Smash Premiere Recap: A Tale of Two Marilyns

Smash PremiereSmash pretty much had me at its first teaser preview. After all, an American Idol grad starring in a high-concept drama about a pack of theater types mounting a Marilyn Monroe musical is like Chicken Soup for the Gay TV Junkie’s Soul. But I didn’t commit to setting a series recording till the fictitious Broadway show at the center of the action delivered a showstopping number (featuring the non-Idol contestant, and embedded below) about Marilyn’s first encounter with Joe DiMaggio featuring this sublime lyric: “A baseball diamond is a girl’s best friend.”

In a nutshell, Smash focuses on Julia (Debra Messing) and Tom (Christian Borle), a pair of successful Broadway writing partners planning a hiatus so the former can focus on adotping a baby with her hunky husband Frank. But when Tom’s sexually ambiguous new assistant Ellis (Jaime Cepero) mentions having read a copy of a Marilyn Monroe biography he found on Tom’s bookshelf, the seed of a new show is unexpectedly sown. Hey, they’re just working on a single song, okay? Riiiight. Tom recruits Ivy Lynn (Megan Hilty), an ambitious chorus girl in Julia and Tom’s current hit, Heaven on Earth, to record a demo for “Never Give All the Heart,” a gut-wrenching ballad that Ellis kinda sorta accidentally leaks on a YouTube-type Web site. Before you can say Seven Year Itch, a high-powered producer (Eileen, played by Anjelica Huston) and director (Derek, played by Jack Davenport) are sniffing around the project, a dazzling young ingenue named Karen (Idol grad Katharine McPhee) emereges (along with Ivy Lynn and possibly Scarlett Johansson) as the main contender for the title role, and all of us get treated to a show not quite like anything on television right now. Did we mention Karen has a smoldering hot, super supportive boyfriend named Dev, who works at the Mayor’s office, and overprotective parents who want her to move back to Iowa? Did we mention that even though the previews would have us believe Karen is the one for whom we’re going to root, that Ivy Lynn proves an equally magnetic and sympathetic presence?

The episode ends with a cliffhanger: Karen and Ivy Lynn arriving for callbacks — belting “Let Me Be Your Star” — at the exact same moment. And honestly, if NBC somehow — blashphemy alert —  pulls the plug on Smash before we see how the entire Marilyn musical plays out, then producer Steven Spielberg should be required by law to bring the production to an actual Broadway stage.

NBC’s Smash: 10 Burning Questions Answered!

What I especially loved about the pilot, though, is how every major character got a specific character trait or dilemma or line of dialogue that made me eager to see how his or her story arc will play out:

* Karen, for starters, certainly has some of the “scared bird” innocence that Derek scoffs at during her late-night “callback” in his apartment. But her three-word, five-star brushoff — “not gonna happen” — after her Marilyn-esque “Happy Birthday” prompts Derek to make his unseemly move, proves she possesses the kind of inner flint a central character requires. (That scene of Karen, shaken to the core in Derek’s bathroom, proves McPhee’s got the acting chops necessary for the gig, too.)

* Ivy Lynn, for her part, sold the fictional Broadway show — and Smash itself — with an extraordinary rehearsal of “National Pasttime” (that occasionally took flight as a fully blown production number in the minds of its writers, director, and producer). And that scene of Ivy Lynn, alone in her apartment trying to get her mother to take 30 seconds to get excited about her callback, was a thing of heartbreaking beauty.

* Messing’s Julia is perhaps the most complicated character thus far. She’s clearly a loving wife and mother, but she’s not willing to completely sacrifice her ambitions on the altar of family. When her husband reminds her she was supposed to take a year off to work on their planned adoption of a second child, she doesn’t talk about her own need to write, but rather, her almost scary committment to the character of Marilyn. I loved Julia’s factoid about Marilyn’s final interview — “She said ‘please don’t make a joke out of me.'” — but I’m not sure it bodes for serene sailing in her home life.

