Nashville Season Finale Recap: Ball and Chain?

Nashville Season 2 Finale RecapThis post contains spoilers from Wednesday’s season finale of Nashville. If you haven’t watched, flee!

Yes yes, y’all – that‘s how you end a season of Nashville.

No car crashes, no fake pregnancies, none of that business that sent last year’s finale flipping end-over-end-outta-control like Deacon’s SUV – just the characters we love doing what we hope/fear they’d do, and a summer over which we can obsessively mull the consequences.

If you were like me, you watched Luke get down on one knee in this week’s promo and grumbled, “Way to spike the cliffhanger, ABC.” But they totally didn’t! In fact, what takes place after that big question is likely to put the delta in your dawn.

Plus, Rayna and Juliette share scenes that are pure perfection (why does it take so much to get the two of them in the same room and talking on this level?), Scarlett makes a big decision (which Gunnar possibly undoes with a couple of chords) and Will’s unraveling clicks into warp speed. Read on for the highlights of “On the Other Hand.”

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THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM | Rayna’s just wrapped an album-launch strategy session at home with Tandy and Bucky – upshot: a performance on Good Morning America is the solution to all of their problems — when Deacon and Maddie enter, all buddy-buddy. Maddie gives them both a framed picture of their group performance at the military base but quickly turns sour when both of her bioparents agree that she’s still too young to be a Highway 65 artist. As she stomps off, a newly arrived Luke wonders, “Who fluffed her neck feathers?” (Side note: Totally stealing that.)

Over at Juliette’s, Ju wakes up to find Avery writing her a song, but she can’t hear the whole thing yet, because he wants the token of his love to be a surprise. They’re very snuggly for a minute or two before Jeff Fordham calls. Avery lets the call go to voicemail, noting how often the Edgehill exec has been dogging him lately. Juliette wonders if her man is considering a deal with the turtle devil. “I’m not gonna get into bed with Jeff Fordham,” Avery scoffs. Juliette just looks like she wants to pull her wool socks up all the way over her head and disappear, but she smiles and tries to act normal.

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SEE YA, SCAR | This is the point where the hour starts to get deliciously complicated, so let’s get Scarlett outta the way first. Deacon’s niece has decided that she’s going to go back to school at Ole Miss. (Side note: Did she not finish? Are we talking grad school? If you caught a piece of dialogue I missed, log it in the comments.) When Scarlett and Zoey hang out one last time, Zoey gives her a flash drive containing “It Ain’t Yours to Throw Away,” the song Gunnar wrote about/for her when she was in the hospital. She doesn’t hear it, though, until she stops by the Bluebird to bid him farewell, and he asks if he can serenade her. So he sings, and she cries and harmonizes, and it’s quite pretty. After the last chord is played, Gunnar looks his ex straight in her china-doll face and declares, “I really don’t think you should go.”

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THIS MEANS WAR | Later on, Juliette takes her own call from Jeff. She lies that she’s already told Avery everything and he’s cool with it, but Fordham knows better: He instructs her to get herself fired from Highway 65 and return to Edgehill, or he’ll spill all. (That’s the short version; I filtered out a lot of the smarm. You’re welcome.)

And because Jeff is such a miserable multitasker, he also manages to get GMA to bump Rayna for Will. What? Bucky’s pretty sure the morning show only agreed to postpone a big name (Rayna) for an unknown (Will) because Jeff also promised the morning show that they could have Luke Wheeler at some point, too – a fact that gets Rayna mighty hot. “He wants a war, he’ll get a war,” she vows.

Before you can say “calling in a favor,” Teddy has helped Rayna secure a 70,000-seat stadium for an album-launch concert that’ll feature Ray, Juliette and – in a big, cowboy-hatted middle finger to Jeff – Luke. Hopes are high again until Ms. Barnes arrives and announces that she wants out of her H65 contract. A confused Rayna, brushing away the reasoning that she’s “not big enough to service an artist” like Juliette, informs the younger woman that she is decidedly not fired. “You don’t get this now, but you are seriously ruining my life!” Juliette yells as she departs. Upstairs, Maddie thinks, “Hey, that’s my line!”

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IN THE TOILET | Deacon holds a benefit concert for a halfway house that helped him get and stay sober, and Rayna – sitting next to Luke in the audience – seems touched by Deke’s heartfelt speech about how great his life is now. It seems like everyone is there for the show… except Juliette, who misses Avery dedicating to her “One Light Shining,” the song he was writing earlier. Oh wait! As the ZAG band (Zoey, Avery, Gunnar of course) performs it, Ju stumbles around backstage, far too drunk for the heels she’s sporting. “He wrote it for meeeeee!” she protests as Deacon grabs her and squires her away before anyone can capture the soused mess and post it on YouTube.

Rayna, who watches the entire thing happen from her seat, beelines it to Juliette’s place after the show. What the heck is wrong with the younger woman, Ray wonders? “I schhhlepttt with Jeff Fordham,” Juliette slurs (heh) before zigzagging down the hallway to offer a sacrifice to the porcelain god. Rayna is a good Doo-Bee, holding Ju’s hair (there is a lot of it) and listening as the terminal screw-up cries and laments that she doesn’t deserve to be forgiven. “C’mon now, everybody deserves to be forgiven. Not Jeff, Jeff Doesn’t. But everyone else does,” Rayna replies.

