Parks and Recreation’s Reunion Special Is a Such a Gift

Leslie (Amy Poehler) and Ron (Nick Offerman), together again, albeit apart.
Photo: YouTube

A Parks and Recreation Special, the socially distanced, one-off reunion episode of the beloved NBC comedy, is an act of service. That’s true in the sense that it exists to raise money for Feeding America. But it’s also true because the whole episode was well-executed, heartfelt fan service.

The term “fan service” usually applies in a negative sense to moments that cater too blatantly to fan desires. The Parks and Rec reunion, in keeping with that concept, was packed with callbacks and Easter eggs designed to strike a chord with loyal viewers of the show, which ended its run in 2015 after a final season that flash-forwarded Pawnee’s finest to 2017. But all the shoutouts didn’t feel like pandering so much as gifts from the team that worked on the series and wanted to do something nice for the people who love and miss it.

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