The second season of Parks and Recreation is quite different from the first. The catalyst is a fundamental change in Leslie Knope: her chaotic nature and naivety has been dialled way back. She becomes an actor, not a reactor, and a character that you like as much as you admire. She doesn’t just distinguish herself from Michael Scott; she becomes one of the most interesting characters on TV, and every bit the feminist icon to viewers that the character aspires to be.
The supporting cast also begins to flourish. Nick Offerman’s deadpan, lavishly moustachioed Ron Swanson is a stand-out — watch out for the episode where Ron gets a hernia — and the show hits upon its most compelling relationship by pairing Chris Pratt’s man-child Andy with Aubrey Plaza’s sullen April. Even the weaker threads of the ensemble are tidied up, with one major character’s departure and the introduction of Rob Lowe and Adam Scott for the final two episodes. From then on, one of the funniest shows on TV is also the one with the biggest heart.
Reviewed by Joe Cunningham
Parks And Recreation: Season 2
Released: 17 June 2013
Season 2 has the same number of commentaries despite a quadrupled episode count, but makes up for that with over two-and-a-half hours of deleted scenes. Add to that a great blooper reel and a handful of extended episodes and featurettes, and you’ve got your recreational fill.