Saturday, April 20, 2013

Nashville 1.17: "My Heart Would Know"

“You know what? Rayna is not my family. And let me tell you something. She ain't yours either!” “Yes she is.”
-Juliette and Deacon

“My Heart Would Know” was a highly soapy, but rather sedate, episode of Nashville. There were some big reveals, but other than some ranting from Lamar, nothing really rocked the boat all that much. I think what was most enjoyable about this episode was the deepening of the relationship between Rayna and Deacon. Sure, their relationship was already very deep given their long history, but I think this episode did a better job than most at really conveying that. Nevermind the fact that Deacon is still with Stacey the vet at the end of the episode. I don’t think that will be lasting much longer. Surprisingly, the one thing I really didn’t like in this episode was the Gunnar and Scarlett plot. Maybe because we haven’t had a real Gunnar and Scarlett song since Jason died. Their gorgeous music is really the thing that makes this show for me. Instead, Gunnar is still inexplicably excluded from the Edgehill record deal. I appreciate that he’s not a jealous bastard like Avery, but I don’t like Gunnar and Scarlett being in such a strange place. I want to hear their beautiful music again.

This episode mostly centers around the fallout of Lamar’s health crisis from the end of the last episode. It turns out that he has had a heart attack, and he’s in the hospital. Rayna gets the news late at night, and she stops by Juliette’s room while Juliette is in flagrante with Dante to tell her that she needs to go back to Nashville for a little while. I think Rayna just assumes that the Red Lips/White Lies tour will take a little break, but Juliette, egged on by Dante, has other ideas. She wants to turn the dates Rayna has to cancel into the 100% Juliette Barnes show. This means that Deacon needs to teach the band ten new songs in the space of an afternoon, which makes everyone very, very unhappy. Deacon tries to convey this to Juliette, but she doesn’t take it well at all. She accuses Deacon of not having her back like Dante does. Which shows just how skewed Juliette’s perception has become.

When Rayna gets the news about Lamar’s heart attack, she rushes home in Juliette’s jet (which was actually a nice gesture) and goes right to the hospital. She keeps trying to justify her strong reaction by saying how upset her daughters are about their grandpa being in the hospital. As much as she doesn’t want to admit it, I think Rayna does still care about her dad. He’s her dad, after all, even if he is kind of a scheming asshole. Watty shows up at the hospital to support Rayna, and when Lamar sees him, he starts throwing a fit, and Tandy has to walk him back into his room so he doesn’t have another heart attack. Rayna asks for an explanation from Watty, and she’s not really prepared for what she gets. Early in the season, we learned that Rayna’s mom had a “musician friend” who was pretty much a constant affair while she was married to Lamar. That musician friend was Watty, which explains why he’s taken such a special interest in Rayna’s career over the years. And we have our first really soapy moment of the episode. Another comes when some digging by Tandy uncovers that Peggy is the one who leaked news of Rayna and Teddy’s divorce to the tabloids.

Meanwhile, Avery heads out to New York to hook up with the Red Lips/White Lies tour as a roadie. Deacon is kind of surprised to see him there, but he knows Avery is talented, so he goes with it. Avery, though, makes the mistake of going into Juliette’s trailer when looking for some equipment, and catches Juliette and Dante having sex (again). Juliette doesn’t see Avery there, but Dante does, and he’s not happy about it. Later, when Dante and Avery are alone, Dante takes it upon himself to fire Avery. Avery reaches out to Deacon and tells Deacon what he saw, and Deacon is incensed. Deacon tells Avery to go back to work and confronts Juliette. Juliette just keeps accusing Deacon of not having her back. Meanwhile, Jolene tries to make a move on Dante, too. Like mother, like daughter, I guess? Juliette catches Jolene trying to make a move and goes completely crazy. By the end of the episode, she feels kind of bad, so she offers to send Jolene home to Nashville (which Jolene had asked for). Jolene’s going to have a new sober companion, though, because Juliette wants to hire Dante as her manager. Because that will end well.

The Gunnar and Scarlett plot, as I already mentioned, was probably the least satisfying part of this episode. Gunnar and Scarlett are together and happy, but everything is just plain off with them. I’m not saying I want them to break up, because I don’t want anything jeopardizing their gorgeous music. I want making that wonderful music. Anyway, Scarlett’s going ahead with the solo record deal, even though it makes no sense that Edgehill wouldn’t give Gunnar a second chance given the circumstances. Gunnar’s just being mopey and refusing to even try writing. Scarlett suggests that they hang out with Will a bit, hoping that maybe he can inject a little life in Gunnar. The three have a nice evening together singing karaoke. Scarlett and Will give a high energy performance, and I’m seeing the neon signs saying Gunnar might get cheated on soon. Scarlett’s drunk and has a meeting at Edgehill the next day, so Gunnar and Will take her home and continue the party with just the two of them. This results in Will driving his truck over the train tracks, playing chicken with the trains. For some reason I don’t quite understand (because it seems like a really dumb move), this reinvigorates Gunnar and he starts writing again. Maybe Gunnar will be the one cheating with Will?

Rayna leaves Deacon a rather despondent voice mail for Deacon from the hospital. Deacon doesn’t respond at first, but when he’s fighting with Juliette, he changes his mind. Deacon tells Juliette that the concerts should have been cancelled until Rayna gets back, and Juliette lashes out by saying that Rayna isn’t Deacon’s family. In what was one of my favorite moments of the episode, Deacon, in a shaky voice, says “she is” before leaving. The next best moment is when Deacon shows up at the hospital to comfort an exhausted Rayna. Deacon and Rayna just have such great chemistry that it’s always a pleasure to see them together. Their conversation reveals that they have known each other since they were teens, and I appreciated learning more about their history. Deacon eventually has to go home to Stacey, and while he seems happy-ish to see her again, it’s pretty clear that it’s not going to last much longer.

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