Nashville Recap: History Repeating

Nashville Season 1 RecapDeacon turns into a living, breathing country song in this week’s Nashville: He gets the girl, he kinda loses the girl, he definitely loses another girl, and he’s out a dog and a job. Take it to the bridge! Meanwhile, Juliette tries to drown her sorrows re: Dante, but they just strap on swimmies and float to the top of her list of stuff to ugly cry about. On a related note, Gunnar needs therapy. There, I said it. Let’s review the big stuff that happened in “Why Don’t You Love Me?”

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IT’S AN HONOR JUST TO BE… | The episode opens on Rayna and Deacon at his place, happily spooning and kissing and generally acting quite satisfied with themselves. “I do not ever want to leave this bed,” she says. “Feels like you didn’t,” he replies. (If you’ve already reached your limit for schmoopiness, you might want to look away; we’re just getting started.) They’re interrupted by a call from Maddie, informing her mother that she (“awesome!”) – and Juliette  (“… awesome.” Heh.) – have been nominated in the same Country Music Association Award category.

Juliette gets the news while in a meeting with the private security firm she’s hired to quietly make her Dante problem go away. “He means nothing to me” and the cash and credit cards he’s stolen “means even less,” she insists – but she can’t have the press getting its hands on details about the swindle. Her image just won’t withstand another titillating blow. Ju then hightails it to Edgehill, where Marshall congratulates her but won’t get on board with her plan for the record label to support her – someone who’s never taken home a CMA trophy – more than it’s supporting Rayna – who’s won four out of the nine times she was nominated. He does, however, want her to perform at a celebratory bash he’s throwing for all of Edgehill’s honored artists.

ALL KISS, NO TELL | Will nurses his hangover in Scarlett’s kitchen the morning after The Kiss That Dare Not Speak Its Name. “So, uh, did Gunnar tell you about our night?” he asks, a Stetsoned bundle of nervous energy that explodes when Gunny stumbles out of his bedroom. “We got SO drunk, I didn’t know WHAT I was doin’!” Will says loudly, and it’s painful to see him trying so hard to act like he’s shucking off what happened on that couch. (P.S. If anything truly is foggy, ol’ Wilburino, I’ve got your play-by-play right here.)

After Will leaves, Scarlett knows something is up. “Am I witnessing the death of a bromance?” she teases Gunnar, but he gets all defensive and doesn’t really want to talk about anything, including the demo recording he’s got lined up. How unlike him… except for all of the episodes in which he demonstrates that that’s totally like him. When Gunnar meets with the producer who approached him in the previous episode, the guy dismisses his ballads as OK but really wants to hear his “dark” stuff – aka the songs from Jason’s diary that Gunnar is passing off as his own.

Later, when Gunnar’s demo recording session conflicts with the Edgehill party, Will volunteers to squire Scarlett to the shindig. She returns home and forces Gunnar to play his “Gun for a Mouth” demo for her; after noting how different the tune is from his other work, she realizes it’s Jason’s song and things get tense between the two of them.

IF I DIDN’T KNOW BETTER | I can’t blame Rayna and Deacon for wanting to burrow into that bed forever, because the moment they come out, everyone has an opinion about their reunion. You know what they say, haters gonna… make some really valid points, actually. Tandy’s not sure Rayna (or Deke, for that matter) really wants the “all-or-nothing” type of relationship to which they tend to gravitate. Teddy seriously doubts that Rayna will be able to keep the promise she made him the day Maddie was born: never to tell Deacon that he’s actually the father of Rayna’s older daughter. Coleman is staunchly anti-hook-up, and he approves this message: Rayna is like a drug to an addict like Deacon. Plus, the sponsor adds, what about Stacey?

As it turns out, she’s at Deacon’s place, playing with his pup, cleaning up the joint and apologizing for overreacting where Rayna is concerned. He’s all, no, you were pretty much on the money the first time. She does a U-turn from conciliatory to angry and takes off, and when Sue the dog follows her to the door, Deacon tells her to take the pooch because he’ll be better with her. “You’re damn right he will!” she shoots back. Aw, despite the thankless nature of her role in Deacon’s life and the zero percent probability that he can have a successful romance with anyone who’s not the divine Ms. Jaymes, Stacey was pretty rad. We’ll miss you, Susan Misner.

