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GoutPatrol
Oct 17, 2009

*Stupid Moddie*



ram dass in hell posted:

I think "Peggy is supposed to be Hillary" is insane, but Hillary was literally a Goldwater republican lol

I'm guessing the family that had a JFK photo in their home were not Goldwater Republicans.

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Gaius Marius
Oct 9, 2012



Peggy is Catholic, of course her whole family is voting for Kennedy.

kalel
Jun 19, 2012



R. Guyovich posted:

you think betty's desire to "rescue" this obviously talented girl from what she sees as a ruinous future is about jealousy? there are pretty obvious parallels between betty's youth and sandy's, and reasons why betty might be looking back and seeing mistakes she's made and time she's wasted. that's not jealousy, it's regret. don has a similar journey over several episodes in season 7 with the much-maligned diana.

I meant "jealous" as in "she thinks Henry wants to gently caress Sandy." but i do see your point, and it does come full circle at the end of S7 for Betty when she decides to return to school in spite of her prognosis. fine, I hereby deem Sandy Not A Useless Character

R. Guyovich
Dec 25, 1991



Gaius Marius posted:

Peggy is Catholic, of course her whole family is voting for Kennedy.

"I love Bobby Kennedy."

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



gently caress Don Draper! gently caress DON DRAPER!

Oh my loving God you piece of poo poo gently caress you..... gently caress YOU!

ARRRGHHHHHHHH!!!! :argh:t

Mameluke
Aug 2, 2013
some dirty-sneaker-inbred-out of the woods-Pabst beer pussy methhead-junkie running all around town telling EVERYONE EVERYTHING ABOUT ELON MUSK


Jerusalem posted:

gently caress Don Draper! gently caress DON DRAPER!

Oh my loving God you piece of poo poo gently caress you..... gently caress YOU!

ARRRGHHHHHHHH!!!! :argh:t

Hell YES, gently caress DON :getin:

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







... Don ... gently caress......

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



Season 6, Episode 2 - The Doorway
Written by Matthew Weiner, Directed by Scott Hornbacher

Roger Sterling posted:

She gave me my last new experience.

An apologetic Megan leans over Don as he lays in bed sleeping, her motion waking him. Trying to hold back a smile because of her excitement, she explains that she didn't want to disturb him while he slept, but she couldn't wait any longer because she has to go: she's wanted on set today, and she couldn't get them to rearrange to tomorrow because she's needed on set then too... and for the rest of the week.

Don, bleary-eyed, takes a moment to catch up to both what she's saying and what it means, both for himself in the short term and her in the long term. Sitting up a little, he points out tiredly that this is good news, thrilling her because of course that's just the reaction she wanted, especially after her unease at only having a single line in her script when she returned from holiday. She even jokes about how she couldn't reach her Agent to let HIM know about the extra work, noting it is supposed to be his job to call her. But nothing is getting her down today, even though as she notes apologetically that this means she will have to be miss the funeral of Roger's mother, something she knows Don will be dreading attending at all, let alone by himself.

Whether his happiness for her is genuine, tainted, or simply put on, he wisely sets aside any concerns he might have about his own inconvenience: ever since she left SCDP it has been a fine balancing act for them both between the desire to support each other and the childish desire to lash out at the unfairness of having to put their own self-interest second. Moreso for Don, who unlike Megan didn't grow up in a gender where that was the norm, he is struggling mightily to be a "modern" man, even if purely out of fear of ending up in a poisoned relationship like he had with Betty.

She gently presses him back into bed, ignoring his joke and charming smile about not being able to sleep when he has a TV star for a wife, telling him to get as much sleep as she can and to give her condolences to Roger when he sees him. She heads out the door, barely able to contain herself: at the end of Season 5 she compromised her ideals in a desperate bid to keep her dream alive.... but it has paid off, she got the commercial and now she's in a soap, and people are recognizing her from all over America and her studio is writing a bigger part for her: she did it, she's an actor!

Don doesn't go back to sleep, of course. He sits up in bed, alone which always ends up making him miserable (and yet it's a state he so frequently pursues), and takes another look at PFC Dinkins' lighter. Standing, he tosses it without a backwards look into the trash and trudges off to take a shower and freshen up for the funeral to come.

At the Francis Residence, Betty returns with groceries and is not pleased to see Sally sitting in the kitchen eating a sandwich. She asks why she is eating, pointing out that Sandy is coming over for lunch, and Sally - now a teenager well and truly - can barely hide her disdain as she complains that she doesn't know why she is counting HER meals... and also Sandy isn't coming over.

Putting groceries away in the fridge, Betty notes that is a shame and asks if she is sick, and of course Sally can't answer without a snide little comment first, grunting,"Sick of being here" and letting that sit just long enough to imply that means the house (and thus, Betty?) before elaborating she means Rye in particular: she's left for Julliard early.

THAT catches Betty's attention and sets her alarm bells ringing, because she knows Sandy didn't get into Julliard... but does Sally know that? It seems clear from her demeanor she does not, and Betty doesn't fill her in, instead playing along when Sally tauntingly asks if she wanted a tearful goodbye, admitting that yes she did. Sally, obviously upset herself at suddenly losing a friend, pretends like she couldn't stand her, complaining she was stuck up and spoke pretentiously... all because she used tampons! Suddenly all her sullenness disappears and with the closest thing to politeness she can muster in this moody teenage phase, she expectantly asks if Betty can drive her and Jackie to the movies, but a distracted Betty simply moves on out of the room.

"THIS IS A GREAT VACATION!" yells Sally, in danger of tipping back in her chair her eyes are rolling back in their sockets so much. Betty doesn't hear her though, or pay her any mind, instead making her way to Sally's own room where she eyes up a photo of Sandy and Sally together and pulls it from the mirror, taking it with her as she heads elsewhere into the depths of the great, cavernous mausoleum she calls a home.



Don has cleaned up and gotten dressed, and now sits glumly in his apartment drinking and watching television as the maid (the same one he complained about getting dirt on the rug) vacuums behind him. He has places to go and things to do... and absolutely no motivation to do them.

At the memorial service, Roger is forcing a grin but barely keeping his razor-sharp tongue in check as two older women gush over how handsome and YOUNG he looks, insisting he hasn't aged a day, thrilling to the idea that his departed mother could have had a son who looks as young and virile as him. His half-mocking replies suggest that this is a common line of conversation he's had to suffer through every time he sees these old friends of his mother, and now that he himself is starting to feel his age at last any ego boost the compliments might have once given him are as dead as his mother.

Cooper offers a brief respite when he approaches to compliment the "rooms" of the giant mansion that was presumably Roger's mother's home, and then true blessed salvation comes when Jane comes walking up with a smile, and she DOES look young and full of energy/vitality. He gives her a kiss and thanks her for coming, and then is startled by a stern looking old woman in a wheelchair who demands that she be allowed to speak first, explaining testily that she means the eulogies when Roger quips that she's managed to speak first already!

He takes the chance to lead Jane away, openly thanking her for "rescuing" him, while Jane with great amusement points out that he should be enjoying his "admirers". She does have a slightly awkward thing to bring up herself though, pointing out that she still has his mother's ring.... and she couldn't help but think he might want it back. Roger's confused by this, which makes it all the more awkward as she points out that he might want to give it to Margaret... or maybe bury his mother with it.

With seemingly utter indifference, Roger shrugs and notes that they "burned her already" and besides, "they" steal jewellery from the dead bodies before they put them in the ground! But he does offer a sincere thought, albeit in a jokey way, he thinks Jane should keep the ring because his mother always did like her... after all, she always paid the rent on time!

But if he was indifferent to his mother's heirlooms or her cremation, he seems oddly out of sorts when Cooper points out that the "victuals" have arrived and gestures to a horrified looking delivery man standing next to the maid: he's brought plates and and a bag of food but clearly had no idea it was for a memorial, and it certainly wasn't something that Roger ordered. Approaching grumpily, he complains that the refreshments were supposed to be only tea and petit fours, snatching away the delivery slip and muttering for them to take it off to the dining room.

As he wanders back, looking over the slip, he steps near a nervously waiting Ken Cosgrove, Pete Campbell and Harry Crane who attempt to offer their condolences. Roger isn't listening too, fixating on the seemingly inconsequential, asking grumpily,"Bob Benson, SCDP.... who the hell is that?"

Oh my loving God he didn't.... :cripes:

"That's from us," Ken immediately claims, gently taking the slip from Roger, the well-honed practise of an Accounts Man who knows when to calm a client and especially when to take the "bill" from him. Happily Roger is distracted by his daughter Margaret coming over and noting it is probably time for the actual Memorial to start, simply giving him a look when he complains,"What's the rush?"

He sighs, knowing he can't put it off anymore, an ill-advised order of refreshments from a kiss-rear end junior employee isn't enough to put off acknowledging the facts of why they're actually all here today. So he offers a muttered "thanks for coming" to Ken, Pete and Harry and leaves with Margaret... the latter watched by a leering Harry who openly remarks to the other two that she is "all kinds of trouble". Disgusted, Pete points out that EVERYTHING seems to make Harry horny, and doesn't give Ken's own question the dignity of a response when he asks.... is Pete's OWN mother still alive?

That's a good question! The last we saw of her (and Pete's brother!) was after they salvaged what was left of her finances after their dipshit arrogant rear end of a father blew it all and then died before the chickens could come home to roost, and the last time she was even mentioned was when Trudy warned Pete to stop looking to his mother for a love she wasn't ever going to give him.

Don arrives at last, right in the nick of time... but this isn't the Don Draper we're used to. This is a return to the lows of early season 4, when every moment Don wasn't at work (and sometimes when he was) he was just pouring liquor down his throat to try and mask the utter emptiness of his life post-divorce from Betty. He is at least able to walk in a straight line, but he's having trouble focusing, has to pause and collect himself to talk and is showing the strain of trying to sound sober when he (takes too long to) give a response to questions asked.

