Picks and Pans Review: Parks and Recreation

UPDATED 04/27/2009 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 04/27/2009 at 01:00 AM EDT

NBC, Thursdays, 8:30 p.m. ET/PT |

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A clear-eyed crazy on Saturday Night Live and in films, Amy Poehler often seems to be barely skating on reality. But she stays grounded in this deadpan mockumentary series from the team behind NBC's The Office. Leslie Knope is a local government official in Indiana with political ambitions grossly disproportionate to her intelligence. Poehler has the skills to pull off the role—Leslie is sweetly, credibly dumb—but this kind of sitcom needs to build slowly. For now the biggest laughs go to Nick Offerman as her boss, who hates government and thinks parks should be handed off to private enterprise.

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