BEVERLY HILLS — When the fourth season of Broad City premieres on Sept. 13, its characters, who supported Hillary Clinton in Season 3, will be grappling with the realities of a Donald Trump presidency — but audiences won't be hearing Trump's name. The stars and creators of the Comedy Central series, Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer, decided to treat the president's name like a curse word and bleep it out of the show.
"We just got to a point where, in real life...we're talking about Trump and it, like, sounds so gross every day, saying it so many times. We just didn't want to share airtime. He's got enough," Glazer said at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in Beverly Hills on Tuesday. "I also don't even want to hear the word."
"Everyone we know, this is a thing that's happening right now [so] this is happening in the other Abbi and Ilana's lives," Jacobson said of her and Glazer's Broad City characters. "This is something they're going to be talking about all the time. This is existing. For us to not be talking about it as friends in the show would have been insane. It would have felt wrong."
Jacobson and Glazer themselves were staunch Clinton supporters — the former presidential candidate even appeared as herself in Season 3 of Broad City. But the "audio joke," as they called it, wasn't always part of their plan for Season 4 because, when they began to write it in May 2016, a Trump victory didn't seem likely. After Jacobson and Glazer took a hiatus to work on various projects and reunited post-election to work on Season 4, they had to figure out how to weave Trump's win into the fabric of their show.
Broad City inherently has an "intersectional feminist message," they said at TCA, because they are its stars, writers, and creators — and they feel they have an obligation to continue using the show as a social and political platform now more than ever. "I think you can see in the industry right now, everybody's message is becoming clear," Glazer said. "Because if you aren't talking about the political landscape, that's kind of something. ... It's not casual. And if you're going to talk about it, you have to clearly state your beliefs and where you stand ethically or politically."