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"Except that next season four of them are Cylons."
April 25, 2014 7:57 PM   Subscribe

Parks & Recreation shook up the show's status quo in their season finale. Producer Mike Schur discusses next season - likely the show's last. Alan Sepinwall's review of the two-part finale.
posted by crossoverman (39 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
After watching it, I am still quite shocked that it was not the series finale. But I also feel like Parks & Rec has a finale-feeling episode sortof often, so.

The cameos were cool, but my favorite part was the return of the Cones of Dunshire.
posted by likeatoaster at 8:10 PM on April 25 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I finished it and thought that it would've made an excellent series finale.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:25 PM on April 25 [1 favorite]


I watched last night's episode in a panic after seeing the AV club headline (Michael Schur confirms: Parks And Recreation finale means what you think it means) and nearly cried because I thought it was all over. Considering they probably only have one season left, I'm glad it won't be spent on pregancy/baby stuff.

Amy and I had breakfast a week ago and I laid out the scenarios the room has discussed

omfg now I'm headcannoning that all of their meetings take place in the company of breakfast foods.
posted by Betty_effn_White at 8:27 PM on April 25 [6 favorites]


Also Leslie's political fangirl awkwardness continues to be hilarious.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:53 PM on April 25 [2 favorites]


I just finished watching the episode on hulu. I'm completely on board as long as they don't stick to that evil fast paced Sorkin style they did at the end.
posted by fishmasta at 9:04 PM on April 25


I want to be very clear that I hope so hard that as suggest by the AV Club review, someone spends most of the next season in a terrible fat suit and someone else grows a fucking awesome moustache. I have no other requirements than these, not even that the episodes are funny.
posted by Copronymus at 9:06 PM on April 25 [3 favorites]


Loved it. My favorite current show.
posted by wuwei at 9:20 PM on April 25


I loved that I had no idea Michelle Obama would be making an appearance (unlike when Joe Biden did), so I got to be pretty much as shocked as Leslie.

I know Schur referenced BSG as an inspiration, but he could have been referencing Mad Men, which also had a Season 6 finale that felt like it could have very much been a series finale, setting up the actual final season. Speaking which, I also love how John Hamm's cameo was so brief that it's barely been mentioned in the post-show chatter.

And skipping baby time was a smart move. I'm in for Season 7.
posted by dry white toast at 10:30 PM on April 25


After last week's episode, I was wary and thought about not watching for a while. Leslie has in so many ways been a feminist icon--the woman who's largely unrepresented, who's found a family and love and happiness and doesn't necessarily need kids to complete that. Plus, more personally, I've had miscarriages and fertility issues, and the idea of this thing I love turning into A Show About Babies was really offputting.

I watched this week's episode and am super fucking relieved. I'm sure that some people will be sad, but jumping forward a couple years to wrap up the show lets us continue to focus on the established characters and their arcs--I want to see Donna being amazing and Tom's Bistro making a shitload of money, and I want to see Andy and April doing...well, who fucking knows, building an apartment building out of Lego or something. The fast forward is, I think, the best of all worlds.
posted by MeghanC at 10:50 PM on April 25 [3 favorites]


I did love that Barney The Accountant got to be there for just a minute. That guy's happy Muppet smile is one of the greatest things ever to have appeared on TV. On the recent episode where Ben takes the job, in the scene where they thrown him a calzone party, there was so much joy in that room I though my heart would burst.

I think what I am saying is that I would like a Ben / Barney spinoff or at least some serious fanfic please.
posted by ominous_paws at 10:50 PM on April 25 [13 favorites]


I thought the Li'l Sebastian hologram was a nice touch.
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 10:55 PM on April 25 [3 favorites]


My partner gets irritated every time I get excited about Ben being excited about Letters to Cleo.

It really did feel like a finally, because so many things were brought together. Nothing was forced and so many of the cameos were legit callbacks, from Genuwine being Donna's cousin to the Bobby Knight Rangers.

