“Smash” Recap 108: “Welcome To My Level”


It’s a week after the showcase. Ivy and Sam conduct a post-mortem in dance class with Sam asking the dreaded question: “You don’t think it’s dead, do you?”

Cut to Julia, depressed in bed with a bowl of grapes. “We’re dead.” She’s upset not only because Eileen isn’t returning her calls but also because of Leo’s rapidly approaching court date. Frank is determined to cheer her up and launches into a Guitar Hero-assisted rendition of Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds.” Number one, white people singing reggae is a dicey proposition at best. Second, are you really singing a Bob Marley song to distract your wife from your son’s marijuana charge?

Eileen is ensconced in her new apartment, on the phone with Derek about Karen and someone named Ryan. In walks Ellis, bearing a CD delivery. He offers his services, since with the workshop over Tom needs less help. She starts putting together a couple of tasks for him before being interrupted by another knock at the door. It’s Eileen’s daughter Kate (Grace Gummar), back from the Peace Corps or something.

Karen meets clandestinely with Derek, delivering a copy of her demo. He tells her that “we” have come up with a new approach to Marilyn along with a new song that they want Karen to sing. But Tom and Julia can’t know.

Ellis reports back to Tom, telling him that Eileen didn’t say anything specific about Marilyn but that she was on the phone with Derek about Karen. Tom calls Julia, who’s walking through a park and oh hell, she’s there to meet Michael. Amazingly they both demonstrate a lick of sense, realizing that picking their loathsome affair back up was a huge mistake. He also takes being fired amazingly well.

Karen and Dev discuss the implications of her clandestine singing mission. She threatens to make a curry for dinner but Dev begs off. He has to meet R.J. the hottie Times reporter to strategize ways to take Dev’s rival Paul out of contention for the press secretary job.

Cut to Dev and R.J. in a bar, engaged in said strategizing. I will admit it’s been a while since my last journalistic ethics class but this strikes me as a serious ethical breach on her part. Anyway, R.J. has a line on some “Anthony Weiner-style photos” that Paul sent to the daughter of the mayor of Washington DC. For some unknown reason Dev balks at leaking them.

Over at Eileen’s, Kate tells her mother that Jerry has transferred a bunch of money into Kate’s trust fund.

The Houston family meets with humpy lawyer John who advises them that the loitering for drugs charge has been dismissed so Leo is only facing a “failure to obey park signs” charge. Frank sensibly suggests just paying the fine but John says that Leo would be compelled to reveal the conviction on college applications. Really? Colleges mandate disclosure of what amounts to a ticket now?

Karen meets with Derek again, balking at going behind Tom and Julia’s back. Derek unleashes a line of BS about how it isn’t a thing as he leads Karen inside a rehearsal space to meet singer-songwriter-producer Ryan Tedder.

Leo’s court date arrives and John and the judge do a little legal song-and-dance. Unable to let a song-and-dance go by undisturbed, Julia hops up and almost blows things but John makes the save. So, that’s that story done, I guess.

Kate calls a Rand family summit wherein she pretty much rips Jerry several new ones for jerking Eileen around over money. No Manhattans were harmed during the filming of this scene. In the middle of it Kate totally busts Ellis eavesdropping. Ellis answers Eileen’s phone. It’s Derek, informing Eileen that tomorrow is on. Ellis probes for more intel but Derek shuts him down.

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