Saturday, November 24, 2012

Nashville 1.06: "You're Gonna Change (Or I'm Gonna Leave)

“If any of these adorable baby animals take a crap on me, I’m going to be very upset.”

This episode of “Nashville” seemed to take a lot of the established plots off in new directions, which I definitely appreciated. Rayna continues her quest to make music on her own terms, Juliette makes time with an NFL rookie QB instead of Deacon for once, and the Avery/Scarlett/Gunnar triangle starts to explode. And there are some new twists and turns in the political intrigue department, but I don’t care about that nearly as much as I care about what’s going on with the musician characters. Which I guess is kind of odd considering in real life, I work in government and have music as a hobby, not the other way around. The show overall succeeds much more when it’s an examination of Nashville as a place where people who love to make music come to perfect and have success in their craft. As we saw in this episode, there is plenty of drama and backstabbing in that department alone.

As I mentioned above, Rayna is continuing in her quest to make music on her own terms. Not only is she determined to write all the songs for her new albums on her own, she also wants a new producer so that her sound will be new as well. She’s got her heart set on Irish rocker Liam McGuiness, even though he is new to Nashville and has no connections to country music. Rayna’s manager, Bucky, sets up a consultation. Rayna and Bucky show up at the door to Liam’s studio, but he turns them away. He says he accepted the consult as a courtesy, but music for moms in minivans isn’t really his thing. And then he slams the door in their face. Rayna, ever persistent, goes back to Liam’s studio the next day. She shows spunk and points out that she drives an SUV, not a minivan, and Liam lets her inside to have a real talk.

Meanwhile, Juliette and her team are in overdrive trying to rehabilitate her image after the whole shoplifting seen around the Internet incident. This involves Juliette attending a fundraiser for the local zoo, which obviously doesn’t thrill Juliette. A rookie NFL quarterback, Sean, is running the fundraiser, and he and Juliette seem to get along well enough. A photo of Juliette, Sean and some sort of rodent crawling all over Juliette trends well on Twitter, so Juliette’s PR person wants to set up a date between Juliette and Sean. Over dinner, Juliette and Sean trade insults, but they also seem to develop a grudging respect for each other. Juliette ends up inviting Sean to travel to Miami with her on her private jet. On the plane, Juliette and Sean bond more when Sean starts playing one of Juliette’s songs on the guitar and they sing together. They dance at a club in Miami (although Sean doesn’t drink), and on their way out, Juliette gets hounded by a Paparazzo. In trying to get Juliette away safely, Sean shoves the Paparazzo.

In silly political news, Teddy is still seven points behind in the polls, so Lamar has a devious plan. He wants to set up a traffic stop to keep Coleman from getting to a “clean campaign pledge” signing ceremony on time. Because he’s spineless, Teddy reluctantly agrees. When Coleman is stopped, the police find the Oxycontin Deacon surrendered to him in the last episode, and Coleman is arrested. Coleman has to give press conferences and submit to blood tests to try to get out of this whole mess, and both Teddy and Rayna are pretty pissed at Lamar about it. Rayna more than Teddy, of course, because again, Teddy is spineless. Deacon probably feels worst of all, and he offers to give an interview to clear everything up. Coleman refuses to let Deacon do that, though, stressing that NA is anonymous for a good reason. Later, though, Coleman finds himself in an ethical quandary when a PI approaches him with pictures of Teddy and Peggy’s meeting in the last episode. It really looks like two people having an affair (even though it isn’t), and it could ruin the election for Teddy. Coleman debates leaking the pictures with his wife, who says he should definitely go for it.

In the main plot of this episode, Avery finds out that a major regional promoter will be at the 5 Spot. If Avery and his band rock their performance that night, they could be the opening act for the Lumineers. The performance does indeed rock, but the promoter is only luke warm on Avery’s band. A manager, Marilyn, is listening in, however, and she offers to manage Avery’s band. Avery asks Deacon for advice, and Deacon promises to put in a good word with the promoter. Deacon does as promised, but he also has a conversation with Marilyn. He warns her that she won’t be sleeping with Avery because Avery is his niece’s boyfriend and he doesn’t want her heart broken. Apparently Marilyn sleeps with all her young talent. Gunnar, naturally, hears this conversation since it happens at the Bluebird. Meanwhile, Avery finds out that his band didn’t get the Lumineers gig after all.

Elsewhere in Nashville, while Rayna and Liam are talking about Rayna’s new album, Liam convinces Rayna to stay at his studio a little late for a drink. She wakes up hung over back at home the next morning, and she can’t remember much of what happened the night before. She’s too late to make cupcakes for the Fall Festival at her daughters’ school, and she’s just generally a mess. Instead of trying to make that right, though, she goes back to Liam’s studio, where he shows her a video of her singing the night before, whiskey in hand. Liam turns that recording session into a publishable track, and Rayna shows it to one of her label execs. The label exec have a big argument over where Rayna wants to take her sound and the fact that Rayna is refusing to use a label-approved producer, and Rayna threatens to leave for another label.

Juliette’s PR guru lady has bad news. Apparently the Paparazzo Sean attacked took a really unflattering photo of Sean. It looks like he’s completely wasted and belligerent, even though he actually had nothing to drink. If this gets online, it could ruin Sean’s image and career. Juliette’s got a plan, though. She ends up buying the photos and the accompanying SD card from the Paparazzo, and she also offers to give him the heads-up the next five times she goes out. Sean stops by Juliette’s house to thank her, and Juliette explains that she did what she did because nobody had ever defended her before. Sean wants to have quiet nights in from now on, and he asks Juliette to “hang in” with him sometime. She seems to think that sounds like a nice idea too.

Avery (sort of) valiantly tries to resist Marilyn, but when one of his band mates says he can’t think of anything to do but practice some more, Avery gets too pissed about their lack of success, and he agrees to meet Marilyn that evening. Meanwhile, Gunnar tells Scarlett about how he saw Deacon try to scare Marilyn away from Avery. Scarlett runs off to confront Deacon, who tells her that Marilyn sleeps with all her clients. Avery does still go to the “meeting” with Marilyn, and they pretty much start making out immediately, but when Marilyn tries to take it farther, Avery has second thoughts and calls it off. Scarlett confronts Avery when he gets home, and while Avery insists nothing really happened, Scarlett is still (rightfully) pissed that he would even consider cheating on her to get ahead in his career. Scarlett ends up moving out, and she’s going to be bunking with Deacon for a while. Does this mean that the countdown to Gunnar/Hayley implosion is starting?

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