Parks and Recreation premiered in April 2009 on NBC. Created by Michael Schur (The Office, Brooklyn Nine-Nine) and Greg Daniels (The Office, King of the Hill), this political sitcom was named the number one television series in 2012. Only a year later it won the Television Critics Association Award for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy.
The series stars Amy Poehler as the protagonist Leslie Knope, Aziz Ansari as Tom Haverford, Leslie’s subordinate, and Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson, the Parks and Recreation director. It is set in a fictional town in Indiana. Leslie Knope, perky, mid-level bureaucrat, comes to the conclusion that her work is not beneficial enough and that she has to do something about it. She feels the need to make something useful for society and her town, but in order to do so, she has to overcome various obstacles.
Leslie’s main idea is to turn an abandoned construction site into a community park. However, the inflexible bureaucratic system makes it more difficult for her to realize this plan, together with certain developers who, all of a sudden, seem to be interested in the very same site. In spite of all these difficulties, Leslie’s determined to make it happen, as she is not the kind of a person who gives up that easily.
When it comes to viewers’ reaction, the series received universal acclaim, but it was not that well-received by critics. A great majority of them thought the sitcom was too similar to The Office, calling it just a “carbon copy” of the series. In addition to this, Parks and Recreation was also described as “predictable, slow paced, and lacking in character development.” But, we should also note that there were some positive comments, as well. For instance, New York magazine’s Will Leitch said that it was “probably the most impressive comeback in the history of broadcast comedy.”
Those of you who watched the series probably remember that Season 7 was released more than two years ago. For some time, we hoped that NBC would eventually announce the series renewal for another season, but, unfortunately, it has been confirmed that Season 8 is canceled instead.