Mad Men: Time & Life
April 27, 2015 2:58 AM - Season 7, Episode 11 - Subscribe

Don comes up with a big idea; Roger asks Joan to help him fix a clerical error.
posted by crossoverman (152 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
"This is the beginning of something, not the end." Don was once told he only liked the beginning of things. And that was right - he likes to reinvent himself. He likes the start of relationships. They might be losing Sterling Cooper, but Don sees it as another chance for reinvention.

Pete's name doesn't get his kid into school. Roger's name is going to disappear because his daughter was the child of an only son of an only son. The Sterling Cooper name is about to disappear, too. Absorbed by McCann Erickson - something they've fought before.

I knew it wasn't going to work, but I loved how they tried. Alluding to the end of season three will never not make me happy. But the move out to California is only really a dream of Don's. And it's always been a place of nostalgia - for Anna, not a place he's ever really been happy. Not for any length of time.

I love that this show knows it's ending and that it's willing to suggest these things - like a move to California, even if it has no intention of going there. Weiner is playing with us, but he's being fair. Of course they would try to save their name and their legacy. But Weiner also knows that the corporate machine will eat you up eventually - the partners get everything they've always wanted. Toys to play with, just like the kids Peggy has brought into the office.

All the partners, except Joan. Joan always gets screwed when the agency changes. And we know the men of McCann don't treat her very well. I hope her story doesn't end with her leaving McCann so she can settle down with Bruce Greenwood, but at the moment I can't see the move to McCann being very good for her.

And if some men are worried about their name and their legacy, Peggy nails it when she says to Stan that it's easier for him to walk away from children he doesn't even know he has - while she lives with the fact she walked away for her career. That speech along with Pete looking longingly at the small girl hugging Peggy, oh my heart.

And good on Ken for sticking to his guns and knocking Roger and Pete back. I guess if he has to be a sell-out, he did it with some dignity.

For an episode that was so plot-driven and so obviously nostalgic, I still have no idea where the show heads next. Don is without an apartment and an office in less than thirty days. I have no idea what this show looks like for the last three episodes.

Oh, I knew Peggy would go to McCann eventually. McCann was the first agency to have a female creative director. I'm not sure if Weiner will give her that before the end, but art imitating life is a nice allusion, if nothing else.
posted by crossoverman at 3:19 AM on April 27, 2015 [16 favorites]


So is the message here that you only get a certain number of chances in life, and SCDPletters - and Don, and Roger, and Peggy, and Pete, and Joan, and and and - have used all theirs up?
posted by ladybird at 4:42 AM on April 27, 2015


In retrospect, it's so obvious that the Mort Ghlinne Comhann was going to come up this week.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:46 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


There was something about that scene where they're sitting across the table from the McCann guy as he name-drops clients that the individuals will oversee, that didn't ring completely true to me. Specifically, when the guy whispers "Coca-Cola" to Don, and Don's face takes on this glow and subtle grin, like a kid getting a puppy. It just didn't seem very Don-like to be so disarmed and enraptured like that over getting a client (no matter how huge.)

Peggy telling Stan her secret was the highlight of the show. Those two work so well together, they really should just partner-up. But, I really have the feeling that the end of the show will be more of a fade-out, rather than a parade of satisfying conclusions.

~Joan...I hope her story doesn't end with her leaving McCann so she can settle down with Bruce Greenwood, but at the moment I can't see the move to McCann being very good for her.

I agree. Then again, other than whatever she does with Avon, she's never been shown doing anything much as an account person. Joan may well be, in the end, a character that we really liked and pushed for, but ended up falling short of what we expected. Hope not, though.

What does Bruce do? Is it something important that she could bring to McCann?
posted by Thorzdad at 4:50 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Nice comments, crossoverman.

The loss of the Sterling name was so poignant. In the episode he reflects on the end of the name in the family sense, but it's prompted by his resistance to the loss of the agency name (which was all he'd had left).

They might be losing Sterling Cooper, but Don sees it as another chance for reinvention.

Does he really, though? I'd like to read it that way, but when I watched that I only saw Don's power of persuasion failing him (massively) for the second time in the episode. I'm not sure even Coca-Cola is enough to put stars in Don's eyes this time around.

Roger and Don are really the only partners (/employees, if you want to count Peggy, Stan, et al) who can afford to walk away from McCann, right? I bet both of them do.

We got wrap-ups (probably?) of the Peggy + Pete and Peggy + Stan relationships. Very good to see, on both counts. Last episode she and Pete were at each other's throats--nice to see him having a thought for her when things get real.

And Peggy's having a thought for Stan... LOVED her staying on the phone with him like old times. Someone remind me, when was it that she was at CGC and having some intense conversation with Ted, and at the end we heard Stan's voice on the line indicating he'd been listening to the whole thing?

This is really MM at its best. Such careful setup and attention to each character's arc.

Joan gets dissed again (of course), but there are two notes of hope tucked in there--she's got "the relationship" with Avon; and as Pete says, McCann doesn't know who they're dealing with. Loved Joan's little smile there, finally, in the midst of disaster.
posted by torticat at 4:54 AM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


Peggy nails it when she says to Stan that it's easier for him to walk away from children he doesn't even know he has - while she lives with the fact she walked away for her career. That speech along with Pete looking longingly at the small girl hugging Peggy, oh my heart.

Agreed. Although the irony of Peggy's clash/revelation with Stan is that it was Don who pulled her through that whole crisis, with his "it will shock you how much this never happened."

And it's true that men had/have an easier time walking away from things like pregnancy and family, and that Peggy's choice has affected her ever since far more than it has affected Pete.

But it's also true that Don was deceiving himself back then (as well as Peggy) about the ability to make things un-happen. Don's never escaped his past, either, though the whole history of MM has been about his trying.

And yeah, there was the little nod to Pete's loss, as well, looking at Peggy with the little girl (and in the context of his own inadequacy with his marriage and parenting).

There are layers and layers in there.

Add to this the contrast between Joan's treatment vs the men's at the hands of McCann, and her struggle with history and family and work. So much was packed into just the last two episodes, with all the new developments echoing events of the last decade.
posted by torticat at 5:18 AM on April 27, 2015


The loss of the Sterling name was so poignant. In the episode he reflects on the end of the name in the family sense, but it's prompted by his resistance to the loss of the agency name (which was all he'd had left).

That conversation between Roger and Bruce about the value of names reminded me that Don still has his real name to work with.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:18 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


"Enjoy the rest of your miserable life."

