How Hulu Will Save The Mindy Project
Welcome to the post-cable TV apocalypse, in which networks become savages and shows are executed harshly, cruelly, and without warning. If your favorites survived, you are fortunate. If not, we will respect your privacy at this devastating time.
Jokes aside, this year’s season of cancellations was easily a bloodbath, sparing little to no stragglers in ratings, Mindy Kaling’s indulgent, yet wildly witty cult comedy included. The Mindy Project was axed prematurely, sadly enough, and faithful viewers were shorted from seeing Mindy Lahiri’s happy ending, the one Kaling had traced in Lahiri’s stars from the pilot episode.
This is not to say that every series finale needs to be wrapped in a satisfying “the end” scrawled in dreamy calligraphy, but Mindy, with those When Harry Met Sally references and parallels to what’s likely Kaling’s actual picturesque fairytale, will feel incredibly unfinished without it. The Mindy Project is a rom-com, and what kind of rom-com ends without a grand finale airport chase scene set to The Cure’s “Pictures of You,” followed by end credits that montage snapshots from the happy couple’s milestones thereafter? The bad ones, that’s what.
It’s looking more likely, though, that Mindy will have the opportunity for some closure. Reports are saying that Hulu, which already owns the streaming rights to the show’s episodes, is looking to pick up the show for two more seasons. Though TV-anxiety is induced from a network abandoning a series, Mindy can only benefit from the move.
For one, The Mindy Project is a comedy known for pushing the boundaries on cable. It’s had its raunchy moments, and at Hulu, Kaling can write without sticking to PG practices. It’s not HBO, but that bit of creative freedom will be welcoming to its main demographic.
Which brings us to…the show’s demographic. The A.V. Club’s Marah Eakin writes, “the show draws big after the fact with women ages 18 to 34, who have collectively DVRed the show hard enough to make it one of their top five live-action comedies.” That’s another reason why a move to Hulu makes sense: much of Mindy‘s audience are the devoted binge-watchers, and if not Netflix, Hulu is the place where episodes can thrive amongst those who depend on their queue.
Ultimately, if any show on TV at the moment can survive and blossom at this degree of change, it’s The Mindy Project. As EW points out, since its first season three years ago, Mindy wrote off several main characters, changed direction from being an office sitcom to its own version of a romantic/grown-up schtick, and dropped so many storylines that were worth abandoning. The show doesn’t have a formula, and a new platform can only encourage the fact that it doesn’t need one to be good.
So please, any and all holy higher beings of TV, don’t let this be it for Mindy. Doesn’t Dr. Lahiri deserve the full-circle moment in which someone else from her romantic past makes an inappropriate toast at her own wedding? Yes, she does. Let’s make it happen.