* Tom’s backstage encounter with a hot chorus guy whose name he can’t quite remember was a nice foreshadowing that he’s probably not 100 percent in the right in his past feud with Derek. A gay character who’s more than a neutered, saintly sidekick for his straight-lady friend? I say “brrrring it!”

* Okay, yeah, Derek clearly would’ve taken his late-night callback into casting-couch territory, but is it possible that a better performance from his choice for a leading lady was the real endgame in that scene with Karen? It’s an interesting thought, although my gut says to agree with Tom: “He is a terrible human being!”

* This exchange between Eileen and her soon-to-be ex (and Huston’s sublime delivery) is a hint that our not-dead-yet producer will probably be the most quotable character on the show:

Hubby: Bringing up love at a divorce proceeding is childish.
Eileen: Screwing every blonde who opened up her legs to you is also childish.


Honorable mention goes to Eileen’s response to Derek saying he has a hard time getting along with gay men: “That’s an unfortunate position to take in the American theatre.”

Winter TV First Impression: Does NBC’s Smash Hit All the Right Notes?

What did you think of the Smash premiere? (Take our poll below!) Will you tune in for the entire season? And which character was your favorite? Sound off in the comments, and for all my TV recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Darth Pablo says:

    coolest Castle episode ever. oh wait……….i taped this. D’oh!

  2. Kevin H. says:

    The Smash pilot was really awesome. I honestly love Julia and Tom’s assistant–he’s so cute! I’m totally in for the rest of the season. I hope this show starts a trend for great ratings for NBC. This show will definitely help them achieve that.

  3. Sparky says:

    Oh YES – Anjelica Huston, showing the children how it’s DONE.

  4. ladyhelix says:

    Loved it!!
    And did you notice Alex Wong in the big dance number? SYTYCD alum – such fun!!

    • Maggie says:

      alex & thayne from season 4!! he’s in the baseball number in the red v-neck tshirt, you have to really look to see him but he’s definitely in it! and ellenore from season 6 is in the “this season on SMASH promo!”

    • Kate says:

      That’s Alex “Freakin” Wong to those that love us some.

      • DreamRose311 says:

        I had to pause the show and have a minor freak-out and explain to my roommate why. And then call my mom and tell her because she said she wasn’t going to watch the show…
        Alex Wong!! ALEX WONG!!! ALEX “FREAKIN” WONG!!!!!!!!

        • Dave in Long Beach says:

          Ha! I had the exact same reaction. I was thrilled to see Alex back in action. I hope his injuries have healed and I hope the show has the smarts to keep him around in whatever capacity.

  5. Taylah says:

    I am absolutely on “Team Ivy” already. I did not feel Karen’s character was compelling at all, starting by one of the worst lines of the whole episode “Why do I have to be sexy all the time? I wish I was fat!”
    And she did go to Derek’s house in the middle of the night. The fact that she went to a stranger’s house in the middle of the night the day after she met him, Broadway director or not, makes me think she believes she’s too smart and having the director wanting her will eventually give her the role. Of course when this happens later with Ivy, because I’m sure it will, we’ll have to think of it as “wrong”, but here we have the girl we’re supposed to root for doing the same thing.
    However Ivy’s struggle seemed more relatable, she has been fighting for a role like this forever, she is trained and she wants to go for it. I do like that the show seems to give us insight into her back-story too and not just turn her into “the b*tch who wants to take Karen’s role.” I like that she is ambitious and I don’t see how that would be bad, the whole point is that she looks strong but she’s quite fragile (as we can see) and that’s a very Marilyn quality.
    Plus Megan Hilty is just a spectacular Broadway performer and that baseball number was fantastic and I cannot see Katharine McPhee pulling it off with a blonde wig, a fake beauty spot and a red dress. It just feels ridiculous.

