And then we all learn what this introduction was about. Rayna's tour is not selling. She wonders why, since they've done the radio and the press and her producer Randy says that he brought her three definite hits and she turned them all down. She entered the charts at 20 and is falling. Rayna, who is so cool and professional and whose hair still looks flawless, asks what the plan is. She doesn't REALLY want to know the answer to this, and so does not react well when the suits say that they want her to "co-headline" a tour with Juliette. A quick glance to Watty White shows us that he is NOT on board with this, and thus is someone that we can like. Rayna quickly deciphers that "co-headline" means that they want her to open for Juliette. She says that she has the most powerful manager and the best producer and has been with the label for 20 years, and is flabbergasted that this is the best idea anyone could come up with. But the facts are that the tour is primed to lose a lot of money and they'd be better off cancelling. The label guy gives her a hard sell and says that it's a no-brainer and when Rayna asks who came up with the idea we learn that it was Marshall Evans, the new head of the label. New people are the worst, obviously. The key to this problem is to invent a time machine and travel back to when Mother Maybelle Carter was alive and human beings still had integrity. Rayna asks for some privacy, and label guy says that Marshall wants her decision by Monday. We cut to Juliette on stage, singing a song about black mascara tears. I will say that Hayden Panettiere has the country ingénue squat and bounce maneuver down pat. As she smiles into the camera it's all that Rayna, watching backstage, can do not to throw a shoe at the TV.
After credits, Rayna hops out of a limo and runs into a building where her eeeeeeeeeeevilllllllllll father is being given some sort of award for excellence in eeeeeeeeeevilllllllll-doing. The celebration has already started and Rayna's chair up front, next to her dad and sister Tandy, is conspicuously empty. Evil dad, whose name is Lamar -- an evil name if ever I have heard one! -- is not pleased, in a very evil sort of way. Rayna enters as the guy on the podium goes on and on about how Lamar is very rich or something and thus deserves an award. I'm still not clear on what he does, unless he gets $20 every time he commits an evil deed. Whatever it is, I am certain that he's a republican. Lamar and Rayna quietly bitch at each other a little and it's clear that Tandy is their mediator. In any case, Lamar is so very rich and evil that he got his own day as a reward, and as he approaches the podium he tells Rayna to try to look happy. She succeeds, marginally. After the ceremony, Tandy both thanks Rayna for coming and apologizes for making her show up. Rayna did it for Tandy and not Lamar, but politely requests that they not make her do anything like this again soon. I'm sure Lamar is off somewhere tapping the tips of his fingers and yelling, "Mwah ha ha ha!" into a cavernous, echoing room, perhaps while petting a hairless cat.