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Parks and Recreation
Parks and Recreation
TV Series
  • Category:
  • Cast:
    Amy Poehler,Jim O'Heir,Nick Offerman
  • Time:
    22min
Leslie Knope, a mid-level bureaucrat in an Indiana Parks and Recreation Department, hopes to beautify her town (and boost her own career) by helping local nurse Ann Perkins turn an abandoned construction site into a community park. However, what should be a fairly simple project is stymied at every turn by oafish bureaucrats, selfish neighbors, governmental red tape, and a myriad of other challenges. Leslie's colleague Tom Haverford, who delights in exploiting his position for personal gain, is as likely to undermine her efforts as to help her, while her boss, Ron Swanson, is adamantly opposed to government in any form, even though he's a bureaucrat.
Casts
Series cast summary:
Amy Poehler Amy Poehler - Leslie Knope 125 episodes, 2009-2015
Nick Offerman Nick Offerman - Ron Swanson 125 episodes, 2009-2015
Aubrey Plaza Aubrey Plaza - April Ludgate 125 episodes, 2009-2015
Chris Pratt Chris Pratt - Andy Dwyer 125 episodes, 2009-2015
Aziz Ansari Aziz Ansari - Tom Haverford 124 episodes, 2009-2015
Jim O'Heir Jim O'Heir - Jerry Gergich 124 episodes, 2009-2015
Retta Retta - Donna Meagle 120 episodes, 2009-2015
Rashida Jones Rashida Jones - Ann Perkins 106 episodes, 2009-2015
Adam Scott Adam Scott - Ben Wyatt 97 episodes, 2010-2015
Rob Lowe Rob Lowe - Chris Traeger 77 episodes, 2010-2015

Parks and Recreation

Ron's second ex-wife (Tammy Two) was played by Megan Mullally, who, in real-life, is married to Nick Offerman (Ron).

Nick Offerman (Ron Swanson) has a woodworking hobby, as does his counterpart on this show. He has released an instructional DVD in canoe building, and runs a fine woodworking business on the side.

Ron Swanson's staunchly anti-government government official was based on a real city planner whom the show's producers met and interviewed when doing research. The planner was a Libertarian who admitted to them, "I don't believe in the mission of my job."

Chris Pratt (Andy) was such a good physical comedian that frequently the writers would just write "Andy does something physical" into the script, trusting he would come up with something in the moment.

Andy was only supposed to appear as a guest in the first season, but everybody liked Chris Pratt so much, he was promoted to series regular for season two.

The map of Pawnee is a flipped version of the map of Muncie, Indiana.

The character of April had a younger sister named Natalie. This is the name of Aubrey Plaza's real-life younger sister, whom she used as a source of inspiration when playing April.

In reality, the cast and crew all loved working with Jim O'Heir (Jerry, the office scapegoat). The writers felt so bad about constantly being so mean to his character, and by extension, him, that they gave Jerry the picture perfect home life: three beautiful daughters, a beautiful house, and a happy marriage to his wife Gayle (played by former supermodel Christie Brinkley).

In season six, episode one, "London parts 1 & 2", Ben (Adam Scott) asked Andy (Chris Pratt), "So all you did is stop drinking beer?", and Andy replied, "Yeah, I lost like fifty pounds in a month." This is a reference to Pratt's real-life weight loss for his role in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). He lost sixty pounds (27.2 kilograms).

Nick Offerman originally auditioned for the role of Mark Brendanawicz before being cast as Ron Swanson.

In an interview with the cast, Amy Poehler (Leslie Knope) said she wished Bill Murray would play the Mayor of Pawnee. Bill Murray made an appearance as the Mayor in season seven, episode eleven, "Two Funerals".

Jay Jackson (Perd Hapley) was for many years an actual print and broadcast journalist and anchor at news outlets in San Diego, California and Los Angeles, California. After he retired from journalism in the mid 2000s, through a friend's manager, he got a small role as a reporter on a 2007 episode of Dexter (2006). He agreed to allow the manager to send him on other auditions, but only as long as they only were for reporter roles, since that was his professional background, so he ended up also playing reporters on television shows such as Scandal (2012), Revenge (2011), The Closer (2005), The Mentalist (2008), Body of Proof (2011), and BrainDead (2016), as well as in movies such as Battleship (2012) and Fast Five (2011).

The character Tom Haverford changed his name from Darwish Sabir Ismael Gani. Aziz Ansari chose that as Tom's original name, because it is his cousin's name. Ansari also shares with Tom the biographical fact that although his parents were originally from India, he was born and raised in a small town in South Carolina.

Jim O'Heir (Jerry Gergich) originally auditioned for the role of Ron Swanson. The producers liked him so much, that they kept him on the show just "to see how it would play out."

Mayfair Games, makers of Settlers of Catan, were contracted to make Ben Wyatt's Cones of Dunshire look like a professional board game. Instead, Mayfair Games made a playable game with a full set of rules. However, it's complex and dense, so it has not been produced for the market. It was played at Gen Con 2014 in Indiana, where thirty-three people paid one hundred dollars each for a ticket to play, and the Ledgerman position (the scorekeeper who doesn't play) was auctioned off. The event made more than twenty thousand dollars for an Indiana food bank.

After shooting each scene a few times verbatim, the cast members then shot a few more when they improvised to make the scene funnier if possible.

Chris Pratt modelled Andy's singing voice after Eddie Vedder, frontman of the band Pearl Jam, of whom Andy Dwyer is a huge fan.

