Smash Recap: Bad Medicine

Much like Ivy Lynn halucinating in her bedroom on this week’s episode of Smash, I’m wondering if some of this week’s storylines might’ve been figments of my imagination. Mind you, I’m not “hypersensitive to drugs” — how Christian Borle delivered that groaner with a straight face is beyond comprehension — but I need confirmation that the following plot developments didn’t just materialize out of the ether, like Katharine McPhee in wonky Marilyn Monroe drag:

* Julia and Michael consummating their rekindled affair | So dude threatens to blow up at Julia during rehearsals and expose their kiss, calls her and courts her while his wife is putting their wee one to bed, and generally refuses to abide by the “no means no” moral code. And what does Julia do? She responds by eventually taking a late-night walk to the studio (in her pajama top!) and doing the nasty (and I do mean nasty) with Michael on the rehearsal-room couch! I don’t buy it, and I’m glad Tom reminded his BFF she needs to think about her husband and her son (even if her son speaks every line in the same blank monotone).

* Eileen fraternizing with…Ellis? | Wait, my favorite character on the show is suddenly hitting dive bars with the sniveling, stalker-ish assistant in the bright orange pants and perpetual sycophant smile? I find this story as hard to swallow as a glass of curdled milk!

* Karen acting like she came from the back of a turnip truck rather than the state of Iowa | Come on. The chick has been in NY long enough to have moved in with her hunky boyfriend. And we’re supposed to believe she’s still such a rube that she wouldn’t recognize the name of a major record producer or know how to put her script pages in order or be shocked-to-the-point-of-gasping over a credit card bill that’s less than $500? Um, unless she has a trust fund we don’t now about, that is.

* Also, it’s time for the chorus guy/friend of Ivy who’s got his eye on Tom to have a personality trait other than “watches sports” | I feel like the show’s writers think that they’re somehow being revolutionary by introducing us to a hockey-watching homosexual, but they need to realize it’s 2012, not 1992. That said, I did like Tom and Ivy’s conspiratorial horror over the fact that his current beau fancies an “upscale minimalist” look for his apartment.

Oh, and in case you missed this week’s show, the crux of the action was that Ivy Lynn’s voice began to give out — a week before a workshop for investors — and she wound up taking prednisone to sooth her vocal cords, but suffered paranoia and mood swings as side effects. When she blew up at Derek over his critique of her lovely performance of “History Is Made at Night” — that one’s got quite  hook, no? — it may have put the idea in the director’s brain to use his Plan B (aka “the Cartwright girl”) for Marilyn. Time will tell. You know the dude is going to retaliate for being called a “narcissistic prick” in front of the entire cast. Also, Ivy sang Jessie J’s “Who You Are” (gawwwwgeous), Karen performed Florence + the Machine’s “Shake It Out” at a Bar Mitzvah (kind of a loosey goosey voice for a more technical singer), and Eileen caught the eye of a hunky bartender.

What did you think of this week’s Smash? Sound off in the comments!

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!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Zach says:

    Loved this episode, but can’t wait for Episode 8 The Coup!

  2. Mal says:

    Not one of the stronger eps, IMO, but I was glad we finally got to hear the full version of “History is Made At Night” b/c I loved it when we heard the chorus the other week. And I dug “Shake It Up,” but it could be because I dig “Shake It Up,” original flavor.

  3. dan says:

    The hunky bartender at the dive was played by Thorsten Kaye, who is well known to daytime audiences (Emmy nominated for playing Zach on “All My Children” and he was a popular character on “One Life to Live” many years ago). His name was in the opening credits but he didn’t have much screen time so apparently he’ll be back (I’ve seen his picture in promotional shots of next week’s episode) and I assume he’ll be hanging with Eileen. Maybe he can put us out of our misery and take care of Ellis once and for all (Zach was soft spoken but he always knew how to take care of his enemies in Pine Valley). Don’t get me started on the Bar Mitzvah scenes…just all kinds of wrong (and I’ve been to plenty…even hosted a few). I want to like McPhee’s character, but the writers keep giving her dumb crap to do (ie: what was the point of making her late to the party? it had no relevance to the very thin plot…they just want us to continually think that Karen fell off the Idaho trailer truck yesterday). And Julia walking (or cabbing) thru Manhattan in her PJ top? Just bizarre.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Matt here. Thorsten Kaye has a bigger role in next week’s (much better) episode.

