Break out the waffles, bacon and eggs: this one’s going to be emotional. On last night’s Parks and Recreation, Ann and Chris finally drove away from the feral racoons and obesity epidemics that plague Pawnee in order to raise their child in Michigan, where they will be closer to her parents and the water supply isn’t filled with sugar. As a result, “Ann and Chris” was a celebration of their time at the Parks Department, filled with insanely thoughtful gifts, surprise revelations, and heartbreaking goodbyes to their loved ones.
In honor of Ann Perkins and Chris Trager’s last day in Pawnee and Rashida Jones and Rob Lowe‘s last episode of the show, we looked back at all of the bittersweet goodbyes that they shared with the people they loved and worked with. It might not be much, but it’s pretty hard to out-Knope Knope. Get your tissues ready — or your gym bags filled with bras, knives and loose onions, whichever you prefer.
Ron and Chris
You know it’s a serious moment when Ron Swanson becomes physically demonstrative. His goodbye present to Chris? He shook the man’s hand. Twice. Sure, he also made him a stunning wood box for Chris to keep mementos of his son’s life, but the real gift was all in the handshake.
Our Feelings: Like a bronzed hamburger, it was both touching and symbolic of their relationship.
Ben and Ann
They may not have been incredibly close, but they love each other for making the people they love most happy. Plus, they’re always willing to share important tips for the proper care and keeping of Leslie and Chris. This week’s fun facts: Julie Andrews movies make Leslie hyper, and Chris gets cranky around lunch.
Our Feelings: Yeah, sure, it was sweet and all, but it was easily overshadowed by Chris’ magnificent dance moves. With the right attitude, literally every song can be a dancing song.
Andy and Ann
Hey, remember when Ann and Andy used to date? It’s cool, Andy just remembered too. He might be under the impression that she’s going to Mexico, but earlier in the evening he thought “Plates” was a person’s name — he gets a lot more leeway than most people when it comes to picking up on details.
Our Feelings: Considering the show his pretty much forgotten that Andy and Ann lived together, it was a touching tribute to the show’s first love story. You guys are the best.
Donna and Ann
When it came to the Pawnee dating pool, there were no two bachelorettes more eligible than Donna Meagle and Ann Perkins, and last night, they finally laid down their friendly rivalry for good, so that Donna can officially run that town. Ann even managed to give her a going-away present, by saving her from wasting her time with Stephen. Good looking out.
Our Feelings: Short, sweet, and full of affection. Just like Ann will never meet another Donna Meagle, Donna will never met another Ann Perkins.
Tom and Ann
It wouldn’t be a Tom Haverford goodbye without the physical act of him deleting someone from his phone, a rambling story about a nightclub, a backhanded compliment, and a quippy catch-phrase to wrap it all up. Luckily, Ann appreciates the genuine sentiment beneath all of the flash.
Our Feelings: A weird, rambling goodbye perfectly fitting for the weird, rambling relationship they shared. Stay golden, you two.
Jerry and Ann
Oh, Jerry. Despite giving one of the most heartfelt, genuinely kind speeches of the night, in which he told Ann that she was “kind, thoughtful, such a delight to have around” and that she’s going to be “an incredible mother,” she couldn’t have been less interested.
Our Feelings: It’s a good thing Jerry has such a loving family.
Ron and Ann
After interrupting Jerry’s goodbye, Ron admitted to Ann that he had enjoyed “parts” of their time together, reducing both Ann and Jerry to tears.
Our Feelings: We’re not crying, it’s just the smoke from this grill has gotten into our eyes. Ron was surprisingly open with his emotions this week, wasn’t he?
Andy and Chris
Only Andy would think the best last-minute going away present would be a Pawnee mug and a jacket Chris already owned. Hey, at least then you know he’ll like it, right? God, keep up, Larry!
Our Feelings: Well, you tried, Andy. And for that, both we and Chris are appreciative.
Donna and Chris
There is literally nothing more delightful than the joy with which Chris reacts to Donna admitting that she always thought he was hot. And no, we can’t blame her for copping a feel, either.