The series was originally planned as a direct spin-off of Das Büro (2005). It was later re-designed to be an original workplace story that would keep the "mockumentary" format used for the other series, which this show's Executive Producers Greg Daniels and Michael Schur had worked on (Daniels as Creator, Schur as a Writer and Producer).

Paul Schneider claims that his character changed a lot from season one to season two, so he wasn't surprised when Mark was written out at the end of season two.

The show correctly predicted the winner of the 2016 world series. In season seven, episode two, "Ron & Jammy", taking place in early 2017, Lucy tells Tom and Andy that everyone in Chicago is in a good mood because the Cubs won the series. This episode aired in January 2015.

The gag reels on the DVDs contain fake commercials, including ones for Tom's Bistro, Rent-a-Swag, Jamm's Orthodontics, and classic Perd episodes.

Jean-Ralphio (Ben Schwartz) was almost one of Leslie's (Amy Poehler's) love interests, but the producers felt he was too young.

Six of the sixteen episodes of season three were filmed along with the twenty-four episodes of season two, because Amy Poehler was pregnant, so when the show was moved to mid season, the network ordered ten more to have a complete season to air.

The exterior shots of City Hall is Pasadena City Hall, California.

In Amy Poehler's book, "Yes Please" (2014), Amy Poehler writes about her castmates in a way that Aubrey Plaza describes in an interview as something Leslie Knope would do. Poehler sat them down in a meeting to read about her favorite memories with her castmates when the show was about to wrap up for its final season.

Amy Poehler, afraid they were going to turn Leslie Knope into a "female Michael Scott," requested that starting in season 2, they show her character to be talented and successful at her job, with the humor coming from her quirky behavior and eager enthusiasm. The writers listened and went that route starting in season 2.

Ron Swanson has three brothers, named Don, Lon, and Vaughan Swanson.

The network gave the show an original order of thirteen episodes, but Amy Poehler was pregnant, so only six episodes were finally produced.

While a guest on "The Diane Rehm Show", Rob Lowe said that when he first interviewed for the role of Chris Traeger, this show's writers told him that they had based their show on Lowe's previous series, The West Wing (1999). He said that they told him, "we're comedy writers. We're going to write a comedy, but what would the comedy version of The West Wing look like? And the answer to them was, it wouldn't be the White House. It would be Parks and Recreation."

The rusty "sculpture" in Ron Swanson's office is actually a "Czech Hedgehog", a World War II anti-tank obstacle.

For a few episodes in season two, Leslie Knope dates a lawyer played by Justin Theroux. In episode sixteen, "Galentine's Day", co-starring Justin, Leslie discusses soul mates in a talking head, and says to the camera "Oh Jen(nifer Aniston), I really want you to be happy." Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux were married five years after this episode aired. Sadly they divorced 2 years later. So Leslie's remark still applies.

The idea for this program originally came from the Parks and Recreation staff in El Segundo, CA and the name "Ron Swanson" comes from the actual director of the Parks and Recreation department.

The exterior shot of J.J.'s Diner is Landmark Diner on Cheshire Bridge Road in Atlanta, Georgia.

Nick Offerman (Ron) and Aubrey Plaza (April) share the same birthday, June 26.

Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) is repeatedly shown to be a fan of alternative rock band R.E.M. Adam Scott's first ever acting role was as an audience member in the video for the R.E.M. song "Drive" in 1992.

Octavia Spencer auditioned for the role of Donna Meagle.

Amy Poehler and Chris Pratt were named Harvard University's Hasty Pudding Club's Woman and Man of the Year in 2015.

Jerry (Jim O'Heir) gets a trip to his favorite city, Muncie, Indiana. The Pawnee map is just a flipped map of Muncie.

Ben Schwartz originally auditioned for the role of Dave Sanderson before being later cast in the different role of Jean-Ralphio Saperstein.

Chris Pratt admitted that after a few unsatisfactory takes during an early season episode where his character shows up to Ann's house nude as a surprise, Pratt decided to go for a genuine reaction and stripped naked right before the cue. Despite that take being the one used, Pratt was formally reprimanded by the production company, telling him to take the warning seriously; he framed it and hung it on his wall.

Amy Poehler has been pregnant twice during the series' run.

The green rectangular object on Ron Swanson's desk is a U.S. Military M18A1 "Claymore" anti-personnel mine. It is notable for having the words FRONT TOWARDS ENEMY stamped on the front.

Series Producer Alan Yang can be seen in several episodes as Mouse Rat's bouncing bassist.

In season two, episode fifteen, "Sweetums", Nick Newport, Jr. is shown. He is not mentioned again throughout the remainder of the series. When Nick Newport, Sr.'s son runs for city council against Leslie, his name is Bobby Newport. Nick, Sr. and his wife also are in the show several times with no mention of Nick, Jr.

The two statues featured in the opening credits are two landmarks on State Highway 18 in Montpelier, Indiana, a town located in the East-Central region of the state. The first is the Ice Cream Giant at Tin Lizzy, an ice cream shop just outside the town, and the second is the Muffler Man Indian in the center of town.

Ellie Kemper auditioned for the role of Ann Perkins.

One of the show's Creators, Michael Schur, often appeared in the background as an extra.

