Why Mindy Kaling Says She Could Never Write Euphoria

Mindy Kaling's Never Have I Ever is a very specific look at high school, one quite different from HBO's Euphoria. Find out why she appreciates the universe she's created.

By Daniel Trainor Aug 13, 2022 12:03 AMTags
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Everybody's high school experience is different—just ask Mindy Kaling.

The former star of The Office is a co-creator of Netflix's Never Have I Ever, which just dropped its third season Aug. 12. The show follows Devi (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) and her pack of eclectic friends as they attempt to navigate high school and adolescence in California's San Fernando Valley. 

While the show deals with some tough real world issues—death, cultural differences, broken hearts—it's undeniably more breezy and light-hearted than some of its contemporaries, namely HBO's Euphoria.

Mindy said that's absolutely by design.

"I love Euphoria and I think [creator] Sam [Levinson] is like a genius. I think he has a lot to say about things like sex and drug use and addiction and those are incredibly interesting, but we don't have a ton of experience in that," she told The Hollywood Reporter Aug. 11. "I watch that show on the edge of my seat, vicariously, but I feel like nerds lusting over guys is more what we feel comfortable writing about so that's why we do this. We write about strivers and dorks and people who are underestimated."

Mindy Kaling's Best Looks

Co-creator Lang Fisher agreed—and certainly didn't beat around the bush.

"Mindy and I are not cool enough to write Euphoria," she joked. "I can't imagine us ever like, ‘Alright now she goes and does heroin.' We operate pretty succinctly and safely in the TV-14 space, and also we weren't like Euphoria teens. Mindy and I were goody-goodies who were dorks and maybe each had like half a boyfriend."

Hey, half a boyfriend is better than no boyfriend at all?

Steve Granitz/WireImage

With all of this being said, season three of Never Have I Ever does see Devi come into her own more than ever before. 

"In the first couple seasons we definitely have seen Devi be a person who is like, ‘I need to check these boxes to be happy and have the life I want,'" Lang said. "She starts to realize ‘Maybe I'm not the dorky loser that I thought I was and I do have the life I always wanted, right now.'"

OK, she might not be Euphoria's Maddy or Cassie yet, but we like Devi just the way she is.

The third season of Never Have I Ever is available to stream on Netflix.

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