Harry doesn't help matters by excitedly asking after Megan, saying that rumor has it she could soon be up to four days a week on the show (so everybody BUT her Agent knows what is going on?), causing Don to darkly mock "Legend has it..." as he takes another nip of his drink.

Pete, an unctuous toady to the right people but in open contempt to those he feels he somehow has the advantage over, openly cracks about Don having somehow managed to find a drink despite them not being served. Ken doesn't let him slip out of his earlier question though, asking again if his mother is alive, and sullenly Pete finally responds, saying that yes she is. Ken moves on immediately from there though, asking Don if his mother is still with them too, seemingly fixated on the idea of adult men without mothers... is his own mother alive? Is he thinking about life without her, as memorials of this nature can sometimes get you thinking?



Don is NOT prepared for a question about his mother, and certainly not in this state. Rather than give an answer that might conflict with some story or bit of information he might have let slip or implied at some long forgotten prior encounter, he simply looks away and mutters that he's going to go watch the proceedings from "over there", wandering away. Or hell, maybe he just couldn't bring himself to even think about his mother, whether the biological one who died giving birth to him or the apparently cruel and hard woman who raised him in spite of his bastard status and permanent reminder of her husband's infidelity.

Roger gets everybody's attention, jokingly apologizing for the "dry" atmosphere, reminding them all that his mother did not care for "libations". Don, whether understanding what he's doing or too blitzed to really grasp the significance, raises his glass to Roger in a quiet salute before going back to nuzzling at the glass, looking like he might nod off at any moment.

Before Roger can continue he is sternly interrupted yet again by the old woman in a wheelchair, insisting that she be allowed to speak first. He smiles and agrees that she should roll over (or be rolled, by her patiently waiting nurse) and take center stage. As they move into place, Roger notices another couple of latecomers, and these ones seem to hit a pang deep inside of him for some reason: it's Mona, his first wife, accompanied by a date (or has she remarried?), and for whatever reason seeing them here in his mother's home seems to momentarily throw him for a loop.

Regathering himself, he introduces the old woman: she's Mrs. Hazel Tinsley, who flew up from Palm Beach to attend the memorial. She insists that Roger stay next to her, proclaiming severely that she does not believe in speaking graveside, clutching a piece of paper in her hands before reading loudly from it that Roger's mother was a noble woman "of some advantage" who was married to one man but loved another.

In a lesser show this would be where some great hidden scandal or shock would be revealed post-mortem. But this isn't To Have and To Hold, and so what Mrs. Hazel Tinsley was so adamant about reading is a glowing tribute to a dearly departed friend who adored her son. Just as Roger himself once proclaimed without a hint of doubt, she loved her son far more than she loved her husband. She was devoted to him, he filled her days, she could not talk to her friends without gushing about him and his many achievements (being born rich and being gifted a job where all he had to do was drink and get clients drunk/laid a lot!), his wit and his kindness. They would all encourage her to remarry, to find another man, but she proclaimed she needed no other, her heart was full because her son was her sunshine.

Don proceeds to vomit into the umbrella stand.

Everyone freezes in horror, and then Ken, Pete and Harry rush to his side and quickly escort him out, Don mumbling the familiar drunkard's self-pitying apology of,"Sorry, I'm sorry" before they quickly get him out of sight. Roger mutters to a bewildered Mrs. Tinsley to continue her speech, and then suddenly strides forward face-to-face with Mona's husband/boyfriend and demands to know what he (Bruce Pike) is doing HERE!?!

Oh poo poo this is getting good!

With a nervous smile, Jane suggests they get somebody in to clean the mess, and Roger snaps that Pike can clean it up. Mona is horrified, telling Roger to stop it, and when Pike quietly snarls that he came to pay his respects to his mother, Roger snaps back that she didn't like him (Pike mutters in astonishment that he never even met her!) and complains to a protesting Mona that she shouldn't have brought him. Margaret, sitting with her husband and young son (Has Roger ever once mentioned that he is a grandfather?) pleads with her father to settle down, but he roars that this was only supposed to be family and - in typical Roger fashion, far from the sunshine his mother raved about - roars at everybody to get out, proclaiming dramatically,"THIS IS MY FUNERAL!"

And there it is. All funerals are really for the living, of course, but that is particularly what this is today. Roger told his therapist he wasn't scared of death, just irritated by it... but that was an intellectual response, an acknowledgement of mortality that he hasn't REALLY come to grips with yet even though he knows he should/thinks he has. His mother dying though? That brings his own mortality into sharp relief, and when he says this is "my" funeral he's just as much talking about the realization that yes, he IS going to die someday as he is talking about how this get-together was for the still living (particularly him) to feel better about losing his mother.

When nobody makes any move to leave, Roger retreats, unable to bear being in the room with any of them any longer, deciding to simply remove himself from the equation rather than face up to things - just like he did with Mona and later Jane, when things are bad more often than not he simply takes the expedient route of just no longer being there.



Betty, meanwhile, has made her own trip into the city, because it seems she didn't take that photo from Sally's room purely as a keepsake. She's presumably on or around St. Mark's, hoping to find the place with the "kids" that Sandy talked so glowingly about during their late night chat, showing Sandy's photo to people on the street in the hopes that one of them has seen the girl.

Some people stop, look and shake their heads before moving on. Others simply walk by, it's cold and there is snow and they live in the city, they want to get where they're going and they certainly don't want to stop so a stranger can talk to them, that's something you learn quickly in the city. Doors and windows on the ground floor of the building behind her are boarded up, it's 1000 miles away from what she would picture as an idyllic paradise like Sandy described, but this is where she said it would be.

Far from the squalor of St. Mark's, Roger lies sulking on his belly like a child in an upstairs bedroom of his now dead mother's enormous home. Mona steps in quietly and lets him know that everybody has finally gone, and he sulks that obviously that's not true. After all, she's still there, and he's still mad at her for bringing Pike, mistaking her complaining about "that man" always embarrassing himself to be a dig at her date. She explains she means Don, and he shrugs and simply says that Don was saying what they were all thinking during Mrs. Tinsley's proclamation of Roger as the sunshine of his mother's life.

He complains anew that it was a mistake for Mona to bring Bruce, and she agrees, cutting through his bullshit with decades of experience (I think this is a significant part of the the reason he divorced her, he feared a woman who really, truly "got" him) by saying that now he has one over on her, asking if getting that acknowledgement has in any way made him feel better.

"My mother's dead," he pouts, but that play at sympathy doesn't work on her either, Mona simply agrees again and makes a simple comment that says a lot,"It must be hard on you." She sympathizes with him, of course, commiserates with him, but she also knows that Roger grew up not only lavished with wealth and opportunity but his mother's uncritical love and adoration. That is finally gone from his life now, and she knows him well enough to know how he'd react to that sudden gulf. Roger though insists that he feels nothing, in spite of lying on what is presumably her bed using what are presumably her furs as a makeshift blanket.

Still, despite his claim not to feel anything, she offers him kind words that are also probably true: his mother knew that he loved her. He does admit to feeling guilty that he didn't spend more time with her, and - ever one to see different angles, and better placed than anybody in the world to understand what makes Roger tick - she reminds him that he has a daughter of his own (and a grandkid?): What would he he want her to say at HIS funeral.

He blanches at a reference to his own funeral, because again his claims to only be irritated at the thought of mortality is hiding a deep-seated fear/horror of the thought, claiming that when he was in that room with family and friends all he saw were a bunch of women he disappointed. Not so, laughs Mona, promising him that everybody loves him and most are more concerned about what HE thinks of THEM. But when Roger, being Roger, cheekily reminds her of the last time they were on a bed covered in furs together, she quickly makes the difference between her and Jane clear: she doesn't get fooled by his neediness (and selfishness), gently slapping away his hand when he kisses it. Not wanting to give up, he suggests it would be "soothing", and she chuckles that he can "go sooth yourself" before heading out of the room to go and clean up.

That leaves Roger, alone on his mother's bed in his mother's house. He curls up under a blanket of his mother's furs. The man who "feels nothing" and whose testiness he insists is purely because he wants a drink is an open sore, throbbing with pain, utterly distraught and miserable and missing his mother... and utterly ignorant of that fact, believing for all the world that he really is just fine and totally ready to move on with life.

At Don's apartment building, Ken and Pete struggle to help him stagger to the lobby door, where Jonesy quickly gets the door open. Don, unfortunately, has hit the sloppily happy part of being so drunk he is barely able to walk, and with his inhibitions torn down he finally asks the question that has been burning in him to ask: what did Jonesy see?

At first not understanding, thinking it's a bit, Jonesy throws his hands up and promises he saw nothing, gleefully miming zipping up his mouth. But his smile drops when Don, eyes locked on him, all curiosity with a nasty edge as he explains that he meant when he died: what did he see when he died?

Ken may not know the circumstances of Jonesy's near-death experience, but he knows this is a monstrously inappropriate question to ask in this situation. He tries to steer Don away from Jonesy who has dropped his normal friendly act and just zoomed straight to the elevator, both of them determined to get Don out of the lobby as fast as possible. But Don jerks his arm away, insisting that he wants to know, Jonesy trapped now as they all wait for the elevator to arrive, Don once again asking what he saw when he died.

Jonesy tries to wave it off, saying the doctor said he wasn't really dead, but - mouth splitting open into a delighted grin - Don drunkenly marvels that he DID die, because Don saw him die. He points to the floor, gasping to Ken that he was dead right there, then is right back to Jonesy again, too drunk to see how uncomfortable he has made him, insisting he tell him.

So Jonesy offers the token response, that he saw a light, but Don pushes for more: was it warm? Tropical? Could he hear the ocean? Seemingly likening the concept of death to how he felt on his own recent Hawaiian holiday? Which is... unsettling.

