Smash season premiere recap: Another Op'nin', Another Show

With Karen and Ivy Lynn, her foe / Can Safran save it, or will it blow? / It's season 2 now so come on, let's go!
Ep. 01 | Aired Feb 5, 2013

YOUR MOMENT OF JEN A revamped season 2? Who cares -- all we really need is more J. Hud retro pastiche numbers.

Will Hart/NBC

In non-Ivy/Karen dramz land: Frank is less than convincing when he tells Julia that the woman Tom saw him with is just "someone from school." When pressed, he explodes at his unfaithful wife in front of all of her colleagues -- and the ubiquitous Michael Riedel, who's weaseled his way in despite Derek's orders.

As Julia cries to Tom about her broken marriage, she makes one more confession: She did, in fact, read the reviews that praised Bombshell's music but savaged its book. (Iiiinterestng.) "Everything I've done has turned out so wrong!" she sobs. "What if I can't fix it?" If -- as this juicy Buzzfeed exposé claims -- Julia is meant to be ex-showrunner Theresa Rebeck's stand-in, this scene is a loaded one indeed.

Marilyn 1.0's prostration has thawed the ice around Marilyn 2.0's Midwestern heart. But just as Karen is about to ask Derek not to kick Ivy out of the show, everybody learns that there's no longer a show to get kicked out of. Someone (Ellliiiiisssssss) has tipped the government off about the money Eileen's been using to finance Bombshell. That puts the musical in legal limbo... meaning that the ultimate answer to "who will play Marilyn?!" is "nobody!" Well, that's one way to get a clean slate.

Cut, print... moving on. As Ivy gently sings "Don't Dream It's Over" at yet another audition, Tom examines a bouquet he's just received that came with this card: "Great job on the score. We should talk... S." The stationary reveals that S to be none other than Wicked composer Stephen Schwartz. Nice! Julia, meanwhile, takes a deep breath and reads Riedel's latest anti-Bombshell screed, which calls her "unfocused" script "an inch-thin picture show." (He's not just talking about the show-within-a-show, either.) And Eileen, still defiant, hangs a Bombshell poster in her office as Jerry watches, because he's certainly planted a homing device on her. Don't ever let them win, Anjelica!

Karen, meanwhile, heads back to Table 46, where she mournfully nurses a drink until the wee hours. After some more prickly banter with Jimmy, she asks the other bartender, a kind-eyed guy named Kyle, if his coworker is always such a d-bag. The answer is "yes" -- but only because Jimmy is fierce and uncompromising and misunderstood, with a jumbo-sized chip on his shoulder and a voice that makes Will Chase sound like Gilbert Gottfried.

And then Jeremy Jordan opens his beautiful face and absolutely destroys a sappy little tune called "Broadway, Here I Come" -- as Iowa, like Terrible Ellis before her, holds out her phone to capture his marvelous sound. Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to our new leading dude.

NEXT: For a good time, call 917-555-0144

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