That does not bode well.
posted by drezdn at 5:58 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


"Scout's Honor" ended up being called "Astroganger."
posted by drezdn at 6:05 AM on April 27, 2015


Tammy drew a picture of Ted Chaough on her "draw a man" test.
posted by drezdn at 6:08 AM on April 27, 2015 [14 favorites]


We've been watching the first season in tandem with these last episodes, and just last night we happened to watch the episode in which Betty is used as a pawn in McCann's attempt to lure Don, by having her model in an ad for Coca-Cola. I think that's why the guy whispers "Coca-Cola" to him.

The arcs between the first and last seasons really are a thing of beauty. And I still maintain—especially after all the talk this episode about names—that Don will return to Dick Whitman. (In another season-one episode where we learn about Dick, the final shot is of his office door closing, and the camera zooms in on the DON DRAPER name on the door.)

The only slightly false note in this episode, for me, was that last shot. I think it's pretty unlikely that a company's entire staff would just walk away in the middle of a company meeting, and Don's "new beginning" line felt a little contrived—though his failure to pitch and land the sale on that idea was a nice coda to his failure to sell McCann on the idea of SCDP West.

BTW, in that same episode in which McCann is chasing Don, Roger tries to get him to stay, which Don ultimately decides to do. One of his reasons? He doesn't want to stay in advertising forever. THAT was a revelation, given the way the rest of the series has unfolded.

So. Many. Layers.
posted by flyingsquirrel at 6:08 AM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


No, I don't think Don is actually excited. I think he's trying to tell himself he is, but like all the staff at SC&P at the end, he doesn't really believe it. That last scene was incredibly important.

I pointed out last week that each episode was ending with Don alone, just having shed part of the vestments of Don Draper. He lost his wife, then his furniture, then his home. Now, the next logical thing, the agency he built, is gone. But instead of the episode ending with him alone, it ended with him being drowned out in a crowd. The name of Don Draper no longer carries weight anymore. It doesn't inspire people to action and awe like it did. Don didn't even tell Peggy about what was happening, didn't bring her in as a conspirator like when the formed SCDP. It was left to Pete to tell her.

Everything that made Don "Don Draper" is falling away. The only things that are left, as far as I can figure are his kids and his name.
posted by dry white toast at 6:12 AM on April 27, 2015 [9 favorites]


Specifically, when the guy whispers "Coca-Cola" to Don, and Don's face takes on this glow and subtle grin, like a kid getting a puppy. It just didn't seem very Don-like to be so disarmed and enraptured like that over getting a client (no matter how huge.)

I loved that scene because you realize halfway through that the McCann exec is actually pitching them, as he probably has for many clients. I saw Don's smile as more of a smirk, as he came to this same revelation. One pitchman recognizing the work of another.
posted by lunasol at 6:14 AM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


Also TRUDY TRUDY TRUDY!!!

You can have your "NOT GREAT, BOB"s and "I have a child on the way"s and "JIMINY CHRISTMAS!!"s. For my money, "THE KING ORDERED IT!!" is the best Pete-ism of all time.
posted by dry white toast at 6:17 AM on April 27, 2015 [50 favorites]


"You've died and gone to advertising heaven..."

Also does not bode well.
posted by drezdn at 6:21 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


When Hobart mentioned Coke, it looked like Ted was way more interested than Don.
posted by drezdn at 6:22 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


STEGGY TEASING!

Due to the constraints of my time-space reality, I could only listen to it. I'll watch it over lunch.
posted by tilde at 6:23 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Coke came up last week, too, by the way. "I could have you shot for drinking anything but a Coke around here." It wasn't a reference to Don's drinking (it was a brown bottle but it looked like a root beer to me, also served in brown bottles) but to the fact that it wasn't a CokeTM at all.
posted by tilde at 6:27 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


It seems like McCann may have took over SC&P as part of a long standing grudge because Don wouldn't work for them back in season one. That seems to be the underlying point of Tammy not being accepted into that one school because of the Campbell family's inability to accept guest right hundreds of years ago.
posted by drezdn at 6:27 AM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


Hello, IT WAS ORDERED BY THE KING.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:42 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


I want to see Dick Whitman go to McCann's headquarters with a piece of chalk and mark the foundation with the hobo code for "a dishonest man lives here."
posted by flyingsquirrel at 7:03 AM on April 27, 2015 [21 favorites]


"Stop struggling. You've won."

They don't know how to win, Jim.
posted by dry white toast at 7:04 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Great episode, my only disappointment was the "Previously on..." teaser led me to believe we'd be seeing Julio.
posted by The Gooch at 7:19 AM on April 27, 2015


Also, it was great to know that the episode was directed by Jared Harris. It was nice way to feel Lane's presence again, even if he couldn't feasibly be on screen. I also love that Harris directed an episode that had Pete finally winning a fight.
posted by dry white toast at 7:21 AM on April 27, 2015 [26 favorites]




That seems to be the underlying point of Tammy not being accepted into that one school because of the Campbell family's inability to accept guest right hundreds of years ago.

For a few glorious weeks, Sundays are now Mad Men/Game of Thrones night. So it kinda felt like a tiny bit of Game of Thrones crept into Mad Men. Not surprising to know that Pete is descended from some real life Freys. Yes, different side of the guest right equation, but still. /nerd

Also, it was great to know that the episode was directed by Jared Harris. It was nice way to feel Lane's presence again, even if he couldn't feasibly be on screen.

Perfect too, with the echoes of "Shut the Door. Have a Seat." Lane's finest hour.
posted by lunasol at 7:58 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


T & Lo recap/review is up.
posted by palomar at 8:18 AM on April 27, 2015


Pete was so good and so human in this one. Telling Peggy about McCann was hugely redemptive for him (notice how their outfits matched? they are perfectly in step). Pete getting caught in a 300-year-old Scottish imbroglio and punching the headmaster was a Great Pete Moment. And him being comforting and human to Joan...

So good and so wonderfully true to his character... So much so that I'm actually a little worried about him.

I love that Peggy told Stan about the choice she'd made. I like that it's something she thinks about that isn't always telegraphed. And I liked Stan's reaction.

I had thought we were done with Diana, but maybe we aren't.

I would like for Joan to do more than just leave and get married. That would have been her goal in 1960, but not now. Is that another example of Joan getting what she wants, but in the worst possible way? Everything she wants, but 10 years after she wants it?
posted by mochapickle at 8:23 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Also, it was great to know that the episode was directed by Jared Harris.

It was just wonderful. I loved the direction in this episode.
posted by mochapickle at 8:24 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


And Meredith. Dropped the ditz because shit just got real. "My goodness, Meredith. We should put a bell on you."

"Meredith, sweetheart--"
"Don't 'sweetheart' me."

