Nashville Recap Season 5 Episode 6

Nashville Recap: Can I Get an Amen?

Need to catch up? Check out the previous Nashville recap here.

The Nashville Personality Refinement Program continues its very welcome work in this week’s episode. The latest graduate: Luke “Watch Out, Cake!” Wheeler.

Rayna’s former fiancé shows up in connection with yet another major business opportunity for which Zach so conveniently has the cash and interest. And while, yes, buying Wheelin’ Dealin’ Records and absorbing its artists and catalogue might be a good idea for the fledgling Highway 65, is climbing deeper and deeper into the very deep pockets of a very weird man really a good idea?

Elsewhere in the hour, Rayna and Deacon get a better security system and Juliette gets religion. Read on for the highlights of “A Little Bit Stronger.”

OOPS | An understandably unsettled Rayna and Deacon boost their home security, all the better to keep the guy with the letters — whose name is Carl Hockney, and who is the same guy who wanted a photo with Ray a few episodes back — away. They’ve got a restraining order, too; between the two measures, one of the burly security team dudes promises, “This man will not get to you.”

However, the guy probably should’ve added, “But he might get to Daphne.” Because that’s exactly what happens while Rayna’s younger daughter is on her school’s grounds, ‘tween-flirting with a classmate named Flynn. Hockney is hauled away for violating the restraining order. Rayna and Deacon are shaken. But Daphne’s like, “Teen crush trumps all! Daph out!” and goes back to class like nothing happened.

IT’S GETTING BETTER | Juliette’s physical therapy is clearly working, as evidenced by an in-home session with Allyson. Juliette’s overall mood is so much lighter and happier than we’ve seen in a while, and it’s a welcome change. She even giggles a little! Ju has made so much progress, in fact, that she ditches the wheelchair for crutches, an improvement Hallie notices when she comes over for a meal with the Barnes-Barkley family.

We learn that Hallie is a social worker whose clients are “families in crisis.” Juliette wonders why the other woman hasn’t attempted a recording career, given her golden pipes. But Hallie says she’s using her gift her own way, and invites Ju down to the community center later that week to see what she means. She also mentions Juliette coming to church. “I just don’t want to be a distraction,” Ju demurs. (And somewhere, Juliette’s former mother-in-law sniffs, “Sure, now she doesn’t want to be a distraction in church?!”) (Side note: The shot of Cadence in this scene is totally gratuitous, but I LOVE IT.)

GETTIN’ THE SPIRIT | So Juliette goes to Hallie’s church while Avery is playing his first gig in a while, and they both get something out of their respective experiences. Avery gets an offer from an agent, which appears to intrigue him. And Juliette just kinda feels better about life, breaking into a grin as she wholeheartedly joins in with “His Eye Is on the Sparrow” near the end of the service. (Side note: Ju,I don’t want to harsh your God buzz, but if you didn’t want to be a distraction, you could’ve shown up on time and sat near the back rather than walking down the entire aisle. Just sayin’.)

After Juliette catches a rousing community-center performance for kids by Hallie’s group, the Nashville Chocolate Drops — a play on the real-life Carolina Chocolate Drops, which are fronted by Hallie’s portrayer, Rhiannon Giddens— she and Rayna have a cup of coffee. Wait a minute… are these two hanging out on the regular now? And if so, why is the whole hour not just them sipping, gossiping and being the girlfriends I want them to be?

Anyway, Rayna floats the idea of Highway 65 buying Wheelin’ Dealin’, which would mean that Juliette would be a H65 artist once more. After they deal with the fact that Rayna’s no longer mad about Juliette’s massively public defection from the label not all that long ago, Juliette says she’s interested… and that she wants to make an album of gospel music and spirituals. You — and Juliette — can tell Rayna’s not jazzed about that, but Ju seems so happy and at peace with the world that even Big Red doesn’t put up much resistance.

At home, Emily comes into the room with a grave face and a tablet in her hands: The tabloids are making fun of Juliette for going to church. Em is all, “I think you should see this.” Honey, there have been SO MANY WORSE stories about your boss in those rags. Breathe a minute.

Naturally, the next time Juliette attends services, the paparazzi are waiting for her. But she just makes her way into the church with Avery at her side, sits down and feels good about herself for once. Hallelujah!

HEARTBREAK IN HINDSIGHT | So now all that’s left for Rayna and Zach is to actually, um, ask Luke if he’s selling his record label and whether he’d consider selling to them. Evidence that this show has broken me this season: When the Highway 65 bosses catch up to Luke on tour, I really like “Wide Open,” the song he’s singing on stage. (And Will Chase is, as usual, pretty rad.)

