Parks and Recreation
Similarities: Vast invented world; battles of good, evil and in between; occasional cute dog sightings
Though we love ourselves some Parks & Rec and would try to convince anyone to watch it, the sitcom really does lend itself to viewers who love watching a universe unfold before their eyes. There’s also a ton of GoT references in the show, and while just about every series from Castleto Bunheads can say the same, we’re partial to the ones they make here.
Pressed for Time?: Up for a marathon? Start with Season 2. Skeptical, but in it for the Winterfell jokes? Treat yo self to Season 4’s "Pawnee Rangers" and see if that doesn’t persuade you.
Scott: I feel like Ben was betrayed by calzones — but as you know when you’re betrayed there’s a period of shame and then there’s always forgiveness. I don’t want to predict anything or spoil anything. But I know that forgiveness is something that’s always possibility.
Poehler: I’d like to just point out that Ben is so codependent about his calzones that he often puts his calzones before his work and his friends and his family. And a lot of people are worried. Yes, it’s like, enough’s enough. How many times does a calzone have to disappoint you before you let it go? Like, stop worrying about the calzone’s feelings and like just live your life, man.
Schur: I would only add and emulsify to Amy has said by saying that I think that Leslie and Ben’s bond is so strong and they’re so right for each other, that I don’t think any other man or woman could ever cause any irreparable harm in their marriage. But I do think that what could is the calzone issue. I think that it’s possible down the line that that could be a wedge that comes — that drives them apart. I don’t know. I mean, this is all speculation. But it’s the two things that Ben cares about most in the world and feels the most intensely about are Leslie and pizza wrapped in pastry dough.
Ben, Chris, Ron and Tom: B+
I appreciate that the best of the wedding stuff we’ve seen so far is from Ben’s perspective, since it gives him something to do while Leslie balances the rest of her life — though, I would like to see at least one day of Ben at his new collection of jobs. In any case, the food poisoning was hilarious and extremely satisfying, what with the calzone thread coming back up, the decision to have JJ’s Diner cater the wedding of the millennium and the scene with Ben dialing Tom’s extension via his face. And I love that Tom considers himself a “foodie” because he Instagrams pictures of food, as well as the way that Ron pronounced “toilet bowl.” Oh, and I guess Chris and Shauna are still seeing each other? Sure, why not?
"Pawnee Commons" wasn’t the type of Parks and Recreation episode that will make any Best Of lists, nor will it probably convert any people who aren’t regular viewers into Pawnee fanatics, but it was satisfying, sweet and funny, and what I talk about when I talk about why I’d take an average Parks & Rec over most other sitcoms on TV right now. We knew from the second Leslie mentioned Eagleton what kind of people and places we were about to see, and I enjoyed every second of it… and felt quite empty in that I don’t get to have a balloon-artisan made Leslie and Ben at my desk this very second.
Jerry and Donna: A
They were nonentities in this episode, but I’m giving them a great grade because they were part of the scene where the whole gang crowded around Leslie and Ben for a toast/Ben-threatening session which may or may not have totally made me cry a little bit.
I loved the actual proposal because of course, especially given the intimacy we got to see between Ben and Leslie. Parks & Rec usually leaves those ultra-personal moments behind closed doors (unless they happen in front of other characters, like in "The Trial of Leslie Knope"), so seeing Lesliben in this private and romantic scene felt really very candid, if not a tiny bit strange. Did I think about how it is sad that Amy Poehler is getting a divorce in real life while her fictional character gets to have this beautiful engagement on her show? Pshh, writing that would make me sound like some kind of crazy fangirl, heh heh. Now please, give me a second, because I need to remember this moment and every little thing about how perfect Amy is at this exact moment.