Apr 202015
Courtesy of AMC

Courtesy of AMC

About two-thirds of the way through Mad Men episode 7.10, The Forecast, Mathis delivers the quote of the week, thrown spitefully at Don: You don’t have any character, you’re just handsome, stop kidding yourself. Later, Sally throws spite at both her parents for being attractive, for loving attention, and for playing off their looks.

In the end, though, Don proves he’s much more than a pretty face. Don’s realtor, Melody Melanie, is unable to sell his apartment. She says she’s using everything she can, and significantly, in the moment she says it, she gestures at her own body. Don has her describe her best prospect, and he gives her a fantasy she can spin for them, a ridiculous confection involving Frisbees and castles. Then he explains why the story will work. When we next see Melanie, the story has indeed worked, she’s shocked to say that she has signed this couple.

Don wants a future. He wants meaning. He wants to be more than a pretty face, and throughout the episode he seems to be pretty sure he isn’t. Ironically, though, Don is incredibly competent in virtually every scene. He does a good job breaking up the fight between Pete and Peggy. He gives Mathis good advice, although Mathis bungles it. He is avuncular and warm with Sally’s friends.

Don’s work is abstract these days. We are seeing the office function mostly in the background. Don hears about meetings he doesn’t attend, hears about work he didn’t create. “Do you ever feel like there’s less to actually do but more to think about?” he asks Ted. Ted is more hands-on, more involved with the day-to-day work. We’re seeing this from Don’s perspective, though, and he certainly seems to be floating above the office’s functioning, thinking about the future, the forecast, the problems he must solve, without actually being there.

With Peggy, Don does what he almost always does—use her to his own ends. She wants a performance review, he uses her as one more test subject for his analysis of the future. Because the analysis has to be “what’s next?” The future, for Don, has to be more.

Don Draper: If I leave this place one day, it will not be for more advertising.
Roger Sterling: What else is there?
Don: I don’t know, life being lived? I’d like to stop talking about it and get back to it.


In Season 1, Don saw a future that wasn’t about advertising. And yet…and yet when Roger asked what else is there, Don opened with “I don’t know.” He didn’t know in 1960, and he doesn’t know in 1970. What else is there?

He asks Meredith to find the press release from the founding of SCDP to help him create the forecast, because that was a time when he was captivated by a vision. But now? Every vision is just a stepping stone to the moment you realize that there has to be a what’s next.

In Season 5 he said “What is happiness? It’s a moment before you need more happiness.”  As Don has gotten older, he’s seen those moments accumulate, and each of those moment is just a little bit empty. So he keeps asking Peggy, “And then?” Not to torment her, but because he doesn’t know.

Is Don really running from the emptiness of the future, or from the past? In the office candy machine, Don sees a Hershey bar. It’s a reminder of the past, both of his boyhood, and of his failures at SC&P. I couldn’t see what he selected, but it wasn’t the Hershey bar. At the end of the episode, Don has finally freed himself from the past represented by his apartment, and he’s suddenly grief-stricken. He suddenly has an unknown future, and it freezes him to the spot. “It’s supposed to get better,” he says, but it hasn’t.

Joan is trapped by a different past, in the form of a four year-old boy. She loves Kevin, and she loves her life, but she can’t be the kind of free spirit Richard (a very orange Bruce Greenwood) asks her to be. Her life as she has lived it ties her down, the decisions she has made are decisions she must live with daily. It is not a coincidence that this is almost word-for-word what Don told Mathis, nor that after Mathis spit out at Don that he shouldn’t apologize, the very next moment brings Richard apologizing to Joan.

This is the real future, after all; living with the consequences of your decisions. Most futures are a lot like Glen’s—you make a mistake, or a rash decision, or find a quick solution, and that changes your life, and there you are.

There’s definitely a sense in this half-season that story lines are being resolved. Bring back Glen. Give Joan a romance.

I was amused by Betty’s reunion with Glen; not recognizing him, then transfixed, then flirting. Unfortunately, when he returned for a second visit with Betty, it didn’t come off well. Marten Weiner isn’t a skilled or experienced enough actor to pull off the complex mix of bravado, desperation, passion, self-importance, and immaturity needed in the scene where he grabs Betty for a kiss. Instead, it was just stiff and awkward. I wondered for a moment if it wasn’t a daydream of Betty’s, since it seemed so unreal. Still, the scene served as an answer to Don: What’s the future? It’s the thing you fuck up, and then you spin a fantasy about how it’s going to be great, and turn that into your future. That didn’t last long for Glen, so I hope he comes home okay.

Some additional points, courtesy of bullets;

  • Wow, if Peggy continues to see Stevie, that’s really going to be awkward.
  • It doesn’t make sense to me that Joan, who spends so lavishly at Bonwits, Henri Bendel, and Lord & Taylor, is still living on 12th Street, nor that she uses a babysitter instead of a real nanny.
  • I spent time in the Port Authority bus terminal in 1970—that’s exactly how it looked.
  • The minute Melanie walked in, I thought “real estate agent.” It’s kind of amazing how they all look alike.
  • Bert Cooper’s painting, the Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife, is visible in Roger’s office
  • Kevin Harris is watching Sesame Street, a brand-new show that premiered November 10, 1969. Kevin and Roberta are the same age.

  258 Responses to “Mad Men Recap: The Forecast–It’s supposed to get better”

  1. From a non NYC person, what does living on 12 th imply?

    • Not sure. I didn’t think of it, but maybe something to do with the whole missing 13th floor in buildings, mzybe?

    • Greenwich Village.

      • Is that a place where a real estate developer would not want to live ?

        • Not in the late 1960s/early 1970s. It was not a great area.

          • I knew someone, much more well-to-do than I, who had a place in the Village in just about exactly 1970. I thought that was incredibly glamorous. But he wasn’t a wealthy older developer.

            • There are beautiful town homes in the West Village and my aunt lives in a magnificent trio of buildings that are all duplexes on 9th street. Still, I agree that with Joan’s new found wealth, she would have packed in the Village and moved to the Upper East Side, which is more glamorous and befitting of now more expensive taste.

            • It was an OK area depending on how far west you lived in those days. You had the area around St. Vincent’s Hospital and The New School which was 11th and 12th Streets by 6th-7th Avenues, pockets of the middle-class and affluent which all stayed OK even in the darkest days of Beame and Dinkins. The closer you got to 5th Avenue the better and pricier it was. Also you had good stores, but you wanted to avoid 14th Street. Joan probably found an apartment in a pre-war, stable building that was convenient and well-priced for her and of course it was perfectly logical that her sitter would be going to NYU. (FYI I’ve lived my entire life in the area, and my brother did his medical residency at the now-only-a-memory St. V’s)

              Anyone notice that her furnishings have become far more elaborate, even with a 4 year old?

    • She’s in Greenwich Village, not in a trendy part of the Village, and not a great neighborhood in 1970. There are beautiful brownstones on 12th Street, but if she lives in one, it’s been carved up into apartments. Her real estate investor boyfriend isn’t interested in investing there.

