Broad City Recap 5.4: Ilana Helps Jaimé Overcome His Hoarding

by Gary Catig

Ilana is in the middle of her delicate foot care process removing bunions and calluses with a cheese grater. Jaimé and his new boyfriend, Johnny. Before the couple head out again, Ilana begins to smell something really nasty in the apartment but her roommate chalks it up to her nasty feet.

[*Spoilers For 5.4 Ahead!]

Meanwhile, Abbi wants to incorporate more art into her job at Anthropologie. She’s hoping to design the window display. Afterall, she has more creative ideas than her boss’ theme of “Birds”. Unfortunately, she is too good at her job as a sales associate and they can’t risk losing her from the floor. Frustrated, Abbi leaves work.

After completing her foot regiment, Ilana decides to investigate the foul smell in the apartment. It’s emanating from Jaimé’s room and when she opens the door, she’s frightened but what she sees. Her roomie is a hoarder. Her and Abbi begin to clean and tidy up the room and discover the source, a moldy everything bagel with cream cheese. After reading it could be dire if they move possessions without consent, they return everything back to normal.

When Jaimé returns home, Ilana stages an intervention. Using her psych textbooks from college as a reference, she plays therapist to help her roommate overcome his hoarding. He admits it began to help cope from the stress of his citizenship status. It’s even worse now since he’s started seeing his boyfriend and he uses it to self-sabotage the relationship. Johnny is also scared of their future but wants them to be scared together. The two lovebirds decide to move in together.

Abbi takes the initiative and decorates the display case at work. She even uses much of Jaimé’s old stuff as materials. She sneaks into the store late at night with Ilana and creates a stylish window décor. They spend the night so Abbi can be there in the morning to see her boss’ reaction. However, she doesn’t share Abbi’s enthusiasm and fires her for putting actual garbage in the window. Despite losing her job, Abbi enjoys making art and still wants to pursue it in her free time. To do so, she needs a stable day job that pays the bills. Ilana’s also soul searching and feels accomplished in helping her roommate deal with his issues. She’s considering going back to school to become a therapist.  

There comes a time in every young person’s life when they’re ready to grow up and take life more seriously. Abbi doesn’t want anyone to stifle her art anymore and wants to do it on her own terms. As much as she loves art, she won’t let it affect her life negatively. She can do both work on her passion and a steady job. Ilana seemed in her element as she helped Jaimé resolve his mental illness. She might not have always said the right things or acted professionally but she provided a safe space where he could speak openly. Good for her for wanting to pursue a graduate degree. As both took a step towards becoming adults it is still to be seen if they continue or if it was all empty talk.

Other interesting episode notes:

  • Ilana is still politically active with signs in her apartment that read “Defend Dissent” and “I Love My Immigrant Neighbors”.
  • Jaimé isn’t the only roommate Ilana loses as Rat Bastard from season 3 also leaves and is found in Abbi’s display case.

Broad City airs Thursdays at 10:00 pm on Comedy Central.

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