TV Review: Nashville 2.01

Wednesday 12 February 2014 by

Nashville, TV, ABC,

Nashville: Series 2 Episode 1

The journey to the season 1 finale of Nashville took a lot of dramatic twists and turns and left us with a very dramatic cliffhanger. When we last saw our favourite Nashville residents Gunnar had proposed to Scarlett; Peggy told Teddy she was pregnant, Juliette won a CMA whilst dealing with the aftermath of her mother’s death, Deacon discovered he’s the father of Rayna’s eldest daughter causing him to well and truly fall off the wagon leading to a heated argument that landed himself and Rayna in a car crash. So when it came to the season 2 opening there were a lot of loose ends to tie up and that’s pretty much what the episode did for the most part.

The episode was still very enjoyable but I was certainly left with the feeling that it was finishing off the season 1 storylines in order to move on to the new stories they want to tell. There were things that were resolved in some very quick screen time and there were some expositional pieces of dialogue that bordered on clunky but on the whole it wasn’t too distracting as there was a hell of a lot to tie up. For me, the weakest moments were the flashbacks to Rayna and Deacon’s previous relationship, they just felt a little too afternoon TV movie for my liking but they definitely gave the viewer some good insight into Rayna’s decision to pick Teddy.

The standout of the episode was Charles Esten’s performance as Deacon which was both powerful and heartfelt giving a great insight into his inner turmoil. Hayden Panettiere’s portrayal of Juliette was also strong giving the bitchiness and manipulative self-promotion we’ve come to expect from Juliette with undertones of loneliness and the confirmation that she does truly care about Deacon rather than just viewing him as a pawn in her desire to change her image.

What the episode did well was subtly show the viewer the ways in which characters have changed, most notably Avery and Lamar. Gone from Avery’s eyes is the bitterness and jealousy and in its place is quiet humility, and Lamar (the excellent Powers Booth) spent his portion of the episode wearing slacks and a checked shirt – much more grandfatherly than the sharply tailored suits we’re used to seeing him in, suggesting he’s becoming more of a family man. However, with a strong indication that he may have been behind his wife’s (Rayna’s mother) death in a car accident I’m sure we can expect some serious drama to come.

While it may not have been the show’s best episode it certainly did a solid job as a season 1 epilogue/season 2 prologue and I’m sure we can expect another season of great drama and music to boot.

Rating, Review, Three

Nashville airs Thursdays at 10pm on More4 with episodes available weekly on 4OD

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