Amy Poehler On Character Leslie Knoppe: ‘I’m A Lot Lazier Than Her’

Amy Poehler is one of the stars in the TV series “Parks and Recreation,” a quirky mockumentary featuring the small, fictional town of Pawnee, Indiana.

In the show, she plays Leslie Knoppe, a small-time bureaucrat, who who is currently running for city council against airhead rival Bobby Newport, played by Paul Rudd.

Like any typical small-time, mid-west town, Pawnee also has some…well, fringe candidates as well.

Last night’s episode of “Parks and Recreation” featured a debate between the candidates, in which the actress stated, “If I seem too passionate, it’s because I care.” In a recent interview about the show, Amy Poehler stated:

“Leslie has to kind of have a moment in the debate where she has to decide if she’s going to play politics or be herself. And it’s something she struggles with all the time on the show — how much should she be herself, and how much should she learn how to play the game? Sometimes she’s way too much herself, and sometimes she loses herself along the way.”

Thursday night’s episode saw the candidates in a comical debate, which almost descended into chaos. the show also previously featured a town festival, which comically doesn’t go right. These problems, though, only serve to celebrate the small-town desires and aspirations of each character. Poehler goes on to say that:

“Passion in politics is interesting and fun to play, because you can take big swings and you can make big mistakes. People see the slow time-release of presidential politics, and it’s a lot of manufactured passion, but it’s very controlled. In small, low-level politics, people really like to talk about their feelings. [The question is,] how passionate is Leslie? Does she keep at it if things don’t go her way? Can she remain optimistic in the face of pressure, or in the face of disappointment or opportunity?”

Did you see last night’s episode? How did you enjoy Amy Poehler’s performance in Thursday night’s episode of “Parks and Recreation?”