Fact: the season four premiere of Parks And Recreation is imminent. Fact: in an interview with Access Hollywood, Amy Poehler promised ‘big changes’ for season four. So, yeah…breaking news from Amy Poehler. We’re gonna try & ease everybody’s tension from now until Sept. 22 with a series of predictions on how some of the questions following the upcoming season will unfold. We have ten, to be exact. Goes something like this:
10. Tammy 1 will win emerge victorious from the prairie drinking contest
As we know about Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman), his mother and both of his ex-wives are all named Tammy. At the end of season three, the mere mention that first ex-wife Tammy had shown up in his office was enough to send second ex wife Tammy running scared. On top of that, mama Tammy (that would be Tammy 0) shows up for the first time, too. First ex-wife Tammy is described in the extended preview as ‘ice cold, dangerous, steely, and maternal’, and somebody whom Ron is terrified of. Mama Tammy is a moonshiner.
From what we saw in that same preview, the Tammys engage in a drinking contest to settle their ‘differences’. We have our money on Tammy 1, because Patricia Clarkson in a skirt suit looks like an android sent from a future where Stepford wives have enslaved the rest of humanity.
9. Tom’s high-end, all-media conglomerate will fail…and it will be hilarious
The end of season three saw Tom Haverford (Aziz Ansari) follow his heart and go into business with his douchy hetero soul mate Jean-Ralphio (Ben Schwartz). What did they go into business doing? Building Pawnee’s (as far as we know) first and (probably) only high-end, all-media conglomerate. We have no idea what that means, and we’re pretty they don’t really know, either. Either their plan is just crazy enough to work, or just plain crazy. We’re betting on the latter, meaning it will come crashing down somehow, and Tom and Jean-Ralphio will be forced to bid a fond farewell to each other.
8. Writers will find some way to keep Jean-Ralphio around, anyway…
He and Tom are too pricelessly lame together to be kept apart for long. The Jean-Ralphio character is the embodiment of what executive producer Michael Schur meant when he described Parks and Recreation as a sitcom version of HBO’s The Wire—a show whose fictional universe is so wide and diverse that any number of background characters can pop in at any time for a number of reasons.
7. Mark Brandanawicz will return
Remember him? Leslie’s longtime former crush and former Pawnee city planner who quit his job and left town after the government went bankrupt at the end of season 2? Yeah, we think he’ll be back somehow. They way he left seemed too anti-climactic and unsentimental, and left too much to be desired for him not to ever show his face again. We thought it would happen last season. Didn’t happen. We think it’ll happen this season.
6. Jerry will save the day. You read that right.
We don’t when, we don’t know how, and we damn sure don’t know what about. But if a broken clock can be right twice a day, Jerry can and will find it within himself to single-handedly untangle some kind of bureaucratic knot Leslie ties herself in to.
5. The inevitable Ann Perkins-Chris Traeger reunion will fall flat
We’re not predicting that Ann and Chris will get back together. That’s not a prediction. Everybody knows it will happen. What we are predicting is that nobody will much care when it does. We love Rob Lowe as Chris, and we’ve always liked Rashida Jones as Ann, too, but together these two have about as much chemistry between them as Al & Tipper Gore. Yes, we know they’re divorced, but you get the point.
4. Andy will get a new job
We really think Andy Dwyer’s (Chris Pratt) days as a shoe-shine boy are numbered. Remember, Tom has left the building, and this opens up some space in the department. If Jerry can hold down a position there, anybody can. Plus, Andy’s a total gomer. He’s bound to mess up whatever job he’s tasked with. This obviously makes him an irresistible asset to bureaucracy-hating Ron.
3. Mouse Rat will become marginally famous
Andy designating April as his band’s manager will pay off slightly, leading them to cultivate a very small but very dedicated cross-section of fans who will be the only ones who don’t think Mouse Rat is the worst band name of all time. All seems well with everybody’s favorite couple, until…
2. April and Andy will separate
It just seems fitting, is all. Everything we love about their relationship—it’s unnatural wholesomeness, it’s quirky unpredictability, it’s non-linear trajectory—are exactly the reasons why they will break up. Their getting married about a month after they were officially together was the first indication that a) nothing about them is conventional, and b) they have no clue what they’re doing except playing it by feel, and nothing is out of the realm of possibility when that’s the plan.
1. Leslie will choose career over Ben
Of course that won’t end it permanently—all great TV couples have to be broken up at least once before they eventually ride off into the sunset. Leslie’s been dreaming about a real career in politics long before she met Ben (Adam Scott), and she won’t (for now) let their burgeoning relationship get in the way now that she’s on the fast track for city council.
Have reason to take umbrage with any of our shameless predictions? Be sure to make us feel your pain in the comments section…