Now all they need to do is transition Craig from cartoon to fleshed out human, like pretty much everyone else on the show went through, and I'll be set.
posted by thecjm at 11:29 PM on April 25 [1 favorite]


I read somewhere that since Parks was frequently in danger of being canceled (thank god NBC had nothing to replace it with) the writers/showrunners always planned a story arc for each season that would work as a series finale if they didn't get renewed.

The three year jump thing really threw me for a loop. I thought at first that was just a little peek into the future (how cute were those kids?) - I didn't realise it was an actual time jump for next season. I applaud the showrunners for making such a bold move. I hope Lesley is on her way to becoming Mayor of Pawnee.

The cameos were great. I love that all the minor characters on the show make random appearances throughout the series. Like Barney the account taught QuickBooks at Leslie's dinner party way back in season 2 (before Ben was a character). I really hope he will be working for Ben in some capacity.

Basically I adore everything about this show and I am going to be emotionally incapacitated when it ends next year.
posted by littlesq at 1:32 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]


I wonder what the Saperstein twins are up to in 2017.
posted by Pizzarina Sbarro at 1:38 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]


I thought the Li'l Sebastian hologram was a nice touch.


Never forget
.
posted by littlesq at 1:41 AM on April 26 [7 favorites]


I know Schur referenced BSG as an inspiration

He meant specifically the time jump, of which there was a visual reference - pushing into the photograph and pulling out. I think the washed-out colours of the last scene was a visual reference to BSG, too.

I don't think they will or should change the style that dramatically for the next and final season, but it was fun that it was this fast-paced Sorkin-esque moment with random Jon Hamm cameo. "Thanks for a fun three years!"

Amazing.
posted by crossoverman at 2:17 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]


I hope Lesley is on her way to becoming Mayor of Pawnee.

I bet they're gunning for POTUS.

And yeah, relieved that the triplets aren't the focus, but just part of many things happening for Leslie.
posted by mochapickle at 5:39 AM on April 26


I have a question: where was Andy when Ben & Leslie took the cab to the airport (but sidetracked to walk through the redwoods to the Golden Gate)? Seems like he would've shared a cab with them and it's not like Andy to have stayed in the cab. I am overthinking this.
posted by item at 6:42 AM on April 26


Now that the show takes place in 2017 I wonder how they'll deal with the 2016 presidential election having already happened. I'm betting they're living in a timeline where Hilary is president and Biden just stayed vp because.
posted by AndyP at 6:53 AM on April 26 [2 favorites]


I know this was an episode back, but did anyone else have a hard time actually believing that they were having triplets, because the news was delivered by the Arrested Development lawyer? It took a solid 3-4 minutes for me to realize there would be no gotcha.
posted by likeatoaster at 7:02 AM on April 26 [6 favorites]


...where was Andy when Ben & Leslie took the cab to the airport (but sidetracked to walk through the redwoods to the Golden Gate)?

The odd thing about that scene was that Ben and Leslie appeared to be leaving the airport in the cab, not arriving. Maybe they had just dropped Andy off?
posted by Thorzdad at 7:18 AM on April 26


likeatoaster: hell yes.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:03 AM on April 26


Honestly, as great as the hologram was, I just about fell out of my chair when Ginuwine played "Pony"* as a Lil' Sebastian tribute.

*Miniature Horse
posted by Maecenas at 9:51 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]


This doesn't deserve its own post in the blue, especially with all of the Parks & Rec stuff up here lately, but here's An Oral History of Cones of Dunshire.

Also, with all the shark-jump-accusers from that other thread please step forward for a plate of crow?
posted by Sunburnt at 10:09 AM on April 26 [4 favorites]


Any guesses as to what Ben's tux-worthy "big night" is referring to in the final sequence?
Inauguration as Mayor of Pawnee, maybe?
posted by rocket88 at 11:41 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]


Inauguration as Mayor of Pawnee, maybe?

