Series debut: Parks and Recreation

Series name
Parks and Recreation

Debuts
Thursday, April 9, 8:30 p.m. ET on NBC and Citytv

Regularly airs
Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. ET on NBC and Citytv

Premise
The Office-style workplace faux doc that follows a civic employee whose small world cannot kill her grand ambitions, whether it’s to turn an abandoned construction site into a beautiful green space or to become the first women president of the United States.

Primary cast and crew
Amy Poehler (SNL, Baby Mama) is Leslie Knope, the bureaucrat with the big dreams and awkward social skills.

Aziz Ansari (Scrubs, Flight on the Conchords) is Tom Haverford, her underling. He’s looking out for No. 1.

Rashida Jones (The Office, I Love You Man) is nurse Ann Perkins.

Nick Offerman (Deadwood, 24) is Ron Swanson, the boss. He has no ambition. Plenty of cynicism, though.

Aubrey Plaza (upcoming film Funny People with Ansari) is April Ludgate, the intern. Beyond no ambition.

Paul Schneider (Lars and the Real Girl) is Mark Brendanawicz, city planner. His arched eyebrow gets second billing, but only just.

Greg Daniels (King of the Hill) and Michael Schur (The Office, SNL, The Comeback) are creator/exec producers

Trailer

But what do I know anyway? After NOT having seen the pilot I predict…
Can anything survive the expectations that new mom Poehler has been saddled with here? She is plenty talented of course — her ultra pregnant self rapping as Hillary Clinton on SNL was possibly the best moment of TV in the last year — but hype like this is deadly. And tedious. Try to forget and just watch it like any other Office-like faux documentary. Wait. Forget that heap of expectations too. Just watch.

Other reviews
Robert Lloyd of the L.A. Times mentions early worrisome focus group reviews, but says that “Like The Office, it does its work quietly — too quietly for some, I’m sure…”

And here’s a selection of reviews, from fansite knopeknows.com, that runs from loved it (13) to hated it (11).

Official website
Assorted video, wallpaper and icons (under Exclusives) and character bios, but the Games tab reads “Still to come” as of this April 9 writing.

Wondering when the other new series and returning series are kicking off?
Click here for the complete and updated list of mid-season premieres and other important dates. Who am I to tell you what to do, but you could consider bookmarking it…

— Denise Duguay

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