After a surprising and bittersweet season finale, Hulu has renewed THE MINDY PROJECT for a sixth and final season. The series, which originally began on Fox before being canceled and saved by the streaming site, has had its shares of ups and downs, but a final season is a perfect opportunity for the show to have the ending it deserves.
Yesterday, the show had its Season 5 finale, in which Doctor Mindy Lahiri (Mindy Kaling) spontaneously married boyfriend Ben (Bryan Greenberg) with their two kids from previous relationships in tow. However, the final shot of the episode was Mindy looking dourly and unsurely out the subway window after the decision, which is not exactly how fans want things to end for the series’ heroine.
Created in 2013 by Kaling, the series has gone through numerous plots and characters changes, both good and bad, the most glaring being Mindy’s primary love interest, Danny (Chris Messina), being reduced to recurring midway through Season 4 and hardly appearing at all in Season 5. While many fans still pinned the couple as endgame, it seems highly unlikely now — although who knows what could happen with the final season?
This move isn’t surprising — not with Kaling’s busy schedule, including A Wrinkle in Time, Ocean’s 8, her movie about a late-night talk show host starring Emma Thompson, and a comedy pilot for NBC she’s executive producing and will recur in if it gets picked up to series — but there’s now a lot riding on this final season.
As Jennifer Trofa wrote in the review for yesterday’s finale, “At its core, this show is a romantic comedy and people expect their romantic comedy heroines to have a happy ending. Hopefully, the show will return to give Mindy one.”
That is ultimately what the final season should be about. The series is at its best when it’s about Mindy Lahiri the individual. Her romantic adventures are fun, but more than anything else, this show has always been good about supporting its lead female, a woman of color, and depicting her as a wholly human character — flaws and all — and loving her. Whatever the final season brings to her love life, what fans deserve is a satisfying final arc for a memorable and wonderful female character on TV.
The final season will stream on Hulu this fall.
Anya Crittenton | Associate Editor