Nashville 4×01 “Can’t Let Go” Recap

Spoilers Ahead

Tonight’s premiere was engaging, but the drama that’s to come in the following weeks will undoubtedly be better.

Episode Summary: Beverly’s suffered through an aneurism. Juliette still hasn’t confronted her postpartum depression. Avery moves in with Gunnar and Will. Will’s career’s been put on pause after he publicly came out. Scarlett tells Caleb she loves him. Maddie refuses to believe Teddy’s innocent while Daphne holds on to the hope that her father will come home soon. Oh, and Deacon hasn’t died — thankfully. Although let’s be real is anyone surprised?

Review | Analysis: I’ve missed the ridiculous drama in Nashville, but mostly I’ve missed having such a powerful female figure like Rayna Jaymes on my screen. I shouldn’t ever question if I could possibly love her more because clearly the answer is always yes. And while tonight’s episode caught us up on everyone, I was mostly floored by her continuous dedication to people. Essentially most of the episode was great, but I could’ve definitely done without the overly dramatic moments like Deacon and Rayna staring at empty beds. Your other half’s not dead, y’all.

To kick things off, I’m so upset at the fact that Layla is still with Jeff. There’s absolutely no way this relationship can be written to be anything other than problematic and disturbing. Jeff Fordum isn’t trustworthy and it’s going to take a very long time for that to change. That said, it broke my heart to see Layla’s desperation as she called him and got no reply back. It’s heartbreaking to see that she actually believes she’s the only one for him when the truth is, he’s only using her. She’s got great potential and I’d really love to see more from her character this season — preferably far far away from Jeff. It’d be nice if she chose to sign with Highway 65 instead because that’d let her make the music she wants all while remaining in a safer environment that genuinely cares for her well being.

It’s unfortunate that Will’s honesty wasn’t as respected as it should’ve been. Instead he’s now back to hating himself and feeling as though he doesn’t belong when this is the first time he’s done something for himself. It’s nice to see Kevin continuously support him and I hope that eventually leads to him choosing to be happy despite the circumstances. At one point, he’s going to be accepted and his honesty is going to be valued, but until then I would rather not see him sulk around as though he’s defined solely by his sexuality. Will’s more than that and I hope as the season progresses we see just how much he grows as a character.

It’s hard to believe that at one point in the series, Gunnar was such an excellent support system for Scarlett. It’s hard to believe he’s the same man who inspired her to turn her poetry into music. There’s a lot that went on between them but it’s becoming really hard to root for them as I used to especially after tonight’s episode. It was wrong of Gunnar to kiss Scarlett in a moment of mutual vulnerability, but it was also wrong of Scarlett to kiss back. He didn’t force anything upon her but he also should’ve known better than to let his feelings cloud his judgment. There’s no denying that they make breathtaking music together, but can they truly ever be in a relationship together? At the rate were going I can’t see how that’ll ever be possible again, but I do believe that the series is trying to make us see them as younger versions of Deacon and Rayna. And that’s not really helping because they aren’t being written in the same light. It saddens me however, to see that Scarlett’s with Caleb even though she doesn’t actually love him. If her love for him was true, at no point would she have allowed herself to get lost in the moment with Gunnar. However, she’s also been suffering through a lot because of her mom and what Gunnar should’ve done was tried to help her through that instead. He knows her well enough to be able to comfort her without being with her. That’s why the two of them used to be so great together — they were great at being there for one another and understanding each other.

At the moment, my heart’s breaking most for Daphne. I cannot imagine how she must feel and what’s essentially so upsetting is that since last season she’s felt out of place and we’ve yet to take the time to console her. If there’s one thing I’m looking forward to in the following weeks it’s for someone to really take the time to try to remind her of the fact that she’s not only special, but truly an irreplaceable part of the family. It’s going to hurt a lot when she learns that Teddy’s actually guilty so she’ll need all the support possible. Deacon may not be her biological father like he is Maddie’s, but it doesn’t change the fact that he’d do anything to insure her happiness and I’d really love to see the two of them bond more.

