One of the most improved comedies of last season, Fox’s “The Mindy Project,” returns on Sept. 17 at 9:30/8:30c for its second-season premiere. Everyone’s favorite OB-GYN, Mindy Lahiri (Mindy Kaling), has embarked on a trip of self-discovery doing good in Haiti with her boyfriend, Casey (Anders Holm), but the practice she left behind is thriving in New York City thanks to Dr. Paul Leotard (James Franco), the miracle-worker doctor with model-good looks — seriously, he was actually a model. When Mindy returns, she’s not too happy about being replaced with the practice’s new Dr. L, regardless of the fact that he’s pretty much the best at everything (would we expect anything less from Franco?).
Here’s what else we can expect from Season 2 of “The Mindy Project”:
1. Guest stars galore. Not only is Anders Holm back as Mindy’s pastor boyfriend, but Chloe Sevigny returns as Danny’s ex-wife and Bill Hader returns as Mindy’s now-divorced ex-boyfriend. Then there’s James Franco in the first two episodes as a new doctor in the practice, and NBA star Kris Humphries (you might recognize him from his marriage of 72 days) as himself, just ’cause. He’s a good sport about it, too. The early episodes of Season 2 will also feature the likes of “Happy Endings” star Adam Pally and “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” ne’er-do-well Glenn Howerton.
2. Haiti. Mindy actually goes! And she likes it, too. The first episode gives us a glimpse at her new life abroad being selfless and doing good, although a medical emergency will bring her back to the Big Apple pretty quickly. That means some hilarious video chat hijinks with her man back in the Caribbean.
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3. Short hair. A few months have passed since the Season 1 finale, in which Mindy chopped off all her hair, but not enough for her pixie cut to grow out. We’re going to have to deal with that wig for at least the first few episodes — but fingers crossed a time jump will solve that problem as quickly as possible.
4. The gang’s all there. Mindy and Danny (Chris Messina) may be dating other people, but you’ll be happy to know the inexplicable spark between them hasn’t dimmed over the summer. Their chemistry is just as palpable as ever. Since the first few episodes are Mindy-centric, we don’t see as much of the supporting cast as we would like, but rest assured — everyone’s still as weird and hilarious as ever. Except Jeremy (Ed Weeks), who has taken on a leadership role at the practice. Authority actually suits him quite well. Who knew he could be such a competent boss?
5. These things. In no particular order, here is a list of hilarious sights you will definitely see in the first few episodes: James Franco’s sperm, Morgan’s Bane impression, a whipped cream bikini, James Franco doing magic, the most pathetic basketball team ever, and a “shots off.”
“The Mindy Project” premieres Tuesday, Sept. 17 at 9:30/8:30c on FOX.