I just watched Season 2 of Parks and Recreation in 3 evenings. It is my new favourite show.
A couple years ago, before the concept of the show was really defined, there were rumours that it to be an Office spinoff, which terrified me. Please, do not ruin my favourite shows with lame spinoffs. So I was really happy to hear that it had gone from "Untitled Office Spinoff" to "Untitled Amy Poehler project" to a similar concept to The Office in terms of being mockumentary-style revolving around a group of people who work together, but this time in the parks department of a small city in Indiana.
The concept sounded really promising and I watched the 6-episode first season but decided not to continue watching into season 2. It was okay, relatively funny and had promise, but there was nothing really calling me back. It wasn't as funny as The Office or 30 Rock so I just stuck with those two Thursday night standards and left it at that.
Recently though I read somewhere that it had improved immensely from season 1 to season 2 so I gave it another chance. I'm so glad I did!
It's been a while since I saw the first season but I remember Amy Poehler's character being sort of a female Michael Scott, but more unlikeable. She was basically incompetent and not respected by the people who worked for her. In season 2 though her character developed into someone much more likeable and ridiculously good at her job. She's still extremely quirky, but it's no longer unrealistic that she would have friends or be able to have the job she does. The rest of the characters have also become equally awesome.
What I really liked about season two was feeling emotion for the characters. Not quite in the same sense as how I've teared up for some of the more important Jim and Pam moments on The Office, but still more than I've felt for sitcom characters in a while. I still love The Office but P&R was better this season at making me feel something for its characters.
Also, I LOVE LOVE LOVE shows with consistency and running gags, especially when those running gags aren't explained in a flashback or something - it feels like an inside joke for fans of the show. P&R introduced a lot of hilarious ones in season 2. If you give the show a try, remember these words: Duke Silver. You will pee your pants.
I was really sad to find out that it's not coming back until January as a mid-season replacement for something NBC inevitably cancels. NBC, it scares me a lot that so many of my favourite shows are in your hands because you suck at making smart decisions with your programming. I miss it already and just finished it last night. Dare I say... I might miss it more than The Office and 30 Rock? It's really that good you guys. I promise.