Fans were left yearning for more earlier this year when Broad City bowed out following its fifth and final season. Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer’s New York-set sitcom was an all-too-rare female-fronted comedy series with a sense of humor that jumped between surreal and painfully relatable.
Broad City fans needn’t be too devastated that it’s gone, though, because aside from the fact that they can rewatch the show’s 50 episodes over and over again, there are plenty of shows out there with a similar sense of humor and theme of female empowerment. So, here are 10 Hilarious Shows To Watch If You Miss Broad City.
10 The Mindy Project
After leaving The Office, Mindy Kaling wrote herself a starring vehicle called The Mindy Project (which was a working title that stuck) in which she plays a doctor who is looking for love.
The Mindy Project is more concerned with romance than Broad City – or, at the very least, lasting romance as opposed to flings – but they’re both shows with strong female leads that offer audiences a positive portrayal of women. Kaling makes a compelling lead and she has a great supporting cast around her. The first few seasons aired on Fox before moving to Hulu, with a total of six seasons for newcomers to binge.
9 30 Rock
When Tina Fey left her position as head writer at Saturday Night Live, she created a sitcom for NBC called 30 Rock in which she played the head writer of a sketch variety series on NBC, so a lot of the storylines feel autobiographical. But there’s also a lot of absurd situations and political satire.
Fey’s character Liz has to contend with Jack, her conservative new boss, played by Alec Baldwin. Baldwin brings the same brash Republican attitude to Jack that he has brought to a different role recently (we all know the role), so the clash of liberal and conservative in 30 Rock is hysterically cartoonish.
Broad City was a show about empowered women trying to make it in the modern world. Veep is similar in that respect, as it tells the story of a female Vice President of the United States as she tries to forge a legacy and win over public opinion in the political field.
But despite the high-powered positions its characters hold and the high-stakes world it’s set in, the characters of Veep are still just as crass and foul-mouthed and absurd as Abbi and Ilana in Broad City. Like Broad City, Veep ended its run this year with a satisfying series finale.
7 Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
The musical genre died out a long time ago, but movies like La La Land and Disney’s live-action remakes of their animated classics are keeping the musical flame alive. On the small screen, Rachel Bloom’s show Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is doing that duty.
It’s a romantic comedy series on The CW that concluded last year with its fourth season and it tells the story of a real estate lawyer who follows her ex-boyfriend back to his hometown in California after bumping into him. The series has the same sharp satirical wit as Broad City – it’s like Broad City with catchy songs.
6 Bob’s Burgers
A lot of the humor in Broad City is quite naturalistic, with the gags organically arising from normal conversations and not from forced setups. In that sense, it’s a lot like Bob’s Burgers, a Fox animated sitcom that Abbi Jacobson has actually guest-starred on. The comedy in Bob’s Burgers is not mean-spirited.
It’s about a positive home environment, with parents who share the responsibility of their kids equally and support their kids’ creative endeavors. It’s a more realistic portrayal of a modern family and it’s a breath of fresh air compared to the archaic family values on display in The Simpsons and Family Guy.
Last year, Matt Groening brought his third animated series after The Simpsons and Futurama to Netflix. Disenchantment is Groening’s first show with a female lead – a princess who happens to be played by Abbi Jacobson – and like Broad City, it carries a strong feminist message.
It’s set in medieval times, in a fantasy world a lot like Game of Thrones, where the princess’ aversion to marriage, independent thinking, and alcoholism don’t gel with her conservative father. She hangs out with an elf and a demon. Disenchantment’s gag rate is as rapid as Groening’s previous shows, so a laugh is never too far away.
Insecure is Issa Rae’s sharp, insightful HBO comedy adapted from her acclaimed web series Awkward Black Girl. The HBO version has the same perceptive take on racial and gender issues that the web series has, but with a more cinematic feel.
Rae herself summed up the universal appeal of the series pretty well herself before it premiered: “We’re just trying to convey that people of color are relatable. This is not a hood story. This is about regular people living life.” The show currently has three seasons under its belt, with a fourth on the way to air later this year.
3 Parks and Recreation
Amy Poehler was the one who spotted Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer’s web series and helped them to shepherd it to television. She was credited as an executive producer on the show. So, no Broad City fan’s watchlist is complete without Parks and Recreation, the show that carried Poehler to stardom after she departed Saturday Night Live.
As a workplace-based mockumentary, Parks and Rec feels like a pale imitation of The Office in its first season, but that was just because they hadn’t figured out Poehler’s character, Leslie Knope. In the years following, Leslie would become one of television’s greatest feminist icons – and she’s surrounded by a hilarious supporting cast, too.
2 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has a female lead in New York City, just like Broad City, but the big distinction is that Kimmy was kidnapped by a doomsday cult when she was a teenager. In the first episode, the girls are discovered living in a bunker when Kimmy is in her twenties and they all get taken to New York for an appearance on a TV talk show.
After that, Kimmy decides to stay in New York. She finds an apartment with a struggling actor and has to suddenly face adulthood and take on the world after years in the bunker. It’s a brilliant show from the mind of Tina Fey.
Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s show Fleabag has the sensibility and message of female empowerment to make it Britain’s answer to Broad City. Waller-Bridge’s title character is the focus of the series, with all the supporting characters around her contributing to her narrative, so there’s no hilarious double act like Abbi and Ilana.
However, it is just as accurate a portrayal of modern women, and she does break the fourth wall a lot, which creates a kind of double act: Fleabag as she presents herself to the people around her and Fleabag as she tells the audience her innermost thoughts. It’s a brilliantly written, brilliantly acted, innovative comedy series.