Man, oh, man another "Parks and Rec" Halloween episode. Some people get excited about Christmas specials, I get excited about Halloween episodes. While "Meet N Greet" has some pretty fun moments, it's bogged down by a weak A story, which is fine, it's still a fun episode, just not as epic as Season 2’s Halloween episode “Greg Pikitis,” which I see as being the episode where Parks first hit its stride.
First, let’s get the wet blanket, non-festive stuff out of the way, with the Knope campaign hosting Pawnee’s small business leaders for a meet ‘n greet. Leslie hopes to make nice with the head of Pawnee’s chamber of commerce (that's what it was, wasn't it?). Things go sour for Leslie when she puts Tom in charge of her meeting. Tom has seized this opportunity to pimp out his now broke non-company Entertainment 720, plastering his face all over everything. Whenever Leslie tries to talk, Tom interurrupts, when she tries to put on a presentation, Tom uses it as an introduction for himself.
Of course, Tom makes a mess of everything, which incenses Leslie—surprising considering how patient she can be with her friends. Hell, she nearly drowns the boy in his stretch limo hot tub thing. But it turns out, the hammer finally fell on Entertainment 720, the company is broke and this meet and greet was Tom’s last chance to convince some investors that his company can do, well, anything. Tom’s confession cools Leslie’s rage, and she takes him out for breakfast—and the two of them start to reform Tom’s business idea. Tom's a competent guy, with some guidence he will no doubt make something of his company, and judging by Leslie's newfound interest in maybe guiding Entertainment 720 towards something resembling profit, I get the feeling that this season will end with Tom making something of his big company that could.
Now the fun part, April and Andy are throwing a Halloween party! Too bad they didn’t tell Ben, whose style of passive aggressive conflict resolution doesn’t really work with April—who doesn’t care he’s annoyed—or Andy—who’s too clueless to pick up on Ben’s not-so-subtle hints. But while Ben locks himself in the room, being the big bag of fun that he is, the part rages outside leaving the rest of the cast to play. Ron takes it upon himself to fix up April and Andy’s hovel, taking a trip to Lowe’s to stock up on tools and enlisting Anne The Eggplant to help him out—it’s not like she was doing anything else. I’ve complained a lot about Anne in this season and how aimless she seems, but I think I’m starting to like the direction they’re taking her. Cranking up how awkward and out of place she is with the rest of the cast hasn’t really allowed Anne the chance to come into her own, but it does allow for some funny interactions—especially with Ron this week.
Also at the party, Chris and Jerry’s daughter… uh, I don’t remember her name. Let’s just call her Jerry’s Pretty Daughter (JPD) until I remember. Chris shows up to the party decked out as Sherlock Holmes and invites JPD to come at Jerry’s insistence. Chris suspected that it might be awkward for the two of them to party in front of Jerry, and judging by Jerry’s reaction when he sees the two of them daggering on the dance floor and frantically making out on the couch, it seems that Chris’s deduction was right (see what I did there? Deduction? Sherlock? Eh?). Chris is a nice guy, but he seems like a bit of a romantic train wreck, I can’t see his relationship with JPD ending well for anyone.
As the party goes on, Andy decides to figure out what’s eating Ben the only way he knows how: beating it out of him. A dozen or so headlocks, a full nelson and a broken nose later, Andy finally gets Ben to open up to him, and all the guy wants is a bit of respect. Ben is proving to be one hell of a character this season. Pair him up with anyone on the Parks cast and you get fireworks. Come to think of it, maybe he should date Anne instead of Leslie.
No, Kris. That’s stupid.
See you guys next week!