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Parks and Recreation 4/9/09 "Pilot" Episode Recap

April 10th, 2009 · No Comments

The episode opens with Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler), a mid-level bureaucrat with six years of experience in the Parks and Recreation Department in the town of Pawnee, Indiana, discussing with a documentary crew her strong belief in the power of government to help other people. Later, Leslie hosts a community outreach public forum at an elementary school along with her jaded colleague Tom Haverford (Aziz Ansari). Leslie is enthusiastic despite the low turnout and angry complaints, which she describes as “people caring loudly at me”.

Local nurse Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones) complains about a giant pit near her house, which was dug out by a condominium developer that went bankrupt in the middle of the construction project. Ann says her boyfriend broke both his legs after falling into the pit, and she demands something be done about it. Leslie is inspired by the challenge and vows that she will fill in the pit and build a park on the land.

Leslie seeks advice from colleague Mark Brendanawicz (Paul Schneider), who feels the project would prove practically impossible due to the logistics and bureaucratic red tape, but Leslie’s enthusiasm is undeterred.[3][4] Leslie later fondly tells the documentary crew that she and Mark made love five years ago, but Mark only vaguely recalls the encounter.[5][6] Leslie, Tom and the uninterested intern April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza) visit Ann and meet Ann’s boyfriend Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt), a lazy and demanding musician who she is forced to wait on and support financially.[1] Afterward, Leslie and Ann visit the pit, which Leslie accidentally falls into as Tom and April make fun of her.

Some time later, Leslie asks her boss Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) for permission to form an exploratory committee for the pit project. Ron initially refuses, but eventually agrees to consider it so that Leslie will leave his office. Ron explains that he does not want the Parks Department to build any parks because he believes government is a waste of money, and that all government should be privatized and run by corporations for profit. Leslie repeatedly pesters Ron about the park project, but he refuses to commit.

Meanwhile, Tom and April continue to make fun of Leslie, much to the displeasure of Mark. Mark, who tells the documentary crew he is impressed that Leslie has somehow maintained her optimism about government for six years, secretly asks Ron to give her the park project. Mark said doing so would return a favor Ron owes him for unspecified reasons. Leslie and Ann are extremely excited about the new exploratory subcommittee, and despite her skepticism about politics and government, Ann pledges to do whatever it takes to help get the pit filled in, “even if it takes two months”.

“Pilot” is the first episode of the first season of the American comedy television series Parks and Recreation. It originally aired on NBC in the United States on April 9, 2009.

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Tags: Parks and Recreation