She still looks like she's trying to spend all her time not laughing. What a weird default expression.

I love Stan and Peggy on the phone, like the old days. I could spend hours on the phone, shy as I am, talking to people I'm not in the same room with. Seems to be a safe fall back for them. Intimate, whispering in each other's ears. I guess the internet is us shouting at each other's eyeballs.

Peter, Trudy's right. You can't punch everyone. I wonder what the hell made him think of Secor Laxatives after he punched that guy. He's getting soft, he gave Peggy a huge heads up. I'm wondering if Trudy and Pete might make up. They aren't so bitter anymore and Trudy's running into the reality of being a divorcee in the 1970s. Guess Charlie Fiddich didn't divorce ... Laura? after all.

Joan ... oh boy. Nice to put her and Pete together again, even if just to hammer home how screwed she is and how much he still thinks she should be "promoting looking at the bright side". She's right, though, despite Hobart "giving" her one of the five best jobs in advertising, she shouldn't count on shit.

The look on Don's face when he found out about Marie and that Megan knew about it. Priceless. PRICELESS.
posted by tilde at 8:28 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Pete was so good and so human in this one.

Oh, yes. This was the first really satisfying episode of this truncated season, for me, and it's all because of Pete and Peggy. And the upper management tap-dancing furiously once again to try to keep things together, but it's time to see what happens when they can't pull off a last-minute magic trick. I love it.
posted by rewil at 8:36 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Joan's taxi ride with Pete was one of my favorite scenes in the episode. Joan's so resigned, but Pete is still at least feigning optimism for her, "They don't know who they're dealing with." This is really the payoff to that scene with McCann's Macy's account reps. Joan has already had a glimpse of what she'll be up against. I wonder if she'll pull a Bob-to-Buick and end up in-house at Avon. Would that fall under her non-compete?

I love Stan and Peggy on the phone, like the old days.

Yes! I don't think they'll end up explicitly together (although I'd love that), but I'm happy there's one person in the world who knows most of Peggy's secrets and flaws and likes her for all of them.

What happened to Diana? Do I care? I'm not sure. Don really is completely unmoored now.
posted by gladly at 8:39 AM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


The moment where the McCann guy tells Don to sit down is incredible -- Don instantly goes from looking confident and powerful to looking a little amateurish, a little flustered, a lesser salesman compared to this man's power and polish. Far more than Don's drunken pitch to Hershey's, it felt like the end of Don to me. His failure with Hershey's happened because he had a high place to fall from; it was ugly and uncomfortable, but it also felt tragic and big. This was just a gentle stumble onto a lower step, a settling into something that was always true.

When I was in college, I would've argued that this episode was about the transition in mainstream masculinity from a kind of power that's all about strength and argumentation to a kind of power that's all about showing a subtler, more intuitive intelligence -- typified by Stan's figuring out a central truth about Peggy, and that equally incredible scene where he visibly realizes that his whole relationship with her, including all their running jokes and tensions, is based on a total misreading. Now that I'm much older, I feel that the Don model of masculinity never really left us, but that scene between Stan and Peggy still feels like a moment of optimism for me. A moment in history when men and women were looking at the ways the other one had been taught to act and taking the best from both.

In the end I think it was a powerful episode because it represented everyone accepting with grace that they're not each other's enemies and that they've all lost badly together. Their time as lead actors is over; they're about to become minor players within a greater power, and the petulant upstart, the tragic hero, the fool, the wounded femme fatale and so forth are all going to have to go back into the box.
posted by thesmallmachine at 8:46 AM on April 27, 2015 [23 favorites]


The name of Don Draper no longer carries weight anymore. It doesn't inspire people to action and awe like it did.

Awe, no, but I'll bet that if even a single employee there was around at the time of the formation of SCDP from the ashes of SC, there was plenty of action: all of it focused on time to look for a new gig while we can!

I had thought we were done with Diana, but maybe we aren't.

PLEASE CAN WE BE DONE WITH DIANA.

posted by psoas at 8:46 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Also, finally we see Dawn again; (a) she looks exactly the same but (b) she got to make the big announcement that set the agency on fire. Heavy.
posted by psoas at 8:48 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Part of me suspects that Diana is dead, and that will come up somehow (perhaps a la Toby and the Homeless Vet) in the next episode.

My husband and I have a bet - he says we're going to see an actual carousel (ie: with horses and stuff) featured somehow in the last episode. We'll see.
posted by anastasiav at 8:49 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


Loved the conversation between Dawn and Shirley.

I was so wrong about Peggy and Stan being put to bed. I don't think we're going to see Brian Krakow again. I think Peggy already let that go. And now Stan let go of Elaine. For the first time ever, I think, Stan respects Peggy. I really, really want them to end up together.

Loved, too, how well Trudy still works with Pete, pushing him to go after Secor. They could end up together again, I think. But boy, is Pete checked out of fatherhood.

Joan. I don't know. I wonder if she's going to get out of the ad business altogether. Avon would be good for her. She needs to get away from the lasting legacy of Herb, I think.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:56 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


Get thee behind me, spell checker.

I'm noticing that Stan and Peggy didn't hang up. They just sat on the phone breathing at each other while the announcement was going on.
posted by tilde at 8:56 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


PLEASE CAN WE BE DONE WITH DIANA.

This. 100% this. I just couldn't get on board with a new character arc so close to the end when there are so many more characters that need resolution.
posted by Dr. Zira at 8:57 AM on April 27, 2015 [9 favorites]


Also: Diana. In the past, Don has largely sough escape with a woman (Rachel, Suzanne, Megan) or via a woman (Anna). I think that's what Don was trying here, with Diana (and in a way, with SC&P too) and I don't think it's going to work anymore. I think the series is going to end with him going to California alone.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:58 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Pete has always had such an odd combination of perspective and the total lack of perspective. On the one hand, he always has to punch everybody; on the other, he's capable of stepping out of the context of one of his awful relationships to recognize the bullshit the other person is going through and commiserate with them -- whether he's honest about it, as in his conversation with Trudy about her life as a divorcée, or obviously dishonest, as in his attempts to make Joan feel better, which fall flat because they both know what's what. He's slightly more than a grimy little pimp.
posted by thesmallmachine at 8:58 AM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


tilde: "The look on Don's face when he found out about Marie and that Megan knew about it. Priceless. PRICELESS."

Yes. He goes from drunk to 100% dead sober in about .3 seconds.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:09 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


He's slightly more than a grimy little pimp.

