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Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


I had the impression that she was okay with her Aunt's gift being returned, but with the mindset that the money would be used to buy something else for the two of them to share as a married couple, essentially creating a "new" gift from her Aunt.

Instead, Pete turned a gift for the two of them from a beloved family member into a toy purely for himself.

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Yoshi Wins
Jul 14, 2013


I’m pretty sure they just got one, and Trudy wanted to keep it. She tearfully says “that was a wedding gift” and “that was for us!” She regarded it sentimentally.

Pete lied to his coworkers about being a dutiful husband.

Another hint is that he didn’t know to check under her name in the registry. As we will see, Trudy is very good with details. If she asked him to make a return, she would have told him his registries work.

Gaius Marius
Oct 9, 2012


They got two. They're using it in the table setting in an episode in season 2

Yoshi Wins
Jul 14, 2013


I think he bought a replacement to placate her (what if her aunt and uncle come over on some holiday and ask if they’ve been using their gift?) and kept the rifle because he liked his toy, but I can’t think of any way to prove it. Whatever the case, he certainly wasn’t a good husband doing a favor for his wife on his lunch break.

HppyCmpr
May 8, 2011


I'm pretty sure Jerusalem has the right read on it, it's more than likely that Pete wouldn't have been interested in getting an explanation of how a registry works; even though Trudy is good with details.
I think Pete did think of it as doing a favour for his wife, it falls in line with his romanticized notion of marriage; especially in the honeymoon peroid he's in. The issue is when encountered with the reality of the situation he found it unsatisfying and so decided to spend the store credit to make himself feel better.

He even offhandly mentions he likes the concept of them.

HppyCmpr fucked around with this message at 14:26 on Oct 13, 2020

Solkanar512
Dec 28, 2006



Also, that $22 then is around $193 now. I don’t know anyone in a long term, joint-finances relationship that would just spend nearly $200 on themselves on a whim without discussing it first, especially when that money was likely expected to go elsewhere.

Gaius Marius
Oct 9, 2012


They both come from families that are (theoretically) loaded though. I don't think they see two hundred bucks the way we do.

Solkanar512
Dec 28, 2006



Gaius Marius posted:

They both come from families that are (theoretically) loaded though. I don't think they see two hundred bucks the way we do.

Hmm, that's a fair point.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Gaius Marius posted:

They both come from families that are (theoretically) loaded though. I don't think they see two hundred bucks the way we do.

Tangentially though, I think it is interesting that Pete is probably feeling the money pinch for the first time in his life now, considering he's now got a hefty mortgage plus feeling like he has to pay back his father-in-law regardless of what he tells him otherwise. He's taken on a 30k apartment which is basically 10 years of his current salary, and he is completely unaware that his position at Sterling Cooper is secure since he bought Roger's line that he's only still employed because of Don Draper. Sure he knows he's got a hefty inheritance coming when his parents die, but that could be decades away which at his age probably might as well be forever.

If it wasn't for his expense account, he'd probably be pinching every penny. As it is he's got to brown-nose his way through evenings with clients, spending money that isn't his for THEIR enjoyment.

He's still a scumbag though!

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at 05:21 on Oct 14, 2020

Gaius Marius
Oct 9, 2012


Yeah. I find pete one of the most fascinating characters in the show. In so many ways he's the opposite of don. The same way dons upbringing and early life make him do some awful poo poo. Pete's money and class are an absolute noose around his neck. His weird fantasy about being a hunter isn't just about his hosed up view of masculinity but also about being able to avoid all the parties, socializing, and pageantry that was forced on him by his birth name. A return to a simple life.

Edit:. I just realized thinking of the hunter thing pete's got. He sees his ideal self as a badass hunting grizzlys. But the best his true self can manage is buying a rifle used to keep rabbits out of the garden, and even then he's admonished by his wife. I love the writing in this show

Gaius Marius fucked around with this message at 07:24 on Oct 14, 2020

Ainsley McTree
Feb 19, 2004




I don't know how, but I definitely somehow missed the detail that the whole staircase thing was a deliberate act of sabotage on Don's part, I thought it was actually just coincidence. In retrospect I suppose it wasn't that subtle, oops

I'm also happy to see that someone else found "It's a chip n' dip! We got two." funny enough to make an entire video about it, something about that line read is just hilarious to me. I suppose because they deliberately wrote it to be memorable.

Yoshi Wins
Jul 14, 2013


Yeah, my friends and I have been quoting the chip ‘n dip dialogue for years. It’s loving brilliant.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


He gets so excited explaining how it works while people just stare at him utterly confused as to why he's so enamored with it

"The dip was sour cream with little pieces of brown onion in it."
"....you'll have to give me that recipe...."

Xealot
Nov 25, 2002

Showdown in the Galaxy Era.



Solkanar512 posted:

Also, that $22 then is around $193 now. I don’t know anyone in a long term, joint-finances relationship that would just spend nearly $200 on themselves on a whim without discussing it first, especially when that money was likely expected to go elsewhere.

Yeah, the literal value of the $200 probably doesn't matter to either of them, but it's definitely lovely that it was a wedding gift for both of them that he repurposed into a toy for himself.

I remember thinking he was genuinely wealthy in the first few episodes, but it becomes clear that this isn't true, yeah. Looking like some upper-crust high society elite is just one of the many things he aspires to be, and I love it when it fails to convince or impress people ("Peter Dyckman Campbell!" *eye rolls*) I guess this is speaking to a historical reality that played out in the US at this time...decades earlier, I'm sure his name-dropping might've gotten him somewhere in a Great Gatsby sense. But by the 60's, he's the scion of a family clearly in decline, dependent on his much wealthier wife's family and constantly one-upped by "self-made" people in his orbit who don't have any generational wealth to fall back on.

GoutPatrol
Oct 17, 2009

Coal Jobs for the Coal God


Xealot posted:

Yeah, the literal value of the $200 probably doesn't matter to either of them, but it's definitely lovely that it was a wedding gift for both of them that he repurposed into a toy for himself.

snip

I don't think alot of that info comes out until season 2, so I'm putting this warning in spoiler text.

The Cooper conversation about having a Dyckman in the company rings very true to Old New York, and something that by the end of the 60s was definitely dying out. I don't think they ever mention or connect Bert Cooper or his sister to it, but there was an old and powerful Cooper Family in Manhattan, but the Dyckmans with that Dutch name would be old, old money, real Social Register types.

The Klowner
Apr 20, 2019

I see past the sham that is society, and I'm into some incredibly fucked up shit.

So glad I found this thread, I just finished my third run through of the series earlier this year. The latest episode is fantastic, I love seeing Don and Roger's relationship develop.

Solkanar512
Dec 28, 2006



GoutPatrol posted:

I don't think alot of that info comes out until season 2, so I'm putting this warning in spoiler text.

The Cooper conversation about having a Dyckman in the company rings very true to Old New York, and something that by the end of the 60s was definitely dying out. I don't think they ever mention or connect Bert Cooper or his sister to it, but there was an old and powerful Cooper Family in Manhattan, but the Dyckmans with that Dutch name would be old, old money, real Social Register types.

