Juliette shares her secrets with the world while Rayna and Luke start what looks to be a not-so-healthy competition over the Country Music Awards.
Credit: Mark Levine/ABC
S3 E6
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Nashville has always been extremely clever with its episode titles. They always feel like the start of a country song filled with woe and clearly that’s the point considering the series’ subject matter. Wednesday night’s title was no different; in fact it might be the most aptly named for all of season 3 so far. “Nobody Said It Was Going To Be Easy” perfectly described Juliette and Avery’s struggle to accept their roles as parents together, Gunnar’s need to get to know his son, Rayna and Luke’s journey toward individual success (which most certainly will lead to tension in their relationship), and pretty much every other smaller story line we were shown.

As per usual it seems with season 3 so far, the best storyline arguably came from Juliette’s pregnancy and how it continues to affect not just herself but everyone in her life. But surprisingly, many of the other characters’ stories are finally getting some movement toward the interesting. To sum up some of the plots that are only just now starting to get some traction: Teddy’s lovely female interest from last week’s episode was a paid escort by Jeff, who tells the Nashville mayor about his mistress in the night. Teddy obviously freaks out and pouts at Jeff. But he later picks up the phone to call Natasha back, presumably for seconds of the talking and the hanky panky, which Jeff described as playing Marco Polo naked in the water. Obviously this relationship will crash and burn when everyone finds out. And everyone will find out simply because of Teddy’s politician status. Hasn’t he learned anything from Eliot Spitzer, Mark Allen, Barney Frank, David Vitter… alright let’s not go any further at the risk of getting depression over the state of politics in this country.

Maddie decided that her rebellious, i.e. obnoxious, teenager phase would include throwing a rager with the help of soon-to-be stepbrother Colt, with whom she later shared a kiss. Thankfully for everyone, Colt stopped Maddie’s kiss and the cops arrive to stop Maddie’s party. Rayna and Teddy decide that the girls need a nanny for constant supervision. Can’t see that ending well either, but, hey, the show had to eventually use the obvious nanny plotline, right?

Scarlett attempted to learn more about her Blues-singing, former family having homeless friend Terry by getting him a job to clean out Deacon’s gutters while he was away and washing Terry’s clothes for him and cooking him dinner in repayment. When Scarlett went poking around Terry’s past, the poor man freaked out and left Scarlett and his normal resting spot behind the writing studio.

Layla continues to burrow further and further below rock bottom by drinking away her anger toward Will (doesn’t work) and her frustration toward her career and personal life (also doesn’t work). Despite having gnarly bruises on his face and going through constant personal struggles, Will is still the more mature and stable adult in their relationship.

And finally in the last small plotline of the evening, as much as many of you Nashville fans hate Pam (and my goodness do you really hate her), she still seems to be doing Deacon a lot of good. She’s the only person who helped the man realize that he still loves playing music. Hell, she even inspired him to pick up his guitar and write a catchy (if not slightly repetitive) song that actually showed some joy on that sourpuss face. Alright, time for the good stuff.

NEXT: Rayna doubts her achievements thanks to “Ruke”

ABC really hit the cross-promotion hard on Wednesday night when Nashville‘s stars all sat down to eagerly await the list of the Country Music Awards nominations! If you weren’t smacked over the head by the amount of times the series mentioned the CMA’s on Wednesday, those previews must have done it. Sadie and Will both get Best Newcomer nods while Luke earns five nominations and Rayna gets a grand total of six. Juliette gets one as well, but it’s for co-writing with Avery.

The ABC newscasters make a comment about Rayna and Luke’s success stemming from their celebrity couple status—which really (and rightly) irks Rayna. She worked hard emotionally, physically, and monetarily to start her own label and she can’t enjoy the success because the whole world believes she’s only getting recognition for being engaged to Luke. Rayna takes the news hard, and Luke doesn’t, but he does give her advice: If you want to win awards, you have to campaign.

Rayna’s campaign includes taking on a performance on Dancing with the Stars (cross-promotion no. 2) of a new bonus single despite the fact that the gig was originally offered to both her and Luke and despite the tiny fact that she doesn’t actually have a bonus single. No worries! It can’t be that hard to write an amazing song, right? Rayna once recorded an amazing song while drunk on whiskey with Liam McGuinness, so anything is possible.

Luke isn’t too pleased with this turn of events and Ray assures him that she’s not bumping him or trying to outdo him for competition sake; she just wants both of them to rightfully earn their achievements as individuals because they deserve it and not because they’re linked as an item. Luke says that everything will be fine as long as they have each other’s backs. That couldn’t be more obviously foreboding if a black cat ran across the screen while both Rayna and Luke simultaneously broke mirrors symbolizing the coming bad luck in their relationship.

Meanwhile Gunnar is desperately trying to get to know his son before Kylie decides to pack up and move away to Oklahoma for her new internet beau. She allows Micah to spend the night with Gunnar where he teaches the young boy (whom some fans believe is actually Jason’s son and not Gunnar’s… I could believe that) how to play the drums. He’s pretty terrible, but it’s adorable to watch. Gunnar finally convinces Kylie to stay and let Gunnar be a part of the kid’s life on the day she was to move away. Gunnar gives Kylie a thank you hug and Micah steps out from behind them right as Zoey comes home from Juliette’s now canceled tour. Awkward…

Now, the last we saw Juliette she had collapsed backstage at her concert. We find out immediately that she suffered a pulmonary embolism thanks to a blood clot. Zoey calls Avery to tell him the news, and he drives all night. Is it to see her or for the baby she later asks him. I don’t think he has an answer for that complicated question. Noah shows up right as Avery and Juliette are trying to talk things out (mainly what was up with that text message), and Avery takes his appearance as a sign that Juliette is moving on without him.

After learning that she has to cancel her tour thanks to her health scare, Juliette starts making some tough choices. First, she cancels her tour (and relishes at the chance to fire Zoey for stealing her spotlight). Then she confronts Avery and tells him that he has one of two options: She’s going to raise the baby with Avery all in or without him completely. Avery tells her later that he picks neither option. He tells her that it is not her decision whether Avery is the baby’s father. But he does want to be there every step of the way. He just can’t do it while in a relationship with Juliette because he still doesn’t trust her. And that makes sense. These two have done nothing but cut each other down since Juliette’s betrayal. It might be good to let them find their way back to each other with time and not just because they’re raising a baby together.

At the end of the episode, Juliette announces to the press, in an extremely quick press conference, that she is pregnant, her tour is cancelled, she will finish the movie, and that Avery is the father. Then she walks away with as much swagger as her fellow ABC lady of power Olivia Pope. If pregnant Juliette is going to be this cool all the time, I’m ready for more.

Episode Recaps

Legendary music icon Rayna Jaymes struggles to maintain her place in the spotlight while dealing with the ambitious rising pop vixen Juliette Barnes.
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