    • Cathy says:

      So glad to hear that they’re expanding Thorsten Kaye’s role — I though he was wasted in his bartender role this week, and this guy is a TREASURE! I’m hoping that the show lets him keep his slight brogue!

  4. Jodi says:

    I am starting to hate Julia and Michael. They are really gross. I see no reason why Julia would do this to her family.

    • Jessica says:

      Ugh I agree, It felt awkward to me! & Michael kind of gives me the creeps. I wish Julia would not have done that, I really thought they were going to make her a tad stronger than that!

    • Alienate says:

      But, overall, I am still enjoying the show.

    • jenna says:

      AGREED! Especially with Frank now back from his conference/training thing. I’m just waiting until the son reveals that he knows about the affair

  5. nyguy says:

    This show gets cheezier by the week. Won’t be hanging on much longer by the look of that awful coming attraction at the end of the show.

  6. George says:

    Did I miss something w/this Eillen & Ellis stuff? Wasn’t it last week he simply dropped a few things off at her office and gave her computer a quickly looksy? Nothing more? Where did this full blown friendship come from?

    As a soap fan I was glad to see Thorsten Kaye (the bartender) pop up though? Hopefully there’s more in store for him…

  7. Denise says:

    i had such high hopes for this show :( so far it’s been really underwhelming. The original songs are amazing and Megan Hilty is outstanding, even though i am really starting to get annoyed by Ivy.
    Tom and Eileen are the best characters by far!
    I really do like Karen (i am biased because i’m a mcphee fan from waaaay back though), but i wish she’d get to sing more originals, every time they do a cover it feels weird and oddly placed. Shake it Out was an excellent cover though.
    The whole Julia/Michael thing makes me feel so incredibly uncomfortable. I feel so bad for their families :/
    The only consistent thing i feel with this show is the burning hatred i have for Ellis, that little weasel!
    And something else that i really love is how they develop the friendships. Ivy/Tom, Julia/Tom and Karen/all the chorus kids.
    I will continue watching because I still hold out hope that it’ll get better in time.

  8. Amy says:

    I disagree. I think it’s perhaps a case of right person, wrong time. While I certainly don’t like the cheating, I can’t help feeling that they have a genuine connection- not just physical attraction. Their shared passion for music and theater is a bond that isn’t exactly practical but isn’t going away, even if they are with others. It’s a weak comparison but I kind of compare them to the Phantom and Christine in Phantom of the Opera: a writer and performer, who shouldn’t be together but nonetheless are drawn together by their shared music.

    • Jess says:

      no offense, but that’s just an excuse. if they were truly in love 5 years ago, then they should’ve had the balls to be together so at least jules wouldn’t be contemplating adopting another child and michael wouldn’t be cheating on his own family now 5 years later.

  9. sarah says:

    I like this show and I liked this episode. However there are a few things that bug me but it is all part of the storyline!
    Ellis acting like a child running to Eileen and telling her everything.
    Ivy still being a royal beyotch to Karen. Then in rehearsal Ivy was super unprofessional blowing up at Derek and whining that he treats her like Crap, it was laughable as SHE is treating Karen like crap. I really hope Ivy gets fired.
    Derek calling Karen the Cartwright girl, Um Derek she almost had the role of Marilyn and you have had 1 on 1 time with her she deserves to be called by her first name. He dose not call Ivy that Lynn girl
    For some reason I find Will Chase hot. I do not like that they are cheating on their spouses though

  10. Jess says:

    All i can say is, Michael is gross! He is surpassing Derek and Ellis to become my LEAST favorite character, and that’s saying a lot given how much I hated Ellis. But Jules, seriously, WTF?!? Last night’s viewing was pretty much just me saying “gross” to my TV. Especailly when they focused on that sex-couch for like 10 minutes during the dance scene the next day *shudders*

    next week’s preview looks interesting, esp. if Tom goes banshee on michael. but Smash previews so far have always looked awesome but then fall short of delivering so we’ll see…

  11. Caro says:

    Julia cheating – NOT GOOD, I HATE IT!

