Smash Season 2 Review “The Dress Rehearsal”

You might have expected this week’s Smash, ‘The Dress Rehearsal’, to be focusing on ‘Bombshell’ over anything else, but the drama behind the scenes of ‘Hit List’ gets just as much attention as the Invited Dress over at Tom’s show. Karen and Jimmy are acting like idiots, with Derek speaking some amount of sense for a change, and there’s a question mark over Bombshell’s future as the event of the season after an unfortunate New York Times article is released.

The nice thing about the episode is how well things are going for Ivy, who was given a bit of a kicking during season one. She’s back in bed with Derek, with things possibly being a bit more exclusive than they were first time around, and her performance in ‘Bombshell’ goes down a storm with audiences. A brief inner debate about whether to go nude on stage is resolved on gut feeling in the moment and, for once, she’s not relying on the approval of others to find her own self-worth.

I adore this version of Ivy, and hope this winning streak continues until the end of the series. Karen, on the other hand, is having a bad time of it with ‘Hit List’, her friendship with roommate Ana and her relationship with both Jimmy and Derek. Adamant that Derek is changing the structure of the show to emphasize Ana’s role more than her own, she accuses him of punishing her and Jimmy for being together. I really don’t think this is what’s going on, and she and Jimmy come across as petulant divas across the hour.

Is this intentional on the writers’ part, for Karen to fall from grace as quickly as she rose up there? It would certainly be a satisfying way to end the series, but I guess the writers might not risk upsetting all of the Karen fans out there. For Ivy fans, however, this twist in the tale is hugely justified, and I just hope there’s a way for both girls to end on a happy and successful note. One thing’s for sure, however, and that’s that Karen should run away from Jimmy and his issues as fast as possible. At this point, I don’t give a stuff what his true identity is, and wish he would just disappear from the story.

There are some obstacles for ‘Bombshell’ also, despite the good reception they got for the dress rehearsal. The New York Times feature on ‘Hit List’ doesn’t just push ‘Bombshell’ to the background, but it also reveals to Tom that Julia had been working on the rival project behind his back. Personally, I don’t think she’s done anything particularly terrible, but you can see Tom’s perspective especially when he’s been so paranoid about failing his first time as director.

Eileen’s love life is back on the rocks over the article – she just can’t catch a break – and Sam finally tells Tom to stuff it with his tiny role on ‘Bombshell’. It’s sad to see how much he’s given up to be with Tom, only for it to go unrewarded at every turn. Will he return to the show after this week, or is this the end for his character?

What did you think of the episode? Do you think Karen and Jimmy were in the right? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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