By Miz J
PETE AND TRUDY, SCHMOOZING SUBURBANITES, ARE partying on a school night. The flirtation swirls around the house, and I’m wondering if these truly are the swinging 60s, wink.
The next morning, in a swank Manhattan penthouse, Don watches as Sylvia and Arnie bicker about money, and on the elevator, Don chooses to make a detour to visit the doctor’s wife. It’s then that the Pandora’s box opens (pun intended) and Don remembers his childhood at the whorehouse. Rolling over from a fresh romp, Sylvia asks Don, “You don’t mind sitting across the table from my husband and your wife?” Don says he doesn’t think about it — and it’s a whore’s answer if I ever heard one. And if that weren’t enough, he tosses a few bucks Sylvia’s way, saying she “found it in the cookie jar.”
If you haven’t noticed, a lot of catting around is happening on a weekday morning. First, Don with Sylvia and now Pete with one of the suburban housewives from the party. But they’re not the only ones getting fucked this week. Peggy is laying the smack-down on her all-male creative crew, and the clients are running roughshod over the boys at SCDP: Raymond at Heinz is pulling rank, keeping SCDP from chasing a lucrative piece of business, and Jaguar is looking for freebies.
As the day unfolds, Sylvia and Megan bond in the laundry room, after Megan fires the maid. Megan breaks down and tells Sylvia that she had a miscarriage just two days earlier. The time difference, the vacation in Hawaii…she sobs that she feels guilty because she was “sloppy.” And then she reveals that she still hasn’t told Don and she feels relived that she miscarried, which makes Sylvia (who is totally banging Don right now) reach for the cigarettes and say, “What do you have to feel guilty about?”
The prostitution angle is strong in this episode. We see it with Don’s childhood and adulthood; we see it in the way Pete interacts with his neighbors’ wives; we see it between Joan and the jagoff Jaguar client. A side note: Joan prefers to wait his visits out in Don’s office these days.
In another, less skanky side of the ad world, Stan and Peggy have taken to late-night calls at the office. Call it flirting, call it commiserating, but it’s probably just a little of both. Stan reveals the Heinz client’s demands, and Peggy shares the info with Ted, her new boss, who says, “There’s nothing like things falling apart after you leave, is there?” Turns out Ted wants Peggy to help him steal the Heinz client. As smarmy as this proposition is, Ted redeems himself by telling Peggy, “Your friend’s only mistake was underestimating you. I hope Heinz makes the same mistake so you can blow their mind.” Good point, Ted. Keep being awesome. Peggy deserves that after putting up with Don for so long.
Night falls on the city. Megan is not feeling well and bails on dinner plans with Sylvia and Arnie. As appetizers are served, Arnie is called away for work, leaving Sylvia and Don to contemplate their situation…and work it out in bed, of course. Upon arriving home, Megan reveals the miscarriage to Don, sobbing about how she’s not even sure it’s the right time to have a conversation about babies. “Whatever you want,” Don says, reciting another line he likely learned from a whore.
Out in the suburbs, Peter’s favorite new mistress-slash-neighbor ends up on his doorstep, bloodied and beaten by her husband after a fight. Pete scolds her, “What did you say to him?” And when she tells Pete to take her back into the city to be with him, he rejects her with the fire of a thousand suns, putting into motion an epic fight with Trudy, who knows all about Pete’s women.
The next morning, Don deftly undercuts the Jaguar client by pretending to give him what he wants: regional, unsexy radio ads instead of a prominent national campaign. He manages to “sell” it in a tone that makes it utterly undesirable to Herb’s bosses, infuriating Pete and Roger, who come into his office to bend Don’s ear about how he never plays by the rules. “He’s the CLIENT!,” Pete sputters, to which Don replies, “So what? We just keep saying yes?” Sounds like someone is getting tired of being everybody’s whore.
Don calls Jaguar “Munich,” referring to how America gave Germany everything they wanted and they still got dragged into a war. “Well, who won that war?” Pete shouts, leaving the room. That’s right. Pete invoked the “Because, AMERICA” defense. Nearly impossible to argue against, unless you’re quite literally a Nazi.
As the cleaning lady vacuums the mod office, new guy Bob sucks up to Pete: “First guy in, last guy out. Must be easy when you’re doing what you love.” Exhausted, with a drink in hand, Pete looks up warily and says, “Glad it looks that way to you.” This poor new guy is surrounded by whores. And since everyone has their price, it’s only a matter of time before he learns some very hard lessons.
Miz J has an attitude. Deal with it. Check out her NSFW comedy podcast, I SAID IT, on iTunes or follow her on Facebook or on Twitter @askmizj