Clearly, all these issues will come to a head at Bombshell’s big opening, a glitzy event that attracts everyone from Rosie O’Donnell to the cast and crew of Hit List to real-life Broadway vets Marc Shaima and Scott Wittman, a.k.a. the dynamic duo actually responsible for Bombshell’s songs. Guess they’ve been pleased with the way nobody ever critiques the show-within-a-show’s music (despite the enduring presence of “Dig Deep”). Before the show can begin, we’re treated to some offstage drama: Jimmy finally comes clean to Karen about his sordid past in
Mr. Bumble’s orphanage Brother Adam’s Den of Iniquity, where he took shelter after he and his bro escaped their abusive dad. If you remember Jimmy and Kyle’s initial explanation of Hit List’s plot, none of this should be particularly surprising… though it apparently is news to Karen.
Meanwhile, Tom has kinda-sorta-not-really made up with Julia, by which I mean he’s no longer openly antagonizing her (progress!). She melts his heart by presenting her partner with a first edition of The Great Gatsby, then telling him that the rights to the story will soon be theirs. A nation of 9th graders who yearn to have someone else illuminate the book’s symbols can’t wait to see what Houston and Levitt do with it.
Tom, though, responds carefully to Julia’s news, saying that while they’ve long wanted to get their hands on Gatsby, he doesn’t want to rush into a new show just yet. There’s just one thing he’s not telling her: Another producer has told Tom that he’s a shoo-in to direct an upcoming revival of City of Angels, provided his Bombshell work gets a love letter from the Times. Glad to see that there’s exactly one context in which newspapers can still make or break somebody’s future.
We’ll have to wait and see what Richard Francis’s rag has to say about Tom’s direction, though -- because it’s finally, finally showtime! The bad news: After the curtain rises, we don’t get to see another montage of Bombshell’s greatest moments (give the people “The National Pastime,” Safran! It’s all we want!). The good news: We do, however, see Ivy perform “Don’t Forget Me” in its entirety, leaving the audience enraptured and Karen looking like she ate one too many corn dogs at the state fair. Derek’s enthusiastic hoots and shouts of “Bravo!” certainly aren’t helping matters. Better go find a bar with a stage where you can nurse those wounds, Iowa.
Karen’s jealousy is appropriate: the show, it seems, has “hit” written all over it, especially considering early reviews from Variety, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal. Even Derek goes as far as to tell Scott that he thinks Tom’s Bombshell is “pretty good,” which is the equivalent of a normal, kind person likening it to a transcendent, life-changing experience.
NEXT: The sky is blue, water is wet, and Jimmy ruins everything