"Nashville": Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere shine in series premiere
Connie Britton as country superstar Rayna from the new series "Nashville." / ABC
"Nashville" had plenty of music in its premiere, but don't mistake this show for "Glee," or even "Smash."
Country music is an integral part of this ABC drama created by Callie Khouri, but that's because it's an integral part of its namesake city. But it's not the only thing the show's about - there's much more going on in this promising, confident series premiere.
Fall TV preview 2012
Connie Britton ("Friday Night Lights," "American Horror Story") stars as Rayna James, a country music veteran facing a declining career. Her latest album isn't selling, and her record label wants her to combine tours with Juliette Barnes (Hayden Panettiere of "Heroes"), a much younger pop-country rival whose star is on the rise.
There's also Rayna's bandleader and former flame Deacon Claybourne (Charles Esten), whose own singer-songwriter career never took off, and his niece Scarlett (Claire Bowen), who waitresses at the Bluebird Cafe (a real Nashville spot), writes poetry and by the end of the episode shows major potential as a singer-songwriter herself.
But "Nashville" extends beyond the music. We also meet Rayna's father, Lamar Wyatt (Powers Boothe), a local power-player with whom she wants little to do.. In the pilot, he drafts Rayna's husband, Teddy Conrad (Eric Close) -- a failed businessman tired of standing in the shadow of his wife's success -- to run for mayor.
The self-assured pilot episode moved smoothly between each of the storylines - the two top country acts, the lower-tier singers hoping for a break, the political dealings in the town and the characters' struggles in their personal lives - and shows the potential to be one of the best new shows out this fall.
Did you watch "Nashville"? Do you think it will be a hit? Vote in our poll and share your thoughts in the comments.
Popular in Entertainment
- Justin Bieber booed at 2013 Billboard Music Awards 109 Comments
- Ray Manzarek, founding member of The Doors, dies
- Billboard Music Awards 2013 39 Photos
- Watch: Miguel jumps, lands on fan at Billboard Awards
- "The Voice": Top 10 take the stage
- CBS takes "Mike & Molly" tornado-themed finale off air
- Runaway mom begs for kids' forgiveness on Dr. Phil
- Toby Keith: Moore, Oklahoma "will persevere"