Our Feelings: A perfect end the the attraction that dare not speak its name. There was no way that Donna was gonna let this one go without making some sort of a move, and so, we salute her.
April and Chris
Although she could anticipate everything that he was going to say to her — he saw a lot of potential in her, it was a joy to watch her blossom, blah, blah, blah — it was still touching to see April be genuinely moved by Chris’ admission that he was proud of her.
Our Feelings: Sometimes, overwhelming positivity and unrelenting sarcasm balance each other out perfectly, resulting in a wonderfully bittersweet moment.
Perd Hapley and Ann
Tonight’s top story? Ann went on a date with Perd, a fact that both of them look back on fondly enough to make her appeal heartfelt enough to win him over. Although, from the sounds of it, Perd’s kind of a creepy date. Who introduces a kiss like it’s a news brief?
Our Feelings: The story of that moment was that it was surprising and weird, and our response to that weird surprise is to laugh uncontrollably.
April and Ann
Even though she spent the whole evening attempting to forcibly push Ann out of Pawnee, April couldn’t help but show some genuine affection for Ann, and even managed to grit the phrase “Iloveyoutoo” through gritted teeth. In exchange, Ann gave her the best gift of all, and didn’t force her to repeat it out loud. April’s gift? She didn’t carry out her original plan of framing Ann for murder.
Our Feelings: This was almost as awesome as the time they sang “Time After Time,” and since it was full of both love and open hostility, it was a wonderful ending for these two.
Leslie and Chris
They might be the most intense characters on the show, but they both let go of that intensity for a second and instead shared a quiet, tender moment. For Chris, Leslie is the second greatest person he’s ever had the joy of working with, and for Leslie, Chris is the only man who comes even remotely close to being good enough for Ann Perkins. If that’s not love, we don’t know what is.
Our Feelings: Leslie and Chris were never particularly close, so it’s fitting for them to end on the things that helped them bond: work and Ann. With one last, sad full-name-finger-gun, we salute you both, Leslie Knope and Chris Traeger.
Ben and Chris
After spending the entire night searching for the perfect gift to sum up his friendship with Chris, Ben finally found something that was his trademark mix of thoughtful and resourceful and recruited Ron and the rest of the guys to present Chris with a handmade memory box. They may have been forced together by circumstance, but the bond they shared was one of true friendship. Only Chris would remember 2008 as the year Ben went from being an auditor to a legend, and only Ben would drop everything in order to ensure that Chris gets the send-off he deserves. They are literally the best friends that either one of them will ever have, and their ending was the perfect mix of goofy and touching.
Our Feelings: We’re gathering up all of our tears in order to keep them in a wooden box. Figuratively, of course. Salt water will warp the wood.
Leslie and Ann
Sorry, Ben. There is only one person who is truly Leslie’s soulmate, and she is a perfect sunflower. There was no way that Leslie or the show would let Ann leave without an intense, yet thoughtful grand gesture, and she really delivered last night. In addition to 103 scrapbooks and a going-away party that’s actually 30 parties in one, Leslie had a surprise groundbreaking planned, to celebrate the project that first brought the two of them together. But when it seemed like the ceremony would fall apart, Ann hit back with a gift of her own, and got things done, even if that meant she had to put someone in a pregnant headlock to do so. The real treat of the episode, though, was Ann and Leslie, sitting alone in the park reminiscing about the good times they’ve shared and promising to always discuss Jennifer Aniston’s career. Because of Ann, Leslie became more patient, and learned that a tulip skirt just isn’t her shape, and because of Leslie, Ann got a lifelong friendship filled with extravagant tokens of affection and undying support. Oh, and she got that pit behind her house filled in. Friendship over.
Our Feelings: Is there a lot of Sarah McLachlan playing? Because things are getting pretty emotional over here. This might actually be the one sadness that breakfast foods can’t fix, but we’re going to eat a giant plate of waffles anyway to celebrate Parks and Recreation‘s greatest friendship. We’re going to miss you, Ann Perkins.