Mad Men

Season 1 Episode 4

New Amsterdam

Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Aug 09, 2007 on AMC
out of 10
User Rating
248 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Don teaches Pete a lesson when he oversteps his authority in dealing with a valuable client. At home, Pete's new bride pressures him to buy their own apartment unit.

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  • Pete makes a move and Betty has a strange experience at Helen Bishop's house

    This episode had much less of a focus on Don Draper and brought us into the world of Pete Campbell and Betty Draper. I was surprised there was so little of Draper, but this shows the true strength of the cast. The episode also proved that Draper isn't as all-powerful as one would expect. He was given credit for two things that he didn't actually do, something that's worth noting.

    I'm not 100% sure of the actor's name but the guy who plays Pete did a great job today. Sure, he's a tough guy at work and he seems to be confident, but it's clear that his wife gets whatever she wants and that Pete doesn't have all the marital power that he wants. Watching him get shoved aside by his parents and by his wife's parents AND by his wife makes it hard to feel great about him almost getting fired. The writers have done a good job of making us actually feel sympathy towards him. He clearly wants to be an important man and his attempts to go over Don's head with the steel company was a daring move. But once again, in the end, we see Don Draper's power get the best of him.

    There was also a somewhat strange series of scenes where Betty babysits Glen, Helen Bishop's son, and he seems to pine after her in a way that a young kid shouldn't. I wonder if they'll do anything with this or just let it sit. But for the most part, it was nice to see more of January Jones.

    The show seems to be hitting its stride more. The characters are being fleshed out more and showing more emotion.. instead of getting straightforward stereotypes of 60's men and women, we're seeing some characters stray from their comfort zones, something that will make the show better and more enjoyable.moreless
  • It's not what you know, but who you know.

    As a period piece the show is near perfect, and it's a pretty good story too. In this episode we realize that not everything is what it appears to be.

    In this episode Don is challenged by the upstart Pete. While Don wields his power in firing Pete, the owner of the firm says no, it's different. We need Campbell for his name, it grants us access....and then he lists the country clubs and captains of industry. Consequently Campbell is retained while Don's boss makes it seem that it was Don who went to the mat for him. It's the devil having to eat crow.

    Meanwhile Pete has to eat crow when he's emasculated by his wife when she asks her father for help in aquiring new Park Avenue apartment. We also see a little into Betty and how she looks at Mrs. Bishop, the divorcee. Of course she gets nosy while babysitting Helen's very odd son. In a side note, I like the way AMC gives little factoids revolving around the following commercial. I'm sure that was a great selling point when courting advertisers for this show.moreless
  • In doubt

    Not really sure what to think of this episode. I've only just started watching this series and am still deciding whether to really like it, or just watch it because of the hype. This particular episode felt a little out of place in comparison to the first three. Good or bad? I don't know. It's great to see the characters of Don and Peter developing, but that makes it harder to sympathize with them. Don started out as the good guy (if you can be whilst cheating on your wife and abandoning her at the kids party) and Peter the obnoxious guy who was a little too eager to get ahead. More and more I start to dislike Don and feel sorry for Peter, because he is struggling with so many things in his marriage and work. But that's the problem, it's hard to feel sorry for him, because he was so annoying. That's why I categorize this episode as 'out of character'.moreless
  • Another great contribution to the intruiging universe of Mad Men.

    I loved the fact that this episode revolved around two of the most interesting character "conflicts" on this show: That of Don/Pete and Betty/Helen. I think on the one hand the show-off between Don and Pete was necessary and I'm very interested to watch things develop. It was a hilarious moment when Roger pretended that Don was "the only reason Pete was allowed to stay in the company." Nice.

    Betty and Helen's relationship is still very tense at the moment but it seems that babysitting Helen's kid is making Betty think about her marital position and the strength of women in general. In a way she tries to deny this, as evidenced in her chat with the psychiatrist (who remains creepily silent!) but things are definitely changing. I can't help but think that Don and Betty are, though they definitely remain products of their time, the most emancipated people of the bunch who are trying to break free from the time spirit in their own ways. Or am I reading too much into things?

    All in all, this episode is a nice addition to the already impressive list of Mad Men greatness.moreless
  • The first big clash between Draper and Pete.

    Great episode! I really enjoyed seeing another side of Pete. I couldn't stand before and now I kinda like him.

    It's a good thing that every character on this show isn't completely likeable or unlikeable. It makes things so much more interesting.

    I was laughing out loud during the scene where Roger tells Pete he is not fired. Great acting and great writing all around.

    Those characters have such great dynamics. And this is juste the 4th episode.

    Glen freaked me out too. Sure Betty is pretty, very pretty, but that didn't seem to be a simple childish crush. I'm not sure where they're going with the whole Betty/Hellen storyline and I'm not sure I like it either. I guess we'll see soon enough...

    The only thing I didn't like about this episode was that there was no Midge or Joan.

Christopher Allport

Christopher Allport

Andrew Campbell

Guest Star

Randy Ogelsby

Randy Ogelsby

Walter Veith

Guest Star

Barbara Kerr Condon

Barbara Kerr Condon

Mrs. Clifford Lyman

Guest Star

John Slattery

John Slattery

Roger Sterling

Recurring Role

Alison Brie

Alison Brie

Trudy Campbell

Recurring Role

Robert Morse

Robert Morse

Bertram Cooper

Recurring Role

Featured Episode Clip

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Glen Bishop (Marten Holden Weiner), the 9-year-old son of Helen Bishop (Darby Stanchfield), who asked Betty Draper (January Jones) for a lock of her hair, is the son of the show's creator and executive producer, Matthew Weiner.

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Roger Sterling: I bet there were people in the Bible walking around, complaining about "kids today."
      Don Draper: Kids today, they have no one to look up to. Cuz they're looking up to us.

    • Roger Sterling: What you did is totally unacceptable.
      Pete Campbell: I realize that.
      Roger Sterling: I want you to be very clear about this: You were fired. I wanted you out. Cooper wanted you out. And you would be...if it weren't for this man. (motions to Don) He thought you deserved another chance. That's right. He fought for you.
      Pete Campbell: I don't know what to say.
      Roger Sterling: Say nothing. You are here because of Don Draper's largess.
      Pete Campbell: Thank you. Thank you so much.
      Roger Sterling: Now, I know that your generation went to college instead of serving, so I'll illuminate you. This man is your commanding officer. You live and die in his shadow. Understood?
      Pete Campbell: (nods vigorously) I won't let you down, Don.
      Roger Sterling: Jesus! Campbell...don't ever say that.

    • Roger Sterling: I bet daily friendship with that bottle attracts more people to advertising than any salary you can dream of.
      Don Draper: It's the way I got in.
      Roger Sterling: So enjoy it.
      Don Draper: I'm doin' my best here.
      Roger Sterling: No, you're not. You don't know how to drink. Your whole generation, you drink for the wrong reasons. My generation, we drink because it's good, because it feels better than unbuttoning your collar, because we deserve it. We drink because it's what men do.
      Don Draper: What about shaky hands, I see a lot of that with you boys?
      Roger Sterling: No joke. Your kind with your gloomy thoughts and your worries, your all busy licking some imaginary wound.
      Don Draper: Not all imaginary.
      Roger Sterling: Yeah, boo hoo.
      Don Draper: Maybe I'm not as comfortable being powerless as you are.

    • Pete Campbell: I have ideas.
      Don Draper: I'm sure you do. Sterling Cooper has more failed artists and intellectuals than the Third Reich.

  • NOTES (1)