Parks And Recreation Watch: Season 5, Episode 21 - Swing Vote

An average episode of Parks and Rec finds its enjoyment in featuring some characters that rarely get to take the spotlight.

The lead story of the week, and the origin of the episode's title, follows Ron and Leslie as she competes for Jamm's vote on a city council measure to defund the subsidies of the local mini-golf course. I'm always up for more Jamm, but the story seems tired this late in the game for the show. Ron guilting Leslie into seeing that his way is the right way is not only not very original for the show, but it isn't at all compelling here as Ron just stands on the sidelines mostly frowning in disappointment. They did this just a few weeks ago with Jason Schwartzman and the video store and watching Offerman gleefully watch Leslie's world crumble was exceedingly more enjoyable than his dull demeanor here. Jamm is great, and they gave Chris more than a few good lines, but overall this story felt like old hat. They even missed out on a potentially great moment of Leslie realizing Jamm is comparing them as equals as this moment existed off screen. Lame.

Mouse Rat also makes a reappearance this week and they do so without Andy. Again, the story doesn't have a lot to it and doesn't get into Andy's psyche either. What happened to Andy being a secret genius? There are a couple of funny "dumb" Andy lines, and Chris Pratt is great at performing his "Swan Song", but other than that there isn't a lot here. April and Ben are the B characters in this plot but again there's nothing there for these guys to do but an excellent revelation to April's musical tastes. Still, nice to see Mouse Rat get back together in the end.

Our last story of the night sees the return of Mona Lisa who is apparently still dating Tom. Ann is enlisted by Tom to break it off with Mona Lisa and while she won't top her older brother Jean Ralphio, Jenny Slate gets a couple of good moments in there. The flip to Ann getting a Mona Lisa makeover was funny as well, even if the whole evolution of that relationship was way too quick, but ultimately we just end up with where we thought Tom was in the first place, single. "Bitch, you going to get pregnant!" might be the line of the night though.

An ok episode of Parks and Rec at least always has a few laughs and this week was no different. But, with only a one episode left I would hope that the plot would be taking us somewhere with a bit more finality. I really hope we won't be wishing they pushed the wedding episode to the finale, because next week could be it for not just the season, but the show. Plus, I can't really hold anything against them after a recent hot streak.

Random Notes:

-"First of all I am rage glowing."

-"The Hoover Dam is a travesty."

-"I'll figure it out, it already has windmills, who cares!"

-"I'm kind of a badass wild card."

-"I didn't recognize them without me because I'm the only one who matters."

-"Way to be duck."

-"You know I have irritable bowel syndrome, racist!"

-Halloween sound effects albums from the 1950's, what?

-"You sure make a guy feel like a real lady."

-"I could, literally, faint if I didn't have impeccable blood pressure."

-"Even better loss, Leslie."

-"It's the tits!"

-Threesome for Tom!

-"Ha, jokes on them, I forgot it."

-"'Twas Leslie killed the beast."

-"The Beatles!"