The trailer for Mindy Kaling‘s much anticipated new show The Mindy Project came out yesterday, and I’m tentatively willing to say it looks promising. And I don’t even like romantic comedies that much!
According to what I’ve read and seen thus far, The Mindy Project focuses on the life of one person (Mindy) as she navigates being a single, successful woman in her thirties living in (guess where?) New York City. This is hardly virgin territory, but if there’s anyone who can make this genre feel fresh again, it’s Mindy Kaling, whose work on The Office has produced some of the funniest, weirdest characters in recent memory. As a character, Mindy seems like she’s going to be a combo of rom-com clichés (or shall we say, commonly held experiences?) and more unique qualities. Race will hopefully be dealt with as deftly as it is on The Office–as an element of her character’s life and a possible site for comedy, but never a blunt, reductive tool. Kelly Kapoor is one of maybe three Southeast Asian characters currently on TV who are not total stereotypes, and I’m assuming Mindy will be another.
The fact that Mindy is a gyno adds an additional element of fun–anyone who’s seen Scrubs knows the potential for amusement in a hospital setting where everybody is working long hours on little sleep. There also seems to be a meta-awareness of rom-com tropes imbued in the characters (how could there not be?) which I hope Mindy will play around with freely. All this, plus the cameos from such funny people as Ed Helms and Bill Hader make me think it’s going to be a great, hilarious show.