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“Smash”: Season Two debut dynamic

Melissa Hayer Modified: April 24, 2013 at 3:30 pm •  Published: January 31, 2013
(l-r) Megan Hilty as Ivy Lynn, Anjelica Huston as Eileen Rand, Jennifer Hudson as Veronica Moore, Jack Davenport as Derek Wills, Debra Messing as Julia Houston, Christian Borle as Tom Levitt, Krysta Rodriguez as Ana Vargas, Leslie Odom Jr as Sam Strickland, Andy Mientus as Kyle Bishop, Katharine McPhee as Karen Cartwright, Jeremy Jordan as Jimmy Collins -- (Photo by: Mark Seliger/NBC)
(l-r) Megan Hilty as Ivy Lynn, Anjelica Huston as Eileen Rand, Jennifer Hudson as Veronica Moore, Jack Davenport as Derek Wills, Debra Messing as Julia Houston, Christian Borle as Tom Levitt, Krysta Rodriguez as Ana Vargas, Leslie Odom Jr as Sam Strickland, Andy Mientus as Kyle Bishop, Katharine McPhee as Karen Cartwright, Jeremy Jordan as Jimmy Collins -- (Photo by: Mark Seliger/NBC)

 

After some revamping, “Smash” returns for its second season with a two-hour premiere at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 5, before airing at its usual time period at 9 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12.

Joshua Safran replaced showrunner Theresa Rebeck after her exit last spring, and his input into the show has resulted in more energy in the first few episodes I’ve viewed so far of Season Two.

Most of the qualities from the first season of the show remain – entertaining characters, delightful music and delicious behind-the-scenes Broadway drama.

Competitive “Bombshell” starlets Karen (Katharine McPhee) and Ivy (Megan Hilty) are back, along with writing team Julia (Debra Messing) and Tom (Christian Borle), producer Eileen (Anjelica Huston) and director Derek (Jack Davenport).

But some characters aren’t returning for the long-term, however, such as Julia’s husband Frank (Brian d’Arcy James), their son Leo (Emory Cohen), Eileen’s scheming assistant Ellis (Jaime Cepero), and Karen’s paramour Dev (Raza Jaffrey).

New characters introduced include actress Veronica Moore, played by Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson, who becomes a mentor for Karen, and composers Jimmy (Jeremy Jordan, “Newsies”) and Kyle (Andy  Mientus), who have big Broadway dreams.

Although I didn’t have as many problems with the first season of “Smash” as some viewers seemed to have, I enjoy the kinetic vibe Safran and the new cast members have brought to the show.

If you’re already a “Smash” fan, you should be pleased with the start of the second season, and if you’re one of the viewers who wasn’t’ happy with the first season, give the show another shot – it’s worth another look.

– Melissa Hayer

mhayer@opubco.com

Follow me on Twitter: @MelissaHayer


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