Every Pawnee Citizen From 'Parks And Recreation' Definitively Ranked, Because This Show's Townspeople Were The Best

In celebration of the seven wonderful years we have spent in Pawnee, Indiana withParks and Recreation, I've decided to look back at the men, women, and various quadrupeds that have helped to color the town with such indomitable flavor. As much as we all love every Pawneean, it's only fair to pay homage to the show that we supply a complete ranking of the inimitable city's inhabitants.

From central characters like the Parks Department's chief players to the show's many one off loons, here's as all-encompassing an assessment I was capable of putting together without going totally insane.

(Note: In the spirit of Pawnee, all Eageltonians have been excluded from the ranking.)

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Derek, the guy Ben punched

Hands down the least likable fellow ever to earn written dialogue on Parks and Recreation. Grouchy, misanthropic, and sexist, and the only human being disgusting enough to muster an act of violence from the ordinary passive Ben Wyatt.

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Mona Lisa Saperstein

Oh, Mona Lisa. Jean-Ralphio described her best.

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Councilman Jamm

Too obnoxious to sustain tolerability through the mass of screen time he was afforded in Season 5.

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Andy Samberg yelling

I don’t even remember this character’s name. It’s a barely a character. It’s just… Andy Samberg… yelling.

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Sewage Joe

It should say a little something that he uses sewage puns to refer to his van, lifestyle, and women’s bodies.

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Justin

The greatest travesty of Justin isn’t his selfishness or manipulative nature, it’s that horribly asymmetrical hairline.

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Marcia Langman

Every misguided Tea Party pundit wrapped up in one frustrating package.

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Greg Pikitis

Lover of peaches and vandalism; responsible for some pretty nasty trickery, even for a suburban teenager.

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This guy

The only evidence that Pawnee territory extents to the Atlantic coast.

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Nick Newport Jr.

The smarmiest of the Newports. His dog is named Shoelace, for goodness’ sake.

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The malignant trifecta of former Parks Dept. heads

They vary in amount of jerk; Michael (far right) is easily the most forgivable of the bunch, while senile and sexist Clarence (left) and nature-hating jerk David (middle) duke it out for the top spot.

Marshall Langman

Marcia Langman’s equally ignorant, yet remarkably more stylish, husband.

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Tanya (of Sue's Salads)

Her life’s work is selling salads for goodness’ sake. She may as well be a criminal.

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Dr. Saperstein

Capable doctor, horrible father.

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Lawrence

He’s a total jerk to Andy and Leslie, but he does take care of his grandma, so…

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Councilman Dexhart

His saving grace was the terrific defense of his egregious extramarital affair: “It was my birthday, and I really, really wanted to do it.”

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Milicent Gergich

The whole Millie/Chris arc was kind of regrettable, and then she more or less disappeared. I guess Jerry’s home life is best left out of sight.

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Nick Newport Sr.

Old, rich, candy… that about covers it.

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Crazy Ira

Ira is next to nothing without his shock jock partner-in-crime.

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Janine Restrepo

Queen of the Zoning Board, and vigilant self-defender in the face of extortion.

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Councilman Milton

He’d likely be ranked the worst member on the council if you didn’t kind of pity him for his senility.

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Jessica Wicks

Not the brightest, kindest, or most moral citizen in Pawnee… but she sure is rich.

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Marlene Griggs Knope

Leslie’s difficult, but ultimately loving mother. She doesn’t show up as often as she used to, but maybe that’s for the best (her daughter needed a little breathing room, anyhow).

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Rita and Larry Ludgate

Somehow, the sweetest people in Pawnee spawned two of the most acerbic young ladies ever to grace the town. But hey, they don’t seem to disappointed!

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Shauna Malwae-Tweep

A diligent reporter for the Pawnee Journal. You’d think she’d be used to Leslie by now.

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The rarely seen members of Mouserat

You know, James, Mike, and Mark… from the background. They seem okay.

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Miriam and Gladys Gergich

If the only memory we have of Jerry’s other two daughters is the pictured breakfast chorus, then we’ll call their legacy a win.

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Dennis Feinstein

Say what you will about the man. He knows his scents.

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Paul Iaresco

Remember this guy? He was on the show for a while. Yeah. This guy.