      But Joan could have more room, fancier views, a chic neighborhood. She has the money.

    • Do we know for sure that is really her address? For some reason I previously thought she lived in mid-town/lower-Upper East Side (near the hospital, for her husband). I thought she also told Richard she had been married twice and I only remember the once–my theory was that she was angry and just trying to make herself sound as undesirable as possible at that point out of spite.

      • When her friend from Avon comes to stay for an evening, they talk about her first marriage. I believe the comment was “You always had to be the first to do everything.”

        • Thanks Elizabeth, I had the same doubt as Lorina since I didn’t remember Joan was married twice.

          I don’t know, Mad Men romances seem always a bit “off” (Peggy and Stevie, Joan and Richard, Pete and… Alexis Bledel -what was the character’s name??, Don and pretty much every woman…): we see these characters exchange a couple of lines and the next scene zap!, they’re in bed or making out… I don’t know how I am supposed to warm up to these pairings (and I don’t know if the writers care about that at all)

      • She has had that apartment since Season 1 (although the set seems to have since been altered to include a kitchen), before she was even dating Greg Harris.

    • I think her staying in the apartment speaks to her belief, deep down, that what she has now is not permanent. The apartment represents stability. As someone who has gotten where she is through a combination of her competence and her looks, she has to know that the “looks” part of that equation are fleeting. If I were Joan, I’d be paying the lowest rent I could get away with and sock away as much cash as possible for the inevitable decline.

  2. I thought it was good for Don to acknowledge Sally as an individual and take her anger at him and remind her she is just like her mother and father, I the bus terminal. Don flirting with Sally ‘s friend at dinner wasn’t the same as Betty and Glenn, as Sally took it, but she has seen a lot of adult letdown from both of her parents. She doesn’t understand them as people who make mistakes…but then, in those days your parents weren’t supposed to be human, they were your parents.

    • I enjoyed that scene as well. Instead of Don being hurt and turning away, he stood his ground with Sally as if to say…blame us all you want but you ARE us. It’s up to YOU to be better. And I LOVED that he said that Sally was pretty but so much more.

      • I’m sorry but that blotto face Sally had at the table was incredibly……..just spot on.
        Kiernan Shipka, is a real talent.
        Invest in that stock.

    • Sally was furious at her mother flirting with Glen, and so was more sensitive to seeing it. Don was not flirting with Sarah IMO.

  3. Wasn’t it explained that after Joan married Greg Harris they lived in an apartment close to Columbia Medical School.

    Where it gets confusing was to save money they reused many elements from Joan’s old place. Later MW stated that Joan always like certain colors.

  4. “Wow, if Peggy continues to see Stevie, that’s really going to be awkward.”

    Wait, I missed this. What’s going to be awkward? Could someone please explain?

  5. I really hope that wasn’t the last time we see Sally.
    Glen telling Sally and Betty that he enlisted broke my heart! Because we know what he will die in Vietnam and what he will face if and when he returns stateside. The country is still lacking in treating veterans properly.

    • Even if he doesn’t die, there are the physical injuries and disability.

      As well, I was listening to NPR a while ago and several vets from Viet Nam, the very vets who helped the study of and identification of Post a Traumatic Stress Disorder, are *still* fighting to have their dishonorable discharges revoked! dishonorable discharges which were the direct result of their trauma.

      It’s super sad.

  6. What he will see, hopefully not die.

  7. I’m a little older. I turned five in April. And I tweeted that date–I remember the premier. Everyone had been prepping me for this exciting new show I’d love. We were at Nana’s; I watched in the bedroom.
    Ohh–do I have a big birthday coming up this month? I DO!
    Brilliant write-up, Deb. Killer.

    • I was a Sesame Street baby too! I remember everyone in being excited when I was in kindergarten…and since I went to school in L.A. we went on field trips to PBS Sunset Studio every year!

    • I remember because the show was perfect for you; it was designed for 4 and 5 year-olds, pre-readers. I was 9 and frustrated that I had to watch the baby show.

      • I was 9 then as well, and annoyed that it wasn’t around earlier. But I watched it while “watching” younger kids. It was a great excuse for secretly reveling in muppet love.

        • I was seven and felt much too old for it – but watched it with my little brother and secretly loved it.

    • I was born in ’65 and somehow my mom, who had NO media savvy (then or now) and disapproved of our watching too much TV, got wind of Sesame Street and made a point of plunking me down for the premiere, which I still kind of remember. Oscar the Grouch, living in a trash can? LOVED.

  8. I thought Joan said she was divorced twice. I only knew about Greg; or was she just trying to top Richard?

    • She alluded to a very brief earlier marriage in “To Have and to Hold” (when her friend Kate visited).

      It makes some of the snide gossiping that she has done about Don seem hypocritical.

    • Joan’s earlier, brief marriage was referred to by her hometown friend, who worked for Mary Kay. She visited Joan in NYC, while there for an interview with Avon.

    • speaking of joan…that nightware she had on in the scene where she’s ordering breakfast and on phone with mother…i immediately thought, “oh my gosh! she looks like endora!!!”

    • So Holloway may be the name of her first husband, and not her family name? Is “P” the initial for her middle name or maiden name? (Joan P. Holloway was on her driver’s license)

  9. So we saw Lou, but still no Cutler. I wonder if he was given the golden parachute from Don and Roger.

    • Here is an unexplained appearance/plot device.

      WTF LOU?

      Lou was a temp at SC. He was brought in by Duck and Cutler to run Creative to replace Don at SC. He is not a McCann man and he should be persona non grata at SC.
      So what is he doing at in an Accounts position at SC’s California office? Somebody please explain.
      Thank you.

      • Lou had a two-year contract and demanded SC&P adhere to it. They gave him an executive job and got him out of the way.

        • Correct Deb…

          Ive known employers who have ‘shifted’ an employee ‘sideways’ with no responsibilities just to get them out of the way because they can’t fire them

          Sounds like Lou knows what his future looks like with Hanna-Barbera

        • LA was about as far out of the way as you could get in advertising!

          • L.A. is about as far away as you can get from life itself.
            Gross. (so says the life-long New Yorker.)

        • They could have paid what they would have owed him for the remainder. Few companies want to keep a disgruntled, disruptive grump around. SC kept Don on payroll but out of the office and away from clients and staff.

    • Roger: (bemused)… Really

      Jim: Its a lot of money

      Cutler has cashed in and as Roger explained the deal involved Ted, Cutler is surplus to this

      • Roger became President, thereby winning his power war with Cutler. Cutler has no interest in hanging around as the loser in that war.

        • Maybe Duck Phillips can find him a job. I SO hope we have one last visit from Duck, before Mad Men rings down the final curtain!

  10. Regarding Don’s candy machine purchase. I got the sense that it was either the M&Ms or the $100,000 bar, based on his posture and arm movement when he pulled the selection knob. Of course, he could’ve gotten Joey’s wristwatch.

