Nashville‘s great gift to viewers this week was pulling off the trick of being both unbearably sweet and kind of horrifying at the same time. In one key scene between sisters Maddie and Daphne, both of whom are experiencing love pangs – Maddie with age-inappropriate and bipolar musician Clay, and Daphne in the very early stages with classmate Flynn – Daphne wants to know if “it” hurts. Thankfully, the “it” she is referring to is falling in love. “Boys,” the older, wiser Maddie observes, “are clueless.”
In her graphic, yet right-on-target description of the sensation, Maddie concludes that falling in love is “like sewing someone’s skin on top of yours and you can never take it off without feeling like you’ve just been ripped apart.” Yikes – is this Silence of the Lambs? Actually, it’s just another example of how the pinpointed writing of Nashville’s “moments” can often outshine the show’s slower, more deliberate pace, especially this season and particularly this week, when not much else happened. Well, Damien kissed Scarlett and Gunnar fumed … and we yawned. We’ll take sweet and well-written over sudsy and melodramatic anytime.
While Deacon and Rayna are trying to recount their often tumultuous love story by writing a new duets album together, and have it all captured on film no less, tensions surface when they argue about the details of when and where their first kiss took place. “These are the facts, honey,” Rayna says. “The rest is just cheap whiskey.” Not sure what the hell that even means, but you don’t argue with Rayna. Unless you’re Maddie, that is – those two have turned family discord into an art form. A cake-burning mishap with Maddie, Daphne and Clay at home interrupts Rayna and Deacon’s make-out sesh behind a bowling alley. Maybe not the most romantic spot, but have you tried to get a hotel room in Nashville lately?
After the fire trucks leave, Clay geeks out over meeting Deacon, while Rayna and Maddie continue to squabble. And after going to their separate corners and thinking it all over, Rayna and Deacon come back together with songs each of them has written about their turbulent love affair. And, of course, even though the two songs capture different perspectives, they fit together perfectly into a beautiful tune called “My Favorite Hurricane.” Watching them sing it together is a heart-melting experience and you just know these two crazy kids have worked it all out, because nothing says true love like a song about a devastating weather event. But, hey, these are the facts … the rest is just cheap whiskey. Ok, now it makes sense.