Juliette’s Tour of Pain makes stops in Los Angeles, the curb outside Avery’s house and Rayna’s front stoop this week on Nashville, and by the end of the hour, at least one more person knows that there’s a little Barnes in her bread basket.
But if Ju’s the main event, heartbreak-ically speaking, pretty much every other character could audition to be her sad-sack opening act. Rayna and Luke argue about when to marry. Deacon tries to bang his pain away. A (still) closeted Will gives “feel the burn” a whole new meaning. Gunnar cries more than me watching that dead mom Google commercial, and Zoey is just kind of a jerk.
Let’s take a look at what happens in “I Can’t Get Over You to Save My Life.”
I STOP TO SEE A WEEPIN’ WILLOW, CRYIN’ ON HIS PILLOW | Let’s start with the only good thing that happens to Juliette in the entire episode: She nails her screen test for the Patsy Cline movie, proving to the director and producers that she has plenty of chemistry with Noah West, who’s been cast as Patsy’s husband. (Side note: Derek Hough didn’t have a lot to do this week; I’m interested to see whether the character will be used as more than set dressing for Ju’s Hollywood ride.) Noah’s clearly interested, but Juliette’s got bigger things to worry about.
Thing 1: She can’t stop throwing up. Thing 2: Glenn and Emily think she’s on drugs, and are worried enough to break into her house and rifle through her things to search for the pills. Thing 3: When she tries to tell Deacon about the turmoil in her life, he’s too messed up about Rayna to give her much advice aside from to tell Avery “everything — or you just spare the poor bastard a world of hurt and you set him free.” Thing 4: When she does finally muster up the courage to go to Avery’s house to tell him she’s carrying his greasy-haired spawn, she sees him drunkenly making out with a blonde in the front yard and aborts (too soon?) her mission.
So by the end of the episode, Juliette is installed on Rayna’s front porch like the saddest jack-o-lantern you’ve ever seen. For some reason, she’s wearing a Unibomber hoodie over the white suit-like outfit she had on the evening before. When Ray approaches, Juliette tearfully brandishes her ultrasound. There are very few times when people make faces that actually look like emoticons, but Rayna at that moment — I kid you not — resembles nothing so much as :|.
SAVE THE HATE | Oh, lighten up, Ray; Juliette’s trainwreck of impending motherhood makes your silly engagement woes seem positively rom-commy in comparison.
So what, you and Luke can’t seem to settle on a wedding date? So what, your couple nickname, “Ruke,” sounds less like catchy tabloid fare and more like what Juliette is doing for most of the hour? So what, a room full of people better suited to finding the right brand of hemorrhoid cream for Luke to endorse are now making major decisions about your romantic future? (Side note: Luke Wheeler’s Saddle Salve™: For when your tush is as ornery as a pit bull at a poodle party.) So what, you cover your unease at the way this engagement is proceeding by making a grand gesture — chartering a private jet and surprising Luke at his concert in L.A. — and deciding to combine your upcoming tours?
Most importantly: So what, your true love is so angry over your rejection that he hate-screws the newest and most annoying member of Luke’s band? (Though I did love Deacon telling Pam, “You’ve got to be the only woman in the world that doesn’t know I’m in love with Rayna Jaymes” moments before pulling her into his hotel room.)
BARNSTORMER | While all of this ridiculousness is playing out on the West Coast, the ZAG Band reunites for a gig at Barn-aroo (heh), a barn party in Nashville. Avery appears to be pickling himself from the inside out; he’s very drunk when the trio takes the stage, and he changes the words to a song he wrote about Juliette so she comes off like a cheating floozy.
They somehow make it through, though when Zoey sees Gunnar talking with an old friend from Texas, she gets all snippy and short with him. At home, she finally confesses that she’s jealous — and Gunnar admits that the woman, Kiley, is his first love and is “practically family.” And since Jason’s dead… Zoey apparently likes seeing Gunny cry even less than I do, because she pulls him close and tells him they’re cool.
But will she think that when she realizes that Kiley, who took off without a word 10 years before, ends the episode clasping Gunnar’s hands as they both weep for his deceased brother?
Also related to the barn party: Maddie attends, though Teddy thinks she’s at a chaperoned barbecue with a friend. And when Scarlett spots her drinking out of a red Solo cup and hanging around with a sketchy dude, she wraps one of her myriad braids around the teens’ neck and hauls her outta there. (Not really. But what was up with that ‘do, Scar?) In the car on the way home, Scarlett tells Maddie she won’t rat her out and that feeling out of place is something with which artists have to make peace.
WORKING IT OUT | “You started without me?” Will’s trainer asks, spying his sweaty, worked-up client going at it. Sadly, he’s talking about an angry Will furiously pumping iron. They aren’t hooking up — oh wait, now they totally are! Will does it to blow off steam; he’s under pressure from Layla to perform on his tour and from Jeff not to let her do so. What Mr. Lexington doesn’t know: Layla wants Jeff to make her album go gold, or she’s going to out Will to everyone.
Now it’s your turn. Did you love the shot of Juliette eating ice cream right out of the half-gallon as she walked into her house? Do you care that Teddy’s got no game when it comes to picking up women? (For future reference, Tedster, “Hey, you’ve never used pig’s blood for anything duplicitous, have you?” isn’t the smoothest come-on a girl can hear.) Will we maybe get an actual Sadie Stone storyline next week? And did Avery’s song of torment actually last until sunrise, like it seemed? Sound off in the comments!