Mad Men "The Quality of Mercy" Review: Nobody Likes a Tattle Tale

Mad Men S06E12: "The Quality of Mercy"


OMG I thought they killed Kenny. Show of hands, until we found out that the Dick Cheney shotgun blast to the face Mr. Cosgrove sustained in Detroit wasn't fatal, were you worried that he was a goner?


Those bastards. 

Anyway. *Clears throat.* The quality of mercy is not strained, according to Shakespeare, meaning you can't force someone to grant it. It's meant to be given freely, but not necessarily easily, as Don and the gang on Mad Men began to realize in this week's penultimate episode of Season 6. And depending on where you stand, conflicting motivations can make mercy appear to be something different altogether. Don clearly thought he was being merciful to Ted and Peggy when he telephoned the St. Joseph's people about their budget problems, and maybe a small part of Don really was trying to be the responsible businessman ensuring honest dealings with his clients—but his primary motivation for getting involved with that account was to humble Ted and Peggy. 

It's getting hard this season, honestly, to find anything new to say about Don's actions week in and week out. He destroys everything he touches—often very deliberately and often with little to no consideration for how his actions impact those around him. In retrospect, Don's fall wasn't sudden at all. He's been in a slow descent since about Season 4, and every time we've believed that Don has hit his personal rock bottom, he's proved that he could go further still. Even here, with the closing image of Don Draper in the fetal position on his sofa—knowing Don, things could potentially get much worse... especially as his roster of allies and acquaintances-who-don't-hate-him continues to shrink. 

The Don Draper in "The Quality of Mercy" was a scared Don Draper. Our first and last shots of him both focused on a large man trying to be a very small man on an even smaller piece of furniture, most tellingly, that bird's eye view of him sleeping in his daughter's unwanted bed in the opener. After the events of last week, Sally has completely rejected her dad and finally decided that neither parent is worth her time, asking Betty and Henry to ship her off to boarding school because she hates everyone—and also because she wants a good education—but mostly because she hates everyone. 


His once adoring daughter has rejected him. His ex-wife doesn't care enough about him to even bother hating him anymore. His current wife doesn't really need him. His goomah probably isn't going to call him back (we all hope). His influence at the firm is on increasingly shaky ground, and to top it all off, his former protege, his pet copywriter, the star he "discovered" way back when... is besties with the enemy. It was hard enough for Don to stomach when Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce and Cutler Gleason and Chaough were separate entities and Don merely had to know who Peggy was giving her talent to. Now it's right in front of Don all the time—and now even on his sick day, too, with a side order of office romance. So Don decided he needed to destroy it. BUT IT'S FOR THE GOOD OF THE FIRM, YOU SEE. 

And the thing is... it is. Ted wasn't thinking with his upstairs brain and Peggy is so wrapped up in her crush that she's incapable of seeing any of Ted's flaws for what they are (though to be fair, when you stand Ted and Don side by side, Ted still looks like a saint in comparison). It's not like Ted and Peggy went over budget by a few bucks—they practically ignored the budget altogether and didn't appear to even try to stick to a price the client had agreed to. Don did the right thing... but he did it for the wrong reason, because he's an ass. 


Don was a tattler this week. Those cool kids on the other side of the building didn't include him, so he tattled and got them in trouble. Then he smashed their toys—by barely trying to save the ad and then only doing so by essentially stripping Peggy of her credit. Ted responded by throwing a tantrum and hiding in his office. Peggy responded with name-calling, "You're a monster!" and Don—confused as to why no one appreciated him for "doing the right thing," curled up on the sofa for an angry, misunderstood nap. 

In contrast, the situation over at Sally's boarding school sleepover of horrors seemed strangely more mature, even though they broke like 80 house rules and Sally was basically assaulted and OMG GLEN. 

Guys, I have loved Glen Bishop for the little weirdo that he is since his first appearance on Mad Men. So did I scream like a little fangirl when he climbed through that window with booze and pot in tow? I sure did. HI GLEN! MISSED YOU!

Like so many lovable freaks in this world, our little Glen has grown up to be a bit less incapable of talking to other human beings and sadly (for Sally) he looked downright smooth compared to her. The interview process at Miss Porters apparently began with a formal interview with Betty, Sally, and some important lady, continued with Sally sitting in on some classes, and then concluded with an overnight with some real live Miss Porters students. Nobody told Sally that the third part required party favors, but it was okay because she called Glen and he delivered. He also brought his friend Rollo, who was kind of skeevy. 

