Tag Archives: Staci Greenbaum

Turning Two with Broad City: Abbi, Ilana and Me

17 Mar

TV Ate My Wardrobe turns two next month and with this comes far too much introspection and anxiety when contemplating what I have/haven’t done since its inception. Carving out a corner of one’s own is a daunting task when the internet has already been chopped up in every way imaginable and if there’s one show to aid optimism rather than feed my hypercritical side it is Broad City. Yesterday I wrote about the notion of faking everything on Girls and while the two shows are of course very different the location and age/gender of the protagonists leads to automatic comparisons. The reason I bring it up is because Abbi and Ilana aren’t so much faking anything and instead they are taking the opportunities they have and running with them even if this results in falling down a hole in a park or smashing a very expensive mirror. 

Broad City 2.08There are a lot of things to write about Broad City this season and for some inexplicable reason I’ve been experiencing a kind of block with what direction to take this piece in. The garbled notes this post started as looked a little something like this:


Drew Barrymore impression

Lady friendship


Body confidence


Kelly fucking Ripa


Analyze this if you will and the one somewhat cohesive element is that every single thing on that list is something you can derive a lot of joy from and Broad City’s appeal lies in how much fun is to be had by the characters on screen and from watching it.

Role model is a term which suggests living the ‘right’ way and rather Abbi and Ilana (both Wexler/Abrams and Glazer/Jacobson) are showing how to live your best life whether its sitting on the couch falling into the occasional internet hole or trying to progress with your dream job or even your dreamish one. It is telling a different story of your twenties which doesn’t necessarily rely on falling in love or making a buttload of money; if you’ve got your best friend by your side and a day of unplanned adventure whether that’s finding the Narnia of parties or skating to a dog wedding this is all you need in that moment. Your twenties is not just for the daily grind of figuring it out but having someone to do this with.

Broad City 2.05It doesn’t really feel like there is anything else quite like Broad City on TV particularly in regards to sex-positive storylines such as Abbi’s pegging experience and Ilana’s encounter with a woman who looks a whole lot like her last week (Alia Shawkat shout out). These aren’t portrayed as A Very Special Episode BIG DEAL encounters nor is Abbi and Ilana’s sexuality played just for laughs. Things go right, things go wrong and the other is always just a phone call or video chat step away for all or none of the advice they might need.

The clothes worn on screen is a big part of who we are at TV Ate My Wardrobe and Broad City’s costume design features an endless stream of crop/vest tops, funky bras and leggings making this a summer show for the ages. Ah yes Broad City shoots in the sunnier months so the warmer climate attire reads a little odd while I’m up to my eyeballs in knitwear, but it also plays into the wish fulfillment aspect. Abbi and Ilana don’t just excel at all things casual as they kill it whenever they have a fancier affair to attend whether its Abbi rewearing her “Fattest Asses” dress of glory (because this is what people do) or Ilana’s shiva outfit in “Knockoffs” (a personal favorite of mine and one that also incorporates the top Ilana wore in “Fattest Asses”).


One of TV Ate My Wardrobe’s regular features is “The Wish List” and generally everything featured on there would either fall into the splurge or ‘there is no way I could ever afford this’ category. With Broad City the outfits come from places within Abbi and Ilana’s means and recently costume designer Staci Greenbaum spoke to Flavorwire mentioning where they shop “We tend to do a lot of H&M, Topshop, Forever 21. We do thrift stores. We do Beacon’s Closet sometimes, as you saw.” The dress Abbi wore in “Coat Check” when she went to Kelly Ripa’s to return her jacket is from H&M and it is something this Jane the Virgin post touched on; after almost two years of writing about the clothes we see on screen I can tell you it makes a difference when you see a character wearing something that is fancy affordable rather than a gorgeous, but crazy expensive item.

Broad City 2.09Style and figure wise I am far more Abbi than Ilana as the thought of wearing either a crop top or shorts has me running for the hills. The body confidence of both women is something to celebrate as we’ve seen both each of them shed their clothes this season – with blur bars – from Abbi’s Lady Gaga naked apartment dance to Ilana’s modeling in Abbi’s life drawing class. And what about Val? Abbie’s blackout drunk alter ego and the moment that made me scream the most (so far) this season. So unexpected, so amazing and the perfect way to deal with Ilana’s FOMO.

Broad City ValCheesy sounding sentiment it might be but there is something incredibly inspiring about Broad City and the two women behind the show and in front of the camera; I am proud of what this website has achieved so far but I know there is still the Narnia of parties out there and my Val moment is yet to come. When I feel like garbage and in one of those feeling worthless spirals I know a Broad City pick me up will help resolve the funk and give a push in the right direction. And before I spill too much all over the page I want to close on one of another season 2 highlight moments from and why I heart Abbi and Ilana so hard. It’s just like how Abbi feels about Drew Barrymore.

