What a sad little episode. Between Juliette’s counselor confession, the untimely exit of Gunnar’s long lost brother, and all the references to Old Yeller this was a tough one to get through.
Our epic tale of woe began when the quiet divorce Rayna and Teddy planned got splashed across the grocery store tabloids and suddenly her private life was entertaining the public. Of course public opinion wasn’t the problem for Rayna , the problem was Maddie. She already knew her father was having an affair so she’s not so innocent to believe her mother when she swears the words written about her and Deacon are lies. Oh Maddie, if you only knew. That girl is gonna need so much therapy when all the secrets come out.
And of course, the week his face is plastered all over the checkout aisle also happens to be the week of Deacon’s birthday. Grump that he is, Deacon likes to spend his birthdays alone watching Old Yeller, but spending a weekend alone isn’t an option when you’re a band leader/friend/sometimes lover of Juliette Barnes. So Ju, planed a surprise party complete with friends old and new and lots of special performances.
But, the party was really just a distraction from dealing with her newly sober mother. Juliette and Jolene were getting along better than ever, but Ju still wasn’t interested in helping the healing process beyond writing a check. (Perhaps because she knew a family therapy session would result in the admission then she’s wanted her mother dead since she was 9). No matter how much people try to explain how integral she is to her mother’s recovery, she won’t hear it. Until Jolene makes herself heard by getting drunk at Deacon’s birthday party.
Luckily, Juliette put on her big girl pants that night and instead of berating and abandoning her mother to continue partying, she picks her up off the ground and takes her home to tuck her into bed. She also finally gives in to the addiction counselor and agrees to talk to him about her 9th birthday. Jolene had promised her her first real party, but then had to cancel when she spent all the money on drugs. Juliette admitted to running away for a few hours and returning to find her mother asleep with a lit cigarette in her hand and she had to think before putting it out. The story is horrible under any circumstances, but even more so when you think that most 9 year-olds wouldn’t even know that was an option. Juliette thinks their relationship is beyond saving, but, like the addiction counselor, I have faith.
Despite Juliette’s disappointing night, Deacon’s party was an overall success. Gunnar and Scarlett debuted yet another beautiful duet (and Rayna better get to signing them before one of the other bigwigs in attendance beats her to it) and Rayna Jaymes herself hopped up on the stage to sing a little ditty she wrote for Deacon. Because nothing dispels affair rumors like singing a super sexy love song and eye f*cking each other across the room.
But the only one getting any actual lovin’ that night was Gunnar and Scarlett. Gunner was pulled from the party by a pair of police officers who needed him to identify the body of his brother, Jason. Earlier Gunnar and Scarlett discovered the gun Jason claimed to have ditched. Gunnar freaked, as anyone who wanted to keep their fugitive brother out of jail would, and threw the gun into the river despite his brother’s pleas that he needed the gun for protection.
Turns out, Jason may have been right about needing protection since he was beaten to death in an alley. But, if he had had the gun he’d be looking at murder charges, so it’s kind of a lose/lose situation. Nevertheless, Gunnar now has the guilt of leaving his brother to get arrested and taking away his protection from the enemies he made as a result of the incarceration. That’s a lot of guilt. But, as movies and TV have taught us, nothing turns you on more than the utter anguish of losing a loved one. So that’s how they dealt with that. And I know it was sad and all… but it was also really hot. Does Gunnar have any more family members to lose? Because that needs to happen again.
In other news, Teddy’s power is starting to go to his head (if Lamar is that ruthless when he’s working for you, I shudder to think what he’s like as an enemy. Teddy should be too) and the power seems to be finally leaving Avery’s head. I am happy about neither development.
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