Despite Sally's rejection of her father and her insistence that he never gave her anything, Sally's experience at Miss Porters implied that Don actually gave Sally several things—though unfortunately, they all kind of suck. 


I don't think that there is, or that there's meant to be, any kind of romantic connection between Sally and Glen, but I do think that Sally is very possessive of Glen, as well as the idea that he's her friend and her special somebody and when he brought the girls their goodies, he did it because Sally asked him to because he cares about Sally and not the random spoiled rich girl he ended up with behind that closed door. Sally was visibly disappointed to be left with Rollo, certainly because he was a drunk creep, but also because Glen was devoting his attention—even if it was romantic attention that Sally didn't necessarily want—to another person. What if Glen ended up liking the new girl more? What if he stopped answering Sally's calls and jumping to fulfill her every command because he found someone else to love more? It doesn't matter that there's zero chance of a Sally/Glen future, just like it doesn't matter that there's zero chance of a Peggy/Don future—whether the involved parties want one or not. 

Sally's predicament mirrored Don's in that she too did the right thing—calling for help before Rollo went too far—but with an inkling of the wrong intentions. She interrupted Glen and Whatserface, reasserting her place as the object of Glen's affections... even if those affections aren't romantic, even if she doesn't seem to want them to be romantic. It was a childish response, but unlike Don, who retreated further into a childlike state following his encounter with Peggy, Sally embraced her experience as an "adult" one. In the end, everything was fine: The kids didn't get caught, Sally was accepted by the school, and no relationships were irreparably damaged, at least as far as we can tell. 


The award for Closer to Grasping the Concept of Mercy Than Everyone Else But Still Kind of Missing the Point goes to Pete Campbell for his treatment of Bob Benson, whose unveiling as Dick Whitman Redux was an improvement over last week's underwhelming "surprise gay (maybe)" revelation, but still kind of... idk. I'm torn. I don't want to say that it takes away from Don's special snowflake status, because realistically, there's no way that he was the only person in the entire world ever who decided to bullshit his way into another life, but to have two different people fake their way into the same agency (basically), at roughly the same time, on the same series just feels kind of... repetitive? 

Whatever. We haven't seen enough for me to truly whine yet, and despite the been-there-done-that aspect of Bob's story, there's actually quite a bit that can be explored with him, like how would Don respond upon finding a man who took a very similar path as Don making himself comfortable in Don's own house? Or even Pete's predicament: Clearly, he learned something from his experience with keeping Don's secret in the past, but his approach to Bob is very, very different in comparison his attempted blackmail of Don. He actually had the upper hand this time and everyone knew it. 

Pete is still (barely) in a position of superiority over Bob. By the time Don's secret came to Pete's attention, Don was untouchable, but for as much as everyone loves Bob, Bob isn't quite at Don's level yet—and Bob knew it when Pete confronted him. He was prepared to be run out of the agency and even had to ask for clarification after Pete's rambling, bitter mess of a pardon. If Pete really wanted to get rid of Bob, he probably could have, but unlike the situation with Don, where Pete was laughed out of the office when he tried to bring Don down, it's actually beneficial for Pete to have Bob in his corner, and there's still time for Pete to exert some control over the newest stray to wander into the SC&P offices. 

I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful—and messed up—friendship. 

I'm also really pumped that Bob didn't get booted. His sinister side is showing... and it's AWESOME. 



NOTES

– This week's WTFLOL Mad Men moment: I mean, shooting Ken in face was kind of randomly hilarious once we determined that he wasn't dead, but I think I'm gonna have to go with Don going "WAH WAH WAH" like a baby just because I expected him to tell Peggy and Ted to screw off and not actually do it. 

– Megan's glee over the scandalous nature of Ted and Peggy at the movie theater: shut up, Megan. It's cute that she's all judge-y considering how she ultimately became the newest Mrs. Draper.

– Megan Draper Death Watch: So much Rosemary's Baby action. SO. MUCH. 

– Seriously, I WAS REALLY WORRIED ABOUT KENNY FOR LIKE HALF THE EPISODE, YOU GUYS.