This is the only post I'll make about it because I don't want to derail, but I still can't loving believe that the Social Register still exists! Like, what the gently caress, how can there be people who still think this is meaningful AND don't already know the sorts of folks who would normally be included?

Also, from the Wiki. This gives an idea of the sorts of attitudes at play here, so it's kinda maybe if you squint on topic.

quote:

Inclusion
Traditionally, wealth or fame have been insufficient for inclusion in the Social Register; Kim Kardashian and Gloria Vanderbilt were never listed and Donald Trump, prior to his election as President of the United States, was also not included.[8][15] A 1985 article reported that "enrollees need plenty of green (money), blue (blood), and lily white".[15]

Listing in the Social Register has typically been through birth: Children born to a person listed in the Social Register are, in turn, added. Persons have also been permitted to apply for inclusion in the Social Register. Such applications require letters of sponsorship from five persons already listed, followed by vetting from the advisory committee. In 1997, a spokesman for the Social Register's then 25-member advisory committee described the criteria by which a person might be added to the directory.[12] The committee, he said, asked themselves "would one want to have dinner with this person on a regular basis"?[12]

The President of the United States and Vice President of the United States are, by custom, always added.[16]

Exclusion
Reasons for removal from the Social Register have traditionally been opaque.[17] In the early 20th century, historian Dixon Wecter observed that those excluded tended to be persons unfavorably reported upon in the press and that, as long as one's private life "keeps out of the [newspaper's] columns" the risk of exclusion was low.[18] The Social Register also tends to exclude people of "illegitimate" industries, such as motion pictures, regardless of wealth or social status.

A Social Register spokesman reported, in 1985, that elderly persons who failed to remit the questionnaire sent to listed persons by the register for eleven consecutive years were removed. In addition, someone who married a person who was not, themselves, listed in the Social Register might have been dropped.[19]

As of 1988, about 35,000 individuals were included in the Social Register.[3] By 2014, this number was reported to be approximately 25,000.[2]

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Season 1, Episode 8 - The Hobo Code
Written by Chris Provenzano, Directed by Phil Abraham

Salvatore Romano posted:

I know what I want.

Pete Campbell arrives early for work at Sterling Cooper, though of course not as early as Hollis, the elevator operator. As the doors are sliding closed a woman's voice calls out for them to wait, it's Peggy Olson who has also come in early. Her and Pete make small talk, she's come in at 7am because she's nervous about Belle Jolie seeing the copy she wrote in a pitch meeting today. Pete has come in early because he'll be moving into his new apartment today and has to take time off work later to supervise the operation.

Hollis apologetically informs them the service elevator is not operating and asks if they mind sharing the lift with a janitor. They offer no objection, but Pete is clearly less than impressed to have the black janitor not just visible to him but sharing his space. He's used to the maintenance staff being invisible, he just comes in to work each day and the place is clean and he doesn't think anything of it. He complains to Peggy about spending a day watching other men work, and when the janitor gets off on his floor, Pete also takes a moment to complain about the lift being "the local" - Pete is used to being the "express", an important person who gets taken where he wants to go without delay. Hollis is quick to apologize for the great crime of making Pete stand in an elevator with another man.

Once on their own floor, Pete sits quietly in his office doing no actual work. Peggy comes by and hesitates a moment before asking if he wants her to grab him a coffee. He declines, but asks her to step inside his office, and then to close the door. Quickly grasping what is going to happen, she's not alarmed, far from it. Rather, she points out that the office is empty and the door doesn't necessarily need to be closed. He insists though, and once they're safely ensconced gives her the line thousands (millions?) of married/partnered up men have given women who are NOT their wife/partner: does she know how hard it is for him to see her walking around every day and not to be able to have her?

He kisses her, and she reciprocates. She's in ecstasy in fact. Early on in the series I pondered whether Peggy was more calculating than she appeared, but it's since appeared far more likely that she's just - for some unfathomable reason - legitimately attracted to a slimy little worm like Pete Campbell. She's in ecstasy as he kisses her neck, places her on the couch and pulls it up against the door (like Paul Kinsey once tried to do with her). She eagerly accepts his advances, thrilled both by the unexpected reality of her fantasy coming true as well as the adrenaline hit of doing this in the workplace. Pete is excited too, struggling with her skirt and tearing her collar in his eagerness to get her blouse open. She has him pull the skirt up and in about as least a romantic manner as possible they have sex, alone in an empty office.

Well, apart from that invisible janitor. He passes by outside while cleaning up, stopping to smirk slightly at the "secret" couple visible in silhouette through the glass as they have their hurried, animalistic sex. If the train was "the local", it seems Pete's office is the zoo.



The sex done, Peggy is adjusting her clothes when Pete decides to come clean about something: he hasn't read her Belle Jolie copy. To his surprise, she's relieved. She admits that when he didn't say anything to her about it, she assumed that he simply didn't like it and was trying to spare her feelings. Pete, excited and emboldened by her lack of judgement, anger or demands, proceeds to unload about all his own problems. Primary among them is that he is frustrated by his relationship with Trudy: he wakes up each morning and looks her in the eyes and expects to see a soulmate, but instead it's just another person who doesn't get or value who HE is.

Yes, he literally just told the woman he cheated on his wife with that "my wife doesn't understand me!"

Peggy of course is drinking it all up, because her head is still filled with romantic visions of being the woman who truly gets Pete and makes him happy, because at the moment she finds simply being with Pete in any capacity to be more than enough for her. She promises him that he isn't in this alone, and even grins when he apologizes for tearing her blouse, indicating that maybe she enjoyed the display of passion. Time is moving on and the office isn't quite as empty anymore though, so she is smart enough to grab a folder from his desk to make it look like she was collecting something. She heads out the door, walking on air over having her fantasy life appear to come true. Pete meanwhile is left basking in the afterglow of cheating on his wife AND having a woman who seems willing to subsume her personality and needs to cater to his own.

Peggy's not the only one with fantasies running through her head though. The switchboard ladies Joyce and Marge have a new third member making up their trio: Lois Sadler. She's only been there for two weeks, but in that time she has become enamored with the voice of one of Sterling Cooper's employees.... Salvatore Romano. She listens in, enraptured, as Salvatore speaks in Italian with his mother. She understands the language and thrills to hear the intimate conversation, Salvatore's loving exasperation and his mother's minor quibbles but obvious devotion.

When Joan Holloway pops in with some snacks as a treat to make sure that Mona Sterling's call later that day goes DIRECTLY to her, Joyce and Marge take the opportunity to pump her for information. They never leave the switchboard room so they've never seen Salvatore: is he handsome or does he look like Ernest Borgnine? Joan fills Lois' head with an even more idealized version: Salvatore is tall, handsome, debonair AND smells good! He doesn't wear cheap cologne, she thinks it is an expensive European brand. Joyce and Marge are impressed by her eye for detail, while Lois remains caught up in her exciting fantasy world, none the wiser that Salvatore is REALLY not ever going to be interested.



Don arrives to work, greeted by Peggy who hands him a note and tells him Mr. Cooper wants to see him. He asks her to tell Roger he'll join him soon, and is surprised when Peggy explains it is JUST Bertram Cooper who wants to see him, there is no Sterling involved. That raises a red flag in Don's mind, but the extra moment he takes to consider means he notices something else. A details man, Don spots that Peggy's collar is torn and asks her what happened. She waves it off as having caught it on something, but can't resist telling him she's going to start bringing in a spare.

