Chris Messina's Return To 'The Mindy Project' Doesn't Mean Mindy & Danny Should Be Endgame
If the entirety of The Mindy Project has been one big ode to the romantic comedy movie genre, then the final season could be the equivalent of Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks' meeting on top of the Empire State Building in Sleepless in Seattle. Mindy is heading toward her happily ever after, and according to Vulture, Chris Messina's Danny is returning to The Mindy Project to be a part of the grand finale. But that doesn't mean Mindy and Danny should be endgame, despite what the standard rom-com script says about the fate of one true loves.
Having Messina back is sure to be a gift. Mindy and Danny's relationship has been a core part of the series since the beginning. They share a child, a past, and even their very own Sleepless in Seattle moment. They're the couple the audience is supposed to root for, but creator Mindy Kaling has slyly subverted the most pervasive rom-com trope of them all — the idea that you only get one true love.
Both Mindy and Danny are married to other people now. They successfully lead separate lives and still manage to co-parent. And it works for them far better than their romantic relationship ever did. Over the course of the first five seasons, these two characters shared some of TV's sexiest and sweetest moments. When they were good, they were stolen-kisses on an airplane levels of relationship goals, but when they were bad, they were really, really bad.
From Danny trying to dictate what kind of birth plan Mindy should have to his attempts to get her pregnant without her knowledge, the reality of their relationship was often disturbing. Sure, they have chemistry, but they want different things out of a partnership. Worse than having fundamentally different views about coupledom, Danny's attempts to hold Mindy back from leading the life she wants will never be OK.
Mindy has grown so much as a mother, a doctor, a businesswoman, and a person. Season 6 should be about her celebrating her successes and adjusting to her new normal as a wife and stepmother. Who knows if Mindy and her new husband Ben will make it to the end of the series? They're certainly a good fit, but life has a way of throwing curve balls Mindy's way.
No matter what happens with Ben, Mindy and Danny should be over. At least romantically. That's not to say the show shouldn't indulge in a "what might have been" episode, or give these two one more big moment. But they absolutely shouldn't have Mindy compromise her amazing life to try to be something she's not for Danny again.
Mindy is not Meg Ryan. She's Mindy Lahiri, and her happy ending doesn't have to follow anyone's playbook but her own.