'Parks and Recreation': I now pronounce you man and... wait, seriously?
Oh! Well… okay, then! On one level, I should have seen the events of this episode coming. After “Ron & Tammy: Part Two,” NBC ran a promo inviting viewers to check out April and Andy’s wedding registry. The next day, the network apologized, saying that it had messed up — the spot was supposed to feature the names “Ron” and “Tammy” instead of “April” and “Andy.” As it turns out, though, that mea culpa was a total red herring. Andrew Maxwell Dwyer and April Roberta (!) Ludgate did, in fact, tie the knot in tonight’s installment of Parks and Recreation. And I don’t know whether to feel elated or totally confused.
I love Andy (like, Love-love). I love April. I love the two of them together even more. I also understand that if any couple on this show were to impulsively decide to get married, it’d be these two young knuckleheads. Still, I can’t help feeling cheated because of the way the wedding went down. I wish there had been more of a buildup — remember, they only said “I love you” to each other two episodes ago — to this moment, and I also wish there had been a little more tension. Why did nobody but Leslie voice objections to their union? Don’t April’s parents care that their little Zuzu only just turned old enough to drink?
The nagging feeling that all was not right prevented me from enjoying April and Andy’s Wacky Wedding Adventure unreservedly. But since I’m not made of stone, I also found plenty to love about this plot: Tom’s desire to become the Best Man, then the Best Best Man; the fact that Andy chose to get married while wearing his beloved Reggie Wayne jersey; Jean-Ralphio’s smooth suggestion that his buddy incorporate a quote from Fred Claus into his toast; and the sweet, note-perfect ceremony itself (best touch: April’s ex-boyfriend and his gay boyfriend were the flower-men). The couple’s vows were especially nicely done. (April: “I guess I kind of hate most things. But I never really seemed to hate you. So I want to spend the rest of my life with you, is that cool?” Andy: “I vow to protect you from dangers. I don’t care if I have to fight an ultimate fighter, or a bear, or him….I would take him down. I’m getting mad right now from thinking about it!”) Oh, and the moment when April took Leslie aside and told her that she loves her — I think that made my heart grow three sizes.
The episode’s B-plot, in which Donna taught Ann how to rock a singles mixer, was also a home run. I’d love to see these characters get more storylines together — Donna’s matter-of-fact attitude makes her a great foil for an off-her-game Ann. I wonder if Jean-Ralphio stopped by Mezze after Tom no longer needed his services?
Other highlights from “April and Andy’s Fancy Party”:
-I’m incredibly glad that Ron didn’t actually pull out his own tooth in front of his department. Besides being very, very gross, I think that might also have been too over-the-top, even for a macho specimen like Swanson.
– Andy has asked Ben to bring Avatar, 50 pairs of 3D glasses, and a 3D-capable TV to the “dinner party.”
– Oh, and speaking of Ben: Obviously he was going to stay in Pawnee. He and Leslie are so destined to have tons of idealistic, socially impaired babies together. Do you think these two crazy kids will actually become a couple before the end of the season?
– The shirt Mr. Gergich wore to the party: Such a Jerry.
– At the beginning of the party, April emerges wearing a grey hoodie over her white dress. After the nuptials, her sullen sister Natalie asks the guests if anyone’s seen her grey hoodie.
– Donna, giving Ann some straight talk at the mixer: “We’re in the jungle. There are no friends here!” And later, chastising her for not knowing how to flirt: “That was the worst thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Are you Nell? From the movie Nell?”
– Another great cinematic reference came when Leslie asks A&A why they’re in such a rush to get married: “Is this like that movie, A Walk to Remember?”
– Ben, to April’s black-nailed friend Oren: “No, Oren, I do not know how I’m going to die. Wait. Are you asking me, or telling me?”
– Ron forgot about his drunken second marriage to Tammy. It’s effigy burnin’ time!
– I really wish I had caught more of the lyrics to Mouse Rat’s wedding song.
– This about sums it up: “We are in love, so we didn’t over-think it! I cannot overemphasize how little we thought about this!”
Are you in favor of Andy and April’s hasty marriage, or against it? And what was your favorite part of tonight’s episode?
Parks and Recreation