In the two part series finale, "One Last Ride", during the flash-forward scene with Andy and April; when Andy answers the door for the trick-or-treaters, the child on Andy's left is dressed as Marvel's Star-Lord, a character Chris Pratt plays in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Two out of the three Lonely Island members have had guest apperances in the show (Andy Samberg as a Park Ranger in season two, and Jorma Taccone as a Gryzzle employee in season seven). Jorma has also directed multiple episodes of the show.

Despite being based in Indiana, the whole show was shot in different parts of California.

In season two, episode eight, "Ron and Tammy", Tammy has a bookcase with nonfiction books, two of which are, "Sperm Suicide" and "World War III".

Thomas Lennon auditioned for the role of Ron Swanson.

Rob Lowe and Nick Offerman appeared on The West Wing (1999).

Throughout the series, Ron can be seen sitting at his desk completing crossword puzzles.

Pawnee was founded in 1817, which is likely a reference to the founding of the University of Michigan, located in Ann Arbor, the home town of one of Series Creator Michael Schur. There are also several other references to Ann Arbor throughout the show.

On this show and its predecessor Das Büro (2005), the main characters date someone played by their real-life spouses. On The Office (2005), the woman Michael Scott (Steve Carell) dates (played by his wife Nancy) breaks up with him because she thinks he is creepy. Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) dated a man (played by her husband at the time, Will Arnett) that she thinks is creepy and breaks up with him.

Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt), Kathryn Hahn (Jennifer), Paul Rudd (Bobby Newport), and Rashida Jones (Anne Perkins) appeared in Our Idiot Brother (2011).

Dr. Saperstein (Henry Winkler), the father of Jean-Ralphio and Mona-Lisa Saperstein, is also Ann's OB/GYN. His name (Dr. Saperstein) and profession (Obstetrician/Gynecologist) are references to Dr. Sapirstein (played by Ralph Bellamy) in Rosemary's Baby (1968), who helped trick Rosemary into giving birth to the devil's child.

In season four, episode nineteen, "Live Ammo", there's an Easter Egg in the office of Councilman Pillner (Bradley Whitford). To begin the scene, the camera holds on a framed napkin, with "Pillner for Pawnee" written on it. It was a reference to The West Wing (1999), which starred Whitford. One of the recurring props on the show was a framed napkin that read "Bartlet for America".

Adam Scott and Rob Lowe were both supposed to be temporary characters, but both were added to the show permanently due to their positive reception.

Matt Walsh and Mike O'Malley auditioned for the role of Ron Swanson. Walsh guest starred as Leonard Tchulm, and O'Malley guest starred as Bill Butler.

Kulap Vilaysack auditioned for the role of April Ludgate and guest starred as Ulani.

The chairs that Anne (Rashida Jones) and Leslie (Amy Poehler) sit on in Leslie's office at the end of season six, episode four, "Doppelgangers", appeared in the opening credits of every episode.

The outside footage of Eagleton's City Hall in season six, episode three, "The Pawnee-Eagleton Tip Off Classic", was footage of Las Vegas' City Hall.

In the season six finale, "Moving Up", Joan Calamezzo shows up at Tom's Bistro for the Unity Concert after-party and tells Tom that she would like a "Joan", which consists of "a tumbler of gin with crushed aspirin sprinkled around the rim." Seconds later, she can be seen standing in the restaurant with a glass that has a small, white, and rocky substance around the rim, which can only be assumed to be the aspirin she's talking about.

Adam Scott and Kathryn Hahn appeared in Step Brothers (2008) and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013).

Ben was supposed to be one year older than Leslie, when in real life, Amy Poehler is two years older than Adam Scott.

Season two, episode sixteen and season six, episode seventeen are titled "Galentine's Day".

The Ann Perkins character was added to show when Amy Poehler said she wanted the program to show a true female friendship, which she thought many TV programs lacked.

Nick Offerman, Kathryn Hahn, and Kevin Dorff appeared in We're the Millers (2013).

Aubrey Plaza (April) is self-proclaimed as being "fifty percent Puerto Rican".

All three hosts of the podcast "How Did This Get Made?" have appeared in different episodes. Paul Scheer plays Kaboom founder Keef Slertner, Jason Mantzoukas plays obnoxious cologne creator Dennis Feinstein, and June Diane Raphael plays Eagleton employee Tynnyfer.

Jason Mantzoukas (Dennis Feinstein) and Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt) also worked together on The Good Place (2016) as Derek & Trevor respectively. Both shows were created by Michael Schur.

The show was poorly received in season one by critics and viewers. In fact, the producers were almost certain that the show wouldn't be renewed due to low ratings that they allowed and encouraged the actors to audition for other pilots. NBC saved it at the 11th hour, with the caveat that the show be significantly retooled for the second season.

In 2010, the show was nominated for Outstanding Main Title Theme Music at the Emmys. However, the nomination was revoked, as this was the show's second season, and the nominated theme was the same as the one used in season one. Emmy rules dictate that a show's main title theme is only elegible for its first season unless it changes (such is the case of Monk (2002), which won this award twice for season one, and then again for season two, but only because the theme changed). The producers submitted the song for season one when the show got zero nominations and decided to try again the following year and succeeded. Once it was brought to the Academy by a user of awards site Goldderby, they revoked the nomination and replaced it with Legend of the Seeker (2008).

Paul Schneider said Mark Brendanawicz was rewritten in season 2 due to his unpopularity with fans in season 1, in particular his sleazy, womanizing behavior. He said the writers didn't know what to do with the character, which is why it was dropped after season 2.

