Just like so many politicians, the run of “Parks and Recreation” is coming to an end. The NBC comedy will wrap up Tuesday, Feb. 24, with a one-hour episode that will put an exclamation mark on the show that’s been part of the network lineup since 2009.
In the finale, the Parks gang must complete one last task together before saying goodbye. The show followed the political intrigue of the City of Pawnee.
Stars Amy Poehler, Jim O’Heir, Chris Pratt and Retta and series creator and executive producer Mike Schur share their thoughts about the end of the show.
• Poehler on one of the best parts of the show: “One of the things that’s really great is that we have a lot of really young fans. I can’t tell you how many people have 15-, 16-year-old kids who watch it with them. I think that’s really great to have a show you both find funny. I imagine when you have a 15- or 16-year-old child, it must be nice to find one thing that you agree on that’s funny. So there’s like a family element to the watching of the show that’s been really nice.”
• Schur on whether a show like “Parks and Recreation” could survive if it launched today: “I think that the state of network television is in flux. I think we all agree on that.
“I think if you believe that the answer to that question is no, you could ask a similar question about any ‘Seinfeld’ or ‘Cheers’ or any show from the past that you wonder, like we do this in baseball all the time. If you’re a baseball fan, you say, ‘What would happen if Babe Ruth were playing today? Could he hit modern pitching?’ There’s no way to answer it really, unless you use advanced sabermetric stats, which I do, and I can give you the answer later.”
• Pratt on the series ending: “I’ve been doing this business for 15 years, and I’m realizing the things that really matter about what you’re doing, for me at least, just the relationships you have while you’re doing it. I could have the good fortune of finding another group of people like this, but I don’t expect I ever will. This team was awesome, and the process of making this show spoke to me and was so perfect for me like the way I like to work.”
• O’Heir on his “Parks and Recreation” role: “It’s been a really fun thing I’ve gotten to play. To be honest, I think some of the other characters have gotten more protective of Jerry than I have, because I remember an instance where Chris Pratt was like, “This might be too much,” for his character to do to me. I’m like, “No. It’s awesome.”
“The reason it worked is because Jerry has the most amazing life out of all of them. He goes home to a family who adores everything that he does, crazily. He really has a lot of talent, a beautiful wife. So I think, the two worlds combined, it was awesome.”
• Retta on the growth of her character: “When we first started, I remember my manager was like ‘It’s a glorified extra. So if you don’t want to do it ’ I was like, ‘Dude, I’m not doing (expletive deleted). I might as well be on a set and learn stuff.’ It’s hard to learn about 10 people in the first five episodes. So you had to work your way down. And then I got to be Donna, so it was totally worth it.”