I had planned to post about the plethora of numbers which were thrown into “Blowing Smoke.” But as that’s already been discussed in the comments for Deb’s post from yesterday, I decided to change directions a bit. The result is this collection of eclectic observations.
Facts and Figures
I have to start by noting that the impending six month doomsday deadline facing SCDP as a result of losing Lucky Strike (and all the talk about numbers) reminded me of a discussion in one of my favorite movies: Dr. Strangelove (1964). When told that Russian anti-aircraft missiles have damaged their B-52 and resulted in a fuel leak which will not allow them to complete the mission, Major Kong explodes at his ever calm navigator (who never once flinches when dealing with the enraged officer) in this memorable exchange:
Kong: Dog gonnit, Sweets, you told me that you’d get me to the primary!
Navigator: I’m sorry, Sir. That estimate was based on the original loss rate factor, not at two zero five.
Kong: I don’t give a hoot in hell how you do it, you just get me to the primary, you hear?
Navigator: I’m sorry Sir, but those are the figures. We’ll be luck to reach weather ship at tango delta.
It’s interesting to note that SCDP’s six month deadline was the same time-frame given to Freddy Rumsen in “Six Months Leave.”
Also, Sally hates the number 7. That number comes up (sort of) two other times. The opening scene has Don failing to court a Heinz executive. Heinz famously touted it’s “57 Varieties” of product. The executive in the scene happens to be complaining about about those other varieties.
Finally, Don chastises Midge for acting “like James Bond” in tracking him down. Bond’s number was “007.”
I couldn’t help but connect Betty’s taking a hot dog out of a pot of boiling water (in lieu of hog fat) just seconds after the Heinz executive has made a less than tasteful reference to Don’s mother in the previous scene.
The Bad Boy
Was I the only one who thought that Glen’s demeanor while courting Sally came off a little like George Costanza in a Seinfeld episode where he attempts to impress a blond employee of Elaine’s by being the “bad boy?”
Roger Sterling’s unfortunate metaphor comparing SCDP’s situation to that of a cancer patient with a spot on their lung helped me to finally figure out the meaning of the picture in his office. It’s been prominently shown in just about every episode (especially during moments of duress) and made Freddy a little disoriented when it was first introduced.
IT’S AN X-RAY OF SCDP! (tongue kinda in cheek)