Monday, November 5, 2012

Nashville 1.04: "We Live in Two Different Worlds"

“That's the problem with being on top. It's that people aren't just waiting for you to fall, they're trying to cause you to.”

This was the episode where all of the conflict that was set up in the first three episodes starts to come to a boil. The drama hasn’t quite hit its height yet (that looks like it will be happening in the next episode), but things definitely started moving along in this one. This episode did convince me more than ever, however, that the show could do without the political plot. There is more than enough drama happening just in the music industry. The Gunnar/Scarlett/Avery triangle (now made a quadrangle with the addition of music publisher assistant Hayley) isn’t going anywhere any time soon. And there’s plenty to mine with Rayna/Deacon/Teddy/Juliette without getting too much into Teddy’s political aspirations and Lamar’s supervillainy. I think the idea of examining the country music industry from the points of view of characters at all different points in their careers is really cool, and I wish the show would capitalize on that more. That being said, it’s still a plenty enjoyable watch. I don’t really love country music, but this show makes me want to go to Nashville just to be around people so passionate about doing what they love.

Rayna’s sister tells Rayna that Teddy’s not polling well. Coleman has a pretty comfortable lead at the moment. Teddy has a fundraiser coming up at the local country club, and in her possibly misguided determination to “stand by her man,” Rayna offers to sing at the event. This could be because she’s feeling guilty about the very steamy dream she had about Deacon to open the episode! Rayna’s manager, not realizing the awkwardness going on between Rayna and Deacon right now (or maybe just not caring), calls Deacon and asks him to lead Rayna’s band for the fund raiser. Deacon reluctantly agrees, because he’s still whipped by Rayna, even though he’s having coffee with Coleman as he makes the decision. Oh, and it turns out that Coleman is Deacon’s sponsor. And the plot thickens.

Meanwhile, police show up at Juliette’s door because the video of her shoplifting has become a Youtube sensation, and shoplifting is, you know, a crime. Once Juliette is back home from that little adventure, her handlers are all in a tizzy. The situation is already a publicity nightmare and has the potential to become even worse. So they’re flying in the best publicist in New York to help contain it. Juliette has no interest in any of it, though. She’s oddly chipper and serene. Her façade only breaks when her mom says something and she yells at her handlers to get rid of her mom already. The aloofness continues even after the big shot publicist arrives. Juliette just does yoga and refuses to take any of the publicist’s suggestions. This (rightfully) drives the publicist a little nuts.

Juliette finally starts to realize the gravity of her situation (or the gravity of the situation finally eclipses her being pissed off at her mom) when deals she had previously set up start falling through. For instance, her manager tells her that she’ll only be an audience member at the CMA’s. They have taken Juliette off the list of presenters. At this point, Juliette finally agrees to do an interview with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America to try and set the story straight. The interview itself is an absolute disaster. First, Juliette tries to play the victim by saying that if she hadn’t been hounded by fans, she would have paid for the nail polish instead of rushing out of the store. Then, when Robin Roberts dares to ask Juliette a question about her mother, Juliette storms out of the interview. Juliette’s storm-out is soon all over the internet, and this is really the final straw. Her tour sponsors start pulling out, and the tour is effectively cancelled due to lack of funding. Juliette’s manager is even ready to walk, because he’s sick of her not listening to his advice. Juliette finally gets the hint that she’s going to have to make some significant changes in her life if she’s going to preserve her career, and she tearfully agrees to do whatever her manager suggests. Her manager says she’s going to need to do a contrition publicity tour, but for now, she should just call a friend and vent. Juliette protests that she doesn’t have any friends, but she ends up calling Deacon, of course.

Gunnar and Scarlett continue to have professional success, and unfortunately, it continues to cause problems for Scarlett and Avery. Gunnar stops by Scarlett and Avery’s house to deliver the good news, and Scarlett blatantly pushes past Gunnar’s attempt at a celebratory hug to hug Avery. Can Scarlett really dig the knife any deeper into that poor boy’s heart? I mean, I know Gunnar kind of has it coming to him for going after a girl with a serious boyfriend, but Avery is such a tool! Anyway, Gunnar and Scarlett get a tour of their music publisher’s offices, where it looks like they’ll be spending a lot of time. Apparently the office has “writing rooms” where they’re expected to be on a regular basis. Does anybody know if this is realistic? I always thought songwriting was more of a work from home career. Anyway, Gunnar meets and has some chemistry with Hayley, who is an assistant at the office.

Gunnar, Scarlett, and Avery are invited out to dinner with some of the publishing company big wigs (and Hayley, too). The dinner, unfortunately doesn’t go very well at all. The publishing big wigs ask Scarlett questions about her writing process and such, and Avery gets kind of pissed off when Scarlett actually has thoughtful answers. Because he was supposed to be the songwriter, not Scarlett. It gets even worse when Scarlet tries to be nice and tells the publishing bigwigs what a great musician Avery is. Avery’s having a really difficult time not being the successful one in their partnership. Gunnar has a much better night than Scarlett. When we next see him, he and Hayley are post-coital and quite happy. They go out for a little walk once they’re both dressed, and Scarlett sees them when driving up to pick Gunnar up for work. She ends up turning around and having a meal with her Uncle Deacon, who tries to explain how it’s difficult to be the one in the relationship who is struggling career-wise. When she goes home, Scarlett begs Avery to start supporting her, but he’s not very helpful. He says he’s trying. I don’t think he’s trying very hard.

The Rayna/Deacon/Teddy plot this week largely centers around the big country club fundraiser for Teddy. It turns out that the chair of the fundraiser host committee is an ex-girlfriend of Teddy’s named Peggy. They were an item about fifteen years ago, but it’s clear that there’s still something there. Teddy and Deacon get into a huge argument before the fundraiser, with Teddy being pissed off that Deacon is at his event (considering his history with Rayna and all) and Deacon making it clear that he intends to vote for Coleman, not Deacon. Rayna and Deacon perform a song for the fundraiser (and not even one of their old love songs), and Rayna, Teddy, Deacon, and Peggy all stare daggers at each other through the whole thing. At the end of the song, Teddy walks out. Back stage, Rayna and Deacon have a painful conversation that at leaves Rayna in tears. Back at home, a still tearful Rayna tells Teddy that she’s firing Deacon. Teddy’s not being entirely honest, though. He and Peggy have a clandestine meeting where they allude to something bad they did a long time ago that can’t at all every be discovered.

No comments:

Post a Comment