Hillary Clinton appears in this week’s episode of Broad City, but neither Abbi Jacobson or Ilana Glazer went so far as to endorse Clinton’s candidacy in the episode.
At a SXSW panel on Saturday, Glazer and Jacobson explained that the writers conceived the storyline—Ilana working Clinton’s campaign—about a year ago. “We got the idea that Ilana’s character would find the Hillary campaign in some way and be a part of it,” said Jacobson. “The episode doesn’t require Hillary.”
After Comedy Central contacted Clinton’s campaign reps, with an added good word in from Broad City’s executive producer Amy Poehler, the script was sent and approved. Clinton herself teased the appearance last December and the stars have been talking about it for months.
“Going from finding out she and her campaign wanted to do it, to filming it was really had to believe,” said Glazer at SXSW.
There’s no shortage of Clinton cosigns in Hollywood. Lena Dunham is practically Clinton’s running mate, while Shonda Rhimes and her shows’ leading ladies ran a pro-Hillary ad during last week’s broadcasts. Broad City seems to focus more on the idea of geeking out over Clinton’s presence than stamping her as a candidate, which is something Ilana would actually do.
According to Jacobson, “The scene is Abbi and Ilana freaking out meeting Hillary Clinton, so we just got to freak out. We freaked out super hard to her face.”
Still, the episode doesn’t appear to endorse Clinton as a candidate. When a SXSW audience member asked why Broad City is supporting Clinton even though their characters seem more like they’d be Bernie Sanders Stans, Jacobson said they’re purposefully not choosing sides on the show.
“We were not trying to make a political statement. That’s not our show, really—‘let’s make a political stance here.’ It’s really more that this is something that Ilana’s character would do,” she said. “Even regardless of where we stand—and we love Hillary—Hillary is such an iconic figure. These girls being around her is not an everyday thing. That’s how we felt being around her. It was like, ‘Oh, this is a different world.’”
Glazer adds, “Because she’s this icon. We’re trying to make really good TV. I think you’ll watch the episode and think you’ll agree that it’s a great episode of TV.”
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