Tuesday, September 23, 2014

REVIEW: 'The Mindy Project' - Mindy Goes to Brunch with Danny and His Mother in 'Annette Castellano Is My Nemesis'

FOX's The Mindy Project - Episode 3.02 "Annette Castellano Is My Nemesis"

It's Mindy's time to shine when Danny's mom (Rhea Perlman) comes to the city and Mindy is determined to win her approval. Meanwhile, Morgan tries to stand up for himself in his relationship with Tamra.

When all the various pieces of The Mindy Project work together, it's a very strong comedy. And yet, when they don't, it's even more apparent than with some other comedies out there that it doesn't. For instance, "Annette Castellano Is My Nemesis" has a wonderful story between Mindy, Danny and Danny's mother - played by Emmy winner Rhea Perlman. And then, there is this really odd subplot about Morgan and Tamra's relationship and Peter trying to hijack it somewhat which was way too heightened and ridiculous for me to take seriously. That ultimately makes this episode feel underwhelming even though I continue to love what the series is doing with the Mindy and Danny relationship.

Perlman is really funny as Danny's mother, Annette. She's not just relegated to the supporting role in this story - like Perlman often is. She gets to be a focal point and her dynamic with Mindy is quite entertaining to watch go back-and-forth. These are two strong independent woman. Annette has always been tough on Danny because she knows he can handle it - unlike his younger brother Ritchie. Mindy is not the kind of personality that will sit back and agree with everything just so she gets in Annette's good graces. That is part of her four-part plan to win the approval of any mother. And yet, she earns even more respect for standing up for herself and dishing it out just as easily as she can take it. That's a quality Annette can respect. They both have Danny's best interests at heart - even though he fears what may happen when the two of them spend time together. It leads to a wonderful physical comedy bit where Mindy is trying to help Annette while she's not having any of it. That leads to a wonderful heart-to-heart. Now, I'm really looking forward to seeing how Perlman's continued presence on the show will help define the Mindy and Danny relationship this season.

And then, there is the subplot which I'm not quite sure how to react to other that to flail around just like Tamra did. That moment played so over-the-top. There was no nuisance to it. I honestly believed that Peter was in the right and Tamra was faking allergies just to get Morgan to give away his dogs. That, however, was not the case - which makes even less sense. The whole story is about Peter and how he's mopey after learning that Lauren and Jeremy kissed. And yet, he's suppose to be trying to win her back and prove that he's the guy she should be dating. Instead, he's in this really weird headspace that I don't quite understand.

Some more thoughts:
  • "Annette Castellano Is My Nemesis" was written by Tracey Wigfield and directed by Marco Fargnoli.
  • The only show Annette watches is Castle. How appropriate! And now, Mindy thinks it sounds smart too.
  • But Annette also has something against Michael Strahan. Largely because he's not Regis Philbin.
  • Annette and Dot's concerns with elder rape should be taken very seriously! To the point, that they feel comfortable yelling it out when they are unwillingly touched by anyone.
  • Isn't 1 PM a little odd to be going out for brunch?
  • Beverly is in charge of pencils! Not scheduling!
  • So far, I'm loving the musical choices that turn Danny on.
  • Ritchie has done a webseries about wine. I kinda wanna see that now.
  • However, I'm not pleased the show returned to its normal musical stylings for the title sequence. And it's as annoying as ever! With the addition of some new images too!