Nashville's Charles Esten, Chris Carmack & Will Chase Tease 'Messy' Season 2 Finale Cliffhanger

Nashville Season 2 Finale Spoilers Charles EstenNashville fans may feel like they’ve already endured enough of a cliffhanger this season, what with ABC holding off on renewing the series until after all of its other returning dramas had been announced.

But those fans will have to cowboy up, because the country-music saga will wrap its second chapter with a finale that leaves at least one emotional plot line without resolution. (And you thought the car accident destroyed you…)

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“I was joking with Callie [Khouri], our creator, when we were shooting the finale,” Chris Carmack tells TVLine, “that our audience should probably just climb into a bathtub to watch it, because it’s going to be a very wet episode.”

The copious tears might start when Carmack’s sexually conflicted Will succumbs to the pressure in both his sham marriage and the reality show chronicling his life with Layla.

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“The walls are closing in on Will. It’s a lot to handle,” Carmack says. “It’s going to expose how much he’s lying to himself, because the only reason he can keep up this lie is because he has these moments where he can explode, and then come back [to normal]. What you realize when the cameras are on you is, if you explode, that’s what they’re going to show.”

Of course, none of this escapes the new Mrs. Lexington’s notice, either. As the season’s final hour closes, “I would say the honeymoon is over,” he adds.

Nashville Season 2 Finale SpoilersAt least the Deacon-Rayna relationship seems to be on better footing coming out of last week’s episode, which found the two former lovers jamming on stage with their daughter and Daphne. Though the series this year has focused on Deacon and Maddie figuring out how to be father and daughter, Charles Esten says it’s all just an extension of the relationship fans clamor to see reignited.

“The interesting thing about it is that it doesn’t take away from Rayna; it connects him more deeply to Rayna than ever,” the actor explains. “We are [Maddie’s] parents. There’s been a bond from the word go between Deacon and Rayna, and now there’s a physical manifestation of that bond, this beautiful, talented girl.”

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The episode also features two concerts: a benefit Deacon throws for an organization that helped him during recovery and a Highway 65 launch for Rayna’s new album. At the latter, boyfriend Luke asks the First Lady of Country Music a very public question. (If you’ve seen the promo, you know what we’re getting at.)

Will Chase is aware that his good ol’ boy character isn’t beloved by Rayna-Deacon ‘shippers, but he maintains that situations like the one the redhead finds herself in at the end of the hour are “the most fun to watch… [People] want things to be messy, because things are messy,” he tells TVLine, grinning. “You want that kind of messiness in there.”


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  1. Claire says:

    Somebody should really inform Will Chase that actually nobody cares about Luke whatsoever, not just people rooting for Rayna & Deacon. Ever since they turned him into “perfect boyfriend” material he’s been even less bearable. He’s so over the top sweet and caring I fear I’ll get diabetes or sth.

    • abz says:

      I hate these public proposal things that try to trap the other person into saying yes for fear of humiliation. It’s so rude and very predictable on almost every TV show that’s done it. Luke is so desperate. He even acknowledged a few episodes ago that Rayna may not feel the same way he does about her and now he’s proposing to her at her big day in front of hundreds and maybe thousands (if it’s televised) of people knowing that she will most likely say yes so as to not be humiliated. Get rid of this character and devote his screen time to more Will and Juliette.

    • i says:

      I actually care about him. He’s a good guy, charming and kinda cute. I know Rayna and Deacon are endgame but her relationship with Luke is nice.

  2. Shira says:

    Climb to a bathtub?? oh, silly Chris, we’re so beyond that point. We need heavy sedatives to get us through the drama :) :) That’s why Nashville fans are more of a support group! No worries, no one’s complaining. Although ABC, next season, please a little less torture in the renewal process will be appreciated.

    I’m happy with any cliffhanger that doesn’t involve a car crash.

    Also, Will chase, what we want is Rayna and Deacon together. Very simple. We don’t care if it’ll take them time to rebuild their relationship but anything that distract them from it (like Luke Wheeler) is just annoying!! And we’ve had enough of that. So Rayna, Deacon, kiss already, make out and spend the entire season 3 in trying to figure this out and make sweet music while doing it.

