Broad City, Season 2, Episode 2, “Mochalatta Chills”
Wednesday, January 21, 2015, 10:30 PM (EST), Comedy Central
Abbi and Ilana’s effortless and infectious affection for each other is the beating heart of Broad City, and this week we see them on a movie date fueled by a free movie ticket scheme. They see multiple movie,s bring their own snacks hidden in built-in compartments of their jackets, and disturb their neighbors because of how much more fun they’re having than everyone else. The highlight of this opening sequence is when Ilana pranks Abbi by offering her popcorn and letting her dig for “milk duds” which probably turn out to be… something other than milk duds. Her vagine, most likely. Adorable. On their way out, they pick up their next set of movie passes by complaining about the sound to the guy at the window who seems to use his job solely for naps.
The meat of the episode is a deep dive into Abbi and Ilana’s dead end jobs. The off kilter Broad City world has always contained this weird in-joke about how Ilana is able to keep her job despite taking naps at her desk, dressing inappropriately, and taking 2 hour breaks. Her meek boss Toby has had a talk with his therapist who believes it’s in his best interest to put his foot down and demand that she work, or at the very least beg by reading from a set of written remarks. Ilana accepts the challenge, but puts her own creative spin on it. She hires three ethnically diverse interns and gets them to do the work for her.
Abbi, who has worked as a cleaner at Soulstice gym for way too long, finally has the opportunity to prove herself as a trainer. Trey, her boss, is down because he’s just blown $14,000 on Zack Braff’s kickstarter. To add insult to injury, his name was misspelled in the credits and he didn’t get his promised set visit. Needing a pick me up, he decides to step things up at work. He’s found a muse in the most disgusting of places – Abbi’s de facto roommate/boyfriend to her actual roommate Bevers. It’s been well-established that this couch potato (who is now sporting actual couch sores) is a waste of space, but Abbi doesn’t have a good way to get rid of him except to shame him into doing something with his life and begging him to leave her apartment. He finally takes her words to heart and joins her gym, where Trey has made it his personal mission to turn this perfect “before” picture into a decent “after.”
Bevers is the kind of character that can get old if he’s actually given too much to do. When he’s just around for a couple of one-liners and an odd bit of physical comedy, he’s used perfectly. He’s best used to garner sympathy for Abbi. Here, he’s asked to carry an entire arc that just doesn’t play well. However, without his decision to finally leave the apartment, Abbi’s naked celebration of her personal space wouldn’t have happened. It was the highlight of the episode for me. I’m not a huge fan of the Lady Gaga song “Edge of Glory” but Abbi’s exuberance brightened my night.
Ilana treats Abbi to a power lunch at a fancy restaurant, where she supports Abbi during her stressful day by dramatically dropping her fork at Abbi’s shocking revelations and encouraging her to take advantage of her new opportunity at work. Ilana also brags about her $400 deal secured by her intern and how she got her “white power suit” at a heavily discounted price. Abbi points out the obvious irony of Ilana’s word choice, especially given the status of her unpaid interns. Back at work, Ilana fires her underlings with promises of IOU’s. We also find out that Ilana made out with not one, but two of her underlings, one of them a beautiful black girl. I love this show. Back at the gym, Abbi ends up pushing Bevers so hard that he passes out on the treadmill and sustains a concussion.
So Ilana gets to keep her job and Abbi is no closer to being promoted to trainer. All is well as they chat about the horrors of pregnancy and how Abbi will accommodate Ilana’s home birth in her bedroom. I could watch these two banter and love on each other until the end of time. Due to the heavy emphasis on Bevers, the episode fell pretty flat, but there were moments I laughed so hard I nearly fell off my couch. What’s interesting is that it’s one of the better structured, paced, and edited episodes, it just isn’t as successful because of the weak characterization and over reliance on a one-dimensional character. I love how the show dissects their dead end jobs and how they create their own solutions to their problems at work. It’s one of the best themes Broad City explores.
- “Challenge accepted! Okay I’m proud of you. That was great. You know? I’ll do it. I’ll work.”
- Trey to Abbi: “Our cycles must be synced.” “????” “You know, our happiness cycles.”
- “He’s the perfect before picture. He’ll be my garden state!”
- “Hashtag get clean. Your farts don’t smell healthy.”
- Ilana kissing Nicole against her will was weird and uncomfortable.
- “I’ve got a dirty martini and a white power suit…ethnic smorgasbord of unpaid workers.”
- “Is this because we made out?”
- “And your outfit is close to appropriate! Good job!”
Due to the heavy emphasis on Bevers, the episode fell pretty flat, but there were moments I laughed so hard I nearly fell off my couch.