    • Or Peggy’s lost coins re-imbursed by Joan.

    • L to R Butterfinger, Snik Snack, Jujyfruit, Mike and Ike, Hershey, Baby Ruth,$100,000, Clark, M&Ms

      It was the Clark bar the package was red.

      No subtext, me thinks?? But here I go… just for fun…

      Clark as in Clark Kent (aka Superman) whose arch nemesis is Lex Luthor. In Superman (1978) Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) upon reading an article by Lois Lane about her night with the ‘Man of Steel’, begins dissecting his background with his air head girlfriend (Miss Tessmacher) and simpleton sidekick (Otis). Lex eloquently explains:

      ‘Miss Tessmacher, some people can read War and Peace and come away thinking its a simple adventure story, others can read the ingredients on a chewing gum wrapper and unlock the secrets of the universe’

      Don maybe unlocking the secrets of the universe…;) 😉

      • Good one, PJ.

      • Holy cow! In the tv show that was on one person asked another Do you like Gene Hackman! (It sounded like Johnny Carson, but I thought the time was too early)

        Gene Hackman, is the future.


        • The French Connection was just around the bend.
          And Frog One is still at large!!!

          Uh, no, please DO NOT tell me about Part 2.
          A sad mistake.

        • Gene Hackman had a big supporting role in Bonnie & Clyde, that came out in ’67 or ’68. The wonderful Gene Wilder also had a smaller character role.

    • The Hershey bar was in the center of it all. Remember the Hershey pitch?

    • I watched the episode twice. How did I miss Don getting candy from the machine?

      I did notice him drinking a beer at work and remembered discussion here about Don drinking beer when he’s trying to quit drinking. And how men of that generation thought beer wasn’t really drinking…

  11. Interesting episode. I always thought Glen would end up in Vietnam or at least be in a position where he would have to dodge the draft or desert. He always reminded me of Don and that he should be in the same position as Don was in Korea somehow seems apt. Perhaps his story will end with Don helping him escape to Canada.

    I liked what Don said when Sally calls both him and Betty out on their narcissism but I did not like the delivery. It was too angry and cross. I think Don would have been taken aback but not so much that he shouts at Sally. What he told her is the truth every one of us faces eventually; that we are our parents’ offspring and more like them than we would ever admit. Don and Sally have a different relationship by now. They are honest with each other. Sometimes brutally so.

    The theme of Season 7 — both last year and this year — is change. Don has changed in the ten years we’ve known him. Maybe not drastically, but he is self aware. He is also aware of how others see him. The yearning he’s shown from the pilot episode is still there. My experience of change is that people do change. The changes are usually small ones — like quitting smoking or drinking, being more honest with ourselves and our children — but over the course of several years one or two small changes will bring us to a different destination from where we would have ended up if we didn’t make those changes.

    • matt l. —i love this idea of the don/ glen parallel…i don’t know if you have made note of it before, and if you had, i sure wish i picked up on it! my mind is going through all the different moments with betty, with his family history, with his choices on behavior…fantastic!!

    • i also agree with your assessment of the episode…it was interesting, and very interesting moments and words were presented…i also agree that the execution of some of those interesting words/ moments were a little oversold/ heavy handed…for example, i felt joan’s comment of, “you’re ruining my life,” while interesting in character development, could have been more subtle….just like the sally stuff…

    • Well, Betty will have her counseling degree by the time Glenn gets back from Vietnam.

    • I didn’t think he was shouting at Sally. He grabbed her arm as she turned away, and he was somewhat forceful to get her attention, but not shouting. He seemed more hurt than angry to me.

  12. Loved the scene of Don, Sally and her friends having dinner. Wonderfully acted and scripted. Don, indeed, avuncular and charming. Sally wary, annoyed and a little repulsed by him. The two good girls open, sincere and amused by Don’s jokes. And of course, last but not least the worldly beyond her years Sarah flirting with poorhouse-to-penthouse “Don”. (Add a dozen plus years to her and she would be right up Don’s alley.)

    Anyway, fantastic stuff throughout the episode and agree with D. Lipp that the only thing that didn’t quite come off was MW’s son’s acting. Never quite bought into the Glen storyline but the actor certainly has not helped.

    • The problem with Marten is that he’s done almost no acting except Mad Men. Acting requires experience. He was given something extremely complex to do in that scene and he doesn’t have the sophistication that experience brings.

      Maybe he’ll never be a very good actor, only that experience will tell.

      • I thought they guy playing Glen was totally spot on in this. His being weird and awkward added so much to the creepiness of this and other scenes and illustrated how inappropriate the whole relationship was. It wouldn’t have been the same if he was at all suave.

        • I agree. There’s a bit of ‘play acting’ when you try to enact your fantasy in real life with the object of your fantasy!

          It’s rehearsed in your head so often, but really doesn’t come off well in real life!

          • Im with Deborah. I too didnt recognize Glen at first. The initial scene was fine, but he didnt have the chops to pull off the second one with Betty. His inexperience as an actor almost worked to his favor since any 18 year old trying to seduce the married woman of his fantasies would be awkward, but not quite…

    • I genuinely like Betty’s character and generally think JJ has done a good job with her but it’s not like she is an acting powerhouse either. JJ did a solid but not great job in a complex scene but against Weiner’s understandably flat effort it was a bit scary to watch.

      That scene was like watching an old car careening down an icy mountain pass – in the end they held it on the road and got down the hill but there were some scary moments.

      • I know what you mean about the feeling of careening down the hillside but I must say I loved JJ in that scene. And, in retrospect, I think Marten was very convincing as a young man who wants to be brave and wants to be strong, knowing full well that he isn’t either. The fact that Glen came to Betty and unloaded the real reason he enlisted kind of reinforces that people do talk to Betty. On the whole, I was happy to see Glen again as I always found his relationship with Sally to be one of the most sincere of the entire run of MM.

        • I love the whole weird Betty-Glenn-Sally dynamic too! The scene in S1 between Betty and Glen at the bank is one of my all-time favorites “I don’t really know how long 20 minutes is
          Then when Betty banned Glen it reminded me of Anne Bancroft in The Graduate. Last night when Betty turns on the charm for Glen was so getting on Sally’s last nerve.

          And you are right Marten W. holds his own in a flat but effective way with JJ in the kitchen. There is a moment when Glen takes a pull on that beer that says it all about how scared he is both in the moment and for his future.

    • I posted this in the open thread. What do others think? Is it me, or did they switch camera filters for the dinner with Sally and her friends and the bus terminal scenes? For a moment there, I thought it was signifying we were moving into a different era. I think I was seeing things.

  13. Why does Bobby look as if he is 8 to 10 years old? Shouldn’t he be thirteen or fourteen years old by 1970?

    • Yes he should, and Gene should be around 7, he was born in summer 1963. He’s looked like he was 4 years old for three seasons now.

    • Child actors don’t put their ages in their IMDb bios, because it limits the roles they can get. Typically, child actors are small for their age; that way a nine year old can play a six year old. This is done because the older child memorizes better and is legally allowed to work longer hours.

