Posted on 10:12 am,
May 8, 2012

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Back right off of the heels of Monday’s penultimate season 1 episode, Smash Chat 16 has arrived! This episode was a recorded skype call, as opposed to editing separate files-although there shouldn’t be too much of a difference!

-Glee Chat host John Thrasher makes his Smash Chat debut! He remarks how odd it is to take a back seat while Jess takes the reigns.

-The recap includes many a-topics, including:

  • The awesome musical number Meg and Kat performed, titled “Smash”.
  • Mitch’s multiple references to “Avenue Q” continue
  • John makes a cool comparison between Eileen and Dumbledore from Harry Potter
  • We all relate how dumb it was for Karen to not notice that anything was wrong with Dev
  • Whodunnit? Who was the one that poisoned Rebecca’s precious smoothie?
  • We suggest that Sneaky Bastard must have been hiding in the Julia/Michael almost kiss scene. Think: “Where’s Waldo?”
  • Mitch and John bounce back and forth off each other about comparisons between Glee and Smash’s songs
  • We all come to the conclusion that it’s stressful to have to read text on screen on a TV show
  • -Previews include Sneaky Bastard getting fired by Eileen, someone taking pills, and the absence of Nick Jonas and Bernadette Peters.-News covers the charts for the Smash album on iTunes, the slightly dropped ratings for last week’s episode, and an EXTREMELY interesting blog titled “Smash: Fact or Fiction” [link].

    Here’s a picture Mitch took in NYC of the SMASH advertisement in Times Square back in December ’11!

This episode's hosts: Mitchel Clow, Jessica O'Neal, Megan Stoll, John Thrasher

  • Julia Christina

    Mitch, every time you say “Spring Fling beer bash extreme!” I yell “EXTREME!” in my best bro voice

    • Mitchel Clow

      Haha YES! :D

  • Kate

    Hey guys, thanks for all the shout-outs :)  I’m honored to be fan of the week! I think I had such a long spiel last week because the episode was out late, so my thoughts had time to marinate :P
    I didn’t watch the last episode, so no extensive criticism this time, but I enjoyed listening to the recap from you guys.

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    I understand Jessica’s point about a lot of primetime TV
    being soapy. I’m a full time college student so I’m pretty selective with what
    I watch…Breaking Bad, Psych, Grimm, Parks & Rec, and Community are the
    shows I typically keep up with, and none of those are straight-up dramas on a
    big network. So I really have no idea what the rest of primetime drama is like;
    Smash’s soapiness might in fact be totally on-trend.


    I love you all – even if I don’t watch next season I’ll keep
    listening! But I might watch the finale next week since my finals will be over

    • Kate

      Oh, a few things: Derek is a shitty director if the only way he thinks he can coax a good performance out of Rebecca is by sleeping with her. And what happened to the adoption storyline??  I guess it’s dead. Or indefinitely postponed. But it’d be nice to have Julia or Frank mention, just in a line or two, about the status of it.
      Regarding the actual Bombshell musical, it kind of surprises me that we haven’t seen any musical numbers featuring Marilyn’s first husband, or Arthur Miller, or JFK, or a contemporary competitive actress like Jane Russell. There’s been like 3 or 4 songs with DiMaggio, though. I guess I’ll just tell myself we haven’t seen the WHOLE musical, and that Julia and Tom weren’t completely myopic with their subject matter. The Norma Jean to Marilyn transition happened with Husband #1 (the name escapes me). The drugs were with Miller. Her relationship with DiMaggio, in comparison, doesn’t have that much dramatic meat to it that you can dig into during a musical. But of course, DiMaggio means they can do a baseball number, so I guess that’s the only thing that matters =P

      • Mitchel Clow

        Hm, I totally forgot about the adoption plot altogether! 

        And of course! You deserved all of the shout outs! I can’t thank you enough for mentioning that fab blog! Can’t wait to talk more in depth with it this summer!!!

      • Megan Stoll

        I’m also a little annoyed that they’ve chosen to focus on her relationship with DiMaggio rather than Arthur Miller. From what I’ve always understood, Marilyn and Arthur had a deeper connection… but I’ll tell myself the same thing you are, Kate – that it is because i’m unable to see the whole musical at this point!

  • KristenKranz

    Just wanted to throw in my 2 cents on the “Who put peanuts in Rebecca’s smoothie?” caper… 
    I honestly think it was Ivy (while it could have easily been Sneaky Bastard too). The reason that I think it’s Ivy is because, in the scene immediately before the smoothie incident, Ivy is talking to Derek about the whole sleeping with Rebecca thing & he mentions she is early for rehearsal. He says this as if its abnormal for her. They then address the whole cheating incident, after which she walks directly backstage. She has more than enough reason to want Rebecca out of the show (sleeping with Derek, she stole her part, etc). Karen clearly does not have the part down yet because they don’t start training the understudies until after previews, so Ivy has the most to gain. Also, I just wanted to mention that, while I really like Ivy, Karen is probably my favorite character on the show. I like that she isn’t underhanded & manipulative like everyone keeps telling her to be. While I’m sure some people see this as boring, and I don’t blame you sometimes, I feel like she is just a character with a lot of integrity & refuses to change herself just because everyone else is telling her to. I love her attitude toward her work & I really hope that we get a chance to see her do some of the Marilyn songs. We have had a great opportunity to see Ivy do quite a few of the numbers (History is Made at Night, Secondhand White Baby Grand, National Pastime, Never Met a Wolf, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, etc), we have only really seen Karen do 2: 20th Century Fox Mambo (which is more of a dance number) & Never Give All the Heart. I would be happy to see either of these girls do the part, but I have to admit, I’m definitely pulling for Karen.

