'Smash' Series Premiere Recap: Who Should Play Marilyn Monroe?

Mon, February 6, 2012 11:50pm EST by 6 Comments
Courtesy of NBC (2)

I’m already shamelessly addicted to NBC’s new toe-tapper. Are you?

The series of premiere of NBC’s Smash introduced us to two very different girls with one very similar dream: Broadway vet Ivy (Megan Hilty) and theatrical newbie Karen (Katharine McPhee) both have their hearts set on playing Marilyn Monroe in a new musical, appropriately titled Marilyn. The stage, and season, is now set for an all-out brawl — but who will be left standing when the curtain finally rises?

That answer will be determined by the brains, and wallets, behind Marilyn: co-writers Julia (Debra Messing) and Tom (Christian Borle); director Derek (Jack Davenport); and über-producer Eileen (Anjelica Huston). And as each member of the team takes sides — Tom is pushing for his old friend Ivy, while Derek (and his man-parts) are clearly Team Karen — tensions are beginning to mount.

And the drama of Smash is hardly relegated to the stage. Between Julia and her husband Frank (Brian d’Arcy James) facing a potentially difficult adoption process, and Eileen taking her soon-to-be-ex-husband Jerry (Michael Cristofer) to court, their home lives are deserving of their own audience. Karen, fortunately, has boyfriend Dev (Raza Jaffrey) to help her handle the insanity of it all.

From the beautifully understated “Never Give All The Heart” to the show-stopping numbers “Let Me Be Your Star” and “The National Pastime,” Marilyn seems like a show I’d pay good money to see. And while “Beautiful,” isn’t an original song, I have to throw kudos to Katharine for belting out a rendition better than Christina Aguilera‘s.

I initially checked out Smash because I’m a sucker for all things song-and-dance — but it turned out to be the show’s personable characters, whip-smart writing, and overall engaging story that kept me wanting an encore.

Smash, welcome to my DVR.

What did YOU think of Smash? Who’s your favorite, or least favorite, character so far? And of course, who do you think should play Marilyn?

— Andy Swift

Follow Andy on Twitter for more Smash updates

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Posted at 9:39 PM on March 17, 2012  

Get over it-Move on, when one door closes natoher Door opens and even a better one. Yes, It was and has been an injustice, we all experience these in our daily living. Chris is a very talented person but, also a very strong individual, you gotta be in the music Entertainment industry. His Talent has been and is well recognized, Thanks To the opportunity Given by American Idol and It’s American Viewers.I am sure Chris will be making records sometime in the future. American Idol is a Great stepping stone regardless, Good Luck Chris!!

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Posted at 11:10 AM on February 18, 2012  

I’m becoming a huge fan of this show! I just found a video of Katharine covering Adele’s “Rumour Has It,” and I have to say that gave the show extra points for me :) Definitely worth checking out: http://www.nbc.com/smash/video/rumor-has-it/1384854

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Posted at 1:47 PM on February 9, 2012  

Good show, I voted Katherine, although it’s a little eerie, when girls dressed up as Marilyn Monroe either look like her or Christina Aguilera.

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Posted at 8:35 AM on February 7, 2012  

McPhee will be Marilyn with a jealous and unstable understudy. I like the show but that was the longest hour of my life. I watched two hours of The Voice that flew by like nothing and then when I thought Smash should be over it was only 10:25. Don’t think I can get through another episode.

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Mr. Hastings

Posted at 12:19 AM on February 7, 2012  

I thought the show has potential. I’m hoping Brian D. James gets to sing or else they are just wasting his talent. I think Megan is much more talented than Katharine, who I think it a bit boring to watch, both acting wise and vocally, although she’s beautiful. And I thought the booty call was totally unnecessary, I mean it’s soooooooo over done! Yes it happens, but it happens in other professions as well! Find another way to prove that the director is a jerk! Put Megan & Katharine together and you have Marilyn, neither possesses both sides of her! I hope it only gets better from here!

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Posted at 11:33 PM on February 6, 2012  

Supposedly we find out who lands the lead early on, though I imagine they’ll keep the other around as understudy to keep the tension.

My guess: McPhee ingenue, with a seething (and eventually villanous) Ivy trying to sleep her way via the director, into the lead role.

Hopefully not, but the pilot had its share of cliches, so wouldn’t be too surprised.

Our take on the pilot: http://wp.me/p1VQBq-p5

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