He knows how to empathize. It's what makes him a great account man.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 9:10 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'd be OK with Diana getting washed up in the river, and Don has to identify the body.
posted by mochapickle at 9:15 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


It was telling to me that Trudy contemplated moving back to the city while Pete said it's become a toilet. That was always a flashpoint in their marriage: Pete hated leaving the city and their marriage went downhill once they did.

Also, Peggy and Stan staying on the phone during the announcement reminded me of Peggy wandering into the office all in a haze after her weekend with Abe just as the partners were announcing that Lucky Strike was leaving. And her walking out just as the company was celebrating landing Jaguar. Turning points in the company have tended to happen simultaneously but separately from turning points in her own life. So I feel like we're meant to recognize that moment as a turning point for her.
posted by dry white toast at 9:29 AM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


part of a long standing grudge because Don wouldn't work for them back in season one.

Well, the recruiter does say McCann is known to be vindictive...

I instantly pinged on the naive style colonial portrait of noble ancestors on the schoolmaster's wall: that is like the ultimate WASP old family trump card.
posted by The Whelk at 11:53 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


My "what the hell is happening" moment: when Don went looking for Diana and ended up being propositioned by two gay guys instead. Well helLO, sailor!
posted by ChrisTN at 12:05 PM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


Pete won this episode. Pete at both his best and his most Petey.
posted by codacorolla at 12:32 PM on April 27, 2015 [15 favorites]


Pete and Trudy are always at their best when they team up against a common adversary. They seemed to automatically go into married-couple mode, clasping hands and turning in toward each other to speak to the principal.

That shot, though, of Pete and Peggy in their blue, on the blue sofa with that blue painting centred behind them. Brilliant. I found myself looking at colour cues in the Steggy scene and comparing. Both in brown, but not complimenting each other in the same way. Not connecting the way that Peggy and Pete connect.
posted by tracicle at 12:42 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I found myself looking at colour cues in the Steggy scene and comparing. Both in brown, but not complimenting each other in the same way. Not connecting the way that Peggy and Pete connect.

She's had his number for years. This is the first time, as either someone above or TLO noted, she's opened up and he's realized he's got her all wrong.
posted by tilde at 12:48 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stan has his brown and white scarf, Peggy has a brown and white outfit. It's not a perfect connection head to toe, but it's there.

So much happened this episode. It's picking up momentum and I think the end is gonna hit me like a ton of bricks.

Also, apropos to nothing, I once barfed in the lobby of the Time Life building! I never realized it was the same place.
posted by mochapickle at 12:53 PM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


Pete and Trudy are always at their best when they team up

See also, Charleston. (okay just watched it with the sound up, sorry!) (original sound)
posted by tilde at 1:00 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


The next episode is called "Lost Horizon" - a film Don was watching in the first episode of season seven. The film is about finding Shangri-La, which like the "utopia" Don and Rachel spoke of way back in season one is both a perfect place and a place that cannot exist. Sounds like McCann-Erickson to me. "You've died and gone to advertising heaven."
posted by crossoverman at 1:34 PM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Turns out the Massacre of Glencoe - the Campbell/McDonald feud mentioned in this episode was also GRR Martin's inspiration for the Castamere massacre. Amazing.
posted by crossoverman at 1:40 PM on April 27, 2015 [11 favorites]


but will peggy bring her dragons to McCann?
posted by The Whelk at 1:57 PM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


the Campbell/McDonald feud mentioned in this episode was also GRR Martin's inspiration for the Castamere massacre. Amazing.

When you play the game of ads, you win or they don't buy anything.
posted by nubs at 2:02 PM on April 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


Pete and Trudy are always at their best when they team up

I always saw Trudy as Pete's perfect Lady Macbeth (albeit less tragically). Knowing that the Campbell's have Scottish roots makes the parallel all the more apt.

Man, that is some sweet sweet historical referencing. I love you, Matthew Weiner.
posted by dry white toast at 2:06 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Also Stan's hair, scarf and bell bottoms were utterly resplendent in this episode.
posted by dry white toast at 2:07 PM on April 27, 2015 [13 favorites]


I think the series is going to end with him going to California alone.

PhoBWan, I think you're right. If it weren't for Megan, I'd imagine him doing it as Dick Whitman, not Don Draper.
posted by umbú at 2:25 PM on April 27, 2015


Oh wow, great episode.

I totally teared up when Peggy was talking to Stan. She was so raw. It opens up her character that she really must have this in the back of her mind at all times - I know I would. This is clearly due to the cultural pressure of marriage, kids, and gasp! that she's 30! Whereas Pete and Stan don't have that pressure on them. Just overall a wonderful scene.

I like the tension in the office. The rumors flying on little information. It's great and realistic.

I literally yelled "Go Meredith" at my screen by the way. She was GREAT standing up for herself. I love her character so much. Like how she sees everyone storm into Don's office and says "Do you need ice?"
posted by Crystalinne at 2:27 PM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm also starting to think he'll end up in California. Maybe he'll buy Anna Draper's old house, go back to being Dick Whitman, take long swims in the ocean and help out the neighbors with their muscle cars on the weekend.
posted by ladybird at 2:28 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


This week's Lil' Friendys (By Mefi's own Greg Nog) is obliquely Mad Men related, as well as corporate misogyny in general (also about a lake of fire)
posted by The Whelk at 2:51 PM on April 27, 2015


I love that painting in Pete's office: Sailboats on calm seas.

Pete lost both parents to a watery fate: His dad in an airplane that plunged into the bay, his mother overboard a cruise ship. Pete is contemplating his professional fate. It just wouldn't be the same if he had flowers, or lines, or a portrait.
posted by mochapickle at 2:53 PM on April 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


Yeah I instantly thought "That ...seems ...inappropriate"
posted by The Whelk at 2:54 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


From T&Lo:
Don Draper has lost his family, his wife, his home, and now his career. The only thing he has left is his name – and it’s not his name.

I think he's lost his agency but not yet his career. That'll be the next to go. And then he'll lose Don Draper.
posted by crossoverman at 3:14 PM on April 27, 2015


I'm happy that Dawn finally made a reappearance, but damn was it too small of one! I hope she gets some more resolution before the finale.

Also I think the ending should feature Don submitting to Nominative Determinism and opening up a curtain shop. Or becoming a stand-up comedian, depending on which name is the most deterministic.
posted by mrjohnmuller at 3:27 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


In my excitement at everything else in the episode, I forgot to talk about Lou moving to Tokyo to develop Scout's Honor with Tatsunoko. He's achieved a level of uncoolness so extreme that he's warped all the way back around to the cutting edge -- a Westerner making anime in 1970. In twelve years Tatsunoko will be working on Macross/Robotech.

Of course, when Lou arrived, they were mostly doing dorky-sounding kids' shows, into which Scout's Honor sounds like it would fit fairly well.

