Mindy Kaling and the "Never Have I Ever" Cast Declare Whether They're Team Paxton or Team Ben
We've watched Devi go back and forth between Paxton (Darren Barnet) and Ben (Jaren Lewison) in the first two seasons of the teen series as she's tried to balance her love life to no avail. However, season three introduces a new face to her rotation: Des (played by Anirudh Pisharody) — a "really hot Indian guy," creator Mindy Kaling previously teased, who briefly dates our leading lady. Though their short-lived relationship puts Devi back at square one, the end of season three teases hopes for rekindled feelings between either her and Paxton or frenemy Ben.
The debate about who's more deserving of Devi's heart has split "Never Have I Ever" fans into a full-on ship war comprised of Team Paxton and Team Ben. Though the divide may be clear among some, Kaling, Barnet, and Lewison reveal a worthy third option to POPSUGAR: Team Devi.
"I think you can make a case for either guy because they both offer some really great qualities and characteristics."
"You know what's so funny . . . I always feel like young people now are like, 'She should feel good in her own skin, and she doesn't need a guy.' [But] I'm from the '90s where I'm like, 'Oh, she's got to have a guy,'" Kaling says. "I think the answer that I've learned from Maitreyi and the other cast [members] is [Devi] should feel comfortable in her own skin and that's a win."
Barnet and Lewison echo Kaling's sentiments as the latter says both Paxton and Ben have a shot at making Devi happy. "I think you can make a case for either guy because they both offer some really great qualities and characteristics," says Lewison. Barnet adds: "Whoever makes her happiest. That's why I think both of us can [say] Team Devi is a thing."
Kaling remains optimistic about Devi's promising choices, though she can't help but admit she's "a little bit Team Paxton" now. "I got to say he's a babe," she adds. But we'll have to wait until the fourth and final season to find out if he and Devi will ever get back together, or if Devi and Ben will take their friendship to the next level. ". . . nobody wants to see people just in happy relationships on TV," Kaling remarks of Devi's romantic drama. "So we want to put her through the wringer, [have her] make mistakes, pay for her mistakes, and finally get little wins at the end because life is hard."
"Never Have I Ever" season three is now streaming on Netflix.