    • Sg.Grant says:

      Based on the promos that I’ve seen, and the pilot, which I watched months ago, the true star of the Broadway show will be Karen.
      Though Ivy is definitely going to end up sleeping with the director. It was indicated in the season promo that came with the pilot. I’m curious if there were any reshoots from the pilot to tonight’s episode.

    • Kay says:

      I completely agree.

    • tarc says:

      And I was the reverse. I connected with Karen, and found Ivy’s desperation to be offputting. I am now a huge fan of Hilty, but I think that Karen would make a vastly better Marylin.

    • Sarah says:

      I agree, I realize we are ultimately supposed to be rooting for Karen but Ivy put sooo much work into the production already. I don’t know anything about the business, but I think it’s awful that Ivy even had to audition, let alone now fight so hard for this role that she helped shape.

    • Carl OD says:

      Ivy has had to put in so much more work. I want her to get the part

    • dan says:

      From what I’ve read, by the end of episode two we’ll know who gets the part of Marilyn. However, the other actress will be still be involved in the production (understudy…trying to steal the role).

  6. IKitty says:

    I’m already emotionally invested in this show way more than I wish I was. Just good tv. Though I have a feeling my heart will continue to be broken weekly for Ivy. Megan Hilty is divine.

  7. Sarah says:

    I really liked the first episode and I hope that the rest of the season continues to be just as good. Any thoughts of only watching the first episode are dashed! Loved it, can’t wait for next week.

  8. Rolfe says:

    A+ isn’t an option?

  9. Davey says:

    I have no idea why NBC is pushing Katherine McPhee when Megan Hlity is really the one to watch. The only characters I care about are the songwriting team played by Debra Messing and Christian Borle and the producer played by Angelica Huston.
    Not something I”ll be watching faithfully but I wish it well.

    • KSM says:

      Totally agree, I thought that Megan Hilty truly outclassed Katherine McPhee, who gave a very good performance. Hilty was simply sensational though.

  10. Davey says:

    I have to add I found the way they had the musical numbers in the rehearsal room combined with fantasy like stage numbers to be awkwardly edited. It just didn’t work.

    • champmav says:

      Completely DISagree, the device was effective as a stand-in for the way the imagination of creators/performers enhances even piano rehearsals of big numbers. I’ve often wished other musical shows (Glee) would be more raw/acoustic at the start of a number, then go to the polished/produced version after a couple of bars in the “real” world.

  11. MM says:

    Karen will play Norma Jean and Ivy will play Marilyn. Both will get the part.

    • Brandon R. says:

      Ooh. I like that theory. And it looks plausible too given the ‘season preview’ they had after the show…both Karen and Ivy seem to be in a lot of Marilyn-esque numbers.

    • Annie says:

      That was my first thought, too … but I’m not so sure anymore. It could be misdirection but there were a few things in the extended promos from the iTunes version of the pilot that made it seem like they’re steering into a one-person-wins, one-loses scenario.

  12. OneMightyMike says:

    If I was the producer I would simply pick Ivy for the role of Marilyn Monroe. She looks, acts, and is captures more of her persona…. period.
    If they wanted to make a vehicle for Katharine McPhee (Karen) they should have done a musical about Natalie Wood.

  13. fernando says:

    I liked it, So far my fav. person is Ivy

  14. Joe says:

    If they hitch their forturnes to Katherine McPhee this show will tank. She was unlikable on Idol and she’s even more unlikable since then. She gives off the feeling that it was handed to her more than most people who get to her level in the entertainment industry. I know she’s talented but she’s not likable and likability is what will make Smash a success.
    Hollywood thinks she’s America’s sweetheart because they have their collective heads up their rears. It will show in the ratings if she becomes the “star” of their show. She’s a villain. Not a hero.

    • AJ says:

      In one of the promo posters McPhee is at the top bigger than everyone else and Hilty is off to one side of her. That should tell you right there who the star of the show is and who will get the Marilyn part.