This scene is Nashville at its best: It’s funny and touching, it advances the story and it has its two amazingly talented leads do something other than roll their eyes at each other. Rayna’s pep talk to her labelmate is sweet without making it seem like everything will be fine, and Juliette taken down a peg (aka puking on her own hair) is something I’ll never tire of seeing. Nice work, ladies.

So Juliette gets cleaned up and prepares to come clean to Avery… except Gunnar and Zoey already told him. “Tell me it isn’t true,” he says as he arrives at her place to find her red-eyed. “It meant nothing,” she replies, which isn’t exactly what he asked for, Ju. Her repeated cries that “it meant nothing” just make everything worse. “Does it ever mean anything with you?” he asks. “To you, love is 50,000 fans worshipping you every night.” Jonathan Jackson shuts down the scene (in a good way) as he leaves, informing his sobbing girlfriend, “You have no idea how much I love you. That’s something I’ll have to get over.”

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VERY PUBLIC DISPLAY OF AFFECTION | At the Highway 65 concert the next day, Juliette shows up in Rayna’s dressing room with a really lovely sidebraid and the determination to play the show even though her heart is crushed. “I’m gonna have your back like you had mine,” she says. Aww.

Jeff swings by to gloat, but wait one sec there, oh Turtleish one. Juliette divulges that Avery now knows all, making his blackmail moot – “Thanks for the worst minute-and-a-half of my life” (ha!) – and Rayna has gotten her pal Sam Boone to give away 250,000 downloads of her album instead of Will’s, guaranteeing a huge launch. Not sure what I love more: the ladies’ high five, or Rayna’s face as Jeff walks out the door.

Now all that’s left is to play the show, and I’m sure nothing eventful will happen there – wait a tick, what’s Luke doing? After he and Rayna perform “Ball and Chain” to close the concert, Mr. Wheeler announces to the crowd that he truly loves his lady and wants to be her ball and chain. Any points he loses for the cheesiness of that proposal, by the way, are more than made up for by the size of the ring; I bet they can see that rock from the cheap seats. Cut to Teddy, Maddie and Deacon looking like someone fluffed their neck feathers (nailed it!) as Rayna happily says yes.

Here’s my one small beef with the finale: After everything she’s been through in the past few years, and given that Rayna seems to love Luke but also be really okay with him being away for long periods of time, doesn’t her breezy acceptance of his proposal in front of 70,000 fans seem a little too easy? (If I’m wrong, yell at me in the comments.)

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE | Avery later returns to Juliette’s in a less angry, though no more forgiving, mood. “See, my problem is that I believe you when you say you love me,” he says, which starts me them both crying. Juliette once more takes us on a sad traipse through her terrible upbringing, calling herself “trailer trash covered in rhinestones” and highlighting her tendency for self-sabotage. “I know I need help,” she whispers. “But please don’t make me be alone again.” But are they broken up? Together? We’ll have to wait for next season to find out.

Meanwhile, Deacon has made his way to Rayna’s, where he’s aware that something’s changed: “Me. I know how to love you now.” While the redhead looks completely kerfuffled and Rayna-Deacon ‘shippers start doing victory laps around their living rooms, he moves in close and lays a hand alongside her cheek. “You and me, right? That’s how it’s supposed to be,” he says, all low and sultry-like, before moving in for a kiss that she resists for .00000003 nanoseconds before returning with gusto.

He presses a ring into her palm – the same one he forgot-proposed with during a bender all those years ago – and tells her “Don’t answer me now. This is yours. I never should’ve taken it back.” Deacon Claybourne has failed at a lot of things, ladies and gentlemen, but making a striking exit definitely isn’t one of them.

LAYLA LEARNS | While all of this is going on, Will is in New York to promote his new album. Everything’s coming along well – he even FaceTimes with hot trainer Tony about their upcoming “private session” – but Mr. Lexington is thrown into a tailspin when Jeff calls to tell him about the Sam Boon debacle. Without those guaranteed downloads, the album could very well flop, a reality that sends him in a panic to Gunnar’s new place. Will is crying, shaken up and a complete mess as he laments that everything he’s done will mean nothing if he loses his record deal.

I’m going to say something I rarely say, so pay attention: Gunnar is a calm voice of reason and does the exact right thing as he draws his pal extremely close (kiss! kidding.) and says, “You’re livin’ a lie, and I am the only person you can be yourself with. That’s not enough.” So Will returns home, where he drags Layla into the bedroom and comes apart in spectacular fashion as he confesses that he’s gay.

Nice job, once again, by Chris Carmack, who really looks as though he’s in physical pain as he clings to Will’s aghast wife. And if the scene isn’t troubling enough, the camera pans up to show us a (very poorly concealed) hidden camera in the bedroom’s clock, and it’s recording. Those crafty reality-show producers!

Now it’s your turn. Log your vote for what choice Rayna should make, then grade the episode via the poll below and back up your selection 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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  1. Amber says:

    Rayna gets two proposals, obvious who she should pick. Everyone wanted to cry when Luke proposed, and not happy tears lol

  2. Kiks says:

    What a difference a year makes! Great finale for Nashville. An enjoyable hour and so glad it was renewed

  3. Kristen says:

    Now that is a season finale!!! Wow! Rayna, we ALL know who you should choose! Deacon!!! Those last 5 minutes took my breath away!!

  4. steven says:

    And I thought that Will decided he wasn’t gay anymore.

  5. Diane says:

    Deacon! That other dude needs to go. Hoping that Avery gives Juliette another chance. What a beautiful scene between those too. I actually like Scarlett when she is with Gunnar. Poor Will.

