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Parks and Recreation – Ann’s Decision Review: Nice Guy, Nice Sperm

We’ve seen a lot of Ann’s love life on this show -- from the early days with Andy to her relationships with Mark and Chris to her questionable fling with Tom. Is it safe to call her the Taylor Swift of Pawnee? Well, at least she doesn’t write songs about her failed romances.

During a breakfast powwow with Leslie, Ben, and Ron at JJ’s Diner, Ann makes a bold proclamation. After years of getting swept up in her boyfriends’ personalities, she has begun to date herself. That means trying new things, including ordering two dishes when she goes out to eat and skydiving. Of course, like any self-respecting millennial, she blogs about everything.

As her best friend, Leslie supports Ann wholeheartedly, until she finds out that Ann wants to be a mom. She makes a list of Ann’s qualities, namely that she’s a “unicorn nurse” and “stupid hot,” to dissuade her from her decision and wait until a guy can fill her home with multi-ethnic genius babies. But Ann Perkins waits for no man.

This plot seemingly came out of nowhere until I remembered last week’s episode where Ann was a hit with Diane’s daughters. Perhaps that stirred up her latent maternal desires. I’ll be interested to see where they take Ann’s character from here. She’s great as Leslie’s perennially unlucky-in-love friend, but Ann as a mother? I just can’t see it.

Leslie’s desire to see her best friend happy isn’t a new concept. Leslie loves her friends a lot. Perhaps a bit too much. But in her attempt to sabotage the baby train, she drives Ann right into the belly of the Douche, Pawnee’s awful morning shock-jock responsible for creating the sport of “taint ball.” I don’t even want to know what that entails.

Yet for all of Leslie’s meddling, however good-natured it is, she will always have Ann’s back. If that means having to go on the Douche’s radio show to defend Ann and get him to leave her alone by stepping into a Jell-O filled kiddie pool and saying “Rudy” in her best Bill Cosby voice, that’s what she’s going to do. They eventually reach an understanding and all is well between the friends again. Besides, can you really be mad at someone who gives you a color coded binder with a cartoon uterus? Let’s do this.

In other Pawnee happenings, April takes on the Pawnee Commons project by leading several public forums. She does her best to imitate Leslie, and her earnestness is adorable, until she’s rattled by incessant chants of “topless park.” She considers wearing a blonde wig to channel Leslie further, but in a surprisingly brilliant (and sweet) move, Andy brings the bag without the Leslie accessories to the next forum. April’s forced to be herself, and while it isn’t perfect, they scrounge up 80 signatures, along with 30 complaints of excessive rudeness. Those two kids really are meant for each other.

Finally, Ben enlists the help of Chris, Tom, and Ron to find a caterer for his wedding. After a battle with food poisoning for everyone except Tom, who, to no one’s surprise, considers himself a “foodie” and Instagrams everything on his plate instead of eating it, Ben and Leslie decide that JJ’s Diner will cater the “wedding of the millennium.” Waffles for everyone!

Notes and Quotes
- Leslie on Ann’s rash decision: “If she were dating a guy for six weeks, and they decided to have a kid, I’d be like, ‘Congratulations, Ann and Channing Tatum.’ Because that is the only scenario that would make sense to me.”

- “Savory pastry. A delicate little dough pocket filled with tomato sauce, cheese, and seasoned meat. Just a stunning culinary innovation.” Sorry, Ben. It’s literally just a mini calzone. But hey, kudos for making your commentary sound like proper Top Chef critiquing.

- The entire scene with the food poisoned trio had me in stitches, especially when Ron scampers to the phone and throws it off the desk, leading to Ben rolling on the ground and dialing furiously with his nose. Also, Chris in the fetal position on the floor saying, “I was dying earlier today. And then I died. Now I’m dead.”

- Jean-Ralphio update: He started a catering company, but he’s currently standing trial for counterfeiting Euros. And he’s definitely guilty. That guy cannot catch a break.



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