– What do you think the point of constantly portraying the Chevy executives as a bunch of morons is? As we all know, the Vega ended up being a giant failure and almost folded the company. The '70s were rough on American car companies due to an inability to adapt to changing consumer needs, plus a crappy economy, plus stiff overseas competition—gee, that doesn't remind anyone of another super-recent time in history does it? 

– Who is Bob Benson? I don't actually think we'll go there, if only because we've already done it a hundred times with Don and in the end, it didn't really matter, so it matters even less when it comes to Bob. But still... where was Don's cherry-poppin' whorehouse located again?  

– How good is this "Mad Men in 7 Seconds" Vine post by Tim Siedell? (You may need to click the image to play the clip, and be sure to turn on the sound for the full effect!)

 


What'd you think of "The Quality of Mercy"?

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Mad Men has had its ups and downs, what with dropped story lines, and constant plot eddies which seem to regularly suck up characters, just to spit them back out again, with even more bizarre twists and nuances to their roles. I'm taking a Dramamine (no pun intended!) before tomorrow's episode. Also, expecting season 7's finale with a suicide jump from SC&P office (fade-out with opening animated credits). I've got my money on . . . you know who!
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Thanx for a great review!
In this episode we finally learn anout Bob's dark side and it's high time we did! In the end it does seems like Mad men finally got a total psycho in their midst, especially when Bob took off his "mask" and showed Pete his "real face", which was quite scary. And also his sudden fluency in Spanish worked to his image of an evil geniuos psycho, which was already mentioned on here. As I understand, he was talking to Manolo, his partner (and the former caretaker of Pete's mother). I believe that he is his romantic partner as well as a business partner, and together they came to conquer New York or smth.

To my mind, Pete decided not to tell on Bob for the reason of "keeping his friends close, but his enemies closer". And since he doesn't really have any friends, that made probaly even more sense. At least in this way he can use Bob in his attempts of powerplay in the agency.

For a moment I was a bit scared for Sally there, when those mean girls suddenly also turned their dark sides towards her. But I'm glad she got out of that situation unharmed. Actually, watching Sally and Betty throughout the season, but especially in this episode I've noticed (and I think I'm not the only one) how the relationship between those two is reversing: now that Sally is growing up, she is becoming the Adult, while Betty is still (as she has always been) the Child. In this episode it is especially evident, when Betty gets upset and threatens to turn back when Sally doesn't want to tell her the reason why she wants to go to boarding school. And then finally Sally gives a very adult reason (that she understands how important her education is) and all Betty can say is: "Oh.", realising the adult behaviour Sally shows and how childish her behavoiur looks compared to that of her daughter. And when she offers Sally a sigarette, that is childish behaviour too. Which all remind me of a book by psychiatrist Eric Berne, called "Games People Play: The Psychology of Human Relationships" which was a bestseller in 1964. In the first half of the book, Berne introduces transactional analysis as a way of interpreting social interactions. He describes three roles or ego states, known as the Parent, the Adult, and the Child, and postulates that many negative behaviors can be traced to switching or confusion of these roles. Especially when an adult person acts the role of a Child in his demands and actions, or when he or she acts like a Parent to other adult people, making them take on the roles of Children. And now that I think of it, this theory can be applied to almost anybody on the show.
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Don Draper may have been nonplussed about the marriage of Jackie Kennedy to Aristotle Onassis that Oct. of 1968 but he was clearly in the minority.
Once this well kept secret was revealed on a Friday to a dumbfounded public it unleashed a wrath a anger and disbelief. Millions were convinced Jackie had permanently tarnished the image of Camelot. Jackie had been elevated to a national treasure status and the press tracked her every move. For a look back at that October weekend and how obsessed the press was with Jackie visit http://envisioningtheamericandream.com/2013/06/21/oh-jackie-oh/
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LOL! At that clip. Thanks Tim Sidell.

Am so relieved that Kenny is (relatively) ok. Poor Guy. You're right MaryAnn. once I realised he was still alive it was pretty funny!

When all that stuff came out about Bob Benson for a moment there I thought it was going to turn a bit 'Talented Mr Ripley.' I loved how Pete handled the situation. He's really grown on me. - Kudos to Vincent for making him simultaneously likeable and loathsome. There were many things I loved about this ep, but my favourite bit has to be "Well for one thing I wanted you to stop smiling" I kinda wanted to high-five him then.

