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‘Nashville' finale recap: Rayna’s proposals, Will’s announcement, Juliette’s woe

Deacon watches Rayna perform on 'Nashville'
Photo by Youtube (Screen Capture)

The season 2 finale of “Nashville” was emotional, jaw-dropping and left many unanswered questions hanging in the balance. On May 14, The Hollywood Reporter said that was exactly what show creator Callie Khouri intended to do. We’ll be discussing the show so if you haven’t watched “On the Other Hand,” know that there are spoilers ahead.

The hour saw 2 proposals, 2 potential breakups and Will coming out to his wife. Father-daughter turmoil and one has-been starlet having a change of heart about leaving town rounded out the finale. Let’s take it character by character.

Juliette blows a fuse. Her relationship with Avery is on the line.

Juliette was reeling from the attempted blackmail by Jeff Fordham over their ill-advised tryst. If she didn’t find a way out of her contract with Rayna at Highway 65 and return to Edgehill Records, Jeff was going to make sure Avery found out about it.

She tried to get Rayna to let her go but Rayna wasn’t budging. Then Juliette showed up at Deacon’s sobriety center drunk. She didn’t get to the stage but Rayna sees her and goes looking for her afterward. Rayna holds Juliette’s hair while she pukes, as any BFF would do and Juliette unloads her problem on Rayna. Rayna says they are going to put on a live concert, blow the doors off Jeff and make Highway 65 a success. She also tells her to put on her big girl panties and tell Avery the truth regardless of the consequences.

Juliette goes home to wait for Avery with intentions of telling him about Jeff but he has learned the truth from Gunnar and Zoey. She pleads with him to stay but he leaves her over it. Later, he returns because he wants to know why she did it. She tearfully talks about her childhood and never feeling loved by anyone. She ends it with ‘I don’t deserve you’ as the music swells. We are left with her sobbing on the sofa and Avery standing there, no decision spoken.

Will longs for a life in the open. Gunnar can’t be the only person he can be himself with.

Will and Layla are still doing their reality show thing and the pressure of his album launch is making him a nervous wreck. Jeff is hell-bent on showing up Rayna and is using Will to do it, adding even more pressure to the poor guy. Their albums come out the same day and record sales are everything. His career is riding on his album outselling Rayna’s. He talks this over with Gunnar who says he can’t be the only one Will can have a real relationship with. It isn’t normal.

Will goes home to a Layla who is growing increasingly concerned over his behavior. Looking at all the cameras, he takes her into the bedroom where they will have some privacy. She asks what’s wrong and he says, “I’m gay.” Then he hugs her tightly and sobs because he knows how much this will hurt her. Her expression is one of complete shock. The camera pans around to a camera hidden in a wall clock and guess what? It’s on.

Rayna battles tooth and nail for her record launch. She also gets 2 proposals.

After getting bumped for an appearance on “Good Morning America” by Jeff who muscled Will into the spot, Rayna throws together an impromptu concert for that night featuring herself, Juliette and Luke. She also snakes a gift card deal away from Will that will help boost her record sales and tank his. She doesn’t like playing dirty but she’s got everything riding on this and she isn’t about to lose to Jeff.

At the concert, Rayna sings with Juliette first, then with Luke. After their duet, Luke drops to one knee and produces a 7-carat ring. Rayna puts it on, grins like the Cheshire cat and says yes much to the dismay of Teddy, Deacon, Maddie and Daphne who are watching in the crowd. The crowd loves it, though.

Later that night, Deacon shows up unexpectedly at Rayna’s house. He wants to say he’s there to congratulate her but he can’t because he’s still in love with her. No matter how hard he tries to move on, he’s in love with her. He tells her he has finally become the man she always wanted him to be. He’s ready to be that man for her, to be a husband and a father. He kisses her and she doesn’t exactly push him away. He gives her a ring too and tells her to think about it before she answers.

Maddie wants a music career. Rayna and Deacon both told her she’d have to wait. Maddie wants Deacon and Rayna to get back together, too. She gives each of them a framed photo of their little family performing at the soldier’s concert from last week. She’s cold to Teddy and rejecting him as usual. When Luke proposes and her mom accepts, Maddie looks stricken.

Avery is all apologetic to Juliette for neglecting her recently. Then he finds out about Jeff and goes off on Juliette, telling her she doesn’t know what it means to love someone. He explains that you’d rather die than hurt that person. He storms out, then goes home and gets drunk. Scarlett turns up to say goodbye and finds him drunk in his boxer shorts. Sensing trouble, she goads him into talking and tells him he and Juliette were good for each other. Later he goes back to Juliette’s to find out why she cheated on him.

Scarlett also pays a call on Gunnar. He sings her a song he wrote for her, one Zoey knows about it. The song is all about her gift and how she doesn’t have the right to throw it away. He tells her that he doesn’t think she should leave town. By the end of the episode, it appears Scarlett is rethinking things.

“On the Other Hand” was the season 2 finale of “Nashville” and it left us hungry for more. It’s a good thing ABC picked up the country music drama for a third year. It will be back with new episodes in the fall.

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