This is a guest post from Luke DeSmet, a friend of The Recorder.
In the week after Parks and Recreation aired its series finale, the emotional high faded and my focus shifted to a television landscape still littered with great comedy, including daring and original work like Broad City and Man Seeking Woman. But so far time has not afforded me any critical distance: I love this show, and feel the need to express what an unambiguously positive time I have had with it. This is a show I want to celebrate, not critique. Its impact on television comedy has been overwhelmingly positive, filling our screens with more likeable, human, and even unapologetically decent folks who still manage to be hilarious. Originally presented as The Office transposed into small town government and as a natural extension of the trend of cringe humor, Parks found its feet in its second season and transformed itself into something clear-eyed and earnest while never sacrificing its alt-comedy edge, pulling comedy back from a ledge of cynicism and irony that had become boringly routine.