It is interesting to see how Pete and Don have handled the same situation in different ways. they are both becoming more obsolete and alienated, but I think Pete is adapting much better. Whereas Don repeats the same destructive behaviour over and over again, Pete seems to be learning from past mistakes, adapting and comprising.

Am also loving Sally's storylines and character development. Wouldn't it be awesome if she and Glen got their own spin-off show when Mad Men ends? (Please Matthew, pretty please?)
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The only thing we know is he´s name is not "Bob Benson" and he´s there for a very specific reason. Now we know he´s sexually flexible and on a mission to take over, but the question is why? What if Bob Benson is the son of the "real" Don Draper and he´s somehow playing the same game that Dick Witman´s did pulling some "The fantastic Mr. Ripley" agenda....Ninja-ing his way to the top just like Draper did? or is something else? it seems to me is a more personal quest than a professional one.

I think is a possibility ...although he seems more obssesed with Pete than Don himself but who knows. Maybe is part of a personal revenge plan or something, i feel his presence in connected with Don somehow but i can´put my finger on why. I´m also curious about Manolo...you could see how an infuriated Bob immediately called Manolo for advice about the Pete situation and he was speaking a fluent spanish so i think Manolo is crucial to understand Bob´s agenda specially because the way he pushed Pete to hire Manolo himself:

