Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Mindy Project 2.12: "Danny Castellano is My Personal Trainer"

“Guys, over the holiday, I had five hams and a goose. Like I am a wolf in a children’s story.”

This particular episode of “The Mindy Project” advanced the potential of a future Mindy/Danny relationship in an interesting way. Granted, that advancement came with a heaping helping of juvenile humor, but I’m kind of thirty-going-on-twelve myself, so I’ll admit I laughed. A lot. Mindy needs to get in shape fast, and when she realizes how much of a gym rat Danny is, she asks for his help. The result shows just how good Danny could be for Mindy and how well he knows her, even if she’s not quite willing to see it herself just yet. Meanwhile, Jeremy takes some time off, and Peter realizes that supervision isn’t all fun and games. To do the job right, you can’t be the nice guy all the time. Quite an important lesson for anybody interested in management to learn, really, and I think Peter found a bit of a spine during his brief stint as acting managing partner.

The episode opens with Mindy voice-overing about how much she likes all the “firsts” of a new relationship. This corresponds with scenes of Mindy and Cliff trying and hilariously failing at these firsts, mostly due to Cliff thinking it might be a good idea to buy some satin sheets. Then there’s the kicker. Cliff asks Mindy to go with him on a weekend ski trip. Mindy thinks this sounds great until Cliff mentions spending time in the hot tub. She’s not comfortable with Cliff seeing her somewhat naked just yet. In fact, as she later tells her coworkers (holy TMI, Batman!), she has a whole set of elaborate moves she puts in play so that her boyfriends actually never see her naked.

At first, Morgan coaches Mindy, but it doesn’t really go well. Mindy thinks it’s too easy to manipulate Morgan into going too easy on her. She needs a personal trainer who is really going to push her and make her get in shape. When Danny comes back to the office from some time at the gym, boasting about how it was his best workout ever, Mindy thinks she has the solution to her problem. She asks Danny to train her. Danny is hesitant at first, but he agrees to it if Mindy agrees to do exactly what he says. Danny starts to regret his decision a bit at their first training session. And so does Mindy, really. Danny’s gym is barebones, and Mindy is disappointed that she won’t be able to watch trash TV while working out. I’m with Mindy on that one. Danny is disappointed that Mindy is wearing a workout outfit that includes rhinestones.

Meanwhile, Jeremy seems to be very ill, and he says he’s going to take a couple sick days. Nobody but Peter shows any interest in taking over Managing Partner duties, so Peter gets the nod. Peter thinks he’s a great choice. He was very popular as president of his college fraternity, after all. At first, Peter tries to take a “coolest boss ever” and “make everybody like me” approach to the job. Both Morgan and Tamra want a particular desk over in phlebotomy, and Peter tells them both that they can have it. He frames it as trusting them to hash it out among themselves. Peter not taking a side just makes it worse, though. Then he tells the staff that if they’re too warm, they should open a window. When he opens the window in the break room, though, an owl promptly flies. In. Apparently the owl is why the office had a “no opening the break room window” policy.

Out of the office, Danny and Mindy’s training sessions are going surprisingly well. Danny knows Mindy so well that he knows exactly how to motivate her. He uses her love of all things celebrity and entertainment to get her to do more pushups and other exercises. It’s kind of nice to see. We’re told often that Mindy and Danny are meant for each other, but this was a good example of showing it. They’re very comfortable together. Things go downhill, though, when Mindy decides it would be a good idea to take a sauna break. She thinks she’s entering an all-female sauna, so she goes in completely naked. Unfortunately for her, it’s a co-ed sauna, and Danny is already in it. Danny’s first instinct is to give Mindy his towel, Mindy is so horrified she drops the towel, and hilarity ensues.

Peter is getting extremely frustrated with how difficult he’s finding it to manage the office (the non-physician staff is seriously helpless), so he decides to pay Jeremy a visit to get some advice. Instead of being home in his sickbed, Jeremy is romancing some ladies when Peter shows up at his door. At first, Peter is upset that Jeremy lied, but Jeremy explains that he was a lothario before becoming managing partner, and he needed a little break to get back to being himself again. He tells Peter that he’s not going to be able to control the office if he continues to try and be everyone’s friend. Peter goes back to the office and takes Jeremy’s advice to heart. He lays down the law, and when Tamra tries to leave the office in protest, Peter drags her right back. By the time Jeremy returns to the office, Peter is most definitely in control, maybe even more so than Jeremy has ever been. That kid is going to go places.

As you might expect, things are pretty awkward between Danny and Mindy following Saunagate. Then Danny makes the mistake of starting to tell Mindy that since he’s seen her body, he can give her some suggestions of things to work on. Mindy doesn’t take too kindly to this at all. She goes into her office and starts looking at herself naked, to see if she can figure out what to work on. Danny barges in to ask Mindy a question and gets even more of a show than he got in the sauna. He goes with the “I can give you a few suggestions” line again, and Mindy kicks him out. Later, Mindy confronts Danny, telling him that he can’t tell her anything about her body that she hasn’t already heard many times before. He tells her that all he was going to suggest was that she not suck in her stomach. He likes that she looks like a woman. While Mindy and Danny aren’t going to be getting together any time soon, Mindy seems happy about this response.

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