Another week, another ho hum episode of Smash. While season two has been much more enjoyable then season one, there are still moments and plot points that make me shake my head. At least in this episode we get another killer song from Hit List to add to our playlists.
This week the Bombshell crew are trying to deal with Eileen’s (Angelica Huston) decision to side with Jerry (Michael Cristopher) and Tom (Christian Borle) to return to the show’s first book. Of course both Julia (Debra Messing) and Derek (Jack Davenport) are not happy about this, so much so that Derek ends up quitting the show. What a diva!! Of course it doesn’t help that Tom undermines Derek’s position by directing one of the numbers. Everyone ends up impressed with the number, prompting Eileen to suggest Tom take-up the newly vacant director position. I like the idea of Tom directing the show, even though it’s obvious that this will not go as smoothly as expected and will likely create more tension in his already touchy relationship with Julia (which is a shame because they really are the heart of the show).
Meanwhile Karen (Katharine McPhee) is juggling Bombshell rehearsals and rehearsals for Hit List’s debut at the Fringe. Or she is juggling…until Jerry tells her she can’t do both. And he tells her this six hours before the big Fringe debut. This obviously does not go well with Kyle (Andy Mientus) and Jimmy (Jeremy Jordan). But can we get their history already? These two are so one-dimensional right now. We need to find out more about their troubled past. It’s not enough to say Jimmy has had some hard times, throw a leather jacket on him and expect me to be okay with him being a jerk all the time. Give me something to chew on. I like these characters, but I am finding both Jimmy and Kyle more and more frustrating because I don’t know anything about them.
Karen also runs into Ellis’ (a thankfully unseen Jaime Cepero) ex-girlfriend who lets it slip that Ellis and Jerry were in cahoots. This gives Karen the balls to defy Jerry and return to Hit List for its final Fringe performance. Derek is there (of course!) and after having a vision of the show, he (of course!) decides to become the director. (Here’s hoping he gets to bring that wind machine with him).
We are also introduced to Scott Welker (the always delicious Jesse L. Martin) who’s interested in helping to produce the show. I am definitely looking forward to this storyline…mostly because it involves Jesse L. Martin, but also because I am really enjoying the songs that we’ve seen from Hit List. The new song is really good, and it fits in perfectly with the great song from a few weeks ago. Definitely something I can imagine – and would want to see – on Broadway.
Finally there Ivy’s (Megan Hilty) storyline, which is still exploring a dramatic musical being played for laughs to acommodate its star, Terry (Sean Hayes). I wish I enjoyed this storyline more. I love Hilty and I love Hayes, they’re both incredible actors, but this storyline is dragging things down.
The biggest problem is Terry. I don’t understand his motivation. He’s a comedic actor making his Broadway debut in a dramatic play. Last week he went off his meds but nothing in his demeanor has changed, other than him saying that he hasn’t slept in four days. Then when Ivy gets the big laughs during the press show, he decides to cut her number, only to change his mind when she is honest with him and tells him that the show sucks and he sucks. This makes no sense! I get that he is jealous of Ivy for stealing the spotlight, but don’t have him do a complete 180 a scene later just because he finds Ivy’s honesty refreshing. I mean really?
On a side note, I seriously think that Smash could become a new Rocky Horror Picture Show. Everytime they say the name “Ellis”, you have to hiss at the TV. And every time Karen speaks you have to yawn. And every time there’s clunky dialogue, you have to take a shot (this should help to make it easier to listen to). Try it next week, you’ll see how much fun it can be.
What did you think of this week’s episode? Do you think Karen will leave Bombshell to join Derek, Jimmy and Kyle on Hit List? Are you hoping to get more background info on Jimmy and Kyle? Am I the only one annoyed with Terry’s character? Finally, thoughts on NBC shipping the show off to die on Saturday nights?! Sound off below.
Smash airs Tuesday nights (for now) at 10pm EST on NBC. It moves to Saturdays starting April 6