Open main menu

Broad City is an American television sitcom created by and starring Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson. It was developed from their independent web series of the same name, which was produced between 2009 and 2011.[1] The sitcom, like the web series, is based on Glazer and Jacobson's real-life friendship, and their attempt to "make it" in New York.[2] The sitcom premiered on Comedy Central on January 22, 2014 and aired for five seasons, ending on March 28, 2019.[3][4] The show received critical acclaim throughout its run and is considered one of the best television shows of the 2010s.[5][6]

Broad City
Broad City Logo 2014-02-07 20-26.gif
GenreSitcom
Created by
Starring
  • Abbi Jacobson
  • Ilana Glazer
Opening theme"Latino & Proud" by DJ Raff
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes50 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
Producer(s)
  • Lilly Burns
  • John Skidmore
Animator(s)Mike Perry
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)
DistributorViacom Media Networks
Release
Original networkComedy Central
Picture format1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Audio formatStereo (2014–15)
5.1 surround sound (2016–19)
Original releaseJanuary 22, 2014 (2014-01-22) –
March 28, 2019 (2019-03-28)
External links
Website

SynopsisEdit

Broad City follows Ilana and Abbi, two Jewish American women in their twenties, on their adventures of carelessness and frivolity in New York City. Ilana seeks to avoid working as much as possible while relentlessly pursuing a hedonistic lifestyle, and Abbi tries to make a career as an illustrator, often getting sidetracked into Ilana's schemes.

CastEdit

Main castEdit

 
Jacobson (left) and Glazer (right) at Internet Week New York in May 2015.

Recurring castEdit

  • Hannibal Buress as Lincoln Rice, DDS – a pediatric dentist with whom Ilana has a casual sexual relationship.
  • Paul W. Downs as Trey Pucker – Abbi's boss at Soulstice.
  • John Gemberling as Matt Bevers – Abbi's roommate Melody's boyfriend
  • Arturo Castro as Jaimé Castro – Ilana's roommate.
  • Stephen Schneider as Jeremy Santos – Abbi's across-the-hall neighbor
  • Chris Gethard as Todd – Ilana's boss at fictional web "deal" company Deals! Deals! Deals!
  • Nicole Drespel as Nicole – Ilana's former co-worker, a serious worker who disdains Ilana and secretly documented her offensive activities in the office.
  • Eliot Glazer as Eliot Wexler – Ilana's brother. The actor is Ilana's brother in real life.
  • Susie Essman as Bobbi Wexler – Ilana and Eliot's mother who lives on Long Island.
  • Bob Balaban as Arthur Wexler – Ilana and Eliot's father who lives on Long Island.
  • D'Arcy Carden as Gemma – One of Abbi's co-workers at Soulstice.

EpisodesEdit

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
110January 22, 2014 (2014-01-22)March 26, 2014 (2014-03-26)
210January 14, 2015 (2015-01-14)March 18, 2015 (2015-03-18)
310February 17, 2016 (2016-02-17)April 20, 2016 (2016-04-20)
410September 13, 2017 (2017-09-13)December 6, 2017 (2017-12-06)
510January 24, 2019 (2019-01-24)March 28, 2019

ProductionEdit

Development of Web SeriesEdit

Glazer and Jacobson met in New York City, where they both attended courses at the Upright Citizens Brigade and were part of a small improv comedy group, Secret Promise Circle.[9] The web series began after Jacobson received poor feedback on a project she and a partner had been working on. Jacobson expressed her frustration to Glazer, and the two decided to work together on a project that became the web series.[10] In February 2010 they started their own web series on YouTube, which proved popular.[9]

Jacobson met Paul W. Downs in improv class and both Jacobson and Glazer met Lucia Aniello through the Upright Citizens Brigade.[9] Both were fans of the of the web series pilot and Aniello would then direct one episode of the web series.[9] The web series ran for two seasons and the finale starred Amy Poehler.[9]

Development of TV pilot and first seasonEdit

Amy Poehler became aware of the series and mentored Glazer and Jacobson, becoming executive producer when the show came to TV. When Glazer and Jacobson wrote the pilot script, their characters were named Evelyn Wexler and Carly Abrams[11] respectively, but ended up using their real first names instead. Poehler, Glazer, and Jacobson went to Los Angeles to pitch the pilot.[9] The show was originally pitched to the FX, who bought the script and passed a year later,[9] due to it being "too girly", according to Jacobson.[6] Comedy Central committed to the show in 2012 and the pilot was developed, with Aniello directing.[9] For the first season, Jacobson and Glazer were paired with Tami Sagher, an experienced showrunner, with Downs, Aniello, and Chris Kelly completing the writing room.[9] Downs and Aniello would also produce the show, with Downs appearing as Trey in the series.[12] After the first season, Glazer and Jacobson parted ways with Sagher and became the showrunners.[9]

