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Nashville - Can't Help but Wonder Where I'm Bound - Advance Preview: "Nashville Bound"

“Can’t Help but Wonder Where I’m Bound” is pretty much a continuation of most of the plotlines from “Beneath Still Waters.” Instead of focusing on Daphne’s feelings toward Deacon and Jessie dating, this episode gives viewers an opportunity to see some things from Jake’s perspective, which is both necessary and annoying. Viewers are also treated to the growing divide within the still untitled supergroup as Alannah continues getting most of the attention and Gunnar once again proves he’s not a friends with benefits type of guy. And instead of wasting time on Scarlett, this episode switches back to the drama of Maddie’s love life. Am I forgetting anything else, oh wait, the audience has to watch poor Avery search for answers, and when he finally does find them, it’s just awful to watch. Like this takes the cake for being the most Juliette thing she has done over the past two seasons. So even if you’re not properly enthused for this next episode, let’s dive in.

This episode continues the show’s quest to get Daphne and Jake onboard with their parents dating. Since Daphne had a breakthrough moment with Jessie last episode, it’s now Jake’s turn. With him and Daphne performing at school during an open house, it only makes sense that Deacon and Jessie would run into Brad. I mean, we all know Brad is a verbally abusive parent, but he still has to play the part of perfect father in public. So in case viewers forgot just how much of a [insert bad word] Brad really is, this episode serves as a reminder. Although I’m not really sure how viewers could forget given his underhanded actions with Alannah last episode. Since Brad continues to be anything but the father of the year, this allows Deacon to step up and be there for Jake. I had mentioned before during my review of “Where the Night Goes” that I thought Deacon’s throwaway line about always wanting a son was possibly foreshadowing of him having a child with Jessie. However, one commenter mentioned that it could have been alluding to Deacon acting as a parental figure for Jake, who desperately needs a positive male role model in his life. That interpretation certainly rings true in this episode as there’s a sweet moment between Deacon and Jake. It’s not as sentimental as Jessie’s conversation with Daphne, but it achieves sort of the same goal. Now it only seems like we need some sort of emotional moment between Jessie and Maddie, and Deacon and Jessie could enjoy some smooth sailing in their relationship. While the couple may still face obstacles in the future, getting their children onboard has been a major hurdle for them. Now that things seem to be moving into calmer waters, I’m not sure what will happen next. Obviously, it’s not going to be all rainbows and ponies, but I think they may have gotten through the worst of it. The only potential source of conflict could come from Brad, and since Jeffrey Nordling is a series regular, there’s a very good chance he’ll be the next challenge they face.

As for the supergroup, the band faces mostly the same problems this episode as they did in “Beneath Still Waters.” As Alannah’s stage presence grows, it intensifies the growing division within the band. Gunnar, as we’ve seen, is too infatuated with Alannah to really care if she’s outshining the guys, and Avery has more than enough to worry about with his non-wife not returning his phone calls and all, so that really only leaves Will who has the problem. I’m still not exactly clear what Will’s problem is with Alannah, and this episode doesn’t really address this question. He’s obviously jealous of all the attention she’s getting, but I still can’t figure out the why. Is it because he’s never been in a band before and doesn’t know how to share the spotlight? Is it because he assumed he’d be the star in this still untitled supergroup and now isn’t? Does he think Gunnar and Avery will try to replace him with Alannah? I don’t know about you, but I’m getting pretty tired of trying to psychoanalyze Will. If he’s having issues, he should just address them, but no one really seems capable of talking things out on this show except for Deacon and Jessie. As for who else could use a lesson in communication, let’s move on to Gunnar who spends most of this episode questioning his “relationship” with Alannah. While I was all for Gunnar to have a fun fling, it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen with Alannah, mainly because Gunnar is incapable of a no strings attached sort of relationship. Alannah was very clear from the beginning that this was just going to be a fun and casual thing, but as regular viewers know, Gunnar doesn’t do fun and casual. He may have agreed to those terms in the heat of the moment, but he isn’t wired that way. He devotes most of his time obsessing over where exactly he and Alannah stand and acting the way a jealous boyfriend would. He needs to either get it through his head that they’re not a couple or stop sleeping with her, because he can’t have it both ways.

Then we have Maddie who joins Jonah in Miami for a concert and ends up bonding Twig. So if you hate watching the burgeoning romance between the two Hollywood starlets, then you’re most definitely going to want to fast forward through those scenes. Jonah’s actions in this episode are pretty on par with the character viewers have come to know over the past few episodes. Maddie continues to be both mature in certain respects and way too forgiving or accepting in others. And viewers get to know Twig a little better. However, since we hardly knew anything about him to begin with, it’s not so much a shocking revelation as it is more insight into who he is. At the end of the episode, it’s pretty clear where the writers are planning on going with these three characters, and I have mixed feelings. On the one hand, I don’t really care, but on the other, well you’ll just have to wait and see. And then we have this subplot which made me angry beyond belief. Per the episode promo, viewers see Avery and Cadence awaiting Juliette’s return after spending two weeks in Bolivia, and the episode synopsis states that Avery visits Juliette, so it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to put two and two together. It’s just gotten really old to watch Juliette repeat the same mistakes season after season. Like this whole jetting off to Bolivia without telling your non-husband is essentially the same thing she did from the end of season three through season four. I get that the revelation of her being sexually abused by her “uncle” is traumatic, but how does abandoning Avery and Cadence once again help anyone? If she needed some time by herself to figure everything out, that would be OK, but just disappearing without so much as a note is just insulting to the character, who continues to devolve with every passing season. Since I’ve been pretty vague, I’ll leave you this tidbit: The last two to three minutes made me want to smash my television.

Some stray thoughts:
- Is anyone else getting Princess Leia vibes from Maddie’s hairstyle in the episode pictures, but like in a bad way?
- Is anyone else curious why Hayden Panettiere didn’t appear in last week’s episode after being so heavily featured in the first couple? Could the actress have only agreed to a reduced episode count?

So hit the comments to let me know your thoughts. Are you even planning on watching the episode? Are Deacon and Jessie out of the woods yet? Why does everyone on this show suck at communication? What is the most Juliette thing she does this time?


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