!!Leslie Knope [-(Creator/AmyPoehler)-]
[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/leslie_knope_2903.jpg]]
->''"It is my dream to build a park that I one day visit with my White House staff on my birthday. And they say, 'President Knope, this park is awesome. Now we understand why you’re the first female president of the United States.' "''

Leslie is the deputy director of the Parks and Recreation Department in Pawnee, Indiana. An {{inversion}} of the ObstructiveBureaucrat trope, Leslie is a cheerful bureaucrat full of can-do spirit. This makes her ThePollyanna on a show where almost everyone else is cynical and jaded to one degree or another. She is also a {{Determinator}}.

* {{Adorkable}}
* AfraidOfNeedles: To the point of making a PrecisionFStrike against ''Ann''.
* AllLovingHero: Edging closer to this trope as her {{Determinator}} qualities make her more and more effective.
* AmbitionIsEvil: Averted! Leslie is extremely ambitious (just read the above quote), but she is also very moral. In some episodes, she is presented with an immoral way to achieve one of her goals and considers using it, but ultimately she ends up feeling guilty and doesn't go through with it.
* {{Badass}}: She has her moments, never forget that she's a capable hunter.
* BadLiar: Honest to a fault, Leslie's rare attempts at subterfuge invariably fall flat. In many cases, she ends up ratting ''herself'' out.
* BeleagueredBureaucrat:
** This becomes especially apparent in "Christmas Scandal", where it's shown that her duties are so numerous that the combined efforts of all six of her coworkers can't get the job done.
** Her overextension is given attention again in "Sweet Sixteen", where Ron states that she's been pulling 100 hours a week trying to give equal attention to her job and her city council campaign. Throughout the episode she keeps making minor blunders due to neglecting something from either side of her professional life. At the end of the episode she decides to reduce her time at work to 10 hours a week.
* BigEater: when it comes to waffles, whipped cream, sugar, or all of the above, Leslie's essentially a bottomless pit.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: She's ''very'' good at her job, and probably should have Ron's. She is however, an extremely eccentric WomanChild.
* CatchPhrase:
-->'''Leslie''': It's every girl's dream to ''[something incredibly wonky, obscure and/or overspecific].''
-->'''Leslie''': Ann, you ''[insert strangely condescending comment that compliments her beauty but points out her naivete]''
* CharacterDevelopment: Leslie had some [[Series/TheOfficeUS Michael Scott]]-ish aspects to her personality in Season 1, but in Season 2 the character became much less obnoxious, and more of a hyper-competent, upbeat Pollyanna.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}
* {{Determinator}}: Best exemplified by her ''masterful'' oration of her speech intended to attract sponsors to Harvest Festival. All while she was near delirious with the flu, and quickly reverted to sickness-induced delirium during a short Q&A session.
** This is Leslie's great weakness as well as her strength. In ''many'' episodes the conflict can be summarized as "Leslie's friends have to convince her that she can't change a situation she considers unacceptable." Of course, she is so [[HypercompetentSidekick hypercompetent]] that she frequently finds ways to improve the situation ''anyway.''
*** Summarized nicely in "The Smallest Park" when Ann interrupts Leslie's complaints about how unfair it is to call her a steamroller:
-->'''Ann:'''You're a steamroller! You're a massive, enormous, runaway steamroller with no brakes and a cement brick on the gas pedal!
* DistaffCounterpart: Back in the first season, critics tended to dismiss Leslie as "[[Series/TheOfficeUS Michael Scott]] in a skirt", but it's generally agreed that she became more her own character after the series GrewTheBeard, as unlike Michael Scott, she is not only good at her job, but totally deserved to have been promoted into it.
* [[DoesNotLikeSpam Does Not Like Salad]]: Or other disgusting things.
* ExpositoryHairstyleChange: Wears a small, very tight French braid in her hair curving around the top of her head in "Jerry's Painting", apparently because she takes very well to being compared to a Greek goddess.
* FanGirl: When it comes to ''Literature/HarryPotter''. She made best friend Ann watch all [[Film/HarryPotter eight movies]] even though she doesn't like ''Harry Potter''.
** She's also a huge fangirl of UsefulNotes/JoeBiden and most prominent American women in politics, to the point of covering the walls of her office with their pictures. She's also a type of geek rarely portrayed in the media, the government policy wonk.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Choleric
* GenreSavvy: A lot more than average government officials it seems. How many people do you picture fixing the controversy with Jerry's painting by [[spoiler: making Jerry make a new one in which Tom is the bare chested centaur instead of a female bare chested centaur.]]?
* GlurgeAddict: Mildly. She really likes cute things, but not to an annoying degree.
-->'''Leslie''': Scientifically hummingbirds are the world’s cutest animals. I mean, they're so small, they have tiny beaks and they only eat sugar water. I mean what beats that? Come on. Baby monkeys in diapers? Yeah... they do. Baby monkeys in diapers are the cutest.
* GoGetterGirl: Has the ambitious, driven personality down pat.
* HairOfGoldHeartOfGold: Despite her very ambitious nature, Leslie is extremely nice and many of her goals are motivated by caring for her friends and the citizens of Pawnee.
* [[spoiler: HappilyMarried: To Ben as of mid season 5.]]
* HeterosexualLifePartners: With Ann
* HypercompetentSidekick: A rare example of the lead character fitting this trope. This suits her boss just fine.
* ImmigrantPatriotism: During her campaign, Leslie is stunned to learn that she was actually born in Eagleton, not Pawnee, partly because she hates Eagleton and partly because most of the voters hate Eagleton. But as she thinks about it further she realizes that it's the ''choice'' to continue living in and trying to improve Pawnee that really matters, and manages to communicate that to the voters.
* [[NiceGuy Nice Girl]]: Despite her faults, Leslie is overall a very kindhearted person who constantly does nice things for her friends and goes out of her way to help others. Ron puts it best when he says, "Leslie has a lot of qualities I find horrifying, but the worst one by far is how thoughtful she can be".
* NumberTwo: Officially, she is this to Ron, but she actually does all the work.
* ObliviousToLove: Initially, regarding Ben's interest in her.
* OfficialCouple: With [[spoiler: Ben]].
* PlatonicLifePartners: With Ron.
* PluckyGirl: The absolute poster girl for the trope.
* ThePollyanna
* RealWomenNeverWearDresses: Leslie is a competent golfer and hunter, and she almost always dresses in a masculine manner, but considering that appearing to be "too feminine" is a concern for women in the real world for business and politics, this is very much a JustifiedTrope.
* SavvyGuyEnergeticGirl: Energetic girl to Ben's savvy guy.
* SmallNameBigEgo: [[DownplayedTrope Kind of]]. She's not full of herself, but she's convinced that her small government job is much more important than it really is. She also has no doubt that she will one day be president of the United States.
** Increasingly looks like this will be averted completely, as her work is getting her more attention - at least from local Pawnee politicians.
* SweetTooth: She puts ''sugar'' on ''pasta''.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: She piles whipped cream onto ''everything''. She also loves Belgian waffles, specifically the ones from JJ's Diner.
* WeirdnessMagnet: Somewhat. She's seldom had a "normal" date--something extremely outlandish happens, or the date himself is outlandish. Incidents include a blazing dress, an Ambien overdose, a date sticking his hand in her mouth as she slept, and a free MRI. As far as we've seen, [[LouisCK Dave]] and Ben are the only men she's dated without some kind of off-putting quirk or glaring character flaw.
** A slightly off-putting quirk of Dave's came out when he briefly returns to Pawnee and [[spoiler: confesses his love to Leslie, and then handcuffs Ben to a urinal.]]
* WhatTheHellIsThatAccent: Happens whenever she tries to do an accent or an imitation. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeQssS61_mg Here's a bunch of examples]].
* WhiteGuilt: Shows occasional signs of this, especially when dealing with Ken Hotate, the local Native American leader, who likes to cheerfully invoke EverythingIsRacist to provoke this reaction and get his way. She largely outgrows it in later interactions with him.
* WideEyedIdealist
* [[ManChild Woman Child]]: Leslie is cheerful, hyperactive, and a little naïve. Not to mention her fondness for candy and dislike of vegetables. She is competent, however--indeed, ''very'' competent.
-->'''Ann''' (in a deleted scene): Leslie is incredible. She has the energy of a ten year-old. [[SweetTooth And the same taste in snacks.]]
* {{Workaholic}}: Hell, in "Citizen Knope" she attempts to steal some work from the office to do at home during her ''paid'' suspension.

