Turns out that “Kat McPhee in spandex” may not be sufficient entertainment for an entire dramedy, according to the New Yorker‘s television critic, Emily Nussbaum, on “Hate-Watching Smash“:
… The show’s most intractable problem, however, is the former “American Idol” winner Katherine McPhee, who plays Karen, that shiny-haired Iowan ingénue and human humblebrag. Even when I squint, and grade on a curve, it’s impossible to ignore how bad McPhee’s performance is: the woman was given a one-note character, then took it down a half-note. McPhee has a pretty pop voice, but she plays every scene with a Splenda-flavored neutrality, which might not rankle so much if the show didn’t keep insisting that Karen is a star whom everyone adores. During the last episode, I spent most of my time mentally replacing the awed facial expressions of cast members gazing at Karen as she sings with the horrified expressions of “Game of Thrones” characters staring at King Joffrey as he tortures minions. It helped.
Speaking of intractable problems, seems like staring at print on a monitor screen has reduced my already limited capacity to stare at television shows (even when they’re on the same monitor screen). I’m still watching NYC-22 on Sunday nights, while I can, but I’m way behind on Once Upon A Time on Hulu (even though I like Jennifer Morrison, too). And I haven’t found the time to watch Scandal, which I was mildly interested in as a concept, since IMO Shonda Rimes can usually manage about one-and-a-half seasons of good storytelling before her fangrrl obsessions knot themselves into an unwatchable mess. Leaving aside the usual litany of cable-based shows — I’ll watch them as they reach Netflix — what am I missing right now?