We've waited too long for the return of Nashville. Without the sweet sound of country music and Deacon's equally sweet face to distract us, we've all had too much time to stew over what's coming in season five.
First, let me say that the writers definitely upped their game. If the rest of the season is anything like the premiere, there will likely be more singing and musical moments than previous seasons. But really, who's complaining? Seeing the actors and musicians grow in their talents has been music to my ears. The performances in the show are on point, too. Not only have the actors and musicians grown, but the writers have as well. Episode one ("Wayfaring Stranger") and two ("Back in Baby's Arms") move slower than the previous seasons. I think Nashville is growing up!
Unfortunately, my first thoughts on the premiere episode were mostly along the lines of, "Maddie, knock it off." Isn't it about time? Her sassiness in season four almost crossed the line. When she gets stuck while trying to write a song, Maddie doesn't want to hear any advice on how to proceed. Everyone gets stuck, Maddie. You gotta deal, and sometimes dealing means accepting that your little sister wrote an amazing chorus for your song. Besides, when she asks Daphne to sing the song with her to test out the chorus, her little sister happily grabs her guitar. Daphne doesn't deserve the heat her sister dishes, but at least Maddie ate crow.
Scarlett made her first appearance during the Maddie-Daphne debacle, offering some sage advice. Collaboration surely is a lot better than struggling on your own, she says. Is it just me, or does Scarlett's advice sound like quotes from a best selling self-help book? I'd buy it. Regardless of how dramatic she might be, I'm excited to see the writers delve beneath her surface. Maybe that'll help her come to terms with the past she and Gunner share. Or maybe not, since Scarlett seems to be pouring gasoline on their fire by interrogating Gunner about "what the song is really about."
Is it just me, or did Rayna's panic attack on the plane accurately describe how you felt watching Juliette's plane crash memory?
I'm excited to watch Juliette's storyline this season. I think the writers are going to do a lot with her. There seems to be an overall theme of getting back to your roots and finding yourself so far. Maybe Juliette's flirtation with death has taught her to look at her glass as half full? I could be wrong, but the premiere has me thinking that Juliette is learning that she has a reason to live. Even s0, Juliette still proclaims she's useless when Avery tries to help her feed their daughter. God's got a great plan for you, you just gotta find it. And sweetheart, you're not useless, but if you don't start appreciating Avery's unwavering support I might start to dislike you. Just saying.
I gained a real respect for Will when he shut down Murray's advances. He's not trying to put you in a suit, Will, he's trying to do something else. Gunner lost respect points when he jumped the gun after Scarlett asked him who the song was really about. With their turbulent past, it's no wonder Scarlett has turned her pain into music.
Speaking of pain, Deacon spoke profoundly about how Scarlett's pain is a gift, but his is simply pain. Get over yourself, Deacon. What else is there to write music about? For the record, Deacon absolutely should make the concept album Rayna is requesting his collaboration on. Rayna and Deacon both seem to be searching for something they lost this season. Aside from the whiplash they've caused me, Deacon and Rayna are forever ruining my relationship expectations. Also my expectations of what room service should be like.
Oh, Rayna. Could you look anymore perfect? And could you continue to make quirky comments like, "Ashley Whats-Her-Nuggets"? From the get-go, Rayna is pursuing a path back to herself. To her roots. She says, "None of this will last forever," before taking a cross country road trip back home. Somewhere along the way, Rayna gets a reminder that the song "Wayfaring Stranger" looks deeply into her soul. Even if you forget who you are as an artist, Rayna, we don't.
READ MORE: Meet the Cast of Nashville Season 5
The song Deacon serenades Rayna with at the end of the episode also sent shivers up my spine. Deacon, your pain is a gift too. Everyone seems to be remembering who they are and what's important.
Except for the tech guy, because let's face it. His top priority is sending flowers to Rayna and getting ready to start stalking her. Bring it on, season five.