  6. Amy says:

    “but wait one sec there, oh Turtleish one.” made me LOL! Love your recaps Kim.
    Got just a few things to say right now:

    Freakin’ Deacon!!! <3 Yes!! Charles Esten…have not loved a tv actor or character this much in a long time. He does more with a flick of his eyes than most actors do in a whole scene.
    Best Nashville Finale. Feels like maybe Nashville's hitting its stride? Now if only Season 3 doesn't have as many breaks I'll be a happy camper. …it's just so many months away. :(
    Anyway~Loved it!

    • Emgee says:

      ABC should seriously do a split season that they are doing with so many other shows. I think part of its numbers problems stem from people never being sure if new episode is on.

      I think DVR numbers help the show, but you’re right, ABC needs to do less breaks between new episodes.

  7. Amy says:

    ps. bah-bye Luke…sorry dude, but it’s ova.

  8. Jill says:

    I don’t think I breathed during that last scene. Chip Esten did such a wonderful job! Loved how Rayna kept trying to kiss him after he pulled away. The Juliette/Avery stuff broke my heart, but it seems hopeful that he’ll stick with her. This year’s finale seemed much more down to Earth and realistic than last years craziness. So much better.

  9. sladewilson says:

    For the record, this was a billion percent better a season finale than last year. Last year was pure bad soap opera claptrap. This was a far more adult cliffhangers with the right amount of drama and some damn fine acting all around… BTW – I really want the acoustic version of Gunnar’s song to Scarlett – beautiful haunting song…

  10. Emgee says:

    GREAT finale! Can’t wait for next fall!

  11. ChrisGa says:

    Great finale, far better than the train wre…..I mean, car wreck of last year’s. Everything was pretty note-perfect although I have to say I’m tiring of Maddie and her little temper tantrums; I get she’s a teen, but she’s become increasingly unappealing to me as the season wore on and this episode didn’t change my opinion.

    • Amy in KC says:

      Yeah, I used to love seeing the sisters on screen, but Maddie has been a complete brat this season. I understand her emotions, but expecting her mom to sign her to her label when she’s still in high school? When Rayna already told her (months and months ago) that she was too young? And whining to Teddy about it is not going to help your case, Maddie. I know she is young, but I had more sense than that when I was a teenager.

      I’m in the minority when I actually like Teddy sometimes—I think he is a good father, for one—but I didn’t like that look of annoyance when Daphne asked for music lessons. Just because he’s been hurt by some musicians in his life doesn’t mean music is bad! Maybe she could something more traditional like piano as a compromise. Getting off my soap box now…

      • Jo Jo Ma says:

        I don’t think it’s annoyance…I think it is fear that his daughters are slipping away from him. Maddie is so gung ho about Deacon, lighting up when he’s around and being a complete brat with Teddy ALL the time. Daphne is biologically his, and he feels that he’s going to lose her to music too. I actually really do like Teddy when he’s not being an ass hat.

        • Amy says:

          I agree with both you guys; I may have sometimes not liked some of Teddy’s actions, but never hated him as some do here. I agree with you, JoJo…I felt his eye-roll…which seemed just kind of light-hearted exasperation, (understandable) was for the reasons you gave. Sometimes I see his side and feel for him too.

          • Love Me Some Deacon! says:

            Teddy has been pretty good the last half of this season. Once he stopped being such a jerk to Rayna, and after Peggy and Lamar were both gone. Now he’s just a guy trying to be a dad to a brat and a cutie-pie. The actor who plays him is really coming into his character now, and it was great to see him just light up like he did last week when he was telling Deacon about the first time he saw Maddie. Nice. Makes you want something nice to happen to him now, too! Until then though – let’s just leave him in the background!!

      • Annie says:

        Teddy’s a good dad, and he is in the difficult position of his family moving on without him. But he’s not a saint/victim. He willfully screwed Deacon’s girlfriend when he had the chance and in the beginning – he knew what he was getting in to with Rayna, and Deacon, and Maddie. It is all hard and challenging but like Rayna said to Juliette, this is how it is to be a big girl/boy (grown-up) Teddy was the stand-in all along, which is why he’s so insanely jealous. He’s known it all along but had Rayna there to tell him no, that wasn’t it at all. But those days are gone. Seems like every lie and cover-up has been blown and exposed this season, up to and including Will’s nature (gay is gay, not a choice, like being straight) and thank goodness for Gunner’s, “that’s not enough.” Avery, Gunner, Scarlet, Juliette, Rayna, Deacon – they’ve all been screwed over and screwed up their careers in a combination of degrees and they are all still taking charge of their music, owning up, and moving on – refreshing to see in a TV show or anywhere these days. Nashville – making being a grown up look appealing – love that. Ray has got to pick Deacon with her head since every other aspect of her (body, emotions, memories, artist, instinct) already did a long time ago. Scarlet and Gunnar are Ray and Deacon 20 years ago… symmetry. Zoe’s nice and all but she is ready for the party/fun of a career, she’s not ready to settle down and besides, Gunnar stopped trying to “get over” Scarlet, thank goodness, so he and Zoe can part amicable and he and Scarlet can get back on track. They both need family and to settle down, and each other. And lil’miss thang is finally growing up into a real, full person. She’s already a winner, therefore, and Avery is no fool, he’ll see that. I have never seen it in any of the shows but there is something devious about Luke, like he is in some shady deal with Jeff, or something – he just keeps schmoozing Rayna – he’s hiding something. And – he’s not Deacon. Bye Luke. Great recap – thanks. Can not wait till next season.

