ABC’s Nashville is my favorite new show on TV this year and here are just a few reasons why:
The Queen - If you watch Nashville for one reason and one reason only, it should be Connie Britton. Her Rayna Jaymes is edgier and slightly more volatile than Mrs. Coach but just as flawless and with every bit as much grace. She absolutely lights up every scene she’s in. In just two episodes she has me fully invested in her character and the journey that lies ahead. And who knew? The lady can SING!
The Brat - Quite a few people have told me they aren’t watching Nashville because they aren’t fans of Hayden Panettiere. I’ve never really gone one way or the other. I didn’t watch much of Heroes and I haven’t really seen her in anything else. But this role seems hand made for her. Her portrayal of Juliette Barnes, part ingenue, part slutty siren, is spot on. While she initially comes across as pure crossover country trouble, you can see in her eyes that something deeper lies within.
The Chemistry - Connie Britton’s Rayna Jaymes and Charles Esten’s Deacon Claybourne have incredible, palpable chemistry whether they’re shooting the breeze, singing a song or screaming at each other from across the room. It’s hard not to root for them despite pesky things likes husbands and history. They also have incredible chemistry with whomever they’re sharing the screen, making every interaction feel rich with unspoken tension. They aren’t the only ones though. Clare Bowen’s Scarlett and Sam Palladio’s Gunnar have almost as much sparkle and they’re just getting started.
The Drama - The intricacies with which the characters’ lives are interwoven are just part of what makes this show so special. The narrative is fraught with familial animosity, power struggles, shady politics, seduction, love and heartbreak. All of this in just 84 minutes of television.
The Music - I’ve never been a big fan of country music. In fact, I avoid it when I can. It was something that made me nervous when I decided I wanted to try this show. I needn’t have worried. There is some country music, yes. But it’s really good! There are also stunning acoustic songs, sung beautifully by the actors who put an incredible amount of emotion into their performances. Rayna & Deacon’s “No One Will Ever Love You,” gave me chills and moved me to tears with its intensity. The best part? Most of the songs are made available on iTunes after the show!
Haven’t started your love affair with Nashville yet? It’s not too late! New episodes air Wednesdays at 9pm EST on ABC.