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Recap / Parks And Recreation S 02 E 05

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Leslie: Also, remember everyone. Venezuela is a poor country. These men are not used to the wealth and flash that we have here in central Indiana.

The Parks Department is to host a delegation from Pawnee's sister city, Boraqua, Venezuela. Leslie warns the staff that Venezuelans aren't used to the affluence of the United States, so they need to avoid being offensive. When the Venezuelans arrive, they think Tom is a servant, and though he is offended at first, he goes along with it when he receives large tips from them. The Venezuelans also think the women are for their choosing, and they all choose Donna.

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At a gathering for the Venezuelans, Leslie and her staff learn that the Venezuelans are very wealthy. The Venezuelans constantly put down Pawnee while incessantly praising how things are done in Boraqua. The Venezuelan intern Jhonny falls in love with April, who convinces him she is feared and very powerful. Both delegations exchange gifts representative of their towns. Raul, the leader of the Venezuelans, gives Leslie a gold-plated gun from Hugo Chavez. Leslie gives a bottle of Sweetums syrup and a bag of rubber nipples. Raul continues to insult Pawnee and America, and at first, Leslie thinks it's a language difficulty, but she resolves to stay civil.

Leslie tells the Venezuelans about her plans for the park in Lot 48. Raul explains that Venezuela is rich due to its massive oil reserves. Leslie decides to show them Pawnee's best park, but they insult it while bragging about their own parks. Leslie then takes them to a town meeting to show them democracy, but all she is able to demonstrate is angry citizens throwing insults and angry gestures at her. Raul is not impressed and wonders where the armed guards to take the protesters to jail are. When Raul tells Leslie they live like kings in Venezuela and answer to nobody, she finally loses her temper and explodes in anger, insulting their uniforms and Hugo Chávez. The Venezuelans storm out.

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Ron convinces her to apologize so they can do the photo-op. Leslie calls a meeting and apologizes to Raul, who in turn apologizes as well and offers Leslie a check for $35,000 to fill in the pit. Leslie fears it may be "dirty money", but accepts. During a photo opportunity later, Raul's team bring out a video camera to document Leslie saying "Viva Venezuela" and "Viva Chávez". Against her wishes, Leslie reluctantly does so. When Raul starts speaking Spanish to the camera, Leslie asks April to translate, and learns Raul is discussing his "Committee to Humiliate and Shame America". Furious, Leslie confronts Raul and tears up the check. Raul in response declares Pawnee is no longer the sister city of Boraqua. Leslie insists she will raise the money to build the park without them and Tom, inspired by her example, secretly puts all the tip money he made from the Venezuelans into the park donation jar.

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Leslie and Tom later receive an online video from April, who tells them she and Donna are vacationing with Jhonny in his Venezuelan palace, which is watched over by armed guards.

Tropes

  • Absentee Actor: Chris Pratt as Andy does not appear in this episode.
  • All Crimes Are Equal: Pawnee's sister city, Boraqua, Venezuela, jails everyone for everything, including over/undercooking meat, overpricing sweaters and flaking out on dentist appointments.
  • Banana Republic: The Venezuelan visitors run everything like a dictatorship.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Leslie, when she reaches the end of her rope, gives the Venezuelans an earful for being complete jerks.
  • Big Beautiful Woman: All of the Venezuelan visitors find Donna the most attractive woman in the department.
  • Bling-Bling-BANG!: The Venezuelans give Pawnee a gold replica gun. Ron doesn't like Chavez's policies, but he loves the gun.
  • The Cameo: Fred Armisen plays Raul, the leader of the Venezuelan delegates.
  • Jerkass: Raul and the Venezuelans are pigs who act condescending toward the Pawnee residents, making offensive remarks about the town and mocking the gifts Leslie gives them. They also treat Tom like an errand boy (he only goes along with it because they give him generous tips). It turns out that they're deliberately shaming and humiliating the Americans.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Tom is usually selfish, but when he's inspired by Leslie's resolve, he donates the money he got acting as the Venezuelans' errand boy towards the park fund.
  • Overly Long Spanish Name: Raul Alejandro Bastilla Pedro de Veloso de Maldonado.
  • Pet the Dog: Tom gives away the money he got acting as the Venezuelans' errand boy towards the park fund.
  • Rich Jerk: The Venezuelans throw money around and rub their oil wealth in peoples' faces. (This would later be quite the "Funny Aneurysm" Moment later on, as between the drop in oil prices and gross mismanagement, Venezuela would later be caught in a very dire economic position that's far from funny.)
  • Smug Snake: Raul, the Deputy Director of Boraqua's Parks and Rec Department, puts down Pawnee constantly and always brags about Boraqua's achievements. It irritates Leslie to no end.
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