Parks and Recreation Recap: “Two Parties”–The Gettysburg Undress

Elsewhere in Pawnee, the men are wonderful. All of them. Traeger, Haverford, Swanson, Dwyer, and Gergich (Jerry forced his way in there somehow) have come together to party as only our bachelor boy can: with beer and board games. Did y’all know that Ben Wyatt is nationally ranked in Settlers of Catan? Or that he’s a huge Homeland fan? Of course you did. More importantly, strippers make him sad. THIS MAN, CAN I HUG HIM? I swear on this dead crow that Ben Wyatt is the male version of me.

Special kudos must also be given to Andy’s Scarecrow Boat t-shirt, because the Scarecrow Boat/ Mouse Rat concert was the first time Parks and Rec really started to feel like Parks and Rec. Parties bring out the best in these people, because they all have totally different definitions of “fun,” but they like hanging out anyway. Ben’s bachelor party is an ode to that most wonderful aspect of these characters: they always manage to find common ground without diluting who they are as individuals.

When Tom just won’t stand for a Homeland bachelor party, he suggests a trip to Essence, the hot new bar in Eagleton. (“Things Magazine said it’s the next big thing.”) Ben agrees, because he only wants the group to be happy. Essence turns out to be Tom Haverford in club form, so Ron hates all of it. The contrast between Ron “There is no wrong way to consume alcohol” Swanson and Ron “THIS is the wrong way to consume alcohol” Swanson is EVERYTHING. Of course he’d wind up with the most touchy-feely drink in a bar that specializes in vodka light flashes and stiff clouds.

Andy is unsettled.

andy essence

The guys then realize that none of them has had a bachelor party before. My favorite Reason Why Not: Tammy 2 thwarted Ron by calling in a bomb threat. Chris decides to turn this shindig into a rotating bachelor party, and Ben puts his sweet “Bachelor Boy” trucker hat on Tom’s head without a second thought. I love that it’s not even a question between them; of course he’ll share the night with his friends.

What follows is the best night of their lives: Jerry gets ice cream at the parlor where he met Gayle, because she was ill or temporarily blind or his father saw her father commit a crime or something. Ron gets to eat meat. And Andy gets to play football with the Colts, which is almost as good as making Tom Brady cry. He’s so, SO happy to play football with his friends, and he’s so adorably starstruck, giggling at Reggie Wayne and telling Jim Irsay, “I love your team, sir. I love them like they are my own children.” I once spent a day following Donald Driver around Disney World, and I had a similar reaction.


chris traeger shoop

You should all know that they’re listening to Benji’s Cool Times Summer Jamz Mix, which is an actual thing on NBC’s spotify, and yes, I’ve included it below.

Since Chris doesn’t get a bachelor party, the guys show up in his office to present him with a Best Man trophy, narrowly snatched from the jaws of Ryan Gosling. They also promise that he’ll find someone great someday: maybe even April, if Andy dies and/ or fakes his death to live in a cave and plot revenge. For today, though, Chris gets to have lunch with Tweep, who wants to write about “good friends having fun and doing nice things for each other.” Look at our Chris, putting friendship and passion above health foods! I would ship them, but “Shawna Malwae-Tweep” doesn’t roll off Rob Lowe’s tongue like “Ann Perkins.” That matters.

Party Snaps:

April: “Is this gonna be one of those cool bachelorette parties where things get out of control and we murder someone and then we all have to take a blood oath not to reveal our secret?”
Ann: “No.”
April: “Then I might have to leave early.”

April on life in jail: “You can make wine in your toilet and fight people, which is a supercool way to live.”

“Boop! That’s me hittin’ the snooze button. Don’t talk again for another ten minutes.”

Tom, at Lucas Oil Stadium: “Ohhh, this is where they play the games!”

Ann: “Well, we’re surrounded by hot guys.”
Ben: “WE’RE surrounded by hot guys.”

“Usually you can only get board game t-shirts in XXL!”

“Tear it up, sixteen. Emancipate them abs!”

So why do you all think the parties happened so early in the year? What sort of shenanigans can we expect for Beslie’s wedding? And what would you order at Essence? Think about it, and enjoy the jamz.


  1. “Did y’all know that Ben Wyatt is nationally ranked in Settlers of Catan? Or that he’s a huge Homeland fan? Of course you did.” and “I would ship them, but “Shawna Malwae-Tweep” doesn’t roll off Rob Lowe’s tongue like “Ann Perkins.” That matters.” both made me laugh out loud. ALSO TRUE. This is my favorite of your Parks recaps! – S

    1. Thank you!!! That thrills me, because yours are hilarious 🙂 I think mine are usually too long–which I know as I’m writing, but every episode is so packed with jokes that I can’t choose. I was internet apartment hunting all day yesterday and couldn’t afford to get too precious with this one. So naturally it ended up being my favorite too.

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