      Mason Vale Cotton has been working as a child actor for 8 years so he probably is at least 12, but has stayed small for his age.

      • My main beef is with the actor who plays Gene. They easily could’ve replaced him with an older actor, especially since I don’t believe he’s ever had one spoken line in the entire series. No one would notice if it was a different actor playing him. Not sure why they’ve kept him so young.

        • Maybe Baby Gene is a little autistic? No one really thought about it then, but the fact he has no dialogue and is a little babyish…

          • Maybe he has “Einstein Syndrome,” high intelligence but slow to learn speech? The Wikipedia article lists examples (in addition to Einstein): John Clive Ward, Edward Teller, Srinivasa Ramaujan, Julia Robinson, Richard Feynman, Clara Schuman, Arthur Rubinstein.

      • A Google search for Mason Vale Cotton says Born June 25, 2002 (age 12), San Diego, CA.

        Even though he was 12 when these episodes were filmed, they have him behaving like an 8-year-old.

        • My cousin looked 11 years old until his senior year if high school and then shot up to 6′

          Doesn’t anyone remember junior high?

          The boys look like children. The same aged girls look years older!

          With the exception of a few boys who look older, and a few girls who look younger…

  14. Did anyone else notice that Don was not drinking during this episode? Mathis brings him a bottle of booze, but it’s never opened. It just sits there. He’s not smoking either. He lights a cigarette for Sally’s friend, Sarah, but we do not see him smoking one. It’s not as though he has quit… it’s just that the director made a point of not showing Don smoking. Or drinking either.

    I wonder if that is part of the “forecast.”

    • He had a beer with him when he came into Roger’s office (Roger commented on it), and a drink in front of him while laying on the couch in his office.

    • Don was drinking in this episode. He was drinking a beer when he went into Roger’s office to discuss the speech he had to write for him. Roger made reference to it. And he had a glass of whisky sitting on the coffee table when Mathis came in. When Mathis said “Should we open it?” Don replied that he already was set.

  15. Deborah, I noticed Bert’s painting last week…

  16. Realtor’s name is Melanie, not Melody. Of course another great early 70s reference to one of favorite performers. Don is drinking less for sure but he had a glass on the table when Mathis brought the bottle. Scout’s Honor!

    • i kinda felt that melanie wouldn’t be the name of someone of her age during that time…felt it would be more what someone her age would name a daughter born in 1970…

      • Melanie Griffith was born in the ’50s.

      • The movie Gone With the Wind was released in 1940, and the book was released in 1936. Melanie Wilkes was a popular character, and this could have influenced Realtor Melanie’s parents to pick her name.

      • The singer Melanie certainly made the name trendy, but her parents named her, right?

        Roberta and I had a similar comment about Harry’s wife, Jennifer. “Jennifer” was a HUGE name in the 70s, as a result of Love Story, leading eventually to the song “27 Jennifers”. But clearly it existed before then (the actress Jennifer Jones is one example).

        • i completely agree with what you’re saying, and I thought the same thing about the name ‘jennifer’ as well…to a certain degree, even ‘meghan and “dawn” stood out as a bit off…the reason I made reference with this one, though is bc I also associate names like melanie to ‘age of aquarius’ parents…not necessarily hippies, but more like the young generation…more like they’d be inspired to name their daughters after the singer melanie…

          • A lot of Melanies (GWTW) became Melodies in the 1960s-70s. It was a hipper name. Also real estate salespeople love to change their names, I’ve found.

    • as for the realtor’s comments about “castles and frisbees,” i kind of thought it was a reference to the past and the future world, presented in a fairy-tale or fiction like aspect…like stories about knights and damsels and/or flying saucers and outer space…reflective of butler shoe ad and space landing…

  17. ” He is avuncular and warm with Sally’s friends.”

    Yes, but if he knows the older friend is something of a “fast girl” (was that what he called her?), then he should have not played off the flirting. Don allows the older girl a cigarette and to what end? I’m not sure that Sally had that all wrong (not that Don would sleep with her but that he liked the attention, much the man whore that he is).

    I knew at some point that Sally would tell one or both parents what she thought of them – I had just hoped it would be when she ran off to see Woodstock. Oh well.

    Mathis brings Don a huge bottle of – what? – scotch, thinking they would be buddies and yet doesn’t listen to Don’s advice. (Where was the bar of soap?) Then he gets petulant when it doesn’t work out and whoops! lets the cat of the bag about what he thinks of Don (wrongly but maybe Don is insecure enough to wonder if others in the office think this).

    I did like that Don listened to the presentation on Peter Pan cookies and had a quick answer to shoot back as to why it would be okay to call Tinkerbell “Tink” – what was it? “You said it 5 times in the last 30 seconds.”

    Don does seem to be struggling about what happiness is. Peggy seems to have thought it thru and I thought she was alluding to – after being the creative director goal – to have a family goal. I thought that “shit on it” comment was about that.

    I actually liked the Glenn/Betty thing and, for a split second, didn’t know who he was. (I also think the actor plays off his lack of acting chops with Glenn’s natural oddness.) I was a bit hoping that Betty would do a Summer of ’42 thing but instead allows Glenn, the brave soldier, a last beer.

    The whole real estate lady thing seemed forced and overwritten to me.

    About tv shows on this episode, I had not remembered the Brady Bunch in 1970 but I looked it up and it started in fall 1969. Right after Bobby says he wants to watch The Brady Bunch, there’s some other show playing and I listened back twice – I think it’s The Flying Nun ( I looked that up and it ended in April 1970.) Hilarious.

    I’m still not feeling this season but I did like that they ended with Roberta Flack singing “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” (although Wikipedia says that it came out in 1972). Interestingly, it was used – to great effect – in Play Misty for Me which was Clint Eastwood’s directorial debut and a great little thriller.

    • I wondered if they was The Flying Nun that we heard playing in the background.

      In the ’69-’70 TV season, The Brady Bunch aired Fridays at 7:30 (ET). If that was The Flying Nun, it aired on Wednesdays that season, which would’ve been a continuity error.

      I didn’t notice anything which would indicate the timeframe of this episode, except when someone mentioned Summer vacation. This would suggest it was May or early June and that the school year was over (the unofficial start of Summer). It would be an even bigger time jump, if Summer ’70 had begun (June 21).

      • The magazines that Don was leafing through will be the best time stamp; I need to go back and look at them to see their dates.

        • No, the magazines won’t help. He was looking at a collection of New Year’s episodes, because he was trying to get a feel for “the future” and forecasting. They were all December 1969.

        • I took a closer look at the cover of The New Yorker on the top of Don’s stack of magazines. I doubt it is a coincidence that the cover includes this line:

          “Life! Death! Love! Hope!”

    • “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” was on a Kingston Trio album{ in the early 60s. Roberta Flack sang it in the late 60s at a DC club and it was also on her first album, in 1968. Another version of it was a big hit for her in ’72.

