Hulu’s 12-part miniseries Four Weddings and a Funeral, Mindy Kaling’s reimagining of the 1994 movie by the same name, is a rom-com fan’s catnip. Not because it’s a perfect show–as critics are only too happy to warn us, it’s not–but because it’s unapologetically dedicated to love and romance. Set in modern-day London, the series revolves around a group of 30-something American expats who’ve been friends since studying abroad together in college.
Spoiler warning: This article contains spoilers for all released episodes of Four Weddings and a Funeral on Hulu. If you’re not caught up, turn back now or forever hold your peace.
Maya, Craig, Ainsley, and Duffy have made royal messes of their love lives, making them relatable AF. (Okay, maybe we haven’t ditched our fiancée at the altar or kept a newly discovered child a secret from our girlfriend, but this is TV, it’s aspirational.) They’ve got all the puzzle pieces for a picture-perfect future where they’re happily paired off, but they’ve mismatched and jammed them together all wrong. The only way to salvage things is to break it all down and begin again.
Sorting out which characters belong together and which dont is half the fun of this show. The thing is, you can’t help but make judgments along the way. Some pairings are clearly superior to others, destined to end up together or not. Thus, I present to you my own completely biased and subjective analysis of the Four Weddings and a Funeral couples, ranked from worst to best:
Ugh, no. Just no. Maya has clearly never been interested in Duffy as anything more than a friend, so that should have been the beginning and end of that. Alas, Duffy is an entitled manbaby who honestly seems to believe his longtime crush has earned him a chance with Maya. Like it’s some sort of contest. Gross. What he doesn’t understand is that if he were actually a nice guy, he wouldn’t ever try to guilt her into a relationship she wasn’t truly into. He wouldn’t pull that stupid Love, Actually (or is it Say Anything?) bit with the declaration of love at her door. At least Duffy finally takes the hint that Maya is only going through the motions with him, and offers her an easy out. Here’s hoping his discovery of her letter to Kash puts his unrequited love of her to bed. For good, this time.
By all rights, they should be dead last in this list because I abhor cheaters and the married Senator Ted is an unrepentant philanderer. He also happens to be Maya’s boss, so there’s a power imbalance too. Yuck. Two factors save them from the very bottom spot, however. One: Maya learns a lot from this relationship about what she doesn’t want out of her future, so it’s useful, as plot devices go. And two: We are quite obviously never supposed to root for or care about this pairing, lowering the stakes. Makes it hard to work up as much annoyance as I have over Maya/Duffy, which was A Lot. Ergo, Maya/Ted have landed here. At second-to-last. Congrats to them?
Poor Tabby. Watching her pine for an oblivious, self-absorbed Duffy is bad enough, but the way he treats her when they’re together is worse. Rather than ask her out because he’s genuinely interested in getting to know her better, Duffy latches onto her because she flatters his ego. Case in point, he nearly dumps her when she gives him constructive criticism on his novel. Honestly, he should have left her alone then, rather than recruit her as his editor. What a dick move. At least she eventually sees the light and trades him in for a more successful writer. (Let’s just forget which one because…ew).
They’re a great match in theory and have their share of cute moments. Unfortunately, Kash’s repressed feelings for someone else keep them from connecting on a deeper level. Fatima would be Kash’s second choice, and she deserves to be #1 in her husband’s heart. They would’ve made each other miserable in the long run.
A picture-perfect couple, to be sure, but not much more. They clearly liked the idea of each other more than the reality of a life together. Ainsley can’t quite admit that to herself yet, but she’ll get there. They’re better off as friends…someday. You know, when the dust has settled and everyone’s happy with how things have turned out.
Look, Duffy is a douchebag, but he’s ever so much less of one when he’s with Gemma and it’s fascinating. I’m intrigued by the way she calls him out on his bullshit constantly, but pays attention to him in a way that his other friends don’t seem to realize he needs. She sees him, really sees him, and–best of all–she tells him the truth. Exhibit A: The day she marches into her son’s school to tell Duffy off for coloring his students’ opinion of women just because he was moping over a breakup. Exhibit B: That moment in Zara’s “Nose Crets” (No Secrets!) game when Gemma correctly guessed Duffy’s favorite book and refused to back down when he tried to deny it. I’m honestly not sure what Gemma gets out of her time with Duffy, but I’m prepared to wait and see. He’s got to get with the program and prove he can be worthy of her sometime…right? Let’s hope.
