, trying to get some snacks. He helped her get unstuck before they both finally got upright and the emotional Mindy/Danny reunion began.
Danny told her that he thought she might be at the hospital to actually tell him that she loved him again and that she wants to try again with him, to which he would’ve said that he’d like nothing more.
“I wasn’t gonna say that I love you again. I was gonna say that I never stopped loving you and I don’t think I ever will,” the romance-loving Mindy perfectly said.
Danny quickly replied with a kiss. He broke only for a second to ask her if she’s going to change her last name because he’s not doing “one of those joint names.”
“Can we just watch TV? We have the rest of our lives to argue,” Mindy replied.
Once again, he responded with a kiss. And then said, “Yeah, let’s watch TV.”
The sweet on-again couple sat down on the couch to cuddle up as they watched TV together, as the camera slowly began to pull away from them, farther and farther until it they were seen through the break room’s window and the world of Manhattan came into view. The end.
The end for Mindy and Danny, at least. That was the final scene of the series, but what happened for the rest of the characters in the episode?
Jeremy (Ed Weeks) found out his dad died, which was actually a relief to him as his dad was a “monster.” Still, he had issues to work through, which Anna (Rebecca Rittenhouse) helped him through.
Morgan and Tamra got married, which was the conclusion to their own quirky, but beautiful love story. They had a nice reception afterwards and in lieu of telling Tamra how he felt about her with a speech, Morgan showed her. In the form of dance. The song? Jason Derulo’s “Want to Want Me.”
Morgan might not be Diamond Danny, but he definitely proved he had some moves.
After a bit of a solo performance, Jeremy and Anna joined in for a full group choreographed number. Then, Beverly (Beth Grant) and Colette (Fortune Feimster) made their way to the dance floor and found their places in the lineup.
“What the hell? Is it everybody at work except for me?” Mindy said as she watched all of her co-workers dance it out, while she sat at the singles table.
It was a full ensemble dance and it was the perfect series finale production.
While fans will miss fun and funny performances like that, exceptional romantic journeys and great quotes like the ones Mindy said in the finale - “Middle age? I’m basically a teen mom, what are you talking about, Dot?” and “King James bible? Did Lebron write this?” - every rom-com has to come to an end at some point. At least this one was on Kaling’s terms and had the happily ever after all the characters deserved.
“The Mindy Project” series finale is now streaming on Hulu.
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