Will McLaughlin (Officer Killnose) and Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt) also worked together on The Good Place (2016) episode, The Good Place: What's My Motivation (2017), as Officer Prawnmandler & Trevor respectively. Both shows were created by Michael Schur.

Tatiana Maslany, who plays the doctor Tom fakes an English accent to impress, is Canadian and stars on Orphan Black (2013), in which she speaks with an English accent.

In Season 5; Episode 10 "Two Parties, when the guys go out for their bachelor parties, they end up in a restaurant called "St. Elmo's". Chris (Rob Lowe) starred in "St. Elmo's Fire".

Adam Scott (Ben Wyatt) & Marc Evan Jackson (Trevor Nelsson) also worked together on The Good Place (2016) as Trevor & Shawn respectively. Both shows were created by Michael Schur.

Aubrey Plaza and Nick Offerman were born on June 26. Jason Schwartzman, who guest starred on the show, also shares the birthday.

Andy mentions his love of Pearl Jam throughout the entire series. Two members of the band, Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard, were apart of a band called Mother Love Bone before Pearl Jam in the last 80s. Their front man was also named Andy. After Andy passed away in 1990, Jeff and Stone teamed up with Mike McCready to form what would become Pearl Jam.

Amy Poehler stayed on Saturday Night Live during the first season, unsure if the show was going to be renewed. She commuted back and forth from New York to Los Angeles during this season. Once it was renewed for a second season, she left Saturday Night Live and relocated to L.A.

Many times throughout the series and in multiple episodes it can be seen that April loves to sit on Andy's lap.

Ron Swanson's office has a football, baseball and basketball in it. He is holding one of them at least once almost every episode.

The writers didn't know Nick Offerman could already play the saxophone when they made his character, Ron Swanson, a secret saxophone player.

Leslie's (Amy Poehler) pregnancy with triplets was foreshadowed in season two, episode thirteen, titled "The Set Up", when she goes on a date with the M.R.I. Technician (Will Arnett). He comments on how she has "a great oven" and said "If you wanted to, you could go triplets right off the bat."

After Mark Brendanawicz leaves at the end of season two, he is never mentioned again. He is also the only ex-series regular not to return for the series finale.

Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones left the show on good terms. The decision was mutual amongst them and the showrunners, as their departure made sense for the characters, and allowed them to move on to other projects. Jones, in particular, wanted to focus more on writing.

Originally, Series Creators Greg Daniels and Michael Schur were going to have Leslie date a lot of different men through the course of the show. However, after Leslie and Ben became a couple, they felt so guilty about the prospect of breaking them up, that they had them get married instead.

In season two, episode twenty-three, the show inadvertently foreshadows the final relationships of four main characters: April (Aubrey Plaza) decides to tell Andy (Chris Pratt) how she feels at her twenty-first birthday party, Tom (Aziz Ansari) meets Lucy (Natalie Morales) when he settles his bar tab and asks her out after they hit it off, and the episode introduces Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) and Chris Traeger (Rob Lowe), who each share moments with Leslie (Amy Poehler) and Ann (Rashida Jones), respectively, that eventually lead to their marriages.

In a season seven episode, Tom's future wife Lucy, made a comment about how the people in Chicago are friendlier now that the Cubs had won the series. Though the episode aired in 2014, it had the three-year time jump, correctly predicting the Cubs 2016 series win.

Andy's son is named Jack, the same name as Chris Pratt's real son Jack Pratt.

If you watch the Pilot episode and season four, episode twenty, "The Debate", the camera angle and the way it follows Leslie as she walks out on stage are exactly alike, ingeniously tying together the critically emotional moments of her first Town Hall meeting and her growth, maturing, and confidence as a woman and politician, as she gets ready to debate Bobby Newport for her soon-to-be-but-almost-not-but-then-yes-again City Council seat.

Donna and Tom were the only characters in the show to have a proper wedding on the set date and all according to plan.

In a season two episode, Tom (Aziz Ansari) expressed a desire to open a business called "Tom's Bistro". At the end of season six, Tom opened a restaurant called "Tom's Bistro".

None of the main female characters fully took their husband's last name when they got married. But April had her name legally hyphenated to Ludgate-Dwyer after their wedding. In turn, all of their children had hyphenated names.

At the end of season 6 episode 3, Dopplegangers, Leslie and Ann sit down on a double lawn chair in her office to have "the talk" about Ann leaving Pawnee. This chair is the same one from The Pit next to Ann's house that brought them together. It can be clearly seen at the end of Season 1 episode 6 while Leslie and Mark Brandanowitz sit and talk about building a park...before he falls in The Pit.

In the season four opener, "I'm Leslie Knope", Leslie is wary of running for city council so Ben gives her a rectangular box containing a "Knope 2012" button telling her to follow her dream. This is the same as in the season four finale, "Win, Lose, or Draw", when Ben is wary of going to Washington, D.C. and Leslie gives him a rectangular box with the Washington Monument inside telling him to go. This is tying together their individual times in the spotlight.

In season two, episode seventeen, "Woman of the Year", Ron is made "Woman of the Year" by a women's equality publication, giving him credit for Leslie Knope's success with the "Athena Project". Ron mistakenly calls the project the "Xena Project". In season five, episode three, "How a Bill Becomes a Law", Ron meets a Pawnee resident, Diane, while fixing a pothole in front of her house. They will date and eventually marry. Diane is played by Lucy Lawless, famous for her role as Xena: Warrior Princess (1995).

When Leslie and Ron went to break up with Tammy II at the library, she has the book "The Male Brain" on a shelf in the background.

