Mad Men

Season 4 Episode 7

The Suitcase

8
Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Sep 05, 2010 on AMC
AIRED:
9.5
out of 10
User Rating
372 votes
9

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

A deadline on the Samsonite account disrupts Don and Peggy's plans on the night of the Ali-Liston fight.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • The Don and Peggy Hour

    8.0
    In a season marked by the slow but steady disintegration of Don Draper, both the man and the legend, it's hard to know if this is the moment that Don hits rock bottom, or if this is just the moment that he gains a key ally before the leadership crisis hits the agency in full force. Regardless, this seemingly sparse episode, focusing almost entirely on Don and Peggy, demonstrates why "Mad Men" is at the top of its game.



    After Don's mistakes in the previous episode, he and Peggy were going to have it out sooner or later. I just didn't think it would happen so quickly. Longtime fans remember that Don was the one who took Peggy under his wing and, from a certain point of view, saved her from her own mistakes and errors in judgment. As terrible as he is at it, Don's still trying to watch out for Peggy and help her grow, and no matter the opportunities that may arise, Peggy chooses to stand by him.



    This is critical, because Don's latest collapse further into the abyss is prompted by the death of Anna Draper. Anna was the one person who really knew Don's true self. Dick Whitman all but died in this episode, right alongside Anna. But Peggy, out of everyone in Don's world, has seen the man behind the legend. The conversation in the bar gave her another good look at everything that Don usually tries to deny. And that opens the door for Peggy to be just what Don needs: an anchor.



    And an anchor will almost certainly be needed. That tape of Roger's memoir was not included as a throwaway comedic moment. It was designed to underscore how Roger and Bert are being perceived, and also points to the potential for Don to break away from them, even if he appears to be on the same path.



    This is likely why the writers have been emphasizing that Peggy has no romantic designs on Don (and in fact resents the assumptions of such), and have the two of them gush over the rewards of the creative process. Peggy and Don resonate at their creative cores, and that's the part of Don that holds the most potential for rebirth. If anyone is going to help Don survive when the Coopers are eventually confronted (and I strongly believe that will come at the end of the season), it would be Peggy.



    The end of the episode suggests that Peggy's presence during this long night of the soul was a turning point. That open door could represent a reversal: instead of shutting out the world, Don is willing to engage again. If Don must abandon his notions of keeping Dick Whitman and Don Draper separate, then having Peggy as a touchstone is pitch perfect. And even better, that deep friendship has been waiting in the shadows since the very beginning.moreless
  • Just Amazing!

    9.0
    What a great episode!!! I'm not sure I can say this was the best episode of the series so far, because it wasn't focuse that much on the show itself, but it was definitely a break in the characters Don and Peggy. Now we know so many things about them, their hidden and secret personalities came out, and from now on the only thing we can expect is that everything is going to get better. Maybe slowly, but the difficult moments we have seen lately I think ended with the Don and Peggy scenes of this episode. Scenes that brought to maybe one of the best tv moment I've ever watched, a well definied climax, excellent played, that leads to a good, even if sad, ending. Nothing was out of place, and even if this wasn't the usual Mad Men episode, we were still able to follow the storyline. Storyline that is now even more interesting, and Mad Men keeps growing no stop as one of the best tv show ever.moreless
  • The Suitcase delves deeper into Don Draper's and Peggy Olson's remarkable relationship, where they connect on a higher level and surpass their professional brick wall.

    10
    This is one of the best episodes ever produced on Mad Men. The exploration of the depth of the relationship between Peggy and Don was so astoundingly written and beautifully put into dialogue.

    The build up of the tension between Peggy and Don through the last two episodes that helped in creating a great blow out between the two characters in Don's Office, was a wonderfully and maticulously-arranged climactic scene. It is rare to see such a truely profound moment so well written and acted on TV these days. This episode was especially perfect for Peggy to shine even more. The more they reveal about her personal life the more it tells us about her true character and why she is the way she is, A strong and a potentially powerful woman in times of high patriarchy.

    The other part that makes this episode a classic gem is Don's reaction to the death of his most precious friend in the world. Jon Hamm is an amazing actor, and he will surely win a Golden globe for this performance alone. Every Episode I always think they are going to fall into a cliche, but they always manage to turn the story into the most unlikely direction.moreless
  • Excellent episode

    10
    On Sunday night, I decided to catch up on the episodes that I had recorded and managed to get through all but one of them. This was the last one that I watched before recording the newest episode and I was blown away by the episode.



    While I want to go on and describe the premise of the episode, many other people have described the episode so more eloquently described it. But I will pick on a few moments that were key to the plot of the story. The first moment that I felt was key was when Trudy Campbell came into the ladies room, while Peggy was getting ready for her "romantic" birthday dinner with her boyfriend, Mark. The reason that I felt it was important was due to the fact that one can see that Trudy is very pregnant, while when Peggy was pregnant, nobody even knew that she was pregnant. Also the fact that Trudy seems to rub in the fact that Peggy is 26 and still not married, almost making Peggy as though she is somehow inferior for not being married and still single. There is also the fact that Peggy gave birth to Pete's child and that Trudy still doesn't know that Pete got Peggy pregnant (I can't imagine how Trudy would react to that news; actually I can, but I digress), which was made reference to later in her conversation with Don at the bar. The encounter with Trudy almost highlights what Peggy's mom feels about the fact that Peggy is still single and is making a career of her own and as though that somehow Peggy's decision to concentrate on her career rather than concentrating on having a family.



    The second moment that I felt was key was after Don had received the formal news that Anna had passed away. Not only does it show the cracks that are starting to appear in Don's amour, but also signifies the death of Don's lie and how it goes to the grave with the only other person that knew the real Don Draper, so to speak. Overall, an excellent episode and truly one of the best hours of TV that I haven't seen in a long time.moreless
  • The Prize Fight

    10
    For a mid-season episode Mad Men sure knows how to deliver. On the night of the Muhammad Ali and Liston title fight Don and Peggy put their heads together to get ideas on a campaign for Samsonite (luggage) and it causes very personal repercussions for Peggy as she delves deeper into being more like Don. Her relationship with Mark (boyfriend) is put to the test on the phone and they have a falling out. The fact that Don now constantly singles out Peggy to make her feel bad is just bullying when before he was a chronic drunk he spoke harsh words to her but it was more of Don knew that Peggy was capable of greater things and is more like him than anyone else so he expects more now it's just being a jerk. The chemistry is excellently pulled off by Jon Hamm and Elizabeth Moss and the working relationship is stressed and forced to work for a common goal. By far the best of the season thus far, and hopefully more to come.moreless
Melinda Page Hamilton

Melinda Page Hamilton

Anna Draper

Guest Star

Blake Bashoff

Blake Bashoff

Mark Kearney

Guest Star

Jerry D. O'Donnell

Jerry D. O'Donnell

Gerry Respola

Guest Star

Matthew Long

Matthew Long

Joey Baird

Recurring Role

Jay R. Ferguson

Jay R. Ferguson

Stan Rizzo

Recurring Role

Danny Strong

Danny Strong

Danny Siegel

Recurring Role

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