Last night was the series finale of Parks and Recreation.
I didn’t start watching the show when it first aired. It was already into its third season when my boyfriend Elliot first got into it and was into its fourth by the time he convinced me to sit down and really watch it with him. Since then, I’ve seen every episode*, via some combination of Netflix, Hulu, DVD and, in the last few months, reruns on the Esquire Network, some of them many times over. The show’s seventh season was the first one that I actually saw as it aired.
Watching Parks and Rec is a thing that happens a lot in our home: if there’s nothing on TV, or nothing else going on, or if it’s just been a stressful day and we want something to chill out with, Netflix is likely to get booted up and an episode of the show put on.
Parks and Recreation had the biggest heart of any show on TV, without ever being maudlin or melodramatic. Never mean or ironic or bitter, it was a show about people who liked each other working together to make their town a better place. It was also probably the best comedy on the air for most of its seven seasons.
I kind of wish I hand’t started this blog just a few days before the show ended, so that I could have had more time to write about the show while it was on the air. Condensing all of my thoughts on the show into one blog post is going to be impossible. In fact, in writing what was supposed to be a blog post on the final episode, “One Last Ride,” I realized I had written about nearly 1000 words without actually saying much about the finale. So, this post is going to be the first of a couple dealing with the end of Parks and Rec and what made it so rewarding.
Spoilers follow, for those who haven’t watched the finale yet.