    • Consider This says:

      You sound awfully pressed, honey. Hate to break it to you but Katharine is a star and she fought for this. She earned this role and she carries the show. Having met Katharine on multiple occasion, I will confirm she is an endearing sweetheart.
      But the fact that you despise her so much that you feel the need to comment on it only make you look like a fool. Isn’t life too short for that?

      • Joe says:

        Telling me someone is likable doesn’t make her likable. It’s something unconscious that happens on screen. She can save puppies all day and the fact is when I and a lot of other people see her on screen we don’t root for her. She’s a great villainess. She’s not a hero. It will show in the ratings if we’re supposed to buy into her as the hero.

        • susela says:

          I don’t dislike McPhee, but I think your suggestion that she would make a great villainess is spot on. She would be *great* as a baddie.

          • Dave in Long Beach says:

            Katharine would make a great villain, and if the show runs long enough, maybe that will happen. I think what people react to with Katharine is that she’s just too pretty. We’re suspicious. She doesn’t “need” us the way other less conventionally beautiful people do.
            And Megan Hilty is gorgeous in any real world, but in the Hollywood world, she’s just a bit too short, too buxom, too declasse to be a star. Hence, Megan Hilty for Best Supporting Actress!

    • tarc says:

      And I’d say that’s total hogwash. McPhee is more likable than most of the rest of the cast together. I’m sure tons of fan will tune in just for her. (And I think Hilty is awesome as well, though less likable).

  15. Kevin says:

    I think that Ivy will get the role for Marylin and that Karen will get a smaller role, but that Karen will eventually (season 2?) get the lead in Eileen’s currently on hold production, My Fair Lady. I don’t really like Ellis, he just seems sort of stupid to me. I love everyone else so far though. A+

  16. Just Me says:

    Can’t grade it; didn’t watch it. My heart belongs to Castle.

  17. lisaM says:

    The pilot was amazing! The production and music were top notch. Debera messing and Anjelica Huston were terrific! Katherine Mcphee really impressed my with her acting, and her voice is just amazing. I feel that Karen captures that vulnerability and innocence that made Marilyn such an interesting person. Jack Davenport is a sexy, sexy man! I didn’t really connect with Megan Hilty. She was a little over the top for me and I find her voice not that appealing. They did do a great job of making us feel sorry for her, because I did during certain scenes, but other than that, I was left cold. Anjelica Huston is just fierce. Debra’s assistant needs to go.

  18. K says:

    I absolutely love this show… All of the characters are fantastic and the cast brings them to life brilliantly. Katharine McPhee is such a star! All of her scenes were highlights. Very excited for future episodes!

  19. Carla says:

    Team Ivy all the way! I’m hoping NBC gets this viewer reaction fast and doesn’t make Smash all about Karen. Other than that, love it!

  20. JC says:

    Wow, I really loved it! I was expecting to be a little underwhelmed what with all the NBC promos and hype, but I just really enjoyed it!! The last 20 mins especially were great, and that last song was EPIC! Also surprised at how good Katharine KcPhee was in the acting chops, she seemed really natural, and I swear she never sounded that good on Idol haha! Ivy character is really good also, if a little too Broadway for me, altho I know I know this is a show about Broadway haha! Almost wish there were more songs though. #teamkaren for now. What can I say, I always root for the nice girls!

    • Jess N says:

      She never sounded that good on Idol because they didn’t have the option to add reverb and autotuning on a live show like they do on this one. Her acting was surprisingly good though!

  21. Michael says:

    Really awesome show! Love it! It better have the ratings! I could marathon this like crazy.

