By Kenneth Jones
06 Feb 2013
|Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/NBC|
Oh, "Smash," you've been away for eight months and we've missed you! Your undercooked dialogue, your New York City locations, your inconsistent characters, your completely arresting musical numbers! They were all in evidence in the Feb. 5 Season Two premiere, a packaging of a pair of hour-long episodes into one two-hour block that bluntly clipped characters and plot threads from last season (which ended with the Boston tryout of the musical Bombshell, about the life of Marilyn Monroe) and introduced new faces — at least one of them completely bereft of sideburns — to the series.
"Smash" creator and showrunner Theresa Rebeck (the Broadway playwright whose play Dead Accounts was short-lived and critically dismissed earlier this season) got the boot from "Smash" last year; viewership had dipped, word of mouth was bad, critics and theatre fans grumbled and Rebeck took the fall. She's no longer telling the "Smash" story, new executive producer Joshua Safran ("Gossip Girl") is, and he's done some housecleaning — in a musical montage.