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In “Sliding Doors,” the Broad City Season 4 premiere, we got to see how Ilana and Abbi met and became friends. Now, in “Friendiversary” (which just so happens to be the Season 4 finale), the broads end up at the very park bench on which they first bonded, albeit under very different circumstances.
Abbi wakes up to a giant cardboard cut-out of Ilana’s head, pulls a piece of paper out of its “mouth” and realizes that Ilana is sending her on an epic scavenger hunt. And unbeknownst to Abbi, Ilana is watching her complete the entire thing. As Abbi picks up clues from a garbage can, a bored bartender and his lecherous patron (who’s actually Ilana wearing a disguise), and a man standing outside a pet store, Ilana watches Abbi like a hawk.
Until Abbi reaches Houston BBQ, where an overjoyed Ilana awaits her with unusually large chicken fingers, margaritas, and a giant Abbi head that matches Abbi’s giant Ilana head.
Unfortunately for us, a few of the more exciting-sounding scavenger hunt stops don’t get shown (including one involving the Intrepid Museum and one involving a horse). Unfortunately for Abbi, she totally forgot her and Ilana’s Friendiversary. On one hand, it’s kind of baffling that Abbi finished an entire scavenger hunt without realizing that Ilana organized it for a special occasion. On the other hand, Ilana does ridiculous stuff all the time—so we’ll give Abbi a pass.
On top of the scavenger hunt, the chicken fingers and the cardboard heads, Ilana gifts Abbi with her great-grandmother’s diamond necklace (which she ate and pooped out multiple times to hide it on her way to America). In return, Abbi sifts through her purse and gifts Ilana with a…face mask. A hydrating face mask, which Abbi tries to pass off as a metaphor for her and Ilana’s friendship. Ilana’s clearly disappointed, so Abbi tries to save face by taking Ilana up to the top of the Empire State Building for a special Friendiversary outing. And it’s a good thing she does—Abbi and Ilana look through a tower viewer at just the right time and happen to witness what looks like a man pushing his wife off a balcony.
They tell the police about what happened, and the officers refuse to believe their claim without any evidence. But all hope is not lost—after the police officers leave, Abbi and Ilana spot the man from the balcony walk by with a large wheelie suitcase in tow. Large enough to store a dead body, perhaps?
The broads decide to follow Balcony Man into a karaoke bar, where all he does is eat dessert and drink an exceptionally tall glass of milk. Weird, but not necessarily dangerous.
Then they follow him to a nearby movie theatre, where he buys a ticket to something called “Daddy’s Back” (which is probably as gross as it sounds). The movie is almost two hours long, which gives Abbi and Ilana just enough time to break into Balcony Man’s apartment and dig around for murder evidence. It’s a terrible plan. But it leads to one of the simplest yet most hilarious moments of the season, in which they convince Balcony Man’s lobby attendant to let them upstairs by telling him it’s their uncle’s birthday.
They only get a few minutes to rummage around Balcony Man’s takeout menu file folder before he starts opening the door. Abbi and Ilana hide in the closet, but their position is compromised when he sees the “Happy Birthday Uncle” cake sitting on his kitchen counter. Abbi and Ilana exchange last words (Abbi tells Ilana that she’s her favourite person in the world and Ilana tells Abbi that she was actually the horse from the scavenger hunt), but things take a bizarre turn when they uncover a very uncomfortable looking sex doll at the exact moment when Balcony Man opens the closet door.
Balcony Man, whose real name is actually Terry (American Horror Story’s Denis O’Hare) explains that the sex doll’s name is Fran and that the woman who fell off the balcony was Fran’s “sister.” Again: weird, but not necessarily dangerous. Terry’s admission leads to a very awkward conversation between himself, the broads, and the two police officers from earlier (Ilana called 911 while she and Abbi were still in the closet). At one point, Ilana even defends Terry by comparing his love of sex dolls to police officers’ love of guns. But nobody gets charged, leaving Terry to eat his “Uncle” cake like a maniac and talk to Fran in peace.
Abbi and Ilana spend the rest of the episode discussing hypothetical sex with shoeless celebrities, and all seems right with the world. Abbi apologizes for forgetting their Friendiversary, but Ilana’s cool with it, especially because Abbi jumped in front of Ilana to save her when Terry opened the closet. Ilana does take back the poop necklace, though.
The broads’ ability to overcome any and all emotional speed bumps—even one as major as a forgotten Friendiversary—is a testament to their everlasting friendship. From their Rain Man-esque ability to remember Oprah episodes to their mutual love of giant chicken fingers, Ilana and Abbi’s friendship is fun, exciting, and filled with genuine, unadulterated love. And it’s always been that way—ever since the two of them decided to sign their names in wet cement.
“We’ve pissed our pants so many a time but this place was first and thus sublime.” — Ilana’s first scavenger hunt clue
“You regenerate me, and you restore me. Not only myself, but my skin.” — Abbi, trying to explain why she bought Ilana a face mask as a Friendiversary gift