At the Edgehill party, Deacon can tell Rayna’s hiding something from him (not sure I buy the fact that her deception would suddenly become so apparent – I mean, it’s not like they haven’t seen each other a whole lot throughout the years) and he’s angry that she won’t spill. His frustrations pile up until he unloads on Juliette and quits for real five minutes before she’s scheduled to perform. But after some manly horn-pounding and screaming in his car, Deacon slips into Rayna’s departing limo and earnestly tells her that whatever her secret is, it doesn’t matter. She can tell him everything or nothing, he says – bringing her to tears – “But you can’t tell me you don’t love me, because that’s the one thing I’ll never believe.” Goodness gracious, can Charles Esten sell a line or what? Rayna tells him she loves him and they kiss. Despite my general affection for this pairing – and all of its imperfections – anyone else getting a Buffy-and-Riley-boinking-while-chaos-reigns-around-them vibe? Passion is amazing and all, but I really don’t want to see these two characters I’ve grown to love do stupid things because they’re so focused on each other. Most importantly… oh wait, now they’re singing to each other and she’s wearing his shirt and he’s simultaneously playing the guitar, harmonizing and staring at her like she’s strawberry shortcake on a sultry summer afternoon. What was my point again?

POUR, BABY  | Juliette starts drinking right after she’s nominated, and she doesn’t stop for the rest of the episode. She sips champagne amid bobbleheads of herself (all part of her CMA campaign), quaffs mimosas while looking at dresses, imbibes more booze in the limo on the way to the party and is still knocking ‘em back as she looks for a last-minute replacement for Deacon. As she picks Avery to back her up on stage, the inebriated Ms. Barnes assumes a contorted posture I reserve only for that most dire of circumstances: when your Spanx shift with such alarming swiftness that you’re sure they’re going to shear off one of your lower ribs, so you try to maneuver them back into place with a shimmy and a smile. She makes it through her song – which she sarcastically dedicates to Dante, who’s bought a $17,000 diamond ring with one of her credit cards – then ends the evening by making a (failed) pass at Avery and crying on the couch while Jolene tends to her. “Why doesn’t anybody care?” Ju sobs. Just then, Dante calls, and though we can’t hear what he says, by the way Ju snarls, “What kind of tape?” I’m guessing it’s nothing good. Cheer up, lady. It worked for Kim Kardashian…

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Do you agree with Coleman’s plan to distance himself from both Teddy and Tandy? Did you love Teddy’s geeky little dance at the father-daughter event? Are Rayna and Deacon destined for doom? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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50 Comments
  1. Lauren says:

    LOVED IT!

    • pammy says:

      I was elated that Deacon and Rayna finally connected. They belong together, so let them. The singing and musical talent on this show is phenomenal. Come on powers that be, pick up Season Two!

  2. LOL, I can’t sum it up any better. (Still laughing about the strawberry shortcake) With the finale coming up, I can see the crash and burn waiting in the yonder, but man I’m loving it now!

  3. Maggie says:

    I know that Connie and Hayden get all the awards buzz, but Chip Esten needs to be getting some love, he’s charming and passionate and honest as Deacon and his chemistry with Connie is RIDICULOUS. As someone who grew up watching him on Whose Line is it Anyway, he blows me away week after week on Nashville.

    • Beth says:

      A-freakin’-men!!!

    • Amanda says:

      OMG – I completely forgot he was on Whose Line is It Anyway!!! I’ve been watching Nashville thinking “Man I know him from somewhere” – that’s it!

      And I completely agree with what you said – he has been amazing.

    • Maria says:

      Agreed. Chip Esten is beyond talented. Musical talent, acting chops, looks, he’s the real deal.

    • Elly says:

      Literally thought the same thing watching that duet scene with Rayna. What’s funny is before this, all he really did was comedy shows like “Who’s line is it anyway” Just proof how great he is.

      ABC, if you do not renew this show, I will create a Godzilla monster and let it loose on your offices.

    • Alia says:

      Wait a minute. Chip from Who’s Line is on this show? I’m going to have to start watching it now. (Yes, I’m reading the recap of a show I don’t actually watch. And yes, I realize that’s kind of silly.)

      • Elly says:

        Lol it’s fine :-) yes, he was on the early years of the show when it was Drew Carey and his friends. I was so surprised when I saw him on this show because he seemed so into comedy you’d never guess how multi-talented he is

  4. Amanda says:

    I had so many emotions through this episode, but my face FELL when Sue left with Stacey. He whined, and trotted after her, and I *knew* he was gone with her, and I just couldn’t. The little puppy whines get me every time. I’ll miss that damn dog.

  5. megs says:

    I literally snorted at Juliette’s “I’m guessing that’s not for me….cheap bastard” after finding out Dante bought that $17,000 ring.

  6. Maggie says:

    also, I kind of loved the small moment where Rayna recognized that Tandy likes Bucky (and Bucky likes Tandy), I caught onto it watching them watch the girls sing “Ho, Hey” a couple episodes back, I think it’s sweet.