Blessedly the elevator arrives and Ken and Pete manage to maneuver him into it, Pete reassuring Jonesy who - even now - remains professional and shows actual concern as he asks if Don is alright. The doors close, and Jonesy is left alone again, his good mood destroyed by the unwelcome reminder of his recent escape from death, unsettled by Don's unsettling fixation on it. After all, he might be a bit of a goofy character, but he's not some sideshow attraction who exists purely for Don's amusement. Being faced with your own mortality is tough enough, literally dying and being brought back would only make that worse, and to have it reduced to the subject of a drunken tenant's repulsive fascination? Ugh.



Still out on the snow covered streets, Betty spots two young men approaching the door to the building she is standing outside. She asks if this is St. Mark's Place and when they say it is, she pauses them from stepping inside to show them the picture and ask if they've seen the girl, pointing out Sandy.

There reply isn't a yes but it's not a no either, simply shrugging and saying that lots of girls come in and out of this place. She's desperate though, she's been into all the buildings on the other side of the street so it's this place or nowhere. Complaining about the cold they tell her they're going in, and nervously she asks if she can come inside as well. Utterly indifferent to the notion of a stranger in their home, they simply say the door is always open and head inside.

She stands a moment on the threshold, the still open door a black rectangle that must be setting alarm bells ringing: only 2-3 years ago Betty would never have dreamed of entering a strange place like this, let alone unaccompanied, certainly not without her husband with her. But her concern for Sandy is genuine, so after the door closes she reopens it - true to their word, the door is always open - and steps inside, finding herself in a dark building that clearly hasn't been cleaned in months if not years.

The door closes behind her and her every instinct is screaming that she must get out, but she presses on, even when startled by a rat racing along the floor. She hears the men from earlier upstairs, calling out that they got the "pork butt" and "lifted" some onions. She moves on further into the house and up the stairs, passing a room where a number of young people are sleeping or passed out: this is the "just living" that Sandy was so excited about? For Betty it is horrifying, an utterly alien scene AND mindset for her, as strange and mysterious as the Hare Krishnas must have been for Harry when Paul introduced him to them.

She moves further in, finding the kitchen, as messy and dark as the rest of the building, which is clearly abandoned and that these "residents" are squatting in... but she also spots Sandy's violin case at the end of the hall. Picking it up, she calls out to Sandy, opening a nearby door... and finds a man inside pissing into a bucket on the floor. Shocked, she quickly closes the door and apologizes, the man glancing her way but otherwise unbothered: the residents of this place are apparently used to a complete lack of privacy.

Returning to the kitchen, she finds the two men from earlier and explains the violin belongs to the girl she was looking for, asking again if they've seen her. Neither of the men are aggressive or hostile in any way, but wearily they explain that they've gotten tired of telling "people like you" that they haven't see "girls like her", this is a "regular rap" they get from worried parents or social workers.

They insist they haven't seen her daughter, and when she quietly says she isn't Sandy's mother they laugh that maybe she's her violin teacher... before one of them sees the pained look on Betty's face and immediately regrets his attitude. After all, they may be squatters, thieves and filthy, but they do have a genuine open door policy and a clear belief in the equality of all, and so he takes pity on her.

Reminding himself of Sandy's name, he calls out loudly so all the other residents can hear, asking if any of them have seen Sandy. His duty discharged - if someone has, they'll say, if they haven't, they won't - he turns his attention back to his meal prep, asking Betty if she knows how to make goulash, running through his sparse list of ingredients, including a small tin of paprika they stashed in the back of "Moon's" pants.

Betty looks around the filthy kitchen, pointing out that before anything else they need a pot. They have one, Moon excitedly declares, pulling a bucket down from a shelf. Betty's further horrified to discover they don't have running water, the other man explaining the pipes are frozen at the nearby Episcopal where they used to use the hose: things were better in summer, he opines, after all it was hot then and they had water, now it's cold and they don't.

Moon heads up to the roof to put snow into the bucket, insisting that they do it all the time when Betty warns this will make them sick. The other man saws away uselessly at the "pork butt" before heading out to grab an army knife from one of the beds to do the job instead. Betty is left standing alone, smoking a cigarette, revolted by what she sees but unable to move away, knowing that it wasn't just a theory, Sandy really has been here.... but where is she now?

At the home of the late Mrs Sterling, which could probably easily house all the residents of St. Mark's Place, Margaret Sterling sits and drinks tea when her father enters the room looking for Mona. She's already left, and Brooks took their kid out for a bike ride while she waits for the last of the deli food to be wrapped up for taking away, so for now it's just the two of them. Roger notes that it's too cold for bike riding but with obvious pride Margaret explains the boy won't feel it, telling how he walked into the house singing recently with a bloody nose that he didn't even realize he had.

"So he's tough, then?" asks Roger who is clearly proud himself, because of course he equates not crying with masculinity. But realizing they're alone, Roger decides to take a moment and perhaps follow some of Mona's advice, telling his daughter there is something he wants her to have. He moves to a cupboard and fetches a jar filled with slightly murky water, passing it to her and explaining it was a gift from his father to his mother. With pride and a sense of longing, Roger explains that his father traveled everywhere, and one one of his trips he collected this: water from the River Jordan. Roger was baptized with it, as was Margaret herself, though he admits that his mother probably forgot all about it in her advanced years which is why they didn't use it on her child, and we finally get a name for the latest in the Sterling bloodline: Ellery.

She's touched by the gift... but also can't help but ask a question that has been on her mind: did "Nana Mimsy" leave her anything else? No, Roger replies simply, claiming she left all her assets to the zoo and they're going to name all the animals after her. Suppressing a smile, Margaret insists she doesn't find that funny but a pleased (especially since she clearly does) Roger insists that he does, and it seems he wasn't entirely joking, saying the Will looked like the cargo manifest for Noah's Ark.

But while Margaret is charmed, she's also being realistic, pointing out that while the lack of inheritance isn't a big deal for Roger himself, her husband Brooks doesn't have the same advantage of starting off where Roger himself did as a young married man. Roger waves that off that Brooks will get there eventually, both an endorsement of her husband's abilities but also a convenient way to avoid helping out. Margaret insists she has confidence in her husband's abilities too... but she also wishes they could take advantage of a new opportunity she told Nana Mimsey about that the older woman didn't understand.

His pleasant mood undermined as he realizes that his loving daughter who stuck around to check up on him is actually just after money, Roger pulls out his cigarettes but holds off when she quietly asks him not to smoke, knowing that it's true when she says they're bad for him... and also that she's not lying when she says she worries about him. He doesn't doubt her love, he never has even when things were at their worst due to him divorcing Mona and marrying Jane, but like so much else in his life this relationship is infected by a desire for his money.

So he listens, offering as open mind as he can, and Margaret explains that refrigeration is the wave of the future, that Brooks has an opportunity to buy the technology for refrigerated trucks so it won't matter what they transport, but that it will revolutionize trucking and market access. It's actually... a very good idea! She's right that Brooks has stumbled across something with real potential that he simply can't afford to take advantage of, and though Roger clearly doesn't fully understand it himself he does at least tell Margaret that he'd need to speak with Brooks about it for further information AND see something on paper so he knows it isn't simply "an idea". Happily she assures him Brooks has plenty of that.

Having gotten what she wanted, she's glowing with happiness as she explains she's going to go check if the last of the catering has been packed up yet. She heads off, and Roger sits alone again. Mona asked him how he wanted his daughter to speak of him at HIS funeral, and reminded him he has a family that loves him he should spend more time with. His first tentative effort at this simply reminded him yet again that like so many other people, even his own direct family largely see him as a source of cash.

The thing is though... whose fault is that? Roger never felt any lack of love and adoration from his mother to go along with the immense wealth she provided to him, but he himself has constantly throughout the time of the show demonstrated that he thinks he can buy love and that his status as the financial provider for the family makes him immune from criticism or consequence. Only now, single again and with a dead mother, finally facing up to his own mortality and legacy, does he want more than that... and he's mad that he's not getting the thing he didn't earn.

His daughter loves him, hell even his ex-wives do, but he made the central core of their relationships money, or rather himself as the source of it, because it was easier that way to get what he wanted and pretend that he always had the trump card of his wealth to hold onto his position. Now that the benefits of this have been hollowed out at work AND at home, now that they still think of him in the same way he forced them to think about him... he's upset? This is the chickens coming home to roost, this is reaping what you sow, and the only one really at fault here is Roger Sterling.



Megan comes looking for Don later that evening, calling out to him, surprised to find him in bed. She notes that apart from the mess he's exactly where she left him, asking if he managed to make it to the memorial. He grunts that he put in an appearance but that he should have eaten lunch first, and she winces sympathetically and offers to get some some aspirin, having no idea just how much he's underplaying his disastrous appearance.

He assures her he's fine now and asks how her day was, and mischievously she explains that she pushed Derek's mother down the stairs. It involved a close-up and she tried to make herself look as evil as possible, though she admits that wasn't so easy given she was staring directly into the face of a stuntman in a dress. Don, still lying in bed, shrugs and points out that there probably isn't a "nice" way to shove somebody down the stairs, and when she notes that now she's a villain people on the street won't want her autograph anymore, he promises her that they absolutely will.

Still on cloud nine, Megan tells him to stay in bed while she goes and makes him some dinner to help him feel better, offering to come get him when it is ready. Before she goes though she lets him know that Rosa - the maid - left something for her to give him. She places it on the bedside table, explaining she thinks Rosa was scared he would think she stole it otherwise. She leaves, and Don finds himself staring at PFC Dinkins' lighter.

Yes, Don may be well-practiced at simply leaving things behind when he wants something new... but more and more it has become obvious that the problems/fears/issues he is trying to abandon just continually end up returning to haunt him some more.

At St. Mark's Place, the bucket of goulash sits atop of a gas cooker, a dirty plate and utensils next to it. A couple of candles provide the only basic illumination, and Betty Francis is still there, still smoking, still hoping Sandy will make a return. The cook, Danny, is smoking a joint and offers a hit to Betty who declines... but does if marijuana is expensive. Is that genuine curiosity, or is this a well-practiced bit of motherly guilt pointing out that they have to steal food but have money for drugs?

