‘Nashville’ Season 3, Episode 17 – Recap & Discussion Post!

Welcome back to Nashville! We begin this week’s episode with Sadie and Luke interviewing separately with a police detective, cutting between each of their sessions to establish the chronology of events leading up to Sadie shooting Abusive Ex Pete. Just as we get to the part about the shooting itself, Sadie asks to make a phone call.

Over to Casa Jaymes, where Maddie and Daphne are asleep on the couch and Rayna’s making coffee when Deacon arrives downstairs. Officially coupled up now, Rayna and Deacon chat about the day ahead (she’s throwing Juliette’s baby shower today) and about the difficult conversation they had with the girls last night revealing Deacon’s illness. They are grateful to be able to face this together. A call from Sadie interrupts, and Rayna is off to police station, with plans to bring her lawyer.

Avery is loading gear when Juliette calls asking if he got her texts about the baby name. I guess we’re back to frantic/crazy Juliette this week, because Avery observes that she’s texted 14 times. She has baby name ideas, and we’re treated to a comic runthrough of all the baby name factors she’s considering against the lavish backdrop of baby girl-themed party decorations. Meanwhile, Avery is a little distracted and asks if they can talk about this later. Juliette snaps and hangs up on him, and P.A. Emily emerges from the comfy guest room to find Juliette crumpling the pale pink doilies that were a part of the place setting.

Meanwhile Gunnar and Avery continue to wait for Scarlett, with Avery guessing that things didn’t go Gunnar’s way last night. At first, Gunnar doesn’t want to talk about it, but he quickly starts babbling about how he can’t believe she went off somewhere without telling them and how she could be dead in a ditch when a giddy Scarlett arrives via cab. Gunnar cuts off her explanation with a curt reminder that they have a schedule to keep.

A slightly red-eyed Teddy is washing his face and reflecting on the man he’s become when Natasha calls him from a prepaid cell phone (that still somehow registers as “Blocked” on his cell phone?). She is panicking and wants the getaway money fast.

Rayna arrives at the back entrance of the police station with her lawyer in tow (hordes of press await outside the front of the station), just as Luke emerges with the police detective. The police detective tries to assert his authority by noting this entrance is for authorized personnel only, but lets the lawyer and Rayna through. The detective and the lawyer go in first, leaving Luke to tell Rayna that the detective is a bit of a jackass. Rayna is surprised to see Luke there, but Luke is in no mood to answer questions about why he was (kind of) with Sadie when the shooting happened.

Deacon and the girls are having breakfast at the diner, but Maddie is in no mood to eat or talk. Daphne starts to ask questions about what cancer feels like, and when Deacon tries to answer, Maddie is over discussing that, or anything. Deacon tries to reason with her, and she just gets up to go to the car.

We rejoin the Triple Xes on the bus, as Scarlett suddenly remembers she forgot to pack Caleb’s flowers. Gunnar is definitely all broken up about that. Avery suggests they had “My Song” to their set list now, and Scarlett’s game. Gunnar gives his unenthusiastic assent and pretends his full attention is on the television. But then suddenly everybody’s full attention is on the television, with local news reporting that Sadie Stone has shot and killed Pete. Avery is alarmed, and goes off to call somebody. Scarlett asks Gunnar if he’s OK, and Gunnar rejects her friendly overture.

Juliette and P.A. Emily are running through RSVPs for her guest list, and none of the invited real life A-listers can come. Juliette is not happy. Manager Glenn arrives with a gift, and Juliette is happy to see him. Well, at least until he informs her that Rayna can’t come either, despite hosting the baby shower. Juliette is horrendously offended when Manager Glenn tells her why…she can’t believe Sadie Stone would shoot her husband on the day of her baby shower! LOLZ.

Albert delivers a manila envelope full of dirt on Nashville’s finance director to Teddy. Teddy asks Albert if he ever feels bad about what he does. Albert says he just digs up information, it’s up to Teddy what he does with it. Nice. Albert tells Teddy what we’re all thinking about his current direction – that he’s reminding him of Lamar. Just as Teddy starts to feel even worse about himself, Maddie calls him begging for him to come pick her up. Teddy tries to tell her he’s tied up, but relents. Albert snarks that his family must be so proud.

