Nashville returned tonight after what felt like an extremely long hiatus, but the show picked off exactly where it left off. The episode, “When You’re Tired of Breaking Other Hearts,” was really good and had an overall theme of actions and consequences. Some of the characters behaved badly, but they learned from their mistakes, while others will probably continue to make the same terrible choices and the audience will continue to wish for their deaths (or is that just me?).
The episode opened with what might be my new favorite scene: Deacon was singing “Love Like Mine” to his puppy, but it wasn’t enough to get the dog to calm down. Deacon was convinced something was wrong so he took the dog to the vet, who happened to be a pretty woman, who hated country music and had no clue Deacon was famous. He seemed to appreciate that and offered to take her to lunch, which turned into being sex at his place. Things were awkward afterward and she took the hint and left, but told him to name his dog.
Deacon did have a reason he couldn’t go to lunch. Juliette was having a concert for her fan club or it was supposed to be for her fan club. This was one of those episodes where Juliette thinks she knows everything and didn’t want to listen to the label’s ideas so she tweeted the private location and way too many people showed up. One of those people was Rayna’s daughter Maddie.
Let’s rewind a little bit. Maddie has been having a hard time with the divorce and earlier in the episode she gave Rayna some serious attitude and even called her a bitch. I have to give Rayna credit for not backhanding her to teach her a lesson, but instead she just grounded her. She relayed the message to Teddy, but he was in his ‘Rayna is the devil and I’m perfect’ mode so he wasn’t really listening. Maddie called him and made up an excuse about studying with a friend and then snuck off to the concert.
There were too many people in the small venue and some shelves ended up falling down. Deacon rushed through the crowd to help Maddie (aw) and Juliette was ushered off stage by her bodyguard. Afterward, she was annoyed that she was blamed for the disaster, even though it was totally and completely her fault. Don’t get me wrong; I love Juliette. She’s my favorite character, but when she gets in this mode where she thinks she knows everything and won’t listen to people with common sense, I want to backhand her.
Maddie was okay, but Rayna was not happy that the accident happened on Teddy’s watch. Deacon tried to calm her down and reminded her of all the times she probably snuck out, which was sweet. It was also a little difficult to watch since the audience knows Maddie is his daughter and poor Deacon has no clue. Teddy continued to be a total jackass when he refused to let Rayna come home with them and reminded her that it was his time with the kids. Paging Harvey Specter…
While all of this was going on, Scarlett was dealing with the aftermath of sleeping with Gunnar. Things were awkward in the morning, but then they got worse when Gunnar came right out and told her that it didn’t mean anything (ouch). It was obvious he was grieving over his brother, but it was hard to watch him treating Scarlett so terribly (who knew I’d be standing up for her? She’s grown on me so much). She reminded Gunnar that they had their audition for Rayna and the record label and he said he’d be there, but of course he didn’t show up.
Instead, Gunnar was getting into it with a police detective, who made it pretty clear that his brother was not a priority to them. He also let the name of the bar he’d been at before he died slip. Scarlett returned home from her audition and Gunnar implies that he’s going to take care of things himself. Scarlett immediately runs to get Deacon and the second he hears the name of the bar, he tells her to stay put, but she refuses. They get there in time to stop Gunnar from going in and Deacon tells him the story of how he made his best friend drive drunk and he wrapped his car around a tree so he understands guilt (Aw, Deacon).
Deacon and Coleman had a heart to heart and Coleman warned Deacon not to sleep with the vet. Once he realized Deacon already had, he told him that he was “one and done.” He pointed out that he had an addiction to Rayna just as much as he did booze and pills. Deacon seemed to take that to heart (and later asked the vet on a real date), but not before he pointed out that Coleman seemed to be addicted too, considering he’d agreed to work with Teddy. Part of me still doesn’t care about this political storyline, but another part of me really does hope that Coleman is plotting to take Teddy down from the inside because he’s the worst.
While we’re on the subject of the worst, let’s talk about Avery. I will always love Jonathan Jackson as original Lucky Spencer on General Hospital and I think he deserved each and every one of the five Emmy awards he won for playing him. But seriously, I don’t know if he’s the problem or if the character is just that terrible, but every time Avery comes onscreen, I want to reach into it and choke the life out of him. Like Juliette, he has that anti-authority attitude and thinks he’s the best at everything. But unlike Juliette, he never, ever learns. When Avery didn’t like the way the tracks were mixed, he stole the masters and burned them. Then he quit and headed back to Nashville and had the nerve to be annoyed when someone mispronounced his name. I only want bad things for him.
Speaking of learning a lesson, Juliette seemed to finally get it once Rayna called her. Rayna let her have it for Maddie and the other kids getting hurt and ordered Juliette to grow up and start taking responsibility. Her words resonated with the younger woman and she decided that she was going to go to the hospital and pay all the medical bills. But before that, she invited her mother and Dante (the addiction counselor) to go on tour with her so they could continue their sessions. This was a big step for Juliette and a huge part of the reason I’m always going to root for her. She’s still trying to find her way and she will drop the bratty act and let people see her vulnerable side and it’s awesome.
Rayna showed up at the house anyway and Teddy was still a jerk about it, but he let her see Maddie. Rayna gave her a guitar that her mother had given her and told her that she understood that she needed an outlet and she made it clear that she loved her, no matter what. Then she headed to New York to be on Katie Couric’s show, which was a very small part of the episode (even though those were the only pictures ABC released ahead of time).
Finally, Gunnar and Scarlett talked and she told him that their night together was a mistake. They headed to their separate bedrooms, but neither of them could sleep so they met up half-dressed in the kitchen. She told him that it hadn’t been about pity and he told her that it wasn’t a mistake. They kissed and headed back to her bed. In the morning, Scarlett got the call from the record company that they want to sign her as a solo act (Uh-oh).
Did you enjoy Nashville’s return? How short-lived with Gunnar and Scarlett’s happiness be this time? Is Deacon really over Rayna? Will Juliette end up regretting the olive branch she gave her mother? Let us know what you think and we’ll see you back here next week.