!!Ann Perkins [-(Rashida Jones)-]
[[quoteright:319:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ann_perkins_846.png]]
->''"The Parks Department has done so much for me, that if I can help them out in any way I will. [[TerribleArtist Oh god.]] Maybe I should just give them all free flu shots."''

Leslie's [[HeterosexualLifePartners Heterosexual Life Partner]]. They first meet in the pilot episode, when Ann attended a town hall meeting to bring an abandoned construction pit to the government's attention. For the first three seasons, Ann was a nurse at the local hospital, making it somewhat baffling that she seemed to spend so much time with the other characters at City Hall. Eventually, she was given a part-time job at City Hall to solve this problem. She is generally a [[StraightMan Straight Woman]].

* AmbiguouslyBrown: Obviously applies to any character played by Rashida Jones, who is black and Jewish.
-->'''Leslie:''' I’ve said this to you before and I know it makes you uncomfortable, but you’re thoughtful and you’re brilliant. And your ambiguous ethnic blend perfectly represents the dream of the American melting pot.
* BigEater: she apparently once consumed an entire cheesecake at Leslie's request, commenting only that it was delicious and that she would haven eaten ten cheesecakes if asked.
* CannotTellAJoke: She notably fails when she attempts to be funny, often saying an awkward joke and then immediately regretting it and kicking herself under her breath.
* ExpositoryHairstyleChange: Colors a few locks of her hair bright red in an attempt to impress Chris in "Camping".
* ExtremeDoormat: Definitely has elements of this. She's very passive compared to Leslie and is always pulled into Leslie's plans. Also, due to the FlorenceNightingaleEffect and WeaknessTurnsHerOn, she's very inclined to allow boyfriends to take advantage of her.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Phlegmatic
* FlorenceNightingaleEffect: Ann is clearly shown to be attracted to vulnerable and sickly men. She waited on Andy hand and foot when his legs broke, and tries to coddle and protect him like a child, and kisses him when he ends up in the hospital again. She was also incredibly threatened and uncomfortable by Chris being almost completely perfect, until he got a nasty case of the flu, which made her ecstatic.
* HeterosexualLifePartners: With Leslie
* HospitalHottie: Not that she actually spends much time working there.
* MistakenForGay: As a RunningGag, she and Leslie are repeatedly mistaken for a lesbian couple.
* OfficialCouple: With [[spoiler: Chris]] as of season 5.
* OneHourWorkWeek: Ann's nursing job. The show is a WorkCom, it's just not dedicated to ''her'' work. Occasionally we see her at her work, usually whenever a main character ends up in the hospital. Ann getting a part time job at the city's health department as of the end of Season 3 is most likely an attempt to avert this trope.
** Of course since this is a Mockumentary, We can assume it is all done offscreen and has been edited out.
* PutOnABus
* ReallyGetsAround: She finally learns how to put her looks to good use in season three, and is shown with at least one new paramour every episode of that season.
* ShipperOnDeck: Ann really, really wants Leslie and Ben to get together (and even sneaks an Al Green song onto their road trip mix, which is designed to be as un-sexy as possible.).
* SoBeautifulItsACurse: A mild case. Being so beautiful, she's never been dumped before. When Chris breaks up with her, his positive personality and strange wording plus her inexperience make her not realize it until a week later and she is blindsided by it. As Leslie put it in an earlier episode:
-->'''Leslie:''' Ann, I always forget you're so pretty you're not used to rejection!
* [[StraightMan Straight Woman]]
* WeaknessTurnsHerOn: As indicated by her finding Chris more attractive when she was caring for him than when he was a perfect human specimen. [[FridgeBrilliance This also explains her relationship with Andy and why it didn't work out with Mark.]]
* WhatDoesSheSeeInHim: Ann goes through as many lame, unattractive boyfriends as attractive ones in season three. Leslie has to call her out on it in "The Fight" when her current guy happens to be [[DumbassDJ the Douche]].

!!Tom Haverford [-(Creator/AzizAnsari)-]
[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tom_haverford_2039.jpg]]
->''"I had to call in a few favors, but if you don't call in favors to look at women in bikinis and assign them numerical grades, what the hell do you call in favors for?"''

Tom is Leslie's immediate subordinate, in charge of scheduling parks activities and an aspiring media mogul. Networking, hot women, expensive suits, hot women, slacking off, and hot women are just a few of his favorite things.

* ActorSharedBackground: Like Aziz Ansari, Tom is an Indian-American from South Carolina.
* AlwaysSecondBest: He has a sort of inferiority complex for Ron, which came to a boiling point in the third season premiere.
* CampStraight: Despite his HandsomeLech personality, he invests in a [[WhereEveryBodyKnowsYourFlame gay bar]], [[RealMenWearPink wears pink shirts]], and drinks stereotypically "gay" drinks. Leslie lampshades this in "Pawnee Zoo":
-->'''Leslie:''' Okay, so I know you're not gay.
-->'''Tom:''' No, I'm not.
-->'''Leslie:''' But you're very effeminate.
-->'''Tom:''' What?
-->'''Leslie:''' Well, you're wearing a shirt with a coiled snake on it.
* CantHoldHisLiquor
-->'''Detlef Schrempf''': He had two beers. ''Light'' beers.
** Oddly, in what may be an OutOfCharacterMoment, he isn't shown to be terribly intoxicated by his invention Snakejuice, which has terrible after-effects for the rest of the cast (especially Ron). Though he still ends up drunk.
* CasanovaWannabe: Sometimes to the point of real pathos.
* CharacterDevelopment: Over the seasons, he becomes more mature, confident, and self-reliant.
* ChivalrousPervert: Is actually the one to tell Ben they should make sure a drunken Joan Callomazzo gets safely home from lunch with them.
* CitizenshipMarriage: [[spoiler:His wife Wendy. Despite him being brown-skinned and her being white, she was the one who needed the green card. She's Canadian.]]
* TheDandy: He has a full-sized room for a closet and explicitly states that he wears pink for the sake of "peacocking".
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Sanguine
* HypocriticalHumor: Despite his obsession with being trendy and stylish, he is repeatedly shown to be woefully out of touch with what is actually trendy and stylish.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Has a big, big problem with this. It's on full display in "Meet 'N' Greet", where he turns an event for Leslie to get to know local business owners into a investment pitch for his company Entertainment 720. While he did it because [[spoiler:E720 was bankrupt and he was desperate for funds]], it also wasn't particularly out of character.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: As Leslie puts it, "Tom Haverford is a selfish, sleazy, self-promoting, good-hearted, secretly kind and wonderful tiny, little person."
* ManChild: Seems to have the mentality of a fifteen-year old boy.
* MockMillionaire: Comes up often but particularly emphasized during the Entertainment 720 arc, when he and Jean-Ralphio carelessly spent money on buying excessive props and hiring attractive women as surplus employees while not doing any actual work or generating revenue for their company.
* TheNicknamer
* OddFriendship: Andy and Ben are both about as far from him personality-wise as possible, each for very different reasons, but he hangs out with both of them a lot. A later episode even shows that he considers them more of his true friends than the almost identical John Ralphio.
* PetTheDog: After Leslie tears up the Venezuelans' check in "Sister City", Tom secretly takes all the tips he earned making himself the Venezuelans' errand-boy and donates it all toward the park fund.
* [[PrettyFlyForAWhiteGuy Pretty Fly For An Indian Guy]]: At one point, Tom mentions having carefully cultivating a Jay-Z vibe and once dressed up as the rapper T-Pain for Halloween. He's also fond of using the slang term "boo" to refer to a significant other.
* {{Schemer}}: He's always involved in some [[GetRichQuickScheme plan or invention to get fabulously wealthy]], but none of them ever work.
* SelfDeprecation: Will not deny that he rides others' coattails.
-->'''Tom''': Behind every successful man is me: smiling and taking partial credit.
* SmallNameBigEgo: Full force.
* ThisIsMyNameOnForeign: His birth name is Darwish Sabir Ismael Gani, but he changed it since he thought people with "funny-sounding Muslim names" didn't have a chance in politics. He admits this reason is HilariousInHindsight after BarackObama.
* TookALevelInBadass[=/=]TookALevelInKindness: After his failure with Entertainment 720, he successfully manages to run a small suit-rental business before being bought out by a competitor. He now works in City Government to help bring outside businesses to Pawnee, impressing Ron and Leslie. He's also noticeably less selfish.

