THE "SMASH" REPORT: Season Two, Episode 5, Or, The "C" Plot Thickens

By Kenneth Jones
06 Mar 2013

Christian Borle
Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/NBC

Episode 5 opens in the interior of Broadway's Belasco Theatre, where Bombshell is going to end up if producer Jerry (Michael Cristofer) green-lights the project following the imminent "read-through" of the new version of the script. (We can't completely tell if that really is the Belasco; if it is, it's a shame that episode director David Petrarca didn't pick up some of the burnished murals and stained glass in the 1907 gem, one of Broadway's oldest and most storied venues. It's said to be haunted — here's a Playbill Video tour of it from a couple years back, when the theatre had been renovated and was hosting the musical Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.)

Tom, Derek, librettist Julia (Debra Messing) and dramaturg Peter (Daniel Sunjata) have unusually free and open access to the Belasco considering their show has not been fully written. Their meeting in the auditorium prompts this apparently sincere remark from wistful Tom: "The Belasco! Home of great hopes and crushing failures." Exactly the sort of hoary line that show folk never speak in real life. Here's another such line from this episode, from Derek to Karen: "Get ready. If we get this right, you're going to win every award in town!"

 Continued...