  3. Jessica M. says:

    I think the only people that want the messiness of Luke hanging around to be a roadblock for Deacon and Rayna is Will Chase and the writers who seem to think this horrible “love triangle” (I have to put love triangle in quotes because it’s a joke to even call it one) is the best thing since sliced bread for a reason that I – and clearly other viewers, have a hard time understanding. Please writers, don’t be afraid to tackle what would ACTUALLY be a great story….Rayna and Deacon getting together and working through their crap. There is plenty of drama in that.

  4. Emelie says:

    Although I am a huge supporter of Rayna and Deacon I like what Will Chase brings to the show. It is an amazing show with great characters, great writing and outstanding music. I hope season 3 is not it’s last.

  5. Frannie says:

    I hope the writers don’t fall prey to Rayna/Deacon -the love story with a happy ending. they are toxic as a couple.

    • Matt says:

      Thank you for posting this! While I may not use the word ‘toxic,’ I still agree that as much as some fans may disagree, Rayna and Deacon do not belong together. There is a reason why she left him in the first place.

    • Julie says:

      I completely agree. I don’t understand the love for Deacon and Rayna as a couple. They already tried to get back together once and as soon as he found out about Maddie , Deacon went right back to drinking and Rayna almost died. Am I the only person who remembers this? I don’t think Rayna should be destined to be with someone who can’t handle life’s problems. Luke at least talks to her when he is angry, and they work things out.

      • Claire says:

        Why didn’t she stick with Teddy then?

        • Carrie says:

          Cause he lied, cheated, let her dad die and cannot croon a country tune? Also he’s kind of a slime ball pretending to be a good guy who still needs to get his comeuppance. Never mind that he is more self centered than all
          of the limelight loving performers – his attempts to stop Maddie from bonding with Deacon always make me cringe. I kinda of like Luke – he is not end game but Will Chase has been a good addition to the show.

  6. wrstlgirl says:

    I just love Will’s story. It’s the best part of the show for me.

  7. jenandamy says:

    They should take social media, reviews, and comments such as these (or even their lackluster ratings if they wanted) at face value and inform Will Chase that the stark majority of this show’s fan base do not give two craps about this awful “triangle” (that is built on a shamelessly flaunted waxed chest and a couple that are big enough douchebags to name themselves) and they certainly do not want “messy.”

    The writers would do well to not be so cocky this upcoming season (given how close they came to getting the axe) and actually get back to the music and core relationships that made season 1 so wonderful, rather than letting Will Chase spread self-serving rumors and assumptions about what we want and their intentions for the series.

    Luke Wheeler is a waste of space. It certainly doesn’t help that Callie Khouri herself states he was only meant to be a small blip but they enjoy Mr. Chase so much they kept him on. If you run a show based on personal feelings for actors, it’s a problem.

    • LK says:

      The small minority that posts on message boards like this does not equal “the stark majority of the show’s fan base.”

      • jenandamy says:

        Okay, fair enough. Go visit social media. View the responses any time they tweet or post on FB about something wonderful Luke has done or ask how people feel about he and Rayna declaring their undying love for each other.

        Go look at the borderline spam the writers got when the show got renewed and they were thanking everyone for “rallying.”

        Or you could look at the ratings. Season one was much better and lacked a fake pregnancy, a hit man, and useless love triangle plot devices.

        • L says:

          Some people get too wrapped up in shipping. Not everyone who watches the show takes to social media afterwards. Yea the season had issues, but thats not all because of Luke. Personally, I’d like them to dump the Teddy/politics stuff completely and get Scarlett to stop being a lunkhead… but If your asking about Rayna/Deacon… I’d like them to explore their friendship for awhile before having them get back together… its more realistic that way.

          • MA says:

            I think the problem with Luke isn’t so much “shipping” as that he’s part of a larger problem, which is that the showrunners have strayed really far from the most interesting characters and storylines. It’s not just him, but is endemic across the series. (Teddy is another example.) Do that long enough, and it gets boring and people drop off, whether they yell about it on Twitter or not.