    • The bottle looked like Chivas Regal – a very expensive premium blend of Scotch whisky (yet not a single malt that a true aficionado would offer).

      • Chivas is blended – not that pricey (these days, anyway) – not that much peat/smoke – actually a good choice of scotch for a CC man like Don.

        • Yup, that was Chivas — my dad is/was basically Don Draper, and that was his drink in the 1960s/1970s. This show kills me, it’s so good at the details!

    • I also wondered about the meaning of that song at that particular moment. He’s staring at the door of a home he’d just lost. He’s had two people dress him down over his good looks. But the song is about falling in love the first time you saw their face. Love is something the Don has not had lately.

      • It’s a song about someone’s face. All Don has going for himself is his handsome face.

    • “I did like that Don listened to the presentation on Peter Pan cookies and had a quick answer to shoot back as to why it would be okay to call Tinkerbell “Tink” – what was it? “You said it 5 times in the last 30 seconds.” ”

      I don’t think that is what Don said. I believe they questioned the line, and Don said, “They will after you say it five times in thirty seconds.” That the line will have meaning after it is repeated, so it will work.

  18. as always I enjoyed the show, but this one left me with a lot of questions…

    why is don suddenly selling his place? and with no new residence lined up?

    was joan serious when she said she’d give up her child for this guy she just met? I can understand the feeling… but how awfully sad

    why was peggy so mad when don asked about her ambitions? he wasn’t putting her down. heck, I wish my boss was interested enough to ask questions like that

    what time does betty send those kids to bed? the brady bunch wasn’t a late night show… and it was broad daylight outside the window…

    • Joan wasn’t serious. She was being sarcastic and testing the guy. He passed.

      Peggy was annoyed because Don scoffed at her goals — “In advertising?”. In her defense, few people would care for their boss inquiring about their life’s goals. Or “meaning of life” as she put it.

      Good point about the Don/apt thing. His marriage with Megan seemed such an illusion anyway that the place might not hold tremendous meaning (from which he would feel the need to run). Still, desiring a fresh start would be understandable regardless.

      • i figured she must have been sarcastic, but it just didn’t quite come through for me… I wasn’t quite sure just where she was going with it

        however, I didn’t get the feeling that don was scoffing at all. to me he seemed to be pressing her to explain herself and help her to better her own understanding of what she wanted. maybe in the context of some of their other encounters she took it in a negative way, but I felt that here she was lucky to have a boss who cared enough to ask what she wanted instead of just ticking off the talking points on a review form

        • I DEFINITELY got sarcasm from Joan.

          Between Don and Peggy…Peggy has seen her fair share of not being taken seriously. Remember when Don threw money in her face a few seasons back? Thats what that scene reminded me of.

          • oh I do remember that scene and I can understand if encounters like that have left her sensitive, but there are also other occasions when don has encouraged her and stood up for her…

            anyway, when she asked for a review he stopped what he was doing, set aside the review paperwork, and tried to have a real conversation with her.

            the “in advertising” remark I took as one veteran of the business talking to another, both knowing the good and bad points of the business

            • Peggy seemed like she was wanting acknowledgement for her work, like she needed her back patted a little and Don didn’t really want to do anything but pump her for Rogers speech.

        • Here’s my translation of Joan’s remark to whatshisface. “Sure, pal, I will totally throw away my child to go running off to the friggin pyramids with you, cuz you’re that awesome. Seriously. Is that what you’re looking for in a woman? Good luck with that.”
          With sarcasm or shade, Joan is so smooth, it takes a second viewing sometimes.

          • Joan really should send him packing.now.

            That angry outburst is not a good sign. Add that to patting himself on the back for not screwing her before yelling at her, really raises red flags.

            Oh Joanie has such bad luck with men.

      • As soon as we saw Don give Megan that million-dollar check, my first thought was: he’ll have to sell the apartment. That check was, what, half of his bonus from the McCann sale? More? He was already doing pretty well before that sale and living comfortably within his means (as opposed to Joan, who’s acting like she was just let out of the cage. But if his means are cut back, well then, he’ll just have to work out how to live more modestly. No big deal; Mr. Poorhouse-to-Penthouse knows the way back to the house where he grew up. (That might also explain smoking and drinking less.)

    • We all thought Peggy was over-reacting to Don when she walked out on the “review” – I chalked it up to past insults/abuse – the lady in the room muttered something about “PMS” (which didn;t seem right to me).

      Such an early summer bedtime – bespeaks a spillover from the Glen thing and some irritation that his “machine gun” reminded her that they’d be shooting at him in ‘Nam. Surely even Betty is not that routinely strict in summer.

      Don showed some “seller’s remorse” even as his agent was exultant – I imagine he was reminded of the last time he need a place on short notice – when Betty booted him out of the Ossining house.

      • Yes, I think he was selling the apartment to move on from his marriage but there is that point when even though you want to move you are inevitably drawn back on your memories when you know it’s actually going to happen.

    • Don probably figured he should start the process of selling his place. Now that he has so few possessions (thanks to Megan’s mother), he can move quickly and easily. He can get a rental if he doesn’t find a new place to buy right away.

      • I think it was in 7.09 when Diana comes to Don’s apartment and says it looks like it is from Architectural Digest that he first mentions that he will sell it. This is before Megan’s mother steals all the furniture.

        • Dick Whitman cares not for possessions or permanency of residence.. Whether he’s living out of the Roosevelt, Midge’s apartment or his own office with no family photos and no bible, he’s least happy when he’s “home”.

    • Peggy is oversensitive to Don. She’s tired of his bullshit, and when someone gets to that point, they don’t hear anything the other person says without it first going through that filter of frustration and agitation. Having said that, Don isn’t asking Peggy these questions for Peggy. He’s asking them for himself. He’s, yet again, using her. He’s using her as a source. On one hand, that could be perceived as flattering to someone, but on the other, I personally feel it is crossing the line into personal space. Is that the kind of question that could gain ground with some bosses? Yes. Is that the kind of question that could cost someone their mobility? Yes. Is that simply none of his f’ing business? Yes. That’s a delicate dance, and some people aren’t interested in doing the dance. Just like Megan isn’t willing to sleep her way into roles. The consequence to these actions for most people is stagnation. They aren’t willing to overlook boundaries, so they get put on the bench.

    • Peggy was mad because she was revealing her ambitions to him and his continued questions implied that they weren’t enough: ‘What else?’ ‘Then what?’ (I’m paraphrasing). He was basically wanting her to say something that helped him understand the meaning of life, but that wasn’t the conversation she, understandably, thought they were having and so by the end of it was just annoyed and left feeling crappy. As with many conversations with him. She felt blindsided. He didn’t really mean it that way, but it wasn’t fair. It was a selfish way for him to seek out answers.

    • That apartment, in NY terms, was over the top when he bought it. It was a showplace with the big sunken living room, not a home. With Megan Don was showing off on how big time he was. He’s never been really comfortable there–the painful scenes when he was on the outs with the agency, it seemed like he was trying to make the space smaller. Also odd was that he didn’t have a “library” which is what a ‘home office’ used to be. FYI, many of those penthouses were built on top of pre-war buildings during and just after WWII because of the housing shortage, their layouts tended to be a bit strange–and they leaked because they were thrown up in a hurry.