  22. Wowzer says:

    Loved it! A few seriously corny moments, mainly involving the assistant who I thought was dreadful, but other than that I loved it!! Kat McPhee can act! Who knew?! I pretty much liked all the characters. Ivy is maybe more suited to the role of Marilyn but I found Karen a much more likeable and relatable character so it’s a tough one to choose! So am going to go #teameileen! lol

  23. Michelle says:

    I loved this pilot when I watched it early!! The character depth that they have already added is superb! I definitely connected with Karen better than Ivy. Yet I see that Ivy has the body and the sexy appeal Marilyn had but Karen has the innocence and in my opinion a better voice. Ivy seems to try to hard when it comes to singing (not saying she cant sing, she definitely can), i just dont believe it.
    By far Eileen will have the best one liners! I died when she made the comment about the blondes!
    Julia is definitely going to be one of my favorite characters, if not favorite period! I LOVE DEBRA MESSING!
    all in all a great start and NBC better not screw it up!

  24. Kay says:

    The pilot was pretty good, but I’m expecting the show to get even better as it goes on. I’m just happy to have the chance to see Megan Hilty on a weekly basis. Girl is amazing!

  25. Ollie says:

    I’m loving this show so far. It’s got a great cast and is a refreshing change. I agree with one of the previous posters who said Ivy leaves her cold. Katharine McPhee will most definitely be the star and get the role of Marilyn. From the promos I’ve seen so far, they make her up to look the part beautifully, and her voice is far more pleasing than Ivy’s. Katharine also has a sweet, seductive charm about her like Marilyn did. Can’t wait to see her in the dance scenes. She moves beautifully. BTW, you American Idol sour grapes fans from Season 5 need to move on and get a life. Katharine is a star for sure! This is long overdue.

  26. Muti says:

    I watched Smash because I was bored with “Lost Girl.” I wasn’t really interested in it at first, figuring it was going to be another Glee type of program, and I don’t watch Glee.
    It caught my attention right quick–dialogue, interesting characters–it has it all.
    I got a bit squicked out when it looked like the Derick/Karen scene was going to the casting couch. I know it happens in reality, but it gets to being kind of a cheap dramatic ploy. I actually turned the channel, disappointed. Turned it back because i wanted to know how it turned out.
    Yes, I’ll be watching this show in future.

  27. Bad Breaker says:

    How refreshing and smart in making both characters, Karen and Ivy, talented, vulnerable and deserving in their own right. It would have been so predictable to make Ivy the royal b*tch a la “Showgirls” or “All About Eve” and Karen the poor little ingenue. I’m glad they didn’t fall into that trite trap.

  28. Winnie says:

    Team Karen…team Katharine McPhee all the way. Megan Hilty does not have the versatility of Katharine McPhee even when it comes to singing pop music like Touch Me. Katharine has it all.

    • dan says:

      With all due respect to Kat McPhee, Megan Hilty doesn’t have the versatility? Are you serious? She got the role of Glinda in “Wicked” fresh out of college; she created the role of Dora Lee (the Dolly Partner character) in “9 to 5: The Musical” and she has done regional theatre and tv playing different roles. I’m a fan of Megan Hilty and even I was surprised at how good she was last night. I’ll give KM credit as well; although I wasn’t a fan when she was on AI, I thought she did a good job in the pilot (she beat my expectations). Too bad I found the last 20 minutes boring (until the finale duet between the two actresses…that will keep me coming back for another episode or two).

  29. Lucy says:

    WOW! Katharine McPhee has quite a beautiful voice, not to mention the fact that she’s drop dead gorgeous. Her acting is very convincing and her character extremely likeable. It’s going to be a real treat to see her every week.

  30. Anne says:

    I loved it!!!!

  31. John says:

    Know what my favorite part of it all is? Everyone’s three-dimensional, no matter who you’re rooting for. Heck, even Karen’s cliched disapproving parents seem like they are genuinely concerned for their daughter!
    The rapport between Messing and Borle, though, is absolutely amazing. Some of the best onscreen chemistry I’ve ever seen. And they’re not even a ‘ship couple!

