I actually liked this episode more than the premiere; I think it gave us a better idea of what’s coming up this season than last week’s did. Though this is Nashville, so a lot of the predictions I make may end up being totally wrong.
- Words cannot express how pleased I am with Rayna and Deacon’s relationship right now. These two are long over due for some romantic bliss, and it makes me so happy that they’ve finally gotten there. Their alone time scenes were great for how sweet and sexy they were, but it was the support they gave each other that I appreciated the most. Not only was Rayna completely understanding about the amount of time Deacon was spending at the hospital (while making it clear that she still missed him), Deacon also showed that he thought everything with her label was just as important, even if Rayna herself thought it was trivial in comparison. Also, all of these little asides about marriage better come to something soon. Don’t toy with me, guys!
- That being said, if Beverly dies (which the promo seemed to hint at) that’s definitely going to put a damper on the wedding planning. It’s interesting that it looks like Beverly’s situation is going to drive a wedge between Scarlett and Deacon. With how close they are, I’m sure they’ll work it out, the question is if it’ll be at the end of next week’s ep, or if it’s going to be more of a season-long arc.
- I had a feeling we were heading to a flat line, because Beverly gave quite a few deathbed speeches, apologizing for not being a good enough mother, reminiscing with Deacon, etc. If she does pass away, I’m glad that Scarlett and Deacon were at least able to get a bit of closure.
- The Gunnar/Scarlett album cover stuff was a little unnecessary, and I think, really only there so Caleb could turn into a jerk out of nowhere and make us hate him a little bit. He’s previously been super supportive of Scarlett, so I don’t totally buy that he suddenly thinks her music career is a waste of time. I get that the writers want the audience to know that Gunnar’s the one for Scarlett, but I don’t think they needed to paint Caleb as the villain to do that. Anyone who watched season 1 knows how great Scar and Gunnar are together, it doesn’t really need to be hammered home at this point.
- It’s always such a treat to hear Maddie and Daphne sing together, and their performance this episode was no exception. I’ve been thinking for awhile that Rayna’s eventually going to bite the bullet and sign Maddie or both the girls to Highway 65, and when she was watching them perform I thought for a minute this might be the time. Of course it turned out she was more interested in the song, but I still think it will happen eventually. If it does it’ll have to be played very carefully; Rayna would come across as self-serving if she does it because her label needs a star act, not because she thinks her girls are talented, old enough, and in need of a label that has their best interests at heart.
- How impressive was Rayna’s semi-stalking of Markus Keen? She really turned on the southern charm to land that deal, though I have a feeling Bucky’s warning about the money it cost means it’s going to end up biting them in the ass.
- Juliette continued to be really, really hard to root for in this episode, starting strong with her teary-eyed interview on Live! With Kelly and Michael (which was genuine, I think?), but then turning it around when her reconciliation with Avery and Cadence was revealed to be a PR stunt. Was it really though? I know that’s what Ju told Jeff, but I get the sense she went there honestly wanting her life with them back, only to get scared away by some crying and a diaper change. Which, to be honest, was a little ridiculous to me, because it was essentially them bringing the baby to her place of employment, which working mothers rarely do anyway. They couldn’t have been that surprised that it didn’t go that well, right? But again, I guess it just depends on where Juliette’s head was at, if she just brought the baby to get the press pics and saw Avery waving her back to the party as an easy way to make her escape, or if she was honestly that spooked by it.
- It’s weird, but as much as I hated that Luke dropped Will from his label, his actions this episode made me like him more than I have in awhile. Even though keeping Will on would have been the honorable thing to do, I thought it was nice that he did everything possible to make sure that was his only option, giving Will an invite to the party, inviting him into conversation with some country bigwigs, etc. He also seemed to be genuinely upset that he had to do it, though he does have that flirtatious PR guru to take his mind off it.
- Looking forward, Will’s gotta be headed for Highway 65, right? I wonder if Rayna ever gets tired of being the bigger person…
- I really felt for Layla this week, further proof that she’s far more likable when she’s a bit distant from Jeff (though not by her choosing in this episode), and when she gets the opportunity to show off her talent. I was glad to see Glenn, not only because he was a friendly face for Layla, but also because I’ve really missed the guy. I think it would be interesting to see him manage Layla because not only would it be great for her career, it could also provide a kind of cool echo to his relationship with Juliette.
What are your thoughts on this episode? Let me know in the comments!