Monday, April 2, 2012

Smash Report: The World According to Ivy

We begin at Karen’s apartment. She’s trying on sunglasses to see which one works with her outfit. Call me stupid, but do people really have multiple sunglasses to match different outfits? Anyway, in a montage of morning routines, we see McSleazy and Ivy in bed, Julia being a mom, and Tom and John trying to figure out when they’ll see each other next. Tom wants to go to John’s event, which turns out to be a Republican event, thus revealing John is a gay Republican. I smell trouble! Back at the Houston’s, Frank discovers some papers. With the use of eyes, we know that’s trouble too! At the diner, Sam and Ivy have breakfast where Ivy reveals her laundry list of pills she’s taking. Sam tells her be careful, which is probably some foreshadowing. Meanwhile at Headquarters, Ellis lists off an interesting list of names for Marilyn, including Anna Paquin and Anna Farris. As if! Eilen and McSleazy have a discussion about the progress of the script. Eileen is ready to star chase while McSleazy wants a revised script and a timeline of a year before he starts the new production. Back to reality, we are! Eileen is a tad mad so she has Ellis call Doug Hughes. Replacement director already? At an audition, Ivy bumps into Karen walking out of the room where the casting people say, “she was perfect.” Ivy looks sad. The rivalry is heating up again! What are you going to do Ivy? All I can say is: keep away from those pills, girl!
Karen gets a phone call, saying she got the part for an orange juice commercial. Yippie! Tom and Julia discuss a new title while Tom freaks out about John and the Republican card. Tom says it’s a deal breaker, but Julia says he should give him a chance. And I agree! Keep him around! At Heaven on Earth, we see a number from the show featuring Ivy. It’s a pretty atrocious song, yet so classic Broadway. And then Norbert Leo Butz waltzes down the stairs. No doubt he’s an entertainer (despite stealing a Tony last year, but I digress.) We don’t get to see anymore, but let’s hope we do! Snoopy and his friend snoop on Eileen’s computer to see who they’re scouting for Marilyn. They start listing names that mean nothing to the average person. Yet another throwaway Snoopy scene? At the Houstons (the title of a possible spinoff???), Frank is singing a song written by Julia about Michael. Rut ro. Frank accuses Julia of something, but Julia assures him that it’s over. Denial City, USA. Frank puts the pieces together that Julia and Michael had a fling, which is a betrayal of nearly everything. The dramatic scene looks more like something from “Parenthood” than “Smash.” Some nice acting, yet misplaced. Did we want Frank to find out and threaten their marriage or did we want to continue to live in wedded bliss? Well either way, Julia has some bigger issues than finding a new title for Marilyn.
At the commercial shoot, Karen is wearing a green screen (Yes, you read that right). She’s on a set of green screen. Not gonna lie, it’s quite hilarious. But everything nowadways is cgi. Long live live theater! Outside of New York Theater Workshop, Frank approaches Michael. Throw down! From the get go, Michael knew a confrontation was imminent. Frank has a meltdown like something out of the Charlie Sheen playbook. He winds up and punches Michael. Frank has some muscle a la Shrek. Fiction meets reality! Ellis has a private meeting with an agent, played by Sean Dugan, to get his client into the musical. Snoopy! Stop! Eileen has a private meeting with a potential new director (aka Doug Hughes) only to be overshadowed by the appearance of Michael Riedel. Really? Really? Well, at least he’s a good sport. At a post performance dinner for Ivy’s return, Tom is grabbed by Sam, warning him of Ivy’s potential wrath. When Tom doesn’t come over to say hi, she has a meltdown due to Tom’s ignoring and Karen’s successing. Jealousy to the max! Ivy returns home with McSleazy waiting for her. But what is she whining about? Karen! I think someone has an obsession! McSleazy reads a TV pilot that leads to Ivy’s, “is there a part for me.” The world according to Ivy! At Ivy’s, McSleazy gets wind of Michael Reidel’s post about Eileen’s meeting. You bad boy Michael Riedel! Meanwhile, Ivy takes some pills with “Let Me Be Your Star” underscoring. The foreshadowing came into fruition!