  8. Liz says:

    Rayna and Deacon’s relationship hasn’t worked out in the past due to a lot of factors that have now been removed. The writing staff has done a good job this season showing how they’ve both grown and broken the cycle of co-dependency which I always thought was their biggest problem. They still love each other deeply and continuing to pretend they don’t isn’t fair to themselves or anyone else, and it’s not interesting storytelling. I really hope we’ll get the chance to see them give it go in s3.

  9. JAOTAO says:

    Yes, Rayna & Deacon are toxic as they seem to bring out the worst in each other. I like their relationship now with their daughter. I also really like Will Chase. You know, it is refreshing that someone does care enough about someone to be sweet and caring… And I love his voice – Loved him since Smash!

  10. amy says:

    It’s not about whether Deacon and Rayna are good for each other or toxic. It’s about them having a love strong enough to survive through all the crap that’s been thrown at them. If you really think she should be with Luke, you better go watch s1 again. Particularly the “No one will ever love you” duet.

  11. Claire says:

    What is it with people and the “toxic” argument. Seriously? I’m sure Will Chase is an awesome guy and I loved him on SMASH but JESUS….his character is so utterly boring that it actually makes me want to stop watching the show. People who are saying they like what he brings to the show….WHAT exactly does he bring to the show? (Except for great performances, I give him that)

    • Amy H says:

      I agree. I loved WIll Chase on Smash, but he seems uncomfortable in this part. I see him as a Tim McGraw type character, but the connection with Rayna just isn’t there. The fact that so many fans thought he was a plant for the record company proves that he’s not very convincing as a love interest for Rayna. That being said I would bet that tonight sees Rayna say yes to Luke, and then next season she’ll break it off and get back with Deacon.

  12. HD says:

    I completely disagree about Rayna and Deacon bringing out the worst in each other. In fact, I think it’s quite the opposite. I feel like calling them toxic because he struggles with an addiction is such a cop out and actually kind of offensive. Yes, their relationship has been complicated by that factor, but it’s firmly rooted in love, respect and a creativity they bring out in each other that is impossible to compete with and so much fun to watch. With Deacon fully committed to his recovery and the secrets out of the way, if you ask me, that “toxicity” is null and void. No to mention, I think the truth about Maddie coming out has completely changed the game and dynamic of their relationship. It seems like Will Chase fans feel like they have to bash Deacon and Rayna to defend his right to stay on the show, but really they just could find something else to do with him, and I hope they do.

  13. Bill says:

    So true. Hard to believe anybody who watches this show regularly would actually think that Rayna and Deacon were “toxic” for one another. Must be some delusional Luke Wheeler fans out there. By the way, Luke Wheeler is about as interesting as drying paint.

  14. Alice Bargeron says:

    Not sure why , in order to rally behind the Rayna/ Deacon reconnection , the Luke character gets trashed in the process . I enjoy what he brings to the mix , both as an actor and singer . Pulls the country superstar thing off authentically. Having heard him sing more in different genres , his ” Nashville ” performances are pretty darned impressive. Hope he’s there for the long haul .

  15. Wire Dream says:

    “Shippers” are pathetic, embarrassing dregs. Who the f c u k cares what those morons think?

    • Alison says:

      Clearly you care enough to write a nasty, troll-like comment.

      I don’t get the impression the majority of people here are campaigning to have Luke/Will Chase thrown off the show or are trashing him at all, especially since it’s been made clear that he’s sticking around for at least another season. I think the criticism is mainly focused on HOW they’re using him. There’s no rule that Deacon and Rayna can’t get back together and have the Luke character integrated into other storylines. It’s not one or the other.

      • Claire says:

        Even if they have to put him with Rayna (which I don’t support, but it’s their show), FHS, give him a decent storyline and background to make us even remotely care. Liam was just fine.

  16. amy says:

    Yeah I say they put Luke with Juliette. Their characters are both so full of piss-and-vinegar that I think it would be fun to watch. Luke seems like someone who would challenge her more than Avery.

  17. shar says:

    Rayna and Deacon, Juliette and Avery. That’s all I have to say.

  18. Carol says:

    The Luke character is just taking time away from the characters most people are interested in. Just like the Teddy time. I like to see the focus stay on the music and the main characters. We do not need to put more into the mix.