Is Manolo Bob´s actual lover? If that is the case what´s the conection between them and the agency? I would be seriously dissapointed if they don´t reveal the truth on the season finale.
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I think the idea of associating children's aspirin with Rosemary's Baby a colossally bad idea. Just dumb dumb dumb. Draper may have saved Peggy's ass with the lie it was someone else's idea . Its such a bad idea it emphasizes Ted's infatuation with her by his enthusiasm for it. and thank god for Pete Campbell. He and Roger are 2 of the last reasons to stay interested in the show, and I have seen every episode. and Betty ? The moment her and Don got divorced her reason for being on the show stopped. I do like her as a actress though. I still think about the old scene with Glen watching Betty on the toilet. That was creepy but the kid seems to have a weird intuition.
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Isn't there a parallel here between Don acting out of jealousy at Ted and Peggy and the season 5 situation where Peggy couldn't stand Don and Megan's office banter (cue: Just taste it). While she may have acted in the 'best interests' of Megan and the firm by nudging her out, it is conceivable that jealousy could have played a role. Peggy could have stayed quiet and let Megan do whatever she wanted. It is likely Megan would have left. Just as well it is likely that the Rosemary ad would have been vetoed by the client had Don stayed quiet.
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I have a lot to say about the Drapers, but like you, first I need to bring up Ken Cosgrove, as in I would appreciate if they would STOP TRYING TO KILL HIM. Partially because I never watched South Park and don't like them almost killing Kenny every week but I think Ken is importnant to Mad Men, while he may not be the heart of the show, he;s the one on the show with the biggest heart. He;s more earnest than Pete and much less sleazy than Harry (sure he was slimy in season 1, but they all were). He;s actually genuinely excited about starting a family, and was even in season 4 when Pete announced Trudy was pregnant, Ken agreed he was eager to have a baby with his then fiance now wifey future baby mama. When Pete jumped to take on Chevy and Ken asked about his family, Pete;s response was basically "Well now that we;re splitting up I no longer have to pretend I care that I have a kid". Would anybody mind if they blew off Pete;s head? Or Harry Crane;s? Cause I barely noticed the ten minutes between when he was shot and when Pete came to his office cause all I could think was "IS HE DEAD? IS KEN DEAD? WHERE IS KEN? IS HE REALLY DEAD? PLEASE DON'T LET HIM BE DEAD!!! I CAN THINK OF FIVE CHARACTERS I;D RATHER KILL OFF!"
Last week I was disgusted that all Don cared about was whether or not Sally told anyone, not the emotional ramifications of what she saw. This seems proven in this episode when Betty tells him Sally wants to go away to school and he almost literally jumps at the chance to have her out of the picture. And his attempts to subltely let Sally know it was over with the neighbor ("Tell her I;d be busy too busy working this weekend to see her (or the neighbor) and "Megan and I both miss her" (as in she still adores me) were just painful. Then there was the boarding school. Like everyone else, I rolled my eyes when the headmistress praised Betty for being a proud mother, but I did not like those boarding school girls one bit. From the minute they started snidely talking, all I could think was "LEAVE MY HOMEGIRL SALLY DRAPER ALONE, YOU BOARDING SCHOOL BITCHES." We;ve seen that Sally is usually a girl who can think for herself, but from the way her eyes darted back and forth between them, she was plain scared. She was willing to do anything to make them less nasty and it would be terrible for her to turn into one of those girls in a few years.
It was great to see Glen and that his and Sally;s friendship survived the Sally-abandoning-him-at-the-museum-when-she-got-her-period thing. I think you made an excellant point about the parallels between Peggy and Don and Sally and Glen because it;s not just that Sally was once again clearly scared by the horny college turd, she didn;t want just anyone to save her, she wanted Glen to save her. And when one of those girls commented Sally likes to stir up trouble and Sally smirked back at her, you could see it was fake cause Sally isn;t those girls.
This is where you can see the difference between good,well-written, characters richly developed shows like Mad Men and disasterbacles where the character;s personalities, pririorites, and partners change every other week like Glee. There, when Heather Morris got pregnant because she;s a grownup with a life and a steady and is still shackled to a show that should;ve been cancelled two years ago, they wrote her off in the most absurd way possible which is saying something on a show where the most absurd way possible is the motto. But on Mad Men, Sally;s desire to go somewhere else makes complete sense; she always feels at odds with her mother and the father she knew and idolized is gone and possibly never existed. However, I really don;t want to see Sally leave the show! I know after next week there;s only thirteen episodes left but that;s still thirteen episodes with no Sally Draper!
Also I thought the scene of Sally and Betty smoking in the car was interesting, a complete 180 from when Betty caught Sally smoking when she was 8 and locked her in the closet. As Don grows worse and worse, it's getting harder to hate Betty for me as it;s growing easier to hate Don, because Betty;s at least trying to understand her daughter, it seems. While sharing a smoke isn;t the same as comforting her after she got her period, Betty is in the lead for who is the least heinous parent.
And Don has now made it that the only male influence Sally has that she trusts and looks out for her is Glen Bishop. WELL DONE, DON. (I get the idea that Henry Francis adores Sally, but she holds him in same contempt as her mother).
What I want to have happen next week is for Don to at least TALK TO SALLY. I know that;s a lot to ask, but I;d like there to at least be a glimmer of hope there.
What I think will happen is that somehow Megan will find out about Sylvia and leave Don and with Megan wanthing nothing to do with him and Sally wanting nothing to do with him and him being persona non grata at the office, Don will more than ever truly be alone.
Or Megan could be killed by the Manson family. Whichever.
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I was worried about Sally leaving too but then I thought - she can go to boarding school and still be in the show. Betty didn't get written out she divorced Don. Heck we may even get to see MORE of Sally as we watch her adapt to boarding school? (I hope)
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Your insights about the parallels between Don/Peggy and Sally/Glen are the best I have read online. While I enjoyed Sally's scenes, I didn't quite understand WHY they were in this episode until reading your review. Excellent work!
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The opening scene of this episode with don spiking his OJ said what I've been thinking, we are finally seeing Don reaching full velocity in his free fall. I think his acting out towards the coworkers and his increasing inability to function the way old Don used tells us what the opening credits always alluded to, this is the story of a man destined to not have a happy ending, but rather a loud thud when he finally does hit the ground. I think they are prepping the ground for a full on Don Draper downward spiral. I've never seen Don sneak a drink before, the flask in the bag marked a shift in tone for the character from previous whiskey swilling jollyness of previous seasons. I think Bob represents if anything, the karmic replacement for Don, hence the similar story lines. Just a thought. Only a few more floors till don hits sidewalk.
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Best part of that episode was the closing credits, when I heard Micky Dolenz singing The Monkees "The Porpoise Song". (The theme from "Head") That song is so awesome. Last year "Breaking Bad" used the Monkees cover of "Going Down". This network loves it some 'Monkees' and its great they don't buy lame cover versions but rather the original Monkees' versions.

