TV Review: Parks and Recreation Season 5 Episode 15
Well, now that all that wedding bullshit is out of the way, I guess it’s time for some filler?
At least it’s good filler, though.
TL;DR Leslie gets a classic problem>embarrassment>victory plot. And Ben starts his new job that I forgot about because it hasn’t been mentioned in forever.
So Ben and Leslie return home from their honeymoon and are ready to get back to business. Leslie is prepping for the Correspondents’ Lunch, which is an event where the Pawnee press and government workers roast each other. Leslie has a great speech prepared, but is fucked over by some tabloid reporter who steals her speech. Revelation of email hacking and take-down ensues. Meanwhile, Ben begins working for the Sweetums Foundation. He calls in Andy, April and Tom to help him choose their first charity to support. And Ann wants Chris’ sperm.
I’m just glad that the wedding is finally out of the way and we can get back to business.
Why I hate this episode:
Lot 48 is again pushed out of focus. It’s been 5 seasons, guys. Let’s go already.
Following up my quip from last episode about how the lowest Parks and Recreation will allow a character to sink is slight disappointment, then they’ll follow up with a consolation prize, well guess what happens to Andy this episode? Ben offers him a job. So Andy had a grand total of 1 full and 1 part episode of moping before being magically rescued just because. I was right.
Andy’s idea isn’t even that good. He chooses some music program for at-risk kids. Ben initially overrules him for an ambulance service, but because the plot calls for us to feel bad for Andy, Ben decides Andy’s opinion is valid for consideration. Um, I’m pretty sure an ambulance is more important.
April even explicitly orders Ben to make Andy feel better. Is nobody amoral anymore?
Chris and Shauna apparently broke up, but are already flirting and shit again. Have come conviction.
Oh, and although it’s a small thing, Leslie’s Pawnee Sun nemesis Kim kinda just comes out of nowhere. Up until now, the only reporter Leslie has had any real contact with is Shauna. But I guess now that she’s a proper love interest for Chris, we need a new journalist enemy. Obvious construct, much?
Reasons to watch:
The plot between Leslie and Kim is kinda fantastic, though. The animosity may be totally forced, but watching Leslie with a can of “whoop ass” (see above) is just too perfect.
In a rare move for Parks and Recreation these days, Leslie gets totally fucking annihilated by Kim. Kim steals her entire speech. Leslie then desperately tries to come up with new material, but doesn’t. And she bombs the fuck out on that stage. It’s refreshing to watch Leslie actually face some existant conflict.
Her eventual trumping of Kim is fun, too. Having guessed that Kim must have hacked her email account, Donna suggests a scheme to send Leslie fake emails regarding health concerns. Kim, predictably, falls directly into the trap (which involves Star Wars jargon. Naturally). Bonus points for Donna goin’ sassy on her.
Bitch April pops up for a brief moment. She pretends to be interested in Leslie and Ben’s honeymoon. Nobody notices. But I did. And I liked it.
April also claims to have only showed up to Ben’s office to turn down his request for help at choosing a charity. I lol’d.
Ron brings some apathy to the table, too. Ann goes to him for advice about her wanting Chris’ baby juice. He doesn’t care. He later does push Ann to come out and ask Chris, but I suspect this was only out of self-interest. See, Ron can be helpful without being sappy. It’s possible.
Tom is on top of the selfish game this episode. He explicitly only participates in helping Ben so he can abuse the amazing lunch privileges. Materialism!
Leslie references Neve Campbell. Woo, 90s.
Ann turns out to be awful at coming up with jokes. After making a dream wedding dress in an inhuman time limit last episode, it’s important to see her failing at something again.
Oh, and Leslie really is magnificent in “petty bitch” mode. Maybe I could learn something from her.