Leslie’s Under Fire in “Parks and Rec”


Even though there’s a recall election, the Leslie Knope committee is still campaigning in full force, complete with farting dolls for the kids. Leslie’s only down four points in the most recent popularity poll. Her fellow council members, though, want the gap between her and her opponents to grow. They get the perfect opportunity in “Gin It Up” when Donna accidentally sends a wonderfully racy tweet from the parks department Twitter account. Let’s see how they got there.

Leslie and Donna

Jamm, Dexhart, and the other councilmen are trying their hardest to delay all of Leslie’s bills, including cutting their meetings short to prevent her from even presenting them. Just after Jamm straight up tells her he wants her recalled because he doesn’t like her, Chris drops in and to tell her there’s a problem: Donna sent a tweet including the phrase “Hope you like tongue baths, you big nasty fireman” – with eggplant emoji, of course – from the parks department’s Twitter instead of her own. Jamm, of course, found out immediately and called a press conference, promising to blow “Twitter Watergate” way out of proportion.

At the hearing, Jamm is not shy about wanting the “scandal” to blow up. Leslie is honest; she tells them exactly what happened without mentioning Donna’s name, but Jamm tells her to stop stonewalling. TYPICAL. He’s definitely one of the more insufferable characters on this show.

It turns out, though, they have access to Donna’s personal Twitter account thanks to her hairdresser, Typhoon, whom Jamm apparently sees, too. She’s been frustrated with her workload and Leslie (#BitchBoss). When her tweets are read aloud, she tells Leslie “Sometimes you’re kind of annoying. I thought that was your thing.” Naturally, Leslie is upset. She thinks Donna genuinely hates her.

We already know that’s not the case, and Chris confirms it later when Leslie asks him if she’s annoying. He said, in so many words, that she can be. Leslie has a strong personality – we’ve known this since the pilot. He also reveals that has been Donna tweeting nice things, too. The hearing committee naturally avoided them. She’s incredibly supportive of Leslie’s campaign and, and she’s not shy about praising her strong, powerful demeanor, inspiring #BossBitch. The two meet up and apologize to each other. Leslie  comes with an apology present, obviously: Donna’s favorite lipsticks and nail polishes complete with a schedule so they can wear them at the same time. The ladies head back to the hearing, make its stupidity known, and get back to work.

Ron and Ben

Ben comes to Ron at Leslie’s behest, hoping he’ll sign his will as a witness. Ron, naturally, doesn’t feel that wills are important, and he tells Ben this while cleaning a crossbow (“Literally everything is a weapon.”). He’s had the same will since he was eight: “Upon my death, all of my belongings should transfer to the man or animal who has killed me,” complete with symbols that only the man who kills him will know. Ben urges him to visit a lawyer and draft up a will because he has, you know, a family now, but Ron isn’t into it – it would involve talking to someone practicing one of his top three most worthless occupations. It’s learning all of his possessions will go to the government after his death that finally convinces him.

At the law offices of Babip, Pecota, Vorp, and Eckstein (a wonderful sabermetrics easter egg courtesy of show runner Michael Schur, a former proprietor of FireJoeMorgan.com), Ben gets a stern talking to about his pun usage (“Check the accountant crap at the door.” “Yes, sir.”). Ron refuses to fill out asset and liability forms because he doesn’t want anybody know to know exactly how much he’s worth. Apparently, it’s a lot. The lawyer thinks he’s joking, but Ron never jokes. It’s “another word for lies!” They leave once Ron learns about all of the extra forms he’ll have to figure out.

Back at the municipal building, Ben thinks Ron is having difficulty confronting his mortality, but this is obviously not the case. He’s been thinking about his future killer for decades, after all. Ron tells his first joke ever (“You’re onto something here.”), and we learn why he’s so hesitant about doling his possessions out to his loved ones: he doesn’t want to spoil his children. He’ll leave them $50 for a cab ride home from his funeral and a steak dinner, but for everything else, they’re on their own. He finally gets a real will, though, and he wants Ben and Leslie to take care of the kids if anything ever happens to Diane. They’re second in line to the 90-year-old married couple, one half of whom is the maitre’d at his favorite steakhouse, Charles Mulligan’s.

April and Tom

Tatiana Maslany of Orphan Black guest stars as Tom’s accent-inspiring crush, Nadia. She comes into the parks department hoping to secure the park as a mobile hospital location because of Pawnee’s predisposition to weird diseases. Tom is so nervous that he adopts an English accent in order to appear cooler. April tells him to drop it or else he’d have to keep it up forever. Tom jut sees this as the possibility of marriage.

A glitter-covered Tom’s courtship includes many coffees, daiquris, and the return of DJ Roomba, but his most “successful” tactic is “bureaucratic incompetence.” He has her continue to fill out meaningless forms to keep her around, but she figures this out soon enough. Of course she does! She’s a doctor, duh.

Tom and April decide to track her down at the hospital, where he’s supposed to be honest with her. He gets about as far as “We reserved the park” before April has to take over and tell the truth for him. April and Nadia talk about Tom while he can only stand there and scream silently, but it’s a successful conversation. Tom lands his dream date, and all is right in the world.

About Sam Sciarrotta

Hi there! I'm Sam. I like baseball, Bruce Springsteen, tomato pie, and most other things. I'm looking at you, but I'm thinking about Breaking Bad. 2012 college graduate and budding journalist.

Posted on October 21, 2013, in Comedy, NBC, Primetime, Sitcoms and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: