How many times did Ben reject poor Barney’s job offer in Parks And Recreation? NBC’s mockumentary sitcom Parks And Rec was positively brimming with brilliant recurring characters and Barney Varmn was undoubtedly one of its best. Played by John Balma, Barney was an accountant with local Pawnee firm Tilton & Radomski and made his debut in season 2 episode “Leslie’s House” with a yawn-inducing QuickBooks Pro presentation that proved his love of both accounting and accounting-based puns.
Alongside his undying enthusiasm for his profession, Barney Varmn was known for his admiration for fellow accountant Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott). The pair first crossed paths in Parks And Rec season 4 episode “Citizen Knope” when Ben started looking for a new job following his resignation as Assistant City Manager of Pawnee. Ben landed an interview for a position at Tilton & Radomski Accounting where he impressed Barney with his experience and their shared love of accounting jokes.
The incident kick-started a recurring gag on Parks And Rec that involved Barney repeatedly offering Ben a job only to get turned down. The gag was made all the more hilarious by the fact Barney’s enthusiasm about hiring and re-hiring Ben never waned, despite Ben constantly rebuffing him. Read on for a list of every time Ben rejected a job offer from Barney in Parks And Rec.
Citizen Knope (Season 4, Episode 10)
Ben rejected Barney’s job offer for the first time in Parks And Rec’s “Citizen Knope.” Although his interview at Tilton & Radomski was successful, Ben was talked out of the job by Jean-Ralphio Saperstein (Ben Schwartz). Jean-Ralphio was then hired for the position himself despite knowing absolutely nothing about accounting and was promptly fired for sexual harassment.
Leslie Vs. April (Season 5, Episode 7)
After moving back to Pawnee from Washington D.C., Ben was yet again offered a job at Tilton & Radomski by Barney. This time, Ben made it as far as accepting the position and getting his own office at the firm before quitting because he felt he needed a new direction in life. Poor Barney.
The Cones Of Dunshire (Season 6, Episode 9)
Ever the optimist, Barney once again hired Ben after he was fired from Sweetums in the sixth season of Parks And Rec. Unfortunately for Barney, Ben only lasted for a few days before he quit to take a job as city manager of Pawnee. At least he gave Barney his Cones of Dunshire board game as a going away gift.
Moving Up: Part 2 (Season 6, Episode 22)
Later in season 6, Ben discovered Barney had copyrighted Cones of Dunshire as a birthday gift. Ben asked Barney how he could repay him, to which the latter replied by asking him to come work at the accounting firm again. Ben accepted the offer than immediately declined, with Barney remarking that Ben’s latest tenure with Tilton & Radomski was the “shortest one yet.”
Ms. Ludgate-Dwyer Goes To Washington (Season 7, Episode 8)
The fifth and final time Ben rejected Barney’s job offer on Parks And Rec was actually on behalf of April Ludgate (Aubrey Plaza). Ben teamed up with Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) and Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) to persuade Barney to give April a job at the accounting firm. Barney relented only for April to decline the job offer, with Ben awkwardly delivering the bad news.