'Parks and Recreation' Recap & Review: Ron Swanson and Leslie Knope Square Off Then Eat Breakfast Food
As Parks and Recreation enters its final few episodes, the show is promising to send everyone from the Pawnee world off in style. And yes, that means everyone. The Reasonablists, the town cult, make an appearance along with the tattoo guy and the custodian hung up on Shania Twain. But tonight's double header was all about Ron Swanson and Leslie Knope.
"So help me God I will make a mountain out of this molehill," Leslie says mid episode. It's a statement that sums up her character perfectly.
She's trying to find something to do with a new plot of land that Ron is also pursuing for an independent building job. Leslie is banking on giving it historical landmark status since William Henry Harris, the ninth president of the United States who served for a month, may have lived on the land. The William Henry Harrison Museum proves to be less than stellar, like other things that were popular for 30 days including the Harlem Shake and that 6-year-old in a hot air balloon (all displayed proudly in the museum).
Ron and Co. counter by trying to get their own spokesperson. The local celebrity list includes fan favorites like Derry Murbles, Crazy Ira & The Douche, Perd Hapley, Pistol Pete, Dennis Feinstein and the Lil' Sebastian Look Alike. They go with Annabel Porter, head of the lifestyle website, BLOOSH, who tried to make Ron's homemade chairs chic. Ron was not onboard and frankly, neither was I. We want Perd!
Donna and Tom try to put Ron in check after he tries to ambush Leslie's special press conference about preserving the land. Leslie's pushing the uncomplicated past and Ron's pushing the sexy future. "All flash and no substance," as Leslie puts it.
The two square off at the end of the ep, tearing each other down by hurling petty insults at one another. Leslie doesn't like Ron's mustache. Ron doesn't enjoy her stubborn nature, and then he goes where no man should ever go. "You're not that good at scrapbooking." Low blow, and Leslie takes it as such. The feud reaches "Biggie-Tupac" level, as Tom puts it.
The gang comes to the rescue for the second episode, "Leslie & Ron." They lock the pair in the parks office to work out their differences. Now, we finally get to see what happened with Ron and Leslie over the time jump. Leslie has to try and get Ron to talk about his feelings. She employs the brutal tactic of performing Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire" with the wrong lyrics. It works like a charm
This is where we, as viewers, want to be. The Ron-Leslie relationship has been a driving force for the show since the beginning and that's to say Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman have been the best in their roles.
Here's what happened -- Leslie got the federal parks job, she hired April and eventually took everyone from the old department. Then came MorningStar. Ron was contracted to build housing next to Pawnee Commons, the pit-turned-park that symbolizes Ann and Leslie's friendship. But Ron says there's more to the story, which we believe because despite his tough exterior, he's an old softy.
After Leslie cleaned out the parks department, Ron came to her for a job with the federal government, but she stood him up for their planned meeting. When they finally get on the same page, they restore the old office back to its former glory and sing some Billy Joel together. That's what 12 hours of quarantine will get you.
When it's all said and done, Ron and Leslie have the meeting they missed three years ago with one of the show's most important characters -- breakfast food.
LESLIE'S BEST QUOTES:
"I love it when you talk point of sale docs. It turns me on." - to Ben
"No, no, no you have to tell me because you legally bound yourself to me in marriage...sucker." - to Ben.
"I always thought we had very similar jawlines." - comparing herself to George Washington.
"I'll just tell them that I apologized for heroically caring too much and you admitted you're a stubborn butthead and everything's fine now." - to Ron.
"My mind is a steel trap for friendship nuggets." - to Ron