This week on Fox’s “The Mindy Project,” Mindy (Mindy Kaling) realized that she was the only person in the office who was not making the most of her weekends and she wanted to change that. When she learned that Shauna (Amanda Setton) had an in at a nightclub, Mindy begged her receptionist to take her there. Shauna reluctantly agreed and it soon become an office outing.
“In the Club” was probably the weakest episode of the series so far. Mindy seemed a little too desperate for acceptance to the VIP area and the plot was stretched thin with each character having his or her own subplot. Betsy (Zoe Jarman) ordered expensive bottle service and then got embarrassingly drunk very quickly. Jeremy (Ed Weeks) was flirting with a bride-to-be who was having a bachelorette party, Morgan (Ike Barinholtz) was passing himself off as a bathroom attendant to make extra money and Shauna was upset that Danny (Chris Messina) was such a hit with all the women at the club.
Mindy made it to the VIP lounge, but it wasn’t the basketball players that invited her, it was their lawyer. Even as he flirted with her, Mindy was more interested in what the athletes were doing and she wasn’t doing her character any favors with her behavior. The show can’t seem to decide if it wants Mindy to be the starry-eyed girl who wants the love she grew up watching in romantic comedies or the bad girl who just wants to hook up with hot guys on the weekend and then move on with her life.
Anna Camp’s talents continue to be wasted as Mindy’s best friend, Gwen. She usually gets a one minute scene in each episode. Tonight, she turned down Mindy’s invitation to go clubbing, more or less saying that she was too old for the club scene because it made her feel like everyone was judging her and she preferred to be the one judging others. It was one of the best (and most realistic) moments of the episode.
Shauna having a crush on Danny seemed to come out of left field, even if it did lead to the best line of the episode when Mindy quipped, “It’s like Hermione liking Voldemort.” But Mindy herself was clearly impressed with Danny’s dance skills and the two shared their customary moment when he offered to get a drink with her, but she turned him down in favor of heading to the VIP lounge. Then, there was another moment when the gang was leaving for the night and the sports lawyer had sent a limo for them to use. Mindy was the last one to get in and she had a strange look on her face as she watched Danny get into a cab with the woman he’d been flirting with all night.
Again, the show needs to make up its mind. If the audience is supposed to root for Mindy and Danny as an eventual couple, which it feels like we’re supposed to, than what’s the point of Shauna having a crush on Danny too? That plotline feels like overkill. It’s fine if they want to keep up the push and pull with Mindy and Danny, but don’t make it a triangle with Shauna too. Hopefully when “The Mindy Project” comes back from its baseball-mandated break, it will stop trying to do so many things at once and just focus on being a comedy.
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