I was thinking that too - or he won an award for Cones of Dunshire.
posted by littlesq at 11:53 AM on April 26 [2 favorites]


Loved the part about Ben's game, but the rest of it was one of the dullest P&R episodes of the series. I feel like I was watching a totally different show.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:03 PM on April 26


So wait - Ginuwine is a real person IRL?
posted by jpdoane at 5:43 PM on April 26 [3 favorites]


I would be really pissed if my new boss insisted on moving the office from Chicago to a shitty little town in Indiana where everyone already hated her. I was hoping the ending would be more like Lesley going "You know what? Fuck you too, Pawnee, I'm done with this shit." One of the things that irked me the most about this show was how badly she was treated by the town. Which I guess was supposed to be funny? But I just found it hard to watch
posted by bleep at 5:50 PM on April 26 [3 favorites]


I made my poor kid almost cry when we watched it because I was certain it must be a series finale. We were both also relieved that there's not going to be a whole year of Leslie-as-a-clown-car jokes.
posted by looli at 7:04 PM on April 26


All these comments got me scared someone died or Leslie lost the children or something! So I was surprised that actually nothing much changed lol. Fun episode, tied up a lot of threads but still lots to play around with for next year I think.

The show continues to slide into schmaltz, trading jokes for Valuable Lessons (Andy for instance hasn't been as funny since he got married nor Tom since he got responsible) but I don't give a crap--it's still the best comedy on TV that actually cares about its characters.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:12 PM on April 26 [1 favorite]


"Thanks for a fun three years!"

Christ, I just realized why this line is so funny.
posted by EmGeeJay at 9:37 PM on April 26


I'm mostly excited to see what Perd is up to in 2017.

I assume he has taken up residence on the moon.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:07 PM on April 26 [1 favorite]


Okay, re-watching the final bits in preparation for this post, I realized I was mistaken about what I was gonna post about. It is the same room, it just looked very different with lighting and the clutter. But, until I did that, I was honestly not clear whether this was Pawnee in 2017, or Chicago in 2017. April and Andy have nothing particularly tying them to Pawnee and could easily have moved in the intervening three years, Larry Terry was the one person who could move, and nobody in the show actually said Pawnee in the last scene. Grant had left it with running the proposal up the flagpole, not a confirmation of Pawnee as the new regional office, and Leslie's talk about new beginnings wasn't specific, and the way the producer's interview is phrased left open the possibility of Chicago - he says the plan was for Leslie to bring the office to Pawnee, but then they had to rethink things with the renewal for season seven.

I dunno. Was all set to post about how are we really sure, but then I went back to double-check, and I'm pretty sure it's the same set.
posted by kafziel at 11:05 PM on April 26


Oh yeah. There's no doubt that they're still in Pawnee. Pawnee is the second most important character on the show, plus that whole side plot about Ron fixing up the third floor would be superfluous.
posted by Skwirl at 12:16 AM on April 27


The best bit for me was when I was trying to figure out why the one band at the unity concert was all wearing vaguely familiar red sweaters and then they all threw chairs across the stage and I got it. "Bobby Knight Rangers!" Glad to know that that BA from Indiana University at least still qualifies me to get old Indiana jokes on mainstream sitcoms.
posted by Skwirl at 12:22 AM on April 27 [1 favorite]


This episode also made me feel old and musically out of touch because I only recognized one band from the concert (two if you count MouseRat).
posted by rocket88 at 7:22 AM on April 28


Also, with all the shark-jump-accusers from that other thread please step forward for a plate of crow?

Oh hey. You guys were right, it was a terrific episode (omg "Pony" and the hologram - I died), although I would have been totally satisfied if it were the series finale. Also, I feel really terrible for all those poor people who had to move from Chicago to Pawnee.
posted by naoko at 8:41 AM on April 28


I still love the show, and I appreciate good episodes and good bits when they come through, but I still think they jumped the shark awhile back.
posted by bleep at 6:18 PM on April 28


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