!!Ron Swanson [-(Nick Offerman)-]
[[quoteright:320:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ron_swanson_2743.jpg]]
->''"My idea of a perfect government is one guy who sits in a small room at a desk, and the only thing he’s allowed to decide is who to nuke. The man is chosen based on some kind of IQ test, and maybe also a physical tournament, like a decathlon. And women are brought to him, maybe... when he desires them."''

Leslie's manly, mustachioed, unapologetically libertarian boss who, engaged in a continuous attempt to sabotage the Pawnee government, secretly (or not-so-secretly) tries to stop anything from getting done. Leslie basically does his job for him, allowing him to devote his time to being a MemeticBadass.

* AcquiredPoisonImmunity: His family have their own brand of moonshine that can only be legally used to strip varnish off of speedboats. This has to be the only reason why he can knock back so much alcohol yet never get hungover. (Tom's Snakejuice got him drunk, but he suffered no ill effects the morning after.)
* AnnoyingLaugh: Despite his unabashed masculinity, he titters like a schoolgirl on the few occasions where he does laugh.
* {{Badass}}: One of the central aspects of his character is how incredibly badass he is. To put into perspective just how insane he is, every onscreen fight he's been involved in has ended in ''a single punch''.
** BadassMustache
* BetaCouple: With [[spoiler: Diane]] as of season 5.
* BigEater: Especially in regards to red meat and breakfast meals, and all other foodstuffs are treated with suspicion, or outright derision. The only thing that interests him in a strip club is the breakfast buffet. He says that if he does not have at least three breakfast meals a day, he acts like a tired whiny child. He has an enormous picture of bacon and eggs framed in his office.
-->'''Ron:''' Just give me all the bacon and eggs you have... Wait, wait. I worry what you just heard was, "Give me a lot of bacon and eggs." What I said was, "Give me ''all'' the bacon and eggs you have." Do you understand?
* BirthdayHater: He hates birthdays so much that he has gone to great lengths to keep anyone from finding out, including having it redacted from all government documents.
--> "I don't like loud noises. And people making a fuss. And I especially don't like people celebrating because they know a piece of ''private information'' about me. Plus the whole thing is a scam - birthdays were invented by Hallmark to sell cards."
* BreakoutCharacter
* TheCastShowoff: Nick Offerman actually is a woodworker. He also plays saxophone.
* CatchPhrase: "Bully."
* CrazyPrepared: Keeps a survival backpack hidden in a ventilation grate down the hall.
** Taken UpToEleven when Ron retrieves the bag after his first ex-wife shows up. It's labeled, indicating that Ron prepared it ''specifically'' to escape from Tammy One.
* EveryoneLovesBlondes: Inverted. While he doesn't hate them, after his relationship with Tammy One, he only dates dark-haired women because she ruined blondes for him.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Melancholic
* [[spoiler: HappilyMarried: To Diane as of the beginning of season 6.]]
* HatesBeingTouched
* HenpeckedHusband: Around Tammy One.
* HiddenDepths: Ron moonlights as jazz saxophonist "Duke Silver" and plays in clubs outside Pawnee.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: He may act like he hates all his coworkers, but he's shown on more than one occasion that if any of them are seriously hurting or in trouble, he'll be there for them.
* KavorkaMan
* LikeParentLikeSpouse: Has ''two'' ex-wives and a ''mother'' named Tammy.
* ManlyTears: He's only ever cried twice. The first time was when a bus ran into him as a child. The second time was when he first caught word of Li'l Sebastian's death. He ''very nearly'' cries a third time in "Citizen Knope" in reaction to Leslie's Christmas gift--remote-controlled closing doors for his office.
* MentorArchetype: He essentially mentors the entire cast to varying degrees.
* MoralityPet: Andy has slowly been softening him up.
* NonIdleRich: Ron owns large amounts of gold, to the point where the 5% he is going to leave to each of his kids is considered a lot of money. He's an odd example: he does nothing at work, but builds as much of his possessions as he can.
* ObstructiveBureaucrat: He acts as one on purpose in a (thanks to Leslie's hypercompetence) questionably effective attempt to make the government as useless as possible.
* OneManArmy: Nothing can keep him down.
* OnlySaneMan: He doesn't get involved in his coworkers' hijinks.
* PatrioticFervor: Of course. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0HyebF6O0w Here's what he thinks of Canada]]. Ron especially hates anything resembling CommieLand.
* PerpetualFrowner: Even when he's being nice, he's stern. The only thing that makes him smile is the collapse of the Pawnee government.
* ProfessionalSlacker: He basically lets Leslie run the department, which she is only too happy to do. Ron, as a fierce super-libertarian, is actually ideologically opposed to the government accomplishing things; the one time he is seen actually working with enthusiasm is when the city needs ideas on how to slash its budget.
* RatedMForManly
* RealLifeRelative: Megan Mullaly (Tammy Two) actually is Nick Offerman's wife.
* RealMenEatMeat: To the point that he thinks fish are acceptable to catch, but not to eat since "fish meat is practically a vegetable".
** Ron is also the inventor of the "Turf and Turf." This is a 16-ounce T-bone steak lightly garnished with a 24-ounce porterhouse steak.
** In one episode, he is seen eating a turkey leg wrapped in bacon and guess what's it called? [[note]] The Swanson [[/note]]
* SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan: The manly man to Chris's sensitive guy.
* SlidingScaleOfLibertarianismAndAuthoritarianism: As indicated by the above quote, Ron's political philosophy falls quite far on the libertarian side. He has explicitly referred to himself as a libertarian a number of times and sees no value in government-run institutions to the point of wanting ''everything'' privatized. Unfortunately for him, Leslie always has ambitious plans to expand the Parks Department. HilarityEnsues.
* TeamDad: Begrudgingly
* TisOnlyABulletInTheBrain: In ''Hunting Trip''.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: Red meat (especially steaks and burgers), breakfast food, and Scotch whisky.
* {{Tsundere}}: Clearly towards Diane in Season 5.
* YouKillItYouBoughtIt: He intends to leave the bulk of his money to the person or animal that kills him.