It's deeply weird that a Pacific Theater WWII vet (which I assume Lou is, given his age, military background, and taste for tiki kitsch) would end up making satirical army cartoons in Japan, but he sounds over the moon about it, so I guess his love of cartooning, money, and making Don miserable knows no borders. Good for Lou.
posted by thesmallmachine at 3:27 PM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


Peggy parroting the old school justification for closed adoption. .. "it's the only way you'll be able to move on with your life" ... so sad. You have to wonder how much of her nine-month denial was rooted in something other than "I want a career."

Back then the outcome would likely have been a closed adoption whether or not she was career minded. Either that or get Pete to do the right thing, but coercion on that level really isn't in Peggy's playbook.
posted by Sheydem-tants at 3:34 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


With everything Don's losing these episodes, I can't watch a scene with Sterling without total anxiety. Him smoking the cigarettes with that flippant line about quitting, then coming clean to Don about Marie, and grabbing Don's face and kissing him goodbye…It was then I fully realized that he's the last of Sterling Cooper. So when he took a step backward during the staff announcement, I was bracing myself for a full-on collapse.
posted by iamkimiam at 3:45 PM on April 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


Also, the end of the scene in the McCann Erickson board room was just spectacular. All of the men are laid back in their chairs, satisfied and marveling. While Joan is still perched forward, expectant. And the window frames, each one of them perfectly.
posted by iamkimiam at 3:47 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ken is dinnering at the same white cloth restaurant as Don, Roger, and wives in The Ladies Room S1E2.
posted by tilde at 3:49 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


We just keep going, "Oh, oh... Roger's gonna die." "Oh, oh... Diana's dead."
posted by St. Hubbins at 3:54 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


I just learned that the song that plays in the background while Peggy and Stan are talking in the office is Stranger on the Shore, by Acker Bilk. Very apt and very clever, that.
posted by iamkimiam at 3:57 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm scared for Roger too. I really liked that hug with Joan as she was leaving the bar. Speaking of, Joan must really be feeling all the stress from those late night wizard calls but at least we know she makes it until the end of the series.
posted by Brainy at 3:58 PM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Yes! I noticed the hug too … it was lovely. (and again, it terrified me)
posted by iamkimiam at 3:59 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Joan's also hugging Roger after talking to Ferg... He's always turning to her to solve him when he's not glomming onto the chick of the week. "What am I going to do?" he asks.

Peggy is in Blue (Madonna) to deal with the kids (she was when she had Kevin launched at her a few seasons back too).
posted by tilde at 4:01 PM on April 27, 2015


Wow. Pete was in blue and Peggy in brown when she told him about the baby.

Stan is in blue and Peggy is in brown when she told him about the baby.
posted by tilde at 4:30 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


That's a great catch, tilde! Though now I have the Clash in my head:

You grow up and you calm down
You're working for the clampdown
You start wearing blue and brown
You're working for the clampdown

(and further lyrics about having someone to boss around, and making your first kill, which are less relevant to the sartorial subtext of Mad Men -- though I guess Peggy fulfills the first part of that and came close to the second once)
posted by thesmallmachine at 4:49 PM on April 27, 2015


I got the impression that Roger whispered something to Joan when they had That Hug - she certainly seemed to pull back slightly in reaction.
posted by coriolisdave at 6:01 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


iamkimiam: And the window frames, each one of them perfectly.

Kind of like this?
posted by mochapickle at 6:49 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Nope. White shirt and red white blue plaid skirt.

Toooo manyrewatches
posted by tilde at 7:02 PM on April 27, 2015


Roger totally whispered something to Joan!

I can't shake the feeling that someone is doomed here.

-Don: Possibly but not probably.
-Roger: Seems most likely to me. He's off whispering secret things to Joan and talking about legacy. Also, I would pay good money to watch Mona and Marie meet at the funeral. (Seriously, I could watch a whole season of Mona and Marie watching paint dry.)
-Pete: He was so redeeming this episode after being a little pest for so long. His office has a painting of a body of water (also: blue!) that's reminiscent of how his parents died. A potential rekindling with Trudy seems possible and just hopeful enough to doom him. (From the pilot: "I'm giving up my life to be with you, aren't I?") Also, I would be OK with Trudy stomping around NYC as a well-heeled dowager well into the next century.
-Joan: Nah, I don't think she dies.
-Ted: Ted neither.
-Harry: He deserves it, but no.
-Stan: That would just be cruel.
-Peggy: Probably not, nor should she.

I'm so frightened for them! I bit off all my nails this morning.

The Peggy thing. The series starts with her very first day at Sterling Cooper, so it makes sense that it would end with her very last. But I don't literally think it means her last day on earth.
posted by mochapickle at 7:04 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


But we might have seen everybody's last day at SC&P! They are out within the month, meaning the time jump to next episode might put them in McCann's clutches next episode. I could imagine one more episode at SC&P, but usually we don't get that kind of time to dwell on changes. (The biggest surprise Weiner could pull right now is to have the next three episodes take place within that 30 days.)
posted by crossoverman at 7:13 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I loved when Trudy and Pete were in the headmaster's office and he said that Tammy's drawing of a man had a mustache. Pete's affronted "a mustache!?" aimed at Trudy was just perfect.
posted by apricot at 7:34 PM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


Don is without an apartment and an office in less than thirty days.

And then I keep remembering that he's a millionaire, and I figure he'll probably do okay for himself.

I'd like to hear more speculation about what the final scene meant. Regardless of whether it struck a realistic tone, I think it was supposed to be significant that they couldn't even get the whole announcement out. Was it supposed to convey a shifting in cultural authority, so that those who were used to ruling the roost weren't taken as seriously any more? Was it supposed to say that the employees saw through the buzz words that were being used to describe the current situation, and thus Don and company were losing a grip on their ability to "advertise" solutions? That people were becoming more cynical in the early 70s about shiny exteriors that cover other agendas? I think it was supposed to be a lot deeper than people just not paying attention. They seemed genuinely surprised that people weren't paying attention, like they had lost their grip on something significant.
posted by SpacemanStix at 8:10 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Parallel to Weiner shutting down the show. It might be a grand exit or a sad swan song to the main players but to the workers it's just another pink slip.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:14 PM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Also Stan's hair, scarf and bell bottoms were utterly resplendent in this episode.

There was a moment this episode in one of these scenes with Stan and I had an overwhelming urge to rush to metafilter and register the sock puppet "Stan's Beard". I don't know why; it seemed the only appropriate tribute to his beautiful 70s mane.

