Peggy Olson All Wrapped Up

 Posted by on September 9, 2014 at 9:55 am  Characters, Mad Men, Season 5, Season 6
Sep 092014
 

[Here’s another reprint of a lost article. It garnered lively discussion last spring.]

When Peggy Olson wants to dress up, she wraps herself up in a bow. Well, not “dress up” exactly. I think it’s specifically when she wants to please a man, or be sexy or beautiful. She doesn’t wear bows to church or for “Ma.” She likes a pussy bow at the collar for work, and she learned in Season 1 that “men like scarves.” The dressy bow, though, is particular.

In Mad Men Episode 5.07: At the Codfish Ball, Peggy thinks Abe is going to propose, and, at Joan’s prompting, goes shopping.

Mad Men, At the Codfish Ball, Peggy in Pink

Image: AMC TV

It’s almost a joke: Here I am in my pretty pink package. Open me! Peggy behaves, before Abe drops his “living together” bombshell, in broad strokes of girlishness. And there’s that bow, right smack in the middle of her: Open me! Open me!

Mad Men: The Flood, Peggy at the Awards dinner

Image: AMC TV

A year and a half later, Episode 6.05: The Flood. Peggy is at an award dinner. She’s with Abe, but well into the flirtatious crush portion of her relationship with Ted–at one point she’s literally between them. In addition, she’s up for an award. Once again, she’s wrapped up with a bow at the middle. You could get metaphorical and say she’s divided—between Ted and Abe, and between the top pink half and the bottom green half. But the girly pink is there, as is the bow. Open me!

Finally, there’s Mad Men Episode 6.13: In Care Of. The scenario here is that Ted has declared his love for Peggy, but then insisted they can’t act on it. His wife and kids have just visited the office, making Peggy uncomfortable and jealous. Now she’s going to get ready to go out on a date straight from work, and make sure Ted sees exactly how delicious she looks.

With a pink bow, right at her middle.
in-care-of-peggy-black-dress

Open me!

FacebookGoogle+RedditShare

  3 Responses to “Peggy Olson All Wrapped Up”

  1. It’s almost a joke: Here I am in my pretty pink package. Open me! Peggy behaves, before Abe drops his “living together” bombshell, in broad strokes of girlishness. And there’s that bow, right smack in the middle of her: Open me! Open me!

    Definitely interesting to observe. She really looks quite unlike herself there. It’s more like she’s saying, “This is the me I know I probably should be.”

    The “make Ted jealous” outfit reminds me a bit of Peggy standing in front of her mirror brushing her hair and singing Bye, Bye Birdie. It seems like she’s saying, “Well, I think this is supposed to be sexy? I’ll try it.”

    • I think she’s become more naturally sexy over the years, but she’s not good at it. These dresses aren’t chic. They’re slightly awkward clothes for a slightly awkward woman.

      • Actually I don’t think that Peggy is any better at attracting the opposite sex than she was in Season one but that’s part of her character. Joan’s mother “raised [her] to be admired”. Everything about Joan, the way she walks, talks and dresses, is to appeal to men. In contrast, I’m guessing that the only guidance that Peggy ever got from her mother was along the lines of “Sex is bad” and “Men don’t marry loose women”. It’s no wonder that she doesn’t have a clue, really.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.