Nashville: Where He Leads Me Review

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Nashville gave us an entertaining episode this week with a lot of big developments.  There was no great Rayna-Juliette confrontations, but it seems their teaming up is becoming more and more inevitable.

The episode picked up right where the last one left off, with Marshall and the rest of the crew congratulating the two songtresses on their stellar duet.  It’s interesting that Marshall personally thanked Rayna in her dressing room, but Juliette receives flowers from him the next day.  Rayna may not be the hitmaker she used to be, but Juliette seems to be in hotter water because of her scandals.

Unfortunately for Rayna, she must deal with her own public drama after Teddy confesses about his and Peggy’s embezzling ways.  Call me crazy, but the more Teddy denies he was romantic with Peggy, the more I don’t believe him.  There’s just no way she would be that attached to him if they were just business partners.  Not to mention, it makes her OD-ing on sleeping pills after Coleman releases the incriminating photos a little overdramatic.  If there was no affair, she should just explain herself.  On the other hand, admitting to white collar crime isn’t the best move in our recession-prone times either.  Anyway, Rayna is furious at Teddy and the rest of her family for keeping this secret from her for so long, but decides to stand by her man…sort of.  At a press conference she defends her husband, but then whispers into his ear that she’s only helping him for the sake of their children.  Seems like splitsville isn’t too far away.

In the past weeks, I’ve neglected to delve too deep into Juliette’s relationship with footballer Sean because it never seemed like anything serious.  This week, however, their love life was put front and center when he asks her to come meet her family.  It was interesting to watch Juliette feel a new sense of belongingness with Sean’s old fashioned, church-going clan, but it makes sense since it’s a lot nicer than the family she actually grew up with.  Hayden Panettiere gives another great performance as she refuses a letter sent to her by her mother from rehab.  Hearing about her past explains so much of who she is today, as well as why she wants to escape into Sean’s cookie cutter world.  Of course, since his mother reveals she doesn’t actually approve, she decides to pop the question.  The marriage question.  Yowza.

Once again Nashville‘s weak points fall on Scarlett and her revolving door of boy troubles.  Avery is out of the picture as producer Dominic Wells (guest star Wyclef Jean) whisks him away from his band to Atlanta.  Now Gunnar vies for her heart, and she surprisingly turns him down.  I guess it makes sense that she wouldn’t want to jump right from one relationship into another, but she and Gunnar have an obvious chemistry and they make beautiful music together.  Who I really feel bad for, though, is Hayley.  She drew the short straw this week, trying at first to hold on to Gunnar, but eventually realizing she’s just getting in the way.

The episode’s end held the most titillating moments of the night.  First, Deacon agrees to tour with a new band, which is interesting because his absence will definitely be felt.  More importantly though, Rayna meets Marshall for a drink and he brings up the idea of a co-headlining tour again, with each artist alternating who gets to close the show each night.  Surprisingly, Rayna isn’t opposed to it.  She doesn’t jump for joy at the idea, but she’s not against it.  Could this be the rivalry story we’ve been waiting for?  So far, Nashville‘s main problem is that it’s been focusing too much on relationship drama instead of focusing on the music.  Any old show on The CW can offer up relationship drama.  What I want to see is some real heat inside the music industry.  If this tour happens, and it looks like it will, then I might just get what I want.  Grade: B+

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