Even a details man can be blind sometimes, and Don is lacking the context to consider this anything but a slightly odd thing to inform him. Distracted by the Cooper news, he goes into his office. Left behind, Peggy is further delighted by the thrill of getting away with an explanation to cover up what she clearly intends to be further workplace dalliances with Pete Campbell in the future.

Soon Don finds himself waiting awkwardly out of Cooper's office like a schoolkid waiting to see the principal. He's removed his shoes as is custom, and Cooper comes to greet him personally and let him into the office. Once inside, he takes a seat and reaches for a cigarette, but Cooper waves his arms and tells him (not orders) that he would prefer he didn't smoke. Don here shows another difference to Roger, who continued happily smoking against Cooper's protest in another episode, he just tucks his cigarettes back away.

Cooper's first line must raise more alarm bells for Don, as he starts to talk about the good work he's done for the firm. It sounds like preamble for a "but.... we have to let you go." It's the opposite of that though, Cooper has been continually impressed by Don's abilities, personality and actions, and decided to reward them. A stunned Don is handed a check for $2500, for once speechless as he stares at the frankly shocking amount of money. He's effectively been handed a $20,000 bonus in 2020 terms, which doesn't even account for changes in purchasing power. This is roughly 70% of what Pete Campbell makes in an entire year, just casually handed over as an unexpected bonus. It's half the money back that he scrimped and saved only to hand over to his brother Adam to keep him out of his life. Essentially, it's a Godsend.

Cooper explains that he sees in Don qualities he sees and values in himself. Don assumes this is a compliment, and it is, though he is a little uneasy at Cooper happily proclaiming them both men who are powered entirely by self-interest. For Cooper that's not a negative quality, and in one moment we learn far more than we'd probably ever want to know about this affable, slightly comical senior partner... because he points out a book to Don and declares he needs to read it to learn everything there is to know. That book? Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand, the insipid and revolting objectivist bible of libertarians the world over.

Don has never read it, doesn't seem particularly excited by the idea of reading it... but he also just got given $2500 by his Boss, so he's sure as hell not going to turn down the suggestion. He manages to stutter out that he will buy a copy, then realizes Cooper has turned back to his bonsai tree and realizes the meeting is over. Still in somewhat of a daze, he makes his own exit from the office.



At the Art Department, which is NOT casting as the handwritten sign on the door proclaims, Lois Sadler "just so happens" to find herself wandering by. Two of the artists - Duane and Marty - are delighted to see her, but she only has eyes for Salvatore as he comes marching out of his office demanding to know who was working on the compositions for Firestone. Lois introduces herself, just drinking in everything about Salvatore the entire time.

Marty is young and skinny, Duane is middle-aged and bald. But Salvatore? Oh he's dreamy! Tall and well-built and wearing a fine suit, a full head of hair and a handsome face and a charming smile. She lies that she was trying to find accounts to give them her paperwork but got lost. Marty offers to walk her up to the right floor but she quickly insists she just needs directions. Sal gives them to her as she listens in awe to his voice. Finally she leaves, but not before she can't resist throwing him a,"Ciao, ciao!" just like his mother does.

Duane is happy for the unusual distraction from everyday work, and rolls his eyes at Marty's belief that she was flirting with him. He points out that she was flirting with Salvatore, who credits it to the tie a salesman gave him the hard sell on. It's not the tie though, Duane notes, it's him, they can tell he makes money. Salvatore, who enjoys every chance he can get to make people think of him as a real ladies man, smirks that you don't need money to dress better than Duane does and walks away, but not before dumping some more work on his desk. Just a little reminder that for all the friendly banter, he's still Duane's Boss.

Pete is sitting in his office, brooding over something - his infidelity? Or just bemoaning how "tough" his blessed life is? - and drinking scotch when Hildy informs him over the intercom that his wife is here. Grumpy, he tells her to light up a line so he'll know which one, and Hildy informs him that she means Trudy is LITERALLY here. Hurriedly, Pete hides his day drinking by slipping his scotch into a drawer, then rushes to the job to greet his wife as she steps happily through the door.
'
She's arrives to share a romantic moment, she's brought champagne and wants them to walk together to THEIR new apartment. She's excited and keen to be with him, and Pete once again finds himself seething over her dismissing or correcting his concerns. It's 30 blocks? Well it's a beautiful day! What will people think about her showing up to his office? That he is beloved!

Pete, feeling guilty at his wife being right here at the site of his infidelity (he quickly turns over a couch cushion where he banged Peggy only a few hours earlier) of course takes out his own self-loathing on her. He declares he is too busy to come supervise the movers after all, makes her feel bad for wanting to be with him, and then too late realizes that he's being an rear end in a top hat and makes a half-assed attempt to apologize while still insisting that he's going to be too busy (sitting in a dark office drinking) to come to the apartment. He will drink champagne with her, and Trudy - who Pete thinks overrides him and insists on getting her own way - is of course eager to make things good, putting aside her own upset to make HIM feel better.



The Belle Jolie pitch finally happens. Freddy Rumsen is doing the talking, Salvatore's art is on display, but this is all Peggy who is, of course, NOT present at the meeting. The concept is "mark your man", with the wide range of many lipsticks reduced to a single example in each piece of art. Don as Creative Director oversees the meeting, while Ken Cosgrove is the account executive, and they're all fully behind the direction Peggy has taken them in.

The trouble is, Belle Jolie isn't.

Rather, the senior rep - Hugh Brody - isn't. His junior Elliot Lawrence seems intrigued by the idea, but Brody shits all over it. They've only shown one shade of lipstick, they're trying to refocus the entire direction of how their company works etc. With the utter confidence of a white male in his 50s, he informs all the other men in the room "what women want", and what they want are lots and lots of choices. Ken's job is to prep and push the client to be conducive to the pitch, and unlike Pete with Bethlehem Steel he is quick to try and do his job. Unlike that situation though, this time Don doesn't want him to.

Reading Brody's character, perhaps having taken some inspiration from his earlier meeting with Cooper and his talk about personality types, Don takes a surprising stance. He declares he doesn't want to waste anymore of his own time and tells Brody they can go, clearly this business relationship isn't going to work. A shocked Ken, Salvatore and Freddy watch in awe as a calm, authoritative Don explains to a bewildered Hugh Brody that he either has Jesus in his heart or he doesn't. He lays out how Belle Jolie's own direction has dropped their sales and left them in 4th place so it clearly isn't working. Then he re-pitches essentially what Freddy Rumsen already said, but couches it in terms of talking down to Brody as if he's idiotic for not being able to see the point they're making.

Like Freddy he borrows from Peggy's feedback at the brainstorming session: no woman wants to be 1 in a 100, she wants to own her man, to mark her territory and declare to the world,"He's mine, not yours." Brody is caught up in the spell and tells Don to sit back down to continue, but Don refuses again, insisting he won't sit down until he knows he's not wasting his time. It's a gamble, but one that pays off, as shortly after they all leave the pitch in a great mood, shaking hands and laughing, client and firm in lockstep for the direction they want to take.

