TV: The new ‘Smash’ is sure to be a hit: Part 1

By Meryl Gottlieb| mg986611@ohiou.edu| @buzzlightmeryl
Smash airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on NBC
Rating: 5/5

smash premiere

My prayers have been answered… the return of Smash was everything the critics said it would be: good. Not only was the double feature chock full of original songs that were all marvelous, it also got right to the point in ending the things we hated from season one. Another high note, Ellis (Jaime Cepero) was nowhere to be seen – my biggest wish come true.

A lot of information was given in these first two episodes since the writers had a lot of cleaning up to do, so stick with me. Hence why there is two parts to this review.

Starting off the best way possible, we see a new song from Bombshell, “Cut, Print… Moving On,” performed by Karen (Katharine McPhee). Just like some of my favorite musicals, this opening number drew me in from the get-go. From here on out, it only gets better.

After a tumultuous storyline last season, Ivy’s (Megan Hilty) future with Bombshell is not entirely stable, and with Karen as the lead, she is definitely right in worrying since she slept with Karen’s now ex-boyfriend Dev (Raza Jaffrey).

Eileen (Anjelica Huston) is set on having Bombshell be on Broadway ASAP, and she wants it at the St. James Theatre, a home to many successful productions, such as Oklahoma! and The Producers. Those are some big shoes to fill.

Karen has moved in with Ana (Krysta Rodriguez), who is the kind of character I adore. Spunky. Stylish, which is a big deal if I notice that. More importantly, I feel like she will add a lot of much-needed humor to the show. You go Wednesday Addams!

Two words: JENNIFER HUDSON!! I knew I would love her performance as Veronica Moore, but I never anticipated how far that love would go. Her voice and her style in “Mama Makes Three” was flawless. As an already famous actress, Veronica will serve as a mentor to rising star Karen. Do whatever with this storyline as long as J-Hud is on the show!! Seriously.

I must say, I am quite over the Eileen-Jerry (Michael Cristofer)-money issue; it’s getting a little old. Though it does become more prevalent in these two episodes, I still just want it to end.

Ivy talks to Julia (Debra Messing) about her future in the show, and Julia tells her that she needs to apologize to Karen but for the right thing – why she did what she did. Grace, I didn’t know you could give such great advice; did Will tell you that?

The critics did enjoy Bombshell, especially Karen’s performance and Tom’s (Christian Borle) music, but they slammed Julia, for some reason that wasn’t fully explained.

Tom sees Frank (Brian d’Arcy James) with another woman. The second I saw this happened, I just thanked everyone. I was so happy this terrible extraneous storyline would be put to an end.

However, Frank is terribly upset about everyone in the show knowing about his and Julia’s marriage issues. Oh come on. You’re asking for everyone to hate you.

Tom tells Julia about what he saw, so she confronts Frank. He acts in a way that I can only properly describe with offensive terms so I hope that painted a picture for you. He starts yelling at Julia about how nothing happened with that woman, and how she of all people had no right to accuse him. Are you kidding me? I just hate his character.

Anyway, their marriage is over. Yay.

Eileen had secured the St. James Theatre and prepared a party. However, the proprietor of the theater doesn’t show, so she has Karen and Veronica duet to “On Broadway.” Let’s just say it was amazing, and it was even a cover. Did I mention how much I think the show needs to keep Jennifer Hudson forever?

The whole Derek (Jack Davenport)-Karen and Derek-Ivy love triangle is at stake tonight when Ivy seems quite jealous of Derek and Karen’s close relationship.

After acting like a scared dog the entire episode, Ivy apologizes to Karen. Meanwhile, Karen continues to be unlikeable for the premiere. But seriously. She just seems unemotional and Kristen Stewart-like. Ugh.

Apparently, the money Eileen used to fund the show was illegal and now the government has halted any progress on Bombshell. I did not see that coming.

Because they want to toy with my dream of having a gay best friend, Julia moves in with Tom since she is now divorced and Sam (Leslie Odom Jr.) has a gig with a Book of Mormon tour. I just want that to be my life! (not the divorced part, just living with my gbf)

Ivy auditions for a small ensemble role by performing “Don’t Dream It’s Over.” The song just fits so perfectly with her situation. I’m thoroughly impressed by the use of the covers in tonight’s episode.

At a bar, Karen sighs over losing out on Bombshell. She meets bartenders Jimmy (Jeremy Jordan) and Kyle (Andy Mientus). Kyle is incredibly sweet, and I honestly think he and I would get along perfectly. Karen overhears Jimmy singing his own song, “Broadway, Here I Come,” which he wrote for his and Kyle’s musical.

I cannot stress enough about how much I loved this performance. This song has to be one of the best songs the writers have ever created. Not to mention the fact that Jordan’s voice is purely phenomenal. Well done.

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Plus, he’s not too hard on the eyes either.

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