After the show, Luke admits that his heart isn’t in Wheelin’ Dealin’ since the whole IRS kerfuffle. Then he acknowledges that Rayna was right to call off their wedding, because they wouldn’t have been happy in the long run. “Now say that you’re sorry for all of your stupid big-game themed dressing-room décor!” I shout at my television, but to no avail. Ah well, two outta three ain’t bad. Luke adds that he trusts Rayna, and that he’d be happy to sell her his company.

While all of that is happening, Zach wanders backstage and winds up in Will’s dressing room, where the tech geek seems very into watching Mr. Lexington change his sweaty shirt. To be honest, dude has an 86-pack going on under there, and I’m pretty sure a human of any sexuality would have at least a passing curiosity about the sheer beauty of such a thing. But yes, given that awkward conversation at last week’s video shoot and this scene, it appears that Zach is kinda into the cowboy. But why does he have to be so creepy about it?

BUT WHERE’S TINO? | Maddie and Clay grow closer, but he pushes her away every once in a while, saying she’s scared of him and his situation. She vows that she’s not. Deacon and Rayna aren’t thrilled that he’s 24 and dating their 17-year-old daughter, but when Mads tries to accuse them of being racist, that nonsense gets shut down right quick. “Are you kiddin’ me right now?” Rayna says, her tone the verbal equivalent of taking off one’s earrings, and then delivers a great monologue about how times have changed in terms of loving who you want to love, but a 24-year-old with a 17-year-old is still kinda worrisome.

Later, with Deacon, Maddie delivers some lines that could’ve come right out of Angela Chase’s mouth. “People are like worlds, like whole worlds inside,” she says, lamenting that “I honestly don’t know what to say to [Clay] right now.” And now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go call my mom and apologize for being exactly this dramatic about ridiculously unimportant things from ages 12-20.

The point seems moot when Clay breaks up with Maddie via voicemail, but Mad isn’t having it. She tracks him down where he’s performing and reiterates that she wants to get to know the real him, and she wants him to know the real her. He kisses her. Looks like they’re back on!

CHANGE OF ART | You’re dying to know how The Exes video came out, aren’t you? When Scarlett watches a rough cut with Damien, she’s suddenly crying and talking like Jodie Foster lamenting that her space program hadn’t sent a poet up in the orb in Contact. “So… beautiful…,” that kind of thing. “I’m not sure I know what’s happening,” Damien says, and I’m glad he says it before I do. Turns out, Scarlett feels like the verbally abusive director captured Scar’s true essence on film, and she’s shocked. “You showed me what I look like in my own mind,” she says reverently. Blech. I know what they’re going for here, but I wish that she’d seen the footage, thought it looked good but NOT let him off the hook for being such a mean-spirited jerkface to her throughout the shoot.

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? 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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  1. Simon says:

    Another solid episode. I’m wondering if the inclusion of the transgender rehabilitation worker will playoff into a bigger storyline. Maybe Hallie will disapprove because of religious reasons resulting in Juliette to question going forward with the whole Church thing?
    p.s. If Will would just shave off those sideburns he’d be pretty perfect specimen of man, 86 pack indeed.

  2. Jakay says:

    I seriously hate Damien and I was so hoping Scarlett would take him down. Sexist, creepy, psycho, cliched… He’s a swine, he was awful and abusive to germ and I need somebody to make it clear he is much more of an arrogant creep than an artist or Mr ESP or whatever they want us to think he is.

  3. Bwhit says:

    Great episode but I really hope they are not going there with Scarlett and Damian…. I can’t take another Scarlett/Gunnar road block… I’ve had enough of those.

  4. pAloma says:

    Well, after last week’s recap I was asking for them to give something for Daphne to and this week they actually gave her some screen time that wasn’t two words or a shrug here or there in reaction to her sister. Even so, her scenes were barely about her.

    I worry about Zach and Highway 65. There is some subtext we don’t get yet. And are they setting us up to see a relationship between Zach and Will? It would be okay but I don’t see any chemistry.

    Scarlet clearly came out of the video shoot a changed person. I haven’t been her biggest fan (she’s too whiny for my taste), but what next femme fatale? Meh.

    Overall I’m still loving the new vibe. Less melodrama, more drama.

  5. Peggy Kroonenberg says:

    Maybe Gunnar won’t like the video, then get tough with Damian causing Scarlett to get mad at Gunnar and fall into Damian’s arms. Ugh! Will is gorg! He should fall for a gal, make him bi! Could Zach get to H65 and Rayna by using Will somehow? Also wonder is there is a connection with all the creepers?