Oh my God, Juliette quit breaking all our hearts. I don’t even know where or how to begin with this storyline because so much has gone into it and yet it’s still up in the air. First things first, Hayden Panettiere’s breakdown felt so real it was almost frightening — kudos. Mostly what’s so frustrating is the fact that deep down Juliette knows she’s in trouble, she knows this life isn’t for her and I almost find it hard to believe that Rayna flying all the way over wasn’t enough to get her talking. I understand that we need drama and there’s limited time since this is a season premiere where we need to catch up on everyone’s lives, but it’s a bit unbelievable. However, this just makes me believe that when she does finally open up, there will be lots of tears. It’s so fitting and gorgeous that instead of writing to her with bitterness, Avery’s text says “we’re still here”. He’s angry and hurt and frightened, but at the end of the day, he knows Juliette’s heart. He knows that she loves their baby, and he knows that the girl inside is capable of being a wonderful mother. It’s great that he chooses to remind her of their presence in hopes that it’ll inspire something within her to come back to reality. I can’t wait to see how this storyline plays out, as I’ve said in previous reviews, it’s great that the series is dealing with postpartum depression because we’ve yet to see it on television. I just hope it’s done right. And judging by next week’s promo, there will be lots and lots of tears.

Rayna Jaymes continues to prove that she’s one of the greatest fictional characters on television right now. Her compassion never fails to floor me. It’s so remarkable to see a female woman who takes such good care of other females. She’s the motherly figure, the friend, the business partner, and the perfect consultant for everyone. Rayna doesn’t give up on people. It doesn’t matter how badly they screw her over because at the end of the day what she values above all things is spreading goodness. I cannot wait to see her grow this season, but I mostly cannot wait for Highway 65 to become the most successful record label. It was unfortunate to hear the radio essentially calling her out on the lack of successful artists, but that only tells me that she’ll bounce back stronger than ever. This is Rayna Jaymes we’re not talking about — queen of this country world at the moment. She knows music and she knows people, with her goodness and compassion, she can inspire only the greatest. Her time is coming and it’s going to be impeccable.

I’m actually surprised Beverly’s still alive and there’s a part of me that believes she won’t make it out of this. This is Nashville, and if there’s one thing that we can be certain of it’s that there will always be drama and heartbreak. Something has to come in between Deacon and Rayna because I doubt the series will give them their happiness just yet. If Beverly dies, it’ll send Deacon off to a place of regrets and heartbreaks thereby potentially causing a rift between him and Rayna. Eh, but here’s to hoping I’m actually wrong and creators are nice enough to let us revel in the happy couple for a bit longer.

Next up on the list of people breaking my heart, Deacon crushed it when he started sobbing for his sister. Oh my world there are no words. Charles Esten is so good at showcasing vulnerability and in that moment we’re truly able to see that even though there’s bad blood between them, no one will ever love his sister more than he will. He cares so deeply for her and it’s so clear that he wishes they could’ve had a better relationship. Beverly hasn’t been a great person. It’s just a fact, she’s been abusive and selfish, but at the end of the day, if a person works on bettering themselves, nothing’s impossible. I do hope I’m wrong about my theory because I hope that when she awakes, she takes the time to actually be a mother to Scarlett. I hope she takes the time to show just how grateful she is that her brother’s taken care of her daughter all these years. There’s a lot between this family and at the end of the day, if they work at it, they could reach a great, healthy place. I also need to take a moment to commend Scarlett for reminding Deacon that this isn’t his fault. Beverly made an honorable choice and lied during it, so it’s all on her. The point being however is that whether or not she felt guilty or truly wanted to do it, she owed it to Deacon. If it weren’t for him, Beverly’s little girl may have ended up in a place far worse.

What are your thoughts on the season premiere?!

@GissaneSophia

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