By Erin Strecker
October 15, 2013 at 05:37 PM EDT
Will Hart/NBC
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This morning, it was announced that Hit List, one of the fictional musicals from NBC’s dearly departed drama Smash, will be performed at 54 Below in New York City. Smash stars (and Hit List composers/performers) Jeremy Jordan, Andy Mientus, and Krysta Rodriguez, will star in the show, which will be presented by Julia Brownell, ex-Smash showrunner Joshua Safran, and Jennifer Ashley Tepper. A release describes Hit List as “a modern fable about identity and the price of fame” that “tells the tragic love story of a wannabe pop singer who transforms herself to become a star and the hidden songwriter she uses to get there – but at what cost?”

The one-night-only event Dec. 9 will have two showtimes, and of course tickets are already sold out.

Obviously, a resurrection of this kind is sure to leave recovering Smash fans with a ton of burning questions.  EW’s Erin Strecker and Smash recapper Hillary Busis worked through their feelings together on AIM, transcript below:



Erin: Mark your calendar and begin to re-plan your life; Chrismakkuh is coming early: DEC 9!!!

Hillary: Okay, I have a hundred thousand burning questions.

1. WHY would they choose to stage Hit List instead of Bombshell?

Erin: Because HIT LIST is a fun downtown hit full of sexy young people?

Hillary: (“Because it’s cheaper,” Anjelica Huston whispers in my ear)

(Her voice like leaves blowing down a dark, lonely sidewalk)

Okay, but more importantly: How can they do this without shining star Karen Cartwright, the most talented triple threat of her generation?

Erin: Shining star Karen has washed her hands of Hit List, but I bet you money Megan Hilty shows up; she’s got to be a good sport.

Hillary: If they cast Megan Hilty in the part that was originally Karen’s…

Erin: I will cry (tears of happiness)

Hillary: …I will simply stop living.

Erin: I’m dead. I’m on the floor at 54 Below. MUCH LIKE ANDY MIENTUS. WHO ALSO DIED, but will still be there for this, apparently.

Hillary: Good for him! I always liked Jimmy’s little house elf.  And only wanted the best for him.


Hillary: Much more so than actual Jimmy, who I think we can agree was by far the worst character on Smash. By a very, very wide margin. Even though the competition was FIERCE.

Erin: Do you think if I bring them my Smash fanfic they will act it out?

Hillary: I prefer to think that all of season 2 was fanfiction written by Karen, so.

Erin: OMG! Can Tom and Ivy just stand in the corner making catty comments into a microphone while Hit List goes on?

Hillary: Mystery Smashience Theater 3000!!! You are a genius. Maybe they’re joined by an animatronic scarfSeriously though, I fail to understand how they’re going to try to make Hit List into a coherent musical.

Erin: Please remind me of the things we know about Hit List.

Hillary: 1. Fame is great!

2. Fame is bad!

3. Showdown at the VMAs!

4. Karen travels up to the heavyside layer


Erin: Important: Will sometimes-director Commodore James Norrington be there?

Hillary: Hit List is what would happen if your parents tried to write and stage a revival of Rent.

Erin: Dead on. Complete with a composer death.

Hillary: Ooo ooo ooo, think the concert will include annoying text message alerts? Remember how that was a plot point once on Smash?

Erin: It’s the only way to communicate, so yes. Smash is nothing but a beautiful fever dream to me these days.

Hillary: Sometimes when I’m caught between dreams and waking, I wonder if it was ever real.

Erin: I can only imagine how Ivy felt when Karen kept getting cast. But back to Hit List. There are like 7 different composers writing music for this thing…including never-before-heard songs. Please tell me all of your dreams for the plot of Hit List.

Hillary: You know, here’s what I think I want:

They should frame this event as a one-night-only concert version of Hit List performed years after the show has closed on Broadway. Sort of like that anniversary performance of Rent with the original cast from a few years back. That would explain why Karen isn’t involved (she has moved to space).

And maybe Kyle is actually a hologram.

And Ivy’s fresh out of rehab, ready for her big comeback.

Erin: Ooh! I would totally be onboard with that.

Hillary: Are you listening, Broadway?! And what are YOUR dearest hopes and dreams for Hit List, Erin?

Erin: I think it would be most fun if they were all DEEPLY in character the whole time, reminiscing — like your idea — about a Broadway run, in between performing Hit List‘s greatest hits. That frees them up from having to give up the details of a plot that probably doesn’t exist, but still allows fans, and them, to celebrate. And clearly Kyle is a hologram.

And if Anjelica Huston just walks through the stage, angry on a phone, it’s perfect.

Hillary: If she throws a bucket of martinis on the audience…

Erin: SHUT UP. Wait.

CLEARLY this whole thing ends with Ellis cutting the lights.

Hillary: GAME, SET, MATCH.

We can’t wait.

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