  7. If Chip Esten isn’t nominated for some awards coming up ahead, something is wrong with the system. Granted, his chances for winning might be slim but he should be on the ballot. Is the show soapy? Of course, but damn it all, Deacon is a helluva character.

    That being said… I’m not liking what they have teased for up ahead. A sex tape? Cliche, and so boring. The show was doing so well without digging into the “classic” soap tropes – and now they’re parading them out with a gusto. Sigh.

    There’s an article on Vulture my friend pointed out to me that caught the expressive eye… gestures the cast made to each other during their performances. All I kept thinking about during the duet by Rayna and Deacon was “man, that gaze is solid.” Deacon, man, everything he does is solid. His anger, his “You’re gonna swoon for me, Rayna” speech in the limo and even his gazes. Solid.

  8. oh gaaaaawd. My emotions are all over the place…man. his is gonna get so ugly and I will die over it because I love Rayna & Deacon so much. I’m very close to tears right now. BRISTEN have ridiculous chemistry

  9. Chablis says:

    Stop please stop with the awful lnicknames.

  10. (Doh, accidently posted this on the wrong recap!) Jonathan Jackson and Hayden Panettiere both grew up on soap operas (she did OLTL and Guiding Light), so it’s easy to see where their chemistry comes from. Bonding over shared experiences, no doubt!

    Awesome episode. Although I could do with less needs-therapy-Gunnar, and more the Gunnar that we first saw writing songs with Scarlett.

  11. Amy says:

    Loved it, all of it! Have to say though, my favorite parts were the Teddy and Maddie father/daughter moments especially her embarrassment at his dorky dancing (ah, brought back memories!). Nice to see him stepping up to be a good dad.

  12. Carla Krae says:

    Such a freakin’ good episode. It’s really nice to wind down my night with Nashville after watching Arrow and Supernatural be all grim and heavy at the end of the season.

    Gosh, Deacon is melty yummy these days.

    • Carla Krae says:

      Oh, and it’s wonderful to see Avery grow up and act like a decent guy. Didn’t know how long the character would be around at first, but consider what they’ve done with him I’m glad he’s still around.

  13. Anon says:

    Love the Buffy reference!!!

  14. The Kaibosh says:

    My heart sank when Deacon gave up his dog named Sue.

  15. Michelle says:

    Shouldn’t Juliette have cancelled her credit cards by now? Stupid things like that bother me. But yeah, Dante’s a skeeze and needs a hit with the karma stick. The rest was pretty good!

    • EF says:

      They did, but they were getting the purchases made prior to the cancellation. Of course, these days you can find out immediately what purchases were made, you wouldn’t have to wait a few days. But I guess it made for the scene in the limo…which was pretty funny with Juliette’s drunken “cheap bastard” line.

      • TXfan says:

        When I first read Michelle’s comment I agreed, then read EF’s, and then it did occur to me: I’m not sure it would work *exactly* the same for charges made in certain countries or certain non-US branches of chains in that (a) I know for a fact that charges I’ve made in some countries with a credit-logoed debit card took longer than normal to post to my statement but (b) I have never cancelled a card under these circumstances and don’t know quite how the later-posting charges would be handled. In other words, the one thing that might make this scenario work would be if the charges reflected purchases where the goods changed into Dante’s hands BEFORE the card was reported stolen but officially posted to account (i.e., were presented from the stores to the card company for payment) AFTER the reporting. It’s as if the weekend lag we’ve all seen occur were to be extended by a couple additional days. Juliette might or might not be on the hook for the money, but she definitely would be finding out less immediately than one normally does.

  16. Jason Mann says:

    Great episodes!! Rayna and Deacon have to be the best couple on TV right now. Every scene they were alone in was magic.

    Sorry to be harsh but Juliette is getting what she deserves. She is always running around talking about I’m the boss, but this whole season she has only made a handful of responsible decisions. Juliette needs to call Glen apologize profusely and beg him to come back again because she doesn’t know the first thing about running her career or who to trust. Everyone saw Dante coming from the first time he showed up at JuJu’s house.

    Scar Gunnar and Will. I didn’t think I would ever think this but I’m starting to think Scar should reconsider Avery because Gunnar does not seem like he is interested in being in a relationship. Throw Will in the mix and Gunnar has become a confused jerk. He needs to get that puppy dog quality back that we fell in love with. Now a days is either drunk with Will or broody (not in a hot way) with Scar.

