From the opening theme music, with the apt acoustic guitar that brings to mind comedy classics of an earlier era in sitcom history, to the last beat Broad City is a delight to the listener as well as the funny bone. Most of the series music is a combination of a small handful of well-recognized favorites, more obscure up and coming acts and indie music artists. The music director Matt FX clearly knows his business, as well as the writers/stars Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer, know their comedy.
The whole identity of the show hinges on modern struggles and a very tailored and relevant soundtrack that speaks to city dwellers in modern New York. The soundtrack of your life and it’s important moments can evoke strong feelings even years later, and Broad City connects with that sense of musical importance with every episode.
It is impossible to talk about Broad City without at least giving a nod to the most hilarious cold open the show has ever done. The music video montage set to Drake’s Started From The Bottom is everything. The sense of real accomplishment connected to a high-dollar paycheck and the oh-so-easy to spoof modern music video vibe combine here in cinematic perfection. You can feel the excitement the song embodies as you watch them dance their way through bank crowds that run the gamut from jealously confused to wildly excited party staples and even ‘that guy,’ who is a party trope running around without his pants.
There is little else you could ask of a comedy show that clearly values music at least as much as cashing a great paycheck. Jacobsen and Glazer maintain a perspective on how real the struggle is when you are just starting out in life and turn it into one of the best sequences in the whole series. Tongue in cheek yet relatable are hallmarks of this brilliant show. The ability to connect with your audience through musical brilliance while using self-abasing humor is rare.
Low Moments and Highs
Watching this show progress, and rooting for the girls as they struggle with their own lack-of-cool that is its own form of awesomeness makes the show so connected with the way young people, especially women, feel and don’t want to admit. Watching Abbi struggle with something as awkward as buying pot, not as a criminal mastermind or junkie, but as an average decent human who wants to give correct change and do regular business is unique social commentary.
Turning your own flaws into a career is something very few people can accomplish. The mockingly amazing musical celebration of finally being rid of an insufferable coworker like Ilana was at Deals Deals Deals is something we all wish we could participate in. Real life lacks coordinated song and dance routines, but if we could have them, inviting Whoopi Goldberg would be on every bucket list.
Essentially Modern Females
The fearless spirit of vulnerable perseverance is present in great musical moments like the naked opening that utilizes Lady Gaga’s Edge of Glory. The beauty and power of that performance are not lessened by the overarching comedy. Some actresses struggle with doing nude work, but others own it, and this is the latter.
The Beacons Closet moment featuring Tasha the Amazon’s Steady Now embodies the money-centric struggle that is one of the shows main themes. From the first moment in season one where the ladies have their altercation over getting change from the homeless to the golden bike helmeted Drake opening, being chronically short on cash in a consumer society is something all fans of the show can understand.
Watching the Christmas tree tackle scene after Abbi announces she’s going to Boulder with its ambient golden light and angelic music is not to be missed. Equally, watching the ladies freak out, rant over the incomparable Alan Cumming is fun. Watching them drag the elderly ‘cousin Saul,’ along following Alan Cumming to a Drag Brunch featuring his performance of a spoofed Be Our Guest, called “You’re Our Guest” is magically bizarre.
Strange, beautiful and unforgettable describes the entire tone of the show from end to end, but it also sums up the musical selections that they’ve so carefully curated. Not to be missed, Broad City shares something vital and worthy with the audience and provides a perfect soundtrack. If you haven’t had the pleasure yet, do so. It is worth a listen and a laugh.