Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Smash: Trouble Ahead

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

Time is ticking! We're now under two weeks until the workshop performance and the script isn't even finished... so there's plenty of tension amongst the characters this episode! I was most surprised that there wasn't much news on the Eileen front, aside from losing her assistant to Jerry, of course. I understand that Lyle is financing the bulk of it, but has she nothing else to do? With little focus on Eileen, none on Jerry, and only a couple of scenes with Derek, a large portion of this episode looks at the respective home lives of Julia and Tom. With Frank away (where? taking classes to re-certify his teaching credentials?), Julia not only must parent alone, but she also must fight temptation (though we all know that's there anyway). Tom, on the other hand, is continuing to date a guy who seems all too good for him... and that's really all there is to say about that. On the whole, this episode really just sets up a lot of future actions... there's not much there on its own. Maybe Eileen will steal Ellis from Tom. Maybe Leo's involvement with "bad kids" will impact the adoption process. Maybe Ivy just isn't cut out to play Marilyn. Maybe Derek really does like Karen better for the role. Maybe Tom isn't destined to have a great romance. Maybe Karen's lies will keep Dev from becoming a Press Secretary. Maybe Julia's involvement with Michael is only going to get deeper. My guess is that these questions will begin to be answered soon!

Smash "Let's Be Bad" (S01E05): [First, let's look at the show itself.] Derek asks Karen to work on a Marilyn dance, which aggravates Ivy. [of course.] The next day, when Ivy doesn't use vibrato like Marilyn would, Derek demands Karen demonstrate "Happy Birthday, Mr. President," which solidifies Karen's grasp of the style. Derek tells Karen to coach Ivy, which neither girl wants. Karen tries to be nice, but Ivy just tells the "chorus girl," not to "get ahead of yourself." [whatever.] The following rehearsal, there's some question of Ivy's ability. At the rehearsal after that, Ivy misses the same cue twice, cries a little, then performs a number for which almost everyone claps at the end. [We see a fully-produced scene of Marilyn's pill days... it's okay.] Derek leaves the room after the song, further distressing Ivy. After chatting with some friends, Ivy decides to find Derek's apartment... drunk. He asks her to stay over, but she needs to keep her feelings out of the rehearsal hall. [yada yada nothing.]

[Onward to the drama! First, Tom & Julia.] Tom has another date with John, a lawyer who invites Tom back to his place after dinner. Tom declines, claiming tiredness. [mmmhmmm.] Just as John asks whether this relationship is going anywhere physically, Tom gets a call. It's Leo, who has been arrested and can't reach his parents. [interesting that he'd call Tom. I wonder what that's like... being on such a personal basis with your parent's coworker...] Leo brings John and they get Leo out without an actual arrest - while he was "loitering" in Central Park, he wasn't using a vaporizer of pot like his friend was. [kids these days!] Tom stays with Leo until Julia comes home... from dinner with Michael. [well, I think I know where THIS is going...!] Julia is pissed, yells at Leo, and grounds him. [no surprise there.] Unfortunately, she soon learns that this could affect the adoption, so she talks with Leo about not hanging out with anyone breaking laws. [easier said than done, lady.] Michael comes to Julia's and Leo invites him to stay for dinner. [so you also know actors with whom your parent worked YEARS ago??] Michael tells Leo that he and Julia used to smoke pot when they had a rough rehearsal. [FAIL.] Julia tries hard to just get Michael out of there, but the longer he stays, the more she falls for him, and they wind up kissing in view of Leo. [this is going to blow up in everyone's face. I just hope that Leo yells at his mom for ruining the adoption... because it is now more her fault than his.] Oh, and Tom? He and John do end up being intimate, but both agree that it was an awful experience. [awkward! Does Tom know he's bad in bed? Maybe that's why he was putting it off for so long?]
(Photo by: Patrick Harbron/NBC) 
[On to Karen.] Dev is worried that he won't get a Press Secretary position, so he wants Karen to appear extra-sexy at a work party of his. Unfortunately, she arrives after he does and she can't sit at the same table as her boyfriend - RJ, a colleague of Dev's, is there. Peeved, Karen sits elsewhere and decides to act as if she plays Marilyn in the workshop. [why? it's easy to find out she lied.] She learns that she's flirting with one of Dev's major competitors for the position. [...and that's the end of that? The whole Dev character is rather boring and useless, don't you think? I mean, aside from giving Karen a place to live, what are we doing with him?]

Lastly, we learn that Eileen's assistant is now working for Jerry, so she gets Ellis to help her with some computer stuff. [Ellis is just such bad news!]
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