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It's been one hell of a ride for Nashville fans in the months following the drama's Season 4 finale, which officially served as the series finale for the brief time until CMT stepped in and signed on for at least one more season. Arguably the most memorable part of that episode came with the cliffhanger involving the fate of Hayden Panettiere's Juliette, whose plane had gone missing. Thankfully, CMT has put out the very first information about Season 5, including a premiere date. We will finally get new episodes on January 5.
While actress Hayden Panettiere was reported to have been back as part of the returning ensemble cast of Nashville for Season 5, somehow nothing had been made official until now. The good news? The actress premieres in the brand new promo that CMT released for the new season of the drama. So, no more worrying among fans that Panettiere would be taking another hiatus from the show. Although it's not as if Juliette is super-duper happy to be back, if this face can be used as a litmus test. If you'd like to take a look at the first footage from Season 5, you can do so, below.
Aw, snap! Juliette is not only back, but she's also appears to be going through some thangs after making her way back to solid ground safe and sound. Her quote is about how we "tape ourselves together so that no one can see our flawed hearts." Does that mean things will go awry between her and Avery...again? Or is she referring to someone else's flawed heart?
The shift from broadcast to cable will come with some changes to Nashville's core approach, including a bigger focus on music performances, and the Season 5 first look definitely takes on another one of those. It's been said that the new season of Nashville won't be as crazy and off-the-wall when it comes to the plots being laid out, and just about everything we see and hear in this new promo is close-to-home human drama. Sure, it could all get wild down the line, but it looks like the root of everyone's problems involves romance, fame and choices in the music world. Classic Nashville.
Most of the whole gang is here, except for Layla and Luke, since Aubrey Peeples and Will Chase were cut from the cast after the show was renewed. We get to see Connie Britton's class act Rayna James, who may also be a temporary presence, as well as Charles Esten's Deacon, who may have a downward spiral or two in his future. And Clare Bowen's Scarlett has a legit tear falling down her cheek, which is never a good omen.
Nashville will make its highly anticipated return for Season 5 when it debuts on new network CMT on Thursday, January 5, 2017, at 9:00 p.m. ET. For everything left to premiere before then, check out our fall TV schedule.