I think this show has made Don Draper kind of ridiculously awful. He's almost like a mustache twirling villian which I imagine is going to have some kind of consequence in the finale so that next season will be about rehabbing Don in every sense of the word. So Boring. The only thing to save his story and give it some life would be Megan humiliating him in public, perhaps an affair with a co-star? Loved when they showed Don watching her soap, she was a really awful actress.
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I totally first thought, "Oh my God, they killed Kenny!" So glad he's...sorta all right!

Ken's taken a beating this season, though...perhaps he and Peggy can get together and commiserate over their terrible misfortune this season.

Bob was....scary this episode...from his eerily calm "you should be careful what you say to people" to Pete, to his crazy ranting en espanol...even though we found out some stuff about him, I STILL don't really know what his purpose in the story's gonna be. I do agree, though, I hope the writers aren't trying to present him as another stolen identity story like Don's.


Is it just me, or has Betty been uncharacteristically...likable...since the episode where she slept with Don? I noticed she seemed so different in that episode...not whiny and childish. And in this episode, she seemed to actually connect with Sally.

I gotta say, I thought that last shot with Sally and Betty smoking together in the car was beautiful.


Also, for one fleeting moment, when they were at the boarding school and the woman they met with called someone named Carla to help them...get their bags, I think? Anyway, I thought it would be the Drapers' old housemaid. I miss her, she was probably the closest thing the kids had to an actual good parent.

And finally...Don's "Waah! Waah! Waah!" Seriously not expecting that. There's no way in hell that we were supposed to take that seriously.
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Ted the saint sure didn't seem like one when he forced Peggy to act on the info Stan gave her. Those two just need to go ahead and get a room.
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ted/peggy or stan/peggy?
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Ted/Peggy.
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Don is one to talk about doing stuff while thinking with your OTHER head. he was a hypocrite when he told Ted that.
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Sally Draper this week showed why she deserves more screen time. Surprised to see her still be friends with Glen. After an almost entire season of him not appearing, I assumed she had moved on from him.
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Bob Benson continues to be a great addition to the show. The minute they showed him plotting against Pete in another language, it blew my mind; he's been an evil genius this entire time. Awesome! Exactly what connections was he calling? What power can this mysterious man wield in the firm?
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He was speaking spanish. Maybe he has some connection to the The doctor he hooked Pete's Mom with.
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I guess Chevy doesn't sponsor the show?!
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I want to know what Bob Benson's real name is.
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I got the impression that Bob Benson was a former prostitute...so manservant was literal and not just clever wording?
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The fascinating and inevitiable approaching conversation between Don and Bob has to be coming...hopefully.
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First: Sally is too - I mean: TOO - young to be in that age. THAT one. At least leave me some faith, but...
Don is being Don - a person just looking out of the firm would not let Sunkist drift away, I mean: I'd set up a west coast branch, capitalism, think about it!
Ted my a**, he's to good in the sense of being 'a good man' to be in that business - let me rephrase this: to be in any business.
Kartheiser is loosing it, first of all: his hair. But if he's not booked on anything else, he's gonna be the looser he started with in Angel.

Stopping here for now.
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"Kartheiser is loosing it, first of all: his hair. But if he's not booked on anything else, he's gonna be the looser he started with in Angel." - you do know that they made him gain 25 lbs and shave an inch of his hairline off right? Also he does do movies and plays on the side

also Im pretty sure sally is 14 and shes just doing a test run thing for the boarding school so when she actually attends school she will be turning 15 that yr. (most kids who go into gr 9 are 14/15 so there is nothing wrong with her age)
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I think Sally is 15 years ald...enough to play with pot, alcohol and boys...but it´s true that she sems younger than that
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*old, seems..sorry :-)
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What if Don really didn't mean to mess anything up for Ted? It doesn't seems like Don cares about any of it.

Don e.g. sounded very surprised when Ted only asked him to back off, if he wanted his help in one of the last episodes.

