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The Best Ron Swanson Episodes Of 'Parks And Recreation'

Updated April 22, 2020 238 votes 43 voters 7.6k views15 items

List RulesVote up the episodes of 'Parks and Recreation' that show off the best of Ron Swanson.

The quintessential Ron Swanson episode of Parks and Recreation should feature at least one of the following: copious amounts of meat, stoicism, unbridled joy for a passion, and Duke Silver. Right off the bat, some of the best Ron Swanson episodes of Parks and Recreation are "The Fight," "Ron and Tammy," and "Eagleton."

"The Fight" Parks and Rec episode is a double whammy, because it showcases not only Ron’s simplistic and steadfast nature (Morton’s salt is one of the only products he endorses), but also his hilarious, giddy side. After "The Fight" first aired, there were websites literally dedicated just to showing drunk Ron dancing on a loop. Of course, "Go Big or Go Home" brought us the Ron Swanson Pyramid of Greatness, and the value of that cannot be undersold. 

The best part about Ron Swanson, however, is the soft and caring side, typically hidden by his strong and steadfast demeanor. Ron and Leslie have always had a tender, caring relationship. That’s what makes the aptly titled "Ron and Leslie" episode so special. Of course, no Ron Swanson episode list would be complete without Ron and Tammy. Whether you’re talking about Tammy 1, Tammy 2, or his own mother, Tammys certainly play an important part in Ron Swanson’s life. Read on below and be sure to vote up the your favorite episodes of Parks and Recreation that showcase Ron Swanson.

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  • 1

    94 Meetings

    94 Meetings
    Video: YouTube

    If there's one thing we know about Ron Swanson, it's that he prefers to keep his human interactions to a minimum. This is why April's top priority as his assistant is to prevent meetings from happening. But in the episode "94 Meetings," Ron learns that April has been scheduling all of his meetings for March 31st, a date she believed to be nonexistent. However, it does exist, so all 93 of his meetings land on a single day. 

    It's absolute mayhem, and it gives Ron plenty of opportunities to showcase his signature grumpiness. His attitude rubs off on April, who in turn, quits her job due to embarrassment from the error. But in a sweet twist, Ron convinces her to come back as his assistant, further strengthening their mentor-mentee relationship. 

    Best quote: "April was supposed to be the moat that kept the citizen barbarians away from Swanson castle. Instead, she blew up the castle and stabbed me in the face."

    • Original Airing: April 29, 2010
    • Season: 2
    • Episode Number: 21
    24
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  • 2

    The Fight

    The Fight
    Video: YouTube

    "The Fight" is one of the best episodes of Parks and Recreation for a number of reasons, and one of them is definitely Ron Swanson. In the cold open, Ron gathers all of his office mates, demanding to know who broke the coffee machine. They all start pointing fingers, and an argument breaks out. Of course, Ron was the one who broke the coffee maker, punching it in a rage, after it burned him.

    His monotone, passionless delivery of Tom's overzealous advertising script for Snake Juice - a bunch of alcohol mixed with sugar, coffee, and "some other junk" that "kind of tastes like Kahlua" - is hilarious. The fact that he only agrees to taste Snake Juice after Tom pledges to shave Jean-Ralphio's head if he doesn't like it, is even better. Of course, the cherry on top of this brilliant episode is when Ron, drunk off of Snake Juice, dances to Flo Rida's "Who Date Girl feat. Akon" while wearing April's little, black fascinator. It's a fan-favorite moment. 

    Best quote: "I predict ten minutes from now they’ll be at each other’s throats with war paint on their faces and a pig head on a stick. Good, it was getting a little chummy around here."

    • Original Airing: May 12, 2011
    • Season: 3
    • Episode Number: 13
    32
    11
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  • 3

    Indianapolis

    Indianapolis
    Video: YouTube

    A Ron and Leslie roadtrip is bound to be an interesting time. In Season 3 Episode 6, the duo travel to the Indiana Statehouse to receive a commendation for their revival of the Pawnee Harvest Festival. However, Ron is only concerned with visiting Charles Mulligan's Steak House. To his horror, he learns that the place has been shut down due to health code violations. 

    Chris tries to make it up to Ron by cooking a meal for everyone, but makes matters worse when Ron finds out the dishes are vegetarian. Rather than starve, Ron decides to gut it out and eat at a local diner. Upon being disgusted by the quality of steak offered at the diner, he asks the waiter to bring him "all the bacon and eggs" he has. It's an iconic - and oft quoted - Ron Swanson moment.

    Best quote: "Just give me all the bacon and eggs you have. Wait, wait. I'm worried what you just heard was, 'Give me a lot of bacon and eggs.' What I said was, 'Give me all the bacon and eggs you have.'" 

    • Original Airing: February 24, 2011
    • Season: 3
    • Episode Number: 6
    27
    7
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  • 4

    Leslie And Ron

    Leslie And Ron
    Video: YouTube

    Season 7 Episode 4 of Parks and Recreation pulls on the heartstrings. Leslie and Ron's rivalry has reached a head at this point, and both are locked in an office by the rest of the Parks gang until they can finally hash out their differences. With two people as opinionated as Leslie and Ron, that takes a while. Tensions are high, and without spoiling too much, things get very, very, heated. 

    But this episode is so incredible because it delves deep into the very nature of Ron and Leslie's work relationship, leaving no stone unturned. After everything that's happened between them, including Season 7's infamous rivalry, they finally reach a state of peace. At the climax of the episode, Ron reveals the real reason he quit his job at the parks department, and why he started acting out against Leslie's wishes. Make sure you have tissues on hand — this scene will make you cry. 

    Best quote: Ron: "Why do people eat anything besides breakfast food?"
    Leslie: "Because people are idiots, Ron."

    Original Airing: January 20, 2015

    Season: 7

    Episode Number: 4

    Director: Beth McCarthy-Miller

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