Sunday, April 14, 2013

Smash Episode 211 The Dress Rehearsal

Megan Hilty as Ivy in the "Dig Deep" number
which Tom and Julia staged in like 30  minutes.
This week's episode of Smash was directed by Mimi Leder of ER and Deep Impact fame and I feel like I've got a hangover from all her revolving shots. Leder loves to spin her camera around actors to create a sense of drama and she did it twice here. First with Julia, Tom, Eileen, and Linda frantically conferring over the open dress rehearsal of Bombshell and then at the end of the show where everyone was reading Richard Francis's ridiculous New York Times article unfavorably comparing the show with Hit List. Okay, I know the Smash people are allowed a little dramatic license, but come on. First of all, the Arts Editor of the most important paper in the city would not write anything about theater. He'd assign it to the drama critic or a feature writer. Secondly, he would not write about a show wherein he is dating the producer. Thirdly, he would not write anything in the form of a review about a show which has just started previews and another that is still in rehearsal. After they both open, fine, yes. And another thing, Derek and Scott would definitely NOT let anyone in the press, particularly the Times, into a "stumble-through" of Hit List.

As long as we are listing what would never happen in the real world, let's continue in that vein:

So far, we've got
1. Richard Francis' cockamamie feature comparing the two shows.
2. Julia dramaturging for Hit List. She'd be too busy at the Lily Hayes with Bombshell. And who the hell is Lily Hayes anyway? Up to now they've been using real names of Broadway theaters, why make up a fictional one all of a sudden?
3. Ivy's nudity. She would have to make up her mind before the show starts if she's going to keep the nudity. The stage manager and director wouldn't allow her to improvise onstage during a performance.
4. Derek changing the beginning of Hit List just before the "stumble-through." You don't reconceive the entire show just before a run-through for a major arts editor. Derek would have to block it and run through it. That takes more than a couple of seconds as depicted. (I wonder if anyone in the TV audience knew what he was talking about when he referenced All About Eve and Sunset Boulevard?)
5. Sam quitting Bombshell just before opening. "I'd rather be unemployed than work for you," he told Tom, his former lover. People in this show don't seem to have rent or food expenses.
6. That whole thing in the audience with "Dig Deep" to cut short the intermission. What was that? The actors took up too many seats, plus you'd never want to crawl all over audience members. Plus if the idea is to speed up the transition into "Public Relations" in order to get the airplane on stage, I don't see how that works. Ivy and the whole chorus now has to frantically race backstage and change costumes. And is it a reprise of "Dig Deep" as opposed to the whole number? If so, it doesn't make dramatic sense. If not, the number is thrown away. At least Henry Stram who plays Lee Strasberg will get some money out of it.

But there were things I really liked about this episode
1. Karen and Jimmy getting told off to fuck off by Ana and Kyle respectively. I absolutely love that these two are getting their come-uppance. It was great when Dead-Eyed Karen whined about losing yet another song to Acrobatic Ana and Ana told her shut her piehole about it.
2. Ellis appearing in Tom's nightmare.

I guess that's about it. NBC is clearly reducing care for this patient. Just like last week, they refused to spend money on making a promo for the next episode. This week we got a sneak peak of that sci-fi show about a future with no electricity which is where Smash is headed.


  1. I missed the first 1/3 of the show. Suddenly it was on at 8pm instead of 9pm -- so they switched schedules again. First, they bumped it from Tuesdays at 10 to Saturdays at 9, then last night it was on at 8pm. So what's it to be from now on?

  2. My DVR caught the time change and still recorded the two-hour Voice which followed. Smash is definitely on the way out.