      • Any bets on neighborhoods where Don will wind up? I was thinking Melanie will get him something nice but smaller on Sutton Place, with a view of the East River, but also walking distance to the swingin’ Upper East Side bars. Don’t see him in the Village or Central Park West.

        • If he were staying in NY, that makes perfect sense. I still seeing him packing it in…
          I thought it interesting that Don’s examples of how to regain control of a thwarted meeting worked in one case (the pregnant couple bought the apt, after the realtor gave them the Frisbee shpiel, and whats his name got fired. ( I also think that PH terrace would be a deterrent to a young family purchasing Don’s apt and I really don’t think whats his name would have used Don’s ” cant believe you had the balls to come back line”. He knows he’s no pretty faced Don and it rang hollow for me.

          Also had a crazy thought about that very pregnant woman, Sharon Tate, the wine spill and crazy Di. Cant wait to see where this all ends and the minute it’s over I’m going to wish it hadn’t.

        • I think it’s likely Don’s new digs will not be an issue in the final four.

          • Don will sleep at the office and Meredith will tuck him in.
            Then she’ll be standing naked outside the door

            Waiting……….oh, she wishes. 🙂

  19. A younger Don would have taken Roger’s paint-by-numbers assignment and hit it out of the park. This Don has his nose buried so deep in his navel he can’t see beyond it. Meanwhile, if Joan wanted an older, rich guy to feign interest in Kevin, the boy’s actual father works down the hall.

    These bon mots and more, are part of my full recap:


    PS – if we’re going to get bit characters, I vote for Lois or John Hooker.

    Follow me on Twitter – @scarylawyerguy

    • joan’s new guy left me w creepy feeling…wasn’t getting his vibe at all, and for some reason, i felt like she should watch her money…felt like he was sleazy or up to something…first impression, so I may very well be completely wrong…

      • Claudia, I had the same feeling…it was more than a little weird for the guy to show up at the west coast office and pretend to be someone else. His comment about the ice bucket being a sign of a good hotel seemed totally out of place for someone with real dough (probably just a throwaway line but it definitely raised my Creep Meter). This story development, if it really is supposed to be ‘love at first sight’, would seem more appropriate in a film from the 50’s or early 60’s, maybe a Doris Day flick. I guess I was hoping for a more complex Joan to evolve.

        • yes!!! that ice bucket comment stood out to me, as well! I had to replay it to make sure I understood what he said! also, when he says, “your story checked out…” I thought, “why is he investigating her, and if it were a full investigation, wouldn’t he have learned of kevin…maybe just looked into her business assets…” if it’s true, poor joan! will she see herself as no more than pete’s mother and manolo?

          • I thought he was referring to Joan’s postion as an Ad Man.

            • yes, I thought he was too…that’s what left me feeling like it was off…again, I’m not saying im sure this is so, but I felt like if he liked her for her, with no agenda, why would it matter what her job was?

          • I was thinking Joan? You have money, why don’t you check this guy out! Jesus!

        • Strangely enough, that line hit me like Bob’ line about sending cold cuts to Rogers mothers funeral. Both showed something about the guy was not in line with his words.

        • Me too!

          It was right when I was thinking Joan better not marry this idiot he’s going to take all her cash!

          • Like Megan did to old what’s his face.

            • I chuckle each time I come across your post…reminds me of something my brother’s girlfriend at the time called my father many, many years ago….she called him “you old bastard”. My father didn’t take exception with the ‘bastard’ part, but the ‘old’ part really stung. What really stings me is that I am now the age my father was way back when…btw, my brother dumped the girlfriend.

      • Yes, my creep-o-meter went off too. I felt he was a possible gold digger who had investigated her and was moving in for the kill. However, would a goldigger or gigolo be all bent out of shape over a child? Or would he use that to further ingratiate himself to her? (I LOVE kids! Here’s a pony!) Also, he was so upset that he kind of yelled at her to voice his disappointment. That’s not something a professional suave guy would do. It is something a possible creep would do though.

        • krurk…that yelling moment was a biggie for me, too…i wanted to recoil for joan! i was acrually stunned for a moment when he raised his voice…he made me think of duck a little…like selling himself as polished business guy, but theres an quality that keeps rearing its ugly head…

          chris…the move to ny was too much, i agree!! a big lie about kids, park, etc., overtures just are too much…my morher always warned me of people who come on too strong..she said it was bc they had all time in world for new people, so one needs to wonder why people who he / she has known for yrs arent sticking around

          • Your mother is spot on Claudia!!! Too true!

          • Unfortunately, there’s another reason to give this guy the side-eye. Joan has rotten taste in men.

          • It’s too late to draw out another Bob Benson mystery type deal.
            There’s 4 episodes, and a wake up left.
            If they actually try to make something of this guy as, something other than just another Joanie strikeout in the romance department, it will be too, too, too, sad.

        • He “begged her” in PUA terms.


      • Yes something off with that guy. He’s too good to be true. Started off pretending to be someone else – uncomfortably similar to Don/Dick and to Bob Benson of the fake resume and sham marriage proposal. And that he suddenly shows up in NY and just as suddenly plans to move there? Pure stalker movie. BUT THEN AGAIN, CAN YOU BLAME HIM? It is our Joan after all – so what’s weird at all about up-ending your life for a shot at her?

      • I can’t imagine them ending the limited time left on the show either Introducing a complex creepy boyfriend or a “let’s finally give Joan a nice husband” storyline. I guess MM doesn’t want the last season to feel totally like a static goodbye with characters we already know but I do feel regret at every moment spent on non-essentials at this point. I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt that the merit of these will be known before the end. I would prefer Joan’s remaining time to be spent either with Roger somehow or showing her feeling her way through the business world at a more complex level.

        • YES. I really regret that Don didn’t pick Joan’s brain for his “future of SC&P” speech assignment. I bet she’d have something interesting to say – and maybe Don’s not dying to hear it (though he should be), but I certainly am!

    • Feign interest in Kevin? Maybe. But the new guy (Richard) is very much interested in Joan as Roger hasn’t been except for shits and giggles or when he feels someone his poaching his game.

  20. A question about the guy Lou brought to the L.A. office. I wasn’t whether we had seen him before, or where it was. I’m thinking either at the Carnation pitch that Don and Roger did, on their trip out West. Or maybe it was the older fellow we saw at the Burger Chef pitch. Anybody know?

  21. So being great at your job is not enough….what all the characters are searching for is true love. In the episode where they were all drugged at the office, the hippie girls tells Don that everyone’s question is the same, ” Does somebody love me?”

    • Maybe Don isn’t looking for love anymore. When they give him the cookie pitch and the tag line has “love” in it, he says “do we have to have love?”