Abbi and Ilana’s Best Broad City Style Moments

25 Mar

The first season of Broad City comes to a close tomorrow (Wednesday 26) and it’s going to be a strong contender for best of 2014 (yes we’re only a quarter of the way through the year). We talk about TV in comparison terms all the time – the “it’s like x meets y” mantra – and thanks to the setting and gender of its stars Girls became the instant benchmark. Broad City is very much its own show with Abbi and Ilana paving the way for a brand new kind of voice; one that doesn’t feel trapped by general comedic conventions. It helps of course Broad City has been going since 2010 through their web series and this is an extension of those characters – I’m so happy to see the denim vest print t-shirt made the leap.  Even with this early start, Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer’s show took time to go from what it was to what it is now and as it’s the season finale (it’s already been picked up for a second season) I want to celebrate this show by taking a look at all the incredible style moments.

Broad City 1.02 t-shirt denim vest printHere at TV Ate My Wardrobe costume and style is something that stands out when watching TV and the costume designer Staci Greenbaum has gone for isn’t all that different from the original web series. From all of the wish lists and posts on TV costuming there are many character closets I would like to pore over and share; quite often when I find out how much an item of clothing costs it’s clear that it is out of my budget. With Broad City it doesn’t feel this way and Greenbaum tells The Cut this is her aim “We try to keep it real-real not TV-real, you know what I mean?” The characters don’t have a crazy amount to spend on clothes so neither does Greenbaum.

Outfits are repeated and Abbi’s boots are on the more expensive end, but she wears them constantly. Same goes for her brown shoulder bag; shoes and bags tend to be where I spend more money on a single item as these are items you use daily. Ilana hasn’t met a pair of short shorts she doesn’t like and Abbi is all about the Lindsay Weir army style jackets. Both use layering to maximum effect and while casual attire accounts for about 75% of their wardrobe, they’re not timid when it comes to dressing for an occasion.

Here are some of my favorite looks from season 1:

Broad City 1.01 fursThey didn’t get paid for their humiliating cleaning experience in the pilot, so they paid themselves in furs, fancy looking booze and hats. I mean who wouldn’t?!

Broad City 1.01Also from the pilot and the many layers that are required for the sometimes cold New York City climate. Ilana’s brown leather jacket is one of her most worn items and it has plenty of space for any office equipment she wants to exchange – no liquid money, plenty of bartering power.

Broad City 1.03 judith lightA shirt the size of a napkin might not be considered as appropriate work attire, nor are the boy shorts or ripped jeans. Judith Light doesn’t seem to mind and neither do I.

Broad City 1.04This is their super casual look and the amazing Abbi boots. These outfits go through the ringer in this episode and this is part of the Broad City charm; there’s no vanity here.

Broad City 1.06 lost phoneAbbi is a girl after my own heart with how many stripped items she owns. I wish I could say the same for short shorts, but alas I lack the Ilana confidence (and legs). Maybe one day.

Broad City 1.08 wedding“Destination Wedding” delivers on the fancy frock attire; well for Abbi it does as Ilana thought they were wearing their old cater waiter uniforms. The backpack is what really makes this look.

Broad City 1.08Later Abbi ditches her fish drenched dress and changes into Lincoln’s tux; both are giving off cool as fuck vibes and a trip to a gentlemen’s club called Thrusts is the only course of action.

Broad City blue dressShopping for an exclusive rooftop party outfit is also covered and instead of a super long shopping montage Abbi is happy with the first dress she tries on and yes her ass does look amazing. Here’s Ilana’s cool girl look, complete with a super long fake ponytail – I love how many different looks Ilana can achieve just by altering her hair. Both women are exuding body confidence and it makes me SO HAPPY that this is a thing.

Broad City 1.08 drawstring hoodieSweaters with drawstring ties come in extra handy when your (still unseen) roommate’s boyfriend is going into extreme detail about his masturbation technique that you walked in on the previous day (also poor Julianna Margulies).

Broad City 1.08 Abbi and LincolnIt’s pretty cool before it’s over Abbi’s head as well. Ditto the red bag and Lincoln who I adore.

Broad City 1.06Ilana is not shy about her sexuality and while I’m a total Ilana and Lincoln shipper, I’m also glad we get to see a woman who is sexually liberated and whose bar pickup outfit is skinny jeans and a vest; there’s nothing too try about this look.

Broad City 1.03 mustard cardiganMore stripes and Abbi’s trusty brown shoulder bag, plus I haven’t met a mustard cardigan I don’t want. This is one of the many outfits that looks like someone on Abbi’s income would wear.

Broad City 1.09 balloonsIlana’s rage face while holding balloons is perfect (she is finding out if she could have herpes so the rage is understandable) and this is an extension of Ilana’s short shorts collection, this time with a pair of mini dungarees. This outfit is topped off with Ilana’s staple brown leather jacket and the repeat piece of clothing I love the most.

I will leave it to Abbi and Lincoln to show how happy this show and the costuming make me.




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