Karen goes out to confront Dev. He confesses he slept with Ivy and Karen starts breaking down as Dev says they got through this and he doesn't want to go back. Dude, you, collective, didn't get through anything. She didn't know there was anything to get through. Linda calls Karen back up to the stage and she slaps the ring in his hand and goes back to her job. Eileen thanks Karen for her hard work and is about to break it to her gently that they're going to have Ivy step in when Derek interrupts and pulls Karen aside. And then he delivers The Showrunner's Manifesto.
"You, listen to me, okay? I hate collaborating, all right? I hate it. I am an artist and a storyteller and this is my vision, and no one is going to get in my way. If you want a hit, then be quiet and I will give you one and afterwards you can say thank you." And from sea to shining sea, Aaron Sorkin and Dan Harmon and Matthew Weiner and Kurt Sutter and every other egotistical control-freak genius perks up his ears and the rest of us bow down to Saint Rebeck and thank her for this gleaming gem of creative vision she has bestowed upon us, we, the unworthy. Yeah, that Gretchen Wilson number was a real feat of vision and storytelling.
And Sam finally shows up! God, he's adorable. Tom asks Sam to remind him why they do this insane shit again. Sam, who is a magical angel made of tap shoes and ticker-tape parade confetti (go Rangers), tells Tom that it's art, and it's beautiful and joyful. Well, when it isn't ripping your guts out, sure.
Jerry has reappeared, without his inflatable girlfriend this time. He asks Eileen if she's really putting the understudy into a show with no ending. Eileen says Karen's very good and the ending is being fixed, as she's pouring herself a glass of neat whiskey (ha!). Jerry asks how much Eileen has invested, and if she's using their daughter's money. Eileen says she doesn't use Meryl Streep's, er, their daughter as a weapon, unlike some people she could name, and he asks why she doesn't let him help her. Eileen tells him to go away.
Tom is trying out some gospel orchestrations, which Julia shoots down. They argue and Julia asks him to just make it simple. And then she reflects some more on Karen and Karen's inability to, you know, be Ivy. "It's such a good musical," she moans. Oh sure, Julia. Keep telling yourself that. She blurts, "I'm not feeling well" and rushes out of the frame.
Beginning of "Wolf." Karen is in the wings, waiting to go on, and suddenly rips off her wig (but desperately, not in a fun drag queen kind of way) and flees. Out in the lobby, Julia tells Tom she was sick, and he chalks it up to the stress. She says she's never sick, that the last time she threw up she was pregnant with Leo, and I'd be more inclined to blame the disreputable fish and chips Dull Leo just appeared with ten minutes ago, but of course lady on TV throwing up = belly full o' baby. Linda interrupts them to ask if they know where Karen is, because she's gone missing. Guys. She can't have gotten far. She's an idiot in Boston; at the very most she's wandering around Harvard Yard looking for a spare Romney to marry.