      Don has always thought the next thing, “the future,” must involve a woman. Maybe it doesn’t.

      The key line to me this week was Joan’s prospective man saying “I made a plan, it was no plans.” Everyone tries to think about the future this week, especially Don, but no one can manage to do it, except maybe Sally’s friends, who are too young to know how impossible it is. The scariest is Glenn, who is probably headed toward violent death. Ted and Peggy can only see it as the next big work victory.

      Don wants something more now, but he can’t for the life of him figure out what it might be.

      • Since the Megan marriage I have wondered if Don, as a character, would show the most growth if he were alone and avoiding self-destruction. We saw a glimpse of such progress when he was dating Faye, working out, cutting his drinking and keeping a journal. And then Megan and “Tomorrowland” happened and he reverted to master.

        Maybe now he is returning to where he was right before his second marriage.

  22. I always imagined MM ending with Don, giving up NY and advertising and going back to CA. and opening Dick’s auto body shop…I think he’s done with all of it.

    I did not feel Joan’s sarcasm. I thought she was actually considering it out of desperation.

    • In Don’s office we see a sombrero about which there have been several recent comments.
      This is a foreshadowing of Don’s future.
      DivaDebbi is on the right road, but not all the way there.
      Don’s future does in involve autoobiles ( a desired future of advertiing agencies ). Remember Don was selling cars when Anna tracked him down. And, Don liked tinkering with cars when he visited Anna.
      And his future involves FURS.

      Don goes to Mexico and opens a creative car reupolstering tuck and roll business using fur instead of vinyl.

      • If you want to go down that path, how about Lane Pryce’s New York Mets pennant??

        • Don may love NY, and always wanted to work in New York, but he ain’t no “Yankee”??

          He leaves NY… thats my two bits

          • The Mets are located in Queens. That means powerful women are being foreshadowed for Don. It’s all in his office.

            The ascendant Peggy, as his Venus in Furs, will drive with him down to Mexico where they will rendezvous with the ghost of William S. Burroughs’ late wife, shot in Mexico City. Don always did connect with the Beat writers….

    • I felt more desperation, resignation and anger (is that right?) than sarcasm. Her timing in life is just forever off. She didn’t REALLY mean it, but she kind of meant it.

      Poor Joan. Happy ending for her, please!!!

    • Don gets cars, but into the ‘hyper’ version of the used car business on the West Coast. He is one of the first to open an auction company that buys and sells antique and classic cars. The business started to take off in the 1970s with Hemmings Motor News and the like appealing to collectors–back then a ‘new’ classic car was still pre-1942 (AACA and CCCA were well established by then.). Point of fact is that Kruse and G. Potter King started in the 1970s–Barrett-Jackson came later and now of course you have Bonhams, RM, Sothebys etc. Draper-Jackson, anyone?

      • By 1970, Don’s 62-63? sky blue Caddy is a classic.
        Where is that car?
        Was that the car Glen was driving, when he was asked by Don what would he wish to do right now?

        • By 1970, it was just a 7 year old Caddy deVille! No one was collecting them at this point. His Cadillac dealer would have convinced him to trade about 1967 for a new one–and the ’67s were sweet, much nicer than the ’63 across the board. By 3-4 years most ’60s cars showed their age and were maintenance hogs.

        • Don traded the ’63 in years ago, he had a ’66 (or thereabouts) when he and Megan first got together. 3 years was the usual time frame for trading a car in in those days. We haven’t seen his car lately, or if we have I don’t remember. I was sort of half expecting Don to have a late ’60s Mercedes-Benz since Jon does the voiceovers for Mercedes-Benz TV commercials these days.

  23. PS Don looks like hes lying in a coffin in the above photo IMO…

  24. The one thing I noticed in this episode was the amount of cussing and the way “older” folks (Don, Betty and Pete) were taken aback by it. That seemed a deliberate choice to show changing social mores. Loved seeing Sally. The scene with Don and Sally and Sally’s friends was delightful. I hope the thing with the developer works out for Joan.

    Also, I want to see a scene with just Roger and Ted solely for the mustaches alone.

    • YES! The “bad language” issue emerged as a pitched generational problem right at this point. It had gone from being spoken by social outsiders (beats, hippies, artists) in the 1960s to being spoken by kids in a family in the 1970s. With Pete’s “Jiminy Christmas” last week to the f-bombs spoken by children and employed underlings this week, we are seeing a major source of cultural tension.

  25. The final scene of the final episode:

    Don is pitching an ad.
    He uses the nostalgia theme and the still in vogue Kodak “Wheel”.
    As he spins his captivating ( for the client and for us ), we see projections of our favorite characters and scenes from the past 10 years.

  26. Well, for all those people who didn’t like the distractions of the waitress and the Canadians, this episode certainly delivered the goods with a whole lot of Joan, Peggy, Sally and Don. Plus we go the whole meta “what’s the future going to hold?” theme, which is what the entire audience is asking. It wasn’t the subtlest move Weiner and company have ever made, but I loved the episode enough not to care. Loved the reappearance of Glen, who I completely did not recognize, even if the actor wasn’t quite up to the work he had to do. Because of him we got a big dose of petulant teenage Sally – complete with the F-bomb that so shocked Pete during the Peter Pan meeting – and watching Kiernan eat up that material is such a joy. I hadn’t realized how much of Sally’s relationship with Glen was unknown to Betty, and I loved Betty’s surprise at learning they were “pen pals,” especially after Sally’s joke about being late.

    It also makes sense if you’re going to have a episode where people are tying to figure out their futures, we concentrated so much on parent/child relationships – Joan and her son, her new boyfriend and his freedom post children, Betty/Don and Sally, Glen and his relationship with his mother and stepfather, even the buyers of Don’s apartment have one on the way. And of course we have Don, the perpetual child, who has ended up in a place he never imagined, doesn’t know where he’s headed, and literally has no place to call home.

    But I don’t think the generation gap has never been so clearly demonstrated as in this episode. Betty was trying to be obtuse in her talk with Sally about the trip, and Sally saw right through it. Glen, who’s riding around with a girl he just met, who wants grass, made a point of learning Loretta’s name (does Betty even know it?) and clearly he and Sally have discussed the war and the student movement at length.

    • This is an excellent observation. This is exactly the context I was thinking about for the comment I made, up above, for the comment about “bad language” (f-bombs).

    • YES, the generation gap was so prominent in this episode!!! Kids couldn’t talk to their parents like they can now, their worlds were so far apart.

  27. Glenn the character had a lot of guts (and yes, desperation) to take a shot with Betty. At 18, stiff and awkward is about right. Bravado, self-importance, and the rest – perhaps not so much.

    It would be interesting to find out how Getzinger advised him for that approach.

  28. Nice scene with Betty and Sally. Good to see smiles and kidding. Sally had me going for a bit that she was “late” – but Betty wasn’t fooled for an instant.