!!April Ludgate-Dwyer [-(Creator/AubreyPlaza)-]
[[quoteright:347:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/april_ludgate_5796.jpg]]
->''"No, I didn't win, but at least I didn't make any new friendships."''

April is TheSnarkKnight. Originally, she was an apathetic college intern who constantly slacked off and seemed like she would rather be anywhere else. In the second season, she was hired as Ron's assistant specifically to stonewall anyone wishing to meet with him. Near the end of the fourth season, it's revealed that, while she generally hates people, April loves animals and realizes that this might be her calling. In season five, the incompetent Animal Control Department is absorbed by the Parks Department and April is appointed director of the new sub-department.

* ActorSharedBackground: Being of half-Puerto Rican descent. However, it's on the actress's father's side and the character's mother's side.
* AmbiguouslyBi: She expresses interest in going to a strip club, and thinks the topless painting of Leslie is hot.
* AsideGlance: Due to the format, all the characters do it from time to time, but the aside glance appears to be April's primary form of communication.
* BetaCouple: With Andy after they become a couple. She is the youngest, most [[TheCynic cynical]], and apathetic of the women and is ironically the first of them to get married.
* BeYourself: In season five she gets put into the public spotlight more and more as a representative for the parks department. At first she imitates Leslie as a way to get through her presentations, since Leslie has always been successful at that sort of thing and it helps her deal with her nerves, but April realizes that Leslie's methods don't work for her and simply starts acting like herself. While this gets complaints for excessive rudeness, she is much more successful than she ever was imitating Leslie.
* CharacterDevelopment: Her character arc starts in earnest in season four and continues into season five as she realizes that she can't be a complete jerk to everyone and attempts to actually make a career.
* TheCynic: And ''how!''
* DareToBeBadass: She encourages Andy to pursue his dreams.
* DeadpanSnarker
* DefrostingIceQueen: April starts to open up in season two.
* {{Dismotivation}}: She and Ron get along well.
* DrivesLikeCrazy
* EmbarrassingMiddleName: April ''Roberta'' Ludgate-Dwyer.
* EmbarrassingNickName: Her parents call her "Zuzu".
* EmotionlessGirl: Up to 11.
* FagHag: Until midway into season two, she constantly hangs out with her "gay boyfriend" and his boyfriend.
-->'''April:''' Derek is gay but he's straight for me but he's gay for Ben and Ben's really gay for Derek. And I hate Ben.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Melancholic
* FourthDateMarriage: Married Andy after dating a month.
* GrowingUpSucks: Firmly believes so, as demonstrated in "Jerry's Painting".
* HappilyMarried: To Andy.
* {{Hipster}}: Of course, with her [[DeadpanSnarker snarky]] [[SugarAndIcePersonality attitude]]. Her favorite band is Music/NeutralMilkHotel, and aside from that, she only listens to [[NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly German Death Reggae]] or [[PostModernism Halloween sound effects records from the 1950s]].
* IfItsYouItsOkay: Says she would hit Leslie-as-beautiful-topless-centaur-Greek-goddess in "Jerry's Painting".
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold
* LargeHam: Whenever she acts in-show, like when she pretended to be a rich, vampish widow at a bar.
* [[ManChild Woman Child]]: Among other examples, she buys toys instead of household items at Bed, Bath and Beyond.
* TheMatchMaker: Much to her own dismay, she finds herself helping couples get together. April is the one who pairs up Tom and Ann, much to her regret as they annoy her later with their relationship problems. She also tries to set up Chris, still sad from breaking up with Jerry's daughter, with Andy's female studies professor. She ends up sleeping with Ron instead.
* MoralityPet: Andy in a way has helped in her gradual defrosting. Notably her time with him leads her to reject her two gay boyfriends due to being annoyed by how artificial their hipster ways were.
* NightmareFetishist
* OddFriendship: She is quite close with Leslie despite them having completely opposite personalites. Her initial friendship with Andy in season 2 could also count, however after [[FourthDateMarriage they get married]] they become more TheOddCouple.
* OppositesAttract: With Andy.
* PetTheDog: Guilty over [[BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor successfully wishing misfortune upon Chris]] in "Bowling for Votes", she offers to take him to the movies with her and Andy with the tickets she won in the donation phone pool.
** Literally in season three. Andy and April adopt a three-legged dog named Champion. She adores him, states he's one of the few things she cares about, and eventually admits that helping homeless animals get adopted is one of the few things that could get her passionate about a boring, administrative job.
* ProfessionalSlacker: About as literal as possible:
-->'''Ron''': I don't care that you text all day and sleep at your desk. In fact, I encourage it.
* SarcasticConfession: In her words: "The truth is stupid. I only tell the truth when it makes me sound like I'm lying."
* SassySecretary
* PutOnABus: The possibility is toyed with in season three, where Chris offers to take her back to Indianapolis with him to be his assistant.
* ShouldntWeBeInSchoolRightNow: Similar to Ann's OneHourWorkWeek. April is a college student, but this isn't mentioned very often and she never seems to have to be in class, which would seem to indicate that whatever college she's attending is close enough for her to be at the office so often during the day.
** In [[AllInTheManual The manual]] ''Pawnee: The Greatest Town In America'', April says she only takes one course a semester at Pawnee Community College.
* TheSnarkKnight
* SpicyLatina: She acknowledges the trope while averting it with extreme prejudice.
-->'''April:''' My mom's Puerto Rican. [[BlatantLies That's why I'm so lively and colorful]].
* SugarAndIcePersonality
* ThatMakesMeFeelAngry: She has a tendency to blurt out her feelings - "I'm bored!" or "I'm cranky!" Her facial expression barely changes, however.
* TricksterArchetype: Enjoys being pointlessly contradictory and playing pranks. Might have something to do with a particularly ruthless [[TheGloriousWarOfSisterlyRivalry Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry]].
* [[WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes Why Did It Have to Be Spiders?]]: She has that [[BuffySpeak arachnocornucopia thing?]]
* WillTheyOrWontThey: With Andy during the second season.
* YaoiFangirl:
-->'''April:''' I passed up a gay Halloween party to be here. Do you know how much fun gay Halloween parties are? Last year I saw three Jonas Brothers make out with three Robert Pattinsons. It was amazing.

!!Andy Dwyer [-(Chris Pratt)-]
[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/andy_dwyer_9257.png]]
->''"I just wrote a new song, okay? Bottom line, it's called 'Sex Hair'. It's about how you can tell when someone just had sex 'cause of how their hair gets matted up in the back. It's awesome."''

Andy was introduced as Ann's idiotic musician boyfriend in the first season and originally intended as a temporary character. He was kept on in the second season after Ann broke up with him and landed a job as a shoe-shiner at City Hall. He had a WillTheyOrWontThey relationship with April in the second season. In the third season, he and April married after having dated for less than a month, much to Leslie's horror. Since then, their marriage has proved [[HappilyMarried surprisingly stable]]. At the start of season four, Andy leaves his shoe-shiner job and joins the Parks Department.