Moon returns as Danny ponders whether he needs to stir the concoction in his bucket again, laughing that his coat smells of onions, and then they hear a newcomer call out as he returns to the home from whatever trip he's been on. Though the group appears to have a very open "we're all equal" mentality, both Moon and Danny seem a little anxious about making sure they keep on the newcomer's good side, careful to point out what they've accomplished today while he was gone.

He's not much older than the others, if at all, accompanied by a big brooding man who says nothing but simply glares at everything. His name is "Zal" and he has managed to get hold of batteries rather than the bread he went out for, but seems delighted by this fact. By way of introduction to Betty and her problem, Danny asks if he made any "friends" today to give her the cue to show Sandy's picture. Betty quickly jumps to, showing the violin case and explaining it belongs to her friend.

Zal, however, without a hint of concern, simply states that "Blondie" has it wrong, the violin belongs to him. Betty doesn't try to debate, she simply retorts that HE is wrong, it belongs to Sandy, showing him the photo. He takes a look and admits - it would be stupid not to - that he knows her, she's the girl who sold him the violin. She was trying to raise the cash to get out to California, complaining that it was too cold.

Funny how the romantic image she had of St. Mark's fell apart the second she had to live the reality! Now she's replaced it with the romantic image of California!

Worried, Betty asks where she is now, upset (as is Danny, to his credit) when Zal rudely informs her that her "daughter" is gone now and if she doesn't owe her money then it's none of her business where she's gone. Betty complains about him being rude, which given how she was raised to forever say and do the "right" thing is the greatest social crime she can think of, while he launches into what is probably a well-worn through speech about how people like her HAVE to be in control and he should just leave her be, about how they take on the garbage that THE ESTABLISHMENT throws away, about how THEY are society's garbage!

Yeah cool cool, meanwhile Betty's worried about a 15-year-old girl with no money trying to get from one side of America to another!

Danny speaks up, upset not so much at Zal's attitude as him trying to get Betty to leave, pointing out that one of the "rules" of the place is that you can't ask anybody to leave: everybody is welcome, as he and Moon said earlier the door is always open. Zal though insists that the bylaws allow an exception if somebody is a nuisance or a narc.

Oh. They're one of THOSE kinds of open and inviting free societies... the kind where the rules designed to make everybody welcome end up dividing into "us" and "them" anyway and somebody rules-lawyers their way into somehow being in charge regardless.

Offended, upset, worried about Sandy, Betty collects her things and complains that she obviously isn't one of the people who throw them away like garbage like he claims, since she's here looking for somebody she wants back (and as Danny and Moon mentioned, people come looking for their children here constantly). But Zal isn't done trying to make his half-assed point, and he snatches her purse from her, opening it up and mocking the fact that she has $80, taunting that she can keep the money since it is all people like her care about.... even though he is the one who snatched the purse and looked inside, and he is the first person out of all of them today to even mention money.

Reading her identification details, making an implicit threat that now he knows who she is and where she lives, he passes back her purse and informs her that they don't like her life anymore than she does. Betty, who has shown remarkable restraint (and sensible, she's in an unfamiliar environment surrounded by strangers and nobody knows where she is) up to this point, kind of completely blows it here when she lashes out in kind, helping prove Zal's point by hissing that they deserve to live in this pigsty and she hopes they get tetanus or crabs.

But as she tries to leave, Zal stops her, insisting she leave HER violin behind. She growls that she doesn't believe for a second Sandy sold it to him (to be fair, he was out scrounging for bread and batteries, did he really have cash on hand?) but he insists that it is his... but he will sell it to her for $10, once again demonstrating that the only one really fixated on money here is him.

She demands to know what he wants a violin for and, confused, he laughs that he's going to learn to play. "Like it's that easy?" she sneers back, and this time when she forces herself past he doesn't stop her. She beats a quick exit, her coat sleeve catching on the frame of the door and tearing a little, but she keeps on moving, eager now to be out of there. But once in the hallway, the adrenaline dropping after her confrontation with Zal and the high tension she's been feeling ever since she stepped inside the building.... she has to face facts.

Sandy is gone, and maybe she'll make it to California and maybe she won't, but Betty has reached the end of the path her limited knowledge of the girl can take her down. So why keep the violin? As a keepsake? She certainly isn't going to learn to play, and how would she explain having it to Sally? Or Henry? No, it was a pointless, emotional thing to take it away, and Zal was right in some respects: she didn't like not being in control, and taking the violin with her was the next best thing to taking Sandy. The latter isn't happening now, and so the former is pointless. She places the violin case down and leaves it behind, for Zal to learn to play or forget about or sell or whatever he decides to do.... because whether he bought it or not, it's not Sandy's anymore, and it was never Betty's. Now it's just a violin.

https://i.imgur.com/LD9SGej.mp4

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



Peggy Olson is working late (shocking, I know), Abe arriving to her office having brought meals for them both. He points out that she was typing away busily when he arrived, asking if she cracked a new way to approach the ad? Nope, she's actually borrowing a technique she learned from Don when he was blocked: she's writing a letter to a made-up friend where she raves about how great her new headphones are, hoping it will spark some idea.

Abe admits that though he does regret that it's stuck her with so much extra work, part of him is delighted that the unjust war in Vietnam is FINALLY having an effect on commerce in America, because sadly he knows that hitting the bottom line of businesses in America is the most likely way the war might come to an end. Peggy very deliberately chooses not to engage with him on this line of reasoning, simply asking for the meatball sub and leaving it at that.

Two of her Copywriters come in, lighting up when they see the food, asking if "we" ordered dinner. "No," replies Peggy without a hint of awareness of just how lovely is it is to be eating food in front of the workers she is making work late, despite having been on the other side of this kind of treatment herself for so long at SCDP. Abe at least offers to share his own sub, but Peggy kindly dismisses him by asking him to try out the headphones again and see if any words come to his mind.

Turning her attention to her copywriters, she asks what they've got, and they eagerly explain they have three different angles.... all of which are simply a variation on the exact same idea: a voiceover changing the line from what Mark Antony is now silently mouthing. Peggy listens to all three and asks for the next two angles, belatedly (and angrily) realizing that it was only one angle after all.

Coldly, borrowing another old trick from Don Draper, she hollows them out with an authoritative reaming, declaring that they should know the difference between an idea and the execution of the idea, and that it is cowardice to bring her something like this. Reminding them that she has been exactly where they are, she accuses them of hoping that one of their variations would spark an idea in her that they could then eagerly agree with and call her a genius because they'd be willing to approve anything if it meant they could leave. NOW she passes them her meatball sub, telling them to split it... because they're NOT going home.

Deflated, diminished, and depressed, her copywriters leave, and she turns to Abe and gets his attention as he jams along to music through the headphones, asking how they sound. "Scared," he points out with a grin, noting she was very harsh on them, and that some workers don't respond well to that kind of treatment. Peggy, who many times in the past accused Don of not grasping how much he intimidated everybody, insists that they're fine and that they know they were being lazy.

Abe wisely doesn't pick a fight, they've been together long enough now that they both know when it is time to debate something and when it is time to leave well enough alone. He cracks a joke about not being familiar with the abuse required to join her fraternity, and goes back to jamming out to the music. She returns to her own work, immensely cheered by both excorcising some of her stress by taking it out on the copywriters and the fun of engaging briefly with her partner. But as she turns back to her work, the movement of his bopping along in silence to music only he can hear catches her eye again. She turns and watches him, his eyes closed and unaware of her gaze, and just like that something sparks, some inspiration occurs... just like her copywriters were hoping it would.

Betty returns home to Rye, feeling relief to be back in her own enormous home that doesn't have a lick of dust or dirt on it anywhere. Coming up the stairs, she sees Sally happily chatting on the phone telling a friend that a boy in their class must like her because she laughed at him and boys LOVE that (laughing at his joke or laughing at HIM!?!). Betty mouths a hopeful hello to her daughter who smiles back at her and mouths back,"One moment" as she collects up the phone and... walks to the door and closes it in Betty's face.

Exhausted, mildly depressed, and also shaken after having her own cozy little worldview shaken up (Zal was an rear end in a top hat, but he was working from the spine of a laudable concept), Betty walks away from the daughter she wants to feel closer to after seeing what happened to the marginally older Sandy, returning to her bedroom where she finds Henry sitting in bed reading papers.

He asks where she's been, not accusingly or even worried, just pleasantly curious: imagine how Don would have reacted in Season 1 or 2 or Betty just disappearing for a day. She simply says she had errands to run, removing her shoes but keeping her coat on she's so tired. Spotting the tear on the shoulder of her sleeve, Henry reaches out and touches it, noting with a smile he knows what somebody is getting next Christmas. She grins, sitting on the bed and finally letting herself relax. She asks if he has eaten and is relieved when he says he had chicken salad, admitting her feet are frozen and she really didn't want to get back up.

Amused, Henry reaches out and places a loving arm around her, and she allows herself to sink into his embrace. This she understands, here she feels grounded again. St. Mark's was far from paradise for her, an alien landscape inhabited by people whose values and mindsets she simply could not wrap her head around. Here she has a sullen daughter... but at least the daughter is here. Here she has her other children. Here she has cleanliness. Here she has structure and sense. Most importantly here she has Henry, who loves her and cares for her and doesn't judge her and (mostly) stands in support of her. Sandy is gone, and she couldn't control that, but here she feels all is still right with the world.... or at least understandable.



When Don arrives at work, Pete has seemingly been waiting to spring on him, approaching all beaming smile and asking how Don is, and giving him a,"You're welcome" response to thanks that Don never gave. He reminds him that the executives from Sheraton are coming in today and with a grimace Don tells him to cancel it. Now Pete might be a little poo poo, but he's absolutely right when he reminds Don that the executives' own bosses will be returning from their holidays next week expecting a report, and Sheraton did just send Don and Megan on a VERY expensive trip. In other words, no, they will NOT be canceling today's meeting, Don is going to have to present something.

