The Mindy Project 4×20 ‘The Greatest Date in the World’: Goodbye Marcus, hello Jody

Mindy Birthday

For the first few seasons, The Mindy Project was about a woman in search of romance. Not just any kind of romance: the endless, dramatic, heart wrenching love you see in the movies. She wanted the dream that romantic comedies laid out for her: an all consuming romance. Then she got it, and realized it wasn’t enough for her. The man she loved wanted her to give up her career, making the relationship devolve into harsh fights. Season 4B has been about watching Mindy move on from the movie-like romance she thought she’d have forever.

Mindy’s moving farther and farther away from the fairytale romance that she learned from the movies. Her passionate, movie-like romance collapsed, leaving her feeling guilty and depressed. For so long she built up the life she thought she would have, the life she saw in the movies she watched, and then had to live through it all falling down around her. Yes, she’s stronger for it, but she still has a lot of pain to deal with. She’s trying to raise her son, manage her businesses, and search for romance. But there’s a huge difference. Now she’s stopped searching for a larger than life romance, and is just searching for a meaningful, loving relationship.

Unfortunately for the audience and for Mindy, she won’t find that relationship with Marcus. Honestly, I was a little disappointed to see Marcus leave so quickly. He was a fun character: charming, funny, and with a great dating gimmick. I would have loved to see Mindy go on several more “greatest places” dates. However, it was nice to see Mindy grow even more over the course of the episode. She’s beyond being impressed with flashy dates and grand romantic gestures – now all she wants is someone she loves and is compatible with.

Source: Hulu

Source: Hulu

This leads to Jody and Mindy’s movie night at the end of the episode. It’s not an extravagant night, but neither seems to mind. Even though Jody dropped hints about how he wanted an elaborate birthday party, he’s happy with Mindy’s gift and spending the night watching Cars with her. (He really has changed, because the old Jody would have run out of the apartment screaming at the thought of watching an animated movie.)

On one hand, I’m starting to really warm up to the idea of Mindy and Jody as a couple. They’re beginning to have more chemistry, Jody has supported Mindy through the last couple of months, and Mindy has helped Jody grow as a person. The one thing they’re missing is banter – Mindy has had great jokes with all of her best boyfriends. She and Danny would have riffed on watching the movie, Casey would have some immature jokes, Duncan would have read way too deep into the movie (okay, technically Duncan wasn’t her boyfriend, but he was still one of my favorite love interests for how hilarious he was). Garrett Dillahunt and Mindy Kaling are getting better at the more dramatic moments, but they still don’t have the banter that Mindy and her previous boyfriends did. However, I’m starting to believe that they can. I’m starting to believe that Jody and Mindy might be the main couple of this show.

I’m honestly not sure where we go from here. What does this mean when Chris Messina comes back to the show? It seems odd that The Mindy Project would put this much effort into Jody and Mindy’s flirtation if it wasn’t going to lead to at least some kind of relationship. I guess only time (and future episodes) will tell.

Notes and Observations

  • Apparently the Shulman and Associates’ staff has been betting on the weights of newborn babies. Sometimes, I wonder how their practice stays open.
  • Honestly, aside from the bookstore, all of Marcus’ date ideas sound pretty interesting. Yes, I would go see a play of a Full House rerun with commercials, or Donald Glover reading his space opera in a granite mine.
  • Marcus’ thumbs up after mentioned the Buzzfeed personality article is both adorable and hilarious.
  • Marcus’ final compliment/insult “You may not be the best of anything in New York, but you’re pretty fun” and Mindy’s confused face was hilarious.
  • I didn’t really care much for Jeremy and the nurses’ subplot – we’ve seen Jeremy try way too hard to be liked before, and the story felt stale.

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