I’m not going to sit here and claim to be an expert on comedy, but I do know this much: centaurs are never not funny. Fifty percent person, fifty percent horse, and one hundred percent hysterical. So when you have an episode of Parks and Rec built around a painting of Leslie as a centaur, complete with pixelated boobs, you have the makings of a very funny episode of maybe the most consistently funny show currently on television.
Look, I get that the episode was meant to have thematic underpinnings of female empowerment, as the painting inspired Leslie to snap out of funk from being unable to pursue her crush on Ben. But I don’t watch this show to get commentary on small town politics (really Slate? miss the entire freaking point much?) or incisive examinations of women’s lib; I watch this show to see Aubrey Plaza eating turkey chili out of a frisbee.
The whole B-story with April and Andy being totally non-functional adults gave us so many side-splitting moments (storing the bills in the freezer, the quick cut from Ben trying to show them how to balance a checkbook, to him showing them how to open a checking account) and was the best use of Adam Scott as Ben’s dry, dead-pan humor that the show has done so far. April’s list of rules (“no music after breakfast”, “you have to wear mascara if you watch sad movies”) was so absurd, and made all the better by Ben’s reaction shots. I like that they were able to build a story around the three of them as odd-couple roommates without taking it to a place where Ben was a pill or Andy and April became unbelievably absurd.
Not a ton of Ron Swanson this week, outside of his awesome introductory speech at the art show (“Please do not misinterpret the fact that I am talking right now as genuine interest in art, and attempt to discuss it with me further, end of speech”). You know its a great episode of Parks and Rec when it manages to be this funny without using its best weapon extensively.
Back to the titular artist and painting, this show has had a long running joke about Jerry’s many amazing skills that no one notices or appreciates, and they went to that well several times last night. It was nice to see Jerry get a tiny modicum of respect and appreciation, if only for a little bit, and even then Tom managed to find fault in the lack of Centaur-Tom’s endowedness.
Anyway, all around great episode, and a perfect example of why I look forward to this show so much every week.