With Pete gone, Don grumpily removes his coat and hands it to Dawn, telling her to get Stan along to his office so he can come up with something on the fly. Before he goes though he reaches into his pocket and passes her PFC Dinkins' lighter, saying he has it by accident and asking her to find a way to get it back to his division. She asks if he'd like to include a note but he waves that off, claiming that he simply found it on a barstool.

While Don tries to shed a reminder of his past and catch up to the responsibilities of his present, Roger Sterling attends another therapy session to bitch about the disaster that was his mother's Memorial (The Sterlings do not have a strong track record when it comes to big family events). He insists that the doctor must be on his side, complaining that his ex-wife and daughter double-teaming him with guilt and a demand for money, making a joke of it but very obviously treating himself as the victim in this situation.

The therapist won't rise to that bait though, simply observing that it seems important to Roger that he be on his side, and reminding him that they're not talking about him when Roger asks if he has kids. So instead Roger muses on the fact that his whole life he was jumping off mountains not knowing that he had an invisible parachute: his mother's love was "completely pointless" but always there, something he could always rely on and feel even during the long stretches where he didn't see her or keep in touch. Now it's gone, and that's that, his mother has given him the last of those new experiences he mentioned in the first part of this episode... and all he can look forward to now is slowly (and then quickly) losing everything.

"You feel loss," notes the therapist, and an irritated Roger insists once again that no he's not talking about feeling sad/upset about losing his mother, his problem is that he (believes he) doesn't feel anything. Aiming for disaffected fatalism, he claims that life will eventually end.... and somebody else will get the bill.

Ken walks up the stairs at SCDP to the Accounts floor, passing Bob sitting on the couch in front of the reception desk. Bob calls out a good morning and Ken returns it... then pauses as he recalls the presumptuous action that was quickly overshadowed by Don throwing up in the middle of a testimonial to the deceased.

Returning to Bob, he asks what he is doing out here, is he waiting for somebody important? Bob chuckles and says no he isn't, but if Ken wants to see him he'll drop everything (God this loving guy), he just came out to enjoy the light. His big beaming smile doesn't shift even slightly when Ken ponders if he was maybe meeting customers for his catering business, but his body language does as he spots the receptionist barely restraining a satisfied smirk. He knows he's suddenly in dangerous territory, but his happy smile remains fixed before he cases a quizzical look Ken's way and cheerfully asks what he's talking about.

Ken, who has been in Accounts for a long time and is nobody's fool, isn't willing to play along, simply telling Bob he knows exactly what he's talking about. Bob stands, still smiling, still submissive.... but not on Ken's eye level, buttoning his coat, standing straighter, doing everything he can not to appear weak or (more importantly) guilty. He asks if Ken is "cross" with him, and when Ken just outright states that he sent the big spread of food to the Memorial he acts as if he'd completely forgotten about it and it is no big deal, stating that it just felt like the thing to do.

It wasn't, Ken tells him in no uncertain terms, making it clear he knows exactly what Bob was trying to do, making a point of saying that sending the card with his name on it made it seem like he was invited.... but he wasn't. Aiming for the sympathetic reaction, Bob claims that he was simply thinking back to when his own father died (if it turns out his father is alive I would not be remotely surprised) and how any gesture would have been welcome, insisting that there wasn't meant to be a card, it just somehow.... got made anyway?

Ken has said his bit, he's made his displeasure clear, and he won't be drawn into a back-and-forth that dilutes what this is: a senior man dressing down a junior. Instead he instructs Bob to return to his office, warning him that sitting out here in the open makes it look like he has nothing to do, and he "suspects" that Bob was hoping for the opposite impression to be made.

He leaves, and Bob - who knows that he just got humiliated - pretends to be cheerful and unconcerned in front of the receptionist who is clearly thrilled to witness this (and likely to spread gossip like wildfire), saying it is probably time for him to go catch up on his phone-calls. Behind her in a large central office Cooper can be seen reading a magazine: has he got an office at last after all this time or is this the Accounts Conference Room, given it is in the same place as the one a floor down?

Regardless, his presence says a lot, because Bob sitting within his eyeline was almost guaranteed to have been a deliberate choice on his part. He is going out of his way to be noticed by the Partners at SCDP: first Pete, then Don, then sending the catering to Roger, now "being busy" in the direct view of Cooper. This motherfucker is trying to finesse his way up the ladder, and so far it seems like the only person who isn't put off by it (if they notice him at all) is Pete.



In the conference room downstairs, Jules and Terry from Sheraton apologize for making them squeeze in this meeting between the holidays (Christmas and New Year), assuring them they're not expecting a full presentation. Pete quickly declares that he can say with all honesty that Don hasn't stopped going on about their remarkable property since he got back... which is, well that's a complete lie! Roger offers that though he never stayed at the Royal he did ship out of Hawaii back in 43 and can still smell the gardenias, which is very nice but really not at all on subject, Pete offering a pained,"Thanks for that," before they move on to Don.

Don, who absolutely did NOT want this meeting, opens by buttering them up, making sure to credit Bob Grange and "his delightful wife, Patty" for seeing to he and Megan's every need while exposing them to the local flavor. The younger of the two laughs that he wanted Bob's job but "unfortunately" was promoted, getting a dutiful laugh from all. Don corrects Pete's earlier statement without outright contradicting it, simply saying he isn't sure he actually TALKED about his trip, but there was a feeling he experienced that has stayed with him.

Now it's time for the magic. For the Don Draper special, where he weaves a feeling in the minds and hearts of those watching, dazzles them with his confidence and his handsome, perfect, soothing self that tells them that here is an idea that will reach all their potential customers. It's time to sell an idea, to make them fall under his spell.

And so he does, insisting that ANY vacation away from the winter is nice, but that's not the experience. He's said that again and again when pressed on how he enjoyed the trip, and now he speaks warmly and longingly about how they're not selling a geographical location, not just going to a different place, but how YOU are different.

They listen, enraptured, as he speaks of how it feels to be at the Royal Hawaiian hotel. It is a sensory experience, the air, water and your own body all the same temperature. With a nod to Roger he points out how the fragrance becomes a part of you, the place becomes a part of you, you are enveloped in sensory nirvana where you stop being you and become part of the place itself... and it's bliss, it's pure heaven.

At Don's prompting, Stan reveals the art they quickly put together at their morning meeting, promising it just a sketch, still self-conscious about the rise of photography over art. On the board are blue seas, white sands, and the discarded suit of a holiday-goer and his footprints leading to the water, with the tagline of "Hawaii. The jumping off point."

.......uhhhhhhhhhhhh......

Jules and Terry stare in shock at the art, at the tagline, their unease compounded by Don excitedly talking about the Hawaii legend of where the soul departs the body. Pete is all beaming happiness, because he isn't looking or understanding, he's just doing his job of being happy and supportive like he's just heard the best idea in the world. Jule and Terry keep looking at the art, at the tagline, at Don, and then finally ask,"....so what happened to him?"

Don, usually so quick at picking up on the reactions of his clients, is so caught up in his own spell that he has still failed to see the unease they're feeling. Their carefully chosen questions are designed to dance around the point, Don still failing to grasp what is wrong, actually beaming with pride when the younger of the two says the shot reminds him of the cinema. Except, he's not talking about some wonderful life-affirming movie, he's talking about James Mason committing suicide.

Because, of course, it's death. That is what Don is describing so passionately, so yearningly. The image he is presenting is of a man who has given up and walked into the ocean to die, and the fact it never occurred to him is the most troubling of all. Suddenly all the talk of abandoning yourself to being enveloped into the place, of the bliss of letting yourself go, of no longer being yourself... well it's got a terrifying edge to it. Now his drunken request of Jonesy to tell him if he heard waves when he died takes on even more significance.

But here now in this moment, Don of course is bewildered and insists that this interpretation is a personal association but not what the general public will see, and certainly not what they meant. Roger and Pete are both uneasy though, knowing that the clients are already ready to reject this idea and that any attempt to dissuade them is going to fail. Still, they have to put in their effort, Pete assuring them that they've all looked at this work (which is probably a lie) and none of them thought of that... and then Roger "helps" by suddenly declaring the name of the film, A Star is Born!

But with the wedge of this first complaint having broken the spell, now Jules and Terry are spotting all the other flaws in the work: where is their hotel? Don insists that anybody could make an ad like that, and after an uncomfortable beat gets the reply,"I don't agree" that sets off further alarm bells for Pete. Don can sense that he's losing them too, getting uncharacteristically nervous as he quickly gestures to Sam and agrees they can tilt the POV up to get an arm of the hotel into shot.... which of course leads the younger of the two to point out that is going to mean they also have to include the man in the ocean... and he's going to be naked?

Don has an answer to that though, falling back into his smooth voice again as he explains there would be no man, that he wants the viewer to question what happened to him. "I think people might think that he died," replies the older of the two, just coming right out with it now, this utter disaster of a presentation completely off the rails at this point.

"Maybe he did, and he went to heaven," adds Don, completely destroying any chance to salvage this he might have had,"Maybe that's what this feels like."

Jesus loving Christ, Don.

He's getting argumentative now, when they note this is morbid he growls that heaven is morbid, pointing out that something terrible has to happen for you to get into it. Quietly, aghast, they point out quite reasonably that they don't really want something like that in their ad encouraging people to come enjoy the beach and their hotel. Seeing that there is nothing to be gained from continuing, Pete leaps up and makes a bad pun about how this pitch is itself only a "jumping off point" for their full presentation, signalling an end to the meeting. Jules and Terry are more than happy to escape, standing up while Don continues to try and argue his case, insisting that even their hotel is easy to ignore when pictured in an ad, but that this idea - or at least some version of it - grabs the attention.

