Parks and Recreation: It’s the end of the world and Tom Haverford’s dream dies– but it’s super fun!

A guy sporting a white bowl haircut arrives at City Hall proselytizing the end of the world. Zorp is on the move, and Herb and his fellow cult members are planning an all-night vigil to witness the end of days. And they need a park permit. Ben and Leslie are on it. Leslie is thrilled to be working closely with Ben. But Ben thinks it’s still weird between them. Right? Well, sure it is, now that you’ve said it, Ben.

Cut to: an empty warehouse that houses a few vestiges of former success (white walls, ambient lighting, clear acrylic toilet) and two dudes in casual blazers seated on the vast floor and shouting into the abyss. It’s Tom and Jean-Ralphio, at the former E720 HQ. In the tradition of Ask Jeeves, E720 has bitten the dust. The brotrepreneurs each have 5 G’s left, and after some solemn contemplation, have decided to use the combined cash to—can ya guess?—throw a huuuuuge party!

April and Andy are making their plans for the evening. Andy’s content to do their usual: order pizza, play Xbox, then watch April make prank calls. But April’s got an itch. It could be the last night on earth, and she wants to do something weird. Andy and his blushing bride consult his bucket list. April can’t choose only one of her adorable idiot husband’s adorably inane desires (“make the world’s best grilled cheese sandwich” is on there), so they empty their bank account (taking out a grand, leaving them with $18) and decide to plow through all of ‘em.

Ron shows up at the Zorp-watching vigil. He finds them ridiculous, but believes in the founding fathers’ vision of absolute religious freedom. Plus, he’s bringing the flutes he carved out of wood. Local journalist/attractive woman Shawna Malwae-Tweep (former paramour of Leslie’s former paramour Mark Brendanawicz) has arrived to cover the Zorpfest, and immediately starts flirting with Ben. Leslie tries to distract by pitching Shawna some lengthy headlines, which backfires as soon as Shawna asks her what Ben’s “story” is. WHORE! Leslie strategizes with Ann about how to stop Ben and Shawna from having sex, as she’s sure they will do within the next 5 minutes. They are being awfully touchy-feely. And then Ms. Tweep goes and tries to invite Ben to Tom and Jean-Ralphio’s party. Leslie is officially in a bunch.

Despite the copious bouncers, hotties, and champagne flutes, and a convincing amount of hype (sponsored by SoBe Lifewater), not one person not on what’s left of the E720 payroll shows up to Tom and Jean-Ralphio’s shindig. They are relieved, ‘cause no one shows up to a party on time, son! But never fear: a few hours later, not only have people shown up to E720 HQ, but so has a tiger in a white cage. “Party scientist” Tom is acting like King Shit of Fuck Mountain, in a most pleasing way. The Last Party in Earth is a fun damn time, and it’s great to see Tom and J-R back on top. Enter the drum line! And enter Lucy, Tom’s ex, who is looking hotter than ever. Tom thanks J-R for calling her for him. (Note: J-R called her for himself. His bad!)

Back at the vigil, we learn that Ron Swanson is a wood flutist of the highest order. An always impressionable Chris is momentarily swayed toward the cult, but is scared off when Herb starts talking about something to do with Zorp’s “volcano mouth.” Fair enough.

April’s sister Natalie and Jerry have been enlisted to help Andy check “being an action star” off his bucket list. He puts on his Burt Macklin disguise (this time, including riot helmet) and hurls himself through a plate-glass window. Then he “saves” April from a butter-knife-wielding, script-reading Jerry. Natalie captures it all on video. Sometime later, in the dead of night, Andy and April “borrow” a car (Ben’s?) and hit the road, destination unknown.

Leslie manages to kidnap Ben away from that WHORE, Ms. Tweep, with some convoluted story about Mick Jaggar’s gas station. Ben is annoyed, and basically tells Leslie to leave him alone because hanging out with her post-breakup is just too hard. Leslie chokes back tears, but agrees. Do you feel the love?? Can you stand it?

Leslie is super sad now, and spills her guts to Ron: she wants to be with Ben if the world is ending tomorrow. Ron assures her that world is not ending, but her feelings are nonetheless significant. Herb pipes in with a consoling thought that everyone will be dead in 20 minutes. Thanks, psycho!

In the light of day (yes, the world still exists), the Last Party on Earth wraps up, and Tom, after spilling the facts of his impending brokeassedness to Lucy, receives a kiss in return. Tom’s happy again. Leslie goes to see Ben, expecting to apologize to Ben and Shawna. But Shawna’s not there, and–bingo!–Leslie’s happy again. April and Andy arrive at the Grand Canyon, and it’s so beautiful, that April can’t find anything annoying about it. April and Andy are happy (not again, but still). And Herb and Leslie schedule the next End of the World. It’s May 20. Get in your flute orders now!

Click here to watch April and Andy’s road trip video diary.

Megan Gilbert

Megan Gilbert is a Brooklyn-based writer, making her a mystical unicorn. She has written for the New York Press, Paste Magazine blog, Blush Media, Underwater New York. She writes ad copy for Gawker Media, holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Sarah Lawrence College, and is working on a novel starring a mystical unicorn (jk). Read her work at and follow her on Twitter: @ithardlymatt3rs

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