Despite Ratings Challenge, 'Smash' Still Holds Promise

In the wake of a "diss from the boss" -- NBCU CEO Steve Burke, who was caught characterizing "Smash" as "problematic" in a moment he thought was off-camera -- and decreasing ratings, NBC's most-hyped, great-white-hope of a show still "holds promise," writes Anthony Crupi.

One favorable factor is its audience, which tends to skew younger and more female than that of its competition, . Crupi also gets some positive quotes from a TV buyer and a research guy.

Meanwhile, the critics weigh in on the latest episode, which they call the weakest of those they've screened. In fact, one one even suggests that viewers ignore it -- or "at least DVR it and put it on in the background when you're not paying attention, or when you leave the house and your pets need a TV-sitter. Ratings won't drop, and you'll be spared an hour of melodrama that NBC should be ashamed to call a 'Smash,'" Maggie Furlong writes.

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