    I hate Ellis as much and I was surprised Eileen didn’t boot him for trying to suck up to her! I imagined her to be more clever and didn’t expect her to get along with a ‘cheating’ assistent. If he acts on his boss Tom then he will on her, eventually, and nobody wants that.

    TEAM KAREN! I was waiting for her to take over the lead, but unfortunately she didn’t – yet? I really hope mean girl Ivy will get booted and Karen will get a chance. Great that she got this hot shot’s number! I hope this will turn into an advantage for her when they find out at Marilyn’s… and she will get the part!

  12. Josh says:

    I heard next week’s episode is much better…so I’ll stick with but the show needs to dial down on the soap opera crap.

  13. Adriane says:

    Completely agree. Love the show, but definitely not really anything about this episode. None of it really worked for me. And for as much as I really do like Michael…no bueno.

    And the proof reading nazi in me would like to point out that there should be an “a” inserted into “that one’s got quite _ hook” under the “crux of the episode” paragraph :)

  14. Liz says:

    This is a silly question–I suppose I shouldn’t be looking for logic in Smash–but wouldn’t any normal show, even one in workshop form, have an official understudy for its lead role? The characters act as though naming Karen as a possible replacement in case of illness is the wildest idea they’ve ever heard.

    • CMG says:

      Not a silly question at all. It’s something I’ve been wondering about all along. The race for the role of Marilyn was always between Ivy and Karen. Once Ivy was cast, nary a word was said about making Karen u/s, which seemed like it’d be an obvious and natural plot development. It wouldn’t even conflict with the Ivy/Karen rivalry they have setup, as I’d imagine there are probably plenty of places where the star clashes with the understudy, or is paranoid about being replaced permanently by the understudy.

      Maybe you and I are wrong… maybe there’s something weird about the way understudies are cast on Broadway… anyone with inside info that can explain how it works “in the real world?”

  15. Tania says:

    My spidey sense tells me that Julia’s hubby is having an affair.

    • Linderella says:

      I hope you’re right. I would still hate Michael, but I’d feel better about Julia messing around. Maybe that’s the reason Frank told her he wasn’t still interested in the adoption thing – even though he later showed up at the parents’ adoption support group. Either way, I’m loving Smash mostly because it is a soap opera! What’s not love about about a soap opera with great music? And yes, Ivy is a be-yotch with a capital B for bonafide!

  16. cmtuck53 says:

    I keep hoping it will get better – but thus far it isn’t appointment tv for me.

  17. Lisa says:

    Last night’s ep was okay. I love Smash and want to see it picked up for another season but they need to correct some mistakes.

    Change the timeslot – should be earlier.
    Ellis and Eileen – not realistic
    Julia and Michael – not enough of a backstory for us to root for them, especially against her sweet hubby and son. Triangles are three sided for a reason so flush this one out.
    Ivy – still annoying and not likeable
    Karen – we need to see more of her and see her as more viable contender for Marilyn. Or a record deal. Let her have more to bring to the party!

    • Maureen says:

      I think I don’t find Ivy annoying because of her friendship with Tom. Tom is my favorite character and if he likes her so much, then the way she acts must be from insecurity and not from being a horrible person. Insecurity is something I can completely identify with.

  18. Maureen says:

    I don’t get people’s love for Karen. She is so blah. And she’s just waiting around for something bad to happen to Ivy so she can steal her job. Wouldn’t a geniunely nice person root for someone who’s paid her dues on Broadway get her big chance? Ivy is such a better choice for Marilyn. Katharine McPhee is too tall and lanky to play her. Especially since the guy playing DiMaggio doesn’t seem that tall. And I hate the affair between Michael and Julia. Michael seems to show absolutely no conflict about what it would do to his family. How is that an attractive quality?

    • DB says:

      perhaps because everyone else is so goddamn unlikable? Julia and Michael, gross. Derek, a sociopath. Ivy, drama queen. Ellis, creepy. so…I guess I’ll settle on rooting for Karen, but her lack of personality is making it pretty hard.

  19. Km says:

    When I hear this show do covers, it makes me realize, I may be too hard on Glee. Its just cheesy, in not the over the top way that Glee is. Its just not hooking me in.

    • dan says:

      The covers in Smash do nothing to forward the plot. Although Glee is heavy handed, they somehow work the music into the story better, which is something I never thought I would say.