They offer back their own pun, assuring Don that he will continue to have THEIR attention, leaving it unsaid that they mean they expect to hear a different idea next time they're in. They promise him they don't mind being provocative, they just don't see this idea working. They shake hands and leave, Pete with them doing his best to soothe any upset, and Roger finally takes the opportunity to grumpily ask if Don did this because he didn't get enough vomiting done at the funeral.

Appalled, Don insists that he had a bug and Roger is apparently already over it, admitting with a grunt that he didn't miss anything. Don turns to Stan, who was probably the only other person who actually saw this work ahead of this meeting, asking if he got a suicide read from it... and is shocked when Stan openly admits that he absolutely did and thought that was what Don was going for! He thinks the suicide bit was a great idea!

Stan leaves, and now it's just Roger and Don. Roger offers a very clear, concise and clever piece of advice. For over 20 years, they successfully sold death for Lucky Strike. How did they do it? They ignored it. With that he leaves, and Don is left alone, a rare failure of a pitch on all fronts, and unable to ignore the reality any longer that the "experience" he kept speaking of with such relish was a death wish.



At the Francis Residence, Henry is eating chicken over the sink and wearing an incredible Christmas sweater when Sally - on the phone of course - asks if she can go to Becky's for New Year's Eve. Wisely, Henry says she should ask her mother, then suggests she bring Becky over here and they can bang pots and pans at midnight. Sally points out it's a party and they can't bring the party here (she never once mentioned the party before this moment!), trying to negotiate terms as if they've already agreed in principle she can go, "telling" Henry that she'll stay here till 9pm and put Bobby and Gene to bed before going over to Becky's.

Henry, a savvy political operator, makes no promises and suggests no stance one way or the other, just repeating that she ask her mother, relieved to hear her announce her return as she comes home and he can escape Sally's cajoling. Betty walks into the room and everybody freezes in shock, because the woman standing across from them is a stranger. Betty Francis.... has black hair now!

Was it simply because of Zal's condescending description of her hair as "bottled"? Or did she just feel the need to do something different after her failure to rescue Sandy? Whatever the case, she stands before them now asking if anything is new, wanting/hoping for their approval and appreciation. She doesn't get it from Bobby, who seethes that he hates it and she's ugly, his entire worldview shaken up by something as seemingly eternal and unchanging as his mother suddenly changing her hair color and warping his entire world view. He races out of the kitchen, followed by Gene who really doesn't know what's going on but figures he'll follow his brother.

"What happened to you?" asks Sally, masking her own surprise/shock at this sudden change to what she has always known, affecting her usual mild contempt for her mother. Henry though simply slowly approaches his wife, reaches out and runs one finger along her hair before asking "Elizabeth Taylor" what she's done with his wife. THAT was what she wanted, the affirmation and excitement she longed for, an enthusiasm for the new look that she had for it herself. Once again, in a topsy-turvy world where everything she knows and understands is changing, Roger continues to be her rock.

Roger comes down the stairs from the Accounts floor with a spring in his step, seemingly feeling good as Caroline stands up and lets him know he is free until lunch but she has to tell him something. He cuts her off, noting with surprise the shoeshine box on her desk, asking what it is doing there. That is what she had to tell him... Giorgio died.

He's stunned, it all made worse by her explaining that his family sent the shoeshine kit here because Roger was his ONLY client, the only one left who actually regularly called to engage his services. He asks what happened but she admits she didn't ask, and silently he lifts the box and takes it into his office, another out-of-nowhere shock loss, just as he told his therapist he's reached the stage in his life where he loses things (and people!).

Inside his office (largely designed by a wife he has now divorced), he sits down and opens the kit, lifting out a brush and staring down at it. An inconsequential thing, property of a man he saw every so often to shine his shoes and then move on, just an everyday, nothing item.

He bursts into tears.

At last the dam has broken, the man who insisted he felt nothing despite clearly being immensely pained and miserable about the loss of his mother has reached his breaking point. Giorgio's death was the straw that broke the camel's back, as these things so often are the actual thing that set him off was something incredibly minor. Roger sobs alone in his own office, for his dead mother, for Giorgio, but most of all for himself, an aging man who has nobody, either due to the inevitable passage of time or as a result of his own actions finally coming back after all this time to bite him on the rear end. He weeps bitter tears, and it is perhaps the healthiest thing we have ever seen him do.



New Year's Eve comes, and with it the threatened party at the Draper's apartment. This time though it's a muted, quiet affair until the giant surprise party that kicked off Season 1. It's three couples including Don and Megan, all from the building, Dr. Rosen and his wife Sylvia along with two others, Dave and Cathy. They're all settled around a fondue pot, the hot new fad slightly before it became synonymous with swinger parties, Dave and Cathy exclaiming how happy they are they can simply stagger downstairs once they're done. Cathy comments slyly to Don that she might just get undressed in the elevator as she passes him her glass for a top-up, and he wisely leaves that uncommented on.

Megan explains she got the fondue pot at Bloomingdale's, exclaiming how you can get ANYTHING there, which leads to a story from Dave at Cathy's prompting about the scandal of one of his "flamboyant" work associates who got arrested there. He explains that the men's room are a well known locale for a "certain type of assignation" and the store detectives regularly check under the stalls, so his "flamboyant" regional sales manager took two shopping bags in and put his feet in them!

Rosen is delighted at this, laughing that it's very clever though Dave admits he has no idea how his manager ended up getting caught. The tone quickly changes though when Sylvia asks them how old their children are (7 and 11, the wife eventually recalls), explaining that she might just go kiss them goodnight herself because she's so badly missing her own son, a Freshman in Michigan who didn't even bother to come home for the holidays.

Megan announces she is going to switch the cheese for chocolate in the pot, but first she wants to take them all to Hawaii since it's snowing outside. Don holds back a groan and jokes that they were having a good time, and Megan smiles at the joke but exhibits real concern as she points out everything is set up to play. The others are keen to see the photos too, despite even by this point showing holiday snaps was normally seen as an act to be dreaded. Dutifully they place the projector (the carousel that Don once so passionately spoke of) and show off the shots taken of their recent holiday, a place that now surely must be tainted in Don's mind with death.

They all oooh over the beautiful shots, some upside down of course, all with that familiar lack of professional flare seen in home-snaps: bad lighting, no white balance, rarely well-framed. One shot in particular stands out though, Don standing in pride of place giving away the bride at a beach wedding of PFC Dinkins to his Mexican bride who "met him halfway".

Megan happily tells them the story, though she clearly only knows the rough details herself, and the others, charmed, coo over how romantic that is and ask how that happened. Don simply presses his lips together in a smile, says nothing, and moves on to the next shot without a word.

Working late at SCDP (on New Year's Eve!), Stan is helping pass the time as he sketches by chatting on the phone and sharing office gossip with... Peggy Olson!?! Yes, their working relationship is over and yet somehow in spite of their rough start they've remained friends. She's working late too over at CGC, which is less of a surprise, and they're having a laugh over Ginsberg getting yelled at by Sugarberry Hams and using the fact he was Jewish to excuse his lack of knowledge about ham!

For the first time since Bert Cooper casually revealed his knowledge, somebody else reveals that Roger and Joan's relationship was far from the secret they thought it was. Stan ponders whether they're still sleeping together, noting that she seemingly ignored him despite his mother dying. Peggy, more diplomatic, reminds him that they only suspect the two were sleeping together, but Stan insists he has pictures... in his mind!

He excuses himself to get coffee, joking that he can get her some, insisting that she stay on the line because he's not hanging up. She's not left alone for long though, as a voice calls out,"Happy New Year," and she turns to discover Ted Chaough standing in her doorway, dressed in a tuxedo. Surprised, she asks what he is doing here and he points out that he owed at least a drop-in once he found out there were four people working late at the office on New Year's Eve!

Still surprised, she starts to explain then asks if he got her message, and he reminds her with a grin that he got ALL of them (the pastor wasn't lying!), and while he's sorry he didn't reply he WAS on a retreat with his wife, and he owed her committing to it for all she puts up with from him letting work dominate most of the rest of the year.

Is.... is Ted Chaough.... a good person!?!

He asks if she has any solutions and she admits she may have something, feeding in a spool of film and explaining it's from an outtake when their actor was clowning around with the headsets. Watching Abe bopping along reminded her of seeing it happen on the day, and how at the time she was irritated with the actor wasting time... but now she sees the potential. He's grooving, enjoying and silently mouthing to music only he can hear... and he's NOT talking, which means they can voiceover without issue. The only thing she needed was the new tagline, and she's come up with,"Koss Headphones: Sound so sharp and clear, you can actually see it."

Ted considers, and then says something she could have only dreamed of, simply stating that it takes a crisis to bring out work this good. He likes it? He does, and he doesn't ask to see the new voice-over, he has complete confidence in what she has produced and she has proven worthy of that. Delighted, not quite able to hold eye contact even though she wants to drink up the praise, she can barely hold in her grin as she tells him she hopes she didn't ruin his evening.

She didn't ruin his, but he does have a (genuinely pleasant) criticism to make: she has people working late on NEW YEAR'S EVE! If she knew she has something, she should have let them go! Surprised, she exclaims that they all know they can leave whenever they want, and is genuinely surprised when Ted - genuinely surprised himself that she doesn't know - tells her that no, they can't. Because she still hasn't quite grasped it yet.... SHE is the boss. She's Copy Chief, and that doesn't just mean telling people off and giving warnings and pressing for more work. It means an expectation from those under her that they have to be there while she's working, that leaving before her is a sign of laziness or letting the side down. She needs to be the one to tell them they can go, to make it clear that she doesn't expect them to stay just because they're there.

"You're good in a crisis," he says after a beat, not wanting to leave it on a sour note and also expressing genuine admiration. He knew she was a good hire, that bringing her on as Copy Chief was the right move. But he didn't know quite HOW good until just now. She just salvaged a Superbowl ad, coming up with something even better than her original idea in only a few days after the first was scrapped by baseless paranoia from an unhelpful client.

