In I’ve Been Down That Road Before (1×12), it’s all about the desire and fear to change, and the desire and fear to give in, for Juliette and Rayna respectively, in this episode that could just as well be called Three Rides and a Kiss.
Some episodes, in all their richness, can best be described by the the longest texts, but others are just better depicted in other ways. I’ve Been Down That Road Before, in season 1, is that kind of epic episode where pictures and quotes speak for themselves. But let’s get the less important stuff out of the way first.
Scarlett threw out Avery thinking he had been cheating with his new agent, Marilyn. She has no money and finally asks Gunnar to be her roommate. Avery who of course didn’t start sleeping with Marilyn until after Scarlett threw him out, is quite unhappy with that arrangement, breaks it off with her and is on a quest to make nice with Scarlett. But he is too cocky, trying to brag about his success and it all ends in a fight with Gunnar, which for sure does not make Scarlett and Gunnar less friendly with each other.
Teddy and Rayna has discussed their marriage and Teddy doesn’t know what to do anymore to make it better. Rayna has promised that she is not meeting with Deacon again and going on tour will give them both time to think. Teddy though kind of stops thinking when he runs into his old friend Peggy after he hears that Deacon is actually on the tour.
With that out of the way, let’s focus on those notorious days in Chicago.
Deacon makes a surprise entrance on the plain to Chicago and Juliette can’t but gloat about having Deacon in her band and notices that Rayna doesn’t look at her once on the flight to Chicago. Rayna knows exactly how to turn it around though to convince Juliette that she is neither pissed or jealous.
“I’m amazed you had nothing better to do on that plain ride than just to look over at me to see if I was looking at you”
It takes a lot of people to make a good show, Juliette then explains to Deacon when they arrive at the hotel.
“Really? Johnny Cash only needed three.”
Rayna next somewhat accidentally steps into the elevator Deacon is already on and the awkwardness just shuts the tiny room up.
Teddy is not happy to hear that Deacon is on the tour, when he and Rayna are taking time apart to think about their marriage.
“You know Rayna, I get it. You didn’t know anything about Deacon, you didn’t plan any of this. Life is a bitch sometimes and you are processing. Did we cover it all?”
Rayna is fabulous on stage in the evening performing one of her signature songs, Already Gone.
Juliette follows up with her glitzy show, belting it out in I’m a Girl!
But after Deacon’s eye-rolling looks at her, she takes his words to heart, suddenly thinking her show has too much glitter and stuff. Glenn is NOT supportive when she somewhat accusingly asks him if she ever will be able to change.
“A left turn now could be an exit out to obscurity.”
Rayna can’t really get over that Deacon joined Juliette’s tour, uses an excuse to get him over to talk and pretends to casually ask him what he is doing. Deacon has a straight answer for her.
“I play guitar for people who pay me money. That’s what I do.”
Juliette might be confident being that diva, the big star on stage, but when it comes to being personal, her insecurities pops up. To be yourself is scary, cause what if she isn’t liked? Juliette wants to be liked, but she’ll settle for adored. Only with Deacon does she dare to voice her fears.
“What if I decide to walk away from being that girl and no one comes with me?”
Deacon has become a good friend to Juliette after that disastrous beginning of theirs, listening, giving her support and advise. He knows what Rayna would have done, stay true to herself, and no, he replies, he was not always there to help her evolve.
“There’s thinking about doing something, and there’s just doing it.”
Rayna just can’t get over that Deacon is there and keeps letting him hear it next time they end up in the elevator together. Also because it bugs her that he refuses to talk to her.
“Never thought I’d see the day you’d be singing Boys and Buses with Juliette Barnes day in and day out, but you know, life never ceases to amaze.”
Well, Juliette took Deacon’s advise and starts her next show with a slow, emotional song and he follows her lead.
Glenn is not any happier and lets Deacon know that in all possible, rude ways, which Deacon continuously refutes until he’s kind of fed up.
“Tell me how you really feel, Glenn?”
Deacon decides it’s time to stop thinking himself and start doing. I guess we can thank Glenn for what happens in that third elevator ride, which Deacon rushes to get on.
“Rayna! I’m done talking”
Sometimes words are just not the only way to explain a feeling.
And sometimes the unexpected turns up outside the door.
Well, even if the words of First Aid Kit are streaming out in hotel room, the elevator, the corridor and penthouse,
I’ll be your Emmylou and I’ll be your June
If you’ll be my Gram and my Johnny too
No, I’m not asking much of you
Just sing little darling, sing with me
it was not the time for Rayna and Deacon to sing together again just yet.
The episode was written by Meredith Lavender and Marcie Ulin and directed by Stephen Cragg.
Funny note! Stephen Cragg has also directed one of my favourite ER episodes, Bloodline, from season 13.
Read my other Favourite Nashville posts here: My Favourite Nashville
If you like ER, my Abby and Luka post are here: ER’s Abby and Luka