But then realized that would be silly, because surely it's be registered already, right? I haven't looked, because I don't want to and if it's open, I'm not sure I could help myself

I really loved the scene between her and Stan where she tells him and he just accepts her. I wasn't totally on the Steggy train, but am now. The phone call was so nice.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 8:25 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


It might be a grand exit or a sad swan song to the main players but to the workers it's just another pink slip.

Bingo, I think. What do they care about the company's mythology or the partners' personal legacy -- they have resumes to update.
posted by thesmallmachine at 9:25 PM on April 27, 2015


Sombrero sighting at 13:23 (right before the conversation with Lou).
posted by willF at 9:26 PM on April 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


It might be a grand exit or a sad swan song to the main players but to the workers it's just another pink slip.

Agree with that, but I also think it's another failure of persuasion on Don's part. He can't get anyone to let him even finish his pitch--it happens first with his superiors at McCann and then again with the underlings at SC&P.
posted by torticat at 9:39 PM on April 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


So, I wonder what those Nancy cartoons are about on Peggy's door.
posted by willF at 9:46 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


The look on Don's face when he found out about Marie and that Megan knew about it. Priceless. PRICELESS.

Wait until he finds out what Sally knew about Marie and Roger. And how and when she found out.

Was it supposed to convey a shifting in cultural authority, so that those who were used to ruling the roost weren't taken as seriously any more?

That's the way I saw it. The "old guard" was essentially being dismissed at nearly every turn.
posted by fuse theorem at 10:11 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I saw it that way, too: The '60s were a transition between the postwar '50s of conformity and respect for authority and the skepticism of the '70s.

The other day, I was looking at my mother's school pictures from the '60s and her magnificent flippy bouffant. She's pretty earthy and natural now and she quickly confessed the '60s do had been a total pain to maintain. When I asked her why she did it every year, for every picture, she said, "It's just what people did."

The last shot in this episode is wonderful. The five partners are standing there and they're anything but a united front, sartorially:

- Joan is in an aqua blouse and a floral skirt.
- Roger is in a bright blue double-breasted jacket with wide lapels.
- Don is a pillar in a charcoal suit and a solid crimson tie (he has never worn a solid crimson tie before!).
- Ted, oh heaven help me because his costumes make me collapse in a heap of giggles, is wearing a tan checked jacket with oxblood pants, an orange shirt, and a toffee-hued tie.
- Pete is in a three piece gray suit with a striped tie.

The color scheme is amazing. I wouldn't have listened to them, either.

Compare this to the McCann announcements from "Guy Walks Into An Advertising Agency" (and hee! I just got the joke that his name is Guy and he doesn't walk out!) and the suits are all gray and black and in identical cuts. A force to be reckoned with.
posted by mochapickle at 10:43 PM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Also Roger is wearing like, the most dated possible outfit for that scene, a tightly tailored navy double breasted blazer? He might as well have been wearing a cutaway topcoat and knee britches.
posted by The Whelk at 12:03 AM on April 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


Last scene will be him walking into a job interview and introducing himself as Dick Whitman.
posted by ian1977 at 4:30 AM on April 28, 2015 [4 favorites]


Trudy's hat and side curls make her look like a Hasidic man.
posted by brujita at 6:01 AM on April 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


My older sister had that exact same look as Trudy (sans hat) when she went to prom in 1972. As the little sister I thought it was tres chic. I remember the straightened hair and pink foam curlers for the side locks, hairsprayed to perfection.
posted by readery at 7:12 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah, my mother-in-law had that style in her wedding photos in 1973 (in NZ, so a little behind the rest of the world...).
posted by tracicle at 7:16 AM on April 28, 2015


The camera lingered for a few beats on the Coke can on Meredith's desk. I like the way it looked, and I thought: product placement. But by the end of the episode? Product placement as foreshadowing. Very clever, ad wizards.
posted by hush at 7:22 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm curious whether Meredith really has untold depths or if it's just that things are so out-of-control that it's pierced even her rainbows-and-butterflies shield of obliviousness.

If there were some big reveal that she and Bob Benson were in on a long con together, I cannot say I wouldn't be immensely pleased.
posted by psoas at 8:52 AM on April 28, 2015 [16 favorites]


Don makes a Dad Joke. (From reddit.)
posted by tracicle at 9:57 AM on April 28, 2015 [6 favorites]


"The king ordered it!" S7, E11

"You're my king." "Okay." S6, E5
posted by tilde at 10:20 AM on April 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


I think Trudy is making an overture. She left out information and conversations when she roped Pete in. She wanted to be helpless and have him fix it. And what's left who isn't him are mostly ties with mustaches ;).
posted by tilde at 10:55 AM on April 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


I was definitely getting the vibe that Trudy and Pete(r) may be reconciling.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:59 AM on April 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm curious whether Meredith really has untold depths or if it's just that things are so out-of-control that it's pierced even her rainbows-and-butterflies shield of obliviousness.

Meredith was a child genius and the brains behind a super-secret WW2 backup plan at Oak Ridge: The Merry Death Project. When the war ended and her program skidded to a halt, she had a total psychotic breakdown.

The military, unsure of what to do with Meredeath but unable to confine her, left her on a leafy neighborhood block in Long Island with only the clothes she was wearing. She was adopted by a pediatrician and his wife and had as normal a childhood as could be expected, although always a C student. Her clothing choices always remained the same: A pastel dress, a pinafore, knee socks, mary janes, and a floppy hair ribbon.
posted by mochapickle at 12:25 PM on April 28, 2015 [11 favorites]


And learned to copy other successful women's wear. Joan started the episode in a dark blouse with small white dots; Meredith exploded* it into her version later on.

*notice the framing of Meredith in the first image.
posted by tilde at 1:27 PM on April 28, 2015 [4 favorites]


The precise moment of Don's fall isn't when Jim says, "Don, stop. This isn't necessary." It's when Roger has to step in to defend him: "Jim, would you let him finish?" No.
posted by adrianhon at 3:44 PM on April 28, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm really excited by the fact that we still have three episodes left. We saw so much plot, and Don's fallen so far, that things feel very open. I wouldn't be surprised to see things start arcing up for him, in a way, as they often do towards the end of a season. I favour the Dick Whitman hypothesis as mentioned by others.
posted by adrianhon at 3:47 PM on April 28, 2015


Flashbacks to the empty office before it's built out...the partners, empty-handed and a bit expectant, though so much change has happened.
posted by mynameisluka at 7:14 PM on April 28, 2015


Isn't Kevin - Joan's son - biologically Roger Sterling's. With Roger's talk of only son of only son with an only daughter, I assumed whatever he whispered to Joan was something to do with Kevin becoming a Sterling.
posted by Lil Bit of Pepper at 8:40 PM on April 28, 2015 [7 favorites]


I know why he'd want to make Kevin a Sterling, if just to keep the name alive. I don't really see any reason why Joan would want that.