  32. Leah says:

    Anybody else notice that when Katharine sang her version of ‘Beautiful’ they changed some of the lyrics? It was very noticeable/distracting, and I’m curious as to why they did that…

    • CMG says:

      It was apparently a change that Karen made to make the song more appropriate to the life of Marilyn. (For example, “I get insecure from all the fame” instead of “pain,” a change the captioners missed).
      Unless you know the original lyrics very well, it really wasn’t all that distracting or noticeable.

  33. DB says:

    so i wasn’t really interested in the show, i know basically nothing about Broadway, but after seeing NBC’s pre-superbowl musical promo extraordinaire featuring its entire cast of its lineup that made me so happy, i decided to give their show a chance. well, it was pretty fantastic, a great pilot indeed. i’m on board for the season! Megan Hilty was amazing.

  34. Joseph says:

    I liked aspects of the 1st episode , BUT ,, found that there were some elements that were distracting ,
    1st – No issue with the casting of Raza Jaffrey ,if they had him with a either an American or much lighter English accent , HUGE mistake to have him play that part with such an over the top accent.
    2nd – The Houston Family , an adoption really is the reason she is to give up on her work ? How 1950’s that she has betrayed the family because she wants to work and is not willing to stay home to raise a child. This issue seems to have worked itself out by the end , BUT , a huge waste of time on this story line.
    So not a bad 1st episode but it seems to be a very niche production.

    • Drew says:

      They said that she promised to take a year off to focus on the adoption, since she is never available when she is working (which, in my mind, would suggest that maybe she shouldn’t be looking to adopt at all). It’s not a 1950’s problem. It’s a modern problem.
      He husband took a year off from his work. Why should it be “1950’s” for her to do the same?
      And by the way, how awesome would it be to live in a place like that and to be able to afford the option of taking a year off?

  35. Christina says:

    Absolutely loved the pilot. I’d rate this the best new show of the TV season. I’m not surprised that Katharine McPhee has acting chops afterall she was a theatre actress before she went on idol. I loved that the Karen vs. Ivy battle didn’t come out to be a good vs. evil battle. You definitely sympathized with the Ivy character. I don’t know if they will stick to this but at least for the pilot it was good to see.

  36. Yo says:

    Dev was hot? Oh, Slezak, your taste is in your toenails.

  37. McFudge says:

    Best scene was when Karen went to Derek’s appartment and it took her a few minutes to realize what was really going on. That bit in the bathroom where she didn’t know what to do, then figuring out how to play it out was genius. Kat McPhee was fantastic.
    Funniest line: Karen’s mom mouthing “marry him” after Dev’s mini-speech about how proud he is of Karen.
    It’s been said, but aside from the fact that I’m a sucker for musicals, what’s really wonderful about this show is that nobody is seems to be a one dimensional character. As far as who should play Marilyn, Ivy has the look and Broadway feel to her voice, and she oozes sex. Her vulunerability is kind of desperate, though, so she risks concentrating on the outer Marilyn and not getting into her core. Karen has intrinsic innocence (but not stereotypically so) and may ultimately show a better understanding of Marilyn’s essence, not just her “look”, but so far Karen does not scream “Broadway!”. I’m on #teamKarenandIvy. It’s nice to have the character’s drawn in a way that lets the audience appreciate them both.

  38. Mandy says:

    I can’t wait for the second episode ! SMASH !!!!

  39. Jeff says:

    For those talking about how Ivy should just get the part because she’s put in the work already, that’s not how it works in the business – especially if the director isn’t a fan… I’ll point to how much time Stephanie J. Block spent workshopping and developing Wicked before being kicked to the curb for Idina Menzel. Terrible situation for Block, but what turned out to be the best one possible for the show (and for Block) in the long run…. I can see the same thing happening to Ivy.

    • dan says:

      I may not be as versed in “Wicked” trivia as you are, but I thought Stephanie J. Block was involved in the workshopping for the show and then she took the lead in “Pirate Queen” which was a flop. By the time Stephanie was available Idina was already involved with the show and creating the Elphaba character. Maybe my understanding of the history is off, but SJB eventually did play Elphaba on Broadway for a year or so.

