Just Call Her MILF In This Week’s The Mindy Project

Welcome back, Mindy Project fans! You still with me? After my lukewarm reception to last week’s episode, Tuesday’s newest episode, “Stay at Home MILF,” seemed more like the show we have all grown to love.

The episode highlights Mindy’s life as a new mother. Like any woman (or man) who trades in a career outside the home for diaper duty, Mindy struggles with her decision. For a while, Mindy believes she has it made being a stay-at-home mom. She can eat whatever she wants, wear whatever she wants, and gets to hang with Leo all day.

Danny, however, has other plans. He gives Mindy quite the list of daily chores and tasks. Of the listed tasks, he expects Mindy to cook, clean, bake, and tune the piano. Oh, and he fired the housekeeper. If Ma did it, Mindy can too, right?

The next day, Mindy is determined to take her new role as stay-at-home MILF to the next level. She researches how to live a glamorous, stay at home life on only the best mommy blogs out there. Rules include: dress nicely, hand clean the floors with only organic products, run five miles, and cook a gourmet dinner with dessert. I don’t have children, but everyone can do that while tending to a newborn, I’m sure.

Credit: Hulu
Credit: Hulu

Across town at the office, Jeremy (or Jeremerie, to Mindy) installs an intercom, thinking it will help cut down on meetings at the office. As usual, the staff and other doctors ignore Jeremy and his many attempts to improve office morale. Bringing down the mood just a little bit, Jody sets out to find Colette (a closeted lesbian) a husband. She enlists Morgan’s help by asking him to act as her boyfriend for a family wedding. Then we see a delightful montage of bizarre, yet hilarious, scenes of the couple at the office.

Back to our domestic goddess, the straw finally breaks the camel’s back is when Danny refuses to eat grilled cheese and tomato soup after several nights in a row. Being as ‘traditional’ as he is, Danny confronts Mindy and suggests she learn to cook more than one meal (again, I’m sure, like his mother did). Mindy releases her frustrations, and explains that being home with the baby all day is not only difficult work, but it takes its toll.

In response, Danny defends that hanging with the baby and staying home is fun, leading to my favorite line from the episode. Outraged, Mindy asks, “Fun? You think I’m laying on the beach, tits deep in a margarita?” To shut him up, and earn herself a trip out of the house, Mindy challenges Danny to be a stay-at-home dad for a day. She goes to work and he stays home, so he can see that full time dad duty is no walk in the park.

Mindy’s day is great, and she could not be happier to be back in the office. She has a successful surgery, catches up with the gang, and realizes she really does miss work and surgery. Also, she gives Colette a killer pep talk on using Morgan as her beard: “If you are not living your authentic self, then what even was the point of Glee!”

Colette confides in Mindy that, more than anything, she is afraid of her brother’s reaction. She wants to make him proud and to be everything he ever imagined she could be. Colette’s thinking out loud helps Mindy realize she is also in the closet (by hiding her feelings from Danny). For her part, Colette comes out to her brother via the office intercom, and it really doesn’t turn out badly at all!

Mindy returns homes to a spotless apartment and homemade dinner. Somehow Danny made it though the day on his own, and he far surpassed Mindy’s efforts. She takes Leo into the bedroom for a heart to heart, telling him that as much as she loves spending every waking moment with him, it’s not the place for her all the time. She says, “I just want you to be proud of me, baby. Which is why I have to go back to work.”

The moment was actually very sweet, and (I imagine) a conversation that many men and women have had with their children. As children and even adults, we want to please our parents and to make them proud, but the desire goes the other way around, too.

Credit: Hulu
Credit: Hulu

It’s then that she notices the signs that Danny’s mother has been in the apartment. After some pretty funny interrogation, Danny finally admits he couldn’t handle the job, either. If these two couldn’t handle it for a day, they never would have lasted in our house growing up; my mom raised four kids and stayed at home for nearly 20 years!

For Mindy, Danny, and Leo, it seems that maybe a compromise needs to be made. Either way, Mindy has to find a way to tell Danny she wants to work. A tragedy and a blessing fall into their laps when Danny receives word that his father has suffered a heart attack. Jumping at the opportunity, Mindy offers to cover for him at work, and sends him off to the west coast to be with his sister and father. Somehow, Mindy finds the balance between optimism and empathy for Danny.

Overall, I liked this episode much better than last week’s, and I’ll sum it up to three main points. First, it was great to see Mindy out of the house and in doctor beast mode. Second, I had a lot of LOL moments during this episode. I mentioned my favorite line above (re: beaches and margaritas), but I have to give an honorable mention to this gem: “I’ve never gotten on my knees and not gotten jewelry out of it.” Third, I felt the characters were more themselves this week, and I look forward to next week.

Do you think Mindy will tell Danny about her desire to return to work? Or will she put it off until it blows up in her face, like normal?

Abby Bertrand
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