Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Mad Men Episode #7 (Season 4) The Suitcase

Why Mad Men Episode #7 (Season 4) Worked:

  • The betting on the Liston-Clay fight. Another nice period detail.
  • Duck's birthday flowers to Peggy with the business card showing her as a creative director. The man can sell! But then the pitiful phone call where he's sitting home in the middle of the day hitting the sauce. In this show, booze comes across as public enemy #1 in 1960's advertising.
  • Don Draper's anti-Clay rant. It really shows that he's not really in touch with the new cultural realities of the mid-60s. I wonder if this will foreshadow some future business failures.
  • The fight between Don Draper and Peggy over creating advertising and who gets the credit. Best scene of the year (possible ever on Mad Men? Weigh in please.) The writing started going into Mamet territory. High praise indeed!
  • Peggy admitting she had never been on a plane. (A small moment but another great detail about the mid-60s. Airplane travel was a novelty for most Americans back then.)
  • Don Draper and Peggy drinking at the bar. At first I was getting nervous that this was going to take a sexual turn (and it was hanging in the air). But then it got to the baby she put up for adoption while the Liston-Clay fight was on in the background. Lots of interesting things happening all at once. Masterful.
  • Duck showing up in the office later that night and attempting to defecate on Don's furniture (even though it was really Roger's). And then the fight with Don. And Don puking. And then Don passing out in his office. OMG! So much happened. And all written and acted so perfectly.
  • And Don looking fresh and clean cut the next morning like nothing happened. What else did we expect? (Well...we are expecting him to really hit bottom at some point, right?)
  • The Simon & Garfunkle song at the end of the episode. The perfect ending to the perfect episode.

Why Mad Men Episode #7 (Season 4) Didn't Work:

  • Peg's mom had a botoxed forehead (during the dinner scene). A rare blown period detail. They couldn't find a middle-aged actress who had some age-appropriate wrinkles that would be standard in 1965?

Overall Grade for Mad Men Episode #7 (Season):

  • A. Best episode of the season.

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