        • Dorothy says:

          I agree with you there is something shady about Luke I never trusted him with Rayna and he is very jealous about Rayna and Deacons relationship .Rayna better make the right choose 😉😉💋Deacon they just belong together😉

  12. Amy says:

    …is On Demand up yet?! I swear I could sit through it again right now.

  13. Emgee says:

    So, side note…Season 1 used Hank Williams song titles as episode titles, Season 2 used Patsy Cline song titles. Season 3 should most definitely use George Strait song titles.

    • MA says:

      I think season two just used old song titles. “Your Girl Girl’s Gonna Go Bad” is a Tammy Wynette song, and “On the Other Hand” is Randy Travis, I believe.

      • Emgee says:

        Hmm…thanks for correcting me….a lot of them seemed to be Patsy Cline songs, at least for a while.
        Still, they should use George Strait song titles for Season 3 :)

  14. mg714 says:

    Maybe I am remembering wrong but didn’t Avery cheat on Scarlet in season 1? Not that it means it makes everything ok about Juliette cheating on him but he especially should realize that people make bad mistakes but can change for the better.

    • Laura says:

      Yes, with that manager lady, right?

      • Amber says:

        Not 100% but I don’t think he did. I think he almost did or he thought about it. She may have kissed him? But I do remember Scarlett finding out that the woman propositioned him and then she broke up with him and then he started seeing the manager. I may be wrong though.

        I hope he can forgive her. The girl needs therapy, with all of her problems. It would be nice if he would stand by her if she will try to get emotional help

        • Amy in KC says:

          Yeah, as much as I love him this season, Avery was a complete @$$ last season, and he needs to recognize that and give Juliette another chance. The end of the finale left me hopeful for the two of them. I agree she needs therapy—she admitted that herself!—and I think Avery respected her for saying that. They are good for each other…they need to stick together. Please, Nashville! I’m tired of all the bed-hopping.

        • sg says:

          You’re right about this. I even went back and double checked. He was going to have sex with the manager so she would help his career, but than couldn’t go thought with it. He went home and told Scarlett about it. She was so mad at him for even thinking about doing it that she broke up with him and moved out. After she left, he went back to the manager and slept with her.

          Even though that tonight they didn’t show the whole scene or conversation between Avery and Scarlett I like to think she reminded him what a jerk he was last season and how so many people forgave him or at least gave him a second chance. And it’s because of that, that he went back to Juliette to talk to her.

      • Jess says:

        Yes, he was 100% definitely having sex with the woman he later tells Juliette was sort of his sugar mama!

  15. Grace says:

    Amazing…I love this show. So glad it’s coming back a 3rd season.

  16. mg714 says:

    Also no offense to Zoe but we all know that endgame is Gunnar/Scarlett. The show is at another level whenever they are together.

    • SL says:

      Totally agree! Not a big Zoe fan, except when she’s singing.

      • Amy in KC says:

        Agree with both of you! She is a good singer, but nothing I can’t live without. The scene between Gunnar and Scarlett last night is the Nashville I know and love from season 1.

    • Amy says:

      Totally agree on that. I think this may happen next year… Scar lost her way after they broke up and “fame & fortune” the traditional route wasn’t for her…but the road back to her musical magic with Gunnar, just may help her find her true lane with her artistry…maybe just a musical collaboration, maybe more…..

  17. Adam Lenhardt says:

    Lots to love here, but my favorite was finally getting to see Juliette unguarded around Rayna. Their dynamic in this episode was terrific. And I love that Juliette’s finally starting to take responsibility for her failings instead of lashing out and blaming the world.

  18. Alicia says:

    I was completely breathless through that last Rayna/Deacon scene. Please say good-bye to Luke! Connie & Hayden were spectacular in their scenes with each other & others. That was some fine acting tonight. I know you’re not a Scarlett fan, Kim, but she & Gunnar singing together is perfection. Hauntingly beautiful as always.

  19. Laura says:

    Seriously awesome episode! Kim, I love these recaps.
    Where did Deacon get that ring? I vaguely remember thinking he threw it away. But clearly not!

    • Saabgirlatx says:

      This-but also it looked like a wedding band…not an engagement ring. And…why was Rayna home alone after getting engaged??????

      Great finale though. Stressed about wills fallout. He should not have confessed to whatshername until after the taping was over!

      Rooting for a Gunnar / Scarlett reconciliation. Love those two together!

    • MA says:

      He totally threw it away! He tossed it into the memorial pile at the crash site. I guess we’re supposed to assume he went back and fished it out?? Consistency isn’t this show’s strong suit.

    • Amy says:

      So glad you guys mentioned that; I came back here to pose the same question. Yes…he totally threw it in the memorial pile. I too thought to myself, were we just supposed to assume he went back and fished it out?….I agree with MA..consistency is not this show’s strong suit!

      • l0islane says:

        Even more confusingly Deacon proposed to Rayna with that ring in the flashbacks and then when she discovered he was drunk she threw it back at him, next thing we know she is giving it back to him at the crash site (how did she get it back?!), then Deacon throws it away and now in this episode he’s got it back again! That ring has magical powers!!