Throughout its run, the show was noted for its notable performances by guest stars, which included Kelly Ripa, Poehler, Hillary Clinton, and Ru Paul.[13] Broad City: High Score, a mobile game developed and published by Built Games, was released on April 20, 2018.[14]

Final seasonEdit

Glazer and Jacobson decided to end the show after five seasons.[9] Of their final season, Glazer said: "I feel like we've raised these kids, Abbi Abrams and Ilana Wexler, and we're sending them to college," Glazer says. "We didn't want to just go until it got canceled. We wanted to choose to end it so that it could end as strong as possible. We chose this ending to honor the characters."[8] In their final season, Glazer and Jacobson open with an episode that unfolds likes a long Instagram story. Throughout the season, the characters go to MoMA[8] as well as drag brunch.

ReceptionEdit

RatingsEdit

Since its premiere in 2014, Broad City has performed well, averaging 1.2 million viewers per episode, becoming Comedy Central's highest-rated first season since 2012 among the younger demographics, including adults 18–34.[15] Despite initial commercial success and ongoing positive critical reviews, by March 2016 the show was receiving well under 1 million viewers, with less than 600,000 tuning in during the second week of the month.[16]

Broad City : U.S. viewers per episode (thousands)
 
SeasonEpisode numberAverage
12345678910
1914867897793784924857854875812858
2863845659771760744661684763672742
3772633599574640569631591530626617
4879614709516548602563561450401584
5408386313269251291304327274299312
Audience measurement performed by Nielsen Media Research.[citation needed]

Critical receptionEdit

The show has received critical acclaim. Review aggregation website Metacritic noted season 1 received "generally favorable reviews," giving it a score of 75 out of 100, based on reviews from 14 critics.[17] Karen Valby from Entertainment Weekly described the show as a "deeply weird, weirdly sweet, and completely hilarious comedy."[18] The Wall Street Journal referred to the show as "Sneak Attack Feminism." Critic Megan Angelo quotes Abbi Jacobson, main star of Comedy Central's Broad City: "If you watch one of our episodes, there's not a big message, but if you watch all of them, I think, they're empowering to women."[19] The A.V. Club critic Caroline Framke wrote that Broad City was "worth watching" despite its "well-trod premise," and that the series is "remarkably self-possessed, even in its first episode."[1] Critics have compared the show to Seinfeld, especially due to the characters' perceived lack of personal development as well as humor involving the minutae of daily life.[20][21][22]

Season 1 of the show received a 96% "Certified Fresh" rating from Rotten Tomatoes, based on reviews from 23 critics, with the site's consensus stating, "From its talented producers to its clever writing and superb leads, Broad City boasts an uncommonly fine pedigree."[23] The A.V. Club named Broad City the second best TV show of 2014, Slate named it the best show of the year, and Screen Rant named it the 5th best of the year.[24][25][26]

Season 2 received positive reviews, with Metacritic giving it a score of 89 out of 100, based on reviews from 8 critics, indicating "universal acclaim."[27] Rotten Tomatoes gave the second season a rating of 100%, based on reviews from 11 critics, with the site's consensus: "Led by two of the funniest women on TV, Broad City uses its stars' vibrant chemistry to lend an element of authenticity to the show's chaotic yet enlightening brand of comedy."[28] Broad City again appeared on year of end lists for 2015, placing 5th on Time Out's list and 2nd on Rolling Stone's list.[29][30] Vox named it the 2nd funniest show on television and The Atlantic named "Wisdom Teeth" one of the best episodes of TV that year.[31][32]

Season 3 received positive reviews as well, with Metacritic giving it a score of 87 out of 100, based on reviews from 8 critics, indicating "universal acclaim."[33] Ben Travers from Indiewire summarizes what he sees as the strengths of the first two episodes of season 3: "Each half-hour feels as free-wheeling and wild as Ilana so boldly is, but also as meticulously put-together as Abby [sic] strives to be...the integration of its two creators attitudes into the core makeup of the series helps to illustrate how groundbreaking Broad City really is."[34] In 2016, Broad City placed 18th on Complex's best shows of the year, 15th on Den of Geek's list, and 14th on Esquire's mid-year list.[35][36][37]

Season 4 received positive reviews, with Metacritic giving it a score of 85 out of 100, based on reviews from 5 critics, indicating "universal acclaim."[38] Rotten Tomatoes gave the season a rating of 100%, based on reviews from 23 critics, with the site's consensus: "Pizza and weird are always in season for Abbi and Ilana in their fourth, wintery year of Broad City's weed-infused escapades."[39] NME named Broad City the 20th best TV show of the year for 2017.[40]

