Yesterday the popular NBC comedy Parks and Recreation returned after an all-too-long hiatus for the Sochi Olympics. Now halfway through its sixth season, the series shows few signs of slowing. With a confirmed seventh season (Bricker 2014), and a guest appearance from Michelle Obama in the current season’s one-hour finale set to air April 28th (Ng 2014).
For fans like me TV shows like Parks and Recreation give me hope that TV isn’t all becoming the garbage I subjectively call reality TV. I have a personal soft-spot for TV that has gone through the full creative process. Maybe this is just because I’ve dreamed of being in a writing room of a comedy where a bunch people who get paid to be funny all sit in the same room and brainstorm story ideas. It’s all too apparent that TV writers aren’t treated with the respect they deserve. I first saw that this was true in 2008 when many TV writers went on strike in 2008. I remember The Office couldn’t be shown for a couple of weeks because there wasn’t anyone writing new episodes. It’s obvious how important writers are to the TV-making process but this strike made it known to the viewers and the general public.
Another change in the industry is seeing is the switch into the digital streaming era. The online movie and TV watching service Netflix has been so successful that they’ve created their own TV shows that are only available on their site. Their shows like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black are two of the most talked about TV series. I think this is not only because they are quality shows, but also because Netflix releases an entire series at once meaning the viewer can watch episode after episode, allowing the viewer to become “obsessed” and more likely to tell a friend or post about it on social media.
Here’s hoping that Parks and Recreation will have continued success in its current season as well as in its seventh, and likely final, season. I like to think that because this show has had long-term success that will encourage TV executives to produce shows of the same genre.
Snierson, D. (2014, February 27). ‘parks and recreation’: Exec producer michael schur on what’s next for leslie and the end of the show. Retrieved from http://insidetv.ew.com/2014/02/27/parks-and-recreation-michael-schur-second-half-season-6/
Ng, P. (2014, February 27). Michelle obama to appear on ‘parks and recreation’. Retrieved from http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/parks-recreation-michelle-obama-appear-684101
Bricker, T. (2014, January 19). News/ parks and recreation coming back for season 7! but what about michael j. fox and community?.