But yes, another delicious irony in an episode about losing your name/identity. Sterling's genes live on but his name is gone.
posted by crossoverman at 10:51 PM on April 28, 2015


So Joan would tell the world that she had an affair with Roger by naming his son after her? Not going to happen. Remember, Joan is Old world.
posted by dry white toast at 4:36 AM on April 29, 2015


I had to go back and watch that scene! The whisper took about two seconds, so I think there wouldn't have been time for Roger to broach something so complex. I'm thinking he said one of two things:

A. "It's going to be OK, Joanie."
B. "I'm going to be OK, Joanie."

The first one results in that resigned stare she gives him because Joan thinks Roger doesn't see anticipate how Joan will be excluded at McCann with no named accounts. The second one results in that same resigned stare she gives him because it's just a selfish thing to say, and it's always been all about Roger. Both would work in that situation.

The scene before, when they're framed in the window, there's a bright cobalt blue ashtray in the center of the table, right in front of Don. Do the blues seem to be getting more intense in these last episodes?
posted by mochapickle at 6:48 AM on April 29, 2015


And we got an out the window reference ... "Caroline's going to elbow me out a window." - Shirley commenting on how they don't need another Black girl, especially Roger Sterling's second secretary.

What scene are we talking about? If they're on the sofa, he only whispered, "What do I do?"
posted by tilde at 7:50 AM on April 29, 2015


Ah... At the end, when they're out drinking beers after meeting with McCann, and Joan gets up to leave. She hugs Ted and Don, then Roger. Roger whispers something to her. Joan stares at Roger for a moment, then leaves.
posted by mochapickle at 7:54 AM on April 29, 2015


Ah, okay, thanks. I thought it was just an extended hug. See, with the crazy Marie thing he's got going on (maybe she goes out the window, trying to attack him in an LSD rampage) I figured that he getting back together with Joan would never happen (especially after she hooked up with Captain Pike).

I dunno. I dunno. I don't think ... but again, Tiny Screen Syndrome #firstworldproblems.
posted by tilde at 8:02 AM on April 29, 2015


Oh, definitely. I don't see them getting back together.

Although I liked how this episode made a nod toward the Season 1 couples, with both sets having private, candid moments together and comforting each other over some big changes: Roger and Joan, Peggy and Pete.
posted by mochapickle at 8:07 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


The whispering thing feels important, however. I just have a bad feeling Roger's not going to make it, and that whisper will be the last thing he ever says to Joan.
posted by mochapickle at 8:10 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


Seeing what's happened in these last few episodes really drives home what having Bert Cooper around did for the firm, even if he didn't actually do anything on a day-to-day basis.
posted by dry white toast at 8:41 AM on April 29, 2015 [6 favorites]


I think the last scene was, among other things, a reminder that the main characters on MM are all among the winners in a capitalist sense. The average SC&P employee doesn't really have a reason to trust what the partners are saying, and everyone knows it. The partners got their big payday, they'll be OK. The senior employees - Peggy, Stan - will probably find places to land at McCann and, if not, someone else will take them. But the mid-level copywriters and secretaries? Their jobs, and even their careers, are on the line, and they know it.

Don might be able to try to spin a way to convince himself that being swallowed up by McCann is an opportunity, for him and most of the colleagues he interacts with, even if he doesn't quite believe it. But he is never going to be able to convince the ordinary employees that this is anything other than completely uncertain, and they all know - and he doesn't quite understand - that their landings aren't going to be as soft as his if things don't break right.
posted by breakin' the law at 9:38 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


Or, to put it another way: Don sees uncertainty as an opportunity. He's seen it like that before. This episode gave us plenty of reasons to question whether he should still think that way, but, in a very concrete sense Don's gotten his and whether he can seize an opportunity or not doesn't really matter anymore. But, for the average SC&P employee, like the average person, uncertainty is not an opportunity, and for both cultural and personal reasons they just aren't listening to guys like Don the way they used to.
posted by breakin' the law at 9:43 AM on April 29, 2015


Mad Style: We keep hearing fan theories about Richard being some sort of psycho or con artist or sleazeball and it tends to remind us of all the old theories of Bob Benson being roughly the same, before we found out who he was.

I mean, Bob wasn't exactly truthful in setting up the situation in which an (admittedly unpleasant) elderly woman ended up dead. That's not sleaze-free.

They're right about Peggy's desk, though.
posted by rewil at 10:42 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


OMG, Peggy's desk! I never noticed. Wow.
posted by mochapickle at 11:07 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


Read Mad Style too fast:

That hair may look pretty ridiculous and “child pageant” to modern audiences, but that was a grownup’s hairstyle – and one you could only get in a prison.

Good call on Joan's hug to Don. "The hatchet is not buried but it's not in your back." I really forgot how mad she was at him. Should have rewatched first half of this season sooner.

I am going to have to listen to their podcast to hear them talk to "Meredith" but not until the series ends. Note to self.
posted by tilde at 12:29 PM on April 29, 2015


Seeing what's happened in these last few episodes really drives home what having Bert Cooper around did for the firm, even if he didn't actually do anything on a day-to-day basis.

Yes, when Don introduced Roger as the president of SC&P, my first thought was, "Oh, shit, Roger's in charge. There aren't any grownups left."
posted by thesmallmachine at 1:30 PM on April 29, 2015 [3 favorites]


I never understood the draw towards Stan before, but that all-denim outfit is doing it for me.
posted by likeatoaster at 1:43 PM on April 29, 2015 [4 favorites]


I really would like to see Stan and Peggy hook-up. He'd be like the giant teddy bear that she can wrap herself up in and feel safe and loved for once in her life. If anyone in this show deserves a happy ending, it's Peggy.

I've soured on Joan over the past few seasons, as she become more and more obsessed with money above all else. I understand her situation, of course, but her making every. damned. thing. about how much money ends up in her pocket has become very tiresome.

Roger, oddly enough, deserves a good ending, too, imho. He's never been anything but up-front about what he is, or what his motivations are, weaknesses and personal failings and all.
posted by Thorzdad at 3:58 PM on April 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm wondering if maybe Joan's obsession with money is a product of her marriage and divorce from Greg. Season 1, she has her eye on getting married and moving to the country. She marries Greg, who is a doctor, and with that comes security -- she hopes. Except Greg is a terrible person and a bad surgeon, and also a rapist. Joan soon realizes that if she wants money and security, she's going to have to go out and get it herself.