The final season also received positive reviews, with Metacritic giving it a score of 80 out of 100, based on reviews from 5 critics, indicating "generally favourable reviews."[41] Rotten Tomatoes gave the season a rating of 100%, based on reviews from 25 critics, with the site's consensus: "Glazer and Jacobson give the people exactly what they want in Broad City's final season - relatable content, questionable intimacy, and ingenious escapades through the glorious squalor of IRL NYC."[42] Broad City was named one of the best shows of the year by Junkee and "Stories" was named one of the best TV episodes of the year by Decider.[43][44]

Broad City appeared on many best of the decade lists for television. Vanity Fair named Broad City the ninth best show of the decade and Rolling Stone named it the 28th best show of the decade.[45][46] It was also name the 20th, 34th, and 41st best show of the decade, by Junkee, The AV Club, and Film School Rejects, respectively.[47][48][49] The Guardian named Broad City the 96th best TV show of the 21st Century.[50] The Advocate named the show the 15th "Most Important LGBTQ TV Show" of the decade.[51]

The show has been named as an influence on similar shows, such as PEN15 and Tuca & Bertie.[52][53]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Recipient(s) Result
2014 Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Comedy Series Broad City Nominated
Best Actress in a Comedy Series Ilana Glazer Nominated
2015 Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Comedy Series Broad City Nominated
Best Actress in a Comedy Series Ilana Glazer Nominated
Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series Susie Essman Nominated
2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards Best Comedic Performance Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson Nominated
2018 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Motion Design Mike Perry (animation director) Won

Home mediaEdit

DVD title Episodes Release date Rating Additional
Region 1[54] Region 4[55] MPA-C[56] ACB[57]
Season 1 10 December 2, 2014 November 4, 2015 14A MA15+

Features:

  • 2-disc set
  • 220 minutes
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0
  • English subtitles SDH
  • Special features:
    • Outtakes & deleted scenes
    • Video commentary on select episodes
    • Photo gallery
    • Includes map of "Broad City" drawn by Abbi
Season 2 10 January 5, 2016 April 6, 2016 14A MA15+

Features:

  • 2-disc set
  • 220 minutes
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0
  • English subtitles SDH
  • Also released on Blu-ray (Region A only - January 5, 2016)[58]
Season 3 10 January 10, 2017 March 8, 2017 14A MA15+

Features:

  • 2-disc set
  • 210 minutes
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0
  • English subtitles SDH
Season 4 10 April 16, 2018 July 3, 2018 14A MA15+

Features:

  • 2-disc set
  • 215 minutes
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0
  • English subtitles SDH
Season 5 10 July 9, 2019 TBD 14A MA15+

Features:

  • 2-disc set
  • 222 minutes
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0
  • English subtitles SDH

