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The Parks & Recreation Character That Fans Feel Most Sorry For

Piggybacking off of the resounding success of the American take on "The Office," creatives Greg Daniels and Michael Schur got to work on another series that debuted in April of 2009: "Parks and Recreation." The NBC sitcom presented viewers with the inner-workings of Pawnee, Indiana's Parks and Recreation Department, throughout its seven seasons on the small screen. This premise brought with it tons of comedy, drama, and suspense, as well as more than a few unforgettable quotes and moments. Not to mention, it's absolutely packed with now-iconic characters that endure well past the show's 2015 finale.

From wide-eyed and determined lead Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) to the stern, dismissive Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman), just about everyone in the core cast of "Parks and Recreation" left their mark on the series during its television tenure. Although, just because these few individuals took priority doesn't mean they're all the program had to offer. Even much of the recurring cast managed to stand out and steal the spotlight here and there. Despite only appearing in a handful of installments at most, names like Councilman Jeremy Jam (Jon Glaser), Garth Blundin (Patton Oswalt), and more left lasting impressions on viewers — for better or worse.

Of the massive "Parks and Recreation" cast, one person stands out from the rest in the worst way. Fans can't help but feel especially sorry for this poor individual, and here's why.

Parks and Rec fans feel for Barney Varmn

Season 2 of "Parks and Recreation," specifically the episode "Leslie's House," featured the debut of who would become one of the most entertaining side characters to date. Barney Varmn (John Balma) works as an accountant for Tilton & Radomski Accounting and doesn't hide his deep-rooted love of puns based on his profession. However, his jokes typically fail to land due to his weak delivery and monotone voice. Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott), on the other hand, is much better at unloading his arsenal of corny accounting jokes, which Barney absolutely adores.

While Ben isn't necessarily rude to Barney during their interactions, he has upset him on quite a few occasions. Barney, who's visibly infatuated with Ben, constantly offers him a job at Tilton & Radomski, only for Ben to either turn him down outright or hold the position very briefly before leaving. According to a small "Parks and Rec" reunion panel from San Diego Comic-Con 2019, it's not uncommon for fans to approach John Balma in public and tell them how bad they feel for Barney (via Buzzfeed) — a sentiment that even extends to the show's Reddit community.

All in all, Barney Varmn is a well-meaning person that's locked in a dull job and just wants someone to crack jokes with, ideally Ben Wyatt. Considering how close he comes to living his dream before ultimately losing out, can you really blame people for pitying him?