    I loathe Teddy and everything he does even the crazy dance with Maddie couldn’t help, but he does make a good comparson to Deacon. Teddy is a weak person who felt overshadowed by his famous wife and let his father in law manipulate him (I just realized he is the male Juliette making stupid decision out of spite or ignorance) compared to Deacon who can go toe to toe with strong women and make them better and is happy to be in the background

    • RUCookie says:

      Spot on with your comparisons of Deacon and Teddy… I was screaming at the TV that he has no right to throw barbs here. Rayna has never said anything to Deacon. And while I have no doubt that Teddy and Rayna’s relationship was headed for the crapper, Rayna did not start this ball rolling – it was Teddy. I actually think he does not want her no move on since he had to dump his new girl…

      • Mana Dely says:

        I couldn’t disagree with this “Rayna did not start this ball rolling – it was Teddy” line more.

        While Teddy did end the marriage by sleeping with Peggy and then (to his credit – immediately) going to Rayna and asking for a Divorce, he didn’t start the ball rolling.

        It’s been evident since the series started that while they had a very adult and mature marriage, Rayna wasn’t fully invested in it. Seems pretty obvious (especially considering their conversation with each other where both basically admit that she settled for Teddy when she really wanted Deacon). When they took their time off to figure out what they wanted, Teddy was still trying to convince her to work on it and Rayna hadn’t figured out what she wanted yet.

        To be fair, Rayna was fully planning on doing with Deacon exactly what Teddy and Peggy did (and only a day later)- but Teddy showed up and left her blameless by asking for a divorce.

        This isn’t to say I find the character of Teddy to be more empathetic, I just think the whole point of this show is that the characters are flawed. All of them, Rayna included.

    • Joanne says:

      I agree this was a great episode. Just found out that the show has been renewed for Season 2. YEAH!!!!!!! Deacon is a real man, Teddy is a sniffling wuss. He’s always accusing Rayna of having affairs when it was him that was having one – he deserves Peggy.

  17. Ellen says:

    This is a totally excellent recap – the Buffy reference made my day.

  18. cinde says:

    I must be the only viewer that doesn’t care for Rayna and Deacon together. Deacon lost a decent woman, a fresh beginning, his Dog and his manhood all in one episode. Will his sobriety be next?

    • Louis says:

      I agree with you. I think that Rayna and Deacon have a toxic co-dependant relationship that will always end in tears on both sides. She gave up on him 14 years ago, got pregnant with his kid, married another guy and raised a family with him but kept Deacon in the dark and stringing him along all those years. (Actually, it could be argued that she was stringing Teddy along too, but that’s another story). That deception will be the cause of him losing his sobriety. And, as always, the kids will be the ones who suffer.

      • Mana Dely says:

        I agree with both of you, I was pretty anti-Deacon and Rayna for most of the season. I totally agree with Coleman’s idea that to Deacon, Rayna is an addiction. I don’t think Rayna is good for Deacon. I do think that the actors have an interesting chemistry between them, and I like all of the stuff that could come from a story line involving a relationship like theirs is supposed to be, but I feel like it’s kind of.. too easy. Unless they plan on this being the big powerhouse relationship for a majority of the rest of the show (the romantic anchor, so to speak) I’d rather them not get together.

        I mean what happens now? Rayna is on tour with Juliette, but Deacon quit the tour to be in Nashville. Does he go back to being Rayna’s guitar player – the “sideshow” he laments about earlier in the season? When we met Deacon he was writing and playing songs at the Bluebird every week. I’d rather see more of that than see him wind up secondary to the “Deacon and Rayna relationship” stuff. Plus, what happens to Liam and Rayna’s album? It’s not finished yet, and wasn’t NOT being wrapped up with Deacon what inspired her new music and direction in the first place?

        I’m eh on these two, but I’m a big enough fan of the show that I’m ok with it. I’m missing more of the Deacon / Juliette friendship – they seem like kindred spirits to me. Deacon was obviously a mess 20 years ago too, and made plenty of his own bad decisions so I’d like to see more of that. I feel like if Deacon and Rayna are together, the Deacon/ Juliette friendship will remain in the backseat. Their scenes have great chemistry (better I would say, than the Rayna / Deacon stuff)

  19. Love Deacon and Rayna together. I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts!. What bugs me about this show is poor Scarlet.

    When she was dating Avery he was a total douche, and Gunnar was the sweetest nice guy pining for her.. Now she’s dating Gunnar, he’s a total douche and Avery is the nice guy. Gah!!! Let Scarlet have a nice guy please!

