Boxset Bucketlist: Parks and Recreation

Parks and Recreation is not a revolutionary show. It doesn’t redefine genres or expand creative possibilities in television. In fact, it was initially conceived as a spin-off of the US version of The Office.

Don’t let any of that put you off, though. It is one of the best comedies currently running in the US.
The series follows the parks and recreation department of the city of Pawnee, Indiana. Run by Ron Swanson, the Libertarian inspiration to every man in the world, and Leslie Knope, the overenthusiastic deputy director with slight feminist leanings, the office serves as a backdrop for this group of government employees.

There are obvious connections to The Office, from the documentary-style filming to the lack of a soundtrack, but its originality lies in its tone and its wealth of characters.

Consequently, what makes the show great is not the plot, which, while funny, isn’t necessarily very new; it’s the character arcs that develop from season two onwards.

The show successfully portrays people whom we come to love. Between the newly iconic looming figure of Ron Swanson and the gradual growth of April Ludgate and Andy Dwyer, we want to see more of them. The show explores and changes them in detail and refuses to limit them to catchphrases and single quirks. In short, they are funny, likeable, and interesting.

So, besides Ron Swanson being the greatest character in any sitcom, there are a hundred reasons to watch the show. Most importantly: it’s hilarious.