"Happy New Year," he tells her, and leaves, and happy Peggy stands letting the praise and endorsement of her quality sink in.... till she hears a delighted voice over the phone cackle,"He liiiiikes you!" It's Stan of course, who returned from his coffee in time to hear her boss lavishing her in praise, something he rarely experiences at SCDP. She asks how much he heard, and he cackles that he heard all of it, making her smile too, not just because it's funny Stan overheard, but because she's happy. Genuinely happy.



At the Drapers, it's only them and the Rosens left now, the other couple having dropped out before midnight as they suspected they might. Megan brings four glasses of Galliano, the drink that Jonesy bought them as thanks for their part in saving his life. Rosen admits that he's happy somebody else is getting gifts, noting he can't stand the constant bootlicking, and Sylvia gently chides him, pointing out he's rightfully grateful.

She offers a "Cent'anni!" as a toast, explaining it means "A hundred years" after Rosen quips that it's Italian for "L'chaim"! Now it's just the two of them, he can't help but ponder what Dave might have paid for his apartment, Sylvia gasping at him not to speculate like that... so he openly asks Don what he paid for his!

"75," Don admits without a moment's hesitation, and Rosen considers that enormous sum (620k in 2022, so it's a goddamn bargain) before pointing out that they are a floor higher than the Rosens, meaning of course that he paid much less.

The phone rings and Megan cackles as she checks her watch and realizes they were having such a good time that they completely missed midnight, it's 1am! She goes to get the phone, figuring it is probably her mother, while Don and Rosen joke that it might be Dave and Cathy face down in the hall, too drunk to make it to bed.

It's less inviting than that though, it's Rosen's service, and despite the heavy snow outside he gives no argument as he listens to the other end, then agrees that he'll be there soon. Sylvia offers no objection, used to this life now (if he was on call, should he have been drinking?) and a worried Don offers to come down with him, claiming he needs to get cigarettes.

Only Megan says what must be on everybody's minds: it's 1am in a snowstorm on a holiday on a Sunday, he's never going to get a cab! Sylvia tells him not to bother to try and talk him out of it, and soon Don and Rosen are down in the storage shed (the door of which is marked,"NO STORAGE"!) collecting up Rosen's ski boots and skis, as he plans to ski his way to the hospital.

Don, buzzed but nowhere near the sloppy mess he was with Jonesy, takes the rare opportunity to ask Rosen a question that has been on his mind almost as much as Jonesy's experience: what's it like to have someone's life in your hands? It's a question Rosen has probably been asked many times, and he offers what is probably the standard answer, that it is a privilege and an honor to be trusted with such a responsibility. It's not really what Don wanted to hear, I don't think... but what DID he want to hear?

They get the door open to outside, Don started by how heavy the snow is, and Rosen admits that it might be a good resolution to quit smoking if he really intends to go out for cigarettes now. But Don having come this far with him, Rosen decides to throw him a bone and give him a more honest answer to his usual question. Life-and-death has never bothered him, guys like the two of them get paid because they have that attitude.

"Us?" asks Don, surprised again that Rosen has likened the work they do, and he explains that Don is paid to think about thinks others don't want to think about : how to get into people's heads and make them do (and buy) what you want, how to make them feel, how to make them want.... and Rosen is paid NOT to think about those things.

"People will do anything to alleviate their anxiety" he finishes, and with that he's out into the snow, skis on, walking bravely and without hesitation into the depths of the storm without a backward look. And what does Don do? How does he alleviate his anxiety? By going out into the snow to get cigarettes? No, he goes up via the cargo lift he identified as safe passage during his fever dream, he steps up to a doorway where he is let in, a female hand taking his and leading him into the bedroom.... the bedroom of Sylvia Rosen.

Don Draper you unbelievable piece of poo poo.

Yes, this rear end in a top hat, this flaming sack of poo poo, he's having an affair. Not just any affair, not just cheating on his wife, but cuckolding a man he genuinely likes and respects. Not just some woman he met at work or through business or out at a bar, as bad as that would be, but a woman who lives literally one floor below the home of him and his beautiful, devoted, caring and successful wife!

This is even worse than when he was having an affair with Miss Farrell, the former schoolteacher of his daughter who lived only a couple of blocks away. And it's monstrous, it's contemptible, and to make matters worse as they lie in bed post-sex and she asks him what his New Year's Resolution will be, he tells her it would be to stop doing this. Because he KNOWS it is wrong, but here he loving is still doing it anyway. After the same thing cost him (atop other issues) his marriage to Betty, and why? loving why? Because he's a pouting man-child upset that his wife hasn't subsumed all personal ambition/desire/goals to fit into what made him and him alone happy.

All affairs are in some way an insult to the spouse/significant other, but this one - like the affair with Miss Farrell - display an utter contempt. Don has had this woman in his house, she and Megan are friends, he respects and likes her husband, and yet here he is, making GBS threads where he eats yet again, making all the same mistakes he has made in the past. Not just having a sexual affair but an emotional one, he was reading Dante's Inferno at her suggestion right there on the beach next to his (stunningly beautiful!) wife in Hawaii. He sees the book made him think of her, acting as if Megan - bright, outgoing, more than capable of holding her own in an argument, insightful, personable, challenging in ways that motivate and drive him - is somehow lacking in that respect.

Megan isn't Betty, and even Betty was largely (not entirely) a product of the way Don wanted her to be. But his thin excuse for the affair with Miss Farrell holds no water at all here. This is just deliberately playing with fire, another example of Don's "death wish", the one he mocked and dismissed way back in the first episode of season 1 as ridiculous.

So he eventually returns home, collecting a paper marking the end of a "violent year". He returns to his bed, where his loving wife lays sleeping. He lies beside her, she cuddles in close, wishes him Happy New Year and gives him a kiss unaware that while she thought he was buying cigarettes he was kissing (and far more) their good friend Sylvia one floor below. He wishes her a Happy New Year too, and she settles into a blissful sleep, convinced that life will only continue to be good and get better: she's working, he's working, they're in love, they are are professionally and personally satisfied. Don simply lies and stares at nothing, his insides roiling with revulsion that didn't stop him from screwing Sylvia despite knowing it was wrong.

Once again, the past has come back to haunt Don, his past actions as a philandering piece of poo poo back in full force, but compressing the years of infidelities that lead to dancing with fire with Miss Farrell into an affair with a woman one floor below them barely two years into their marriage. Why? WHY!?! Why does Don do this?

This two-part 1st episode of Season 6 strongly featured death, both Roger's reaction to it as well as Don's seeming death wish. Don didn't fully grasp it until it came up in the meeting, but on a subconscious level he knew, considering he asked Jonesy about waves and tropical sun when drunkenly asking about his near-death experience. Does Don Draper WANT to die?

No. No he doesn't.

Death is change. Whether for living person or those left behind, death marks an end point, a place where things are no longer what they were. That's what Don wants, and death has frequently been the way these moments are marked in his life. His "death" in Korea that allowed him to become Don Draper. The death of his marriage to Betty. The death of his employment at Sterling Cooper, allowing him to start fresh and build something of his own from the (heavily supported) ground up. The death of his single life when he threw himself with reckless abandon into proposing to Megan.

Don is forever trying to escape things, and he always tries to do it dramatically by changing his situation of his location. He wanted to flee to California with Rachel Menken. He wanted to get on that train and escape to somewhere else when faced with the numbing suburban status of married lie/fatherhood at Sally's birthday party. He disappeared on a business trip to California to hang out with the Jet Set before heading off to see Anna, and only returned at all after being convinced that no he shouldn't stick around and get a job selling modified hotrods. He accepted Betty's demand for divorce to concentrate on SCDP.

He's an all-or-nothing guy, and he hates compromise, because part of presenting the image he has so carefully cultivated is being in control of every aspect of it. That's part of why he has been so sulky about Megan leaving SCDP, about pursing acting, about her success in it. Intellectually he knows he has to be better, that he should try to be happy for her, that it would only kill their relationship to force her to stay where she was. But like Roger he's also a spoiled child (despite his upbringing in poverty), and so he's back to making all the same mistakes again, pursing that death wish, desperate for change even though he knows it can only end in disaster or grief and he won't be any happier. What he experienced in Hawaii was the dissolving of his "self" where he no longer knew where he ended and the rest of the world started. It was a remarkable experience for him, because for once he was simply "there", existing in the world, no longer holding himself apart or having to put on a front. He was so excited by his pitch, because he thought that was an experience that would be universal to most (who could afford a trip to Hawaii), never grasping that pushing for somebody to abandon the self to the place was essentially the same thing as wishing to die, which is absolutely the universal message that would have been taken by ANYBODY from his pitch to Sheraton.

Happy New Year to Don Draper, leaving a violent year behind but already ready to gently caress up an entirely new one.



Episode Index

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at 08:31 on Jan 12, 2022

R. Guyovich
Dec 25, 1991



jerusalem being this mad at the EXISTENCE of don and sylvia's affair makes me greatly look forward to favors

kalel
Jun 19, 2012



Remember all that stuff I said about Don being adorable with Dr. Rosen? Yeah I meant to type "deplorable." Got dang autocorrect!

Bismack Billabongo
Oct 9, 2012

Wet


Don sucks so bad in this one lol. Roger sucks too but for understandable reasons.

Bobby b is a hero.

Paper Lion
Dec 13, 2009






Jerusalem posted:

He sits up in bed, alone which always ends up making him miserable (and yet it's a state he so frequently pursues)

Kierkegaard posted:

In addition to my other numerous acquaintances, I have one more intimate confidant. ... My depression is the most faithful mistress I have known - no wonder, then, that I return the love.

JethroMcB
Jan 23, 2004

We're normal now.
We love your family.


I liked Don's ad, but I'm so dim that I wouldn't read it as a suicide. Dude just go so amped about being in Hawaii he went for a naked swim.

