Smash: The Workshop

SMASH: 1.07 “The Workshop”

Marilyn may be having trouble finding investors, but with the news today that Smash was picked up for a second season, it looks like we have the time to find out what’s in store for our musical troupe.

Anyway, back to the episode. While I’m still not 100% sure what a workshop means, we saw it on Monday, and it didn’t go well. And really, there’s a lot of blame to be had, even though all fingers point to the heat. Julia was distracted and wrote a bad script. Ivy was so distracted by her mother that she didn’t put her whole effort into the role. The stress holding down Derek made him lash out at Ivy during intermission. Karen was so wrapped up in the glitz and glamour of showbiz to concentrate on her own part. And Michael, well…

Let’s be honest. The only person who impressed was Michael, mainly because he was spending his time focusing on Julia, letting all that emotion bubble to the surface. Nonetheless, the show didn’t impress, and Marilyn could find itself without an investor.

So now it’s the blame game. Julia may want to keep blaming the heat, but both Tom and Eileen know the truth, and in the end, Michael was the scapegoat. Derek’s clearly not happy (and I’m sure Michael won’t be either). In the end, Marilyn lost one of its best people.

Now, in my humble opinion, I didn’t like Michael all that much — and it’s not just his obsession with Julia that turned me off. Yes, he’s a great singer, but when he performed, something just bothered me. Maybe I just didn’t like the gritty tone of his voice, I’m not sure, but I don’t mind seeing him go. Then again, I’m not a Broadway producer. The bad part, though, will be his reaction. Somehow, if he’s willing to chase Julia down all over the building where they rehearse, nothing will hold him back at lashing out and trying to talk to her now that he’s been fired. Somehow, I think letting him go is just making matters worse.

As for Ivy, I enjoyed seeing her mother, and it was nice to see what she deals with in her family. We saw a glimpse in the pilot. If only they had shown us sooner, we might have a little more sympathy for Ivy and like her more in the leading role.

Karen, meanwhile… Well, what can you say about Karen? Personally, I think it was a mistake that she didn’t go after that opportunity, but she loves the stage, as we saw in her dreamlike flashes to her leading in Marilyn. Would the cast and crew have understood if she left? Her fellow ensemble members say yes, but I’m skeptical. This was an important day, and I somehow doubt Derek would have liked her disappearing on workshop day.

So what do you think? Should she have gone? Did they make a mistake firing Michael? What’s next for Marilyn?

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