Welcome to ShowBiz: “Smash” Review

Written by Hana Elniwairi March 05, 2012

“There’s a broken heart for every light on Broadway.”

This new NBC show premiered a couple of weeks ago, to a good amount of success. “Smash” gives an account of the trials and tribulations in competitive show business, and Broadway. Featuring a rather impressive cast, the show premiered with a pretty strong pilot.

The People

What drew me to the show was not the idea, or the plot, but mostly two members of its cast: the lovely Katherine McPhee, and Jack Davenport. I have been a fan of McPhee’s music and just her in general, and I was looking forward to see her in a lead position. I was not disappointed. Karen, her character, is the archetype of the struggling actress who is trying desperately to make her dreams come true, despite everyone (including her parents) doubting her. Her character is intriguing and I look forward to seeing more of her.

Jack Davenport’s character on “Smash” is so different from what I expected. He’s rude, impatient, and wants to gain directorial fame by any means necessary. He will put his lead through hell and back, if in the end, it leads him to fame. It’s not what I expected from the normally charming Davenport and I like being surprised like that.

Of course, the cast also includes names such as Debra Messing (“Will and Grace”), and Anjelica Huston (“The Addams Family”, “Prizzi’s Honor”, etc.). So as far as talent, this show is not wanting for anything. Their characters are each interesting, and portrayed rather well.

So how can a show like this not succeed?

The Content

We’ve seen many shows that had everything they needed to be a hit, but it just didn’t work. While “Smash” is not there yet, I feel like it could fall into that category. Granted, the plot and storylines available are quite good, and could flourish into something great, but from watching the pilot, I couldn’t help but feel like there’s a little bit too much. Maybe it was because I’m not exactly a theatre buff, or my horrible attention span, but there was too much packed into one episode. However, I think that, if handled well, those storylines could be spread out and given enough time to mature and come to fruition.

Another issue is the audience. I know so many people who cringe at the idea of musicals and Broadway in general, and I think that this might be a challenge that may stop “Smash” from becoming a world-wide phenomenon. Then again, “Glee” did it, and personally, I think “Smash” has the potential to be so much better than “Glee”, as it takes you out of that miserable place called high school.

Personally, I think even if you’re not a big theatre buff, or a huge fan of musicals, there’s enough drame for you to find something interesting in “Smash”. So go give it a look; you might end up liking it!

My Rating: 6.5/10

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About Hana Elniwairi

Hana is a student at UWO, studying Psychology and Creative Writing. She enjoys watching movies and TV, no matter how much she complains about them or claims otherwise.

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