Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Saturday 9:00 PM Feb 06, 2012 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
96 votes

By Users

Episode Summary


In the pilot of Smash we are introduced to Tom Levittand Julia Houstona song-writing duo who had planned on taking a break from the business of Broadway but, find themselves drawn back in when they get the desire to produce a musical based around the life of Marilyn Monroe. When a demo of one of the tracks goes viral the project attracts the eye and ear of tenacious producer Eileen Rand and, although causing a conflict that of directorDerek Wills. But the biggest and most important task is to find their Marilyn after, auditioning a range of girls they whittle it down to two but, who do they go for. Ivy Lynn a veteran of the stage who wants to break away from the chorus line to get her break as a lead orKaren Cartwright a fresh talent who is trying to follow her dream of becoming a star.


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  • A Real Disappointment

    I went into Smash with high hopes and high expectations given the the reputations of those in front of and behind the camera. I have to say I was thoroughly disappointed. I know there is not a lot that can be done in the span of a one hour episode but I found the characters very one-dimensional, the plot points predictable and the story tiring. Part of the issue is Katherine McPhee who I just don't find that likable - never liked her on Idol, still don't. It's hard to have a show where the person I am supposed to be rooting for I just find insufferable - your mileage may vary. especially if your are a fan of McPhee.moreless
  • A smashing beginning


    Smash has been often compared with Glee or the old Fame series. It has actually little in common with both of them. No school hopefuls here, but professionals that try to make a living in the tough world of Broadway. The comparison with Glee is strengthened by the inclusion of musical pieces within the episode. However, while in Glee the musical numbers have a life of their own, in Smash they are cleverly integrated into the story.

    The only common ground these three shows have is the fascination of performing.

    However, Smash brings an additional value by showing not just the point of view of the singers, but the whole creative process behind a musical, from the writing to composing to directing and even the pains of production. It makes a great job in conveying the excitement of shaping a new show and this is the main reason why this pilot works almost perfectly. This is helped by a good choice of the cast and by the not conventional treatment of the characters. For example, even if it's obvious that the star of the show is Karen, they made a good job in depicting Ivy in a sympathetic light. You really feel the sadness that they can choose only one of them for the role of Marilyn!

    The "almost" is due to the inclusion of some personal storylines that are not so engaging (Julia's adoption issues, Ellis firing and rehiring) and do not add anything to the episode. At least for this episode, however, the spotlight is elsewhere, and we can enjoy fully the creation of Marilyn!moreless
  • Fantastic

    I was expecting the show to be amazing, but I was not expecting it to live up to my expectations.

    New TV-shows never live up to our expectations these days, but 'Smash' did. The pilot was absolutely fantastic. I was hooked right from the start, and I am so exited to see where they will take this later on in the season.

    I don't really like any of the actors originally, but I have to admit that they were all great, especially Debra Messing. So far, Julia is my favorite character.

    I loved the pilot, and I really hope that they can keep up the good work, and hopefully make the show even better.moreless
  • Not liking it...

    I guess I expected too much from this show but I guess I blame all the over hype from the commercials. Katherine Mcphee's character is just not likable for me. She's supposed to be the main character but I really just cannot stand her. I wont stop there though, I really didn't like any of the characters. The only highlight of the episode was the baseball performance which even then was a little hokey.

    My biggest problem with the episode however, was the ridiculous *subtle* product placement. The whole episode felt like a Mac infomercial. It was incredibly annoying, and it wasn't as if this show needed a huge budget for the episode either, it just didn't make sense.

    Debra Messing's character's family structure was the only thing interesting I found about the episode. Everything else wasn't great especially for a pilot episode.moreless
  • Smashingly great!

    I never thought I would say considering it's not my type of thing..... but I loved it. The pilot was just great: from the acting to the writing. Although I'm not a fan of Katherine Mcphee, I do think she did a good job with her role of someone who wants to make it and prove herself to everyone. That being said, my main issue is that if I had to choose between the two leads it would be a no brainer.... I don't see how it's so difficult, Ivy is so perfect for the role in so many ways. She just has that innocence and fragile persona while still being sexy.

    I truly hope that it does well and that people like it as it's a truly great show.moreless
Brian d'Arcy James

Brian d'Arcy James

Frank Houston

Guest Star

Dylan Baker

Dylan Baker

Karen's Father

Guest Star

Becky Ann Baker

Becky Ann Baker

Karen's Mother

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions