“Nashville” Season 3 episode 2 picked up where the dramatic season premiere left off. The press was going crazy about Rayna (Connie Britton) and Luke’s (Will Chase) engagement, but Deacon (Charles Esten) and Maddie (Lennon Stella) weren’t as happy about the news. Meanwhile, Juliette (Hayden Panettiere) was a little too wrapped up in her pregnancy and abortion appointment to notice her former rival’s success.
Episode 2, "How Far Down Can I Go," focused on Deacon dealing with Rayna's choice to get engaged to Luke. Scarlett (Clare Bowen) found him sitting on the floor of his house staring out the window. He didn’t want to talk much about the decision, but he had to get up to see Maddie.
Deacon brought Maddie to a furniture store to get her a dresser for his house, but she was being very cranky. She was mad that Rayna was marrying Luke and that Deacon was going on tour. Deacon wanted her to stop taking her anger out on him.
“My mom is marrying Luke because you’re too pathetic to do anything about it … you didn’t fight hard enough,” she said.
“I asked your mother to marry me!” Deacon said. “Is that hard enough? She said no, so the fantasy is over.”
Maddie was heartbroken that her mom turned down Deacon’s proposal. Deacon said the bright side was that Luke probably wouldn’t still want him in the band. However, he might’ve made that promise too soon. Luke wasn’t about to let Deacon out of his contract. The tour wasn’t personal for Luke; it was business.
Gunnar (Sam Palladio) wasn’t too worried about business. Songwriting had been paying well enough for Gunnar to buy a new house, and he invited Zoe (Chaley Rose) to move in. She wasn’t exactly ready to take that step. Zoe asked Avery (Jonathan Jackson) about their recent road trip and Gunnar and Scarlett’s relationship. Avery didn’t have anything to say since he was drunk the whole time and told her to talk to Scarlett.
Scarlett wanted to talk to Zoe after some missed calls, but she was asleep at Gunnar’s house. Instead of waking her up, Gunnar took Scarlett into his home studio, and the two worked on a song together. When Gunnar told Scarlett that both of their names would be on the song, Scarlett freaked out. She wasn’t ready to be back in the music industry.
Zoe saw them through the window, and she looked hurt that the two were together. Her day only got worse when she went to work. Zoe had a new gig as Juliette’s backup singer, but she was having trouble with the choreography. Her boss threatened to fire her if she couldn't figure out the moves soon. She went home and decided that she would move in with Gunnar.
Scarlett apologized to Gunnar the next day for running out on him. She wasn’t ready to write with someone else when she was still finding her own voice. However she thanked him for bringing her back to town.
Rayna (Connie Britton) bought an official office space for Highway 65 Records, but her interviewer didn’t seem interested in the label or the album. He wanted to get the scoop on her new relationship with Luke. That made Rayna pretty uncomfortable.
Rayna met up with Tandy (Judith Hoag) at their father’s house. They still hadn’t cleared their father’s belongings out of the house since his death and they had to divide up anything they wanted to hold on to. Rayna only wanted a few things that belonged to her mother. She didn’t feel the need to take any mementos to remember her father, the man who killed her mother. Their sister bonding session was cut short when Rayna received the call that her album was knocked down to number 2 on the charts.
Rayna was angry about record sales. The numbers were too low compared to previous albums, but her sister and manager Bucky (David Alford) explained that those were good numbers in today’s industry. Bucky said he could give her a bump by setting up more interviews, but she would have to talk about her personal life. That was something that didn’t sit well with Rayna.
Rayna and Luke talked about money when they visited her father’s estate. He didn’t grow up with money on a farm, and she grew up wealthy. Rayna argued that he had a great family, and Luke said he heard her father was a great man. Rayna told him that he wasn’t the best guy. She ended up taking her first album from his house. He had it hanging up in his closet, which surprised her. She admitted that she inherited his ambition. Maybe she didn't hate everything from her father.
Despite all the work being put into promoting her album and the insanity of her personal life, Rayna still wanted to add 40 more tour dates. It meant that her and her daughters’ lives would be a little crazy for the next year. Maddie wasn’t thrilled, but she assumed that she would get to live with Deacon for a portion of the tour. Maddie was heartbroken when she heard that Deacon was still going out on tour.
Tandy was also heading out of town, but her move was a little more permanent -- she decided to leave Nashville. She wanted to work for a friend’s nonprofit in San Francisco. Rayna was sad to see her sister go but understood her decision.
Rayna finally gave in to pressure from the media on “Good Morning America.” The talk show surprised her with an appearance from Luke Bryan and they asked her about Luke’s proposal. Rayna finally gushed a little bit about her new fiancé, but she didn’t reveal too many personal details.
Will (Chris Carmack) was still hiding his own personal details, and his wife wasn’t happy about it. He received the great news that he bumped Rayna’s album down the charts. However, Layla (Aubrey Peebles) was angry that her career wasn’t going so well, and she demanded Will help her. He had the number one country album, so he should be able to pull some strings with Jeff (Oliver Hudson).
Jeff was in hot water with his bosses. Since taking over the label, he lost Rayna and Juliette. The higher ups at Edgehill wondered if Jeff had a problem with women. Jeff had to give in when Will asked him to give Layla some support. He got Layla an audition for the Patsy Cline biopic.
Jeff ran into rising country star Sadie Stone (Laura Benanti) at Layla’s audition, and he wanted to take her from her current label. Layla realized that he wouldn’t push for her, but she could force Will to help her. She decided that she owned Will and was going on tour with him.
“I hate you. I do not forgive you, and I’m not going to let you get in the way of what I want,” Layla said.
The Bluebird Café had a new waitress Nadine (Erin Naifeh), and she definitely took a liking to Avery. However he wasn’t exactly over Juliette (Hayden Panetierre). When the country star dropped his stuff off, the two got into a yelling match. Juliette admitted that she made mistakes, but she didn’t think he was without blame.
Back at the Blubird, Nadine said that it would be hard for her to compete with Juliette. “No it isn’t,” Avery said before he kissed Nadine.
Juliette couldn’t even listen to the song she wrote with Avery, though it was blowing up on country radio. She forced her assistant to turn off the radio while her stylist (Amanda Valentine from “Project Runway”) was visiting. She was supposed to be picking out a new tour wardrobe, but she wanted an outfit to convince movie producers that she could play Patsy Cline. A phone call interrupted the styling session, and a doctor told Juliette that she was definitely pregnant.
The singer went into her audition for the Patsy Cline biopic in full costume and makeup. The producers were definitely impressed with her, but she wasn’t happy to run into Jeff and Layla after her audition. Jeff called her an amateur for dressing up for the part and told her that she’d gained weight.
At her doctor’s appointment, Juliette was all set to get an abortion. She was sure she didn't want Jeff's baby. By law, the doctor was required to tell her how far along she was. Juliette said she knew it had been four weeks (when she slept with Jeff), but the doctor said that she was actually about eight weeks along.
“Oh my god. It’s not Jeff’s,” Juliette said as a tear rolled down her face.
“Nashville” Season 3 airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EDT on ABC. How do you think Avery will react to being a father? Sound off in the comments section below!