Coronavirus: Amy Poehler jokes that Parks and Recreation predicted pandemic

‘SNL’ star picks out the two ‘Parks and Recreation’ episodes that are currently ‘a little close to home’

Louis Chilton
Thursday 26 March 2020 12:50
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Parks and Recreation: Flu Season episode

Parks and Recreation star Amy Poehler has joked that the beloved sitcom predicted the coronavirus pandemic.

In an interview with The Guardian, the former Saturday Night Live actor said: “There’s an episode where everybody in town gets the flu and I was thinking: ‘Oh boy, this is a little close to home.’”

The episode in question, season three’s “Flu Season”, sees some of the main characters come down with a particularly contagious strain of the flu.

Poehler also noted the prescience of another episode (”Freddie Spaghetti”), saying: “There’s a government shutdown. This woman stood up in a town hall meeting and said: ‘My children are getting out of school in two weeks. What am I supposed to do with them, keep them in my house where I live?’”

Parks and Recreation ran on NBC from 2009 to 2015, and followed the lives of a group of misfit employees at a local government department.

In the interview, Poehler also joked about what her ambitious alter-ego, Leslie Knope, would make of the current pandemic.

“Leslie would not do well with quarantine,” she said. “She’d probably go a little bananas.”

The Simpsons has been credited with predicting the virus as well, because of a nearly 20-year-old episode which saw an infectious disease travel from Asia to the US.

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