“Smash’s” first episode already set up all those “feel good” moments you expect from primetime television. The characters you want are there: A naive transplant from the Midwest waiting tables to continue auditioning, a Broadway-working chorus member attempting to rise through the ranks, disapproving parents, the jerk choreographer who tries to play the “sleep with me to get the part” card and the writer whose family wants her to settle down, but she just can’t stay away. The characters are cliché and a bit too obvious, but you can’t help but see yourself in at least one of them.
My biggest question is how each episode will sustain the Broadway belting, “behind-the-scenes” musical element without turning into a “Glee” copycat. And what happens to the basic storyline after they pick a Marilyn? My predictions are that Karen gets to play Marilyn, Ivy turns coldly competitive (because though she’s perfectly likeable now, there always has to be a bad guy), Julia gets into some tricky musical versus marriage clashes and Tom continues to be, well, inappropriate. I hope I’m wrong, but that soft “feel good” spot in me also hopes that I’m a little right.