MovieChat Forums > Parks and Recreation Discussion > Can we talk about Tom? About how much I ...

Can we talk about Tom? About how much I hate him? Because I do.


I hate Tom. I hate Tom. I really and truly hate Tom. I know he's not supposed to be likable, but I've never seen a single redeeming quality in him. Can anyone make a case for not hating him? I don't like hating this much, but he is such a full-on horse's arse.

reply

I like Tom a lot as both a comic character as a person.

As a person, he's very never-give-up and he's very scrawny and doesn't have a lot going for him. He's a South Asian and those guys never get women and he's very scrawny. He also has a general love of the next big thing. It's kind of a millenial thing.

As a character, I thought he had great comic energy.

Not sure if I should start a new thread for him, but I never got behind Ron Swanson, TBH. I didn't like all his machismo and find it very one note


sophomorecritic.blogspot.com
Twitter @okonh0wp

reply

Not sure if I should start a new thread for him, but I never got behind Ron Swanson, TBH. I didn't like all his machismo and find it very one note

And that would be MY cue:

Ron rocks, 'cause we live in a world where at least in the media, there's an unspoken rule that we must have physically appealing, upbeat, socially warm, perpetually amiable characters.

Ron is none of that, but he's still a decent guy. Much more than Tom, that's for sure. I'm not saying Tom's a bad guy, but Ron is way more principled, decent, and appealing by comparison.

reply

I wonder if the Tom vs Ron thing is generational, at least in part. I am middle aged, and I much prefer the slightly older, definitely more conservative personality of Ron Swanson. And as others have said, I can't bring myself to watch Aziz Ansari in anything else, at least not on purpose. His schtick on P&R typifies soulless, vacuous youth.

reply

I wonder if the Tom vs Ron thing is generational, at least in part.

Maybe, but I think a lot of people who dislike Tom are his age—myself included. He's just universally annoying, lol. (To a lot of people, I mean).

And Ron is cool regardless of generations. I know lots of young viewers who love him. His appeal is also universal ;)

reply

Good to know it's not just my age. I know my nephew Paul likes Ron, and Paul's 27.

reply

Ok here is my argument, be it what it will:

Tom was a nerdy pariah growing up which is mentioned during the conversation about him being the new Jerry, but he says he already was a Jerry. Think about how horribly they treat Jerry! Blaming him for everything, constantly ganging up on him, making fun of him; if that is really how Tom was treated before Pawnee then of course he was obnoxious and rude! He would literally do anything at that point to avoid falling back into it, including being a complete ass because likely that is how the people who outcasted him acted, being rude and crossing boundaries, always pointing fingers etc., so his behavior is a misguided attempt to be cool.

BUT you see his real side come out every once in a while, when he refused to give his speech about Ben in the final season but showed it to Ben later because he was scared of showing his emotional side, when he put the money in the jar, when he kept failing at his businesses and especially when he was with (I can't remember her name but the girl he ended up with) he was actually sweet.

Yes his character acts terribly, but I let it go because I think you can see his real side enough that you know it is a guise and his fear actually shows a lot of vulnerability.

reply

I hate him, but I think he is funny more often than not, so it's OK.

But yeah...the Harvest Festival episode when he loses Lil Sebastian, I wish Ron had tossed him off that ferris wheel.

reply

[deleted]

Can I just make an argument for the term swag? The term has been co-opted to refer to a person who has a lot of materialistic goods and tries to stay up on current trends. However, swag, as I learned it, refers to people (usually men) who have confidence and are self assured. Their self-confidence usually shows in how they carry themselves. If anything, Ron has 100x more swag than Tom. Not important, but I wanted to make that distinction.

As for the actual topic, I certainly find Tom to be the most annoying, but I don't really hate him. I can understand where the hate comes from though. His whining and immaturity annoy me the most. I think he is well meaning, but it is normally overshadowed by his selfishness and need to over compensate.

Some of us prefer illusion to despair.-Nelson Muntz

reply

Well put, on both points. Thanks for sharing.

Still, I personally don't like Tom because of my experiences with guys like him. They find me antagonistic and condescend to me, especially because of their own insecurities and covert deficiencies.

reply

For me it's due to his pathetic and childlike worshipping of celebrities etc. Like if Jay-Z (if that's how you spell it, CBA to check) buys a pair of shoes, Tom has to get the same ones. That behaviour would be sad from a five year old kid, but for an adult male to be so heavily invested in someone like that suggests a massive inferiority complex. I honestly don't think I've ever laughed at anything Tom has said/done.
But given how much I love Ron, I really can't understand how he managed to be a father figure to him - he surely should have lost patience with him after the first five seconds of his wittering nonsense.

reply

I was fine with Tom for the most part, but I think it's the first episode of S7 when he's getting interviewed I thought "Holy crap he's sounding exactly like that cologne guy."

reply

I hated Tom in various degrees throughout the series.

I know i'm replying to a "dead" post from imdb but i hate him so much, i can't help saying it here as well.

What a miserable self obsessed shallow piece of garbage human. Yeah, you get a bit of dialogue in one episode to explain why he acts that way but it's irelevant. It doesn't matter how someone is deep down, it only matters how one acts on the outside.

I couldn't understand why the others, besides Donna, put up with his crap.

reply