“Nashville” Recap: All About Juliette


It’s here and you’ve been waiting for it. It’s Nashville. We are first introduced to Rayna James (Connie Britton) the reigning queen of country music when she’s chasing her children with rollers in her hair. She’s a regular Reba Martina Faith Shania sorta thang. Her husband Teddy (Eric Close) swoops in to take the kids.

“Why does mom have to go to work? I thought we were rich,” asks one small human.

“We are but now we’re a different kind of rich called ‘cash poor.’” But so rich in charisma.

We cut to Rayna on stage at the Grand Ole Opry and listen guys, Connie Britton is doing her own singing. I know this because I read an article about it and she said she did. She also said she played Dolly Gallagher Levi in Hello, Dolly! in high school. So we can all relate to Connie Britton.

After her set, Rayna’s handsome lead guitarist Deacon Clayborne (Charles Esten) introduces her to his poet niece Scarlett (Clare Bowen) and her slimey boyfriend Avery (Jonathan Jackson).

Next we meet Hayden Panettiere’s Juliette Barnes getting her lips glossed. She looks like she smells like Jergen’s Natural Glow, Aussie Sprunch spray and a vanilla scented car air freshener. Juliette is like Taylor Swift’s cousin from her dad’s side who had an affair with her chemistry teacher and doesn’t have any female friends. She’s barking orders to her assistant like she learned how to have one by watching The Devil Wears Prada. “How did my white trash mother get my number? Isn’t it part of your job to make sure my mom doesn’t call my phone?” Then Juliette’s handler escorts her to meet the Rayna and instructs her to be nice.

Making her way down the hall Rayna sees her friend, Coleman (Robert Wisdom) who’s preparing to announce he’s running for mayor. Rayna agrees to sing at his announcement event. Meanwhile Juliette is Aaron Sorkin-ing down the hall and sees Deacon and drools all over him. She’s a fan and she wants him in her band. Then she bumps into Avery and Scarlett and is all “Bump into me again but slower.” Ugh.

Then it’s time: “Mariah Carey, this is Nicki Minaj.” Juliette is disrespectful and makes some quip about her white trash mama listening to Rayna’s music while she was still in her belly.” Without missing a beat Rayna instructs the little harlot to get her t*ts in her dress and get the f*ck on stage.

Intervention time: Rayna, you’re concert isn’t selling. We think you should coheadline with Juliette Barnes. “Noooooo,” complete with vocal fry, “You are not seriously insinuating that I open for that orange-tinted tween.” Imagine Mariah Carey having this conversation with her people about opening for Nicki Minaj. I’m actually having an anxiety attack over my Kung Pao Chicken right now thinking about it.

Rayna needs some privacy. Why? Because she is probably going to do it. Otherwise she loses money and her tour gets cancelled. They need her answer by Monday. Meanwhile Juliette croaks out some song. Hayden Panettiere is doing her own singing on stage too, but she never did Hello, Dolly! in high school. Hell she didn’t even do, Grease. In other words, we can’t relate to this girl.

Later Rayna shows up at her insufferable father’s (Powers Boothe) event declaring it Lamar Wyatt Day! He’s some sort of oil tycoon, titan of something or other. Meanwhile Juliette is making a country-pop song about boys and buses having a lot in common. Autotune jokes made. “Heartbreaker” says Randy (Burgess Jenkins) the sexy producer.

The next day Rayna is being so relatable driving her girls to school until the car ride is poisoned by Juliette Barnes on the radio. Rayna’s daughters turn it up and sing along and I think they are actually trying to harmonize. Rayna suddenly sympathizes with mothers who kill their children and turns it off. “Mama’s got a headache.” LIVING for Connie Britton.

