The ‘Broad City’ SXSW Panel Was Hilarious and Emotional as We Say Goodbye to the Series

Broad City
Credit: Michael Loccisano / Getty Images for SXSW

How will it end!? The final 3 episodes of the ground breaking comedy, ‘Broad City’ are coming. The next episode airs this Thursday but a select few of us at SXSW were treated to all 3 of the last episodes early! While we can’t talk about what we saw, I will say it felt like a gratifying ending to a series that grew out of Youtube. A true “start at the bottom now we here!” ride for the comedy duo and their team. The comedy series has a cultural impact like few comedy series before it. So much so it spawned its own vocabulary and sex toy line.

The screenings were followed by an hour Q&A session that was hosted by Comedy Central President Kent Alterman. It was an endearing and emotional Q&A from the beginning but was also filled with laughs and inspiration for the audience.

Abbi Jacobson, started the Q&A off by thanking Comedy Central’s President Kent Alterman for giving them a chance to do things there way and giving the series a chance to grow organically.

JACOBSON: “Truly, we would not have been able to do this without you. You (Alterman) fought for this show so hard. You really did.” Comedy Central has really created a space for us to completely go nuts. Literally kind of.”

GLAZER: “To go crazy and be funny, but also to be real and deep and vulnerable on Comedy Central. It’s crazy ya know. It’s ground breaking. Kent you helped us have the team we wanted with Paul W. Downs and Lucia Aniello who were really our partners in making this. Like Abby just said, the defining thing in your life. It’s like really insane. Like in my life – not just in my career – in my life. This has been a third of my life, this project. It’s wild and unique. I’m so glad that your my partner in this” said Ilana Glazer. Which drew a warm response from the crowd as it became a bit of an emotional event.

How does it feel to know it’s all coming to an end?

ALTERMAN: “There is so much to go into, I need to revel in this moment a little more.” said Alterman. “It struck me while watching them what an incredible experience this was to see it with this crowd and see the last three in a row was really gratifying. I think the most profound experiences are generally infused with the possibility of intense sadness and unbridal joy at the same time which is what it felt to me. I’m curious if this experience was any different than you expected or thought it would be?”

JACOBSON: “It’s hard to process. We finished editing the show on Monday. So we are very much still “on it.” I don’t know I guess I couldn’t even think about what this might be like.”

GLAZER: “I couldn’t even have expectation because its a trip. It’s a fucking trip. Then you meditate and let it pass through you. What can you do? It (like) to huge. There are no words, there are to many things. Light and dark. Beautiful and ugly. We gotten to explore ourselves through the show. I can’t believe it.” Ilana said regarding the realization it is all coming to an end.

Do you think you made the right decision to end the show?

GLAZER:“I feel more and more validated actually over time and I feel like we grew with our audience and this is part of it. It would be strangling to hold onto this beautiful, spontaneous world and these characters. We tried to capture something and we did it. To go beyond that would be perverting it.”

There are so many ways you could have ended it – could you talk through the process a little bit?

GLAZER: “I feel like we kind of always knew – vaguely. And we also knew when they started growing (as characters) we out. We knew it. We knew about it inside the arch-wise and writing it. We found it over time.”

JACOBSON: “People move away and thats okay. Its just shifting what it was. Things can’t stay the same forever. ‘I just get scared – of course someone leaves.’ But that’s what happens in reality. We kind of wanted to show that Abby and Illana in the show still exists but in a different way.”

 

How much of the characters are a part of you and your friendship?

GLAZER: “It is deep. It feels bold. Vulnerable and silly. It’s like a long distance relationship. It’s all about time and work.”

JACOBSON: “You know, once we knew the show was going to end, we give those characters really important part of ourselves, at the end of it we are not together anymore. We won’t be together anymore. The end of the show was such a meta experience for us to say goodbye to us too. It was just such an intense experience.”

GLAZER: “Now that the end is on the horizon I’m seeing it as art and not just this personal therapy vehicle. Its an important growth that I needed.”

 

The Q&A event was something truly special for fans looking for closure to the series. Not only did we get to see the final 3 episodes early but we also got to witness a great conversation to close our the series. It was topped off with a special appearance by Hannibal Burress who appeared in the audience at the end of the Q&A to ask a silly question about the twerking choreography.

You can catch the final 3 episodes on Comedy Central starting this Thursday.

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