Ken, true to his role, offers to escort them back to the Roosevelt and then diplomatically suggests they might arrange for "somebody" to meet them there. Brody laughs happily at the offer, while Elliot takes the opportunity to wax lyrical about the exciting nature of the Roosevelt bar... he got to share a drink with Robert Mitchum! He also happens to mention the place recently underwent renovations, and there is a blink and you'll miss it widening of the eyes by Salvatore at this reference.

Brody and Elliot leave, and now that they're alone the others lose their minds over Don's balls in forcing the client to accept the pitch. They reference a legend that Don once dangled a client out the window by the ankles, then all head into Don's office laughing and adrenaline buzzing from a wildly successful pitch... and walk right past Peggy without a word in the process, closing the door behind them and leaving the architect of their success isolated and unrewarded.

Even worse, they do actually contact her over the intercom to order her to bring them ice for their drinks. She dutifully does as she is told, asking them if they want her to leave it, then reluctantly asking if they actually want her to do the further indignity of putting the ice in their own drinks for them. But it's actually something else entirely, because Don actually called her in so she could put the ice in her OWN drink. In shock, Peggy finds herself temporarily part of the boy's club. They laud her, the presentation was a home run, and Don even pretends like her idea sold itself before Freddy lets her know just how hard Don fought to make them believers.

For Peggy today must feel like heaven. She has moved her relationship with Pete in the direction she wanted, her copy was a success, the pitch went brilliantly and now she's been treated for the moment at least like an equal, a peer with the executives who usually only show interest in her as a sexual being. They even playfully tease her for being a real writer when she is mildly upset that Salvatore changed her wording slightly, then playfully tease her for NOT being a real writer when she turns down another drink. Salvatore won't let her keep one of the art pieces as a souvenir, but he isn't cruel in his denial and she doesn't take it personally. Why would she, today has been a banner day for Peggy Olson.



Lois is in the break room signing up to join the bowling league when she's warned by Marge that "they" keep track of everything, reminding her about Joseph McCarthy! Joan steps up to brag about her mysterious plans, saying she's going out and they shouldn't ask where she's going. Before she can revel in their attention though, she finds herself surprisingly and unwelcomingly overshadowed by Peggy who rushes in to eagerly share her happiness. She tells a thrilled Marge and Joyce about selling her copy, about how the executives even poured her a drink! Lois is especially enthralled (and a little jealous) when she learns that Salvatore was there too. They insist they need to celebrate, they'll head out a little before 5pm to go to P.J Clarke's. Everybody is keen, and they rush off, leaving behind Joan who for once finds herself completely ignored.

In Pete's office, his "busy" work day consists of drinking and joking around with Ken, Harry and Paul. When they spot the champagne and ask where it came from, he says it was a "grateful client" rather than admitting his wife bought it for him. They point out that they heard he was supposed to be moving today, and he smugly explains he informed "the concerned party" (his loving wife!) that he already has a job. Harry, normally keen to talk up how much he enjoys being married, commiserates with Pete, asking if "they" ever stop asking for things. Ken and Paul, single men, share a surprised look and a silent relief that they're not in the same position as their peers.

Peggy enters, saying she'd come by looking for Hildy who must have gone to lunch. Ken congratulates her again on her success and the others (not Pete) chime in to add their own plaudits, as well as enjoying mocking each other. Ken is a published writer but can't do copy, and Paul's own copy they make fun of for being full of puns. They ask if she means to celebrate and she explains this is what she was looking for Hildy for: so far mostly just the girls in the office are going to P.J Clarke's at 5 to celebrate, but she leaves the invitation open to the rest, most particularly Pete.

To her surprise, they inform her that Cooper, Sterling and Draper have already left for the day which means there is nobody left to do work for. They have a traffic meeting they can't get out of (Joan is a tattletale, they note) but that ends at 3pm, so why not start the party then? She asks about Freddy Rumsen and they laugh he'll ALREADY be there even without knowing there is a party. Pete attempts a feeble effort at authority, saying he's senior man when the others aren't here, but Paul dismisses that and insists he will be.

So Pete appeals to his domestic life he was complaining about only a couple minutes earlier: he should really go home. Peggy points out that if they start the party at 3, he can still go home at 5 like normal, then reminds him that they all work so hard they deserve the break (the janitor and Hollis aren't invited, by the way). The others all look to Pete, backing Peggy though not knowing the reason for her desperation for Pete to join them. Finally he agrees, and the party is on.

Peggy leaves and walks back through the floor towards her desk. She looks around a moment to make sure nobody is looking, and then allows herself the indulgence of a brief skip on the way. Life IS good.



There is however one last "boss" to consider. Salvatore Romano takes a call at his desk, Lois on the other end informing him she was about to leave for lunch but received a call for him. She waits a moment, then gasps that the call has unfortunately been disconnected. Salvatore, no fool, allows her the deception, enjoying the clumsiness of it in fact. She tells him how everybody is so excited by how well the Belle Jolie pitch went and Peggy in particular lauded his spectacular artwork. Salvatore knows that she was disappointed the words weren't exactly as she wanted but again is happy not to call Lois out on it, and she gets to her point. They're taking Peggy out to celebrate, and she thinks he should join them. Lois pauses a moment, realizes she never said who she was, and tells him. She's thrilled when he calmly tells her he knows, and even more thrilled when he says he'll be there. she disconnects the call and lets the excitement wash over her, while in his own office, Salvatore smokes and considers something seriously.

Don, meanwhile, has gone not to take his medicine but to dish some out. He's arrived at Midge's still high off the success of the presentation and the imposition of his will on Brody. The $2500 is burning a hole in his pocket and he's gotten a wild idea in his head, he wants to grab Midge and fly to Paris, spend a couple of days or more on an escape with her. Unfortunately for him, it appears that Midge doesn't just hang motionless in a void between the times he sees her. She has friend around, including Roy Hazelitt, and her own special plans: getting high and listening to Miles Davis!

Midge's friends - two males including Roy, two women, one of whom is black - don't seem particularly happy to see a middle-aged man in a suit, he looks like a "square" even if Roy grumblingly admits that Don is "okay". As Midge points out to Don, just because she can't call him at his office doesn't mean he can't call her at home. She's made her plans regardless of how excited he is about his own, but she has a counter offer to make... they can do this and then do that, and that'll make a trip to Paris more fun.

So, to his surprise, the Creative Director of Sterling Cooper finds himself smoking marijuana with beatniks at his mistress' studio apartment while listening to Miles Davis. It's apparently pretty good poo poo, because they all end up laying about on the bed or the couch, Don admitting he feels like Dorothy seeing color for the first time. He does want to share this experience with Midge, but unfortunately Roy is a constant instructive presence. Don doesn't like to share, or rather he likes to choose who he shares with. As he places a hand on Midge's stomach and tries to enjoy the moment with her, Roy proclaims that he is good with "the words, man", which causes Don to shrug and agree that this essentially sums up who he is as a person.

As the others marvel over the fact that the record has stopped playing and they're just listening to the needle at the end of the groove, Don stumbles into the bathroom. Inside, he finds himself staring into the mirror, his high causing his mind to wander places it hasn't gone in a long time... to memories of his childhood.