  20. dan says:

    Somehow, the relationship with Eileen is the only thing making me like Ellis, even if he will probably end up being a big user trying to manipulate her. I like that she enjoyed the dive bar and playing video games, it makes her seem plucky, at least to me. And I loved how it ended on her taking a shot.

    Rest of the episode, meh.

    I’m thinking Ivy will screw up at the workshop, and Karen will miraculously have to take over.

  21. Jen says:

    The relationship between Michael and Julia doesn’t bother me, I really don’t know why everyone is getting so up in arms about it. Her husband is sweet? We hardly know him. Maybe he is, maybe he isn’t.

    I find Ivy to be really, really annoying and thus not caring that whathisface is a complete DB to her.

    I think Tom is my favorite character, and Ellis my least favorite.

  22. Alex says:

    Really enjoyed this episode, especially Ivy’s rendition of the Jesse J song, Karen who’s performances I normally enjoy does not have a strong enough voice to sing a Florence and the Machines song, Weak!

  23. Mike says:

    Wait. Julia takes a late night stroll to clear her head from Brooklyn to what appear to be the Ailey studios at 55 and 9th Ave? I can see where the show is headed, so I still hold out hope, but the writing is awful which is surprising for the woman who has a successful play(Seminar) on Bway

  24. Lyria says:

    I’m sorry but Ivy’s reaction to one dose of prednisone (and 6 pills can be one dose depending on your prescription) was beyond insane and annoying, no matter how supposedly “hypersensitive” she is. I normally like her, but she was so ridiculous and grating. I didn’t enjoy her song either and I LOVE her voice.

    • Michelle says:

      I didn’t enjoy the song because it was disturbing the way she performed it and the way it kept cutting and jumping around. The whole thing bothered me

    • susela says:

      By the time she went all road rage at Derek, she’s been on Prednisone for three days and yes, it can do that to you. It’s a powerful steroid, and it’s prescribed for short-term use (in a tapering dose) for a reason. Made me completely nuts the few times I’ve been on it.

  25. John says:

    The Julia & Michael affair is so creepy! How many times does she need to say no. The whole concept it terribly written. She clearly doesn’t want to be there, but they force the character to stay. There is no written in horny little devil in her personality. There is nothing particularly redeeming about him. Its really awkward to watch a woman asserting herself by saying no, and the guy just ignoring her… and then she magically does exactly what he wants her to do. Thats not real, its not sexy, and certainly not romantic.

    • Liana in San Diego says:

      Totally agree! Since when did “no” mean yes? Oh, that’s right, when men never learned to admire, empower, support and listen to women. Nothing new there. But Julia’s no is so weak and wimpish… she’s an idiot, we already know Michael’s an idiot for pursuing this and I’m annoyed at the writers for going this route.

      This is probably one of the most contrived, trite shows that is currently on tv… predictable beyond belief. Even without watching the promos for the following week, you can pretty much write out the script as to what will happen. This show is losing me fast, not that I was ever completely hooked to begin with.

  26. Noelle says:

    If I had been playing a drinking game during last night’s show where I took a shot every time Ivy looked with trepidation at the Prednisone bottle, I would have been smashed. There is little subtlety in this show.

  27. Yolanda says:

    Every episode preview makes it look like Karen has a chance at performing in the lead role at some point, and then every episode she gets some stupid subplot unrelated to the musical. Baby showers, bar mitzvahs, dance lessons, . . . Maybe they’re building to something, but I wouldn’t believe it if she was pushed into the role too late into the season. Plus, Ivy is becoming so unlikeable that it is hard to root for her as the lead.

  28. WOW says:

    “Also, Ivy sang Jessie J’s “Who You Are” (gawwwwgeous), Karen performed Florence + the Machine’s ”Shake It Out” at a Bar Mitzvah (kind of a loosey goosey voice for a more technical singer)”

    LMAO, are you kidding me Slezak? “Who You Are” was ATROCIOUS. And I like Hilty, but everything about that scene was very cheap and wtf, including the clunky vocals. It was easily the WORST musical number we have seen from the whole series, including that Horrible, Horrible, Horrible performance of Grenade from episode 3. Everyone on twitter with eyes and ears said the same thing.

