'Nashville Recap': Juliette Gets Her Groove, Rayna Makes a Pricey Move

One leading lady fights to revive her career while the other goes to battle for her lover's life

Jonathan Jackson ("Avery") and Hayden Panettiere ("Juliette") perform together on the latest episode of ABC's 'Nashville.' Credit: Mark Levine/ABC via Getty Images

This week on Nashville, there was seemingly no problem that neither money nor misogyny couldn't solve.

The episode opens with Rayna calling Deacon from her private jet, telling him that she's off to find a new distribution deal. What she's really up to is trying to convince Deacon's estranged sister, Beverly, to cough up a liver for her brother. Through a series of flashbacks we learn that Beverly and Deacon's singing partnership was derailed by Rayna coming into the picture and that Beverly's jealousy runs deep. We also learn that Rayna is probably the only woman outside New Jersey who ever looked good with big Eighties hair. By the end of the episode, Rayna is playing Ed McMahon at Beverly's door, handing her a check for $1 million in one last-ditch effort to convince her to help Deacon get his new liver.

Juliette continues to shirk her motherly duties and sneaks off to band rehearsal without Avery. Bucky, who ought to take up a career as a motivational speaker once his management days are over, basically tells Juliette she's got a long way to go to get her career back on track. He reminds her that she was nominated for one CMA award last year, which she didn't win; she hasn't given a concert in almost a year and wasn't even selling out arenas before she went and had a baby. Of course, she takes his tough-love advice well and thanks him for looking out for her while she's been focused on bonding with her baby, uh, what's-her-name. OK, not quite. She tells him the one thing he can do for her is go to hell.

Luke is cozied up with Jade St. John in her swanky California beach house, where she's planning a huge party. Her first mistake? (Other than Luke, that is): Inviting Jeff "Grumpy Cat" Fordham and Layla Grant. Even more awkward than those two on the guest list was Luke telling Jade he has never seen the Hugh Grant/Julia Roberts movie, Notting Hill, and that his favorite romantic movie is Shawshank Redemption. (We're guessing his favorite comedy is Schindler's List.) He later quotes Notting Hill and ends up being clumsily pushed by Jade into the pool. Forget Hugh and Julia, these two have all the chemistry of Richard Gere and Jodie Foster in Sommersby.

Back in Nashville, Deacon comes home to catch Maddie and Colt in the bedroom, scrambling to put their clothes back on. Colt runs out of the house screaming that it was all his idea. Juliette shows up and when Deacon tells her he found Maddie "with a boy," he says it like he found her there with something sinister and creepy. Like a serial killer. . . or Jeff. Juliette offers to talk to her because she can be something of a cautionary tale, since they both have several things in common: mainly that they are both really talented, they both have big dreams, and they both started in the business at a young age. To her credit, Maddie, who assures her they did not have sex, doesn't run away from the house screaming like a little girl (or Colt), at the prospect of being anything like Juliette. She actually compliments her mommy skills. Juliette tells Deacon that Maddie and Colt didn't actually do the deed. He then returns the favor by telling Juliette he has cancer. That bad news aside, Juliette decides it's time to give her career a Beatlesque boost by staging a rooftop concert in Nashville. The stunt works and it seems she is once again back on track and, literally, on top of the world. She and Avery are soon staging a hot and heavy remake of the old Aerosmith hit, "Love in an Elevator."

At Jade's oddly-themed party, which comes off like a cross between The Little Mermaid and Caligula, Layla meets a hot actor boy whose name sounds like one of those TV lawyers: Sullivan Fitzgerald. "Sullivan Fitzgerald: We fight for your rights!" All the while, Grumpy Cat Jeff is rolling his eyes, especially when Layla hands him her phone so he can take a picture of her with actor boy. Jade cautions her not to send the photo to social media, but Grumpy Cat decides he's had enough of Layla's drunken shenanigans and tweets the photo while she's not looking.

Luke is heading back to Nashville to seriously discipline his horny son, but before he goes, he breaks things off with Jade because "he's a cowboy from Kentucky and she's Jade St. John." When Cowboy Luke gets back to his son, instead of reading him the riot act, he basically tells him something along the lines of "boys will be boys." Deacon, however, would probably counter with "boys can also be eunuchs."

Gunnar and Scarlett are back to being a duo thanks to Avery's defection from the Triple X's, but Gunnar's world is rocked once again by his ex, Kylie, whose son, Micah was once Gunnar's son but is actually his nephew, since we now know that Kylie cheated on Gunnar with his late brother, Jason. Kylie reveals, however, that she was actually raped by Jason. Scarlett, meanwhile, has to go to a party at a posh country club with Caleb, or as ABC should start billing him, the new-and-improved Dr. McDreamy. (Too soon?) Gunnar and Scarlett soon start sniping at each other, as usual. Thankfully, they still sound so damn good when they're singing together that we can almost overlook that they're becoming as tiresome as the whole Teddy and Natasha thing. Almost.

Speaking of which, Natasha calls Teddy to tell him she's still in Nashville. She confesses that she was wearing the wire and the feds know where Teddy got the money. She warns him that they are on their way to get him. Teddy digs out his passport then spends some time with his daughters, even giving them matching heart necklaces before he takes off. At his office, he has prepared letters for Rayna, Maddie and Daphne, but before he can leave, his old pal, Dash, from the US attorney's office, who was also the best man at his wedding, shows up to remind Teddy about how he got into this whole mess in the first place (stumbling into an investigation into a prostitution ring, blackmailing a city official, getting himself out of it all by absconding with city funds). Instead of arresting him, however, he's prepared to get the mayor out of it entirely. He just needs him to do something for him first.

We're sort of hoping it's sending Grumpy Cat Jeff to "the vet" to "get fixed."