  20. L. Sebastian says:

    Hayden Panettiere absolutely broke my heart tonight with that monologue at the end. She is a super talented actor- it sucks that since the show has been written off by critics as a glorified soap opera, she won’t get recognized for it.
    I am so nervous about the Will s/l…really hoping for something positive for that character next season.
    Rayna and Deacon were always gonna be endgame, so I say get together already and stay together! I do like Will Chase though, so hopefully we’ll still see some of him, not to mention hear that voice! *swoon*

    • L. Sebastian says:

      Oh! and how could I forget! This show is at it’s best when the two leads are interacting in some way, and the scenes between Britton and Panettiere were flawless as usual!

    • Wendy Grant says:

      It was interesting that Will kept bringing up that he left Rayna’s label after he had agreed to go with her and instead went with Jeff. Rayna said Highway 65 is where artists should come to be their true selves, so it would make sense for Will to end up there.

    • Meredith says:

      I’m keeping my fingers crossed that since she’s been nominated for a Golden Globe the last couple years they’ll continue to support her. It’s Charles Esten I wish would get recognized :(

  21. Wendy Grant says:

    I think Rayna is going to break the engagement with Luke and there might be backlash for her with that. I think Jeff is going to use the broken engagement to push Luke to work with him to best Highway 65. I’m sure there will be new cast added because if it’s a Highway 65 vs Edgehill, there will need to be Edgehill artists. I think Edgehill will drop Will and he will end up at Highway 65. I think Skarlett and Gunner will revive their writing partnership and sign to Highway 65 as writers.

    I read an interview with Chip Esten who said he wants the Deacon/ Maddie relationship to change to one of true parenting, which means he’ll be telling Maddie no instead of spoiling her and that’s going to be drama.

    • EJ386 says:

      Although I kind of like the idea of it being Edgehill vs Highway 65 I think it would be weird to have all the artist we know and love [so no Luke and Wills beard] would be on H65’s side and that only Luke, Wills beard and the evil manager, with a bunch of new artists on Edgehills side. It would be to much only rooting for one side and hating the other.

      • Jo Jo Ma says:

        I really don’t need another season of Edgehill vs Highway 65. It would be nice to see Rayna scouting for new artists to sign to her label. I’ve seen enough of Jeff Fordham for a lifetime. Next season should focus on – Luke and Rayna’s wedding ;) A gay country star and the backlash of his confession and more collaboration/song writing from any of the characters.

        • EJ386 says:

          Luke and Rayna I could do without, Wills storyline however seems to have a lot of potential. Hope this is the start of the end of his whining wife on the show…

        • Willowan says:

          If Season 3 focuses on Luke and Rayna’s wedding, who will be watching? Not many!

  22. Claire says:

    This was all kinds of perfection….Rayna & Deacon….Rayna & Juliette….Juliette. Well done show..well done!

  23. Diz says:

    Awesome, so glad it was renewed!

  24. abz says:

    This show is truly great when they put Rayna and Juliette. I definitely want to see more of that and please more evolution for Juliette and less regression.
    Poor WIll, I hope the guy has something positive in his life soon and they should definitely give him more screen time as his story is one of the more interesting on the show compared to some other characters. If the truth comes out, I definitely think Edgehill will let him go. I don’t know if I see him back at Highway 65 after the whole backstabbing Rayna thing by leaving, but if Rayna is making more “business” decisions like she did in this episode then maybe she’ll let him come back.
    Also, they need to rethink what they’re doing with Maddie. I know she’s been entering the typical annoying teenager phase and yes a lot has happened to her, but I’m really kind of over it. Sick of seeing her treat Teddy like dirt. Sick of her whining and pouting and her woe-is-me attitude. Writers, it’s not entertaining to watch. I miss the two girls that enjoyed seeing when they sang “Ho Hey” so beautifully.
    And please get rid of the Will Chase character. I don’t care if he’s a series regular now, it was a stupid decision. And I don’t dislike him because I want Rayna with Deacon, I just don’t think he’s that great of a character and I’m seriously over TV love triangles.

  25. forwarddad says:

    I love Luke and I don’t think it will be that cut and dry with Rayna and Deacon. They’re the end game, they won’t be together until the Series Finale.

    • Willowan says:

      We all have our opinions, as we should, but I honestly can’t see what there is about Luke, to Love?

      The character has been written with no depth; he seems all about flash and show. I get the feeling that Rayna is more a prize to win, than a Woman he truly knows and understands, and Loves.

      His jealousy and insecurity, regarding Deacon, his constant snide remarks and condescending put downs towards Deacon, so annoying.

      Deacon is far from perfect. He’s worked so hard and come so far, he loves so deeply and has such a great heart. He knows Rayna as no one else ever will. Yet his demons are something he’s going to fight every day of his life.

      It all makes, or should make, for such a compelling story. I hope the Writers are brave enough to tell it, in Season 3.

      • Hear, hear! Couldn’t put it better myself!

      • MA says:

        Amen to that, and Luke brings Rayna down to his shallow level; she doesn’t bring him up. I’m really disappointed in Rayna, actually. She’s been my favorite character from the start but has become incredibly self-absorbed this season. I hope that’s going to change next season, but am not counting on it.

      • Irene ChH says:

        I agree. Luke does come off as superficial and Deacon is so much more sincere. The Deacon and Rayna love is so deep rooted that despite all these side distractions, they will prevail. Will Rayna be convinced enough to give up Luke for Deacon even though she knows deep down its
        Deacon she loves? As Will Chase has been added as a regular, it will be interesting how the love triangle will play out in season 3.

    • Carla Krae says:

      I like Luke, too. He’s been good for Rayna while she’s rebuilt herself this year.