    On the other hand, Karen’s “Shake It Out” was absolutely beautiful. Her voice wrapped the song like a cloud and took it to a whole other, ethereal level. It was angelic and heavenly, a quality which fit the song lyrics perfectly. And she DIDN’T try to imitate the original singer’s vocal intonations and tic, which Hilty clunkily did. This performance has gotten universal praise.

    Keep it classy and unbiased Slezak.

    • Carla says:

      Yes, Shake it Up was pretty cool, but I disagree about Who You Are. I think it was amazing. The weird cuts definitely took away from it, but other than that, I loved it! Megan Hilty did an amazing job in my opinion.

    • Kip says:

      Actually, I agreed with Slezak that vocally Hilty did a fine job. I thought the direction of that scene was TERRIBLE though. I also thought, and others have expressed, that McPhee wasn’t a great fit for that song.

    • Jas says:

      Oh come on, the only reason you are critisizing Ivy’s song and gushing all over Mcphees is because you are one of Mcphees lead stans. Give me a freakin break, “etheral” really? God you guys make normal ppl want to puke! Go back to your site and bitch and moan some more. ‘Who are you’ was gorgeous, the whole bar mitzah scene and song was so corny. Love how you want Slezak to stay classy and “unbiased” “do as I say not as I do”? it seems.

      • lol says:

        lmao, what were you doing creeping on a McPhee fansite? Pathetic. Do something constructive with your life! So what if someone is a crazed stan about a celebrity? At least they are following someone they are passionate about and whom they like, not someone they hate. That’s just unhealthy!

  29. Emily M says:

    Julia and Michael together? Will it last long…hopefully, but its just wishful thinking. It seems their relationship is destine for failure, too many complications with her family and his as well. Tom seems to influence Julia, and he has already warned her of playing with fire, he could be the end of this “fling” just by telling her “its not worth it”, or maybe Julia’s morals will come back from there hiatus and she’ll decide to break it off. Regardless, it won’t last long….similar to Will and Alicia from the Good Wife – “Bad Timing”.

  30. Tristen says:

    I am so glad to find out I was not the only one disgusted by the Julia/Michael scene from last night. I kept looking away from the screen because I just could not stand it. I hope it ends and ends quickly. Both of their families deserve better.

    • Emily M says:

      I’m not necessarily disgusted…yet, I’m just upset that its predictable. In a few episodes their fling will be over and done with and then it will be nothing more than tension and awkwardness between the two. However, if they change plot a little and make their relationship less predictable then maybe more people will enjoy watching it. I guess we have to just stay tuned until next time.

  31. susela says:

    I would gladly settle for a lot less music in each episode if they would stick solely to “Marilyn”-based numbers. I love the music that arises organically from the work of staging a Broadway play, but having characters break out into song on the sidewalk or in their bedrooms is just boring and predictable—and does nothing to advance the plot. Please just give us the story of “Marilyn: The Musical” and drop the creepy love affair between the lyricist and her stalker. Oh, and kill off Ellis. Thank you.

  32. Eveateden says:

    Ellis needs to go and this affair between Julia and Michael needs to end! Dude drives me nuts. She didn’t want to cast him but when she did she tried to stay away from him. He wouldn’t leave her alone! Still mad she gave in but i’m madder at HIM for being such an ass to not take no the first time!

  33. Danielle H says:

    Definitely the weakest and my least favorite episode yet. The cheating situation is just sad/sickening to me.. I don’t like it at all.
    I’m getting sick of hearing Ivy complain about sleeping with Derek to him and others.. it’s very one note and happens 5 times an episode.
    But Michael, being hypersensitive to drugs is a real, absolutely sucky thing. I can’t even take a Motrin without getting super sick sometimes. So no, it wasn’t an unrealistic line.

  34. Mariana says:

    I’m sorry but this episode was just cheap lazy writing (not the songs, those are great!).
    Julia could have been such a good strong well written character. Hooking her up with Michael was such a cheap and lazy choice and not at all consistent with who they introduced in the beginning! Why not take the challenge and actually write real plot lines that aren’t done by every other tv show out there? A woman being strong, smart, and not controlled by her emotions… A marriage actually needing work and then doing that work? Characters that are actually adults and not hormonal teenagers? Now THAT would be good writing, different, and worth watching!