I waffle a lot about this show. Two hours worth of waffling, even. Sometimes I just want it to be funny and focus on the Parks Department without big topics, and sometimes I want more meaty storylines. And right now, while I wanted something more heavy, they gave us a nice little standalone episode with "New Slogan." It was amusing and had some great moments, but it just felt vaguely forgettable to me as it didn't really move much of the plot along. We learned about Duke Silver, saw Leslie still on the fence about the National Park Service job and Tom found a space for his latest endeavor, but after some of the big emotional upheaval of the season, this just fell flat… maybe because everyone was so spread out for the entire episode. That said, it will probably be one of the episodes that will play really well in reruns.
Leslie, Ben & the Slogan
Ben updated the Pawnee website and helped Leslie on her quest to create a new slogan for the town, but after her press tour (with a super sexy cameraman), the poll ends up getting hijacked by Crazy Ira and the Douche. She even goes on their radio show and tries to play along, but only ends up making matters worse (what with that big stick up her butt) until her adorable husband tells her to learn to delegate (playing into the big job offer and the fact that she'll be in a less hands-on role if she takes it) and Jerry/Larry ends up running a town meeting. In the end, even though the slogan is on the wrong side of the town line and ends up forcing people to drive in circles, "when you're here, then you're home." Why do I have a feeling that whole "home" concept will come back around when/if she decides to take this job? And for me, the best part (of the entire episode, even) was just seeing Leslie and Ben being flirty together. No big sweeping gestures, just cute everyday stuff. I especially like this juxtaposed against Amy Poehler's real-life beau Nick Kroll being totally disgusting as The Douche.
Andy and Duke Silver
Andy's hunting for new acts for the Unity festival, and ends up a jazz bar listening to the sweet saxophone tones of one Duke Silver… a.k.a Ron Swanson. What a man of many talents. It seemed just sort of jammed into this episode, but it was a fun subplot, as I'll watch Ron Swanson look uncomfortable around Andy any time. And I love his awesome door-shutting gadget. Can I buy that somewhere?
April, Donna and Tom
Donna put on her real estate agent hat and helped Tom find a space for the restaurant that he got funded last week, but she is purposely trying to sabotage him by showing him ridiculously expensive venues or total dumps. All the while, April, who shouldn't have time for this what with her multiple jobs, tags along and also tries to dissuade Tom from renting. Both women are afraid that Tom will leave the Parks Dept. if his business starts booming (though his Rent-A-Swag duties never seemed to interfere). There were some funny lines, but this whole storyline kind of annoyed me. Like you want your friend to fail, so that he can work a fairly dead-end job with you? They know there's this thing called hanging out, or hell, Tom would probably Skype them in. Even though they eventually realized the error of their ways, I expected more from these two confident and strong women.
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