Nashville Season 5 has had fans in a glass case of emotions.
It started with Juliette's plane crash and her difficult road to recovery.
Next, we watched a happily reunited Scarlett and Gunnar return to their bickering, mistrustful former selves, just in time to find out that Scarlett is pregnant and doesn't know who the father is.
Lastly, just as things seemed to be falling into place for Rayna, Deacon and their little family of four, a stalker shows up and threatens their safety. If that wasn't enough, just after Rayna escapes her stalker and fans everywhere were breathing a collective sigh of relief, she's involved in a tragic car accident that ultimately killed her.
Wow, Nashville. Just wow.
Read on to see what I thought were the best and worst parts of the first half of Nashville Season 5.
And remember to tune in for the second half, which premieres on June 1, 2017 at 9/8 Central on CMT or just watch Nashville online.
Best Couple: Rayna and Deacon
It breaks my heart to write this, knowing that one half of this couple is now gone, but there's no denying it's true. Rayna and Deacon were Nashville's best couple for the first half of season 5. Despite all that they've been through they somehow grew even more as a couple — working through their past to start a concept album; moving on from Maddie's emancipation and accepting her new relationship; and ensuring the safety of their family when a stalker showed up. I can't even imagine how Deacon will move on from such a devastating loss.
Best New Character: Clay
I had high hopes for Clay when they first introduced him, and despite some inconsistencies and slow development, I'm still excited to learn more about him. He seems strong and sensible which most likely comes from the woman who raised him — his grandmother. But we also know he has some deep internal issues stemming from his mother's addiction and abandonment. I'm interested to see how these feelings play out in his music.
Annoying New Character: Zack
Zack rubbed me the wrong way from the start. He's a tech billionaire who loves Rayna so much he flew her out to do a private, exclusive performance for him and his friends. That just screams arrogant, spoiled and entitled to me. Next, he buys his way into her life by purchasing a substantial stake of Highway 65. Then all of sudden he's using his position within the label to move in on Will. I'm sorry but all of this was just too much for me. I'm not a fan.
Annoying Old Character: Scarlett
I love that Scarlett is getting a backbone and searching within herself to find out exactly who she is and what she wants, but while she's doing that, she needs to stop making decisions that impact other people. She told Gunnar she loved him and wanted to be with him then she basically just took it back. She said she wanted to be part of The Exes but she's constantly pulling away from the duo. Now she's pregnant, which is the biggest and most important decision a person can ever make. I just hope she figures things out before she ruins her life and that of those around around her.
Most Improved Character: Juliette
Okay let's be real, Juliette has always been one of the best characters on Nashville but things got a little crazy for her during the second half of season 4. She abandoned her husband and baby, spiraled out of control with the use of drugs and alcohol, and was a raging bitch to anyone who tried to help her. This season the Juliette we know and love has returned, facing a lot of adversity along the way. Recovering from the plane crash and her injuries, Jules has embraced her faith and accepted support from those who love her.
Most Valuable Character: Rayna
Fans were shocked when Nashville lost Rayna. Not only because she's a main character and Connie Britton is so beautiful and talented but because the whole show revolved around her. She was Deacon's soulmate/wife; Maddie and Daphne's mother; the head of Highway 65; Juliette's competition/mentor; Scarlett's aunt/mentor/boss; and last but certainly not least, legendary, country superstar, Rayna Jaymes. She was at the center of everything. I know it won't be easy to fill her void, and I know the show can never replace her, but I look forward to seeing the other characters step up in her absense.