Broad City season 5, episode 4 recap: Make the Space


Broad City continues its final season with Ilana making an uncomfortable discovery about her roommate and Abbi making bold moves at work.

The episode of Broad City opens with Ilana using a cheese grater to scrape the bottom of her feet when Jaime and his boyfriend, Johnny, come in.

Jaime and Johnny are going to a car show, so Jaime goes to change. Ilana and Johnny sit and talk and Johnny mentions he’s redoing his kitchen. He owns his apartment so he can do that without the possibility of a landlord getting mad, which is shocking to Ilana. It’s a whole new concept for her.

As they’re about to leave, Ilana says something in the apartment smells (worse than normal). Jaime tells her, gently, that it’s probably her disgusting feet. Ilana cops to that and says she’ll have them smelling great before he and Johnny come back.

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At work, Abbi overhears her boss talking about a new window display. Feeling inspired, Abbi butts in and gives her idea for a cityscape window display. Her boss is completely uninterested and says Abbi isn’t ready to do displays. Plus, her boss says, Abbi is too good of a sales associate to be taken off the floor.

Ilana starts smelling around her apartment, unconvinced that the smell is her feet after all. As she tries to the real source of the bad smell, she goes and opens a door at the back of the apartment and screams.

Abbi comes over and Ilana explains that she promised Jaime that she’d never go in his room, but she had to find the smell. As they walk down the hall, Ilana makes it seem like what is behind the door is the worst thing in the world. When she opens the door, it’s revealed that Jaime is a hoarder. And it. Is. Awful.

Abbi and Ilana put on hazmat suits and set to work throwing things out and cleaning the disaster of a room that is Jaime’s. Abbi finds an uneaten bagel with cream cheese, the source of the awful smell. They conclude that Jaime must be in denial about what is going on in his room.

As they take out the trash, Ilana finds one of her old psych textbooks. They look up hoarder and are horrified to find that it says to never move any of the hoarder’s stuff. Thankfully Ilana took a photo of the room (to show her mom), so they work hard to reset everything.

When Jaime and Johnny return, Ilana has candles set up for a calming atmosphere and asks everyone to sit for a sort of therapy session—led by herself.

When Ilana pulls out a pizza box to take notes (like a real therapist), Jaime notices that it’s from his room and he freaks out. While Johnny is initially taken aback by this revelation, he starts to talk to Jaime in Spanish and is incredibly supportive. Jaime starts to open up to him and agrees to talk about his problem.

He turns back to Ilana and says he’s still annoyed that she went in his room. But, he’s willing to proceed with her therapy idea.

Ilana starts to go through her psych text-book for common reasons why people hoard to see if Jaime identifies with any. He confides in them that this all started when he was working to become a citizen.

Before Jaime can talk more, Abbi realizes she ate some cheese that Ilana had put out. Cheese that had clearly been sliced using the same cheese grater that Ilana used on her feet. Abbi starts to gag. Jaime is offended that Abbi is making this emotional moment about herself.

While Ilana talks to Abbi off to one side, Jaime and Johnny again talk to each other in Spanish. Jaime says that hoarding is a sort of self-sabotage. Jaime says that relationships worry him and he feels like he doesn’t deserve happiness and doesn’t deserve to be with Johnny.

Johnny says he identifies with that fear and he has fears of his own. This moment has brought them closer together. They kiss and hold each other as Ilana tells Abbi that she’s being weird about the cheese (that may or may not have a little extra foot cheese).

Jaime thanks Ilana for helping him and getting him to talk about his problem. He says he’s finally ready to take the next step in his relationship: He’s moving to Jersey to live with Johnny.

Ilana freaks out.

Abbi takes Ilana aside and tells her to take her own advice and find a way to make peace with the fact that some things are beyond her control. Ilana takes a breath and hugs Jaime and Johnny and apologizes to them. Deep down, she knew this was coming. She was just scared.

As a group, they all go into Jaime’s room and start parsing through all of his things. Off to one side, Ilana asks Johnny if she was a good therapist. Johnny hedges a bit, but compliments Ilana for creating a space that allowed Jaime to open up.

An idea dawns on Abbi. She needs to make her own space at work for her art. She’s going to make her window display and she’s going to use some of Jaime’s stuff to do it.

At night, donned in all black, Ilana and Abbi go into Anthropologie and start putting together Abbi’s display. As they work in the window, a drunk guy stumbles by on the phone. The two freeze and pretend to be mannequins in the window as he pees in front of them.

They finally finish the display, a cityscape made of books and newspapers from Jaime’s room. They’re incredibly proud of their work and they fall asleep in the store.

When they wake up in the store, Abbi says she’s completely at peace knowing she finally made space for her art. It doesn’t matter what her boss thinks.

Abbi is promptly (obviously) fired. She’s also banned from all Anthropologies.

Not letting their hard work go to waste, Ilana suggests they take a photo in front of Abbi’s display. As they do, the notice that the rat that has been living in Ilana’s apartment has moved with all of Jaime’s stuff and now lives in the window. Ilana lost two roommates that day.

This episode of Broad City ends with Abbi and Ilana pondering their futures. Abbi wants to continue to find ways to make space for her art and Ilana (with Abbi backing the decision) wants to look into schools to pursue becoming a therapist.

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Will Ilana and Abbi stick to this course? Will the end of the final season of Broad City be the first step in whole new lives for Abbi and Ilana? Or will they wind up going back to their old ways? Let us know all of your Broad City thoughts in the comments.