Nashville Recap: Stall and Chain

Nashville Season 2 Recap Something old, something new, something closeted, something blue – yep, Nashville‘s Will and Layla have all their matrimonial boxes checked in this week’s episode.

Consequently, there’s absolutely nothing (save Gunnar… and Layla’s parents… and the laws of physical attraction) stopping them from rushing into the worst-conceived partnership since Kimye and Vogue.

Elsewhere, Maddie gets into the least salacious Internet trouble a teen can find – don’t worry, Rayna still freaks out about it – and Scarlett flings a sass boomerang at Juliette but neglects to duck. (Rookie mistake, Scar.)

Let’s review what went down in “Your Wild Life’s Gonna Get You Down.”

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COLD FEET? | Will and Layla return to Nashville and excitedly tell Gunnar they’re engaged. Layla shows him her ring, and he shows Will his disapproving face. But Will’s roomie isn’t the only one who’s not on board with the upcoming wedding: Jeff Fordham asks whether Layla has another little reality show runner-up in the oven, and when Will replies that she does not, the Edgehill head wonders if there’s another reason they’re rushing down the aisle. Will’s all, “I love her! She’s hot! I’m straight!” and Jeff seems to buy it, but still, Mr. Lexington is a bit shaken.

When Layla’s parents phone to make it clear that they won’t be throwing rice on their daughter’s big day, it causes her to have some major second thoughts. Though I sympathize with Will’s plight (and think Chris Carmack is doing really fine work in this storyline), I want to throttle that earnest look right off his face when he gets in close and tells Layla to focus on what’s important. “For me, it’s you,” he lies, inching ever closer to ruining both of their lives.

Little does Will know, it may all be in vain – which becomes clear when Jeff ambles up to Gunnar backstage at a concert and point-blank asks him if Edgehill’s newest up-and-comer prefers the company of cowboys. Gunnar evades in a way that seems to satisfy Jeff; later, with a better understanding of exactly how devastating it would be to Will’s career if the secret got out, Gunnar shows up at the chapel where Layla and Will are getting married and lets Will know he covered for him.

A relieved Will nearly cries as he thanks Gunnar and promises he’ll be a good husband; what’s very sad about this scene is that he honestly thinks pretending to be something he’s not is a viable – hell, a positive — choice for the rest of his life.  With Gunnar looking on, Will and Layla are wed.

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MADDIE: INTERNET SENSATION? | Luke and Rayna think the upcoming Nashville date of his tour – which will coincide with a livestream performance of Rayna’s latest single – is a great opportunity for her girls to meet his son, Colt. Colt is into hip-hop and big headphones and talking in ways that no kid that age would ever talk. Just a few minutes after meeting him, we learn that Colt – who looks like he just stepped out of the So Fly! section of the J.C. Penney catalogue — “ain’t really feelin'” his dad’s country tunes and that he’s more into “Skrillex, EDM, rap… anything with sick beats.” (Side note: Good God.)

Colt is impressed, though, by Maddie and Daphne’s “Miss Mary Mack”-meets-“Cups” rhythms as they sing him a folky song. So he records them, remixes them and then posts them online – news Rayna is not happy to hear after she comes off stage.

When Teddy shows up to take the girls home, Maddie defiantly announces that she’s going to stick around to hear Deacon sing with Will and Luke. (We’ll deal with the whole Teddy/Megan/Deacon debacle in a minute.) And, because she’s told Colt that Deacon is her biological dad, that news has now trickled down to a ticked-off Luke… who peevishly informs Rayna that he didn’t like being in the dark.

Rayna loses it with her older daughter, demanding that she take the “Maddie Claybourne” video off the Web. “I don’t want people that you don’t even know weighing in on your life!” Rayna cries, her voice getting thick after Maddie refers to herself as “illegitimate.” (Side note: Score one for teen insolence here, because while Maddie seems just pissed and bored, a wounded Rayna turns into a teary mess in just a few moments’ time.) At the very last minute, Maddie seems affected by her mom’s concern for her, and the pair embraces.

Still, Luke doesn’t know where he stands with his redheaded lady – and he seems a bit jealous of Deacon, no? “We have a daughter together, and a history,” she acknowledges. “But you’re my present and, I hope, my future.”

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THE INEVITABLE | So, back to Teddy at the concert. He arrives already in a snit about Maddie lying in order to spend more time with Deacon, so when he sees her chillin’ with her biodaddy, Teddy loses it. Deacon, I might add, does not help matters by challenging the mayor’s authority in front of Maddie – and everyone’s in a bad mood by the time Deke finds Teddy and Megan arguing about their “terrible, awful mistake.”

In seconds, Deacon realizes what went on between his woman and Rayna’s ex. There’s some collar-grabbing and wall-punching, then the next thing we know, Megan’s crying and Deacon’s packing a bag at his house. Wait, Deke, you live there; give lady lawyer a pro bono boot out the door! Worried that he’ll jettison his sobriety when he leaves the house, she wails for him think of his kid and his career. “I’m done bein’ saved,” he coldly informs her.

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TENTH VERSE, SAME AS THE FIRST | Literally the second thing out of Scarlett’s mouth in this episode is a complaint that touring with Juliette will get in the way of finishing her album, and it doesn’t get much better from there. You guys know how I feel about Goldilocks’ whining about the hard life of a rockstar, so let’s just deal with the basics: She writes a new ballad with Avery, she directly disobeys Ju’s orders not to perform it during her opening act (though a minute part of me loved her moxy in dedicating the song to Ms. Barnes), and she pops a pill after Juliette gives her a sharp dressing-down. (Side note originally raised by a savvy TVLine reader in a prior recap’s comments: Exactly how many pills were in that bottle Liam gave her? They seem to be lasting a long time.)

But Scar’s small act of onstage defiance earns her a modicum of respect from the tour’s headliner, who refuses to fire her (yes, Scarlett begs again to be let out of the harsh tyranny of tour life) and says her “raw nerve” is what’s going to make her great. And then, after noting that Scarlett seems high, Juliette apologizes to Avery for being jealous of her blonde tourmate and confesses that she’s scared of her feelings for the newly minted producer. “You have my heart,” she says warily though honestly. “You’re capable of destroying me.”

Now it’s your turn.  What did you think of the episode? Did you enjoy Ju’s impression of Scarlett’s “squirrelly” face as much as I did? Do you think Gunnar truly convinced Jeff of Will’s heterosexuality? And would it be OK if we never saw Colt again? Sound off in the comments!