‘Parks and Recreation’: Ben Schwartz Thinks Perd Hapley Is 1 of the Funniest Characters on TV
Everyone could use a good laugh right now, and Parks and Recreation is a great show to watch if you are in need of some humor. Ben Schwartz appeared on Parks and Recreation as Jean-Ralphio Saperstein, one of the show’s most popular supporting characters.
In a 2018 interview with Buzzfeed, Schwartz discussed his time on the show and revealed some of his favorite characters.
Ben Schwartz on ‘Parks and Recreation’
On Aug. 23, 2018, Buzzfeed Celeb posted a video segment called “Ben Schwartz Spills The Tea on Parks and Rec.” As Schwartz poured cups of tea, he answered questions about Parks and Recreation and his acting career.
“I feel like when we look back at the show, the writing staff of that show is so strong,” he said of Parks and Recreation. “If you look at it it’s like the best writers and so when we got scripts it was always the funniest thing I’d ever read.”
While filming each episode, the cast would get to improvise some.
“So we would always do it as is, and I’ll play a little bit and then many times we’ll do something called a fun run at the end where you can kind of go nuts,” he said. “Sometimes they keep some of that, sometimes they don’t.”
Ben Schwartz played Jean Ralphio on the show
Parks and Recreation aired on NBC from 2009 to 2015. Schwartz played Jean-Ralphio, the best friend of Tom Haverford (Aziz Ansari). Jean-Ralphio was known for his fashion, avoiding responsibility, and spontaneously singing.
“Jean-Ralphio and I have many traits in common,” Schwartz told Buzzfeed. “We have the same hair. Anytime I would play Jean-Ralphio I would grow out my hair as long as I could so when it came time, I looked as stupid as I could. Me and the hair and makeup people had like the best time making me look like a crazy cartoon character every time we did it.”
His favorite characters on ‘Parks and Recreation’
As a workplace comedy, Parks and Recreation is filled with incredibly humorous characters. Amy Poehler starred as Leslie Knope, Rashida Jones played Ann Perkins, Nick Offerman received critical acclaim for Ron Swanson, Aubrey Plaza played April Ludgate, and Chris Pratt appeared as Andy Dwyer.
When asked what character he would want to play, Schwartz replied, “I would probably want to switch with Pratt. Pratt or Perd Hapley. And I could never do Nick Offerman’s character, he’s just too perfect like I wouldn’t be able to do it.”
Schwartz then revealed that Perd Hapley (Jay Jackson) is one of his favorite TV characters of all time. On the show, Perd Hapley is a TV journalist known for speaking in awkward and excessive sentences.
“Perd Hapley is one of my favorite characters on all of television,” Schwartz said with a laugh. “I think he’s so funny. I think he’s so funny.”