In the second episode of NBC’s Broadway-centric drama Smash, the new Marilyn musical gets its leading lady—at least for now. As alliances and rivalries fall into place, we’re reveling in a network show that dares to include this line of dialogue: "It takes longer to adopt a baby than it took to write West Side Story." Below, this week’s Smash-Back highlights:
Best Musical Dream Sequence: Who needs a fancy iPad when you have index cards and an old-fashioned corkboard to chart the numbers in your musical? As the Broadway composing team played by Christian Borle and Debra Messing hash out the song order for Marilyn, Messing has an epiphany (while Borle shuffles those cards), setting the scene for Katharine McPhee and Megan Hilty to duet on the stirring opening ballad “Let Me Be Your Star.” Sadly, by the episode’s end, only one ingénue will have star status.
Most Enviable Kitchen: Never mind Broadway marquees: The proof that Julia Houston (Messing) is a writer of Sondheim-level success is her brownstone kitchen. In a city in which most folks can’t fit a barstool next to their fridge, Julia’s got a marble and white oasis (complete with Viking range and glass tile backsplash) that overlooks a spacious dining area and private garden. If your mind wanders during the adoption storyline, you can indulge in mouth-watering real estate porn.
Most Inappropriate Hookup: It’s one thing for theatrical collaborators to… um…collaborate romantically once a show is in rehearsal. But a roll in the hay between a director and an actress he’s considering for the leading role? The sexy interlude between director Derek Wills (Jack Davenport) and Ivy Lynn (Megan Hilty) is sure to create havoc —even though Derek bought some time by casting Ivy as Marilyn Monroe.
Brainiest Blonde: Blondes may have more fun, but Megan Hilty shows that she has the facts to back it up. Whether her character is brushing up on Marilyn Monroe bios, watching every movie the megastar has ever been in (from Clash by Night to Monkey Business), or figuring out ways to give an acceptance speech without letting her top lip “move with the bottom one,” Ivy Lynn shows that her book smarts are just as good as her bed smarts.
Best Blink-and-You’ll-Miss-It Cameos: Smash continues to wink at Broadway insiders with cameos from Broadway insiders. In episode two, we loved spotting Jujamcyn Theatres president Jordan Roth (whispering about a vampire musical) at theater district hangout Bond 45, and Tony-winning Next to Normal composer Tom Kitt emceeing a talent night featuring Megan Hilty. Broadway vet Maddie Corman (Next Fall) made her second appearance as a social worker, and super-agent Joe Machota (Mamma Mia!'s original Sky) and casting director "Bernie" Telsey earned name-checks.