    Thanks for giving us such a great podcast every week. I always look forward to hearing you all trash Sneaky Bastard every week.

    • Megan Stoll

      I like your theory on the smoothie caper, Kristen! I think I might have to agree with you on this one… seems like you’ve got a lot of evidence to blame Ivy as the culprit!

      I’m pulling for Karen, too. She just seems to deserve it more. She’s just so selfless.

      • Kate

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        Wait, WHAT?! Karen Cartwright…SELFLESS??? I think I’m
        going to vomit. I could call Karen many things, but selfless isn’t one of them.

        Every other main character is written with a flaw(s). Ivy? Manipulative.
        Eileen? Insecure. Derek? Attitude (and a myriad of other inconsistently written
        traits, but that’s a different conversation). Tom? Afraid of commitment. Julia?
        Too many damn flaws for me to count. Rebecca? Fear.
        The only real “flaw” they’ve given the Karen character is that she’s
        green….which is a totally fixable problem stemming from ignorance, so it
        isn’t actually a flaw. Even the thing I’m betting the show will use to
        “turn” her into a good Marilyn on opening night – the pain from her
        relationship with Dev and the likely loss of that relationship – isn’t really
        her fault. I could make an argument that Karen wasn’t devoting enough time or
        energy to her relationship lately, but come on. Look at how this show has been
        written and edited.  Dev was the
        one hiding his job drama from Karen. Karen was justified in her jealousy of RJ,
        considering how hot for Dev RJ turned out to be. They want us to put more blame
        on Dev and Ivy for this situation. He gets mad and sleeps with Ivy. Karen gets
        mad, sleeps alone, forgives him, and then steals Sam’s gospel number (yeah, I
        caught the last 5 minutes last week, rolled my eyes, and changed the channel
        when I saw that).

        I think Karen has a sense of entitlement and a corresponding
        laziness. When Ivy was reading every book on Marilyn she could get her hands
        on?  Dev was TRYING to get Karen to
        focus on watching “Some Like it Hot” so she could actually do a little
        preparing…but Karen was more interested in screwing him. She was unprepared and
        unprofessional at the bar mitzvah, and still knocked it out of the park. How am
        I supposed to root for someone like that? Let alone believe she gets all these
        lucky breaks without seeming to work for them or even want them? She didn’t go
        meet with the music exec because she wanted to see Ivy’s famous mom. She gets a
        text saying rehearsal was cancelled because Julia (who has not been in
        rehearsal all week) has the flu, and she zips away without a second thought.  I don’t care how fresh off the bus from
        the Midwest you are. That is not how dedicated, passionate aspiring performers
        behave. I don’t see any drive or passion for theater within her.  But, if I listen to the writers: You’re
        SUPPOSED to be rooting for Karen, because gosh darn it, she’s just so talented
        and sweet! And look, we’re gonna have Ivy sleep with Karen’s boyfriend and (maybe,
        as suggested by another commenter) have Ivy poison Rebecca! So you can’t like
        Ivy, even if she is obviously more talented! YOU MUST LOVE KAREN. KAREN IS


        As for the “selfless” praise, I truly have no idea where you
        guys are getting that. I don’t think she’s unusually nice. I think she’s
        “normal nice”. Sure, she’s excited when Rebecca befriends her…because she’s an
        A-list star and Karen (in her own words about Rebecca) thinks “she’s beautiful
        and famous and I want her life”. 
        She returns Ivy’s glasses (wow, big deal), but earlier in the season she
        wasn’t particularly concerned about Ivy’s vocal issues.

        No matter how desperate the show is for me to jump on the Karen train, I
        refuse. I will tie myself to the tracks and refuse until the very end, people.  If Karen were to go on as Marilyn, I’d
        have wanted it to be because she had actual FLAWS to improve and CHALLENGES to
        overcome and she had ultimately PROVEN herself to be the better Marilyn—not
        because the kick in the pants she needs is Dev’s betrayal, and certainly not
        because she’s the one who “deserves it more” because she’s been written as
        someone who WE MUST LOVE because the writers keep dropping KAREN IS AWESOME AND
        SO INNOCENT anvils on our heads week after week. It’s insulting to the
        audience. And incredibly boring.