But then again, he suddenly choose to ignore Teds request and call Harry back to get the new Juice-order, but first after he saw Ted and Peggy in the cinema. It was the right choice for the firm, but Don (and his alpha-male lifestyle) usually only acts for his own good.
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Oh no, he fully meant to mess up things for Ted. It was a pure Machiavellian power play. Last week he was worried Ted had figured out the real reason Don was so concerned for the neighbors' kid, but Ted revealed how little he knew - no leverage at all. This week was a move to re-consolidate the power he lost. He saw the opening at the theater and exploited it ruthlessly and in an unassailable way. Except for Peggy, who knows him too well.
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When you put it that way I guess you're absolutely right. They are almost doing the same thing as Breaking Bad: They are testing how bad the lead man can get before we go from loving to hating him.
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I feel so bad for Sally, Peggy, and Megan at this point. They are all being torn apart by the selfishness of Don. Sally might not ever have a healthy relationship. Maybe realiable Glen can save her from a sting of divorces. I especially felt bad for Megan when Don completely ignored her while watching tv.
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Don is such a douchebag.
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Great Review ! I did feel almost like Bob and Ken would be gone but they are both saved ! I am a happy man !

And totally agreed, I almost could not stop laughing when Pete walk in and talk to Ken.
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Little Sally is going to turn into Psycho Sally and be just like her mother Psycho Betty,,, I can't wait! Bob Benson, if not with the FBI, is definitely in for some corporate espionage which I thought was what Pete was talking about when he confronted him; "Work with me but not too closely." I took that as I'll work with you but don't burn me like you will everyone else. Anyways, Don, step your game up and stop making me hate you for weakness.
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"work with me but not too closely" - i thought he meant "no more touching my leg like that" and as for the work, i thought he was referring to be an ex-caretaker like Manolo as to describe why he was so serviable
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The most interesting (and eerie) it was the news about the growing murder and rape rate on late 1960´s america on tv, i think is quite foreshading what is going to happen...that subdubbed violence has been there from quite sometime now waiting to explode. Obviously something really gruesome and horrible is going to happen soon. Maybe next week? Let´s hope so.

I think Sally was great in this episode i found her more interesting than Betty herself because she´s the one who is watching the world and the society changing around her as a young person meanwhile Don is stuck in a 1950 mindset which is big part of his identity crisis.

Ted and Peggy were a little bit selfish and self absorbed in their love corner but honestly Don is the least proper person to point other people selfishness (specially because he hasnt been exactly on professional top form since 2 seasons ago). I think he wanted just destroy them for the envy of being capable of feeling love from each other ( Sylvia post-trauma syndrome) and act slighty happy. He´s an emotional stuck bitter individual: Is very ridiculous how he reacted considering the way he and the current Mrs draper acquainted: the work enviroment. Jelouse much?

Would be a very interesting development that Campbell ends morphing into a more humanistic-and-sensitive-to-others individual meanwhile the Don Draper we used to love (the one who beyond his defects used to be sympathetic and even kind at times) slow but firmly turning into the most- horrible-bitter-prick-ever. I think the last scene was very powerful: you can see Don realizing how extremely alone and every-day-more-unplesant he is...and even more: he doesnt give a damm anymore....about anyone: not his kids, not the firm, not Megan, not his health, not Peggy...not himself. He´s quite dead....undead.

I think Pete will eventually have some kind of feelings for Bob (maybe not romantically ...maybe just friendship) since he wants him on his side, he´s absolutely alone and i hink Bob really "wants to like" Pete and feels certain admiration and gratitude towards him (specially now that Pete told him he doesnt care about his origins until they are on the same side). I insist that Bob is not a bad guy...just a guy who is not exactly honest , yet i found weird Bob´s atraction for Pete, i mean... he didnt went for handsome Mr. Draper, not for funny Kenny...not for sexy and decadent Stan Rizzo. No. He fell for slimmy and rude Pete Campbell...can plz someone explain that to me?

About Ken, well he frankly ended like the comic relief of the show, from his famous tap dancing scene to this last cartoonish near death experience, i love him to bits. About Joan taking over as a proper executive i lost all hope at this point, her character is kinda stuck but who knows...maybe next season will be "Joan´s season" but i doubt so since Peggy is the biggest female character of the series and people (and writers) adore her...but don´t we all?


