Recap: The maddening nature of Parks and Recreation this season is destined to continue it seems, with this week bring a strong episode after last episode’s weak landing. Frankly, we came to expect this for a show most likely in its last season, but it is still odd to see it played out on screen.
Parks is at its best when it grabs current issues in local politics, with the caveat being that it shouldn’t have too many storylines going on while it does it. Tonight’s episode was a great example of this; compared to last week when we had four storylines competing for attention we really only had two this week, with a quick foray into D.C. to catch up with Ben and April.
This week Leslie and Ann are trying to stop an epidemic of Chlamydia spreading rapidly amongst Pawnee seniors, and of course, sex is a great (and classic and historic for that matter ) topic for humor. From Andy being grossed out (and surprised) by seniors even engaging in the activity, to odd medical questions for Ann, and the much derived humor from the elderly not hearing, remembering, or perhaps even living through nature’s most natural act, it was a topic that was on point.
Even better was Leslie’s fight against abstinence-only sex education, which of course in Pawnee, is city-wide and not just for school-age children. Heck, even Marsha Langeman, the religious crusader who has been harassing Leslie and her policies since the first episode of season 2, gets a closeted gay husband who is equally as full of zealotry as her. Fun times all around.
The “B”-side story with Tom and Ron was also ripped from the headlines. What person 18 to 29 is not like Tom, checking Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and Reddit, while learning about Ray-J on Wikipedia? Some of live that very life every single day. Ron’s response to take Tom out into the woods and have him chop wood was also a classic Ron way to deal with things. We have always wondered what would happen if Ron’s outdoorsy ways clashed with Tom’s Brook’s Brothers life, and we finally get to see it.
Ben and April don’t get to do much in D.C., but we do get to see them bond as an older brother, younger sister team over the true weirdness of finally meeting Congressman Murray. Who among us doesn’t think our politicians are just powered down robots when the cameras and eyes are not on them?
Solid episode Parks, and we can’t wait to see Lucy Lawless back as Ron’s new girlfriend. See you next week Playmakers!