Its 30 years earlier and a young Dick Whitman is digging holes with a shovel in barren dirt. Abigail - who is NOT his mother - hangs out clothes on the line, and for the first time we see who I can only assume is Dick's father, working on an old car in the front yard. As they all work in the hot sun, a man appears on the road and slowly approaches the fence. Abigail spots him and he removes his hat, revealing oily hair, an unshaven face and shabby clothes. He's a hobo, and he admits that while he knows EVERYBODY is feeling the hard times he was hoping he could trouble her for a meal and hopefully a bed, he is more than happy to work for it.

Mr. Whitman is quick to grumpily declare they're not Christian anymore and there is no food or bed to be found her. Abigail, a harsh looking woman, disagrees with this though, they ARE Christian. Mr. Whitman, obviously knowing not to argue this point, agrees that work may be good for the soul but it doesn't change that there is no more work to be done today... if he comes back tomorrow, maybe they will have something for him.

Realizing he'll get no relief here, the hobo prepares to move on, but is stopped by Abigail. The Christian thing to do is to provide charity, and she will. He can eat dinner with them tonight and sleep there too, but tomorrow he'll be expected to work and before anything else she'll need to boil his clothes before letting him in. He admits the latter would be as much a relief to him as her. She shouts to Dick to stop digging holes and get a fire going under the pot, and he backs up in fear from her and the strange man. The hobo waves and smiles, and says the timid child reminds him of himself. Abigail, a harsh woman who nonetheless is trying to do what she thinks is the moral thing, can't help herself and sneers, saying this doesn't surprise her in the slightest.

At dinner they say grace, and Abigail is surprised at the manners the hobo shows, and asks where he comes from. He's from "East", around New York which to a young Dick Whitman must sound like a magical, alien place. Mr. Whitman grunts that this explains why he took easily to being a bum, and Abigail chides him, noting that nobody takes easily to accepting charity. The hobo carefully watches the back and forth between husband and wife and takes his cues for exactly what to say and when from it.

He admits to Mr. Whitman (Archie, Abigail calls him) that though he has never pulled weeds he has worked docks, mills and factories and is no stranger to working for a living. He shares in Abigail's disdain for communists, agreeing with her that they are beyond God's salvation. Does he believe any of it? He does in that one moment, because he needs to - the hobo creates an identity, personality and beliefs to suit the environment he is in.

It works for the hobo too, as Abigail takes a quarter from her paltry stash and places it on the table for him. The hobo's eyes lock in on it, but so so Archie's. He reaches out and takes it before the hobo can, putting it in his pocket and declaring that he can have it tomorrow... AFTER he has done the work he promised to do. The hobo doesn't take offense, he just nods and blesses them for their kindness. All while a young Dick Whitman watches the stranger with great interest, unknowingly seeing an adult mindset he himself will one day match: the cipher who tells people what they want to hear



Salvatore, meanwhile, has decided to take up an offer he got earlier in the day... but not from Lois Sadler. He arrives at the Roosevelt bar, where Elliot Lawrence is very pleased to see him. He mentions that he had hoped Salvatore had heard him mention the "renovation", and what follows is a delicate dance of coded words and terms to tease out whether both men are what they believe the other to be. Elliot stresses he is a traveling salesman, no wife or kids, that he won't be around for long, that he has a hotel room with a view and hasn't eaten yet. It all paints a picture and sends a message without saying anything: you won't have to worry about bumping into me again, I'm not involved, I want to spend time with you and I have a place we can go.

Salvatore, for his part, is warm and friendly but careful not to offer too much back about himself. Everything he says is couched in terms to explain why he is here, to avoid any possible blowback if this isn't what he thinks it is: he was intrigued by Elliot's description, the renovation might be inspiration for a job he is working, as a New York resident he finds Elliot's outside perspective intriguing etc. The dinner invitation is less easy to think of a non-romantic explanation for though, but Elliot saves him there by noting he has an expense account. Now it's not just a free meal, but actual proof/evidence that this was a business dinner between two representatives of their respective firms.

At P.J Clarke's, a few of the staff are dancing the cha-cha while others stand or sit around chatting. Peggy is dancing with a drunk Freddy Rumsen, who has been making up for lost time since the Belle Jolie pitch which he seemed to make an effort to be sober for. Joan chats with a distracted Lois Sadler, sweetly bitching about Peggy being the center of attention: sure she obviously has something upstairs, but at Sterling Cooper the interest is usually "downstairs". Lois is only half really taking it in, looking around and noting that the Art Department aren't present. Joan points out Duane and Marty ARE there, in fact about the whole office is there (and Peggy's popularity is obviously a sore point) and Lois uneasily says she must have had too much to drink if she didn't notice.

Luckily for Lois, Paul arrives to offer Joan a dance, which she takes with a smirk. Male attention? Now she feels stable again, and she makes a point of smiling smugly at two of the other secretaries about the fact an executive has made a move on her. The cha-cha finishes and Peggy gives Freddy an affectionate kiss on the cheek, and he bows to her, accidentally spilling a little of his drink. This gets a laugh, but is followed by a squeal of delight from ALL the women present when the next song on the jukebox turns out to be Chubby Checker demanding they all "Do the Twist".

Nobody is left standing or sitting now, save for Pete Campbell. Everybody rushes onto the dance-floor to do The Twist, even Hildy allows herself to dance with Harry. As the place really gets fired up, Peggy - for whom life really, really is good right now - spots Pete still sitting alone. Spotting an opportunity, she twists her way over to him, leans forward and seductively asks him to dance with her. She is expecting him to eagerly accept, for them to yet again bask in hiding in plain sight the secret of their affair. Instead, Pete stares up at her and quietly states,"I don't like you like this."

Suddenly her entire world falls out beneath her feet. Pete stands and leaves as she is left to force on a happy face and dance her way back in with the rest of the over-excited group. She wipes tears from her face as she goes through the motions of having a good time, rejected by the one person she - bizarrely - wants the most.

As for Pete, his rejection says so much about himself. Because he never thought of him and Peggy as being in this affair together. She was "the woman" from his cabin fantasy to him, a stand-in, a thing that existed to just be there for him to suit his needs, whether those be sex or just agreeing with him in lockstep on everything he says, or to stare with adoration at him when he said anything. He bemoaned Trudy not being his soulmate, but he doesn't want a soulmate, not really. What he wants is some idealized fantasy woman, and the moment any of them don't live up to his exacting (and often contradictory) specifications, he blames them for it and leaves them to miserably try to pick up the pieces and try to figure out exactly what they did wrong. In one day, he has managed to ruin for two separate women what should have been one of the greatest days of their lives.



Elliot and Salvatore have finished their dinner, and now Salvatore enjoys a sambuca con la moscawhile Elliot has coffee to finish up the meal. Elliot asks Salvatore what he plans to do, and Sal misunderstands the question, pondering whether he can find a writer in the agency to break off with him so they can start their own little shop. Elliot though has danced around the subject enough, it is time to be more direct. He means what does Salvatore plan to do about seeing the view in Elliot's room: it looks all the way out to the park, though it's dark now... in other words, you won't be coming up to see the view.