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Framke, Caroline (January 22, 2014). "Broad City: 'What A Wonderful World'". The A.V. Club. Retrieved January 30, 2014.
  2. ^ "Id Girls". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2016-09-22.
  3. ^ a b c "Breaking News – Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer's "Broad City" Comes to Comedy Central(R) on Wednesday, January 22 at 10:30 P.M. ET/PT". TheFutonCritic.com. December 10, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
  4. ^ Nemetz, Dave (April 12, 2018). "Broad City to End With Season 5". TVLine. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
  5. ^ Club, The A. V. "The 100 best TV shows of the 2010s". TV Club. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  6. ^ a b Boucher, Geoff; Boucher, Geoff (2019-03-29). "Bright Lights, 'Broad City': Comedy Central Series Bids Farewell To NYC In Finale". Deadline. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  7. ^ "'Jews on a Plane' script".
  8. ^ a b c "Broad City's Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer Bring the Art World Back to Earth". Cultured Magazine. 2019-02-04. Archived from the original on 2016-10-31. Retrieved 2019-03-18.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k EST, Anna Menta On 03/07/19 at 8:30 AM (2019-03-07). "'Broad City,' an oral history: Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer on the rise and finale of their culture-shaking show". Newsweek. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  10. ^ Alter, Charlotte. "8 Things You Didn't Know About Abbi and Ilana". TIME.com. Retrieved 2016-09-21.
  11. ^ "Pilot episode script" (PDF). Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  12. ^ Press, Joy (February 12, 2016). "The Secret Weapons of 'Broad City' Make Fine Art From Crude Humor". The New York Times. Retrieved April 3, 2016.
  13. ^ "How Broad City Became the Greatest Show on Television". www.out.com. 2016-02-25. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  14. ^ "Abbi and Ilana Get the Mobile Game Treatment in Broad City: High Score".
  15. ^ "Comedy Central Renews 'Broad City' for Second Season". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2016-02-19.
  16. ^ "Wednesday cable ratings: 'Broad City' falls". TV By the Numbers. Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  17. ^ Broad City at Metacritic, Retrieved January 30, 2014.
  18. ^ Karen Valby (2014-03-13). "Broad City". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2016-01-03.
  19. ^ Angelo, Megan (14 February 2011). "The Sneak-Attack Feminism of 'Broad City'". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  20. ^ Kornhaber, Spencer (13 September 2017). "Darkness on the Edge of 'Broad City'". The Atlantic.
  21. ^ Framke, Caroline; Caswell, Estelle (17 February 2016). "A guide to Broad City's weird and wonderful world of jokes". Vox.
  22. ^ Molotkow, Alexandra (January 16, 2015). "Why Broad City is both good art and responsible pop culture". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved February 22, 2019.
  23. ^ "Broad City: Season 1". rottentomatoes.com. 22 January 2014. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  24. ^ Erik Adams; Joshua Alston; Gwen Ihnat; Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya; Myles McNutt; Genevieve Valentine & Scott Von Doviak (December 11, 2014). "The best TV shows of 2014 (part 2)". The A.V. Club. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  25. ^ "The Best TV Shows of 2014 - 'Broad City', 'Happy Valley' & More". ScreenRant. 2014-12-26. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  26. ^ Paskin, Willa (2014-12-08). "The 10 Best TV Shows of 2014". Slate Magazine. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  27. ^ "Broad City". Metacritic. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  28. ^ "Broad City: Season 2". rottentomatoes.com. 14 January 2015. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  29. ^ Sheffield, Rob; Sheffield, Rob (2015-12-02). "25 Best TV Shows of 2015". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  30. ^ "The 17 best TV shows of 2015". Time Out New York. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  31. ^ Framke, Caroline (2015-12-20). "The 13 funniest TV shows of 2015". Vox. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  32. ^ Editors, The (2015-12-18). "The Best Television Episodes of 2015". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  33. ^ "Broad City". Metacritic. Retrieved 11 March 2016.
  34. ^ "Review: 'Broad City' Season 3 Prevails as a Singular and Innovative Comedy of the Now". rottentomatoes.com. 14 January 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2016.
  35. ^ Editors, Esquire (2016-12-28). "The 25 Best TV Shows of 2016 (So Far)". Esquire. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  36. ^ "16 Best TV Comedies of 2016". Den of Geek. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  37. ^ "The 25 Best TV Shows of 2016". Complex. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  38. ^ Broad City, retrieved 2019-11-13
  39. ^ Broad City: Season 4, retrieved 2019-11-13
  40. ^ "NME's TV of the year 2017". NME Music News, Reviews, Videos, Galleries, Tickets and Blogs | NME.COM. 2017-12-28. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  41. ^ Broad City, retrieved 2019-11-13
  42. ^ Broad City: Season 5, retrieved 2019-11-13
  43. ^ "The Best TV Episodes Of 2019". Decider. 2019-12-10. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  44. ^ "The Best TV Of 2019". Junkee. 2019-12-10. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  45. ^ Sepinwall, Alan; Fontoura, Maria (2019-12-04). "50 Best TV Shows of the 2010s". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  46. ^ Nast, Condé. "The 10 Best TV Shows of the 2010s". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  47. ^ "The 50 Best TV Shows of the Decade (2010-2019)". Film School Rejects. 2019-11-17. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  48. ^ "The 50 TV Shows That Defined The Decade". Junkee. 2019-12-02. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  49. ^ Club, The A. V. "The 100 best TV shows of the 2010s". TV Club. Retrieved 2019-12-07.
  50. ^ Abbott, Kate; Davies, Hannah J.; Mumford, Gwilym; Seale, Jack; Harrison, Phil (2019-09-16). "The 100 best TV shows of the 21st century". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  51. ^ "The 20 Most Important LGBTQ TV Shows of the Decade". www.advocate.com. 2019-11-28. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  52. ^ "'PEN15' Creators Want Hulu Comedy to Remain in Seventh Grade for Season 2 (and Beyond)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  53. ^ "'Tuca and Bertie' Is Too Close to 'Broad City' for Comfort". Time. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  54. ^ Region 1 DVD:
  55. ^ Region 4 DVD:
  56. ^
  57. ^
  58. ^ "Broad City: Season 2 Blu-ray". Blu-ray.com. Retrieved 20 October 2017.

External linksEdit