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Parks and Recreation Review: A Double Feature

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Last night's Parks and Recreation double feature provided some much-needed relationship progression with Leslie and Ann, and some much desired progression with Leslie and Ben.

I’ve wondered how long we would have to wait for a big blowout between the former two. While most of "The Fight" was fueled by Tom’s Snake Juice, it did have its merits.

Leslie wants Ann to more aggressive with her life and her job and feels she needs to push Ann along, which is why she signs her up for the Health Department job.

Leslie Knope  Photograph

While I don’t entirely agree with Leslie’s methods everything she says is true. For most of the season Ann has been this periphery character in terms of characterization and the Parks Department.

I understand she’s dealt with some pretty bad (even excessively positive) breakups, but Ann’s behavior is very much out of character, sleeping around excessively, dumping men at the drop of a hat. It’s not Ann.

I hope this new Health Department job begins to right Ann’s character path especially since she’s much more integrated with the rest of the cast now. I only wish she was integrated sooner.

It warmed my heart to watch Ben help mend things between Ann and Leslie and in the process finally finds out his feelings for Leslie are reciprocated. The sweet moments with Ben and Leslie are quickly becoming my favorite scenes in the series.

Before moving on to "Road Trip," I absolutely loved watching the entire department get wasted from the Snake Juice. Watching Ron dance was easily one of the funniest things he’s done yet. It may have elicited a few embarrassing snorts from me.

Of the two episodes I enjoyed “Road Trip” more. The Ben and Leslie stuff was well done. Watching Leslie try to find so many different ways to distract her and Ben was hilarious, especially the history of the ladder and Banjo music.

The way Ben expressed his feelings to Leslie by description of Pawnee was priceless. It was sweet, a little reserved, and perfect for Leslie. And, finally, after all the distractions when no one is looking he kisses her.

The rest of the stories didn’t do much for me. Tom’s “Know Ya Boo” game while providing wonderful tension and drama for Andy and April left more to desired.

Chris Traeger Photograph

It also felt out of place that Donna would know so much about Jerry.

 While Chris’ constant interruptions proved to be maddening only because he kept throwing off the pace for Ben and Leslie.

Finally, Ron’s teachings for the little girl were, of course, some of the funniest scenes in the episode. Especially when the mother comes back to Ron with her little girl’s report on why government matters and her answer is “it doesn’t.”

I was almost on the floor in laughter.

 Other thoughts:

  • I love that both Ben and Leslie buckle their file carts during the road trip.
  • Everyone needs a CGI Puppy cohost.
  • Snork Juice
  • “Baba Booey”
  • Chris is very good at playing the Air Banjo.
  • Neutral Milk Hole

What did you think of this week's Pawnee double feature? Read some of last night's best Parks and Recreation quotes here and comment below!


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 5.0 / 5.0 (27 Votes)

Nick McHatton is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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I didn't think it was unusual for Jerry and Donna to know each other. She takes every opportunity to mention her Benz, and Jerry said she's always talking about Prince. You get to know your coworkers like that after working with them for years and years. I loved how Ben just grabbed Leslie and kissed her! Way to take charge! He is absolutely adorable, in an elfin kind of way, but that move was dead sexy! Can't wait to see where this goes.


I agree with Andrew, the show keeps improving as the season progresses. Ron Swanson's dance moves were hysterical! Nice write-up!! I more-or-less agree with a majority of your insight on the characters.


AMAZING episodes (I specially loved "The Fight")... this series keeps getting better and better.