Amy Poehler, Mark Rivers (composer), Mike Schur (
Parks and Recreation debuted this week 10 years ago and immediately took a place in all of our hearts. OK, fine, people were
preeeeettymixed on it until season 2, but then it took a place in all of our hearts.
Note: Spoiler warning for a 10-year-old TV show.
One of the most iconic moments in the show’s history was the funeral of town icon/miniature horse
Li’lSebastian — it perfectly summarized the show’s extremely earnest heart.
We interviewed star Amy Poehler, composer Mark Rivers, show co-creator Mike Schur, and writer Emma Fletcher about the enduring legacy of Li’l Sebastian — and the show. (You can also read our previous Parks and Recreation oral history on Galentine’s Day right here.)
HOW CHRIS PRATT’S ANDY DWYER MADE SUCH TERRIBLE BUT COMPETENT SONGS
Mark Rivers started playing in Boston rock
bands,but ended up working as a comedy writer. He used his songwriting for shows like Mr. Show and Human Giant — where he met Aziz Ansari.
Rivers: When they did Parks and Recreation, he recommended me for that gig. They needed somebody to write all the silly Mouse Rat songs, and I had done a bunch of weird comedy music.
Schur: We said, they’re a bar band. They’re not incredible musicians. But, the joke here isn’t ‘this band is terrible’ — they should be competent songwriters.
Rivers: They were like, they should be bad, but not musically bad. They should be bad taste bad. It should be
like s——- corporate rock.
Schur: I was sort of saying, it’s in the vein of late ’90s radio rock.
Rivers: So without listing any bands too specifically, we mentioned a handful of types of bands to get me in the right genre.