Witches Aren’t Monsters, They’re Just Women: Why This Week’s Broad City Episode Ruled


broad city witches abbi and ilana

Ilana’s been raving about the awesomeness of witches all season—in ‘Twaining Day,’ she discouraged Abbi from cutting her bangs because growing them out is supposedly “witchier.” So it’s no wonder Ilana’s witch obsession came to a head in this week’s aptly titled ‘Witches,’ an ode to bitchy, sexy, and just plain crazy women everywhere.



We don’t think we’ve seen anybody get as excited over a grey hair as Ilana Wexler. Like, ever. As soon as she spots one on Abbi’s head, she proclaims that receiving one’s first grey is “the most powerful moment in a woman’s life” and insists it’s a sign that Abbi is on her way to becoming a full-fledged witch.

Abbi, on the other hand, isn’t quite as ecstatic. She thought she’d kick off the “posting acai bowl pictures on Instagram” phase of her life long before entering the grey-haired phase of her life. So a (now jobless) Abbi decides to embrace her youth by selling Christmas cards by the side of the street under the name “Young Abbi”—emphasis on the young. She claims her goal is to buy a space heater for her apartment, but it’s clear that she’s also looking for a way to avoid feeling insecure about losing her job and, now, getting older.

Unfortunately her insecurities become harder to ignore after Abbi sets up her card stand and meets Margo (The Librarians’ Jane Curtin), a middle-aged artist who just happens to have the same thermos, “wheely cart,” and Tupperware containers as Abbi. Margo is eccentric but friendly, offering Abbi some lentil soup and a scarf to stuff under her jacket to keep her warm. Of course, a stray lentil lands on Abbi’s nose and the scarf creates sort of a hunchback effect, making Abbi look witchier than ever.

Things take a turn for the worst when 51-year old dermatologist Dr. Elizabeth (Wayward Pines’ Greta Lee) strolls up to Abbi’s stand, not looking a day past 30. Dr. Elizabeth buys a few of Abbi’s cards and, in turn, gives Abbi her business card (which of course has a mirror on the back) in case she ever wants to get her skin treated. Then, as if her day couldn’t get any more upsetting, Abbi’s old crush Jeremy stops by the stand with his adopted child (“he adopted us”) and his soulmate slash co-parent Natalie. Natalie suggests that they buy some of Abbi’s cards for an upcoming Planned Parenthood fundraiser and end up giving her one hundred dollars because, as Jeremy says, they “love helping struggling artists.”

Seeing Jeremy with his perfect co-partner, perfect child, and perfect ass convinces Abbi to spend her shiny new c-note on face injections instead of the space heater. Fortunately Abbi comes to her senses and realizes that she’s a total dream boat, with or without injections—but only after Dr. Elizabeth finishes treating one half of her face. The straight-laced Dr. Elizabeth seems to recognize the absurd lengths women go to in order to look conventionally attractive, admitting that while looking beautiful is her full-time job, for most other women it’s their “second full-time job where they’re losing money.” But it isn’t until the very end of the episode, when Abbi and Ilana find a mysterious note leading them to a witches’ gathering in the woods, that Dr. Elizabeth lets loose and has a little fun, despite the risk of laugh lines.



Ilana had to deal with her SAD in last week’s episode, and now she has to deal with a very different problem—her inability to orgasm. The self-proclaimed “cum queen” hasn’t been able to satisfy herself in months, so she books an appointment with a New Age-y sex expert (or “sexpert”) named Betty who she hopes will “fix” her. Trying to arouse herself with a hot knish certainly hasn’t been working, so what other choice does she have?

Betty tells Ilana to name her vulva (she names it Abbi – sweet, but kind of weird) and tell it how she’s been feeling. Ilana criticizes “Abbi” for being “stubborn” and “withholding,” and eventually full-on screams at her own privates before coming to the sudden realization that she hasn’t cum since November 8 – aka, the date of the U.S. election. Betty assures Ilana that orgasms have been down 140% since Trump was elected (we believe it), but it’s clear that she and Ilana have a lot of work to do.


Betty intently examines Ilana’s vagina with a flashlight as Ilana tries everything—from using a vibrator to fantasizing about an “average-sized dick, “fat titties,” and “hairy taints”—to get herself to cum. It takes a lot of strength and determination, but Ilana eventually pushes away the thought of tiny hands, Mike Pence, and the Electoral College by channelling the grace, beauty, and power of the world’s most inspiring women including Beyonce, Michelle Obama, Malala, Oprah, and Hillary Clinton.

After that, Ilana’s “floodgates” burst open and she actually has to work to stop herself from cumming. Her day gets even better when she visits the witches (including Margo and Betty) with Abbi and dances, howls, and laughs her way through the night.

 Abbi Jacobson directed this episode, and her affection for the Broads really comes through. Abbi and Ilana both experience a lot of self-doubt in “Witches,” but they ultimately realize that despite getting older and experiencing sexual setbacks, they—like the rest of womankind—are hot, smart, independent ladies who shouldn’t let anything stand in their way.



“I think she’s got great taste and like a pixie spirit” – Abbi, referring to American treasure Drew Barrymore

 “I leave a cum trail wherever I go, kinda like a slutty slug” – Ilana, talking to her sex doctor

“Witches aren’t monsters, they’re just women! They’re fucking women who cum and giggle and play in the night. And that’s why everybody wants to set them on fire ‘cause they’re so fucking jealous” – Ilana, preaching the truth

“If witches aren’t real, then who makes all the Kombucha?” – Ilana, preaching even more truth