EXIBUZYW
EXIBUZYW
Just watch it for yourself. I was drawn in by Amy Pohler, someone I didn't really like before I saw this show, and i stayed because of the beautifully drawn characters. Because they're deep characters, they're not gonna slam you over the head with comedy. This ain't My Name Is Earl, people. The show's funny, but in a real, get to know everyone kind of way.

Even though I loved it, I'd say the first season stumbled a bit, but the second season gets funnier with every episode. Try it out, I bet you'll like one character right off the bat, and if you're like me you'll end up loving them all.
Jube
Jube
This show is basically a cute version of The Office. If you haven't seen The Office, it is a hilarious show that is filmed like a documentary. It has a weird vibe because all of the characters seem to know that the cameras are there. They also give asides to the camera which are always funny. The asides in Parks and Recreation are funnier than those from The Office. They seem to be more of a showcase for the actors to show off their comedy, not additions to the plot.

One thing that turns some people off about The Office (that is to say, what sets it apart from other shows), is that it gets incredibly and hilariously awkward. What sets Parks and Recreation apart is that it is incredibly and hilariously cute. Where The Office makes your jaw drop before you burst into laughter, Parks and Recreation gives you a warm smile before you burst into laughter. It makes it a lot of fun to watch.

Another subtle difference from The Office is that aside from Jerry (Parks and Recreation's version of The Office's Toby), is that all of the characters care deeply about one another.

The cast of Parks and Recreation is far better than the admittedly stellar cast of The Office. Amy Poehler lights up the screen every time she is in view. Rashida Jones has much better on screen chemistry with this cast than she ever did during her stint on The Office. This show is incredibly lucky to have Aziz Ansari before he becomes a worldwide phenomenon, because he is well on his way. Don't even get me started on how perfect Nick Offerman plays his role as the motivated slacker, libertarian boss.

In the end the haters will say, "Oh they just stole The Office's idea and put it in City Hall." That is a far to shallow of a response to such a deeply funny show that stands wonderfully on its own.
Felolune
Felolune
I was lukewarm on this show throughout the first season and for the beginning of the second, but the last few episodes have made this the funniest show on air for me. The humor is not always laugh out loud, but I can watch each episode a few times and find new things that make me laugh each time.

The mayor is one of the funniest characters I've ever seen on a show, and April the intern is funny even when she isn't saying anything. Some of the cameos aren't very funny, but all of the basic elements are fantastic and improving each episode. The Office seems to be (very slowly) running out of steam but this show is definitely making up for it.

There's quite a few bad reviews for this show, but I can't suggest it enough. It is the opposite type of humor from My Name is Earl (which it replaced), and I consider that a very good thing.
KiddenDan
KiddenDan
I'm surprised at how many people wrote negative reviews of this show despite it being my most-looked forward comedy of the week, followed by the Office, Curb, Sunny in Phily, and the Peep Show - a great British comedy.

The characters are unique and the comedy comes mostly from subtleties such as intonations, gestures, and camera glances. It's high-end comedic stuff in my opinion. Though Arrested Development was untouchable in this regard. Boy AD was good.

I suppose if you like trite predicable comedy, you wouldn't see it as funny, but the thing about this show is that's it's also fun to watch, the characters are very charismatic on screen, I think the casting was great. Is this 10 lines yet IMDb?

A really great show.
Barit
Barit
There is no doubt that one of the main inspirations of this show was The Office - you will realise this in the first minute of the first episode. However, instead of trying to copy the main points of that show's success, Parks and Recreation has come up with its very own recipe. Amy Poehler is amazing as the lead actress, she plays an extremely enthusiastic city official in a department filled with bludgers and lazy bums.

What sounds a little lame actually becomes very endearing very quickly: all supporting characters have great story-lines, and grow quickly with a light yet sometimes strangely moving plot. The dialogue is fantastic, every show will make you laugh out loud plenty of times, and the roughly 20 minutes of each episode are over way too quickly.

I found myself re-watching the whole two seasons immediately after I had finished them for the first time, and the show holds up easily. Each character gets enough screen time to stay interesting, and very quickly, the show establishes a Simpsons-like range of in-jokes and extras who add even more depth to the story.

Before you know it, you wish your own city had such a department, and you will fall in love with Amy Poehler's stellar performance. An absolute must-watch!
Survivors
Survivors
There was a lot of anticipation for Amy Poehler's new series, at least around here there was, and after eagerly tuning in to the pilot episode and every episode since then, I can honestly say that it has lived up to my expectations!

Parks and Recreation has a sort of dry humor, where the really funny parts are the awkward moments between Leslie (Amy's character) and other characters. It is truly Amy's strong point, as we saw during her (too short!) run on SNL and in movies like "Blades of Glory" and "Baby Mamma". Amy absolutely steals the show, but it might be just because that's how the show has been written; the supporting cast are all strong actors, and, with the right material, could all bring in huge laughs for the show.

It is obvious when watching "Parks and Recreation" that there has been a lot of effort put forth to put out a great show, and I believe they have pulled it off. The show leaves me not only laughing hysterically but also rooting for Leslie and her committee. The show is a welcome addition to my weekly TV schedule, and is worth checking out more than once.
Steelrunner
Steelrunner
There are always a few television shows that seem to "define" a genre every decade or so, and considering Parks and Recreation finished its final run several months ago, I feel it important to revisit the show and the impact it left. Many times it was spurned as "The Office Rip-Off" in its starting days, despite it being more of a brainchild of the writers than anything. It seems safe to say, that after more than seven years on the air, Parks and Recreation has carved its own spot amongst the quirky and well-loved comedies that are hard to come across today.

