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The Parks And Recreation Scene That Fans Agree Won A Lot Of Sympathy For Jerry

The butt of many jokes on "Parks & Recreation," older Pawnee government employee Jerry Gergich's (Jim O'Heir) real name is revealed to be Garry in Season 4, but Jerry isn't some man of mystery like Don Draper. Garry is just so passive that he simply went along with the error when his first boss misheard his name as Jerry.

A sometimes incompetent worker within the town's Parks and Recreation department, Jerry is often mocked by his coworkers for his mistakes, recurring flatulence, and "boring" interests. However, Jerry is a warm and kind-hearted person, and occasionally employees like Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) and Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) realize they shouldn't mistreat him.

Thankfully, the joke is on them: Jerry has an incredible life outside of work, including an adoring wife, Gail (Christie Brinkley), three beautiful daughters, and a happy, comfortable home. He has perhaps the greatest ending of the characters as well, becoming the mayor of Pawnee for decades and dying on his 100th birthday.

Still, this one scene on the show did make fans want to give Jerry a hug.

Redditors felt terrible about Jerry's mural being rejected

In the Season 2 episode "The Camel," Pawnee employees have to come up with a new mural for the town hall because of the original one's extremely racist art. The characters propose various artworks and solutions, but Jerry actually makes a stunning pointillist painting of the building which uses photos of town citizens. Alas, Jerry's art is doomed once he accidentally uses the term "murinal" instead of "mural." His co-workers immediately get fixated on his verbal gaffe and disqualify the painting.

On the show's subreddit, u/vacavahhd wrote, "This scene is where I feel the worst for Gary/Jerry/Larry/Terry... they're so mean to him & he's such a sweet guy." It especially hurts that Jerry was inspired by his late grandmother but, as Tom (Aziz Ansari) yells at him, "No one cares!"

u/4Ever2Thee agreed, responding, "Sometimes I really hate him being the punching bag through the entire series." u/AKeiraO added that they "feel like that running gag got really old really fast.

However, others felt that the dark humor was worth it. u/Martino231 wrote, "I think it's the absurdity of the way that everyone treats Jerry which makes me laugh." It's funnier because Jerry has a great life otherwise, and his co-workers' treatment seems even more inexplicable next to his good-natured personality.

The writers decided to make Jerry a punching bag in Season 2

As Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) describes him in one episode, Jerry Gergich fits into the Yiddish archetypes of the schlemiel and the schlimazel: an inept person as well as an unlucky one (via The Huffington Post). However, the "Parks & Recreation" writers originally weren't sure how Jerry fit into the show until one early Season 2 episode.

According to the AV Club, show co-creator Michael Schur liked actor Jim O'Heir enough to cast him on the series but hadn't worked out what Jerry's character would be like yet. Schur admitted, "We didn't figure out Jerry until the episode where all the characters are digging up dirt about each other."

In "Practice Date," Jerry's discovery of Mark Brendanawicz's (Paul Schneider) parking tickets is topped by Mark finding out Jerry's adopted mother has an arrest record. But Mark is horrified to discover Jerry had no idea that he was adopted. Schur tole the AV Club, "And we realized that's who he is: He's the guy who wants to put his head down and get his pension, but is asking for it all the time." From then on, the writers loved coming up with Jerry put-downs, because as mean as they can be, they're also very funny.