Smash Review: A Demented Fairy Tale

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So much for Ivy and Karen getting friendly ... that all came to an end in "Publicity."

Ellis has been leading Team Manipulation on Smash all season, but Ivy won the evil card when she partnered up with him against Karen.

Randall Trails Rebecca

Even if you aren't a fan of Karen's, you have to feel a tad bit bad for her. She is being played from all sides. Is there anyone in her life that she can truly count on? Not even Dev has stood by her; instead he has been judgmental and secretive.

Her new chorus pals don't seem to be around much anymore, except superficially while working. Karen is a magnet for friends that are threatened by her. Both Ivy and Rebecca befriended her in a "keep your enemy close" kind of way.

They both have reasons to fear her professionally because she is an amazing singer. Plus, there is Derek's attention to her, which further justifies their feelings. But Ivy took it to a new level when she used Ellis to purposefully sabotage Karen.

What a shame. Ivy seemed to be getting over her jealousy and selfish behavior when she returned to the show. Instead, the evil Ivy returned and proved just how fake she's been with Karen. Karma. It's going to be coming for her! It has to be, right?

Then, there is Karen's new "friend," Rebecca. That's an intriguing relationship. Karen admires Rebecca, the movie star, who has the fame that she wants to attain. But at the same time, Rebecca is in awe of Karen's talent. Will Rebecca become threatened by Karen and turn on her?

For now, Rebecca has stood up for Karen ... to a point. She tried to tell Derek about the text message, but quickly let it go when he got upset. She has shown that she will hold her ground and doesn't fear him, so why didn't she make sure he knew the truth?

After Ivy's brilliant performance of “Secondhand White Baby Grand," Rebecca realized that she may be the movie star, but she could easily be outperformed on the stage. Her suggestion that Marilyn should sing that song may well be the beginning of the end for her. I can't see them giving in to her. And I also don't think she will allow herself to be upstaged.

The war for Marilyn is far from over. There will be a coming battle between Rebecca, Ivy, and Karen. Who will come out on top? Who do you think would be the best Marilyn? There are only three more episodes until the show moves to Boston for previews and the season ends.

Who should be Marilyn?


  • Karen's performance of "Run" by Snow Patrol was impressive. One of the best non-musical songs she has sung this season.
  • Karen's daydream Bollywood performance of “A Thousand and One Nights” featuring both her and Dev was odd. I'm not a fan of fantasy performances on the show. There are plenty of opportunities to have authentic situations for singing. The addition of all the characters into fantasy didn't work with the story either. But, despite not liking how the song was incorporated into the episode, it was a fun song and well-done. Plus, it gave Raza Jaffrey the opportunity to sing. The Bollywood theme allowed for everyone to participate, which had to be a blast to film.
  • Ivy's performance of “Secondhand White Baby Grand” was mesmerizing. Though, it is getting a bit repetitive for everyone in the rehearsal room to be transfixed when either Ivy or Karen sings a solo. 

Odds and Ends

  • Runaway Leo. I'm glad he was found safe and sound. Now that Julia and Frank are speaking to each other and in a civil manner, hopefully they can figure out a way to save their family. Whether that means they stay together or separate, we will have to wait to find out.
  • Tom and the lawyer were a good fit, but Tom and Sam are adorable together. They not only fit together, but can laugh, are passionate, and have chemistry.
  • Eileen and Nick. Hmm.... Not really sure what to make of their relationship. She is on the rebound from her dysfunctional marriage, so maybe some fun is what she needs. For the long-term, they don't come across as a good fit.
  • Want a sneak peek at what's to come the rest of the season? Check out our interview with Megan Hilty.

Publicity Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (59 Votes)

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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Smash Season 1 Episode 12 Quotes

You are not an understudy. You are a star.


Derek: I think you'd make a brilliant Marilyn. I see it. You know. In my head.
Karen: Really?