Nick Offerman may not have yet reached the level of “household name,” but the character he plays on “Parks & Recreation,” Ron Swanson, may have already reached that goal as “viral phenomena.”
For those of you not familiar, here is a great way to get to know Ron:
The character of Ron Swanson is basically a mixture of all things Midwestern and masculine combined with the magical dry delivery and dusting of goofiness, care of Offerman’s performance.
Swanson is the head of the eponymous “Parks & Recreation” department of the show and, appropriately enough, wants nothing to do with it. While the show is the epitome of ensemble casts, seriously there are no weak links, Swanson has definitely shone out as the grumpy Teddy/Grizzly Bear of the show.
It’s this quirky mix that has him inspiring websites like “Cats That Look Like Ron Swanson.”
Which Offerman has even commented on:
I mean seriously, who uses the word redolent? That’s awesome!
Swanson gets to bounce back and forth from being scary and mean:
to being a leader… of sorts:
Swanson spends one full episode in pursuit of a steak and, after repeated shutdowns, the episode ends on this note:
This is all to say that while the writing has created a character worthy of TV Legends, Offerman’s performance has lived up to it.
This should come as no real surprise as all the interviews I’ve been reading with Offerman highlight his real-life Swanson-like attributes, largely including the fact that he built his own canoe:
But what has been most impressive to me has been what I have read about his relationship with real-life wife, and sometimes special guest ex-wife on the show, Megan Mullally.
You probably remember her as Karen from “Will & Grace,” or her current role on “Children’s Hospital.” Or, let’s face it, any of another of the many roles she’s played. She’s also well-recognized within the theatrical community and, simply put, is a badass actress.
But this interview and it’s back and forth between the couple show a special side to Offerman, he really respects and loves his wife. Usually, I try to ignore the private lives of actors. However, in this situation it begs to be mentioned because of its awesomeness.
Take that and add it to the fact that he’s basically a real-life Ron that has replaced the over-the-top qualities with a refreshing realness and then add that the interview comes comes with this picture:
I think we’ve found the best Hollywood couple to hit the screens since Brangelina.
The show is in-between seasons so now’s a great time to catch up. As far as I know, it’s all up on Hulu.com.