Broad City 5.3 Recap: Turning Moral Dilemmas Into Positivity

by Gary Catig

Ilana’s mom is outside a nondescript door with her daughter and Abbi. A heavy-set bouncer looking fellow greets them and lets them inside. Though the initial appearance has the makings of a sketchy business, the three of them are actually there to purchase a bra that fits perfectly. It’s almost as a rite of passage as our leads are accurately measured. They pay a hefty price, but there is nothing more valuable than a perfect bra.

[*Spoilers For 5.3 Ahead!]

Ilana likes to tout her environmental awareness and living a green lifestyle. She’s been waiting for a bulb in an old lamp to burn out before she replaces it with an energy efficient one. When the day comes to change the light, she finds a message reminding her of a small fortune owed to her by an old flame. She sets out to find this ex and collect her share of a Bitcoin. She wants to use that money to file patents on her new business venture, wigs for mobile phones.

Ilana is on a mission and even purchases a new power suit, one of patent leather inspired by The Matrix. The suit allows her to backflip off walls, to bend backwards to evade thrown sandwiches and to perform gravity defying powers like causing male erections. Eventually she cashes in but not before facing a moral dilemma. Bitcoin is the pedophile currency of choice that fuels the child sex trade and illegal arms. Also, it helps kill the earth by contributing to greenhouse gases. Can Ilana use this dirty cash to fund her phone wigs?

Broad City’s other half seems to be in a good spot financially. Abbi can now afford to drop off her laundry instead of doing it herself. Unfortunately, her first time turns out to be a bad experience since the laundromat loses her favorite hoodie from her alma mater, MICA. She’s so distraught that she makes flyers of her missing sweatshirt that leads to more trouble. Graphic design isn’t her forte and a formatting error made people believe that she was missing to the point she made the local news.

Abbi clears everything up but when she goes to remove her flyers, she finds she was covering up more important ones like for a missing boy, a Black Lives Matter march and an Abolish I.C.E. meeting. At least all the attention had one benefit; she did find her hoodie. Someone saw the news and returned it to the laundromat. Feeling ashamed, Abbi tries to giver her sweatshirt to a homeless person but he can’t wear that crap. He went to RISD.

No matter how hard you try to live a good life, sometimes bad things pop up. It can be using a sketchy cryptocurrency or drowning out legitimate causes over something arbitrary like a hoodie. What one does afterwards can help shape that person. For our two heroines of Broad City, they acknowledge the moral predicament they’re in but choose to use the situation in a positive way. Ilana plans on creating a woman owned, eco-friendly business while Abbi offered to help someone less fortunate than her.

Other interesting episode notes:

  • It’s a good thing they went to a specialty bra place because their items aren’t ones that are standard issue. Abbi’s asymmetry caused her to have two different bras sewn together while Ilana is a 28-KKK.
  • People keep prized possessions in a bank safe deposit box. For Ilana that’s a few pictures with Abbi and a ton of old cell phones with dick pics organized by year.
  • Ilana’s phone wigs are a good mix from pop culture (the Ross and Rachel) and her friends (Abbi, Lincoln and Jaimé). She even has a nod to her wig she wore last season when she pooped herself.

Broad City airs Wednesdays at 10:30 pm on Comedy Central.

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