The next morning, McSleazy bursts past Snoopy, who he calls a Chihuahua, to see Eileen. He’s furious about the prospect of being replaced. Perhaps he now feels how Ivy feels! In the dressing room of Heaven on Earth, Ivy is so sad she looks in the mirror holding a pill bottle. Snoopy goes to the agent’s sweet digs to drop off the demo for his client, and then offers his services for some potential hanky panky. Snoopy! You hound! We go from Snoopy to loopy as Ivy is drugged up before her next entrance on stage. I smell disaster! Tom, looking all swanky, goes to John’s Republic event to be a supportive lover (are they bfs yet?) Loopy Ivy tries to perform that weird song from before. She is cracked out of her mind. And her stage managers are not pleased to watch the scene. I think I would be having a freak out if it were me! While on stage, Karen drops off Ivy’s sunglasses and watches Ivy’s hilarious performance. Talk about stealing the scene! Norby who? Ivy takes a tumble (new viral video?) and gets yelled at by Norby to get off stage. As she runs off, she runs by Karen. Did she see her in her delusional fog?
Ivy runs out in her angel costume into the middle of Time Square (which the geography of the theater to the location in Times Square is off a tad…) to be stopped by Karen who only wants to return her sunglasses. Karen and Ivy throw some digs at each other, though chances are Ivy won’t remember a single thing in the morning. At the Republican event, John introduces his former roommate who he wants to elect for office. Is roommate code for lover? At the Houstons, bad actor Leo informs his mom that his daddy is walking out on her. But before he can get to the door, he’s stopped at the door. Frank is on a tear to discover the truth but he simply can’t take it and walks out. Tom informs John that he needs to go handle Situation: Ivy instead of staying with him at the party. John is upset, like any lover would be! Ivy, now adding her sunglasses to her angel costume, walks into a liquor shop and enables her habit. Ivy picks some vodka off of the really cool looking shelf. Tom shows up at Ivy’s apartment where Sam is waiting for her. What will they do while they wait? Don’t do it Tom! Ivy and Karen share a drunken moment in Times Square. It’s, well, interesting. Especially when drunk Karen and drunk Ivy sing Rihanna’s “Cheers (Drink to That), which is apropos to their inebriated state, with random street performers. If I saw this scene in the middle of Times Square…well I would not be shocked (I am the man who wrote a site specifc play that was performed near the steps of TKTS). During this traffic-stopping performance, you can spot some interesting sinage including the Bernedette Gypsy billboard and American Idiot. Why? Anyone care to share? And of all the shows, why those two?
Back at Ivy’s apartment, Ivy still wears her costume (Equity violation!) while Karen tries to care for her. Karen is just so gosh darn nice! At five am, Tom and Sam share a moment at a dive where Tom admits the last time he was up at five was to get Rent tickets and Sam for the Bruins’ Stanley Cup victory (go Rangers!). When Tom gets a buzz from John, he tells Sam that he’s slightly taken, which makes Sam now think they’re not on a date. Ellis tells Eileen he’d rather not answer phones and instead co-produce because he landed Rebecca Duvall! Yippee? Eileen puts Snoopy back in his place. Like he could produce! Julia and Michael meet on 9th Ave in front of Westway Diner where Julia discovers Frank threw a punch after seeing the black and blue on his face. She follows it up with “is your family ok?” Interested choice of words. Michael attempts to apologize for their affair, but Julia wants part of the blame. Julia finally comes up with a title to end the episode. What is it? Bombshell.
Tonight’s episode was much juicier than we’ve seen. Some important progress was made on Bombshell, including a new title and a potential new star. Will Tom and John last or is Sam the new beau? While Ivy remember her drunken costarring performance with Karen?  What was that thing on Norber Leo Butz’s head? But the burning question: does Ellis swing both ways to get what he wants? Talk amongst yourselves.