Sadie is alone in a interrogation room when she discovers Pete’s blood on her shirt and literally on her hands. She panics and starts to cry when the lawyer comes in and tells her she can go home because the police aren’t holding her. Sadie exits the room and embraces Rayna when she sees her. Rayna tells Sadie to come stay with her for the timebeing, because the press is all over. As they’re leaving, the police detective reminds them this is an open investigation with charges pending, because Sadie was in possession of an unregistered weapon that resulted in a man’s death. He suggests Sadie not leave town anytime soon. Sadie starts to panic again, but Rayna takes her away.

Avery is on the bus scrolling through some hilarious texts with baby name proposals when Scarlett comes over. She asks if he’s found out anything about Sadie, and he tells her that apparently Rayna and her lawyers are taking care of it. He figures it has to be self-defense. Scarlett agrees, and then takes the opportunity to ask if he’s noticed anything going on with Gunnar, because he’s been acting like she did something wrong. Avery suggests that she take it up directly with Gunnar, and begs out of being in the middle on the grounds that he may wind up with a daughter named “Sparkle” if he doesn’t deal with Juliette’s texts. Scarlett giggles, and when he asks if she wants to help with names, she’s all in.

Sadie is wondering aloud whether she’ll be able to finish her album while in prison, and Rayna is trying to reassure her. Rayna does wish she’d known how scared Sadie was, because they could have hired security or done something more legal than purchasing an unregistered weapon. Sadie sobs that she just wanted to do something to make her feel like she had a little more control, but she’d never intended to use it. She’s freaked out because there were no witnesses. When Rayna asks about whether Luke could have seen anything, Sadie is sure he couldn’t have, because he was parked on another floor.

Back to comedy at Juliette’s place, where P.A. Emily and Manager Glenn can only watch in horror as Juliette throws a multi-layered cake into the mirror because she doesn’t matter enough to people. Her rampage continues through other decorations, and finally, she orders P.A. Emily and Manager Glenn to cancel the party. When Manager Glenn protests about a People magazne photographer being on the way, she is unmoved.

Maddie won’t open the door for Deacon, and an amused Daphne informs Deacon that his “I’m going to count to 3” tactic only works on little kids. She also tells him Teddy’s arrived, so Deacon goes out to handle that. The 2 dads start with their usual posturing and bickering when Deacon spits out to Teddy that he has cancer. Teddy’s demeanor immediately softens. He offers his sympathies and tells Deacon that he learned the hard way: the harder he pushes, the more Maddie’ll pull away. Deacon steps aside to let Teddy through.

Luke sends the latest in a series of worried texts to Sadie from the studio when Bucky walks in. They chat about what each is doing there…Luke had a breakthrough on a song (thanks to Sadie) and he was trying to follow up on that but is distracted, while Bucky’s there to watch Ron Pope, who has amassed a lot of internet buzz, cut a demo. Bucky knows Rayna’s not big on internet acts but he wants to do his job as A&R guy while Rayna’s tied up. Luke takes the opportunity to ask about Sadie, and Bucky says Rayna and the lawyers are handling it. Bucky adds that it couldn’t have been easy on Luke being there. When he excuses himself, Luke asks if he can tag along to the Ron Pope session, because he could use a distraction.

Sadie, meanwhile, tried to take a nap but is haunted by the memories of her final confrontation with Abusive Ex Pete.

When we return from commercial, we go straight into the Ron Pope session. He has a great soulful ache in his voice, and Luke and Bucky are understandably impressed. Luke tells Bucky he may have to fight him for Pope. Bucky chuckles that as good as Pope is, he’s a little off-brand for Highway 65. Luke asks if Bucky were running A&R for Wheelin’ Dealin’ Records, would he sign Pope. Bucky says he absolutely would, if he were. Yea, we’re totally setting up a potential poach/detection by Bucky here. I like the idea of Rayna vs. Luke in the business, actually. Luke would be a considerably less cartoonish adversary than Jeff was. Ron Pope emerges from his session and is thrilled and surprised to see Luke there. Luke immediately makes him a label deal offer, and after checking with Bucky that it’s OK, Ron immediately agrees (no discussion of terms or anything?). As Luke and Bucky walk out, Bucky says he’s surprised Luke made the offer on the spot. Luke says he hates to miss out on a good thing when it comes along.

