Honesty Reigns on ABC’s Nashville Finale

Characters Look Up After Hitting Rock Bottom

I hate that it took a near sexual assault to make everything right on Nashville.

But it’s like anything else in real life: Sometimes you need to hit rock bottom before you can start back up again.

And during Wednesday night’s (May 25) finale on ABC, everyone had their own rock bottom.

Let’s start with Maddie. After emancipating from Deacon and Rayna, she’d signed with a New York record label and started doing New York record label things. But when Rayna found out — by stalking Maddie’s Instagram — that she was working with the very same producer who’d tried to get Rayna into bed when she was a vulnerable teenager, she did what she had to do. She sent an open letter to the press, which eventually made its way to Maddie.

And just as the sexually-entitled producer was putting the predictable moves on Maddie, she read that letter on her phone, which coincided with her white knight of a dad barging into the room to bring her home. (And he did so non-violently, so kudos to Deacon for keeping his rage at bay.)

Juliette’s rock bottom came when word got out that she had been on the roof the night Jeff died.

“He’s dead. It’s my fault. Just pay her whatever she wants,” she told the lawyers about settling with Jeff’s sister. And at the Oscars later, Juliette is so disgusted with herself — “I’m a horrible person and these people worship me” — she decided to open up, honestly for once, and told a reporter the truth.

“I was up there because I was trying to commit suicide,” she said. “I didn’t remember it happened, and that’s when I disappeared. I’m not doing this for sympathy. I don’t deserve it.”

Avery calls her after he sees the interview, and she leaves the Oscars immediately to get home to him and Cadence. We may never know how that turns out, though, because the airport lost contact with her plane.

Even though every day is kind of rock-bottom day for Layla, who seems to leave a trail of lies and scandal in her wake wherever she goes, this time she really hit it hard. Because everyone she cared about found out that she was the one who told the media about Juliette’s involvement in Jeff’s death. Avery broke up with her, obviously.

“Oh, my god. This whole nightmare that (Juliette) is wrapped up in? It was you, wasn’t it? OK. You’re crazy and were done,” he said as he walked out on her for good.

Scarlett was in her not-so-happy place after she confessed her love for Gunnar to Gunnar, right after he’d spent two weeks in Aruba with Autumn.

“Now I ain’t hiding it no more,” she tells him. “Don’t you tell me how to feel.”

Her long-awaited decisiveness must’ve been a huge turn on for Gunnar, because during what was supposed to be their last show before they disbanded the band, they started kissing onstage. It’s probably say that that moment was Autumn’s rock bottom.

Then there’s Will.

After months of being raked over the coals by a conservative talk show — for trying to promote his gay agenda — he and Luke stage a protest concert outside the show’s Atlanta studio. Cynthia calls his lifestyle “domestic terrorism of his homosexual agenda” but ultimately lets him on the show.

And after two weeks of media training and a lifetime of being gay, Will was more than ready to have the last word on the show.

“You’re scared, aren’t you? You don’t want your audience to see me or hear me because they might recognize me,” he says on the show. “Not as Will Lexington: Gay Country Singer, but as their brother, their cousin, their friend or their coworker.

“I know people who feed on your brand of intolerance. I was raised on it myself. But I’m a good man, a good son, and there’s nothing to be scared of here.”

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.