Summer in New York City can be both the best and the worst thing. The excitement about being able to hang outside and enjoy the warmth quickly morphs into a hatred of being sticky on the subway platform, sweating on the sidewalks, being catcalled in shorts, and having air conditioners drip on you. Broad City understands the plight of summer heat, especially the biggest one: Getting a cheap air conditioner.
But first let’s tackle that amazing, too-close-to-home, Snowpiercer-inspired cold open with the girls traveling through subway cars. There’s the relief of rushing to a train and just making it, which is a small victory but you have to take whatever victories you can get with the MTA, but it’s immediately followed by witnessing all of the disgusting people and things that litter the subway. Abbi and Ilana squeeze through oversized yoga mats, the person selling cotton candy, the disgusting weirdo clipping his toenails, the couple furiously making out, and the confusing empty subway car which has literal shit in it. But they finally make it to the back of the train… only to realize they should’ve been in the front the whole time. Win some, lose some — that’s Broad City.
The small (but big) adventure in “In Heat” is Abbi and Ilana’s quest to get a cheap air conditioner. During a literal hot date with Male Stacy (a fun cameo by Seth Rogen) in an un-air conditioned apartment, Stacy passes out from the heat during sex, prompting Abbi to wonder whether or not this constitutes rape. Her worry only increases when she later makes out with a guy who turns out to be only sixteen-years-old, prompting her to wonder if she’s a sexual predator. There is no straight-man in this friendship; both girls are out of their minds and it’s wonderful. There’s also some recurring talk about rape culture (Abbi’s increasing worry, Ilana discussing it at dinner) which is refreshing because it’s done so in a funny way, one where Glazer (the writer) is clearly aware of what constitutes rape culture but Ilana (the character) is more about the buzz of the phrase.
They go to Abbi’s sanctuary, a Bed Bath and Beyond where she knows every employee and even has funny little handshakes for each one. They buy an air conditioner only to have it stolen while they temporarily drift away to try and hail a cab. Their second attempt is also thwarted when they get a broken air conditioner from an old not-friend played by Kumail Nanjiani. Their next attempt is to go back to Ilana’s old dorm to retrieve the air conditioner that she left there in college. Posing as RAs, they raid the guys’ dorm for contraband (beer, a bong, weed that Ilana left in the wall) and con their way into getting back the AC.
In one of those beautifully shot weed-smoking sequences that Broad City often features, the girls then get amazingly high with the boys (leading Abbi to the aforementioned underaged makeout session) before taking the air conditioner.
In the background of the episode is Ilana worrying about Lincoln’s birthday because she had no idea this was the point of their dinner celebration. She frets about what to get him as a gift because she doesn’t truly know him since they mostly just get high and hook up. At the end she gives him a meal card stolen from one of the college students which he actually loves because a) he works near a dining hall and b) he’s so honored that she’d steal for him. It’s really cute, and they’re cemented as my second favorite couple on television — behind Abbi and Ilana, of course.
The episode ends with Abbi and Stacy dancing around, enjoying the new cool of her room with the air conditioner until it promptly falls out of the window when Stacy becomes startled by the cutest cat in the world. It’s so indicative of the girls’ ongoing struggle in Broad City: a small accomplishment celebrated, only to have it yanked away in the funniest way. Welcome back, Broad City. You’re still the best.