Between Don spending a day getting sloppy drunk in front of his coworkers and sleeping with his neighbor's wife simply because she's there, the bloom is fully off the rose at this point. This isn't a glamorous, suave guy, this is just a very sad man trying to fill a void he doesn't understand or even want to attempt to analyze.

Jerusalem posted:

Betty Francis.... has black hair now!

Was it simply because of Zal's condescending description of her hair as "bottled"? Or did she just feel the need to do something different after her failure to rescue Sandy? Whatever the case, she stands before them now asking if anything is new, wanting/hoping for their approval and appreciation.

Betty's story is really loose in this episode and doesn't quite click for me, even though it's a great, weird detour. My take on her new look is that it's directly related to Zal's "It kills you to not be in control" barb - she is frustrated at feeling powerless, both in her inability to help Sandy and in her relationship with Sally, who is in full-on hostile teenager mode. She needs to assert herself somehow, and her appearance is the most immediate way she can think to do that.

(There's also feels like there's a parallel with how Don can't rid himself of PFC Dinkins' lighter, while Betty fights to hold on to Sandy's violin only to abandon it immediately once she has it. Not sure how to read that one, though)

kalel
Jun 19, 2012



Since Jerusalem brought up Ray Abruzzo in part 1, I'd like to shine a light on Linda Cardellini, who plays Sylvia:

quote:

Linda Edna Cardellini is an American actress. In television, she is known for her leading roles in the teen drama Freaks and Geeks, the medical drama ER, the drama thriller Bloodline, and the tragicomedy Dead to Me, the latter of which earned her a nomination for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. ... Her voice work includes the animated series Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, Regular Show, Gravity Falls, and Sanjay and Craig. In film, Cardellini is best known for her portrayal of Velma Dinkley in Scooby-Doo and its sequel Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, and her supporting roles in Legally Blonde, Brokeback Mountain, Grandma's Boy, Kill The Irishman, Avengers: Age of Ultron, The Founder, Green Book, A Simple Favor, and Avengers: Endgame.

Xealot
Nov 25, 2002

Showdown in the Galaxy Era.



Bismack Billabongo posted:

Don sucks so bad in this one lol. Roger sucks too but for understandable reasons.

I'm convinced that people's distaste for S6 is mostly this: Don was trying to be better in S5 and now he's just leaning hard into being a piece of poo poo. The show isn't any lower quality, it's just hard to watch Don make such terrible loving choices again. "I thought we were past this, Draper!"

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



kalel posted:

Since Jerusalem brought up Ray Abruzzo in part 1, I'd like to shine a light on Linda Cardellini, who plays Sylvia:

Oh poo poo I didn't recognize her AT ALL! It's Velma! :vince:

kalel posted:

Remember all that stuff I said about Don being adorable with Dr. Rosen? Yeah I meant to type "deplorable." Got dang autocorrect!
Seriously. I was so happy that Don made a new friend and then he does this bullshit :negative:

Mover
Jun 30, 2008

Goodness no, now that wouldn't do at all!


Stanís ďof COURSE itís about suicide, thatís why itís greatĒ is where I started to like him

aBagorn
Aug 26, 2004


Mover posted:

Stanís ďof COURSE itís about suicide, thatís why itís greatĒ is where I started to like him

brushwad
Dec 25, 2009


Jerusalem posted:

Oh poo poo I didn't recognize her AT ALL! It's Velma! :vince:

Seriously. I was so happy that Don made a new friend and then he does this bullshit :negative:

Jerusalem, if you recognized Linda Cardellini as Velma and not Linday Weir, "Freaks and Geeks" should be your next blindwatch thread.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



I do like to imagine Stan listening to Don describe what he wanted and sitting there thinking,"Holy poo poo we're really doing this? This is so loving great, I'm actually getting to do something meaningful and dark and weird I didn't know the Boss had it in him! :hellyeah:" :allears:

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







Jerusalem posted:

He sits up in bed, alone which always ends up making him miserable (and yet it's a state he so frequently pursues)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtvJaNeELic

Lady Radia
Jul 13, 2021

Despite everything, it's still you.


kalel posted:

Since Jerusalem brought up Ray Abruzzo in part 1, I'd like to shine a light on Linda Cardellini, who plays Sylvia:

scooby doo mystery incorporated was this weird Incredibly Great piece of media in between the usual scooby doo garbage, itís awesome she had a part in it

GoutPatrol
Oct 17, 2009

*Stupid Moddie*



Mover posted:

Stanís ďof COURSE itís about suicide, thatís why itís greatĒ is where I started to like him

Stan's beard is really when he became good Stan.

Blood Nightmaster
Sep 6, 2011

“また遊んであげるわ!”


God I totally never realized Linda Cardellini was in Legally Blonde but she was great in that too

Blood Nightmaster fucked around with this message at 02:38 on Jan 13, 2022

KellHound
Jul 23, 2007

I commend my soul to any god that can find it.

I can now post this link without spoilers! https://www.wired.com/2013/04/mad-men-season-six-premiere/ This was a thing my friend wrote for wired where they had to review the season 6 premiere without having seen any other mad men.

Devorum
Jul 30, 2005



KellHound posted:

I can now post this link without spoilers! https://www.wired.com/2013/04/mad-men-season-six-premiere/ This was a thing my friend wrote for wired where they had to review the season 6 premiere without having seen any other mad men.

This article is worth if for no other reason than introducing me to bushy-hair Vincent Kartheiser as Connor from Angel.

JethroMcB
Jan 23, 2004

We're normal now.
We love your family.


KellHound posted:

I can now post this link without spoilers! https://www.wired.com/2013/04/mad-men-season-six-premiere/ This was a thing my friend wrote for wired where they had to review the season 6 premiere without having seen any other mad men.

So did your friend eat multiple hats or what

Also very confused as to why Wired has replaced header images on old articles with a picture of a redhead in a bikini but whatever gets pageviews

KellHound
Jul 23, 2007

I commend my soul to any god that can find it.

JethroMcB posted:

So did your friend eat multiple hats or what

Also very confused as to why Wired has replaced header images on old articles with a picture of a redhead in a bikini but whatever gets pageviews

Well the point of the article as more "can you watch mad men season 6 with no previous mad men context?" and the answer is kinda yes.

Them watching these episodes, then seeing the first episode after, did get them to watch mad men with me regularly until they were caught up. So worked out great for me. I had a pal to over analyze mad men with!

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?



KellHound posted:

I can now post this link without spoilers! https://www.wired.com/2013/04/mad-men-season-six-premiere/ This was a thing my friend wrote for wired where they had to review the season 6 premiere without having seen any other mad men.

This was a fun read, I loved likening it to having dinner with somebody else's dysfunctional family :)

Benagain
Oct 10, 2007

Can you see that I am serious?


Fun Shoe

Honestly the thing that's stood out to me the most revisiting the episodes is how much Stan grew over the course of the series, like I for real was shocked when he was introduced because I did not remember him being that much of an rear end in a top hat.

stromboni
Dec 22, 2008


ďObnoxious jock turned likable hairy stonerĒ feels extremely authentic too

Benagain
Oct 10, 2007

Can you see that I am serious?


Fun Shoe

Imagine how relaxed don would be if he smoked more weed and grew a beard.

Like an alternate timeline where he switches to weed instead of alcoholism after smoking in the first episode and just shows up to client meetings baked out of his mind.

Edit: imagine don and Roger doing acid together God drat it we were robbed

DaveWoo
Aug 14, 2004



Fun Shoe

stromboni posted:

ďObnoxious jock turned likable hairy stonerĒ feels extremely authentic too

Yeah, Stan's evolution feels pretty natural. The weirder character shift for me is Ted Chaough - he's introduced in Season 4 as an rear end in a top hat, but then we see him again in Season 5 and he's suddenly a decent guy.

ANOTHER SCORCHER
Aug 12, 2018


This is all one big thing.


DaveWoo posted:

Yeah, Stan's evolution feels pretty natural. The weirder character shift for me is Ted Chaough - he's introduced in Season 4 as an rear end in a top hat, but then we see him again in Season 5 and he's suddenly a decent guy.

Isn't he only an rear end in a top hat to Don, who is the professional rival he's gunning after? It makes sense he would behave differently among those who know him.

roomtone
Jul 1, 2021

The rising star of GBS!


i thought about that, but there is one scene of him being dickish to his staff in season 4 as well in the scooter pitch episode. it's not out of hand or anything, but clearly a different take on who this guy is in his own space than we're seeing now.
i mean there's also the fact that he's been trying to seduce pete and peggy away since then so he's maybe being nicer than he would to underlings he doesn't value?

it's a big enough change to foreground that the writers' plan for him changed at some point but not really big enough to break the character, i think. Harry's change from s1 - s2 and beyond is bigger, in the opposite direction.

JethroMcB
Jan 23, 2004

We're normal now.
We love your family.


Remember, Ted was being a dick during the Honda pitch because he knew SCDP was also vying for the account and thought Draper was going to one-up him. Even then, it was a moment of frustration being driven by his petty one-sided feud.

stromboni
Dec 22, 2008


That he eventually turns out to be in love with Peggy also seems like it kind of colors how nice he is acting around her right now

KellHound
Jul 23, 2007

I commend my soul to any god that can find it.

Jerusalem posted:

This was a fun read, I loved likening it to having dinner with somebody else's dysfunctional family :)

Stan saying the ad being about suicide is what makes it great was the first impression my friend had of Stan. And because of that, he's their favorite character.

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Xealot
Nov 25, 2002

Showdown in the Galaxy Era.



I don't remember when this happens (possibly S6E5), but my favorite Stan scene is definitely when Roger's weird LSD friend shows up with the insurance ad idea about a molotov cocktail, and Stan is just laughing his rear end off, totally thrilled about the whole thing. It's exactly what I'd be like if I was in that room, so I've been super endeared towards Stan ever since.

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