* {{Adorkable}}: Despite being a stereotypical jock, Andy shows elements of this from time to time, especially when he morphs into his [[ClarkKenting alter-ego]] "Burt Macklin of the F.B.I." whenever a situation requires the presence of law enforcement. He also likes to re-enact scenes from action movies and it is discovered in one episode that he made a ''bucket list'' of all of the things he would like to do once in his life before he dies.
* AuthorCatchphrase: He mentions that he uses the lines "spread your wings and fly" and "you deserve to be a champion" in all of his songs. The first lyric at least can actually be heard in the [[http://www.scarecrowboat.com/downloads.shtml studio versions]] of most of his songs.
* BetaCouple: With April after they become a couple.
* BreakoutCharacter
* BuffySpeak
* CaptainObvious
* CharacterDevelopment: Andy morphed from something of a jerk in Season 1 to a lovable doofus in Season 2.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Mostly in Season 4 and after, comes with being TheDitz. It's not normal for someone to dedicate a whole episode's investigation just to find who threw the pie at Jerry in Bus Tour. That's just one of many examples.
* TheDitz:
--> '''Andy''': Leslie, I typed your symptoms into the thing up here and it says that you might have... Network Connectivity Problems.
** [[spoiler: GeniusDitz: He's the first one ever to get a 100 on the written part of the Police Academy exam, but completely fails the personality test]].
* DoesNotUnderstandSarcasm:
-->'''April''': I'll go too.\\
'''Tom''': Really? 'Cause an hour ago you told me you'd rather watch a sex tape of your grandparents.\\
'''April''': Shut up! I don't have anything else to do. Do you want help or not?\\
'''Tom''': All right, see you guys later. ''[leaves]''\\
'''Andy''': I think that it's really, really sweet that your grandparents still make love.
** In another episode, Andy and Tom are escorted to the archiving room by an extremely old woman. As soon as she leaves, Tom jokingly tells Andy to remind him to ask her where she was when Lincoln got shot. Andy makes sure to write it down.
** This becomes rather ironic when he gets together with [[OppositesAttract April]], who is absolutely the most [[DeadpanSnarker most sarcastic and snarky]] character on the show.
* FakeGuestStar: In the first season, Chris Pratt was credited as a guest star despite appearing in every episode. They did shuffle back and forth on putting him in the opening titles during the first season, but nevertheless he was consistently referred to as a guest star. From the second season onwards, he was credited as a normal regular.
* FeigningIntelligence: Andy has tried to sound smart on several occasions, and failed spectacularly every time.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Sanguine
* GlobalIgnorance:
** In the same episode, he says Venezuela is both "across the pond" and a city in Mexico.
** He thinks that the states that form the Four Corners are Utah, Arizona, Colorado, and Oregon.
* HappilyMarried: To April.
* {{Jerkass}}: In season 1. He grows out of it.
** NiceGuy: While his stupidity can still lead to awkward situations at times, Andy overall becomes a very likeable and well-meaning person after his CharacterDevelopment, and is generally friendly to everyone except [[ButtMonkey Jerry and Kyle]].
* LiteralMinded: Leslie commissions him to write a song for Li'l Sebastian's funeral that's "5000 times better than '[[EltonJohn Candle in the Wind]]' ". Andy writes a song titled "5000 Candles in the Wind".
* [[ManicPixieDreamGirl Manic Pixie Dream Guy ]]: Andy is one of these to April.
* ObliviousToLove: Towards the end of Season 2, it becomes clear that this is at least partially an act due to the age difference making Andy uncertain.
* OddFriendship: He spends a lot of time with Ben and Tom in later seasons.
* OppositesAttract: With April.
* ParentalSubstitute: Ron is a pretty straight example, while Leslie is a bit of this and a CoolBigSis to him.
* ShipperOnDeck: In season five Andy tries to set up Ron and a local woman named Diane.
* StalkerWithACrush: In the first part of season two, Andy ''lives in a ravine'' near Ann's house to "protect" her.
* TookALevelInKindness: His evolution into a more likable person during the second season. There was some of this in the first season too, particularly in one episode where he goes out of the way to clean the house (and himself!) as a surprise for Ann while impaired by his cast.
* WillTheyOrWontThey: With April during the second season.

!!Ben Wyatt [-(Adam Scott)-]
[[quoteright:316:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ben_wyatt_4761.jpg]]
->''"Well, you have to be able to make decisions like this, Leslie. You have to be harsh, you know. No one's going to elect you to do anything if you don't show that you're a responsible grown-up."''

A state auditor who comes to Pawnee with Chris to evaluate the town's funds at the end of the second season. Promoted to series regular in the third season. He is blunt and cynical, but has a FreudianExcuse.

* {{Adorkable}}: Makes occasional references to sci-fi movies and corrects Tom when he gets them wrong.
-->'''Ben:''' They would never cancel ''GameOfThrones''. It's a crossover hit! It's not just for fantasy enthusiasts. They're telling human stories in a fantasy world. Fill out the forms, please.
* AsideGlance: Ben is the king of this.
* BaitAndSwitchTyrant: Served this role in his initial appearance, wherein his cynicism and designation by Chris as the BearerOfBadNews made Leslie seem him as the "bad guy". This very quickly changes though.
* BearerOfBadNews: Chris often forces him into this position.
* BerserkButton: Any mention of him as a mayor when he was 18 years old is bound to set him off.
* {{Bishounen}}: Leslie starts thinking of Ben as this after they start dating:
--> "I should listen to you always, because you are a man genius with a taut, narrow frame like a sexy elf king!"
* BiTheWay: When going off on a talk show host, he can be heard saying, "Everyone has gay thoughts!" Although he may not completely fulfill the trope, since said talk show host was heckling and flustering him into saying several embarrassing things.
** So, [[IncrediblyLamePun not a straight example]]?
* BreakoutCharacter
* BrutalHonesty
* TheComicallySerious
* TheCynic: Though he's getting better, thanks to Leslie and Pawnee in general.
* FacePalm: Ben's typical reaction to Pawnee, its citizens, and his own personal disasters.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Melancholic
* [[spoiler: HappilyMarried: To Leslie as of mid season 5.]]
* HollywoodNerd: Definite Type II. [[spoiler: Shauna Malwae-Tweep and Marlene Knope-Briggs]] certainly agree.
** One of his interests is ''Franchise/StarTrek'', which is made funnier by the fact Adam Scott had [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8pQm3h2opc&feature=youtu.be&t=2m21s a brief appearance]] in ''Film/StarTrekFirstContact''.
* ImprobableAge: Was mayor of a town at 18. A caller to the Ira and the Douche radio show lampshades this in the most offensively unintelligent way possible:
-->'''Caller:''' Seems like 18 is pretty young for a mayor. What were you, like, 12?
* InSeriesNickname: Ben accumulates a lot of these in his short time in the series ("Mean Ben", "Turd Boy", "Human Disaster", "Calzone Boy", "Nerd", etc). In fandom, "Human Disaster" especially has grown to almost meme-ish proportions.
* IResembleThatRemark: A RunningGag with Tom is Tom will make some kind of geek insult about Ben, with Ben to respond indignantly at being called a geek with an even geekier answer. For example, Tom insulting that Ben wants to take a hobbit tour of New Zealand, and Ben responding that he did not care for Peter Jackson's adaptation.
* NiceGuy: Once you get past the BrutalHonesty and [[TheCynic pessimism]], Ben is easily one of the nicest and most reliable characters on the show, not to mention being the OnlySaneMan most of the time.
** He's also one of the few, if not the only character, to have never made fun of Jerry. Even other [[NiceGuy Nice Guys]] Chris, Andy, and Leslie can't say that.
* NoSocialSkills
* OddFriendship: With Tom. They probably couldn't have been more dissimilar. Though this might apply to Ben and Chris as well.
** He recently [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything "came out"]] that Larry is his friend and the others shouldn't be so mean to him.
* OfficialCouple: With [[spoiler: Leslie]].
* OldShame: Bankrupting his hometown during his stint as teen mayor when he built an expensive winter sports center. When it's brought up by Ira and the Douche in "Media Blitz", it absolutely ruins his composure.
* OneSteveLimit: Is an aversion. Ben was previously the name of one of April's boyfriend's boyfriend.
* OnlySaneEmployee
* OnlySaneMan
* OppositesAttract: [[ShipTease Teased]] with Leslie.
** In later episodes, they're actually shown to have incredibly similar qualities as well, and the [[ShipTease ship tease]] has been dialed up to all-out [[UnresolvedSexualTension UST]].
* PromotionToOpeningTitles
* RedOniBlueOni: The Blue to Chris's Red.
* SavvyGuyEnergeticGirl: Savvy guy to Leslie's energetic girl.
* SharpDressedMan: In a sleepy midwest town, he definitely stands out.
* StraightMan: He is easily one of the most sensible characters on the show.
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: He kind of replaces Mark. He doesn't have the same job, but he acts as a foil/possible love interest to Leslie in a similar way.
** By the end of the third season, however, Ben is definitely his own character. [[http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/showtracker/2010/03/parks-and-recreation-mike-schur-talks-about-why-paul-schneider-is-exiting-the-show-plus-more-details.html Also, according to creator Michael Schur]], even though Ben was brought in with the idea that he might be a love interest/foil for Leslie, he was hesitant to label Ben that, reasoning that they hadn't shot a single scene with the two of them yet, and implying that, like Andy/April, there needed to be chemistry for it to work.
** He's undeniably replaced Mark as the show's "straight man" though.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: Calzones, which earns him no end of derision from everyone he knows. Although he may abandon his beloved calzones after he a ''devastating'' case of food poisoning in "Ann's Decision".
* WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes: He's afraid of cops and in "Dave Returns" has to interact with a lot of them.
* WillTheyOrWontThey: With Leslie. Oh my ''God''.
* TheWoobie: Becomes this in-universe(and to some viewers) when Donna takes him on her and Tom's annual "Treat Yo'self Day" after seeing him outside at lunch:
-->'''Donna:''' Oh lord. Is he eating soup on a bench? Alone?
** His Woobieness increases later that day when he buys himself a Batman costume to wear as his version of treating himself and begins to weep, his sadness over the breakup of his secret relationship with Leslie finally coming out.
-->'''Donna''': Uh oh. Batman's crying.

