It’s been some time since we spent the night with our deranged Nashville friends, but not to worry — this week’s drama makes up for the absence. For the first time together, Rayna and Juliette get their hairs sprayed, eyes shadowed and lips plumped with toxic gloss for the giant country stage. And it’s glorious.
But before we get into all the clichés of the episode, let’s backtrack a tad. Juliette found a new man… sort of. He’s this buff NFL star, who also happens to be creepilyin touch with his faith (which basically means he doesn’t shoplift). She likes him and his goody-goody ways, and all goes well until the paparazzi comes at them at the end of the night and he loses his cool. Now, photos of him looking totally roofied are out and things are bound to get ugly… again. Meanwhile, Avery is still pissing the hell out of everyone. After getting in the way of Scar and Gunnar’s big meeting, he took his swollen ego to some cougar bar and leapt at the chance to bang some mystery manager lady. Of course, Teddy is a lying ass. It’s unclear as to the details, but it’s all very shady — and includes a woman who may or may not have birthed his secret children (just a theory). Politics. And then there’s Ray and Dea: always fighting, always still loving each other. So, should we just get into it? Bad News for Kryptonite Juliette is having a grand time lounging poolside with her new pinchable football lover. She doesn’t even lift her face from his boyish cheeks when her manager comes out to grab her for a pow wow. It’s young love, and she can’t be bothered. Mister Grouch tells J that her canoodling isn’t getting her anywhere good after that shoplifting incident. In fact, instead of the positive publicity everyone thought it would bring, it’s actually doing the opposite. Plus, all of his lunatic football fans are blaming her for his poor performance. But she won’t turn her back on love, no way. Not in this moment, where everything feels right and his touch is still innocent and calming. She’s just not having it. But before she can walk away, Grouch says they have to meet with the record label immediately. Something has come up. When they finally arrive at the obnoxiously long table opposite Marshall Evans, the grey-haired label man, J finds out she’ll only be performing one song for the label’s anniversary concert. And it won’t be alone. She and Ray are taking the stage together — and there’s no way out. Rating: 5/10, because you knowany girl as delusional as J would somehow find a way to bring her boy-toy to the meeting. And make him stand up for her. Withdrawal No, no, no, not Deacon! Though, based on his potential relapse he may be… Anyway, no, I’m talking about Teddy! So, here’s the thing. Teddy’s been framed. Sort of. Remember that time he met that lady who used to scheme with him (and could be the mother of his children) in a car, and then by the water? And then they hugged? And kissed on the cheek? And talked closely? Well Coleman, his opponent, got his hands on the photos and presented them to slimy Ted. But he’s not ready to give up without a fight. Nope. He’s taking this one into his own hands and figuring it out. Well, not quite – he goes to daddy-in-law, Lamar. Rating: 9/10, because Teddy is such a twerp, it’s no surprise he’d squirm and go running to his d*ckhead “boss” aka “dad.” Wildcard at Heart Rayna brings her new edgy producer Liam McGuinness to rehearsals for the big anniversary night, then she runs into Deacon. She sees his faded sleeping tee, and can’t help but fall right back into her dream. That heavy moment when she and Dea shared inches on her tempur pedic tasting each other’s sweet breath. She can barely hear him when he calls her a “wildcard at heart,” talking about Liam on the surface, but we all know what’s going on. We sure do. But before Ray can tug at his Movember stache, she’s interrupted by news that Juliette will be joining her on stage for the closing act. Hell to the NO way is she accepting that. But once Liam tells her that J has a nice rack and knows how to “play the game” the claws come out and the party is on. Let’s do this. Rating: 8/10, because there’s no way Ray could walk away from a challenge like that. Letting Loose, Bound to Lose Scarlett is ready to be a ho. Her time has come. Ever since Avery shacked up with the cougar, Scar’s been on her own, chillin’ at the Bluebird, reminiscing about all the times she put on an apron and made him dinner in nice linen. The good times, you know? Well, now it’s just her, and she’s here to strut some sass. So she turns to what any other girl with a skank wish turns to: tequila. There she goes, ripping away shots that would put her ex-alcoholic (fingers crossed) uncle Deacon to shame. She’s about to have some FUN! Finally! There’s even a cute boy trying to dance with her, complimenting her sweet singing voice. HE EVEN KISSES HER. But before we can get to the good stuff, Gunnar’s raging jealousy comes flying out of the corner. He can’t bear to see his innocent singing-partner-slash-soulmate getting sucked on by some dweeb in a dive bar. Scar is so embarrassed by her behavior that she sprints out of the bar. She runs and runs and runs until her hair falls flat and her blush smears below her cheekbones. She feels lost in a town she knows like the back of her hand. She doesn’t know where she is anymore, until the door opens… and she’s in Avery’s home. No surprise she runs back into the arms of her d-bag ex-boyfriend, but he’s not alone. OF COURSE he’s not alone. The cougar says “hello.” Rating: 10/10, because it was only a matter of time before Scar ran back to her ex – and it’s unfortunately the biggest cliché of all. The All-Nighter After hours and hours of cat-scratching and bullying, Rayna and Juliette come to a quasi agreement: They’re going to co-write a song that they can both call their own. Ray pops over to J’s house unannounced like they’re old pals ready for a slumber party, and gets the notepad out. She means business. Before they both know it, they’re bonding over Deacon, kind of, and toying with the idea of a morning vodka bevy. These two are carazayyy! Rating: 3/10, because there’s no way Ray would give in like that and share a yellow pad with her nemesis. And there’s no way the label would allow for such short notice on their biggest night in 25 years. #Whatever. Shiny Gold Glitter Rayna and Juliette take the stage for their long-awaited performance. Their heels high, hair teased and glittered dresses a’sparklin’. Their song is the perfect mix of rock and country, and the two actually look like pals in that big, bright spotlight. The crowd goes wild at their dangling earrings and bronzed arms and they certainly steal the show. As for Deacon, well, he’s still up for grabs. Rating: 5/10, because certainly no one can believe these two have become friends so easily. Or, was it all just for show?… [Image Credit: Chris Hollo/ABC] Follow Anna on Twitter @thebrandedgirl More: ‘Nashville’ Get’s Full-Season Order, Y’all! ‘Nashville’ Recap: Private Jets and Cougar Bars ‘Nashville’ Recap: Secrets, Bribes, and Skinny Dipping