Salvatore isn't sure, but it is obvious he is interested. Elliot decides to push a little hard, and asks if he can try some of the Sambuca. In reaching for it, he allows one finger to gently brush Sal's own, then gulps down the rest of the drink, an intimate gesture between the two that can put no further doubt in the mind of either that this entire process has been a long seduction. But Salvatore can't go through with it, even when Elliot quietly assures him he can "show him". Salvatore's response is beautiful if heartbreaking, as he tells him,"I have thought about. I know what I want... I know what I want to do."

In the first episode I found Salvatore's writing and performance far too broad and obvious, a clumsy piece of writing and over-the-top performance that detracted from the show. By this point though, the writing has found its voice and Bryan Batt has developed his character. His performance here in this scene, the mixture of longing and fear to take that final extra step, but the acknowledgement of his self-awareness of his homosexuality is just pitch perfect. As is his angry shock when Elliot asks him what he is scared of.

Because there IS something to be scared of. This is 1960, and as unfair as it might be, if Salvatore was discovered to be gay it would end his career in a heartbeat. He has EVERYTHING to lose, and EVERYTHING to be scared of. So he offers his hand, thanks him for the dinner, then walks away - they were just two men having a nice dinner and that is the end of that. Elliot is left behind with his coffee and not the night he was hoping for, but this probably isn't the first time this has happened to him and it probably won't be the last. Navigating a homosexual relationship in 1960 is a lot like defusing a bomb: you can make all the right moves and still run the risk of it all blowing up, so a night where nothing happens is not a result to be upset about.

At Midge's, a dazed Don emerges from the bathroom and finds the others dancing in a line and having a great time. The sound of sirens and screaming from next door breaks up the dance but not the party, as they all rush to the window to see what is going on. Midge figures it is the husband, who uses his wife "like a speedbag". This puts paid to any chance for them to head out of the apartment though, beatniks smoking marijuana do NOT want to be anywhere near police. Don spots Midge's Polaroid (which in 1960 was still an enormously large "portable" camera) and picks it up to get a photo of her, and she quickly rushes to pose on the bed beside Roy. He takes the shot, then sets the camera down to allow it time to develop.

His mind drifts back to his childhood in the meantime. At Abigail's command he's brought blankets to the hobo in the barn where he'll be sleeping, as well as a reminder he is meant to say his prayers. Freed from Abigail or Archie's presence, emboldened by his audience being a quiet child, the hobo speaks honestly and openly. He calls himself a Gentleman of the Rails, and unlike the humility he showed with Abigail he seems almost arrogant when he talks himself up as a free man not tied down to any one place.

Dick reveals something about himself too, a sulky recitation of something he has obviously been told many times in the past, particularly by Abigail: he is a "whore's child". I had always assumed that Abigail was simply Archie's second wife, that Dick's mother died and he remarried. This admission makes me assume he had sex with another woman out of wedlock, or possibly that he even had sex with her WHILE married to Abigail. It would just be like Abigail's harsh acceptance of her religious and moral duty that she would agree to raise Archie's son but hate the sight of him, a constant living reminder of her husband's moral failings.

The hobo takes some pity on Dick's situation, and warns him that he senses death is coming to a place like this which is why he doesn't plan to stay long. He's been running from death since he went on the bum: once he had a wife and family, a home and job and mortgage and he was miserable. One day when death came for him he "freed" himself (I wonder his his wife and family felt about that?) and just started moving, and he has slept peacefully every night since.

Since Dick is too young to smoke, the hobo offers him something else: a lesson. He takes out chalk and shows him the code: images left on fence-posts outside homes that hobos have visited. He shows Dick the sign for good food, dangerous dogs, dishonest men, and a kind heart that will swallow a sad story. He tosses the chalk to Dick and tells him he doesn't need to be scared, he's not a man yet. What does that mean? I can only assume it means both that he doesn't have to fear being assigned a code by anybody, but also that he doesn't need to fear the tensions, stresses and problems that adults do.



A grown up Don has plenty to fear, but his reaction to the Polaroid he has now developed is more a bemused resignation as he comes to an inevitable conclusion: Midge and Roy are in love. The photograph shows the two on the bed, and everything from their eyes to their body language to even their simple proximity screams,"These two are meant to be together."

Midge of course thinks this is ridiculous, tossing the photo aside when Don shows it to her. She thinks it looks like a magazine photo and nothing more, while Roy proclaims that love is a bourgeois invention anyway. Don is convinced though, he spends all his time trying to capture or emulate the look that Midge and Roy generated unconsciously.

This gets both Roy and the other male beatnik heated up though, as they complain about Don being part of the system, about how pointless and useless his so-called "important" life is. Don gives as good as he gets, noting that their empty posturing pretending to be vagrants (at least the hobo he met as a child was an actual hobo) is far from world changing activism either.

When Roy decries Don as being for "them" and not for "us", Don humiliates Midge by telling her friends to grow up and "make something of yourselves". He mocks their raging against the system, telling them there is no such thing, no conspiracy or mysterious "them". "The universe is indifferent" he lays out flat for them, alarming the male beatnik who is far too high to deal with such a nihilistic philosophy.

Don puts his coat back on, takes his hat from the sleeping female, and makes Midge the offer one last time: come to Paris with him. Now. Sad but firm, she tells him no. Don considers, regrets for just a moment, then he makes what feels like a very final goodbye. He endorses the check, slides it into her top and tells her to buy a car. He goes to leave and Roy - who probably isn't sad to see him go - a warning reminder, there are cops out there, he can't leave. "[i]You[/i can't," Don gives back as his own reminder of the reality of the world, and steps out the door.

Outside, police are taking away the abusive husband. One of the patrolmen spots Don, his expensive suit and confident stride, well-groomed hair and air of authority, and simply offers him a respectful nod and a "sir" which Don returns with a,"Good evening" before walking on by. There might not actively be a system, but there is A system, and Don is a valued and respected part of it... or at least he is able to make people believe he is. Like the hobo of his youth, Don knows how to make people see and hear what he wants them to see and hear.



He returns home, having gained and lost $2500 in a day that Betty will never know about. He moves upstairs and into his children's rooms, where he stares down at his young son living in a comfort and security that young Dick Whitman never knew. Reaching down, he shakes his confused son awake, telling him to stay quiet so as not to wake Sally. Little Bobby is confused, he's tired and doesn't get why daddy is here talking to him... but he seems very insistent on wanting Bobby to ask him a question. So Bobby does... why do lightning bugs light up!?!

Don sighs, he was hoping his tiny, innocent son might ask something like,"Tell me about your history and the family dynamics that plague you even to this day, father." So he admits he doesn't know but promises his son with the sincerity of the very drunk or very high that he will NEVER lie to his son. Bobby doesn't really get what any of this is about, but he gets his daddy is being very loving towards him so he gives him a big hug, and Don embraces him tightly. He never makes it out of the bed either, so exhausted that he simply remained in the bed and slept beside his son.

This was a relationship young Dick Whitman never had with Archie Whitman. Don remembers the day the hobo left. True to his word if nothing else, the unnamed hobo has done the full day of work he said he would. Meeting up with Archie as he works on the car some more, the hobo thanks him again for the meal and the bed. Archie offers back the most charitable thing he has said so far, wishing him luck on the road. He then reaches into his pocket, and the hobo watches hungrily for the quarter that Abigail set aside for him.

