Fred Armisen: Sister City (S2E5)
Another good friend has travelled to Pawnee! Today Fred Armisen joins Rob Lowe and Alan Yang to reminisce on the fifth episode of season two. On "Sister City" Leslie hosts the P&R Department of Boraqua, Venezuela, Pawnee's sister city—while Tom becomes an errand boy and April plays hard to get. In today's episode find out what it's like to act on a show that isn't SNL, how long Fred was allowed to improvise in each scene, and the influence "Martin" had on Fred. All of this and a next level tip on doing impressions!
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The Pawnee Parks Department welcome their sister city Parks Department from Boraqua, Venezuela
headed by Raul Alejandro Bastilla Pedro de Veloso de Morana, the Vice-Director Ejecutivo del Diputado del Departamento de Parques, L.G.V.
(played by Fred Armisen).
Expecting the Venezuelan government officials to be poor/simple people, the Pawnee Parks Dept. is shocked to find their visitors wealthy, condescending, and offensive. The officials mistake Tom for a servant (which Tom plays along with for their large cash tips), assume Leslie’s proposed party includes sex with prostitutes, and disparage Pawnee at every turn.
The Venezuelan intern, Jhonny, falls hard for April, but she shows zero enthusiasm. While the rest of the delegates lust after Donna.
Meanwhile, the Venezuelans balk at the $35,000 Leslie is trying to raise to fill in the pit, and rub it in that Venezuela is a very wealthy oil-rich country. To try to earn back respect, Leslie takes the delegates to Pawnee’s nicest park (which Raul mistakes for the pit) and shows them democracy in action at a Townhall meeting (which devolves into all the citizens shouting at Leslie)
When Raul tells Leslie that she is weak and her city is disgusting, Leslie explodes in anger, insulting their uniforms and Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelans storm out.
Leslie apologizes and Raul offers Leslie a check for $35,000 for the pit project. Leslie reluctantly accepts, but just before the photo op, Raul convinces Leslie to say “Viva Venezuela” and “Viva Chavez” on camera, which with the help of April, Leslie realizes is actually propaganda for Raul’s “Committee to Humiliate and Shame America”. Furious, Leslie rips up the check,
prompting Raul to declare Pawnee no longer a Sister City and storm out.
Leslie vows to raise the money needed without them and inspired by Leslie, Tom secretly puts all of his Venezuelan tip money into the pit/park goal jar.
The episode ends with Leslie and Tom receiving an online video from April, telling them she and Donna are vacationing with Jhonny in his Venezuelan palace.