Warning: Spoilers Ahead!
Eileen asks Derek and Tom to attend the American Theatre Wing Gala and not to get attached to any other projects until she can get the money issues straightened out with the feds. She also lets them know that Karen has been asked to sing a number from Bombshell at the ATW Gala and requests that Julia be there in cocktail attire (which in her words means “no scarves”). Throughout the entire exchange Derek & Tom continually throw digs at each other, so that’s one relationship that hasn’t changed in the new season.
We see Sam and Ivy walking down the streets of New York again. It’s official that Sam is going on tour with Book of Mormon and Ivy can’t help but complain that she can’t even get a callback for a commercial. They end up running into (but first trying to avoid) and old actress “friend” Lisa McMann (played by Annaleigh Ashford!). Lisa has left the business and gone into…. Stationary?? She’s apparently done well for herself and is happy.
Derek ends up in a meeting only to find out that the producers of The Wiz are letting him go because the local news has picked up a story with five more dancers coming forward to sue him for sexual harassment. He finds out that Ronnie was still fighting for him, but it wasn’t enough to keep him on the project.
Eileen’s ex Jerry shows up just as Eileen is finding out that she, along with the creative team, have been uninvited to the ATW Gala. It very much appears that Jerry is behind the ATW ban when Eileen tells Jerry that he owes her and requests that he give her his table for the Gala. He acts surprised…but not really.
Eileen does a conference call with Derek and Tom to let them know that Karen isn’t singing, but they are meeting before the Gala. Even though Tom told Eileen that Julia was meeting with her realtor, we find that Julia is still in bed asleep. Or better yet, wallowing in her sadness. When he tells her about the ATW Gala, Julia begs off and when Tom tries to talk her into it, she basically lays a guilt trip on him. He finally gives her a pass and tells her that he’ll make her excuses to Eileen so that she doesn’t have to go.
Kyle and Karen are sitting at those horrible tables in Times Square! (Really, I can see the Marriott in the background. Go inside. There’s a nice bar there. Order a drink.) He’s showing Karen scratch papers that Jeremy writes on when he’s inspired. Karen isn’t impressed. She can’t really make sense of anything written on the papers and she thinks that she’s been led to believe there’s a musical when there isn’t. Kyle ends up inviting her to their place later that night to a party. He tells her to have a friend play what’s on the paper and then to come to the party if she’s interested in finding out more. She doesn’t commit.
Derek waits outside a pilates studio on a dancer. Daisy is one of the five dancers accusing him of sexual harassment. She tries to avoid him, but he walks with her down the street and he tells her that he never touched her. Daisy says she didn’t say that he touched her. It was interesting to watch the conversation between the two because Daisy is very blunt with him. She tells him that he doesn’t treat his position of power with respect. I thought I saw a moment of understanding on his face as Daisy walked away.
Tom runs into Harvey Fierstein (!!!) on the street and they have a hilarious conversation in which Harvey has heard rumors that Tom and Julia have broken up and that Julia has had a breakdown. Tom quickly lets him know that he and Julia are still a team and in the course of the conversation he tells Harvey that he and Julia are giving a speech at the American Theatre Wing Gala that night. Someone was exaggerating just a little bit I think.
Derek getting drunk at what I am now affectionately calling “Jimmy’s bar” with Jimmy as his bartender. He asks Jimmy, “If you have something someone wants does that mean you can’t sleep with them?” In true Jimmy fashion, he answers “I don’t know, my shift is over.”
When Derek tries to hit on a random woman, she hits him. During this, I’m not sure if it was the punch from the random woman, or perhaps he was drinking absinthe, Derek has this really wild hallucination that involved dancers in tight black dresses and hot pink high heels. This was almost as weird as the strange Bollywood number from season one. I’m really hoping this doesn’t become a normal thing for SMASH.
By the time Tom gets back to the apartment, Julia has already been told that she and Tom are speaking at the ATW Gala. She’s freaking out and running around the apartment trying to get ready and write a speech all at the same time. Tom laughs at her, but doesn’t tell her that it wasn’t actually happening. I could totally see this coming back to bite him. But the fact that Julia is out of bed seems to override anything else.
Ana and Karen (and a few other Bombshell ensemble members) are in their apartment while Ana plays from the pages that Kyle gave Karen. They all like what they here and someone makes a comment about him being “Jonathan Larsen-good.” It was funny to hear that little reference there.
