This is a good-hearted but often hysterical situation comedy that it took me entirely too long to watch. I’m not sure exactly why but I guess I was at least slightly aware that it was a little bit wholesome and I’m pretty sure I wasn’t into wholesome in, like, 2011. Anyway…
I heard so much about this show’s “disastrous” first season that I must say I was expecting something entirely different when I watched it. It’s nowhere near as bad as I was led to believe, though it obviously different in tone that what came later.
I was pleasantly surprised about how funny this show is, some times. (Much of the time.) There are some moments in the show that had me cackling uncontrollably. Many of those moments that had me laughing the hardest featured a certain someone:
One of the strength’s of the show is the ridiculous supporting cast, who who sometimes get the B or C story in an episode and are too ridiculous for a successful narrative show, but who add extra levity, especially when the show gets a little more serious or corny. (And this show can get a little corny.)
There are some real clunkers, probably an episode or two a season. But it took us long enough to watch it that I don’t remember most of them. I remember really struggling with the first episode of the 7th seasons, for example (possibly the first two).
By biggest problem is how everyone’s occupation just got really fuzzy part way through the show. Is Anne a nurse while she works at Parks? How many of these people have two or more jobs? Do any of them ever have any free time? These are silly things to worry about – especially in the sitcom genre, where occupations are traditionally just suggestions- but I did feel like it reached heights of absurdity, especially once Leslie ran for City Council.
But I mostly quite enjoyed it and appreciated it’s ability to balance laugh-out-lough moments with what feels like actual love for its characters as (somewhat) believable real people.
PS Oh yeah, every time they leave Pawnee for the rest of “Indiana” it always looks suspiciously like California.