The Mindy Project: “Wiener Night” Season 2 Episode 5 Review

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The gang visits an art gallery–much to Danny’s dismay–in an episode that puts The Mindy Project back on its feet.

It appears that this week’s episode takes place a little while after last week, because Mindy seems to have moved on from her breakup with Pastor Casey.  This is welcome news, because happy Mindy is a lot more fun.  Thanks to a new hair product called “television magic,” Mindy has her original tresses back and is looking like her old self again.

The cold open this week wasn’t gut-bustingly funny per se, but it did feature a lot of nice touches. Mindy is on a plane back from a wedding, and hopes that the man of her dreams will sit next to her.  Instead, Kevin Smith, gamely playing himself, plops into the adjacent seat and remarks how great it is that Mindy isn’t a judgmental skinny girl.  It looks as though it’s going to be quite a long flight, until we learn that he’s sitting in the incorrect seat.  Her actual seatmate is Jason (Ben Feldman, aka Ginsberg from Mad Men), an Arts and Culture reporter for an esoteric newspaper.

Mindy is initially attracted him, and the two have great chemistry together, until it’s revealed how much of a cultural snob he really is.  I found this to be incredibly relatable. Everyone knows someone who thinks they’re better because their tastes are more refined.  A great point the episode makes is that you’re not any less of a good person if you like watching Real Housewives, or you’re favorite singer is Katy Perry.  In fact, Katy Perry is pretty awesome and you shouldn’t have to apologize for liking her.  Mindy takes Jason to an art gallery to prove just how cultured she is, only to realize that she doesn’t need prove anything to anyone.  Her speech at the end was very funny, but also very validating for her rom-com obsessed character.

The art opening in question, that Mindy attends along with all her officemates, is no ordinary art opening.  You see, as a last act of revenge, Christina decides to display private nude photos of Danny in a gallery exhibit. She doesn’t actually attend the opening herself, but a truly hilarious video that plays toward the end of the night definitely marks her presence.  Everyone’s reaction to the photos are excellent, from Danny’s obvious discomfort, to Peter and Morgan’s immature mocking, to Betsy’s sudden physical urges.  Tamara, however, wins the award for best supporting character this week, if only for her line about wanting to marry a fat, rich man.  “You know, like those cartoon cats with the cigars?”

The other thing that really stood out in this episode, was the return of Mindy having multiple possibilities for romance.  Though her and Danny seem to be comfortable in the friend zone for the moment, Mindy still has her options when it comes to potential suitors.  Jason eventually apologizes for his smug attitude, and even plays her a version of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” on a ukulele.  It’s a pretty suave move, I must say.  Meanwhile, lawyer Cliff comes to the gallery to see if there’s any way he can get the photos removed for Danny.  He admits to Mindy that he has a girlfriend, but there’s no denying the chemistry that the two share.  Leaving viewers to wonder what’s in store for Mindy’s romantic future felt like a very season 1 thing to do, and I mean that in a good way.

Overall, this was another stellar episode for The Mindy Project‘s second season.  For the most part, the cast seems to be settling into their ensemble roles quite nicely.  I’m not yet sure about Peter, but I have high hopes for him.  He has the potential to be uniquely funny, or to just become another Morgan, and I certainly hope it’s the former.  Still, as long as Mindy Kaling is in the spotlight, there’s not much that can go wrong.  Grade: B+


By Mike Papirmeister

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