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Did Mindy Kaling Slip an ‘Office’ Reference into ‘Never Have I Ever’ Season 3?


Bears. Beets. Bobblehead of Mohan.

That’s how the famous saying from The Office goes today, because we just watched the third episode Never Have I Ever Season 3 and noticed a precious Easter egg that every fan of the NBC comedy will appreciate.

In the Season 3 episode “Never Have I Ever…had a Valentine,” Nalini (Poorna Jagannathan) spends her Valentine’s Day reminiscing about a holiday spent with her late husband Mohan (Sendhil Ramamurthy). She flashes back to one Valentine’s Day in particular, when he gave her a gift even though they’d agreed not to exchange that year. Classic Mohan.

“This is different, you’ll like it,” Mohan says smoothly. “I spent hardly any money.” He hands her a small bag and she pulls out a bobblehead doll that bears a remarkable likeness to her handsome hubby.

Poorna Jagannathan as Nalini in 'Never Have I Ever'
Photo: Netflix

“You got me a bobblehead of you?” she asks. “Yeah. Now you can knock me around when I’m being hard headed,” he replies. Awwwww.

After remembering the sweet gesture, Nalini decides to eat her Valentine’s Day dinner beside bobblehead Mohan. “Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart,” she says to the figurine, before drinking some wine and attempting to give the bobblehead a sip.

Poorna Jagannathan as Nalini in 'Never Have I Ever'
Photo: Netflix

Even though Mohan gave the bobblehead version of himself a stronger jawline, it was still an adorable, thoughtful gift. And what made the present even more special is the fact that it was almost certainly inspired by The Office. Yeah. We see you, Mindy.

As a reminder, Never Have I Ever creator Mindy Kaling played customer service rep/Business Bitch/go-to gossip Kelly Kapoor in The Office and was also a writer for the workplace comedy, which ran nine seasons.

One of The Office’s main characters, Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson), is a huge bobblehead fan, and in Season 2, Episode 16, his girlfriend Angela (Angela Kinsey, who plays Ben’s mom in Never Have I Ever) gifts him one for — wait for it — VALENTINE’S DAY!

Rainn Wilson holding a bobblehead doll in 'The Office'
Photo: Peacock

In the episode named after the romantic holiday, Dwight finds a box on his desk that contains a bobblehead of himself. “It’s me. I’m the bobblehead,” a delighted Dwight says. He exclaims “Yes!” and laughs with glee. The Dwight bobblehead becomes one of his most prized possessions — not to mention a huge memento of the show.

Though it’s a bit odd to gift people bobbleheads modeled after themselves, in The Office it made sense. Dwight is vain as hell and it was also a secret workplace Valentine’s Day gift, so it’s not like Angela could have given him a bobblehead of her. The Dwight bobblehead was perfect, as were the tweaks made to the storyline in Never Have I Ever. The Mohan bobblehead highlighted his sparkling personality, served as a cute outlet for Nalini’s frustration with him, and helped keep his memory alive after death. Kaling may not be the credited writer for Never Have I Ever‘s Season 3 Valentine’s Day episode, but we bet she and her former show played some role in the idea.

We don’t know what we did to deserve two perfect Valentine’s Day bobblehead storylines on TV, both connected to Kaling, but we’re thankful as hell.





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