Instead, Archie pulls out a match and uses it to light a cigarette. The hobo waits, still hoping but already knowing that the money isn't coming. Realizing he hasn't left yet, Archie betrays no sense of shame or even false anger, just simply tells him to be on his way. The hobo goes, Dick watching him go as he peels potatoes. Alarmed because he knows his father was supposed to pay him, he races after the hobo but he's already well down the road. Suspecting he already knows what he'll find, Dick slides the dry bushes aside to reveal the fence-post, and the hobo code carved into it: a dishonest man lives here.

Dick looks at his father, a tall man who would be handsome if he hadn't been weathered by life, weather, and poverty. His father even now shows no sense of satisfaction, guilt or concern about stealing from either the hobo or his own wife. He simply collects his wheelbarrow and continues on about his day. That code remains though, and Dick will never look at his father the same way again.

Much like Dick's mother, I had made certain assumptions about his father. In this episode we get out first look at the actual man himself and learned a lot about him. He either cheated on his wife or got an unmarried girl pregnant before marrying another. He was a hard and perhaps cruel man, selfish in a way Don clearly doesn't want to be but fears he might be. I had also assumed that he was dead, but after this episode I'm not so sure. Is it possible he simply just abandoned his family and left a pregnant Abigail to lean on her brother(?) Mack to look after the family? There's not enough information to know yet, but it is interesting to have seen this man as well as the hobo in this single episode and seen that BOTH are a potential genesis for the man Don Draper has become despite clearly having entirely different personal philosophies.



Peggy arrives early back to Sterling Cooper once more, and timidly approaches Pete's office to see if maybe he also came in early... perhaps for a repeat of yesterday morning's passion? She hesitates and then changes her mind, moving to her desk instead. More people arrive and then finally Pete as well... walking with Ken, Paul and Harry and joking away with them. He breaks off with them and heads into his office, and he doesn't even glance in Peggy's direction - just like the last time they had sex, he's lost interest in her for now. Yesterday she was accepted and loved by everyone, today she's back to being "just" a secretary and ignored by the one man she wants to pay attention to her.

Don Draper arrives to work too, greeted by Peggy before he heads into his office. He closes the door behind him, and the camera slowly moves in until the name Donald Draper takes up the frame. In this episode we got to see more than ever before of Dick Whitman's origins, of the family around him and the events that may have contributed to the man he became... and I'm still no closer than I was at the end of the first episode to knowing exactly WHO Don Draper actually is.

Episode Index

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at 07:50 on Oct 18, 2020

Yoshi Wins
Jul 14, 2013


Great write up! You always notice things I've never noticed before.

Don tells Roy and Midge they're in love, but in the pilot he tells Rachel Menken that men like him made love up, and that it isn't real. Is he being more honest to Roy and Midge, and was he presenting himself in a false way to Rachel? Or does he feel one way some of the time, and the exact opposite the rest of the time?

One thing that hardly ever gets discussed that's interesting about this show is that Don seems to be an atheist in 1960s America. This country has rapidly grown secular over the past 20 years, but in 1960, the vast majority of Americans considered themselves religious. Don is not only not religious, but his nihilistic interpretation of the universe suggests that he rejects even spirituality. This would set Don apart from most of the people around him even further, when he is already so aloof and isolated for a number of other reasons.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


It makes his "You either accept Jesus into your heart or you don't" line stand out even more, because it seems pretty clear to me at least at this point that Don probably considers religion just an extremely successful advertising campaign, and you can see that him referencing Jesus even surprises his own executives. I have to figure that his upbringing and his exposure to religion being via a hypocritical father and his severe, uncompromising wife went a long way towards poisoning religious and spiritual belief for him, and going through the Korean War probably didn't help. His line about the indifference of the universe really indicates a nihilistic worldview, a belief that you have the here and now and that's it. Kinda like that hobo, except instead of running from New York and the obligations of a wife and family, Don raced to New York and took those obligations on.

He told Rachel he didn't believe in love, but that same episode he goes home to his wife and kids and creates a perfect picturebook image of a happy, loving family. I think with Don you can never be entirely sure what he's saying is ever entirely the truth, everything with him seems to be calculated or designed to illicit the reaction he is hoping to get, even unconsciously when he's angry or upset. He might not believe in true love, but he can see that Midge and Roy either had it for each other or at least the chemistry/closeness that make up the package people CALL love. Which makes it all the more interesting that he tells her she loves Roy and AFTER that tries to convince her again to come to Paris with him anyway.

The Klowner
Apr 20, 2019

I see past the sham that is society, and I'm into some incredibly fucked up shit.

I love Sal's side plot in this episode. That conversation between him and Elliot is so rich with pathos and ulterior meaning.

I'm a little surprised about your baffled reaction to Peggy's interest in Pete, OP. Fresh graduates in their first real job are bound to be captivated by the fantasy of office romance, in the Big City no less. With our privileged viewpoint, we know Pete is a silver-spoon-sucking slimeball, but to Peggy, he's a clean-shaven, confident, not-unattractive young man in a relative position of power who's shown an interest in her. It's not that big a stretch.

a new study bible!
Feb 1, 2009



BIG DICK NICK
A Philadelphia Legend
Fly Eagles Fly



Jerusalem posted:

It's been quite some time since I've laughed quite as hard as I did for the vomit scene the first time I saw it. It just KEEPS coming and something that gross-out happening on a show like Mad Men was just such a wonderful surprise

I had the same reaction when I watched the series for the first time a few months ago. My only experience with the show had been AMC promos on TV and acceptance speeches on awards shows, so seeing the show engage in something weird and absurd signaled that I had it totally wrong.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk


I love how on the nose his name is. Don (wear) Draper (covered with a concealing cloak)

lurker2006
Jul 30, 2019




edit: I'm sorry.

The Klowner
Apr 20, 2019

I see past the sham that is society, and I'm into some incredibly fucked up shit.

lurker2006 posted:



edit: I'm sorry.

lmao

lurker2006
Jul 30, 2019


lurker2006 fucked around with this message at 07:41 on Oct 19, 2020

GoutPatrol
Oct 17, 2009

Coal Jobs for the Coal God


Jerusalem posted:

Season 1, Episode 8 - The Hobo Code
Written by Chris Provenzano, Directed by Phil Abraham

Hollis apologetically informs them the service elevator is not operating and asks if they mind sharing the lift with a janitor. They offer no objection, but Pete is clearly less than impressed to have the black janitor not just visible to him but sharing his space. He's used to the maintenance staff being invisible, he just comes in to work each day and the place is clean and he doesn't think anything of it. He complains to Peggy about spending a day watching other men work, and when the janitor gets off on his floor, Pete also takes a moment to complain about the lift being "the local" - Pete is used to being the "express", an important person who gets taken where he wants to go without delay. Hollis is quick to apologize for the great crime of making Pete stand in an elevator with another man.