!!Chris Traeger [-(Rob Lowe)-]
[[quoteright:325:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/chris_traeger_8893.jpg]]
->''"I take care of my body above all else; diet, exercise, supplements, positive thinking. Scientists believe that the first human being who will live a hundred and fifty years has already been born. I believe I am that human being."''

Ben's partner, opposite and [[HeterosexualLifePartners Heterosexual Life Partner]]. He is cheerful and optimistic, but, in an effort to be liked, he always forces Ben to be the messenger for any bad news. Chris is also a health nut. In season 3 the mayor of Pawnee asks him to fill in for the city manager who's recovering from a heart attack.

* TheAce: Donna even calls him the Bionic Man.
** BrokenAce: He's a hypochondriac, and is shown to be unable to cope with the idea of being unhappy and his ultra-positivity often makes him unintentionally a jerk to others (i.e. his behavior toward Ann and Jerry, as well as designating Ben the BearerOfBadNews).
* ActorAllusion: Shown in "Campaign Ad" to be a Japanophile, much like his role in ''ThankYouForSmoking''.
* AmbiguouslyBi: Maybe a bit much, but it's been repeatedly shown that he's flattered rather than uncomfortable by male attention.
* BearerOfBadNews: But as shown below, he usually leaves that to Ben.
* BreakoutCharacter: He was originally only intended to appear in the last two episodes of season 2 and the first six episodes of season 3. However, after the positive critical reception of the character, Rob Lowe signed a multi-year contract and became a main cast member for several seasons.
* CatchPhrase: One of his strategies for making Ben seem like the bad guy instead of him involves variations of this:
-->''[character complains about X]''\\
'''Chris''': Well, that's terrible! Is there anything we can do about that, Ben?\\
'''Ben''': Uh, no.\\
'''Chris''': Damn! ''[hastily leaves the scene]''
** SubvertedCatchPhrase: Chris tries to use this once, but then he realizes Ben isn't in the room.
** "Ann Perkins!"
** "This character page is LITERALLY the best tvtropes page I have ever seen"
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: To the point of using a far too opaque fengshui metaphor to break up with Ann.
* ChosenConceptionPartner: When Ann goes looking for a sperm donor to father he child, she eventually chooses Chris. But after they get back together, they wind up making a baby the old fashioned way.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Sanguine
* FullNameBasis: He greets everyone by pointing at them and saying "Hey, !"
* GivingSomeoneThePointerFinger: It's part of his usual greeting, but it's also what he does when he meets someone for the first time. It can be off-putting.
-->'''Ron:''' Hello, gents! Ron Swanson. ''(reaches for a handshake)''\\
'''Chris:''' ''(point)'' Ron... Swanson.\\
''(beat)''\\
'''Ron:''' Okay.
* HollywoodToneDeaf: Revealed to be this in "Dave Returns". He doesn't know the words for "Take Me Out To The Ball Game" either.
* {{Hypochondria}}: An extension of being born with a blood disease.
* LawfulStupid: Comes down with a case of this when he zealously prosecutes Leslie due to her romantic relationship with her superior, Ben, despite knowing that Ben would never give anyone any kickbacks and that Leslie would never ask for or take them. His apology after the end of the trial implies some inner turmoil over whether ToBeLawfulOrGood, at least.
* TheMatchmaker: He expresses a fondness for this in 'Jerry's Painting' and endeavors to set Ben up with someone. Played for irony considered his new rules are actually keeping Ben from the one person he's interested in.
* MomentKiller: An indirect version in that his rules against relationships within the government are the only obstacle in Leslie and Ben's way, although he is unaware of this. There are straighter examples in "Road Trip" where (1) Ben confesses to Leslie at dinner; Leslie leaves for a moment to consult Ann and steels herself to go back and kiss Ben only to find that Chris has appeared and has seated himself at their table, and (2) Ben and Leslie get increasingly cute while watching TV together on the couch in Chris's hotel room and Chris keeps interrupting with his frequent bathroom trips.
* NiceGuy: While his overly cheerful personality sometimes leads to unintentional {{Jerkass}} moments, Chris is overall a very well-meaning guy who implements a health initiative out of a genuine desire to improve the health of the citizens of Pawnee. He is also friendly and polite to almost everyone. An excellent example of his niceness occurs during Ben's bachelor party when he finds out none of the other guys got to have their own bachelor party for various reasons. His response? [[spoiler: He gives everyone the perfect bachelor party they never got to have]].
* OfficialCouple: With [[spoiler: Ann]] as of season 5.
* OlderThanTheyLook: He's 44. The most common in-universe estimate is 25.
* ThePollyanna: So positive, he scares off Oren, the creepy and morbid Goth at April and Andy's wedding.
** When he was born with a deadly, rare blood disease, the doctors told his parents he would only live for a few months. That's why he is so positive!
* PromotionToOpeningTitles
* PureIsNotGood: His exceedingly healthy body, which he compares to a finely-tuned microchip, is more than once played as a weakness. When he catches the flu it hits him like a truck.
-->'''Chris:''' Stop... pooping.
* PutOnABus
* RealMenWearPink: His pink shower cap (from a breast cancer awareness triathlon), and he even has a leg razor. Chris sees none of this anything to be ashamed of.
** He also doesn't see kissing Ron on his birthday as anything strange.
* RedOniBlueOni: The Red to Ben's Blue.
* SarcasmBlind:
-->'''Chris:''' It is exactly because of that lewd photo that I am here. [...] If I could go back in time and cut your eyeballs out, I would.\\
'''April:''' Wow, that is so sweet.\\
'''Chris:''' Thank you.
** Although in a later episode he seems to understand that Ann is using sarcasm, but not that it's meant as a jab at him.
* SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan: The sensitive guy to Ron's manly man.
* StepfordSmiler:
** In "The Trial of Leslie Knope", he's so anxious and depressed about Leslie's trial that he loads up on herbal remedies to the point of, as Leslie puts it, "radiating happiness".
** Later episodes show that he actually has ''crippling'' issues about his mortality that he barely manages to cover up. It's really the only reason he's such a health nut. He begins spiraling into depression when his unrequited feelings for Ann make him wonder if he'll just end up alone.
* TerrifiedOfGerms: During flu season:
-->'''Chris:''' ''(increasingly frantically)'' I have to get out of here. I have 2.8% body fat. My body's like a microchip. A grain of sand could destroy it. My body's a microchip. ''(leaves)''
* ThereAreNoTherapists: Averted! He starts seeing a therapist in season five and it does him a world of good.