The show stars hard-working public servant Leslie Knope (played by the amazing Amy Poehler) and a cast of humorous and memorable characters that navigate through bureaucracy and red tape in the local city government to complete projects. The most notable--and perhaps most powerful--asset of this show is its lovable and unforgettable characters, some that will leave you rolling your eyes and chuckling while others will simply make you smile in the most joyous kind of way. The cast has obvious chemistry amongst one another, and this certainly breaks through into the characters in ways that will make a viewer grow more attached to them.

The humor of the show itself also sets Parks and Rec apart from other television shows. While it's apparent the first season struggled to differentiate itself from The Office's "awkward humor", Parks found its stride in the simple "cute humor", the kind that is so innocuous and dumb and simply "cute" that it becomes hard not to laugh at the bumbling antics of the Parks and Recreation branch of the city of Pawnee. The episodes are mixed with the right amount of comedy, wit, and actual drama and storytelling; each character is crafted with the perfect amount of depth, that really separates from other comedy shows that rely on cardboard characters with running jokes to spew the funny. Even in its heartfelt moments, there is always room for laughs, but it never pushes aside the rest of the characters or their development. If you find yourself immersed in Parks and Recreation, it is almost certain you will find yourself immersed with one, more, or maybe all characters.

The simple genius, the style and passion this show was borne of, really marks it as a one-of-a-kind show, one that may not have had all the high ratings or prime-time slots or huge important newspaper reviews, but it became its own, and that's really what mattered in the end. After struggling in the shadow of The Office, and finding its stride in later seasons, Parks and Recreation became its own kind of wonderful recipe, one that delivered its own style of warmth and humor not found in many television shows. It may even define the style of comedy itself; after all, both Parks and The Office made famous the "mockumentary", "talking heads" sort of humor that others are sure to try and replicate. What gave Parks and Recreation a "name" per say, is the fact that the characters were so much larger-than-life, the stories so innocuous and believable, that the avid viewer can begin to believe them too, and find that this show is as heartfelt, funny, and enjoyable as I found it. 10/10
Gna
Gna
This show is really two shows. Pre season three and post season three.

Before season three the show was like the office, the main character is an idiot doing the best they can but failing. The show has very awkward humor and is really funny.

Post season three the show becomes very light hearted and goes for more the comedy the show is known for. It's about a smart capable main character who is a bit weird going against a bad system.

The show is really good and it can be very funny but the change is jarring and I know people who only like post season three and people who only like preseason three, I think this is also reflected by some reviews.

I recommend the characters are awesome.
deadly claw
deadly claw
I've been a big fan of Amy Poehler ever since she played Andy Richter's pigtailed, dental-retainered little sister (with the huge crush on Conan!) on Conan O'Brien's late night show. That first appearance is still the most amazing performance I've ever seen on TV. The addled but adorable Leslie Knope is the absolutely IDEAL character for Amy to play! I'm also thrilled to see Rashida Jones, another of my favorite super-talents, doing a thoroughly delicious characterization as Ann Perkins. Word was that the network was worried about the similarity to The Office. What's to worry? Two genius shows just might be better than one!!! The writing on this show is breathtakingly original and deeply enjoyable. You won't find a better cast anywhere on Earth. This is just another case of "a perfect storm" of comedy excellence on NBC -- along with The Office and 30 Rock. It's well known that the best TV comedy derives from complex, fascinating characters. Along with the creators and scribes of those other two shows, these writers are the absolute best at devising characters that are equally lovable and horrifying -- you can totally revel in their triumphs AND their tragedies!
Oparae
Oparae
I never saw the first few episodes which I intend to get to at some point. Got into Parks and Recreation somewhere in the middle of the first season. It has quickly become one of my favorite shows on television. Up there next to Family Guy. I never really got into Amy Poehler's humor on SNL, but Parks and Recreation showed me just how talented she really is. She is an incredible comedic actress, her timing and expression are dead on and she is sooo cute! I'm glad her talent is showcased so well on Parks and Recreation. The other actors on the show aren't too shabby either. Very talented people on this show, Nick Offerman, Paul Schneider, Aubrey Plaza, and Chris Pratt are my other favorites. And yes, it is "laugh out loud" kind of funny. It is smart humor too. Great characters, great stories. I can't wait to see how it develops.
Kifer
Kifer
I was not sure if I would like this when I started, Season 1 was a bit rough but after that I was hooked. This show was really funny and serious. After watching the finale I felt like I lost an old friend.
Goltizuru
Goltizuru
Don't be fooled by the lower reviews, as they're comparing it to The Office, and have strange reasons for it not being as well done ("Americans can't do British TV"?). This show may have similar audience types as The Office, but that's where the comparisons end - the characters are entirely different archetypes; each with their own storyline, character development, unique humor, and a reason for you to care about them. EVERY character is fully flushed out, which for me, actually sets this show above and beyond The Office (which I loved by the way, but I know believe this show is better based on character development alone). Also, if you found The Office to be awkward or difficult to watch at times- this show is all funny with no discomfort.
Whitebinder
Whitebinder
This show is hilarious, amazing, and just everything you could want in a show! Humor, love, friendship, characters building, jokes, and everything else!
Aurizar
Aurizar
I browsed through the reviews, probably seeking a reinforcement of my opinion that the show has lost its previous charm. Most of the reviews are pretty old, so I still don't know if it's just me.

