Some shows keep all details under wraps to avoid spoilers, but The Mindy Project is laying some elements of the final season out on the table for all to see. It's not Lost, after all. While they're married in the Season 6 premiere, Ben and Mindy are getting divorced on The Mindy Project. For the newlyweds, it's just a matter of time.
While nothing will ever beat the fictional relationship whiplash that was Barney and Robin's divorce in the final half of the final episode of How I Met Your Mother, the final season on The Mindy Project isn't wasting much time at all. As Mindy Kaling's Instagram revealed earlier in the year, Episode 2 is titled "A Romantical Decouplement," and Episode 3 is titled "May Divorce Be With You," so that should be a decent clue as to the timeline. It's not a sudden development, and fans who caught on to the homage to The Graduate at the end of last season probably saw this coming, but they're getting right to it.
As of Tuesday's new episode, Ben and Mindy's relationship is already off to somewhat of a slow start. Mindy didn't notice that Ben wasn't home for several days, and at the end of the episode chose to sleep at work rather than follow through on her word and head home to her husband. Ben seems upset, and Mindy has also started to notice that married life isn't exactly what she always dreamed. They aren't fighting, but they aren't together either. Depending on the situation and the people, that's sometimes worse. If those episode titles are any indication, they'll be broken up in two weeks or less.
While fast-burning relationships happen a lot of television, either because guest stars are moving on or the story needs more twists and turns, the way Ben and Mindy's relationship is fizzling out feels relatable. As much as Mindy loves having men in her life, she's an independent person who isn't used to sharing her time with others and opening up to a partner. It's something that a lot of us go through in new relationships — or new marriages, in Mindy's case. When you're used to filling your time by yourself and making plans without considering anyone else, how does that change? How much should it have to change?
This storyline is also a realistic and refreshing change from the type of conflict that typically exists in romantic comedies, which is ironically Mindy Lahiri's genre of choice and a theme in both the show and the Season 6 premiere. Heroines in those stories often struggle with a work/life balance and the desire to "have it all," which is both tiring and often problematic. Mindy's relationship problem has nothing to do with her job. Her career is great, and that's awesome to see in a female character. The balance that Mindy is struggling with is more general than that. It's a life/life thing.
Mindy's relationship isn't the only one going through some major changes. Anna and Jeremy, who Season 6 reveals have been dating for eight months, broke up. Collette and Karen are friends again, after calling off their wedding in the Season 5 finale. Tamra wants to be a single mother, and if the Season 6 teaser is any indication, may end up back together with Morgan.
At the end of the day, Ben is a pretty boring character. Wasn't that the point? He was Mindy's safe choice. Why waste any time breaking them up in the final season? The Mindy Project is a comedy, and deserves to go out with a bang instead of a whimper — so the show is moving on from this plot point fast.