!!Garry "Jerry"/"Larry" Gergich [-(Jim O'Heir)-]
[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/JerryParks_7024.png]]
->''"Well, you know it's like I always say, 'It ain't government work if you don't have to do it twice.' "''

A middle-aged ButtMonkey who has worked in the Parks Department since the 1970s. He's picked on by everyone, particularly "mean" characters like Tom and April, but also by "nice" characters like Leslie. He is regarded as a boring, out-of-touch loser, but actually seems to have his personal life squared away better than anyone else.

* AccidentalMisnaming: In "The Trial of Leslie Knope", it's revealed that his name is actually Garry:
-->'''Jerry''': On my first day here, the old director, he called me "Jerry" and I just didn't think I should correct him.
** Actually if you look you at his ID card in the previous episode his name Garry is [[FreezeFrameBonus clearly visible if you look closely.]]
** MaliciousMisnaming: At the start of the sixth season, April effectively changes his name to "Larry Gengurch". He's been known exclusively as "Larry" ever since. Even NBC's website now recognizes him as Larry Gengurch!
* BeneathTheMask: Recent episodes have shown that it's actually quite difficult to keep his upbeat attitude at the office in light of all the abuse he takes, which may lead to some of his clumsiness.
* BiggusDickus
-->'''Dr. Harris''': That man has the largest penis I have ever seen. I actually don't even know if he has mumps, forgot to look. I was distracted... by ''the largest penis I have ever seen''.
* ButtMonkey: He gets yelled at and demeaned by ''everyone'' in the office, to the point where he's basically this show's version of [[Series/TheOfficeUS Toby]].
** [[InvertedTrope Inverted]] when he's at home, where he inexplicably morphs into TheAce.
* CatchPhrase: "Oh jeez..." whenever someone yells at him for doing something wrong. Which happens pretty much all the time.
* TheChewToy
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Phlegmatic
* HappilyMarried: To his wife Gayle.
* ImpossiblyTackyClothes: Something Tom likes to make fun of him for.
* LeapDay: His birthday, naturally
* NiceGuy: Despite being constantly dumped on by his coworkers and by the universe in general, Jerry doesn't have a mean-spirited bone in his body.
* ObliviousAdoption: Had no idea he was adopted until a coworker who looked up his background mentioned that his adoptive mother had been arrested for marijuana possession... Jerry just said he didn't know he was adopted.
* OlderThanTheyLook / YoungerThanTheyLook: Oddly combined in that Jerry is supposed to be 64 as of the fourth season (the episode "Sweet Sixteen" references his LeapDay birthday), and of course has a lot of InformedFlaw in terms of his appearance, but Jim O'Heir is only 50- in fact, he's eight years younger than Christie Brinkley, who was cast as Jerry's [[UglyGuyHotWife wife]].
* PhraseCatcher: "Dammit, Jerry!"
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: Along with Donna, after Chris and Ann left
* TheScapegoat: Everything is Jerry's fault.
* SelfDeprecation:
** In "Jerry's Painting" he tells Leslie that allowing the painting to be destroyed is something ''he'' would do, and that he didn't expect her to give in.
** A comedic example in "The Bubble": Chris says he believes Jerry is capable of so much more. Jerry's immediate reply is a flat "I'm not."
* TenMinuteRetirement: Retires at the end of the fifth season, but is brought back part-time of the end of the same episode. He returns to the parks department full-time in the sixth season.
* TheUglyGuysHotDaughter: His daughter Millicent.
** His two other daughters [[http://cdn.uproxx.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/parks-650x376.jpg count as well]].
* UglyGuyHotWife: His wife Gayle is played by [[http://imageshack.us/a/img824/7/christiebrinkleypicture.jpg Christie Brinkley]].
** Turns out she wasn't the physical type that [[http://www.nbc.com/parks-and-recreation/video/jerrys-dream-bachelor-party/n31436/ attracts him]].

!!Donna Meagle [-(Retta Sirleaf)-]
[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Donna_8063.png]]
->''"We're not big on hospitality. The Meagles are a cold people."''

A SassyBlackWoman who is office manager for the Parks Department. Donna has expensive tastes as she apparently comes from a wealthy family (Ginuwine is her cousin, as revealed in "Sweet Sixteen"). Her most prized possession is her [[RunningGag Mercedes-Benz M-Class SUV]], which [[BerserkButton you better not mess with if you know what's good for you]]. She ReallyGetsAround and has had a variety of weird sexual exploits, which we mostly hear about in NoodleIncident format.

* AerithAndBob: Her brothers [=LeVondrias=] and George.
* BerserkButton: Do ''not'' touch her Mercedes.
* BigBeautifulWoman: Donna is most rotund character (next to Jerry) and it doesn't do any harm to her ability to attract men, being the character who goes through the most sexual partners.
* TheFashionista: She and Tom get along well.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Choleric
* ICallItVera: One episode reveals that she has named her Mercedes "MichaelFassbender" because "they're both German and they're both sexy as hell".
* [[KavorkaMan Kavorka Woman]]
* ThePreciousPreciousCar: Again, her Mercedes.
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: Along with Jerry/Larry, after Chris and Ann left
* ReallyGetsAround
* SassyBlackWoman
** Ironically enough, her actress' [[https://twitter.com/unfoRETTAble Twitter account]] specifically says "Don't call me sassy."

!!Mark Brendanawicz [-(Paul Schneider)-]
[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mark_brendanawicz_8975.jpg]]
->''"I hit rock bottom that night. I mean I literally fell to the bottom of a pit and hit a rock. I remember laying there thinking, 'There's probably a good reason why I'm down here.' And then I remember thinking, 'I need morphine.' "''

A city planner. StraightMan caught in a LoveTriangle between Leslie and Ann. He started off the series as a HandsomeLech, but this was quickly dropped and he spent most of his time on the show being a LadyKillerInLove. PutOnABus when he joins a private company at the end of season two.

* ButForMeItWasTuesday: Non-villainous example. Some years prior to the first season, Mark and Leslie slept together once. This was a ''very'' important event in Leslie's life and she imagines their working relationship has been filled with {{UST}} since. Mark sleeps with so many women that he barely even remembers it.
* TheCasanova[=/=]HandsomeLech: In the first season.
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Was essentially written out of the show after season 2 and hasn't even been vaguely alluded to since.
* [[FourTemperamentEnsemble Five Temperament Ensemble]]: Leukine
* CharacterDevelopment: In the second season, he began a steady relationship with Ann and remained faithful to her.
* TheGenericGuy: For two seasons, he stood in the middle of a cast of more interesting characters and acted sane. Which is what a StraightMan is obviously supposed to do, but many would argue that he just ended up being boring and unmemorable.
* LadyKillerInLove: How his CharacterDevelopment happened.
* PermaStubble
* PutOnABus: At the end of season two, Ann breaks up with him and he leaves the government to work for a construction company. Has elements of ChuckCunninghamSyndrome in that he's never mentioned again after he leaves, even when it would make sense for him to be mentioned. Seriously, Ann was with Mark longer than any other man she's dated on the show, but she didn't have a "Mark" box in "Halloween Surprise"? Also, Leslie and Ben struggle to find an architect for the Lot 48 park in "Pawnee Commons", apparently forgetting that Mark had already drawn up plans for the park and given them to Leslie in his last episode.