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Wendy Haverford

What doesn’t make a lot of sense about Wendy is that she’d spend all that time in a fake marriage in order to get a green card, but then would high-tail it back to her native Canada on a whim.

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China Joe

Oh, poor China Joe…

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Kelly

Loving father; questionable decision-making skills (and taste in literature).

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Gayle Gergich

Jerry’s doting, loving, plausibly nearsighted wife. (Jokes aside, they’ve got a real sweet thing going.)

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Burly

Andy’s put-upon best friend, bandmate, and former benefactor. Impossibly patient.

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Natalie Ludgate

Addicted to Ritalin, has low self-esteem, and can’t find her gray hoodie. (Some of these characteristics may have been exaggerated by April.)

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Manrico Della Rossa

Impassioned, albeit dangerously eccentric, animal rights activist and politician. Don’t wear (or even touch) leather in his vicinity.

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Salvatore

He let the scissors do the talking.

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Mark Brendanawicz

Kinda wish you’d stuck it out now, don’t ya, Mark?

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Lavondrius Meagle

He might be on Donna’s bad list, but man does he make a wedding lively.

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Martin Housely

All-purpose emcee around town whose routine consists principally of outdated celebrity impersonations.

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Jean Ralphio Saperstein

Initially, a great source of occasional laughter, but he grew bothersome over time. We can’t cast Jean Ralphio out of our good graces altogether, but the rule of “less is more” applies to him better than any other running gag on the series.

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Derek and Ben

April’s boyfriend and April’s boyfriend’s boyfriend. The earliest of Parks and Recreation’s jabs at “hip” youth culture, which has since become the show’s second language. A little too sarcastic, but ultimately they’ve shown to be decent guys.

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Pistol Pete

A former god haunted by his indomitable past. A tragic hero in this most tragic of stories: that of the American dream.

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Tammy 0

A gentle reminder to call your mother.

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Typhoon

The only man imbued with enough hate to introduce Ron Swanson to enjoyable conversation. That’s saying something.

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Diane Lewis Swanson

Not many breathing humans can claim a toughness greater than that of Ron Swanson. As a high school principal and single mother of two (not to mention former Warrior Princess), Diane stands among these select few.

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Andy's awesome grandma

Deliverer of a definitively un-toppable wedding speech!

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Fester Trim

His pro-gun viewpoints might be a little bananas, but he has the best debate strategy out of any politician in Pawnee: “I don’t care about that question. Ask someone else.”

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Tom Haverford

The way we feel about Tom is the way Ann must have felt about Tom while dating him: there’s something nice in there, but damned if it’s not buried beneath a few dozen layers of annoying self-parody.

Still, he is responsible for some of Parks and Rec’s brightest gold. Just try and claim that you haven’t once accidentally ordered “chicky chicky parm parm” at a fancy restaurant.

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Councilman Howser

Though he’s the only levelheaded human being on Pawnee City Council, he finds himself a perpetual victim of Leslie Knope’s energized antics. Always funny.

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The Douche

Far more intelligent than his radio personality would betray… though still an undeniable sleaze bag.

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Joe

Donna’s incredibly understanding husband. Nicer than other people.

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Chris Traeger

Although Rob Lowe’s delivery was consistently spot on, Chris’ shtick grew tiresome and cloying. At times, it always felt like he was sapping more energy from the show than he was supplying to it. (But his dance scenes were always sublime.)

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JJ

There’s something of grave importance to be said for the claim to the greatest waffles in America.

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Mayor Walter Gunderson

We hardly knew ye… or your maniacal dog.

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Tammy 1

(Shudder…)

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Herb, head of the Reasonablists

For the leader of a prospering “end of days” cult, Herb is actually somewhat reasonable (especially about the scheduling of his religion’s apocalypses).

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Dr. Harris

The meanest person that Chris Traeger has ever met; lackadaisical Halloween costumer.

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Denise Yermley

Pawnee’s most bookable personality, and with pipes to boot!

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Ken Hotate

He might not have a ton of integrity, but he sure knows how to get one over on white people.

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Tammy 2

Among the more evil of Pawnee’s residents, and capable of some high-grade menace.

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Champion

Three legs. One dream.

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Police Chief Trumble

His one-shot interaction with Ben Wyatt (“What’s wrong with this guy?”) earns Pawnee’s now retired police chief a spot in the town’s hall of fame.

