I hear tell that some viewers out there still haven’t caught completely up on the entire final season of Parks & Recreation, so if you’re one of those people, DON’T READ AHEAD unless you’re a glutton for punishment. Maybe it’s a self-preservation thing for some of you, delaying the inevitable pain you’ll feel at the loss. Whatever your reasons, I beg of thee, set aside the rest of the day and catch up on Pawnee’s goodbye. Rip off the Band-Aid and let yourself feel all of the feels. And then, once you think you’ve expelled all of your eye-water during the finale, watch this 7 minute montage of behind the scenes footage of each of the characters’ series wraps. It’s brutal, but it has to be done.
How was that? Speaking personally, I found it a little challenging to take in every moment I could without windshield-wipers for the eyes. My own personal trick for adding levity to the viewing was to picture Mose from The Office every time Mike Schur, Parks’ co-creator and showrunner, was on screen. It helps, so go back and give it a try.
If you want a less emotionally taxing stroll through memory lane with the Pawnee gang, take a gander at these:
There are plenty of more pictures on NBC’s Parks & Rec page, so if you’re looking for a bigger fix than this you can get it there. The video and gallery are both strong reminders that it’s not just hard to say goodbye to the main cast, but also the supporting characters. It’s easy to appreciate the number of ancillary characters that were given scenes in the finale, including Pawnee’s steely stenographer & clerk Ethel Beavers, The Pawnee Journal‘s persistent reporter Shauna Malwae-Tweep, and literal news anchor Perd Hapley. The rich swath of characters that Parks gave us is a gift that won’t be soon forgotten.