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'Smash' Season Finale Recap: [Spoiler] Is Cast As Marilyn

Mon, May 14, 2012 11:00pm EDT by Andy Swift 56 Comments
Smash Season Finale

A star is born! Do you think the right girl was chosen?

Not only was the May 14 season finale of Smash the best episode since its critically acclaimed pilot, but it also served to reinforce a few truths I’ve come to accept during the course of the season: Ellis (Jaime Cepero) sucks, Dev (Raza Jaffrey) is a douche, Ivy (Megan Hilty) is chemically imbalanced, and Karen (Katharine McPhee) — well, Karen is a star!

Much to the chagrin of the rest of the creative team, Derek insisted that Karen play Marilyn in the final preview performance, adding an additional layer of stress to the cast and crew of Bombshell. As if it wasn’t enough that Tom (Christian Borle) and Julia (Debra Messing) had to pull a brand-new final number out of their collective butt, Karen had only a few hours to learn the entire show.

No one was more upset with Derek’s choice than Ivy, who decided to not-so-subtly reveal her affair with Dev at the worst possible moment, sending Karen into a Marilyn-style tizzy. After a brief nervous breakdown, she gave Dev back his engagement ring and broke up with him for good. Derek added an extra “f**k you” of his own, telling Dev, “She’s mine now.”

I’ve got to say, it felt really good watching Dev get his head handed to him. He’s been on the decline ever since the pilot, and I wouldn’t be too disappointed if he didn’t stick around for season two. Karen needs a guy who understands what she’s going through — or at the very least, she needs to be single for a while so Derek can try living out one of his little fantasies.

But it wasn’t all bad news on Broadway this week, as Eileen (Anjelica Hustonfinally fired Ellis. He told her he was the one who poisoned Rebecca’s (Uma Thurman) smoothie — bragged about it, in fact — and insinuated he was the only one doing any real producing. Like the true cartoon villain that he is, Ellis vowed revenge before sauntering out of the theater, so it looks like we can anticipate plenty of weasel sightings in season two.

The rewrite and recasting for Bombshell clearly paid off, because Karen was sensational and the crowd loved her. But while she was belting her glorious final number, Ivy was preparing for a curtain call of her own: The final scene revealed the Marilyn-hopeful downing a bottle of pills, leaving her fate in question until the show returns in 2013.

What did you think of the Smash finale? Did it restore your faith in the inconsistent series, or will you not be tuning in when it returns next year? Was Karen the right choice to play Marilyn? And what do you think will happen to Ivy, post-pill binge? Drop your thoughts and theories in the comments section below!

— Andy Swift