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The MRI guy

In the running for Leslie’s worst first date. Avid University of Wisconsin Badgers fan.

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Brett

Is perfectly willing to kill all the birds.

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Brandi Maxxxx

Self-starting adult film actress, producer, and politician, and a friend and ally to Leslie Knope in all movements… much to Leslie’s chagrin.

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Herman Lerpiss

I’m not really sure what to say about this guy… but whenever he’s on screen, I just want to know more

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Barney the accountant

If anyone can top Ben Wyatt in dorky charm, it’s the pun-loving Barney Varmn. But don’t tell him that — Barney would consider any slight against Ben practically sacrilege.

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Mel

Despite his assertions otherwise, Mel is indeed always up in arms about something (and in the best way).

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Donna Meagle

From a nondescript background character sprouted a fan favorite; the perfect mixture of the style and attitude injected into Tom with actual human behavior.

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Joan Callamezzo

The most powerful woman on Pawnee’s airwaves, and completely unfit to handle that power. Or her liquor.

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Lucy

Way cooler than anyone in Pawnee has a right to be.

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Bobby Newport

He means well.

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Harris

In his own words: Down to clown.

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Andy Dwyer

Andy, Andy, Andy. Oh Andy. Dear, sweet Andy. Lovable Andy. Dumb Andy. Dumb, dumb, dumb Andy. Oh… Andy.

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Dave Sanderson

Leslie’s lovably uncomfortable ex-boyfriend, trounced in lovability and discomfort only by Ben Wyatt.

Craig Middlebrooks

Okay, so one Eagletonian gets a pass. Craig, you had me at, “Who even are you?!”

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Orin

“He’s a genius.” - April Ludgate

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Garry/Jerry/Larry/Terry/Garry Gergich

What better way to celebrate the underdogs than with the underest of underdogs? A man whose very existence is proof of Murphy’s Law, Jerry is a testament to the very heart of Parks and Recreation’s story: There’s something special hidden beneath all the… well, all the Jerry. In short, Jerry is Pawnee.

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DJ Roomba

He knows what’s hot.

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April Ludgate

Watching April grow up has been an especially rewarding storyline for any Parks fan. The gradual frosting of her once impermeable icy facade has shown a character smarter, stronger, and more worthwhile than we ever might have thought.

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Kyle

Foodie, shoeshine obsessive, and victim of identity theft. Pawnee’s veritable everyman.

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Ben Wyatt

While Leslie is our bona fide hero, Ben was introduced to Pawnee as our entryway into her world. An outsider who has never known a true home, Ben finds this in his beloved Leslie and her wonderful town. Deep down, we’re all Ben Wyatts, wishing we could be Leslie Knopes, and feeling lucky enough to live the same world as those rare few.

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Ann Perkins

A drastically underrated character, and as much a foil to Leslie as Ben is. While he is introduced as man on perpetual pursuit of a home, Ann is on the same hot pursuit of an identity. Never quite knowing who she is until finding herself welcomed into the special little world of the Parks Department, Ann is a character whose value should never go unheralded.

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Perd Hapley

Our ranking of Perd lands him in the spot on this list at which point he currently sits, between the two parties immediately surrounding him.

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Ethel Beavers

The heart and soul of Pawnee’s local government. A fool for the charms of Mayor Gunderson, but hardly for those of Tom Haverford.

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Ron Swanson

In keeping with what we’d assume Ron’s wishes to be, we will refrain from saying anything about him here.

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The "Except for Turnip!" guy

Few American citizens bear the passion of the nameless chanter, who has rallied in favor of the preservation of his cat’s ashes and to spread the word about a fellow townsperson’s five-year-old daughter’s ostensible idiocy. A true hero.

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Leslie Barbara Knope

The antithesis to the cynicism that runs rampant through Pawnee’s City Hall, through contemporary network television, and through America on the whole, Leslie Knope is not just one of the finest characters on the show, but one of the most admirable heroines in TV comedy history. We’ll miss spending time with her week after week, and learning many a terrific lesson about national pride, friendship, and breakfast foods.

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Li'l Sebastian

Five thousand candles in the wind couldn’t illuminate the darkness that swept Pawnee, Indiana when it lost this gallant dreamer. Bye bye, Li’l Sebastian.

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