      • Jeff says:

        The stories I’ve always been told is that the director wanted more of a “name” for the role and saught after Idina Menzel; that Block’s departure from the role was not by her own choosing.
        I’m also sure it’s not a situation that anyone is too eager to lay out all the details of on the table

  40. Titina says:

    LOVEd this! Great show.
    Jack Davenport is a hottie sexy man. Great actor too. His chemistry with Kat Mcphee is fantastic! Sparks fly between those two. Can´t wait to see where their story goes.
    Just a hunch: But I don´t think Derek is as mean as it seems. There´s so much more there. That´s just the surface. I would love if Derek in then end properly falls for Karen, but obviously he is gonna sleep with Ivy first.
    This show is addictive!

  41. I liked it for the most part! I agree that you could root for Ivy or Karen. I like Karen better, but I feel like Ivy deserves the role more. She’s already been there for the beginning stages of the creation, she’s spent time as a background singer on another show, sounds good and looks the part. Karen should definitely get some sort of role on the show, but she doesn’t have to be the lead.

  42. meredith says:

    I liked the premiere, didn’t love it. The baseball song & dance number was the best thing about it.
    I’m in the camp that says Megan Hilty >>> Kat McPhee, although Kat was better in the second half of the episode than in the beginning, so there’s promise for her to continue to improve. She sounded great on “Beautiful” and her brush off of the director in his apartment was solid. Although she came across as a little disingenuous — who goes to a famous director’s home in the middle of the night not knowing what to expect?
    Debra Messing is one of my favorite tv actresses and she could end up being the real star of the show.

  43. Paula says:

    I did not expect to like this, but I loved it! I meant to change the channel after The Voice, but I got sucked in from the first moment. This is the first new major network show premiere I’ve watched in three years (because I got tired of shows I like being cancelled after six eps), so I hope this one makes it!

  44. juan says:

    it was definately awesome

  45. Liana in San Diego says:

    Definitely going to continue watching this show, but not because of Ivy and Karen and who is going to be cast as Marilyn. I’m watching because I adore Jack Davenport (Derek) and have followed him through countless shows and movies. He’s a fantastic actor and I hope this show finally makes him well known in America.

  46. Lana says:

    I was lukewarm through most of the pilot but the moment the show won me over ironically came at the end.There was fantastic singing but Let Me Be Your Star was tear inducing great.Hilty and McPhee were flawless. I must’ve listened to it like 50 times now. Amazing.I’m on board.I think we’re supposed to be all in for Karen and while I do like the character I’m equally interested and invested in Ivy.

  47. susela says:

    For a moment, I thought the banished assistant was going to break out in song right there on the sidewalk in front of Tom’s building, as he spoke so affectingly about what “the theater” meant to him. And I was massively grateful that he did not.

  48. baby says:

    I can’t choose yet..All i can say is that i LOVE the pilot and will be fangirling with the rest of the season!
    Long life to Smash!

  49. Tansy says:

    That musical number was embarrassing to watch. How awful.

  50. Molly says:

    Am I really the only one who hated Katherine McPhee? She was just so boring, and the way the other characters acted like she was totally remarkable just seemed ridiculous

    • Danielle H. says:

      I think there are others that aren’t really feeling her. I can tell that people are going to have strong opinions about Ivy and Karen. I went back and forth on liking her myself. I just wish she’d put a bit more into the scenes that don’t involve singing.
      I have to say, this lived up to the hype though. Great hour. Made me want so much more, but I have to throw out there: how are they going to sustain this for seasons, if it goes that far (have a feeling it will though)? This premise is one for a movie.
      I really like most of the characters. Agree with the people who said that Ellis had a couple too sappy moments, but really, overall, I had to give it an A. It was really good.
      NBC may have just premiered it’s meal ticket.