“Am I in the right place?” — Rebecca Duvall in “Understudy”

Uma Thurman’s Rebecca Duvall was a no-show until the final two minutes of Monday’s (April 9) episode of “Smash,” and for all the pomp and circumstance surrounding her arrival, surely the rest of the cast, chorus, writers and director working on “Bombshell” were expecting someone more Marilyn Monroe-like to walk through the rehearsal room doors.

And from the look of the previews for next week, it seems that her appearance and lack of Broadway experience aren’t the only things that might make her more trouble than her potential star power is worth, as she starts requesting rewrites and saying things like, “I’d rather see less singing and dancing, you know?”

But to her benefit, it seemed that hardly anyone was in the right place in “Understudy,” as Ivy (Megan Hilty) stalks the rest of the cast from behind a van while daydreaming about returning to the show and looking picture-perfect as Marilyn; Karen (Katharine McPhee) fumbles her way through blocking as Marilyn’s understudy while Rebecca is held up in Cuba; Dev (Raza Jaffrey) gets into a fistfight with Derek (Jack Davenport) for making a pass at Karen; and Eileen (Anjelica Huston) gets a new investor in the form of ’70s rocker Randy Cobra and in turn burns the contracts of the old fogy investors for whom she even cast Rebecca in the first place.

Julia (Debra Messing) and Tom (Christian Borle) are exactly where they belong, though — by each other’s side on their 10th anniversary together as a writing team, in spite of the fact that neither of them are on solid footing with their romantic partners.

What did you think of “Understudy”? Do you think Rebecca will surprise us all and do well as Marilyn? Will Eileen regret burning those contracts?

Posted by:Jennifer Harper