I must start by saying that I loved the first seasons, with the often awkward and politically incorrect Leslie. I loved "the Office" type of humor, but done more humanely and with a lot more charm.

In the latter seasons I noticed that they began transforming Leslie from the often inadequate and clueless leader to a model to all women and girls alike. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but now the jokes are not quite the same, I do not recognize the character and from my point of view the humor has taken a bit hit.I cannot help but feel a little betrayed.

On the other hand, there are characters that, instead of benefiting from some minor changes which could make them less annoying, they are actually devolving: Andy Dwyer is such an example. How much more stupid are they going to make him? And April - her passive-aggressive and detached behavior has transformed into pure aggressivity aimed at Ann Perkins, most of the time for no good reason at all. I do not find that funny.

Perhaps people still like the show as it is today, maybe more. But for me, while I do like to see some evolution in the characters, as one cannot laugh at the same things over and over again, I do not appreciate when they do a complete 180... Or when their negative traits are exaggerated more and more until they lose any humanity they might have had.

The first two seasons would get a 10 from me, but as it is, I settle on a 6.
Nikobar
Nikobar
So far, since there's only been three episodes of the show, it's been pretty great. The third episode has definitely been the funniest so far, i feel like it's going to gain momentum and really prove to be just as funny as it's cousin "The Office." P&R has gotten generally positive reviews, and as for the negatives i say let the show grow. it's only been THREE episodes, "The Office" was NOT an instant classic if you all recall, it was on the chopping block a few times (and also had to try and crawl out of the massive shadow of it's brilliant British original). Amy Poehler is one of the funniest comedians right now and deserves her own time to really shine. Aziz, from the hysterical one-season sketch show Human Giant, is definitely a scene stealer, as well as Poheler's scowling, anti-government boss. It's got all the right ingredients to become another comedy gem. Give it a chance, relax, and let the best Thursday night (8:30-10) line-up on NBC pump you full of awe-smacking awesome. oh, and lighten up ;)
JoJosho
JoJosho
I started Parks and Rec from a recommendation since I love the Office. I was hesitant at first because it seemed like it was almost a rip off with the whole fake-documentary style comedy where characters break the fourth wall and speak to the camera (and thus, the audience), and it does take place in a different kind of office: the Parks and Recreation department for a town called Pawnee, Indiana.

But let me tell you, I was wrong. I found I enjoyed this show just as much as the Office. While the style was similar, the characters make this show so enjoyable. Every single character is so well developed, unique, and funny. They are caricatures of different people that we all have in our lives, and yet each one has qualities that make you like them. Unlike the Office, you don't have to worry about secondhand embarrassment/super uncomfortable situations, which is a plus.

Parks and Recreation is a show that you will find yourself quoting constantly, which to me is it's own metric of success in anything that I watch. And as the title of this review states: it will have you laughing out loud like an idiot even if you're watching by yourself. Parks and Recreation is fresh, original, funny, and has some great emotional moments even though the circumstances are sometimes outrageous. I will admit that I teared up over a memorial concert for a mini-horse called "Lil' Sebastian". There is also some really great satire for anyone interested in politics, or like myself, has little time for politics. Either way, the comedy there is undeniable.

As an aside, for any Chris Pratt fans out there like myself, this is a good show to watch for him alone (though as I mentioned before, all of the characters are great), and it's really neat to watch because he does transform physically throughout the show because he clinched Guardians of the Galaxy towards the end of the series (in case you are like me and enjoy that sort of tidbit).

Highly recommend.
Jediathain
Jediathain
Parks and Recreation is a funny show that started out slow but tuned into a hit sitcom that was extremely addicting to watch. I know myself because I binge watched the series. Amy Pohler did a terrific job starring and producing in the show as well as making people laugh. Nick Offerman personally my favorite character on the show had over 50 different quotes that made me laugh. Christ Pratt and Aubrey Plaza made a hilarious and terrific couple on the show which also took them to further stardom for the actors. Rashida Jones Leslie's beast friend in the shows had the perfect reactions. Aziz Ansari another one of my favorite characters on the show had a fun amount of swagger and was enjoyable to watch him. Rob Lowe also did a perfect job at being a crazy healthy boss to the characters as well as being Bens friend. And for Jerry he was obviously always being made fun of and hilarious to watch. Parks and recreations final episode was a touching tribute to the shows previous episodes and personally my favorite episode. All in all Parks and Recreation is a hilarious and touching show with a great cast and shall be treasured for years to come.
Vishura
Vishura
Parks and Recreation is a rare gem in the comedy business. There is never a dull moment.

Parks and Rec is highly amusing and addictive to watch. You won't be able to stop watching after you watch the first few episodes! The story line is funny and full of plot twists. With seven seasons you are sure in for a ride!

