Nashville: Move It on Over Review

This week’s Nashville is all about starting anew.   Though it falters a bit in places, it eventually shows the promise of heading in a very interesting direction.

First, Deacon offers to help Juliette get her mother into rehab after she finds her relapsed.  Together, they end up getting Mama Barnes into a clinic, but not before she gives Juliette a swift slap to the face.  Yikes.  Juliette decides she needs a fresh start, and moves from her lavish home into an even more lavish home.  It’s not exactly clear why she feels the need to move, but seeing her stare out into the distance from her oversized pool made me think that something exciting is going to happen at her new digs.

Meanwhile, Rayna struggles to move past her professional breakup with Deacon, but eventually realizes she needs to start thinking for herself.  She writes a new song on her own, and her manager thinks it’s a hit.  Things don’t work out too well on Deacon’s end, though.  After performing a song called “Sideshow” (which is completely and obviously about Rayna) at The Blue Bird, he gets into a fist fight with two patrons who teased him about not having her there to sing with him.  This seems a little out of character for someone who was a pillar of support for Juliette earlier on in the episode, but it was an opportunity to show the distance Rayna is putting between herself and Deacon, when she ignores his call to bail him out of jail.

Then there’s the matter of Teddy, who is becoming increasingly annoying as this show progresses on.  Originally coming off as a supportive spouse, Teddy seems to be moving further away from Rayna as he tries to advance his political career.  The two have a pretty bland conversation when they’re both up late one night, and it becomes clear that he cares much more about himself than his marriage.  Perhaps their flame is about to die out.  Speaking of flames, Peggy continues to want to come clean about her past she shared with Mr. Conrad.  It turns out that this past is really referring to when they embezzled money together, but it’s hard to believe Teddy for a second when he says the two of them were just business partners.

Scarlett finally grows a pair in this episode, and tells off Avery after he hijacks a potential audition she and Gunnar had with Lady Antebellum’s writing team.  His guitar rifts end up overshadowing Scarlett and Gunnar’s song.  While it was good to finally see Scarlett stand up to her man, it was also so unnecessary to see her have the “we’re just friends” talk with Gunnar.  Gunnar knows that they’re just friends and besides, he seems to really have a thing for sexy office assistant Hayley.

So far, this show has been a weekly example of an excellent character study.  The dialogue is smarter than your average network drama, and the singers, songwriters, and politicians of Callie Khouri’s world seem like real, grounded people.  But the show that promised us a “chart-topping rivalry,” doesn’t really seem to be going anywhere.  In fact, since their awkward encounter in episode 2, Rayna and Juliette haven’t even spoken to each other.

It looked as though this episode was going to offer up more of the same, but then it ended on a high note; lending itself to some tantalizing potential new plots.  With Juliette’s move, Rayna’s new hit, and the incriminating photos a mysterious man takes of Teddy and Peggy together, I’m excited to see what happens next.  Grade: B

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