Disappointed the show’s main couple is not my number 1? Get in line. It’s not that I don’t like them. I sympathize with Maya and Kash’s plight–crazy about each other since the day they met yet reluctant to act on those feelings for fear of hurting Ainsley, their best friend and ex-fiance, respectively. They’re good people, with good hearts, the epitome of star-crossed lovers kept apart by circumstances and bad timing. Plus, they bring out a happier, dreamier side of each other. Kash may not have pursued acting if he hadn’t met Maya when he did, and she may have settled for Duffy. Actually, my biggest beef with them is just that they’re kind of…predictable? Okay, and also that they interrupted Bash’s proposal to Fatima, because wtf, who continues strolling into a friend’s apartment while it’s strewn with rose petals that are clearly not for you??? I guess what it really comes down to is that I’m not exactly waiting with bated breath to see Maya and Kash get their HEA. (Though I am pleased we’re finally getting to see them date, albeit secretly. They were a gorgeous pair at Bash and Fatima’s wedding.) I’m confident they’re going to get that happy ending and that it’ll be cute and that’s as much as I really think about it.
Quentin, we hardly knew ya, but you sure made a lasting impression. I wrote you off in the beginning as a bored, rich, functioning alcoholic. Which, to be fair, you were. But what a delight to discover that you were also unfashionably enamored of your wife. When you spend your last day on earth cheering up said wife with shopping and a manicure, then shaming her friend into apologizing to her, you automatically earn a top spot in a couples ranking. I don’t make the rules.
Okay, Tony confronting Andrew about his shit voting record and THEN dropping the bomb about the one-night stand that Andrew obviously forgot about was incredible. I sat up and took notice of them both for sure. By the time Andrew came to Ainsley’s shop to apologize and invite Tony to the musical, I was on board. So you can imagine I was total mush by the time Tony showed up at the musical, let alone when Andrew took his hand mid-show. Aww. I appreciate how they push each other out of their comfort zones in a way that is invigorating for them both. Here’s hoping Andrew’s now a regular at game night.
Now here’s a match that took me by surprise. Not so much that it happened, but that I’m into it. After all, Bryce is at least 20 years older and fresh off an ugly divorce, while Ainsley’s on the rebound herself after a public rejection that would have traumatized anyone. Danger, Will Robinson! Why, then, do I find it so charming that she spends months redecorating his home, oblivious to the fact that he would pay any amount, redecorate any space, just to watch her work? And that he remembers the name of her first love? It could be that I’ve been known to ship a May-December romance or ten. Or it could simply be that they obviously enjoy taking care of each other, suggesting deeper feelings at play. But first they’ll have to work through Ainsley’s cruel comments about Bryce being too old and uncultured for her (ouch), which he overheard (my heart). I had to cheer when he sneered at her “I want to be with you” speech, responded with “I am too old–too old for this shit” before slamming the door in her face. Well deserved. Can they start over? I’ll admit I’m really looking forward to finding out. At least we already know Ainsley gives good grovel.
“Extra” barely begins to describe this ‘ship. Between breaking up over Craig’s secret baby to getting engaged in the wake of Zara’s star turn on the reality dating series Love Chalet, they don’t know how to do anything halfway. True to form, even their wedding is a gaudy, over-the-top affair. In real life, I can’t imagine being friends with such high-maintenance people. Sounds exhausting. But here’s the thing–I never, ever question their pure, uncomplicated love for each other. In fact, I’m quite convinced these two weirdos are literally MFEO. Have they made mistakes? Yes. Craig’s hesitation in telling Zara about his daughter (whom he unknowingly conceived years before meeting Zara) was a giant communication fail. Period. They should have weathered the storm together, a lesson you can bet Craig has taken to heart. And that’s the mark of a healthy relationship: a willingness to grow and learn, together. I see that for Craig/Zara, and I love that for Craig/Zara.
Oh, yes, I did. How could I not? Bash and Fatima may not be the stars of the show, but they are undoubtedly its only cinnamon rolls, too good and pure for this world. Seriously, though, folks: I am SO GLAD it turns out I was allowed to notice the chemistry between them. Bash stole my heart the moment he cheerfully agreed to play chaperone to his 30-something friend on a date and then made friends with the woman’s elderly mother. He’s a prince among men, and I mean that literally. Then there’s Fatima, a lovely, straightforward, drama-eschewing woman who can recognize a sweet, dependable, drama-free man when she spots one. They’re absolutely adorable together, and the way they look at each other for the first time as marrieds? That’s the stuff of fairytales and that’s why they’re #1, baby!
Honorable Mention: Maya/Ainsley
The prize for Biggest Missed Opportunity goes to Maya and Ainsley, who would make a dynamite couple. Ainsley’s Love Actually-inspired welcome for Maya at the airport was sweet and heartfelt, each sign driving home how much Maya means to her. (If only Duffy had been there to take note of how not to be obnoxious and cloying with his own grand gesture). Maya, meanwhile, immediately shuts down her interest in Kash upon learning he’s Ainsley’s fiance. In fact, she puts Ainsley’s happiness over her own several times, and who needs men when you have a best friend like that? Maya/Ainsley may not be canon romantic, but I have little doubt that there’s already an abundance of fanon out there fixing that oversight.
P.S. I reserve the right to fiddle with this list as the rest of the series unfolds and according to my whim. Opinions change, and you would not believe the number of times I rearranged this list already. Yes, as in, while I was writing it.