Tuesday, May 18, 2010
A very late review of Thursday night television
Phew, where does the time go? It seems like just yesterday, I was watching the latest episode of Parks and Recreation, and The Office. However, it was actually four days ago!
Man, as a result, this entry could be as stale as the latest plotline of The Office. (Hi oh!) I was originally hoping that Michael's foxy new interest would finally allow him to find some happiness. Except for the nice lady who moved to Vermont, Michael has dated nothing but psychopaths and nuts.
Therefore, why do we need another one in the form of a cheating bartender? Even if the actress, Amy Pietz, is easy on the eyes for being 41. (Note on Pietz: She has been in more than a dozen relevant, important dramas in the past 20 years, in guest roles, and she doesn't look at all familiar to me, which is odd.) The last two episodes have been pretty horrid, with the big "reveal" two weeks ago being that Donna is married. Uh, I kind of thought that from the beginning of the episode. This week's episode was a tiny bit better, with the portions that featured Andy trying to humanize Donna's husband.
The non-Michael portions of each episode have also been decent, specifically, Daryl trying to punk Andy, and Dwight trying to nuke his sperm to prevent Angela from getting pregnant. Reiterating my comments from previous weeks though, The Office really needs to move away from focusing every episode on Michael.
Average grade for the two episodes: C-
In contrast, this past week's Parks and Recreation was excellent. There was more development between April and Andy, and by that, I mean April got bitter about him talking and flirting a bit with Anne. This occurred during her 21st birthday party, which in typical Pawnee class fashion, was hosted at the strip club that Tom is a part-owner of.
In addition to the April-Andy drama, there are several other minor subplots going on in the episode, and all of them were appealing. Leslie is sparring with a bureaucrat from the state about their budget, and surprisingly, it's not the billed major guest star Rob Lowe. Ron is happy that the budget auditors are in town, which is why he is smiling all goofy above. Anne is boozing it up at April's birthday party over her break-up with Mark. And Tom is trying to hook-up with a bunch of different ladies, but he keeps striking out, until he gets the number of a cute bartender, Lucy, at the end of the episode. (She kind of reminds me of Hilary Swank, but it's obviously not her. Her identity remains a mystery, as even IMDB has no answers, nor does Google.)
As compared to The Office, the plot twist at the end of Parks and Recreation is actually amusing and interesting. The show's writers have taken care to develop the main ensemble of the show, ensuring that we care a bit when something happens to them. This use to be the case with The Office, but the touch seems to be lost ever since the episode when Pam and Jim got together for good.