This episode, y’all. It’s a throwaway episode in many ways, but I literally had to pause and do some deep breaths at the Hillary Clinton quote.
Plot: The parks team from Pawnee’s sister city in Venezuela visits, giving Fred Armisen the opportunity for a very funny improv (I’m guessing) scene about reasons Venezuelans might end up in jail. I do wonder if I’d be entirely comfortable with a Venezuelan sitcom doing this about the United States, though. And it’s especially awkward with a few years’ hindsight as the Venezuelans brag about their wealth, knowing how badly things are going there these days.
Your Related Link For The Day: Keep an eye on Venezuela. Collapsing neighbors are never a good thing, and just from a humanitarian perspective, this already isn’t pretty.
Ann is Mean: Minimal. She calls Mark a clever rodent, but it’s in context, and also, he is.
Jerrybashing: Also minimal. Random and context-less, but when is it not?
Donna Is Cooler Than You: This is the first episode in which we’re asked to see Donna as sexy, sexually aggressive, sexually active, and powerful. I kind of wish her character development in the show didn’t start with sexuality, but at least it is from an empowered perspective. It made me long for the episodes where she also has personality. But we’ll get there!
Somebody Get Tom Some Therapy: Dear God, Tom. Good grief. Also, writers. I keep puzzling over whether Tom is one of the deepest, best-written, most complex characters ever in a sitcom, or whether his character writing is a lazy shortcut, like conflicting actions and words mean depth. Tom is hugely offended when the Venezuelans assume he’s a servant, but happily becomes their servant for cash, but then gives away the cash when Leslie sets the example. 30 minutes just isn’t enough to flesh out the complexity they’re hinting at here.
April Is My Spirit Animal: “My mom’s Puerto Rican. That’s why I’m so lively and colorful.”
The LOL moment: Honestly, for me, it was when the Venezuelans feel they’ve won the pissing contest by donating $35k… and take the crappy ballpoint pens from the cup. People are petty and they suck and Armisen and his team pull this off perfectly.
I am Leslie: Oh yes I am. That moaning noise when she has to make a decision? The totally misplaced decision-making-induced rage at the random person she can attack? “Pro and con never works”? It me.
I want to be more like Leslie: I am going to carry this one around with me for a while. “Yesterday I was tough and direct; today I have to be charming. Basically, yesterday I was Hillary Clinton and today I am Bill.”