Check out video of Ron Pope singing “Big Bad Love,” written by Andrew Combs:

Maddie lets Teddy into her room and says she’s ready to go. But Teddy closes the door behind him and says they need to talk. Maddie figures out that he and Deacon talked, and is immediately defensive. Teddy is great here, though, and says that Deacon just told him that she’s sad…for him. That’s enough to get Maddie to open up and ask rhetorically if she’s supposed to share her worst fears about what will happen to Deacon with Deacon. Teddy says if that’s what she’s thinking, then yes, because he’s probably having those same fears. Maddie hugs Teddy tight and begs him not to get sick until he’s really, really old. Teddy promises he’s not going anywhere. Which either means that he is totally going somewhere (like jail) or this scene is supposed to show us why he goes ahead with the blackmail scheme to get Natasha her money.

Sadie is forlornly watching a local news report about her confrontation with Pete and ignoring texts from Luke when her phone rings. This time she picks up, and it’s the detective. We don’t hear what he’s saying, but she says she understands, and hangs up, crying. Since it’s not her lawyer calling, she’s probably not being charged in the matter of Pete’s death, right?

We return to the bus, and now it’s Gunnar who wants to talk to Avery about what he and Scarlett were discussing. Avery admits they did talk about him, but tells Gunnar what he told Scarlett – to work things out directly with Scarlett instead of putting him in the middle. He also tells Gunnar that he’s probably out a producer’s gig so he needs this band to work.

Rayna arrives at Juliette’s to apologize and is met with snideness, which leads to an epic argument about Juliette’s sense of entitlement (where Juliette gets in a fun line about Rayna’s perfect hair), which of course leads to Juliette’s water breaking. Because of course Rayna has to be there for that too.

Gunnar finally goes over to Scarlett to talk. He apologizes for being a jerk and Scarlett accepts, but their discussion quickly goes downhill when Gunnar says she’s focusing too much on her new doctor boyfriend and not enough on their band. He lays into her for sleeping with the doctor on the 2nd date, prompting Scarlett correctly retort that’s none of his business and then point out he’s not stranger to inappropriate relationships. What now? Oh, Zoe, her best friend. Gunnar says that was Scarlett’s fault, because she turned down his marriage proposal. She says she had to because he was so torn up about Jason, he needed time to figure himself out. Gunnar says she wasn’t there for him, and Scarlett reveals she was waiting for him to come back to her for the right reasons, but he didn’t and so she moved on. Just as that starts to sink in for Gunnar, Scarlett is thrown into his arms when the bus suddenly brakes. A wide-eyed, excited and kind of panicked Avery’s learned that Juliette is about to have a baby, so he’s getting off the bus, and he directs Scarlett and Gunnar to work their issues with each other out between here and Louisville, because they’ve got a show to do and it’s going to be without him.

Teddy is leaving Deacon’s home (without Maddie and Daphne) when Natasha walks up to him. He’s annoyed, but she promises she hasn’t been followed. Their conversation is a rehash of all the other ones they’ve had lately – she wants the money now, and he’s working on it.

Rayna is now at the hospital, and leaves a message for Deacon explaining why. Juliette is completely in a tizz about having this baby alone. Rayna reminds her to breath.

Daphne and Deacon are cooking together when Maddie walks up. Daphne is old enough now to know they need a minute, so she excuses herself. Maddie apologizes for hiding in Scarlett’s room all day. Deacon tells her she doesn’t have to apologize. Maddie finally talks – saying this is a lot, and she’s just angry at reality. Deacon says he is too, and he tells her she should feel free to express that however she’d like, just don’t shut him out. Maddie understands. No hug just yet.

Gunnar and Scarlett are being introduced in Louisville, but Scarlett isn’t speaking to Gunnar. He’s brought the band up to speed. As they take the stage, Scarlett informs the crowd why they’re without Avery tonight, and Gunnar talks about their history as a duo. He calls an audible and launches into the sultry “Longer,” written in real life by Amy Davidson, and meant to be a message to Scarlett. As Scarlett takes over for the 2nd verse, we can see them connecting through the lyrics.

To DOWNLOAD “Longer,” written by Andrea Davidson and performed by Clare Bowen and Sam Palladio, click HERE!

BONUS: Check out singer/songwriter Andrea Davidson’s version of the song here:

As they finish, we cut back over to Juliette, who is in full labor as Rayna tries to talk her through it. Avery arrives just in time, which lets Rayna back off. He takes Juliette’s hand, and promises there’s nowhere he’d rather be than with his 2 girls. She squeezes his hand tightly as another contraction takes place, and we don’t see him wince.

