The Mindy Project opens on Mindy (Mindy Kaling) sadly changing her status to "single", and then she remembers that she's Mindy Lahiri and she doesn't give up that easily. She asks Danny (Chris Messina) to drive her to the airport, but he wants her to go with him to see his dad first so he tricks her into going with him. Mindy makes it easy by being the worst kind of passenger. Yep, she falls asleep.
When they finally get to his dad, Mindy is furious. And then Danny tells her that he wanted her along to set his hand, which he's going to break on his dad's face. Mindy's horrified. He knocks on the door and he's totally pumped. Then a little girl opens the door. She introduces herself as Danny Castellano (Madison Moellers).
Little Danny gets their dad (Dan Hedaya) and Alan grabs Danny in a hug which isn't returned. Danny wants so much to smash his face in, but how can he with Little Danny looking on all innocent and sweet and hopeful about meeting her big brother? Alan invites them in for potato chip pie. Danny tries to say no, but Mindy talks over him because she wants him to spend some time with his dad since they came all the way out there and because she really wants to try the potato chip pie.
At the table, Danny's stunned and a bit pissed to realize that Alan's kind of got the parenting thing down now. While he grew up eating fast food, Little Danny doesn't even know what it is. When she invites Danny to her soccer game, he tries to refuse, but Mindy forces the issue by telling him she'll drive herself to the airport. As she pulls away, Danny makes his way through a six pack and decides that now is a perfect time to take a walk in the desert. It's really not.
Meanwhile, Peter (Adam Pally) and Morgan (Ike Barinholtz) are back in New York, and Peter has had it with Morgan, which makes it particularly unfortunate when they accidentally get locked in the bathroom after everyone else leaves. Peter's ecstatic when they hear Cliff through the vent, that turns to horror when he realizes that Cliff (Glenn Howerton) is listening to and sobbing along to "You Were Meant for Me" on repeat. They realize they can't let him know they can hear him, and settle in. They're completely nonplussed that Mindy would dump him.
When they're finally released by the cleaning lady, they bolt for freedom. Only Cliff is finally done with his sobfest, so he's in the elevator with them. Cliff tells them he and Mindy are done, and Morgan convinces him to let Peter and him take him out for a guys' night. And then they realize that Mindy didn't dump him. He dumped her. They think he's insane and tell him so.
Back in California, Mindy has to turn back, missing yet another flight, when Danny calls to say he's lost in the desert. Mindy finally finds him and they have a terrible fight. Danny tells her she's wasting her time trying to get back with Cliff because guys don't dump girls they like. Mindy tells him she thought he was mean when she first met him, and yep. Still mean. She makes him walk 20' behind her with instructions to whistle like a mockingjay every once in a while so she'll know he isn't dead.
They get lost and wind up at the local army base where Alan has a barber shop. Alan comes to spring them. Mindy and Danny go to Little Danny's game, and Mindy bonds with the kid. Danny thaws a bit toward Alan.
They fly back to New York together, and Mindy takes Little Danny's advice and writes Cliff an email. She starts it by telling Cliff that she and Casey had crazy sexual chemistry. Danny tells her that's not a great idea, and dictates an apology. Mindy's thrilled with how great it sounds (and Cliff loves it and it makes him realize he really wants Mindy back) that she goes to get him a tonic (not seltzer) water. Danny stays in his seat. There's a bit of turbulence and he has a moment of clarity. He goes to find Mindy. She tells him she can't find any tonic water, and he grabs her and kisses her. After a stunned moment, she kisses him back.
The whole thing was weirdly unexpected considering it was so anticipated. At any rate, that's it for a while. The show's back in April.
Photo credit: The Mindy Project