Mad Men

Season 4 Episode 12

Blowing Smoke

Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Oct 10, 2010 on AMC

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

Write A Review
out of 10
157 votes
  • The theme of the episode is Midge's painting, afterimage, or the fact that we cannot get past what we see

    The painting from Midge is titled "Afterimage" and that sums up this episode, as the episode examines what we saw before, how that can change, and whether our afterimage of an event forever prejudices us from re-evaluating someone. In otherwords, do you really have one chance to make a first impression?

    Sally has a storyline with Glen from previous seasons, and they have a "divorced kid" bond going on. He gives her advice and she hangs out with him. However, Betty has an afterimage of Glen as the creepy kid who liked her and caused her all kinds of problems in the neighborhood. She catches Glen with her daughter and she is so scandalized she finally wants to move out of the house.

    Midge also returns as Don's former mistress, and he has an afterimage of her as a bohemian artist and had good feeling about her, even though her ended the affair. His afterimage is shattered though, as he learns she is on heroin and is married to a loser who offers to whore her out. He takes pity on her and gives her some money for a painting, and her painting leads him to a business decision.

    Speaking of which, everyone has an image that SCDP is dying, which is true. The running joke is all new business they try to get say "six months". Everyone knows Lucky Strike was there business and they reek of desperation.

    After Don runs into Midge and sees how he is repulsed by her desperation, he throws a bomb with a full page ad in the Times saying they are through with tobacco. This so upsets Bert he quits, as the ad is basically crapping on his entire reputation.

    However, this sets up the final as Don lets it be known they are ot desparate and the partners put their own funds into the company to keep it afloat. They are looking for a wholesome company to save them. Finally, Don repays Pete for his falling on his sword over the aviation account earlier, by paying his partner dues. What does the final hold?
  • 412

    Man, can they stop giving Sally actual storylines? The actress portraying her is terrible, the direction of the character is terrible, there really is no need to have this. Mad Men appeals to upscale viewers, and I do not see why people of that demographic want to see this.

    The Matchstick Men-esque con of Don was an interesting change of pace, but the scenes at the agency definitely made the episode. From the firings, to the arguments, this was a strong installment in that regard. The business aspect of the show was definitely legitimate, I know that I marked out when I heard "line of credit."

    Decent episode, but this show is capable of so much more. Hopefully the season finale gives us that.
  • SCDP downsizes

    In a world where 40 year old quarterbacks send pictures of their weener to sideline reporters, I think it is fair to expect a lackluster penultimate episode of a show that is usually high on drama.

    I see this episode as a mix of two parts. Part one is the unnecessary part - the part involving Midge's entry out of nowhere and Sally experiencing the onset of teenage rebellion. Part 2 is the usual corporate drama, or the part that actually complements the plot lines we've seen thus far in this season. SCDP is shown some hope of business only to have it taken away a day later.

    I am not sure what the writers are planning for the finale. I would hate cliches like SCDP getting a ton of business because of Don's rant on pretty much every object of print media. Well, one more to go.