THE "SMASH" REPORT: Season Two, Episode 15 or Grin and Bare It

By Ben Rimalower
13 May 2013

Megan Hilty and Katharine McPhee
Photo by Will Hart/NBC

Tom manages to cover Julia's absence with Lin-Manuel ("She's at the bar. Tequila courage!") and with Laura Benanti ("She's in the bathroom."), Norbert Leo Butz ("She's in a taxi.") and Alice Ripley ("She's backstage."), but he's freaking out whilst rearranging the song order to give her a chance to show up.

Then comes the news that Tom and Julia's break-up has been leaked to the press (which we later learn was the handiwork of none other than Eileen herself!). On the phone from Hit List rehearsal, Julia question why, if everyone knows, is it so important for them to do this duet? Tom admits to his sentimentality over the occasion. Julia shows up. It's too late in the song cylce to do the duet they'd planned. Julia takes the stage and shares an Arthur Miller quote and then sings in a simple voice a song about what it means to be a writer living in and out of your work. Tom joins sweetly and afterward, they seem as moved by the underlying montage of their relationship and collaboration as we are.

This is precisely the schmaltz Eileen was going for when she secretly hyped this event as their farewell concert. Tom and Julia part ways as warm friends. All is right.

Except, not quite all. Ana, in her desire to trash Derek for giving in to the blackmail and firing her, tells Ivy that Karen told her that Ivy slept with Derek, which Karen shouldn't have told Ana, at least in Ivy's eyes. Oy, this is where "Smash" loses me.