It was widely agreed that the Golden Globes’ co-hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were a huge success. Not much will better Poehler following Bill Clinton with the line, “That was Hillary Clinton’s husband!”
Fey, you’ll likely know all about, from Mean Girls to Sarah Palin – but what about Poehler?
If you don’t know her name, you may recognise her face. Poehler has been working with Fey since their days on the Chicago improv scene in the early 1990s – as well as appearing in Saturday Night Live with her. At one point, the pair were co-hosts of Weekend Update, SNL’s most famous sketch – a regular spoof current-affairs slot. (Sample line: “engineers have fitted the internet in some cars, great news for people who wanted to use Google Earth to see themselves hit a tree”.)
Poehler has appeared in most of the works which made Fey famous too, including sitcom 30 Rock, the Sarah Palin sketch (she played Hillary Clinton) and movies Baby Mama and Mean Girls.
In the US, the pair share equal billing but over here, Poehler is much less well known. That’s possibly because the show that helped cement her name as one of the biggest in US comedy, the multi-award winning Parks and Recreation, has never been shown on British screens.
Parks and Rec has – alongside other critical hits The Office, Community and Fey’s 30 Rock – been a key part of NBC’s famous “Must See TV”, a Thursday night line-up of comedy – albeit all with small-ish ratings. The story of Poehler’s Leslie Knope, a mid-ranking bureaucrat in a city parks department, was created by two of the people behind the American adaptation of The Office (Greg Daniels and Michael Schur) and the New Yorker described it as “suggesting the brutality of politics better than many dramas”.
So why’s it not on over here? Well, good news for fans of classy comedies – Parks and Recreation (watch clip, below) is due to makes its UK TV debut on BBC4 this spring. Get your “Record Series” button at the ready.