    • Mana Dely says:

      Yes! While I don’t think I’m ever going to see Avery as “the nice guy” or at least not with some major character reworking – (one instance of NOT taking advantage of an inebriated celebrity does not a nice guy make) – I also feel like poor Scarlett is getting the shaft by everyone. Gunner has totally disappeared on her and is acting way more like Avery was, taking Scarlett for granted while he wallows in his own frustration at his life. Exactly what he faulted Avery for doing.

      He also doesn’t write with her anymore, so while I think they’ll move her into doing even more of her own stuff with her album, I am definitely missing those duets, and the softer side of Gunner.

      Plus Scarlett does a great job playing the meek girlfriend who’s confused over her boyfriend’s erratic behavior, but she really shines in scenes where she gets to play the giddy lovable girl and her scenes with Will aren’t cutting it in that regards. Give the girl some happy.

  20. shar says:

    Please don’t break up Rayna and Deacon. I love them. They belong together forever.

  21. Chablis says:

    Kim you are quickly becoming the best recapper. You really like this show and your recaps are great.

  22. Amanda says:

    I’m in love with Rayna // Deacon!!!! It would be awesome if the shows writers would finally keep it going and have them face challenges together! They are superstars that act as real as many!!!

  23. Amanda says:

    Oh I forgot-teddy just needs to go!!!

  24. SaraG says:

    Kim, Please return to your duties of Revenge recaps. Those were almost as good as the show. I’m sorry to know the new guy, but his Revenge caps are BORING!! Please come back!!!

  25. Mana Dely says:

    Am I the only one who wishes they were doing more with Deacon / Juliette? (I’m not saying as a romantic relationship so all of the Rayna/Deacon lovers don’t need to get all up in arms)

    Her screaming “I quit you, I’m so tired of you” after he quit on her reminded me how much I miss the chemistry between them. I really thought that friendship (post the whole sleeping together thing the first couple weeks) was a really interesting dynamic. I loved that when he got arrested, she was there for him. I liked him helping her get her mother into rehab. I loved that when Deacon was supposed to watch her mom and didn’t because he was getting “dry drunk” alone in his apartment, she went to find him, helped him and got him to come on tour with her and get back to doing music. I LOVE the music that they write together (and I prefer the sound/songs of Deacon and Juliette than the ones from Rayna/Deacon). I’m also a fan of the maturity that relationship brings to Juliette’s character, and it’s quite obvious that she is in need of more of that lately.

    I kinda feel like ever since Rayna came back into the picture as a possibility for Deacon, they kind of abandoned this relationship. I’d really like for them to be close friends, because I think it adds more depth to the whole Rayna/Juliette stuff too. Anyone else?

    • I don’t think that Rayna was the cause of the rift between Deacon and Juliette, it was Dante (or at least the fact fact that Juliette gave control over to Dante). I agree I enjoyed the Juliette/Deacon friendship, but I guess the writers are going in another direction. Juliette looks like she’s headed in a downward spiral, I think at some point Deacon will step in (especially when hie sees Dante is out of the picture).

      • Mana Dely says:

        I didn’t really mean that Rayna was the cause of their rift, just that Rayna is a huge distraction for the Deacon character, so his story lines just kind of revolve around that which makes his other friendships secondary. And Deacon doesn’t really care much about Juliette while he’s in his own hugely dramatic will we or won’t we relationship with Rayna. I mean, when he was upset over Rayna before, he left Juliette’s mom alone at an industry party surrounded by alcohol (he insisted she come and volunteered to be her sober companion) and while obviously the way Juliette handled him once Dante came in the picture really worsened that.

        I just feel like Deacon could have done more to try and help her after her manager left to keep her on track, but wasn’t really interested because he was focused on Rayna. I feel like until recently will Dante, Juliette kind of always made sure Deacon was ok and looked out for him, but not the other way around. Obviously Dante changed everything. I feel like Deacon is the best influence on Juliette’s character, and while I like that she is a complicated character who makes bad decisions more often than not, I don’t want to see her spiral completely into a huge mess making even worse decisions. I feel like if anyone can help her get her stuff together it would be Deacon.

  26. That was a sweet episode….I really enjoy Rayna & Deacon together. So much chemistry. Too bad there are only 2 more episodes left this season.

  27. TXfan says:

    “after The Kiss That Dare Not Speak Its Name” – I’d already hit the “Share to Facebook” button after the very first paragraph (SUCH spot-on recapping!), and then you made me laugh so hard and loud the whole building could hear me. Clearly you are on the road to Roots:NashvilleRecaps::Sepinwall:MadMen recaps. (Anyone who doesn’t get this analogy: Run the terms “Sepinwall” and “Mad Men” through your preferred search engine to fully appreciate the compliment.)

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