I rate this a 9 out of 10
Kann
Kann
Honestly, without a doubt, Parks and Rec is so fantastic I believe it needed more praise than it got. The characters are so funny and the overall tone of the show is just fun and great. It can always can sustain multiple laughs through multiple viewing times. Best television show to binge and is completely different to it's sister TV show: The Office. Although the Office came first, it tackled more of a relatable tone of the American Working life and its perks with it but Parks and Rec brought light hearted characters with fantastic character arcs and legendary comedic writing. Brilliant. Definitely recommended
Bladecliff
Bladecliff
I have been a Saturday Night Live fan for too long. I like Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope, an idealistic parks and recreational director, for Pawnee, Indiana. The show is based about the parks and recreation department in a small Midwestern town. Amy Poehler should be on the list for Emmy nominees for Best Actress in a Comedy Series. She shines as Leslie Knope. I only wished that Lorne Michaels would start developing sitcoms with his Saturday Night Live alumni like Poehler and Tina Fey. It's worth the investment and we need to laugh in times like this more than ever. The show has a quirky, offbeat sense of humor and a supporting cast that doesn't seem familiar yet but I'm sure I'll recognize them in time. Anyway, guest stars like Megan Mullally is worth watching.
Roru
Roru
Once you get all the way through the series, get ready to have this show on repeat when there's nothing else to watch. One of my all-time favorite tv shows.
Low_Skill_But_Happy_Deagle
Low_Skill_But_Happy_Deagle
I've heard a number of people say that this show isn't funny which is not true at all. Probably the funniest show I've ever seen making something which is probably a mediocre joke and making 10x funnier with an amazing cast. None of the characters seem to be similar and all have their own personality traits. Taking somewhat funny and unrealistic subjects and mixing them with the struggles of real life politics.

The characters are Leslie Knope (Amy Phoeler) a woman who loves her job and is trying to get to the top of her profession.

Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) a middle aged man who hates the government and only really cares about sports and food.

Tom Haveford (Aziz Ansari) he is constantly trying to sell his weird business ideas and constantly failing.

April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza) she basically hates everything.

Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) he is a nice and kind guy overall but is unfortunately a complete idiot.

Chris Trager (Rob Lowe) he's a completely healthy always happy and nice guy, so nice infact he broke up with someone and she didn't even notice.

Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) Leslie's love interest.

Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones) Leslie's friend ... ... that's LITERALLY IT.

And finally the greatest character in anything ever... ... Jean Ralphio Saperstein (Ben Shwartz) I can't explain you just have to see him.

I REALLY urge you to watch this show it's one of the greatest things I've ever seen!
Cktiell
Cktiell
Note: I have seen all 7 seasons.

Before watching this show, I thought The Office was my favorite sitcom. Parks & Rec has now taken that title. After a rougher first season, each of the characters brings several laughs in every episode.

If you only want to watch the glory moments, stop watching after season 5. Season 6 and 7 are still funny, but not at the level of the previous seasons.
Hiylchis
Hiylchis
A documentary style sitcom, "Parks and Recreation" is a show about the lives of the Parks and Rec department in Pawnee, Indiana, specifically Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) as she strides to make the most out of her position in the department. At first glance, it feels like a spin-off to "The Office" and it isn't until the premiere of the second season that the show starts to take shape with Poehler being the most lovable character on the show, Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) becomes everyone's mood and Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) well, you can't hate Chris Pratt. While other characters of the show never feel left out or just side-characters as everyone gets their chance to shine during the seven season run. In my opinion,this show has some great running gags and with a rocky start but a perfect ending this show was simply awesome.
sobolica
sobolica
This show will inevitably be compared to the Office, partially because of the similarities, the fact that its by the same producers, and that the show took over for the Office.

For those of you that are not going to read this whole thing, here's what you should know................this is a great show that is definitely worth investing your time in, though there are several negative aspects that hold it back from being a true masterpiece.

To go into more detail, lets get the cons out of the way. The show during its first season or two feels like it is trying to be the Office. Sure, that is probably natural, and it is certainly a pro that the show shakes that mold and becomes it's own thing. However, if I had to knit-pick, here are my serious complaints with the overall story. First, several characters have problems that I just cannot understand why the writers did not change these aspects over time. Gary/Gerry/Larry, etc is UNFAIRLY bullied the entire show. For a show that uses a lot of progressive ideas, the idea of unnecessarily bullying him is just straight up wrong. Comparisons can be drawn to Toby from the Office, but Gerry is wrongfully mistreated. He's a nice character, and though he can be clumsy he never got his story arc to where he was actually respected. Tom, can be extremely annoying throughout most of the show. Maybe its just not my type of humor, but he is annoying. He evolves and matures over time, and its a wonderful arc, but almost every scene with him in the first 4 or so seasons is unbearable. His friends John Ralfio and his annoying sister are a waste of time. The last bit of complaints is the amount of immature fart jokes. You'd think you were watching some childish Cartoon Network show. Once or twice is fine, but talking about or showing farts is just disgusting and really sad that an adult show would stoop to that level.

With that out of the way, let's talk about why I love this show. Like I said before, it becomes its own show as time goes on. Almost all characters change for the better, and the little expanding that happens welcomes fresh faces that add so much to the story. I knew Ron Swanson was an internet fan-favorite, but I never knew how much I would fall in love with Chris, Rob Lowe's character. He is without a doubt the funniest character on the show. He steals almost every scene. Overall, the show has memorable characters, and almost all have their moments to shine, unlike the office. Cameos from famous politicians here and there doesn't hurt either.

As the title says, Parks and Rec is better and worse than the Office at the same time. Unlike the office, almost every season is enjoyable. The final season or two of the office was almost unbearable to watch, while Parks and Rec ends on almost a high note. The characters are not as memorable or lovable as the Office's cast, but they still are solid characters. I recommend this show to anyone. It has it's setbacks for sure, and they cannot be overlooked, but this is worth some stretches of binging on Netflix. You will not regret it.