How Parks and Rec Earned its Goodbye, Part 1: I Love You and I Like You

Last night was the series finale of Parks and Recreation.

I sobbed.

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.

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2015 Oscar Predictions

Oscars logoI love the Oscars, petty and political and only vaguely meritocratic though they are. Part of the reason I created this blog when I did was because I wanted to write a piece on my Oscar predictions. Just got that one in under the gun.

Also, I’ve plugged my predictions into ABC’s official Oscar predictions game, so if we’re Facebook friends, you can put in yours, turn on “Play With Friends,” and we’ll compare results in real time during the broadcast. Come on, it’ll be fun!

Okay, on to the predictions:

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Hello world! (Or: Are personal websites even still a thing?)

Baylor Johnson

Baylor Johnson, website-haver.

Hello, everyone!

Welcome to my new website. Those of you who know me know that I love to write and have had a blog off and on since the days of Xanga and LiveJournal, and this is the most recent, hopefully slightly less mortifying, version of that. Those of you who don’t, I’m a 28 year old communications manager originally from Texas, currently living in Miami. I’ve written an about page if you want to know a little more.

I plan to use this website to share the kinds of things that excite me.

What excites me? Well, I’m a storytelling geek. That means I get excited about the whys and hows of good storytelling in the many forms it takes in the 21st century, whether that be a movie, a novel, a podcast, a political campaign, or a video game.

I’m also a writer, and although I love that my career gives me an opportunity to channel that into work that I am extremely proud of, I’m starting to get back into writing for pleasure.

So, expect an eclectic mix of content here: movie reviews, scene analyses, various Top 10 lists, and even the odd bit of fiction. The through line for most of it, though, is going to be me exploring how good stories are told well.

Thanks for visiting!