WHY WE CARE


Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."

YOUR STORIES


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"

SUPPORT THE WORK OF PLUGGED IN

Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

TV Series Review

Rayna doesn't just sing country songs. She lives them.

Same could be said of everyone in Nashville, though—the show, not the city. It's full of cheatin' hearts and achin' souls, of drink-filled Saturday nights and prayer-rich Sunday mornings. Why, the show itself even moved on like a country music heroine, breaking up with old flame ABC and setting up shop with CMT just 'round the corner. The only thing we're really missing in Nashville is a dead dog and a broken-down truck. But give it time.

Nashville is a blend of soapy romance, big-business intrigue and some honest-to-goodness country music crooning. But while the drama may still have its new-series smell—at least on CMT— the central premise is as old as country music itself.

Friends in Low Places?

Rayna is an aging star struggling to keep her place in country music's firmament. She's still got the pipes and still commands respect. But her records aren't selling like they used to, and lately she's spent more time as the founder and head of Highway 65, a music label signing promising new country acts.

Juliette Barnes is everything Rayna's not: young, hip and oh-so popular. All the tweens go crazy for her sassy pop-country style, and industry execs just love her figure—or rather, her figures. She makes them money. They make her records. But that's not enough for Juliette: She wants respect. She wants confirmation that she's a legitimate musician, not some sort of fad. She wants … exactly what Rayna has. But a recent brush with death forced her to reexamine her priorities. Could it be that Juliette might actually change her ways?

It would seem that these two could find a way to work together, and they do … warily. But in Nashville, heartbreak is rarely more than a new verse (or episode) away. And with new characters always hopping into the show's soapy surroundings, there are always more excuses to stir the proverbial pot.

If you're familiar with country music, or if you wander over to the Plugged In's music section and check out a sampling of Adam Holz's country music reviews, you know that the genre is a mixed bag. Musicians play plenty of lip service to down-home values and front-porch charm, and you'll hear way more references to prayer and the Almighty than you'll ever find on, say, Lady Gaga's latest track. But if one song is full of apple pie and grandpa's wisdom, the next could be swimming in whiskey and a cloud of marijuana smoke.

So it stands to reason that Nashville—a show predicated on the country music business—would share some of that moral schizophrenia.

Walking the Line

People divorce and remarry here faster than you can switch tracks on Spotify. Eyes wander, hearts cheat, and there's always another love knot to untangle just around the corner—sometimes between a couple of guys. (Much has been made of gay country music star Will Lexington's growing relationship with fellow singer/songwriter Kevin Bicks, including the fact that the two are moving in together.)

But even as this same-sex relationship takes a more prominent place on the show in Season Five, so does the healing power of God. When Juliette is mysteriously rescued from a plane crash, she searches obsessively for her savior. She eventually finds Hallie, a devout Baptist who volunteers regularly at the church and tells Juliette, "I've been praying for you." When Juliette confesses to Hannah that she wonders why she—being the horrible person she's been—didn't die in that plane crash instead of all the good people who did, Hallie tells her that perhaps God was giving her a chance to change.

"If I started praying now, God would just laugh," Juliette says.

"Not the God I know," Hallie tells her.

Even when God isn't a part of the proceedings, Nashville still embraces strong, timeless values like hard work, charity and family. It suggests love and forgiveness can go a long way to curing the ills of this world.

And all that's great, of course. We don't see that sort of honest good will on, say, Game of Thrones. It's just a shame that the show requires plenty of forgiveness itself.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles

Profanity/Violence

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

Nashville: Jan 10, 2017 "Let's Put It Back Together Again"
Nashville: 10-17-2012

Credits

Rating

Readability Age Range

Genre

Drama

Author

Cast

Connie Britton as Rayna Jaymes; Hayden Panettiere as Juliette Barnes; Clare Bowen as Scarlett O'Connor; Eric Close as Teddy Conrad; Charles Esten as Deacon Claybourne; Powers Boothe as Lamar Wyatt; Jonathan Jackson as Avery Barkley; Sam Palladio as Gunnar Scott; Robert Wisdom as Coleman Carlisle; JD Souther as Watty White

Director

Distributor

Network

CMT

Performance

Record Label

Platform

Publisher

Released

On Video

Year Published

Awards

Reviewer

Paul Asay

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!