Parks and Recreation: “Gryzzlbox” Season 7 Episode 5 Review

Photo Credit:

In the most “futuristic” episode yet, Gryzzl is sending gifts to Pawnee residents by way of drone to drum up support for them to get the Newport land. It’s up to Leslie and Ben to figure out if they are using illegal methods to send these gifts.

Immediately after receiving the gift, Leslie holds a public forum to gain support for her side of the campaign from the town. For once, it looks like Pawnee might be siding with Leslie Knope. Donna has officially switched from the Gryzzl side to the National Parks side, and, for a plethora of typically cockamamie reasons, so did the residents of Pawnee.

Now it’s time to try and sway Ron. He and Leslie may have made amends in the previous episode, but that didn’t change where he works. While no longer vehemently against Leslie’s plans, Ron can’t do anything to stop Gryzzl simply because he doesn’t believe they’ve done anything illegal.

Upon further investigation, the company hasn’t done anything against the law, but they did do something unsavory: update an important aspect of a form Ben signed on December 18, 2015, the day Star Wars: The Force Awakens opened in theaters, putting his mind elsewhere. Pointing this out on Perd Hapley’s new show, The Perdple’s Court, the people of Pawnee can see how shady Gryzzl is playing the game. This public humiliation may be enough to swing the vote.

But Ben expresses to Leslie that it’s still not enough. That’s when Ron shows up at their door holding a broken drone and a gun, claiming Gryzzl somehow found out information about his four-year-old son and that they have to be stopped.

This whole main plot was solid enough, starting to unite the Parks Department against a common enemy. But there’s still something missing from this whole conflict. The stakes just don’t feel high enough.

Elsewhere in Pawnee, Andy and April separately fight for their respective dreams. Tom and Andy fight for control of the rights to Andy’s Johnny Karate character, while April sees herself in an intern and tells her to quit and find another path. April’s arc this season is shaping up nicely and Andy is always just a joy to watch, so these were two fun side plots.

But as we head into the middle of this final season, Parks and Rec. just doesn’t feel as important anymore. Maybe it’s because we know Leslie will get her way by the end. The only thing unpredictable about this season so far is where April’s career is going to go. That said, this season is significantly higher in laughs that last year, so things are still on the up. But I hope the story finds a firmer leg to stand on before it’s too late. Grade: B

Other Notes from the Pawnee Newsletter:

– This episode’s best future joke: Nicki Minaj throwing shade at Jesse Eisenberg at the BAFTAs.

– “Is Star Wars the one with the wizard boy?” Oh, the money I’d pay to watch The Force Awakens with the cast of Parks and Rec. acting in character.

– Perd Hapley stars in a People’s Court parody that continually, and hilariously, keeps reminding us that Perd is actually not a judge.

– Lucy is back and officially single. Wonder where this is going.


By Matt Dougherty

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *