**WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD. If you haven’t watched Parks and Rec through to the end of season six, but you still read this, you will probably get mad at me for spoiling some stuff. I get sad and clingy when people are mad at me, so just don’t do it.**
If there’s anyone who can figure out how to have her cake and eat it too, it’s Leslie Knope. Remember that Parks and Rec finale last season that made you go “whhhUUnt?” I’m still recovering. Andy is still a klutz, Jerry-Gary-Larry has another new name (Terry) and Leslie has bangs. Because nothing signifies that time has passed quite like a different hairstyle.
Parks and Rec can’t come back fast enough. I’m already nostalgic for the days of the old Parks Department offices, but I’m excited to see where the final season takes us. And guess what? We just learned some really cool details on what’s to come. At the end of season 6, we received a lot of info to digest in a short amount of time, so let’s review the things we know for sure about the impending 13-episode (sniff) 7th and final season.
The year is, in fact, 2017.
This is not a drill. The whole “Surprise! It’s 2017” thing wasn’t a dream sequence, or a fantasy, or an elaborate lie crafted to mess with us. It really happened: Pawnee is officially in the future. “We may go back and see a couple of things here and there of what happened in the interim, but we’re not faking you out,” executive producer Michael Schur told Entertainment Weekly. “This is a real shift for the show in terms of when it takes place.”
Ron, Tom and Donna WILL be there.
Even though we didn’t see them in the three-years-hence scene, they’ll be back for season 7. We don’t know what they look like or what they’re doing, but we know they’ll be back.
Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones are coming back, too!
The news of Chris and Ann’s return . . .literally. . . made my day. They’re set to appear in an episode, and I can’t wait to see how excited Leslie will be, what anniversary they’ll be celebrating and the amazing greeting she comes up with.
So are Ben Schwartz and Megan Mullally.
Because it wouldn’t be the final season without last words from Jean-Ralphio or Tammy II.
AND Jon Hamm!
Jon Hamm sure has a knack at playing incompetent characters on NBC Thursday night comedies. First there was Drew, a doctor who lives in “the bubble” on 30 Rock. Now there’s Ed, the incompetent employee on Parks and Rec. Upon his original cameo, I was slightly outraged to think I’d just been robbed of three years’ worth of Jon Hamm, but knowing he’ll be back puts me at ease.
At the end of it all, we’re going to be happy.
“The best finales are ones where you can imagine the characters continuing to move on with their lives,” said Schur. That became our goal: Let’s do a nice, character-based story where, at the end of it, you’re like, ‘OK, I feel like everyone is safe and happy.’” Sounds good to me.
And because it would be silly to go an entire article without a Ron Swanson gif:
At this point it seems like anything goes, so fingers crossed they’ll bring back Li’l Sebastian as a ghost.