    • Nance says:

      I too love Luke. I think he’s a guy who has constantly stuck his neck out, even pissing off his label to show Rayna he loves her. He’s the guy who helped her get over a lot of the after crash drama at the beginning of the season. As much as I like deacons character on the show, I think it’s way too soon for Rayna to even entertain getting back with him. This is a man she has a very messy history with and who almost got her killed a year ago! Do people forget that she ended up in a coma because of their volatile argument and him getting drunk? Poor Luke, I guess nice guys do finish last….

      • Love Me Some Deacon! says:

        Do people forget that Rayna could have refused to continue the argument when she was driving? She has a little responsibility in that accident too. True – it all happened because of Deacon’s drinking, but it wasn’t his “fault” – that’s why they’re called accidents.

        • emn says:

          Maybe it’s because I only saw the last two eps of the first season and all of the second season but – and I say this as I duck for cover – I really don’t see what the big deal is about Deacon. Guess I would have to have watched the entirety of the first season to be on board with the epic-ness of the love between him and Rayna…

          I know he and Rayna are end-game and I don’t dislike the guy but honest to God he just seems like a lot of work. Truth is, I really don’t have a horse in the race between Luke and Deacon. Rayna could end up with either one and I’d be okay. But I don’t dislike Luke’s character. I know there’s a school of thought out there that he’s up to no good behind the scenes, but I think that’s mostly supposition from fans who see him as an impediment to the Deacon/Rayna romance. But to give him his due, Luke seems to genuinely love Rayna, cares about her kids, is a good father to his own, is confident and successful in his own right.

          I think what I like about the Luke/Rayna relationship is that they face each other on an equal footing.

          The Deacon/Rayna relationship seems so rooted in the melodrama of their past. There is a certain appeal to Luke’s confidence that I just don’t get from Deacon who seems more desperate in a “love me, need me, your love will save me” kind of way.

          Just please…. Avery/Juliette. That’s MY end game. :)

          • Love Me Some Deacon! says:

            “duck fo rcover”…..hahaha! Good one! In an early episode of season 1 there was a duet by Rayna and Deacon at the Bluebird – it was all eyes and realization that they were definitely still in love with each other. Sigh. That’s where the fans connection with Deacon began. Before that, you could see he was awesome and still cared and all of that, but Juliette was boinking him on the side and so you didn’t really know how his character was overall.

          • MA says:

            Deacon has been a lot of work, that’s true, but I do think he’s worth the effort. I don’t think it’s so much desperation (though there has been plenty of that) as just a really solid and deep connection that binds them. If you watch the whole first season, you’ll see it. This season they were on the outs almost the entire time, so they didn’t interact like that very much. But in the first season, they really are best friends and confidants…and lovers, but not for very long. ;)

          • cjinsd says:

            The first five episodes of Nashville S1 are available for free on Hulu. You should check them out. Plus, you’ll see the awesome beginning of Scarlett and Gunnar

          • D says:

            “But I don’t dislike Luke’s character. I know there’s a school of thought out there that he’s up to no good behind the scenes, but I think that’s mostly supposition from fans who see him as an impediment to the Deacon/Rayna romance. But to give him his due, Luke seems to genuinely love Rayna, cares about her kids, is a good father to his own, is confident and successful in his own right.” This. This describes exactly how I feel about Luke. Yes, I was a Rayna/Deacon shipper, and yes I am happy that Deacon has been so great with Maddie over the course of the season. But I think that Rayna was pretty emotionally broken after the events of last season’s finale, along with her difficult relationships with Tandy and Lamar. Luke has been good for Rayna this season. He’s helped her heal. I just don’t think that Rayna’s ready to get back with Deacon.
            Also, on a side note, I am not bothered with Will Chase being promoted to a series regular, as long as we get to hear more of that voice! He plays being a country megastar very well.

  26. Lea says:

    DEACON!!!! No question about that.

    Get rid of Luke writers PLEASE.

  27. cordelia says:

    Loved it! Rayna-Juliette, Juliette-Deacon and Rayna-Deacon are my favorite pairings and we didn’t see them as often as i would like this season. this finale though we got some good stuff in all three pairings.

    Luke’s proposal, bleh! but what else was rayna to answer on stage? She didn’t actually say ‘yes’ right? *wishful thinking*

    Also love the difference between Jeff and Bucky. Bucky can hand out good news over the telephone but says he comes in person for bad news. Jeff does exactly the opposite.

  28. Andrew Hass says:

    I thought it was a great season finale for Nashville.All the cliffhangers were about relationships and emotionally based.Now next season might be about how everyone picks up the pieces and tries to move on from what happened.I think Rayna and Luke will stay engaged but something happens at their wedding which i’m sure will happen sometime next season.As for Will that recording of him admitting that he’s gay to his wife will probably be leaked and it could be interesting to see who supports Will and who doesn’t.

    • Jill says:

      I can’t imagine Rayna staying engaged to Luke after what Deacon said to her about how he’ll never get over her, she’d just be living in denial for another season, not to mention breaking Deacon’s heart would put a HUGE strain on their relationship and interactions with Maddie. I can’t imagine how they would play that next season without the show being sad and depressing.

  29. João says:

    I really missed a Scarlet/Gunner moment like in this episode! The show is amazing, but when those two sing together… Pure magic happens!!

