The Mindy Project showrunner appears to be fed up with notes from the Fox Decency Police, and has tweeted one such memo — presumably to embarrass the division. In its pre-shoot memo about one of the comedy’s episodes, The Fox Decency Police made these requests:
Page 13: Please substitute for Peter’s “balls” reference.
Page 28 Please substitute for Mindy’s “penis” reference.
Please substitute for Mindy’s “69″ reference.
Decency Police and their “We’ll trade you one penis for two vaginas” memos are always good for a laugh on a slow day, which may explain why today The Reporters Who Cover Television glommed on to showrunner Matt Warburton‘s tweet of several days ago (you know how it is: TV critic re-tweets it, Defamer posts it, more media pick it up). In the Twitter post, he took a photo of the memo and added, “The Mindy Project is a classy show for grown ups”, like he meant it to sting. And yet, ask someone attached to the show’s production or broadcast why it’s still on the air with the numbers it’s getting these days and you probably ARE going to get an earful of “Mindy is a very upscale show, with a 142 index in the demo in $100K+ homes, ranking No. 9 among major broadcast network shows in this category, and the highest indexing of any Fox entertainment series.”
Still, you can’t help but feel for Warburton. His series is getting clobbered by NBC’s The Voice in its time slot (last season NBC had little-watched comedies Go On and The New Normal in the second hour of primetime on the night). How’s a guy to compete with a hit singing competition that’s only going to get bigger now that one of its judges has been accused of providing ecstasy to a dinner date? A few more penis gags would go a long way to fix the 31% decline in the demo this season compared with last (down to a 1.8 rating, which puts it on par with CBS’ Blue Bloods) and 28% plunge in overall audience (down to 3.5 million viewers, which puts it below Saturday’s The Blacklist repeats and the cancelled Lucky 7). Heck, last night the series matched its all-time demo low, and got beat among 18-34 females by CBS’ NCIS, which we’re guessing further put Warburton over the edge. Look at CBS’ monster comedy hit The Big Bang Theory — it’s jammed with penis gags and is averaging nearly 21 million viewers and a 6.4 demo rating. Clearly Mindy suffers from Big Bang penis envy.
On the other hand, the comedy that’s got maybe the highest concentration of penis gags on broadcast TV, CBS’ 2 Broke Girls, took a nosedive in the ratings this season, plunging 25% in the demo (15% in viewers), until CBS parked it in a protected time slot. 2 Broke Girls is so penis-gag laden, it makes Big Bang Theory look like an After School Special.