Parks and Recreation

The Top 3 Funniest Moments in Parks and Recreation

The sweet combination of laughs and a little bit of heart, NBC’s Parks and Recreation is one of the most original and unique comedies to air on television in the last few years.

Starring gung-ho Leslie Knope and her equally quirky co-workers in the Pawnee, Indiana Parks and Recreation Department, the show follows each of the characters through their own unique struggles and stories, from the very beginning with Anne and Andy’s troubles with the Pit to the running of Leslie’s political campaign.

And with personalities unique to each character and situation, it makes for more than a few great moments of comedy. From Ron Swanson’s epic quotes on government and being a man to Tom Haverford’s attempts to realize his true calling as a playboy, there’s more than a few jokes fans can cling to during the show’s air season.

Being big fans of the show ourselves, we decided to take on the impossible and declare our personal top 3 funniest moments in the show’s history. What are yours? Share them with us in the comments and in the forums!

RON (Hoffecker, not Swanson)

#3: Ron Swanson’s New Year’s Eve drunken binge

This was amazing to watch. We’ve seen Ron do some stupid stuff from time to time but this just takes the cake. Why? Because it’s Ron having fun and not having a care in the world. It also led to this lovely website which is hard to shut off after viewing:

I could watch that all day.

#2: Every time Jerry gets dissed

Poor Jerry. And yes, I realize even mentioning Jerry is going against the Parks & Rec ways but I have to acknowledge these moments because they are normally so funny. Jerry gets blamed for everything, never invited out, given all the dirty jobs, and never gets credit for anything. And it’s hilarious.

Best part? When Nick Offerman did his AmA on reddit, he was asked to say something about every cast member. He didn’t even mention Jerry. The first comment was: “poor Jerry”. This is classic stuff every episode.

#1: Leslie winning the City Council seat

This felt like a triumph for every fan. To be honest, the show skirts the edge of happy-go-lucky to “wow, didn’t see that coming” so I had no idea if Leslie was going to win or not. When she did, I felt like the entire season was justified for that one moment.

Every character’s hard work and bonding over this last season was just amazing. I felt like we got a lot more out of April and Ben’s evolution since joining the show has been fantastic.

To be honest, picking three of the best moments from Parks and Rec is about as easy as picking my favorite ice cream or Chicago deep dish pizza topping. It can’t be done; there’s simply too many good things to choose from. I mean, who could forget the competition held between Chris and Ron to see who could make the more delicious burger? The Ron Swanson pyramid of greatness? The walk out to the campaign speech as everyone is slipping around on ice? Lil’ Sebastion and the Harvest Festival? Duke Silver making audible love to your ears? Snake Juice?

So, after using up an entire #2 pencil writing down my favorite moments and crossing everything off the list, here are my top 3 favorite moments (tied with about 500 others):

#3 Flu Season

Yes, the entire episode. Because the entire episode was amazing through and through. There were so many amazing quotes in this episode, from Chris’ constant “my body is a microchip” claims to Leslie’s incoherent sick ramblings (“The floor and the wall just switched,” and “Why is half of your face all swirly?”). But really, what made the episode so great is its use of developing characters and weaving good storytelling with constant illness-related gags. In this episode, we not only saw April and Andy’s relationship develop, but we also noted Anne’s insecurity around Chris, saw Leslie’s determination and spirit to make the Harvest Festival work, and caught a glimpse of Ben’s care for Leslie. Overall, an amazing episode, and one of the highlights of the series.

#2 Treat Yo Self 2011

I’d trade anything to work in the same office as Tom and Donna. Tom’s got the annoying, yet adorable wannabe vibe, while Donna keeps it real in a way I wish I could emulate. Put them together, and you’ve created a dynamic duo I can’t resist seeing in the show.

When Tom and Donna unearthed their plans for “Treat Yo Self 2011”-a day dedicated solely to “treating” one’s self to anything they want- it quickly became one of the funniest moments in the series for me. And everything came to a head when Ben tagged along with Donna and Tom to the mall, where we got to see Batman cry for the first (and only) time ever. Amazing.


#1 The Penguin Marriage

This is my favorite moment from Parks and Recreation because it’s the first episode I ever watched of the show. In order to commemorate the opening of the Pawnee Zoo, Leslie decides to marry the zoo’s two penguins in a lavish mock ceremony. When it’s revealed that both the penguins are male, the story gets blown out of proportion in classic Parks and Rec style, and Leslie ends up becoming something of a patron saint for the gay community of Pawnee. It was the clever writing and quirky feel of the show that had me instantly hooked, and it’s been frequently re-visited on my DVR and Netflix queue ever since.

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