  30. Shira says:

    Now that’s how it’s done!!! Great finale!! Everyone brought their A game in this episode. loved how they focused on the core storylines and core cast. After sending each character into individual journey it was beautiful to watch the original pairing reconnect but in a different way..because each one of them is different. Rayna and Juliette, Scarlett and Gunner, Scarlett and Avery and of course Rayna and Deacon.

    Juliette and Avery broke my heart. I’m not a huge Javery shipper but it was just so sad.
    Rayna kicked ass. Loved everything about her in this episode.

    It’s such a complicated character that we sometimes take it for granted but in this episode I was at awe of Connie Britton. The way she moved from deeply emotional scenes to comic ones. How she’s with each character and how she’s a little different in every single hat she wears and how she’s so truthful in all of them. The shift from the quite intimate moment before the concert when she said “Thank you for letting me live” ( yes, I cried) to her being the queen of country Rayna Jaymes on stage was magnificent. That’s what Nashville is all about. Hope she’ll get the recognition she deserves for it.

    And last thing. The last scene, Rayna and Deacon.In that scene Rayna wears the same shirt from the bridge scene in the pilot and Rayna and Deacon come full circle. This time she’s still the same, love him but put a wall between them so she won’t get hurt but he’s different. This time he’s her equal. Hope she choose him, hope the show pick up exactly from this spot and won’t make a time jump so we see her grapple with the decision and also let Rayna and Deacon slowly re- build their relationship. Go on a sate, have a family dinner, ground Maddie, fight like grown ups, perform together again…anything.

  31. GS says:

    This finale was awesome! I loved the Rayna/Juliette scenes! Really hope Juliette and Avery aren’t done b/c they are hands down my favorite couple. Luke should have died in Afghanistan b/c he and Rayna are negatve on the chemistry scale. She and Deacon are meant to be period. I’m really over Maddie being a whiny brat and couldn’t care less if Scarlett goes or stays. I’m in the minority but I love Jeff and Oliver Hudson is HOT! Will coming out was kind of anti climactic to me but I know Layla and that show are going to put him through hell next season. Chris Carmack is really great at showing Will’s struggles. So glad it’s already renewed and all I have to worry about is when it will be back on!

  32. CoryRox says:

    Great finale! I absolutely loved the look on Layla’s face when Will told her he was gay and then hugged her. Priceless!

  33. rowan77 says:

    Great recap, but you’ve got a serious spelling mistake that pretty much changes the meaning of your sentence. When Rayna held Juliette’s hair she was being a Do-Bee (someone who does the right thing) not a “doobie” (a joint). LOL!

  34. Amy H says:

    FIrst of all, this is one of THE best episodes they’ve done. Great acting, great moving along of the plot, great music. Charles Esten, Chris Carmack, Hayden Panettiere, Jonathan Jackson and Connie Britton were all great. Juliette and Rayna scenes were perfect. And the ending was as well. It’s the perfect wiil she/won’t she ending for the season. Of course, I hope she will. I’d like to see Rayna and Deacon progress from here, and become a family with the kids.
    Lots to contemplate over the summer — Luke’s reaction (I’m counting on a yes from Rayna to Deacon), backlash from Will’s confession on the hidden camera, Juliette/Avery working things out, Edgehill/Highway 55 conflagration, maybe a rekindled Gunnar/Scarlett connection?

    As always, LOVE your recaps, Kimberly.,

  35. Just the most pefect finale! Deacon sure knows how to propose, something Luke apparently doesn’t! Just hope that Luke’s participation next season will be part of the Edgehill/Highway 64 battle, not as part of a love triangle.

  36. Love Me Some Deacon! says:

    Seriously – how could a reality show actually put a camera in someone’s bedroom? Especially when they specifically said not in the bedroom? That rips. Poor Will. And Layla – in way over her head!

  37. Romi says:

    Loved the Rayna/Juliette scenes and the Scarlett/Avery (drunk) scene. Love Rayna/Deacon but Will Chase is a favorite and I hope his role next year is more interesting. I hope there is more of an emphasis on full song performances next year.

  38. MA says:

    I didn’t hate this, but I didn’t love it either. It was probably one of the strongest episodes of the season, but that’s not saying much. I’m really starting to think Deacon is too good for Rayna, and if it wouldn’t make him so sad, I’d say he should dump her superficial, Luke-loving self and find someone cool who actually acts like she wants him.

  39. Miriko says:

    I know I’m in the minority here, but I think that if Rayna went straight to Deacon, she would loose a lot of fan support and play into every man in this show’s paranoia that she is unable to love anyone but Deacon. I think Luke has been good to her, has supported her, and really cared for her. It would be sad if the show would just throw all that away to quickly sink back into the Rayna-Deacon thing. Also, I know that due to the nature of the show, if Rayna does choose Deacon too soon, they will need to put more obstacles and issues in their way. I look forward to those two getting together, but I wish it wasn’t at the detriment of so many other characters. What they should do is turn Luke a bit bad, that way no one will feel for him when Rayna dumps him for Deacon:)

  40. amy says:

    I think that it was said during the Liam stuff that Scarlett met Avery at Ole Miss and dropped out of school to follow him to Nashville. Also did anyone actually HEAR Rayna say yes? He kindof just shoved the ring on her finger and it was implied. She definitely was not shouting yes from the rooftops.

  41. Gina says:

    Am I the only one who cannot stand Scarlett?! I desperately wanted her to leave. She is too wet even though she does sing beautifully. I dread her and Gunnar getting back together. Otherwise, awesome finale!