When Julia shows up to the ATW Gala she immediately walks up to Miriam and starts asking when in the program they would speaking at the event. Miriam just looks confused. Miriam informs Julia that they weren’t invited to speak as Tom walks up. When Julia realizes that Tom lied to her she’s not only angry at Tom, she’s thoroughly embarrassed that the fools she’s made of herself. Tom apologizes and says he didn’t know what to say because she was so excited and it got her out of bed. He’d been so worried about her. Tom is nearly at his wits end with Julia and finally tells her that the rumor is going around that Julia couldn’t hack it on Bombshell and that Tom should find a new writing partner. As angry as he is, he tells her, “I don’t want a new writing partner. I just want my old one back.”
Karen and Ana head to Brooklyn to Kyle and Jimmy’s party. I find the apartment they live in hilarious. I know there’s no way that they could afford something like that on a bartender’s paycheck. But, hey, it’s television, right? When Ana sees Jimmy for the first time she tells Karen how hot he is. Karen goes over to speak with Jimmy and they share some verbal jabs with heavy sexual undertones. I can already see that this is going to be a love/hate relationship between the two of them.
Derek shows up drunk on Ivy’s front stoop. She asks why he’s there and he still is wanting to know what he’s done wrong. He’s says “I’m not a complete monster, am I?” Ivy just wants to know why he cares what she thinks now. When she mentions that she’s thinking of leaving the business he tells her she’s too talented to quit. When she mentions that she wasn’t Marilyn, he says “You weren’t MY Marilyn. What do I know?”
Miriam and Eileen have a tense conversation at the ATW Gala in which she basically tells Eileen that she and Tom & Julia need to leave because Miriam has an organization to protect and that she can’t have even a hint of impropriety associated with the organization.
Meanwhile, in Brooklyn, Karen and Jimmy are doing some serious flirting that ends with Karen practically giving him a lap dance while singing one of his songs to him surrounded by everyone at the party. He looks extremely uncomfortable and it ends in Jimmy, Kyle and Karen yelling at each other on a dark street while Jimmy accuses Karen of stealing his songs and telling Kyle he doesn’t write anything for their musical. He has some serious anger issues to deal with and I wonder what on earth is at the root of these issues.
Eileen, Tom and Julia make a phone call to Karen and get her voice mail, before calling Ivy. Ivy and Derek show up and they crash the party by jumping on stage and Ivy sings the HELL of out a song we hadn’t heard before. “They Just Keep Moving the Line” is a good number ad Megan Hilty makes if fabulous. I swear I could listen to her sing the phone book. When Ivy’s finished the number, the entire Bombshell team walks out.
Eileen and her ex Jerry run into each other in the lobby of the office building. He notes that she made quite the impression at the ATW Gala. She lets him know that the U.S. Attorney’s wife was present and she liked the performance so much that they’d been given permission to resume work on Bombshell. When Jerry asks how she’s going to resume work on the show when she doesn’t have any money she doesn’t have an answer. He asks how much she needs and she informs him she will have her lawyer draw up a contract.
Kyle isn’t speaking to Jimmy. Jimmy apologizes for overreacting, but can’t help but say how much Karen annoys him. Kyle tells him, “I’ve been cleaning up after you since you were a kid” giving a little insight into the history that the two share. I have a feeling this should be an interesting relationship to watch as well. Kyle also tells him that writing the book for the musical isn’t just sitting and watching him write the songs.
Jimmy shows up at Karen & Ana’s apartment, thanks in part to Ana leaving Karen’s headshot on the fridge the night before. Jimmy gives Karen a USB jump drive and tells her that it has everything he’s written so far and that the reason he was giving it to her was because he owed it to Kyle.
Ivy shows up at Derek’s apartment to talk with him again and realizes that Karen is over (sharing Jimmy’s music with Derek) and Karen can’t help the dig “I heard you saved the day. I was on the subway when they called me” letting Ivy know that she was second best again. Really, this is a side of Karen that I do NOT like at all.
The show closes with Ivy looking sad as she the elevator doors close.
I found the second hour of the show to have more Broadway cameos, which made me very, very happy. I wonder where the rest of the story is going from here. Obviously they are going to land on Broadway, but there are so many side stories going on right now that I’m not sure what to expect. With Jimmy & Kyle. With Jimmy & Karen. With Tom & Julia. With Jimmy & Kyle’s musical. There is so much going on right now that it almost makes my head spin. What did you think folks? I’m thinking that next week should be interesting. Let me know if you want me to keep up the recaps. I may try to keep with it through the rest of the season, but I’m not sure yet.