  6. Amy says:

    I was hard on Nashville last week here, and the 30-something guys running it…cuz I didn’t love that episode or all the video Scarlett weirdness. I did watch it again and it didn’t strike me the same or as bad. Still not sure I love the Scarlett direction yet, and it’s obvious the director is going to play a part…so maybe we’ll see. But that IS what I do love about the show, the writing this year….it’s unfolding like real dramatic storylines…not fabricated, ABC-style sensational melodrama.
    LOVED all of last night’s show…the Rayna “mama-in-charge” scenes, the “little scenes” like ice-cream with Maddie….the realness of that is what is 30-something like…that IS how those things often happen with your kids…BIG conversations over little moments with some ice-cream in the kitchen.
    And can I give some Daphne love here…often times the youngest character is the smartest chic in the room…loving that she has a cute boy crush and a possible storyline…Maisy is the bomb.

    So forgive my last week rant CMT, because I’m still so grateful you picked up this show full of wonderful characters who we love…and I do really love what you are doing with it.

    Two ps’s….LOVED seeing Luke again (there was a time I wouldn’t say that but I really grew to like him, loved this yang, playing to Deac and Will’s yang…the real alpha-male on the show)…I think we need more of him. LOVED his song, miss his singing…find a place for him. pps. on that I think the “life” he described to Rayna is the life she would ultimately love…”writing songs at home, and going to cool places to play them.”. The business stuff does take over and it’s taking over Rayna’s musical life too…

    Which leads me to my other ps…still worried about Connie Britton’s comittment to the show…I cannot imagine a successful NashCMT without her.

    • Amy says:

      oops that was Luke yang, Deac & Will’s “yin”…or whichever way it goes I just meant Luke was the “guy’s guy” of the show that played nicely as against the all the others who are not. And I loved how he played Luke this week too…in subtle ways his vibe was clearly different, showing his growth…less in your face macho, more relaxed in his skin, more humble. I don’t know if anyone else caught it but when he took the camera off himself onstage and pointed to the audience…I just felt it was a move showing it was no longer all about Luke the poser on stage. Would love it if he does appearances while being on Highway 65 label.

  7. Amy says:

    oh yes ppps…liked the Juliette/Avery scenes too..and interesting the new direction for Juliette…I love that we have to follow all these stories to see how they will actually develop…very unlike how the show was handled on ABC. Tks again CMT for real writing and story development.

  8. Linda says:

    Loved that CMTpicked up this great show. ABC has a bad habit of canceling shows I loved to just keep us hanging. I thought that the show was more exciting. There were times on abc that were lacking excitement. CMT is starting to use all the characters, not one long drawn out with a few. Keep up the great job. Can’t wait every week for the next.

  9. z says:

    I knew it from last week’s little Zach/Will scene. I can actually see something there

  10. steven says:

    Are they ever gonna go back to the storyline involving Deacon’s bar?

    • Iakovos says:

      I guess The Beverly has been sold and Deacon has moved on. I cannot imagine him sticking around since it was his former friend/business partner and his daughter that caused Deacon so much trouble. It struck me odd an AA man would be a bar owner. I prefer Deacon making music, literally and with Rayna as his wife.

  11. steven says:

    That Flynn kid looked like Henry from The Americans.

  12. izzie b says:

    Juliette can’t arrive on time for anything!!! She was late for church both times, late for Hallie’s performance at the children’s center…… I’m glad they are letting her loosen up now and wear her hair down again instead of portraying the tense and bitter accident victim.

    This season is going great and I love it! Let’s ditch the Scarlet/Damien drama and yes, like others, I think something’s up money-man Zach and he’s going to mess up Rayna’s control of Highway 65.

  13. Sally says:

    Didn’t like the last ep but I liked this one. This ep felt more real and relatable. Loved the fact that CMT’s picking up old ABC storylines and showing how people can move on from old pain/insults (eg. Luke and Rayna, Rayna and Juliette, Deacon and Maddie). Also loved Deacon and Rayna being all cute and adorable but want to see some more of them, and more fun and fire.
    I’m still on the fence about Maddie and Clay, although it gave us that beautiful mother-daughter moment, and I’m totally not on board with the Scarlett-Damien ‘thing’, don’t know what to call it but it feels very wrong to me.

  14. EM714 says:

    Zach W is very suspect- I doubt the stalker they’ve shown is the real deal. Maybe he’s working on behalf of zach. Get a bad feeling from him and his creepy lingering looks. He’s def hiding something and has seemed off since the minute we first met him

  15. Sue says:

    Was not happy that Nashville the TV show is trying to create Nashville the City as a racist heaven where whites beat up black singers in the street – are you serious? This is the message that Nashville the TV show thinks is prevalent in Nashville the City? This was a hurtful lie that makes the TV show just another liberal voice…. another attempt at fake news…. that makes no sense!