  42. Ashley says:

    Loved the season finale! Hope that in the end Rayna and Deacon get together but I hope it’s not rushed.. One thing that been bugging me though since Lamar’s death is -where’s the will?? Rayna needs money for highway 65, her dad had tons of it/was cleared of charges (thus no freeze on accts) yet nothing ever came of it… Just curious about it. Could definitely help her and her label.

  43. Janice Cole says:

    We had bad weather in Ga and I did not see the last episode. Will be shown again anytime?

  44. Tracy says:

    I agree about Lamar’s money. The way things unfolded, Lamar’s money is clean. It was discussed early on in the show that all that money and power was to be passed down to Rayna’s sister. When will this happen?

  45. spiritualized67 says:

    What a great series – and an astonishingly good season two finale! And this is coming from a guy who is not a big country music fan. Although not my preferred genre, the music is surprisingly well written – and the character development even better.

    What I love about Nashville is the fact that it’s all about redemption. Just when you start to dislike a character, they do something to change your mind.

    This past season, Scarlett became a little needy – although she’s becoming more likeable as she regains back some of her confidence. Although I initially liked her voice, I became less of a fan as the show went on. Interestingly enough after viewing the singing special episode, it become readily apparent that she has one of the best live voices of the entire acting ensemble – so I think song choice has a lot to do with it (note to producers).

    As for Deacon – what’s there not to like about this guy. He’s organic and real – and has a strength and vulnerability that is appealing. You really get the sense that he’s a changed man who is looking to undue past wrongs – and his attitude towards Maddie is simply endearing.

    As for Maddie – she’s very much the typical “entitled” teenager, so I think the writers are right on the mark with her. She’s also a very talented singer and cute as a button when singing with her kid sister, so I’d like to see more of them. Nice touch on including them in the solider stadium performance.

    When it comes to Luke, I am a fan and think he’s a standup guy. If it weren’t for Deacon being so darn likeable (and the thought of Rayna and Deacon rekindling the past romance), I think we’d all be fine with Rayna’s decision to hitch up with him. Sure he has his moments, but he’s a decent guy and pretty down to earth given his stature. I can’t understand why people don’t like him, other than the fact that it makes Deacon and Maddie sad.

    OK, I’m going to get some dirty looks from this one, but I’m not a Teddy fan at all. Actually out of all the characters (including Jeff Fordham, whom we love to hate), Teddy is sort of a boring and pompous ass to be honest. I just find him highly annoying – sorry. Sort of reminds me of the high school principal that you hated.

    Let’s talk about Juliette for a second. She is the epitome of redemption. I think many of us initially found her to be narcissistic and selfish – and we didn’t like this at all. She was the female version of Jeff Fordham in many ways. But as her character has developed (and as she has gone through many trials and tribulations – from losing her mother to almost losing her career), we have all learned to “never judge a book by its cover,” and Juliette is turning out to be a great person indeed (Hayden, you rock as an actress). She has many issues and makes many mistakes, but underneath all the money and fame, she just wants what we all want, which is love and acceptance. I’m so digging her vulnerability as she blossoms into the person she was really meant to be. It’s also delightful to see Rayna warming up to her. As for Avery, make no mistake – he will welcome her back as he sees part of himself in her – and they were meant for each other. He’ll be looking over his shoulder more, but can’t live without her. Much like Juliette, Avery has become much more interesting and soulful as the season has progressed.

    Let’s talk about Will. What an absolutely wonderful character and storyline (and the acting is simply superb). I hate to say this, but I think he’ll end up in front of a train for real next season. I hope the writers don’t ax him (because he’s fantastic), but I just don’t see this storyline ending well for Will. The look on Layla’s face said it all. As much as we like people being successful, we like to see people fail. I don’t want to see Will get hurt, but it’s inevitable.

    So there you have it kids. One of the best shows on TV – masterfully written and acted on so many levels. Can’t wait to see what happens in season three.

    • Izzie B says:

      What a nice write up you gave this show! Way to keep it positive – thanks for sharing.

    • Willowan says:

      I an not a Luke fan, at all, I find the character all flash and show with no depth,and that out of nowhere, public proposal, and the tacky, 7carat ring is the perfect example!

      He seems all look at me, was talking about People magazine covering the Wedding,

      Rayna always seemed the opposite trying to keep her private life on the downlow.

      I get the feeling that Rayna is something of a prize to him. And he seesit as getting the best of Deacon, that is is so jealous andi insecure about.

      Not sure if it’s how the character has been written, or Will Chase’s portrayal or both, but I don’t feel chemistry in the relationship, either

  46. Dorothy says:

    I have to say this show is one of the best on TV . I have watched this episode about 5 times already and the ending scene with Chip Esten was so great he a is wonderful actor.Cant wait for season 3 and many more after.Go Nashville !!!! Deacon and Rayna!!!!always. Bye to Luke👋👋 Luke is not for Rayna !!

  47. Kate Morley says:

    I love Rayna and Deacon together, as well as Scarlett and Gunner.. but Juliette and Avery are SOOOOOOOO good together. They have both made mistakes throughout the past two seasons but they deserve to be happy! Hands down my favourite couple that has been on the show!!

  48. Robin Hansen says:

    I would totally take Deacon, but I don’t think he is the right choice for Rayna now. She seems to be happier with the easy-going, basically kind Luke, who gives her space to live as a grownup and makes her feel desired and cherished without crowding.

  49. Ethel Tatrault says:

    🌻😀🌻 Love the show it’s great look forward to it every Wednesday night enjoy the music and all the characters