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8 “P-Plus” Moments from Parks and Rec “Lucky”

Photo Credit: Dean Hendler/NBC

Nick Offerman‘s first turn as a Parks and Rec writer can be considered a success. I don’t care how impossible it is to achieve, he even deserves a “P-Plus” for being the man behind “Lucky.” It’s funny and features some great scenes and hilarious dialogue that let the entire cast shine. Some of my favorite moments:

  • Leslie’s fashion show. Leslie’s looking for an outfit to wear to her upcoming TV appearance, which means she gets to put on an impromptu fashion show for Ben, Ann and Tom. The best part is when she comes out in Sandy’s “tell me about it stud” outfit from Grease. Of course, then she turns around and the word “nympho” is written on her butt. Is it bad that I kind of wish she had worn that skin-tight number to the interview with the bitter Buddy Wood?
  • Andy passes his Women’s Studies final. Andy’s so child-like, isn’t he? It’s time for him to get a pass or fail grade on the class he’s been taking all semester. It’s an oral exam — it’s just him and the hot professor. Andy’s able to spit out the info he worked hard to memorize. But when the teacher (Linda) wants him to be conversational in showing her his knowledge, he of course, can’t do it. But, somehow, he does well enough to pass. Chris Pratt has such great timing. The best line is when he says he’s a college graduate. His wife corrects him so, instead, he admits to being a “college…course graduate.”
  • Donna watches Jerry stuff envelopes. It’s like she’s observing an animal in his natural habitat. Or staring at a 24-hour loop of puppies playing on TV. Donna can’t believe Jerry has no problem stuffing envelope after envelope with Leslie’s campaign flyers. The guy’s on auto-pilot. He never seems to get tired. He never complains about doing such a menial task. It’s like all he has to do is empty his brain of everything. And you know what? Not having to think seems to soothe him — he relishes that feeling. Personally, I don’t know how Jerry does it. But I love Donna being in awe of the whole thing. I don’t know if “awe” is the right word for it. She doesn’t know how to explain this robotic behavior. She just can’t tear her eyes away.
  • Ron Swanson orders three Porterhouse steaks. After Andy passes his exam, the group that includes Ron, April and the professor go out to dinner. The waitress comes over and asks if they want to hear the specials. Ron just cuts to the quick and orders a “Porterhouse. Rare. Quickly.” A little later, he’s ordering his third steak. The man has a constant love affair with meat and I love him for it. That Ron Swanson, he’s such a different breed of man, you can see why Andy’s teacher went home with him instead of Chris. Speaking of which…
  • April tries to play matchmaker with Chris and the professor. It’s great how occasionally we see April really does have a heart. It’s buried deep, deep, deep undercover, but it’s there. In “Lucky,” she shows empathy for Chris’ current situation.” She doesn’t let him sit alone at the counter reading a book called “Limb-itless” for too long. She invites him over for to her table for dinner. Chris takes her up on her offer and thinks he hits it off with Linda. When he asks her out, she lets him down easy, saying she just came out of a relationship. She’s not ready for anything right now. Once Chris leaves, she immediately makes the moves on Ron. I really love that Offerman wrote his character having the hot hook-up and not the guy that’s played by Rob Lowe. So awesome. And, right now, it totally makes complete sense. Chris is on his way to hitting a low point in his life.
  • A giddy Ron, the morning after he’s hot for teacher. At work, Ron comes in wearing a bright red shirt. He’s giggling. Scratch that. He’s positively giddy after getting lucky the night before. It’s an amazing sight to behold. He’s carrying a box of doughnuts, which he promptly gives to April and Andy: “Doughnuts. Go nuts!” Andy and April play Ron’s conscience for a second. They tell him he has to fill in Chris on what’s happened, especially after Traeger lets them know he’s going to ask Linda out again. Ron doesn’t want to do it but Andy steps up and throws words he said earlier in the episode, back in his face: Andy: “Uh, you know Ron, someone once told me that this is not how grown-ups deal with tough situations. We face them — head on. Oh, my God, Ron. It was you that told me that. That’s crazy!” Go Andy.
  • Chris hugs Ron. Ron does end up going to Chris and lets him know he had consensual relations with Linda. Poor Chris. He’s spiraling fast. This downward slide is worse than Ann’s after Chris broke up with her. Much worse. When is it going to stop? Traeger’s literally the most pathetic man in Pawnee right now as he hugs Ron Swanson and says: “I’m quite lonely.”
  • Leslie gets help from some Pawnee airport personnel. I love everything that went down with a drunk (or is it “druck”) Leslie; “boring Ben” and the douche of a television personality — Buddy Wood (guest star Sean Hayes). After a disaster of a TV interview with Wood (Leslie was seriously inebriated), one of the airport workers helps the City Council candidate out and absconds with the damning tape that could have ruined her chances to get elected. A ride in a hot tub limo proves pointless after Wood confesses he doesn’t have the tape anymore — the Pawnee airport baggage handlers “lost” his luggage. Buddy has such a disdain for Pawnee and everything that it stands for; I’m so happy Leslie prevails — and her luck holds out.

Parks and Recreation goes on hiatus until April 19 but until then read up on the show’s recent panel at PaleyFest 2012.

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