Parks and Recreation, Season Five, Episode 6 “Ben’s Parents”
I do not know about you, but I entered tonight's episode still on a Leslie and Ben high. NBC has had some fantastic couples in my lifetime - Sam and Diane, Ross and Rachel, Jim and Pam. I never thought Leslie and Ben would get to that point, but watching two weeks ago I found a huge smile on my face when Ben dropped to one knee (but didn't Tebow). Could tonight's episode carry that wave of momentum?
Leslie has to deal with meeting Ben's divorced parents for the first time - does that actually happen? Do people get engaged without meeting their spouse's family? Leslie should have called me before meeting Ben's dad - I could have informed her that they were a Twizzler family. Red Vines, please. Ben's father and mother hate one another and Leslie has to tiptoe around them.
When does Leslie find time for all these craft projects? Also, will Joe Biden come between her and Ben? If I had a quarter for everything I asked if Biden would come between two young lovebirds...The unity quilt fails (at first), as Ben’s parents find tons of reason to be against it. I felt like this storyline was really played out and predictable. I expect better from Parks and Recreation.
Jean-Ralphio also returned tonight. I enjoy him as an occasional character, as his appearances make Tom's antics seem less mean spirited. And more idiotic, but that is the price you pay. They teamed up to pitch their new venture to the greatest man who (n)ever lived, Ron Swanson. Rent A Swag, the clothing you rent, wear, clean and return. How could it fail? It felt like Tom was growing up a bit tonight, while Jean-Ralphio was pulling him down.
Chris was there too and was his normal roller coaster of emotions. I have said before that I feel this character has outstayed his welcome and nothing changed in that area tonight. Is he just here still because he is played 'lit-really' by Rob Lowe? He opens up to the criminally underused Ann (Queen of Toilet Humor) and it ends with April and Andy throwing good and bad things at him, overloading his senses.
Zero political ads during the broadcast! Hooray! That raises the episodes letter grade at least a letter grade. I know these reviews feel empty without a letter, so let’s call it a B-. Bring on the catcalls!