That's what's great about Joan: She's no longer counting on a man to supply that for her. And that's a giant leap from the 1950s when Joan would have first started working and 1960 when we met Joan, when it was the norm that women often just worked for a couple of years until they got snapped up for marriage and family and with that, an inevitable retreat from the working life. Heck, that was the expectation for a while. Even through today, to some degree.

Joan isn't waiting for her prince to come. Which is why I like Pike: She would have been fine without him, but I think it's a good thing for them both.
posted by mochapickle at 5:12 PM on April 29, 2015 [4 favorites]


Joan had seen her idol Marilyn Monroe successfully produce the movie Bus Stop.
posted by brujita at 6:12 PM on April 29, 2015


Do the blues seem to be getting more intense in these last episodes?


Yes! And I also noticed that there is a LOT of orange in this episode, and I mean a lot. (We just rewatched it.) When Peggy's in her office talking to Stan and asks him to stay on, the entire shot of Peggy is bathed in orange. Orange and blue, fire and ice. Not sure what to make of it, but man was it gorgeous to look at.
posted by flyingsquirrel at 6:35 PM on April 29, 2015


I've soured on Joan over the past few seasons, as she become more and more obsessed with money above all else. I understand her situation, of course, but her making every. damned. thing. about how much money ends up in her pocket has become very tiresome.

Have you forgotten how badly it went for her when she tried to find security and stability through marriage?
posted by dry white toast at 4:22 AM on April 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


No, I haven't forgotten all that.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:51 AM on April 30, 2015


The date is 1970. She still can't get a credit card in her own name.
posted by tilde at 6:26 AM on April 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


Also, Joan has Kevin, so she has every right to get money from Roger (and Roger has a history of paying out big when a relationship dissolves). She could have one conversation and be set for life. But she sticks to her principles and does things her own way. I respect that.

flyingsquirrel, now that you're pointing it out, I see red and orange EVERYWHERE. In the boardroom scene, there's even a giant orange arrow pointing forward right behind Jim Hobart's head. Yowza.

I'm not sure what the orange is (I love the orange in Peggy's outfit at the end! and the orange in the pillows in Pete's office) but in the context of this episode, red seems to mean violence or injury. The stapler girl's mom looks like a walking wound wrapped in a bandage (white and red, with the red dotting through).

All the partners wear a flash of red this time, save Ted: Roger wears a red pocketsquare in the scene where they discover why the lease is cancelled (like he's been stabbed in the heart, which is how he feels). Joan has flashes of red in the flowers in her skirt (like her legs have been cut -- meaningful because she's the one who runs around getting things done and making things work). Joan also wears a scarf dotted with red in the boardroom scene. Pete wears a red tie all day for the boarding school visit and the boardroom scene: He's been denied the access his bloodline and partnership have always afforded him.

The person who wears the brightest red is Don. The very last scene, making the announcement, he's wearing a crimson tie. I don't think we've seen him wear that color unbroken before. Don's used to thinking quickly and improvising, but even that's not working any more. He's suffering an injury here.
posted by mochapickle at 8:17 AM on April 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


The gay blogs are abuzz today that Kit Williamson ("Mad Men's Ed!") is engaged, and my first response was "Who the fuck is Ed?" ...And then after a little research, I realized he's the Other Copywriter who's been killing it with incredulous reaction shots as the fifth wheel in Peggy & Stan's pas-de-deux.

This show and its careful casting of minor characters: Bravo.
posted by psoas at 9:26 AM on April 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yes, there are two Other Copywriters, the wormy one and the one who always looks like he's trying not to laugh.
posted by The Whelk at 9:36 AM on April 30, 2015


I like the waitress. Fuck it. More waitress.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:45 PM on April 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


Even more than the actual waitress I like the fact that Don is now obsessed with the waitress.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:46 PM on April 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


This is Don. He gets obsessed. Chasing that something or someone. (Watching him in the hotel room with Sylvia last night reminded me.)

He's not going to find her but he'll always keep looking.
posted by tilde at 7:27 AM on May 1, 2015


Don always wants what is out of his reach. He's actually indifferent to whether he sleeps with Sylvia or not, until the moment she says no. Then he pleads with her, and spends the next episode obsessing about her.
posted by dry white toast at 10:10 AM on May 1, 2015


Pete deals with some old family business. Peggy babysits. Don gets interrupted during a pitch.
posted by dry white toast at 10:13 AM on May 1, 2015 [7 favorites]


Don's sombrero gently weeps. Joan and Roger embrace a call.
posted by tilde at 12:01 PM on May 1, 2015 [2 favorites]


Don misses a phone call. Harry is enthused by new developments. The partners go out for a drink.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:15 PM on May 1, 2015


Big screen watch. I don't think Roger whispered anything to Joan, but the kiss (Roger & Don & I never thought I'd write that outside of Fanfic) didajr me think Roger is gonna die.
posted by tilde at 6:34 PM on May 1, 2015


The Kiss

It does kind of feel like a kiss of death. And it would make sense given Roger's history, and the inevitable ending of things.
posted by tracicle at 10:56 PM on May 1, 2015


That was a thing in the Godfather, right? The kiss you give your opponent before you knock him off ...
But come on, that was just post LSD Roger expressing himself.
I really the like the two different ways these two men have of being men. Great portraits, both.
posted by From Bklyn at 2:28 AM on May 2, 2015


I wouldn't be shocked if Burt Peterson fired Roger.
posted by drezdn at 5:38 AM on May 2, 2015 [5 favorites]


Oh that scene in S6 is so good, it's worth it to watch it again.

That would be amazing and Roger would totally deserve it.
posted by mochapickle at 7:51 AM on May 2, 2015 [2 favorites]


"You're a real prick, you know that?"
"Damnit, Burt, you stole my goodbye!"

I love that almost as much as "maybe Jesus was just trying to get the loaves and fishes account".
posted by tilde at 5:48 PM on May 2, 2015 [1 favorite]


Isn't the death this season the agency not a person?
posted by zutalors! at 8:52 PM on May 3, 2015 [2 favorites]


I was wondering if Pete didn't go to Greenwich Country Day was related to the weird scene in season 1 where Pete's dad is declining to help Pete and Trudy with their first apartment. I didn't pick up until watching that scene the other day how withholding Pete's dad was and obviously related it was to how screwed up he was in season 1. Now watching this episode just now I wonder if that withholding also played into not sending Pete to the good school.
posted by bleep at 4:29 PM on May 17, 2015


BTW I think Meredith was the actual spy.
posted by bleep at 4:48 PM on May 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


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