1. Babies. Get ready for a baby–crazy season. The cliffhanger of last season—Diane’s big news for Ron—turns out as we thought it might: there’s a baby Swanson on the way. It’s unclear what the timeline of this season will look like, but here’s hoping that we get to see the formerly kid–averse Ron attempt parenthood. Chris and Ann play the happy, expectant couple, going around city hall and telling people the good news. Reactions range from apathetic to Jerry, who waxes poetic about breastmilk. Damn it, Jerry.
2. The Gang Goes to London. April secretly nominates Leslie for a women’s leadership award, which Leslie wins. The awards gala is held in London so the gang, of course, all head across the pond to support Leslie and see the sights. It’s a fun premise, with plenty of comedic gold to mine. Ron rants about the European socialists and attempts to use US money (“this is the greatest piece of paper in the world”), but is won over when Leslie plans him a trip to Scotland to taste whiskey. He leads sheep and is overcome with emotion. Ben and Andy meet an English nobleman about a charity project—and he turns out to be a better–dressed, megarich, funny–accented version of Andy (they crash toy helicopters and chase down geese). The scenes were masterful, so fortunately, Andy gets an offer to stay in London for three months to help with the charity project, which he takes. Expect a hilarious season of shenanigans from "Parks’" funniest character.
3. Leslie’s Funk. At the end of last season, Leslie’s adversaries in Pawnee introduced an effort to recall her from office. Their efforts continue, dimming Leslie’s relentless optimism and making her sour about government. During her acceptance speech in London, she refers to the people she works for in Pawnee as “pee–pee–heads.” But after a classic Swanson pep talk, she realizes her job is a thankless one and returns to Pawnee resolved to help people, even if it means picking up slugs in peoples’ front yards.
4. Tom’s Rival Revealed. We finally find out who Tom’s rental competitor is—not Jay–Z or LeBron, but the father of Jean–Ralphio and Mona Lisa, the conniving Dr. Saperstein (played perfectly by the wonderful Henry Winkler). Jean–Ralphio lied and said Tom took his idea for Rent–A–Swag, which prompted his father to start a flashier store to drive Tom out of business (Tom laments that he’s now not the “better–looking Zuckerberg, but the better–looking Winkelvoss”). Jean–Ralphio comes clean, but Doc still vows to drive Tom out of business.
5. What next? This hour-long special was a strong start for season six: plenty of laugh–out–loud moments and clever reintroductions to where we left off last season. Crumbs were dropped in this episode suggesting where some story arcs might go, and they feel promising. Some were hinted at clumsily, like when Ben and Leslie resolve to travel more, others more subtly, like the development of Leslie and April’s relationship. Regardless, there’s a lot to be excited for this season, which—as much as it pains me to say–will likely be "Parks’" last.