Tag Archives: Lucy Lawless

parks and recreation recapping: how a bill becomes a law

Previously on Parks and Recreation: Soda Tax 

Oh, Parks and Recreation. You are beginning to worry me. I have decided that many,  many small factors need to happen to make a perfect Parks and Rec episode. And before you begin saying, “Well, perfect is impossible,” we have all seen it happen before. Just last season there were three “perfect” episodes I can name right off the bat: “Soulmates,” “Treat Yo Self,” and “The Treaty.”

Some of the things that help comprise this perfect episode are as follows: an overall arching plot arc (last season it was Leslie running for office), a smaller episodal arc (for “Treat Yo Self” it was celebrating Treat Yo Self and cheering up Ben), and giving the minor characters a larger role (in “Soulmates” it was Chris and Ron’s cook-off).

This episode lacked my overall season plot — but that’s one of this season’s problems. There’s no real overarching plot for this season. We shall see what it becomes — and I am hoping that they come up with one soon! The best part of this episode was definitely my minor character interaction, thanks in part to Andy and Ron, and Ben and April.

The Plot 

Leslie wants to pass a “Fun in the Sun” bill that will keep their public pools open longer, benefiting the Pawnee Porpoises swim team. Chris starts a 3-1-1 phone line where the Parks and Rec department forwards calls to the correct place. Ron and Andy go fix a pot hole. Ben and April go on a roadtrip to Pawnee.

Plot Holes, Discrepancies, and Things I Just Don’t Like 

  • As funny as the Ron and Andy section was, I don’t like the idea of stoic, unbending Ron getting a pretty princess make-over for a woman. Especially for a woman he’s known for all of two hours, Diane (played by Lucy Lawless, yes, XENA). It doesn’t seem to fit his character.
  • Other things didn’t seem right: Tom jumping into the pool. I’m not saying it wasn’t a nice twist — and maybe it shows how much he wants to support Leslie — but it also seems very out of character, considering how much Tom loves his clothes.
  • Who would get a perm an hour before a huge meeting? Bad idea. Bad, bad, horrible idea.
  • Leslie’s role was largely being more awkward than usual, and saying horribly cheesy jokes. “A city councilor with porpoise” being the worst one of them all.

Quotes: 

April: Hey, are you busy? And writing Star Trek fan fiction does not count.

Ben: Ha ha ha. I… finished it last week. What’s going on?

April: I miss Andy. And you probably miss your lover, Chris.

Ben: Leslie.

***

Ben: I’m excited to bond a little with April. She’s like the little sister I never had. Because the little sister I do have
is normal and not terrifying.

April: [mouths “I will kill you” in the background while pretending to slit her throat]

***

Councilman Milton: You too, my strange, foreign friend.

Tom: No, thank you.

Leslie: Tom, eat some.

Tom: I’m not eating racist salad.

Leslie: The more we eat, the faster we talk.

Tom: You can really taste the ignorance.

Councilman Milton: It’s pronounced “anchovies.”

***

Leslie: Councilman, you have grandchildren…

Councilman Milton: And seven great-grandkids. Tim, Mary, Jack, uh, Tim, Marie, Tim, and Mary.

Tom: Don’t forget about Tim.

Councilman Milton: Right, Tim. How many is that?

***

Ben: [reading his Star Trek fan fiction aloud to April]  “Data had never felt this way before. Of course, data had never felt anything before. But Captain Picard couldn’t help but note the smile that crept over his mechanical but lifelike face.

April:  I’m gonna murder you.

Ben: I understand. Just one second. “As they walked down the hall
into the bridge…”

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spart-ocalypse now

The Starz network struck television gold when the hit-series Spartacus: Blood and Sand debuted in January 2010. The cast included Lucy Lawless (Xena: Warrior Princess), John Hanna (The Mummy Series), Peter Mensah (300) and claiming the title role was, relative newcomer, Andy Whitfield. I had my doubts initially. I had no idea who the new guy was and it seemed as though it was going to be an over-the-top “300” knockoff. Then I watched it…and OMJesus!!!

I mean look at this man (the picture). With that ruffled leather sleeve, excellent opposite nipple coverage, and what appears to be a gladiator’s championship belt. Would you not follow him into suicide mission? Even though the bulk of the show deals with men fighting for their lives and freedom in arenas, back alleys, and the grotesque “mines” viewers are made aware that the ragtag cast can actually act too. Andy gave us every side of the man that Spartacus was made from: The dishonored soldier, loving husband, hesitant slave, ruthless gladiator, and charismatic rebel. I love a good ol’ fashioned bloody melee massacre as much as the next guy but the storyline kept me just as entertained – throw in a couple gems like “Now, pull head from ass and use it for once.” , and an outrageous amount of references to Jupiter’s baby-maker and I’m sold.

Then everything changed. The first season had wrapped and production on the next season was supposed to begin until Andy Whitfield was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Production on a prequel season (Spartacus: Gods of The Arena) began to show how the famed “House of Batiatus” gained prestige – or as I like to say “Giving Andy enough time to go through and recover from treatment”. But in the end the cancer wasn’t as easily tamed as I, and countless other fans, had hoped. The search began for another lead actor to portray the role the Andy had so intricately created before us. Then, late last year fans were informed that Liam McIntyre had been cast to replace Andy Whitfield.

I have never been a fan of switching the actor/actress of a main character during the run of a television show. I won’t even begin to describe the confusion turned outrage I felt when Vivian was recast on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”. At least have the decency to tell me it’s raining when I’m being pis… I just won’t. Liam has a huge mountain to climb in winning over the fan base, not to mention becoming the leader of such an epic slave rebellion (Sorry Amistad?) in stride. Liam himself has said that “it’s a role you wish was never there, especially as a fan.”

Ultimately, I’m not going to miss an episode of Spartacus. Ever. But even in season 5 of Spartacus – that may be a stretch given history and all – I’ll still be thinking “What Would Andy Do?”

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