Another day, another goon not getting New York humor

Mr Apollo
Jan 1, 2013


Just wanted to stop lurking and pop in and say thank you Jerusalem for these excellent write-ups. Not only for Mad Men, but for all your past work as well. I must confess that I'm one of those people who usually consumes media purely for entertainment / on a very superficial level. Critical media analyisis is a skill that I am sorely lacking so having someone point out everything I've been overlooking is really interesting. I've been following this thread and slowly reading through your Sopranos summaries and found them to be both very insightful and entertaining.

lurker2006 posted:

I'll stop now.

Never.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Edit: Thanks, Mr Apollo

Re: Pete - while yes we do have a privileged access to him that lets us see what a piece of poo poo he is, I don't think it's much of a secret to the other characters either. We frequently see him falling flat in his efforts to hit on or appeal to women: at his bachelor party, his attempt to charm the sales girl at the return desk etc. Yes Trudy thinks he's great, but she's really the exception rather than the rule, and his first interactions with Peggy before she let him into her apartment in the pilot were him being such a creep towards her that Don literally took him aside to tell him to stop being so gross. Which makes her seeming obsession with him seem all the weirder to me. To be fair, there are plenty of cases of people falling for people who are just clearly, horribly wrong for them so it's certainly no unrealistic.


Unless I'm missing something, what I wrote was absolutely that he was upset about "all the stops the elevator was making, akin to a bus or subway route having two kinds of routes: express and local, with the former stopping only at major locations (hence saving time by not stopping everywhere; express) and the latter stops everywhere"?

Perhaps I should have written Pete is used to being ON the express to make that clearer?

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at 03:15 on Oct 19, 2020

God Hole
Mar 2, 2016


nah you were pretty clear jerusalem. that goon just saw a thing related to some esoteric SA trivia they had holstered and was so excited to own somebody with it, they didn't actually read your original statement

with peggy i always just figured she didn't have a whole lot of experience contending with male attention before sterling cooper. i always really liked trudy in my original viewing, but i never stopped to consider what it was about pete that had her so enamored - her meeting with the publisher indicates she didn't have that problem though. i'm going to be stewing over this for a while i think.

God Hole fucked around with this message at 03:48 on Oct 19, 2020

KellHound
Jul 23, 2007

We are Not Amused

God Hole posted:

with peggy i always just figured she didn't have a whole lot of experience contending with male attention before sterling cooper. i always really liked trudy in my original viewing, but i never stopped to consider what it was about pete that had her so enamored - her meeting with the publisher indicates she didn't have that problem though. i'm going to be stewing over this for a while i think.

So Pete has always been my favorite character. He is a weird mix of cynical and naive. Like he's the one who is like we should sell to black people because no one is taking their money, we should get there first. And doesn't understand why someone else would let racism get in the way of making money. Also he suggest Joan sleep with Herb, but he is straight forward about it. And Joan's response to Bob asking her if she doesn't like Pete is "well... he's never lied to me." He basically enters the room and says "Hi, I'm Pete Campbell and I'm here to be a slimey poo poo heal" and well at least he warned you he was gonna do that. Which makes him en excellent contrast to Sterling or Don who charm folks before doing something awful and lovely.

Trudy's family struck me as more new money or at least newer money than Pete. When Trudy is talking to the board of the new apartment, the way she talks about Pete's family reminded me of the way someone might talk about pedigree show dog. So I always figured that was the appeal of Pete. The idea of her being a part of one of the old new york families appeals to her. And from Signal 30, it's clear she likes history because she talks about her and Pete's home the way she talked about Pete to the board.

And I think Trudy wanting the picture of perfect marriage and using Pete of all people to get it makes her also a weird mix of cynical and naive. That's why they are the perfect for each other in a terrible way.

KellHound fucked around with this message at 04:11 on Oct 19, 2020

GoutPatrol
Oct 17, 2009

Coal Jobs for the Coal God


God Hole posted:

nah you were pretty clear jerusalem. that goon just saw a thing related to some esoteric SA trivia they had holstered and was so excited to own somebody with it, they didn't actually read your original statement


I went back and watched the scene, I think Pete was making a joke. I don't think Jerusalem thinks Pete was making a joke.

The Klowner
Apr 20, 2019

I see past the sham that is society, and I'm into some incredibly fucked up shit.

GoutPatrol posted:

I went back and watched the scene, I think Pete was making a joke. I don't think Jerusalem thinks Pete was making a joke.

It was a joke made out of frustration, which Jerusalem pretty clearly stated in his response

The Klowner
Apr 20, 2019

I see past the sham that is society, and I'm into some incredibly fucked up shit.

Although, come to think of it, both instances of that joke are made by white men after being prompted by black men. And Tina Fey (30 Rock's creator and frequently a creative contributor) does have a history of writing intentionally racist/sexist humor (and later complaining that people "are too sensitive" about such humor). Mad Men's"The Hobo Code" preceded 30 Rock's "Reunion" by about a year; maybe Fey was knowingly referencing Mad Men thinking that it was a racist joke.

you guys, I've cracked the code!!

Ainsley McTree
Feb 19, 2004




lurker2006 posted:



edit: I'm sorry.

lol

Incelshok Na
Jul 2, 2020


Sal is like bacon: just entirely wonderful. I watched the show when it came out and I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed him.

lurker2006
Jul 30, 2019


Incelshok Na posted:

Sal is like bacon: just entirely wonderful. I watched the show when it came out and I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed him.
I think I recall a rumor of his abrupt exit being driven by irl grievances over the actor repeatedly leaking plot details.

Incelshok Na
Jul 2, 2020


lurker2006 posted:

I think I recall a rumor of his abrupt exit being driven by irl grievances over the actor repeatedly leaking plot details.

I'm really conflicted about the Don-as-serial-killer line they dropped. You can still see a lot of it in S4. It would have been a . . . very different show. Dextermania was a part of the zeitgeist in weird ways because it was such a mediocre show.

Xealot
Nov 25, 2002

Showdown in the Galaxy Era.



KellHound posted:

Trudy's family struck me as more new money or at least newer money than Pete. When Trudy is talking to the board of the new apartment, the way she talks about Pete's family reminded me of the way someone might talk about pedigree show dog.

This makes as much sense as anything. It never fully gelled with me why Trudy was so interested in Pete in the first place...even early on, she's portrayed as extremely savvy, so I can't imagine she was ever some naive debutante who was starry-eyed about a Dyckman looking her way. But I could see her having this more cynical take, looking at Pete's family as a means to an end.

The Klowner posted:

Mad Men's"The Hobo Code" preceded 30 Rock's "Reunion" by about a year; maybe Fey was knowingly referencing Mad Men thinking that it was a racist joke.

There are genuinely a number of Mad Men references in 30 Rock, and vice-versa. At one point, Kenneth makes a joke about his real name being Dick Whitman. In a later-season Mad Men episode, a character orders an "Old Spanish" at a bar, which is a fictitious drink from an episode of 30 Rock (it's red wine, tonic water, and olives...it sound revolting.)

Of course, Jon Hamm was on both shows, and went on to play the Reverend on Kimmy Schmidt, which involved at least one other Mad Men joke: (BIG ending spoiler, by the way) "The Reverend is a liar! He once claimed to make the 'Buy The World a Coke' ad!!"

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sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk


Just occured to me: Dick Whitman = 'whit' means small, etymologically. Small dick-man.

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