There’s been so much hype for the Lip Sync Battle between Broad City creators Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer that you’d think it was another Ronda Rousey–Bethe Correia situation. But did it live up to the buzz or just end with a 15-second knockout? We finally got to watch the full performances last night, and we’ll say this: The judges blew the call.
Battle 1: Abbi Jacobson’s “The Humpty Dance” vs. Ilana Glazer’s “Hey Ya”
A good rule of thumb is that a bad karaoke song is going to make a bad lip-sync song. “Hey Ya” is one of those songs that you think is going to kill, but actually it just starts to drag and you’re the fool who is making everyone suffer through this interminable chorus. Well, that’s what’s happening here. Ilana’s style is bouncy, which fits the tempo of the song, but at times, it doesn’t look like she’s extending the notes out. It’s “Hey yaaaaaaaaa, Hey yaaaaaaaaa,” Ilana. Meanwhile, Abbi’s pick of the Digital Underground throwback is slightly more inspired. It’s a more understated performance, and Abbi gets bonus points for difficulty level and authenticity. That is her humpty dance.
Winner: Abbi Jacobson, by a shake of the rump.
Battle 2: Abbi Jacobson’s “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” vs. Ilana Glazer’s “It’s Raining Men”
We have been waiting for some performances in the vein of Divas Live, and this is what we’re talking about. The Dreamgirls’ “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” is a masterful choice. It’s a song that carries its own sense of drama and requires the performer to live up to the song rather than dress it up with the pageantry of backup dancers and props.* We have some quibbles, of course: We’d have liked it if Abbi varied her movement and did more with the mic stand, but this was delightful. In comparison, Ilana’s “It’s Raining Men” was charming, but flimsy.
*Did someone edit this with their feet? There are some inexplicable cutaways.
Winner: Abbi Jacobson, by a floor-length gown.
Overall winner: The show gave the win to Ilana Glazer, but we know that the internet will remember Abbi Jacobson as the true victor.