“Smash” – Opening Night Jitters

Will a last-minute attack of nerves derail Ivy and sink Bombshell? No. No, it will not.

Previously, on Smash

Also Derek was accused of sexual harassment and everyone promptly forgot about it.

The curtain falls on the last preview performance of Bombshell. Amidst general congratulations Leigh Conroy hopes Ivy saved a little something for tomorrow night. Ivy taunts the Gods of Theatre by saying for the first time she feels confident. The Gods of Theatre’s opening salvo is in the form of Bobby, who is wearing a brown turtleneck that is an exact match to my dad’s go-to night out outfit in the 1980s so I do not approve.


He starts in on something he read online but Ivy shushes him. Jessica bounds into frame to exposit that Ivy is in a self-imposed media blackout until after the opening. Bobby can’t fathom someone not wanting to obsessively Google-stalk themselves but Ivy wants to focus on her performance. Leigh further irks the Gods of Theatre by saying Ivy only has one more night to go. That’s about one step above “what’s the worst that could happen?”

Out in the house Tom and Julia are spitballing ideas for their next project. Gulliver’s Travels? Too big. Lord of the Flies? Too bleak. Julia thinks Tom is still mad about the NYT article but doesn’t think she can apologize any more than she already has. Tom disagrees. Julia suggests building a musical around the works of poet Ezra Pound and is not only in dead earnest but this is apparently a dream project for her. Tom rolls his eyes so hard I fear for his peripheral vision. Julia’s all, fine, you hate all of my ideas so let’s hear some of yours when we get home. Tom’s not going home; he’s having drinks with producer Chet Preston. He invites Julia to come with but she declines. She tosses a last-second pitch: The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I will hurt you, Julia.

Santana Lopez From Fifteen Years In The Future (played by, I don’t think I’ve mentioned, Daphne Rubin-Vega) tells Eileen backstage that she hasn’t been able to suss out anything from the Times about its review. Has she heard anything from Richard Francis? Eileen isn’t speaking to Richard because of the article. Santana Lopez From Fifteen Years In The Future tells her to suck it up, buttercup, because while the review may already be written it has not been published and they do not need a pissed-off arts editor on them. The last person Eileen wants to invite to the opening is Richard but Santana Lopez From Fifteen Years In The Future orders her to text him immediately to invite him and to tell him she is not wearing underpants.


Santana Lopez From Fifteen Years In The Future just officially edged out Stage Manager Linda as my favorite side character, and I still want the two of them to get gay married and travel the country rescuing regional theater productions.

Downtown at Hit List Scott and Kyle join the cast backstage to announce that the show is officially sold out. He also reports that Eileen has invited them to the opening of Bombshell. The idea of going upsets Karen so badly that she almost makes a facial expression.

She leaves the theater and Jimmy Charming chases after her, asking her to go to the show with him. She isn’t going. Jimmy protests that Scott made it mandatory (he didn’t) but Karen has the best Get Out of Theater Free card, her status as the former lead. Jimmy asks if she thinks she made a mistake leaving the show. She doesn’t but it would just be too difficult to attend. She compares it to attending your ex’s wedding. You don’t want him back but you don’t want to see him marry someone else either. Jimmy extends the metaphor, saying the best way to attend an ex’s wedding is with a date. If she changes her mind, he’s there for her. Who is this person and what has he done with Jimmy?

As Ivy gazes at the Bombshell marquee the Gods of Theatre finally land their shot in the form of a couple emerging from the restaurant behind her. The husband liked it but he didn’t love it. The wife chides that he never loves anything and the music was beautiful. The husband says it isn’t the music, it’s “her”, what with her knocking around the chorus for years and generally following a fairly standard career trajectory for Broadway leading ladies, the very idea! Ivy takes this profoundly stupid criticism directly to heart and her face crumbles.

Outside Hit List Ana encounters the loitering Adam (David Call); he compliments her on her performance. She invites him to join the company for drinks but he declines, thinking Jimmy wouldn’t like it. Jimmy’s not going, but he still demurs. Ana asks what’s up and Adam spills that he’s Jimmy’s brother. Ana is intrigued and must know more immediately.

Over drinks with Chet, Tom learns that Chet’s planned revival of City of Angels is in trouble since its director dropped out to direct the next Bond movie. Tom cavalierly tells him to find someone else, but to be sure that person plays up the noir and tragic elements of the show. Chet is impressed by this take and suggests Tom might be right for it, if he and Julia don’t have another project lined up. Tom says they don’t, which is not a lie, so Chet says he’ll talk to his partners.If the Bombshell reviews are as good as he expects they will be the show will most likely be Tom’s. Credits!

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