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Bob Benson tried to be friendly towards Don, but Don ignored him. I think Pete is the most lonely and in need of a friend, most vulnerable and open to the smiles and favours Bob had to offer. The same could be said about Joan...
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I'm probably the only sicko thinking this, but I kind of hope Glen hooks up with Betty >.>
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That would be the weirdest. But I could see Matthew Weiner substituting a Betty-look-alike older woman... what an odd thing to write for your own son though.
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I liked the episode. I think last weeks was slightly more entertaining for me but this one was still good. I think the only thing that bugged me was that it felt like one huge buildup and didn't quite have a payoff for me in the end.

I agree that Don did do the right thing when it came to the Peggy/Ted thing. And man Ted seriously has some sort of bipolar thing going on when it comes to her. This week hes touching her on the hip as he makes ad pitched (but when Peggy touched his hand while handing him a folder he flipped a couple weeks ago). And you would think Peggy would know how to keep office romances hush hush seeing that shes been with both Pete and Duck. But some ppl have said that it b/c they are both in a huge crush w/ each other to even notice that they are being obvious.

When it comes to Pete. I watched the behind the scenes vid and MW said that Pete surrendered b/c he was scared of Bob.... I don't agree with that but ok. I saw it more as a way to hold a dagger over Bobs head so that he could do all the dirty work and Pete would be un affected. (did Pete really hire Bob or is it another one of his lies?) anyways I don't understand why he apologized to Bob it makes no sense to me. It doesnt seem like a Pete thing to do, unless its all part of Petes master plan to take over the agency.

when it came to Ken I knew he would be fine (come on he lived through the car crash). I just wonder if hes going to be blind in one eye? also will the Chevy guys end up killing Pete instead? (I like Pete around for comic relief so that would suck)

I also like how Betty's now becoming the favorite parent now.
I never really liked Glen he always seemed creepy but in todays episode he wasn't that bad.
No Stan!! and no previews for the finale!! ahhh
my fav part this episode was when roger said "Lee Garner Jr made me hold his balls" followed by a short awkward silence. and also that cut to Ken just lying in that field after he got shot
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Don is a monster...and selfish...and self absorbed...and clueless...but I felt sorry for him at the end of the episode..which is testimony to Weiner's writing and Jon Hamm's acting...looking forward to the season finale next week...omg its already end of season...sigh.
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Another random thought but did anyone think that Pete and Clara would get together?
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Oooh yeah, I didn't watch the behind the scenes, but I can't see it as Pete being scared either. I took it as him jumping on an opportunity.

I think Pete DID hire Bob, but it was almost like a Don/Roger situation where Bob just kind of forced his way in and nobody thought about it until he was already there. I'll have to go back and re-watch. I wouldn't be surprised if it was just a complete lie on Bob's part though. He's revealing himself to be VERY good at doing it effortlessly. <3 Bob.

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the only diff b.w the two is that Roger was drunk and couldn't remember the night b4. I assumed Pete would be sober at work tho, right?
Whatever im starting to light Bob even tho I think he will prob end up being the "worst" person in the MM universe
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*like Bob
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I'm pretty bummed that the season is about to end just as we're finally getting a clear image of Bob Benson. Knowing that James Wolk has a new fall CBS show, I'm worried that we may only get one episode of Benson's darker side. Agreeing with MaryAnn - it's awesome.

One one hand I'd love to see what Pete is capable with a puppet at his disposal. On the other, I'd love to see Bob cleverly turn the tables. Either would be satisfying.

Great review. Excited for the finale.
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Uggggh so bummed on both counts: only 1 episode left and James Wolk possibly not having as much Mad Men time (though confetti and congrats to him for getting his own show!)

I'm so excited about Bob and Pete's team-up. It has the potential to be so amazing. I kind of see Bob eventually getting one over on Pete though. Sorry, Pete! <3
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It's never kept Alison Brie from appearing, although she's not on every episode of course.

I just want Bob Benson to continue to be revealed as more and more sinister. Hopefully he'll stay on the show next year.
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Bob Benson speaking angry spanish was the WTFLOL moment of the episode. Enjoyed this ep much more than last weeks. Megan is getting awfully close to Lori Grimes territory.
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"Lee Garner Jr made me hold his balls" - Roger Sterling

It's not even so much that line that made me laugh about as hard as anything on TV ever has. It was right after, as Ken continues talking, and Roger turns, and Burt Cooper is staring at him, and he just gives a nod. I died. I had to pause for a good three minutes. I love Roger Sterling.

Other than that, good episode.
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