!!Supporting characters
* Related or married to main characters:
** Marlene Griggs-Knope [-(Pamela Reed)-]: Leslie's mother and "a big mucky-muck in the county school system". Has shades of [[MeddlingParents Meddling Parent]] and WellDoneDaughterGirl. Leslie's father has been [[DisappearedDad dead]] since she was ten years old, which was first implied in a throwaway line explaining that "he lives in Florida, in a cemetery" and later made explicit in the fifth season.
** Tammy Swanson "One" [-(PatriciaClarkson)-]: Ron's first wife. Makes her first appearance as the back of a head in the season three finale, [[TheDreaded which is enough for Tammy Two and Ron to drop everything and head for the hills]]. She works for the [[IntimidatingRevenueService IRS]]. Her influence can turn Ron into a dorky, pro-government HenpeckedHusband.
** Tammy Swanson "Two" [-(Megan Mullally)-]: The second of Ron's evil ex-wives. Not only is she also named Tammy, [[LikeParentLikeSpouse so is Ron's mother]]. This Tammy is a [[TheVamp Vampy]] ManipulativeBitch and the deputy director of the Library Department, the SitcomArchNemesis of the Parks Department. Her influence can turn Ron into a easily manipulable sex freak.
** Diane Lewis [-(Creator/LucyLawless)-]: Ron's girlfriend in season five. She is a middle school vice principal with two kids, Ivy [-(Rylan Lee)-] and Zoey [-(Sadie Salazar)-]. According to Leslie and Ron himself, she is perfect for Ron. They are married at the start of season six.
** Wendy Haverford [-(Jama Williamson)-]: Tom's wife at the start of the series. She is Canadian and married him to stay in the country, resulting in the {{Irony}} of an interracial CitizenshipMarriage where it's the white person who is trying to avoid being deported. They split up during the second season, in an episode appropriately titled, "Tom's Divorce". Ron dated her for awhile before she moved back to Canada near the start of the third season.
* The government:
** Ethel Beavers [-(Helen Slayton-Hughes)-]: A CoolOldLady who works in the dreaded fourth floor of City Hall and is also court stenographer.
** Jeremy Jamm [-(Jon Glaser)-]: City councilman, orthodontist and {{Jerkass}} extraordinaire who generally opposes everything Leslie does on principle. As of Season 6, while retaining his {{Jerkass}}ness, is also characterized as a lonely and pathetic man who desperately needs a friend.
** Bill Dexhart [-(Kevin Symons)-]: City councilman. An incredibly SleazyPolitician who is usually involved in some kind of sex scandal.
** Fielding Milton [-(James Greene)-]: City councilman since 1948. Mostly a source of RacistGrandpa jokes.
** Douglass Howser [-(Yvans Jourdain)-]: City councilman. Seems to be a StraightMan. A RunningGag involves Leslie running into him in awkward situations and her using the opportunity to try and talk about some issue.
** Ingrid de Forest [-(Creator/KristenBell)-]: A resident of the former Eagleton and Lesle's replacement on the city council.
** Dave Sanderson [-(LouisCK)-]: Leslie's boyfriend in season two. A bumbling cop. Their relationship is cut short due to Dave joining the Army Reserve and moving to San Diego, but he comes back in season four's "Dave Returns" and [[TheMissusAndTheEx awkwardly interacts with Ben]].
** Craig Middlebrooks [-(Billy Eichner)-] the CampGay former office manager of Eagleton's Parks dept. who transferred to the Pawnee dept. when the two towns merged. Has NoIndoorVoice and prone to ComicalOverreacting.
* The media:
** Joan Callamezzo [-(Mo Collins)-]: The vapid host of ''Pawnee Today'', a talk show frequented by the main characters. She likes Tom due to his flattery, but seemingly has a vendetta against Leslie. She's [[SmallNameBigEgo oddly arrogant for a local media star]].
** Shauna Malwae-Tweep [-(Alison Becker)-]: IntrepidReporter for the local paper. Usually, the Parks Department gives her access in the hope that she'll report something positively for them, but hijinks ensue and her story ends up with a negative, sensationalistic slant. In season five, Chris has a short-lived and ambiguously romantic relationship with her.
** Perderick "Perd" Hapley [-(Jay Jackson)-]: Host of ''Ya' Heard? with Perd''. [[VerbalTic Tends to speak]] [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment redundantly,]] in redundant sentences, that repeat themselves.
** Derry Murbles [-(Creator/DanCastellaneta)-]: Host of a public radio show which plays terrible music. Leslie has been a guest on the show a couple times.
* The Sapersteins:
** Jean-Ralphio Saperstein [-(Ben Schwartz)-]: Tom's partner-in-crime who is (even more) slimy and obnoxious. He's hilarious just from his hairstyle. Pretty much outright hated by Ron and Donna.
** Mona Lisa Saperstein [-(Jenny Slate)-]: Jean-Ralphio's "twin sister from the same mister" who he describes as (singing) "the worst person in the wooooorld" and also a "total klepto, nympho, and pyro". Tom hires her at his clothing rental business and ends up starting a relationship with her after attempting to discipline her results in a sexual encounter.
** Dr. Saperstein [-(Henry Winkler)-]: Jean-Ralphio and Mona Lisa's father. He finds his layabout offspring to be a huge disappointment.
* The Newports:
** Nick Newport, Sr. [-(Christopher Murray)-]: Former CEO of Sweetums, a candy corporation which owns half the town. Dies at the end of season four.
** Jessica Wicks [-(Susan Yeagley)-]: Nick's GoldDigger wife. Also a RichBitch.
** Bobby Newport [-(PaulRudd)-] - Leslie's opponent in the City Council race. A ManChild and UpperClassTwit.
** Nick Newport, Jr. [-(Gary Weeks)-] - Current CEO of Sweetums in season two. Father of Denver [-(Ryan Hartwig)-] and Dakota [-(Harley Graham)-]. As of season four, he seems to have been {{Retcon}}ned out of existence.
* Other
** Marcia Langman [-(Darlene Hunt)-]: A humorless right-wing Christian activist offended by everything. Often uses InsaneTrollLogic. The episode "Sex Education" introduces her husband Marshall Langman [-(Todd Sherry)-], who shares her views in spite of being obviously CampGay. (They're probably based on Michelle and Marcus Bachmann.)
** Dr. Harris [-(Cooper Thornton)-]: A doctor and a coworker of Ann's at the local hospital. An incredibly DeadpanSnarker with a [[DrJerk terrible bedside manner]].
** Li'l Sebastian: A miniature horse (more specifically, a [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shetland_pony Shetland pony]]) that did... [[NoodleIncident something]] that has endeared him to the residents of Pawnee. Later dies and is given a city-funded hero's funeral. Ron takes his death particularly hard:
-->'''Ron:''' When I walked in this morning and saw the flag was at half-mast, I thought 'alright -- another bureaucrat ate it.' But then, I found out it was Li'l Sebastian. Half mast is too high. ''Show some damned respect.''
** Brandi Maxxxx [-(Mara Marini)-] Local Pawnee Porn star who also ran for City Council against Leslie Knope and Bobby Newport. Admires Leslie and played her in "Too Big To Nail", an adult movie about Leslie saving the Pawnee Videodome.
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