        • Gianmarco Segato

          Wow! You know this might go a long way in explaining why there’s this ongoing sort of “meh” attitude about Karen. I neither love her or hate her. I certainly though don’t think she should end up with the Marilyn role though from what you say Kate, I fear we might be heading down that route. I really agree with your statement that this character does not stand out as someone who really “wants” to be on Broadway…certainly not in the way that Ivy does. The creators do seem to be saying “this is the character you should invest in because she’s good, and talented” BUT they haven’t been great at giving us reasons to do so. It’s not enough that she can sing dreamy covers of pop songs decently…Anyway, looking forward to the finale. Even if Karen ends up as Marilyn it doesn’t mean she’ll be front and centre next season. I’m thinking they’ll probably skip forward in time, maybe “Bombshell” will have been running for awhile, and then they’ll focus on the building of a new musical. At the very least, I hope we get to see a lot of the staged, original numbers tonight – that would be a treat!

          • Kate

            I hope you’re right Gianmarco – I’d love it if Karen weren’t front and center next season. But, hey, if she’s broken up  with her boyfriend who helped pay her bills, that would actually be a struggle worthy of watching. Watching her cope with the challenge of being a struggling Broadway actress without a safety net might actually make me sympathize with her.

    • Mitchel Clow

      Hmm, interesting find! I agree that Ivy deff had the opportunity to do it then now that you mention it!

      I think I’ve finally decided I’m rooting for Karen too. I agree with what Meg said: regardless of how “naive” we all might say she is, in the end of the day, she’s a pretty selfless person, which I can relate to!

  • Gianmarco Segato

    Barely any time to listen to the last podcast, watch the current episode, and now getting through the latest podcast! Loved the new voice, John, and his very entertaining and insightful observations. I wanted to say a word about a post (Kate’s I think?) from a week or so ago dealing with the manner in which she feels the show has gone too “soapy”, and now everyone’s just cheating on everyone else and generally behaving badly. When I first read this, I thought, no, I don’t really agree with this. However, a couple of weeks later it really does seem as if the show is going in this direction. I understand Kate’s frustration in that, sure, a tv show needs a bit of this sort of thing to keep things spicy, but the intrigue around putting on a new Broadway musical should be able to provide enough, more than enough fantastic material to fuel the story. It feels a bit as if the creators are doing whatever they can to pull in a mass audience (understandable given the costs of producing Smash), and that means focusing more on the personal lives of the characters and making them as sleazy as they can. That’s a bit of an overstatement, but you get what I mean. I just wouldn’t want them to stray too far from the roots of the show…that’s what makes it unique, and not the “who’s sleeping with who” plots which I imagine you can find just about anywhere on tv.
    And to speak to Roxanne and Mitch from last week…totally agree that the CD should have focused more on the original tunes. I considered buying it, but when I saw how many of the cover songs were included, I just thought, “nah”!

    • Mitchel Clow

      I always look forward to reading your comments, Gianmarco! They’re always so well thought out and articulated.

      I get what you’re saying, in that more people can relate to relationship issues as opposed to the building a Broadway musical from the ground up, and therefore it’s a much easier way for them to draw in a larger crowd.

      Sorry again about the extreme delay in last week’s podcast! As I explained before, it was a result of poor planning, technological issues, and finals week. Shouldn’t happen again though, with us recording the Skype call now! =]

      Thanks for tuning in and listening every week! We do this show for people like you!!!

      • Gianmarco Segato

        Hi Mitchel…sorry, didn’t mean my comment as a criticism at all…school comes first of course! More that I was just wanting to comment on the previous podcast, but just found it easier to put all the comments under this episode. I wanted to add one more thing having now seen the end of the episode and listened to the rest of your podcast. Do any of you, or the listeners out there find it strange the way the whole Rebecca plot unraveled? I get this feeling that the whole arc could have just not been there at all and we wouldn’t have missed anything! They could have simply gone on featuring Ivy and Karen as the rival Marilyns, and spun that storyline for all its potential. I especially feel this way now given the strange ending to all the Rebecaa business…I mean, are they just going to drop it completely? Is she simply going to disappear because she drank a tainted smoothie (seems so lame). I think this plot would have been stronger and more believable if they had given us a bit more about Rebecca’s stage fright/insecurity etc. It just seemed that at one moment she was scheming take over as much of the show as possible (e.g. wanting to sing the “piano” song  etc.) and then, she was bailing! And, I don’t really buy that it was her performance at the preview that scuttled the ending and left the audience less than thrilled…that seemed to have more to do with the structure of the show itself, and the decidedly downer ending (though to quote Julia…”She dies!”)

        • Mitchel Clow

          Oh no, it’s fine! I didn’t take it as a criticism! Haha no worries.

          Now that you mention it, I do find it kind of strange how they ended Rebecca’s storyline. It does seem like they literally just inserted it into the plot.

          However, Rebecca’s coming in did make Ivy and Karen eventually grow closer together, so we’d be without that if not for Rebecca.

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