Grade: B+ (for my first Parks and Rec review!)
“Have you ever seen those National Treasure movies? Everything’s a clue” -Andy
Despite the new and unfamiliar location for much of the episode, the season premiere still delivered the right mix of awkward tension and humor.
The episode was essentially divided into two separate scenarios, one taking place in Washington D.C. and the other back in Pawnee. Now that Ben is working for a congressional campaign and took April with him as his assistant, Leslie and Andy decided to pay their significant others a visit. Having Andy travel to such a historical and monumental city was the perfect opportunity for him to display his immature and idiotic personality. The best example was when he was taking notice of the Washington monument. “Leslie, this is a really cool penis, but…”
It was nice to see Leslie and Ben reunited, though I actually preferred the much more raunchy encounter between Andy and April that led to a hysterical make-out on the floor. While Leslie and Ben spent their time together, I’m honestly not suprised that Leslie felt both insecure and jealous about her boyfriend’s success. It certainly was entertaining to watch because Leslie is such an ambitious woman. I hope the couple can make it work, but after their flirty Skype date at the end of the episode, I’m fairly confident that the distance won’t break them apart.
Back in Pawnee, Ron was in charge of hosting the employee appreciation barbeque that Leslie had always turned into a festive celebration each year. Being Ron Swanson, however, the only thing that mattered to him was the meat. I was certainly chuckling when he brought a live pig named Tom to the park with the intent to slaughter it for lunch (in front of everyone nonetheless!) I loved that he was so obsessive over his precious meat (even if it wasnt from that particular hog) and made everyone wait around hungry until it was cooked perfectly despite the fact that it was supposed to be an employee appreciation day. The scene when Ron furiously drove off in his car with the grill dragging behind was absolutely perfect.
It was also revealed at the BBQ that Anne and Tom are living together and broken up, but pretending to be happily in love to win a bet against Donna who said they wouldn’t last. I can’t wait to see how long this storyline plays out!
*Other notable moments:
~Andy filling his hands with seafood and creating “shrimp claws” at a classy political event.
~Ron feeding the workers pork when they got back to the office, which turned out to be Tom the pig.
~Andy making up completely useless and inaccurate information as a fake tour guide in D.C. and April deciding they should attempt to make money off of it.
Overall, a satisfying episode and good kick-off to what will hopefully be a hilarious season!