Tuesday, May 5, 2020

What I’m Watching: Parks and Recreation

Parks and Recreation: A Parks and Recreation Special (B+)

I hadn’t realized that it’s been five whole years since this show signed off following an inexplicably truncated and rapidly-aired seventh season. I still remember it so fondly, and if I had to pick any show to have back in a self-aware socially-distanced format, I probably would have picked either this or “The Office,” and, admittedly, this series has always been much more charming thanks in no small part to the innate goodness of its lead character. It was fun to see these actors performing in their own homes, and the explanations for why the characters who were supposed to be married weren’t together were very clever. I enjoyed Leslie’s concern about Ben going down another rabbit hole with the Cones of Dunshire was funny, and Andy locking himself in the shed while April put on five random pieces of clothing was completely believable. Chris being a “super healer” who was isolating in one part of the house while Ann worked in the other was great, though some of the actors were definitely more natural than others, with Rob Lowe as one of the less seemingly comfortable. Seeing a number of recurring players was a treat, and I love that Megan Mullally guest-starred as a tied-up Tammy because she is in fact married to Nick Offerman, who plays Ron. Twenty minutes was probably exactly the right amount of time for this kind of thing, and it was especially welcome thanks to the retrospective special that aired right before it. it would be great to see this crew again, but I hope this fundraising initiative is repeated again for other series as a way to bring casts back together and entertain those of us who would welcome the chance to see them reunited.

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