Later she commiserates with Teddy about how it’s coheadline or bust. Teddy’s not winning the bread and in order to keep living their life it’s either lose promotion of the album or open for Nicki Minaj. Rayna heads over to see Randy about trying to cut a more commercial single. She should have taken his advice from the get go. Turns out good songs don’t sit. They’ve all been scooped up. And Randy’s too busy now working on Juliette’s album. Rayna is all, “That bitch blows.” And guess what? Juliette hears her. Hayden with her mane of extensions is there in his bed wrapped in a sheet listening. She gone and f*cked all the commercial singles right out of Randy.

Later Deacon is performing an intimate set at old Nashville standby The Bluebird Cafe. His niece, Scarlett is there still wearing a doily for a dress and delivering beers. Juliette shows up in disguise in a fedora over her mound of hair with no makeup. Turns out she is emotionally invested in music. Slimey Avery schmoozes with Deacon about his demos. Deacon’s all, “NO.”

Enter Gunnar (Sam Palladio), a cute bartender with expressive eyes and a big pompadour. He’s the Deacon approved love interest for Scarlett and apparently the superior musician.

In the parking lot, boom, Deacon is greeted by Juliette with an offer he should definitely refuse. She wants to record one of his songs and wants him to play with her. “I bet you and I could have a lot of fun on the road.” Deacon seems kinda turned on and kinda scared shitless by this sociopath.

The next day in the greeny pasture, Lamar is busy being a powerful tycoon and suggesting they push deadbeat husband, Teddy for mayor. “How mad is Rayna gonna be?” he muhahahas. Meanwhile Rayna is having her own version of a meltdown on TRL. She’s freaking out because her mic is distorting her voice and she needs to have an answer to the label. She finds comfort on a walk with Deacon where it’s confirmed that the sexual tension between Rayna and Deacon was definitely satisfied once upon a time.

It comes out that Juliette is coming after Deacon. He’s all, “She said she wants me to write for her.” And Rayna’s all, “Bitch knew how to stroke your ego. What’s next? She’s going to start getting her weaves from the same place as me?” Real talk: Deacon wished Rayna recorded more of his songs. They’ve got a regular Stevie Nicks/Lindsey Buckingham thing going on. I just want her to kiss his handsome crows feet. Meanwhile Juliette is a sobbing mess in a storage room talking to her crackhead mother. Randy comes through looking for her. She greets him with a, “My mama’s a junkie. Do me in this utilities room.”

Titan Tycoon has convinced Teddy to run for mayor in spite of his subpar life. “First piece of mayoral advice, ‘Grow a pair!’” and tell your wife. Turns out, Teddy seems like he kinda wants this. Or was convinced he does. He pleads with Rayna, “I know I wasn’t your first choice. I know you settled for me but how about I get my turn in the spotlight.” Oh, jesus.

Back at the Bluebird Cafe, Gunnar has discovered something crazy about Scarlett’s poems. They’re songs. And he’s discovered her music is good. Back at the label Rayna is having a her meeting with her label. She’s all, “I’ve got nine Grammys, four CMAs — don’t be a haterrr!” This is so frustrating. Is this how Kelly Clarkson felt when My December came out? THEY NEED AN ANSWER. Rayna tells them they can suck her d*ck and peaces out. “KISS MY DECISION.”

Back at the estate, Titan Tycoon is bullying Rayna into accepting Teddy’s bid for mayor. Then Titan hits Rayna with the news that she’s no self-made woman. He was the investor in her original album and if she doesn’t make good by him for Teddy he’ll let Teddy know that their oldest daughter just ain’t his. Ouch. Bitch. Slapped.

Later in the rainy night, Randy surprises Juliette at her home, but she’s all, “Don’t come knocking on my door ever.” But then she has to get back to straddling…Deacon! NO! Don’t do it! At the Bluebird Cafe, Scarlett and Gunnar test out one of their new songs at the open mic. Rayna’s mentor, Watty White (J. D. Souther) is feeling the hell out of this song. He pulls a drunk white girl and calls Rayna. He just holds his phone up so she can be wooed by the song. A huge smile grows on Rayna’s face as she walks on stage to support Teddy. Shit just got real.


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