'Broad City' Is Tackling Donald Trump's Presidency In An Unexpected Way
Abbi and Ilana are taking a walk on the dark side in 2017. The next season of Broad City will tackle Donald Trump's presidency, and it's not pulling any punches. In an interview with Elle at Sundance, the Comedy Central show's creator and star Abbi Jacobson said President Trump will play a role in the upcoming fourth season, set to air this summer. "I think we are going through an interesting time in our country starting from today," she said, "and I think the show will reflect that.” Even the show's setting was inspired by Trump's presidency. Instead of taking place in summer, which has been the case for the previous three seasons, this one will be set in the winter. Why? Because "it tends to be a little more sad."
Jacobson admits that she and her co-star Ilana Glazer were shocked by the election results and actually had to rework some of the upcoming season, which begins shooting in February. It's something that shows like The Good Wife spin-off The Good Fight has also said was a result of Trump's win. Abbi and Ilana seem to be stand-ins for all of those who just got woke to the situation. “They’re not like political geniuses or anything," Jacobson said. "They’re figuring it out and how to become more politically evolved.”
Despite a cameo from Hillary Clinton last year, Broad City has never been outwardly political — even that cameo was deemed apolitical by the Jacobson and Glazer. "That’s not our show really: Let’s make a political stance here," Jacobson told Entertainment Weekly then. It's why the show has always tackled issues like women's rights in more of a tongue-in-cheek way with a clear feminist slant. But with President Trump threatening women's rights by signing the Global Gag Rule, which is a clear first step to taking reproductive rights away from women, and making major moves to limit the rights of other minority groups like LGBTQ+, immigrants, and Muslims, it makes sense that the show could not just stand back and laugh it off. The stakes are too high to stay silent.
They showed this in a recent Hacking Broad City short that cast Trump's inauguration as if it was the apocalypse. Following a rant that has them bleeping out every mention of Trump's name, but leaves in the f-words, Glazer says Trump being sworn in as the 45th President of the United States is "not even funny." It certainly jives with the tone they say they're taking next season.
There's something else the show plans to do next season: become more intersectional. Glazer and Jacobson are loud and proud feminists, but they know there is more they can do to include those whose experience are rarely seen on television. As Jacobson told Elle:
Ilana and I talk a lot about making sure we are on the side of anyone that is disenfranchised. It’s hard, we are still white girls making this show and the show has an opportunity to speak to more than that. We can’t help that, but we can try and tell other stories and be more inclusive.
This feels important after an election where 53 percent of white women voted for Trump and many women of color have rightfully questioned where white women have been in protests preceding the recent Women's March. Broad City's tone may be darker this time around, but the show can also shine a light on how we got here with a sense of humor.