When we return from commercial, Juliette and Avery are holding a little baby in their arms, and Juliette mouths thanks to Rayna, who quietly excuses herself. As she exits Juliette’s room at the hospital, Sadie calls from her car (?) to tell Rayna that the District Attorney will not be filing charges and they bumped the illegal weapons charge down to a misdemeanor. Rayna is suitably relieved and encourages Sadie by saying she can finally start putting this all behind her. Sadie is really glad to hear Rayna say that, because she needs to leave, she needs to go back home to Virginia and think about what happened and what she’s done. Rayna wants to talk about this in person at home, but Sadie tells Rayna she’s already left and they both know Rayna would convince her to stay. But Sadie is resolute – she needs to “get right” with herself, and she needs to do this on her own. She thanks Rayna for everything. A disappointed Rayna assures Sadie that she’ll still be here when Sadie returns, and thanks her too. So no more Laura Benanti for now? :(

Teddy is looking through those incriminating photos of his finance director when said finance director comes in full of righteous bluster about wanting no part in Teddy’s discretionary funds scheme. But Teddy informs him of those photos, which show the finance director with another woman and a child – his child. Teddy channels his best Lamar when he suggests to the finance director that sometimes they have to protect their families from the mistakes they’ve made. Teddy reminds Finance Director Harris that he’s a smart man who’ll figure out a way to protect all parties involved from the proper procedures and scrutiny.

Gunnar catches up with Scarlett after the show, and pleads with her to admit she felt the connection and energy between them that he did when they were on stage. But Scarlett kind of blankly throws back a line that he once used on her, “All I felt was music.” That scene plays out with Luke’s “Can’t Help My Heart,” and we head over to studio, where Luke is listening to his recording of the song. His producer heads out of the room, and as he heads out, Sadie walks in. Aw yay, we get a goodbye scene. Luke guesses that Sadie isn’t headed to jail, and Sadie says apparently there was a witness who saw the whole thing, even though there’s no way he could have. So Luke lied to save Sadie. He says it was the right thing to do. We see the heartbreak in Sadie’s eyes as they approach each other, and Luke asks if she’s OK. She’s not, but says it does make her feel better to know there are good men in this world, and that she only wishes she’d known earlier. She embraces him, and tearfully tells Luke goodbye and to take care of himself. Luke asks if this is a “We can’t do whatever this is” goodbye because it sounds like an “I’m leaving town” goodbye. Sadie says it’s both, smiles through her ache, and leaves. Awwwwwwww….come back Laura!!!!!! Maybe when Luke’s moved on to somebody else and the writers want to throw a curveball and Laura’s schedule permits……

Avery and a glowing Juliette are beaming with gratitude over their little baby girl’s arrival when Manager Glenn and P.A. Emily arrive with flowers. They gush over the baby and ask after Juliette. She feels like she may never walk again but other than that she’s fine.

Rayna finally returns home, where Deacon has been waiting. He says he needs to get home for a change of clothes, and thinks the girls, while OK, need some Mommy time. They kiss and Rayna heads to see the girls. They’re glad she’s home, they missed her.

Avery and Juliette are singing a sweet lullaby to their baby girl, called “Hold You In My Arms,” written in real life by Sarah Siskind.

To DOWNLOAD “Hold You In My Arms,” written by Sarah Siskind and performed by Hayden Panettiere and Jonathan Jackson, click HERE!

As they sing, we see Nashville in Sadie’s rearview mirror while Luke is accosted by press wanting to know his relationship with Sadie. Gunnar and Scarlett stare off into opposite facing windows on the bus, Deacon listens to a message reminding him that it’s time for a MRI, and Maddie & Daphne sleep in the comfort of their mama’s arms. Back at the hospital, Juliette tells Avery she knows what the baby’s name should be, and the show leaves us hanging just as she’s about to say. In truth, it’s been up for fan vote, and we’ll find out the winning name next week, presumably. Also in store next week, the arrival of Christina Aguilera, singing some Audra Mae cowritten with Season 8 Idol alum Jackie Tohn! Join us for that, won’t you?

Preview here:

About Deb B 432 Articles
Also known as Windmills, I cover country music news and live televised country events, in addition to recapping ABC's 'Nashville.' Additionally, I occasionally do long-form chart analysis that has been cited by Entertainment Weekly, Pitchfork, The Guardian, The New Republic, NPR, and more.