    Betty is still pretty unplugged regards Sally’s boarding school mores – sharing her 1950 schoolmates’ “naughtiness” – staying up late (!), breaking all the lightbulbs (!!). Later Glenn’s new friend asks if Sally’s holding. Sally has a contingency plan – “we can get it (at Playland)”

  29. My “Forecast” for the last scene of Mad Men. Don Draper, perhaps Dick Whitman, turns to the camera to make his final pitch… to us… the viewers… pitching the ending of the series, painting a mural of perfection amidst the imperfection… and we all eat it up with great satisfaction.

  30. Beyond the whole “What is the meaning of life?” motif of this episode, I was struck by Don having to face two stinging moments of rejection from cherished women — his daughter and then Peggy.

    Sally had two outbursts, actually. When she yells at Glenn that he’ll be killing kids the same age as the ones he’ll be seeing in Playland, Betty dismisses her by saying something like, “Don’t pay any attention to Jane Fonda here.”

    Peggy’s rage was over the top. In the context of a performance review, where the Big Conceptualizer was prodding her to think about what she wants, her anger at not being taken seriously was shocking, as was her parting rebuke that he should write down a list of his dreams so she could shit on them.

    Since nothing is accidental in this show, my take was that it’s 1970 and men like Don Draper better get used to being told off.

    Maybe it was no coincidence that Betty, constantly portrayed as shrew the last few seasons, got to be warm and kind. Given that her relationship with Glenn in the early seasons was right on the edge of kink (“may I have a lock of your hair?”), it was nice to see them back being edgy again. She took his hand and held it to her face. Heck, here’s your spinoff show.

  31. Love lippsistes and have been reading since the start of season 2. My thoughts on 710:

    I think there are similarities between Glenn and young Don. Both trying to escape home via war. Is it pushing it too far to look at both of their relationships with older women? Amy/Don and Betty/Glenn? Why did Amy connect with Don in the first place? Why did she take his virginity?

    To me, Joan and Capt Pike played out like a typical Lifetime flick but I’m holding out hope that MW has something more interesting in the next few weeks. There is plenty of season left.

    Regarding Don and Sally’s friend. I didn’t think Don was flirting with her because he likes to do that sort of stuff while alone. How old was Joy? How old was Stephanie? Probably not 17 but not too far off either.

    Anticipating the ending. My guess is that Don Draper will indeed grow as a person by the end of the series. But what would show growth? Much of his dysfunction gets expressed with his significant other (or mistress) but after 7/8 seasons, I think that angle is not satisfying. I don’t think he will get back together with an old or new flame. Mending with Sally? Been done somewhat. Mentor Peggy? Also been done. I’m projecting but maybe it is an existential problem and maybe Don finds God or some sort of spiritual experience. There IS a tomorrow.

    • Agreed regarding Joan and the Lifetime movie of the week. This story development just doesn’t ring at all true to me, rather it seems a bit cliche. First we see Joan humiliated by the boys from McCann-Erickson, so she does some high-priced shopping therapy, then she winds up being swept off her feet by a uber-wealthy stranger but she tells him she has the job of her dreams and he is okay with that, and oh the 4 year old child and mother are fine too. This is so off the mark as to be kind of laughable if MM were ever to be taken seriously about women’s issues in the ’60’s and 70’s.

      I’d love to see this creep turn out to be a creep, Joan and Peggy meet up once again to bitch about life (Joan about the creep, Peggy about her “review”), and the two of them take the leap and start their own agency. Of course, Joan might be on the hook due to the M/E but who cares. I would love to see Joan and Peggy head into the sunset with a new exciting agency of their own while the men are left behind trying to figure out the next big thing…obviously, the next big thing needs to be a brand spanking new ad agency run by Joan and Peggy. Whew, had to get that off my chest!

  32. “Do you ever feel like there’s less to actually do but more to think about?” Heck yeah when suddenly you have enough time to think!

    You can’t put your foot in the same river twice and you can’t apply a past vision to a present future so the old SCDP presser is worthless. Don notes that in the SCDP days it was easier in its own way because you were too busy trying to keep things going for another day to make strategic plans. Now SC&P is stabilized, Don and others are materially secure and the future is more confusing than ever. Always a lot tougher to write than to edit and now Don is staring at a black canvas symbolized by the empty apartment – now even that is gone.

    To me the most telling exchange in a solid episode was between Sally and Don. Nobody knows Don better than Sally now. That excellent exchange at the bus station ends in a draw because both Sally and Don are 100% right. The truth is that Don and Betty do in fact “ooze” (that word is SO Sally-awesome). Within a single day Sally has to endure her Mother and Father oozing in a borderline inappropriate way with Sally’s friends. Don and Betts knew a long time ago that this thing (if you have it) is powerful and you can turn it on and off at will (sorry Mathis – rotten gene pool!). Guess what Sally, Don is right too. The acorn didn’t fall far and the behavior Sally condemns is gonna be a big part of her future too.

    So where does that leave Don? Interesting that he tries to go back to the SCDP plan of the past for the answers to the “Gettysburg Address” speech but he won’t go back to the Hershey Bar past for clues to his plan for the future.

    A minor prediction that we will see Don visit his brother’s grave before this thing is over – it would be the right thing to do for Don and the series. In the meantime another excellent recap Deb!

    • I’ve always liked that Don gives respect and lays expectations on Sally. He could have blown off her comments as a tantrum, but instead pointed out that there was a lot of him and Betty in her – and she could take that and improve on it.

      Such is the dense shorthand within a Weiner script.

    • I don’t think he knows where his brother’s grave is. Adam died in NYC, and Don didn’t even know about it until weeks/months later. He probably got a pauper’s burial. I can see him going to find Dick Whitman’s/Don Draper’s grave, though.

  33. You know, I keep thinking about Don equating Roger’s need for a “where are we going in the future” speech with the Gettysburg Address. Lincoln gave that speech at the dedication of Arlington National Cemetery, and it was to memorialize the war dead. Nothing could be further from the future at all. If that is how Don saw looking ahead, no wonder he can’t see what he wants down the road. Of all the death images we’ve been seeing and hearing in this half-season, this one is resonating more with me (maybe because it’s the latest, or maybe it’s because I’ve seen and heard the Lincoln speech so many times). It would have been such a different feeling if Don had thought about the “I have a dream” speech, but he went straight to a memorial. Eerie.

    • I’m convinced, more than ever, that Don is going to die before the show ends. He’s having trouble imagining the future because he does not have one. Unless MM’s pace goes into hyperdrive, I can’t see that there is time enough left for epiphanies and the road to redemption. Heart attack or choking on a Hershey bar would be my guess…

      • Maybe it will be the end for Don Draper and a new beginning for Dick Whitman.

      • “Don is going to die before the show ends. He’s having trouble imagining the future because he does not have one.”

        This is more mystical than literary or metaphorical – the latter two are what Weiner goes for. Plus, Weiner has been saying for several years that he knew how he would end the Draper saga – while this does not exclude killing him off, it would be a big buildup without a worthy payoff.

        • I think Barbara is on the right track, regarding the end game.

          Don will die, but it won’t show up as a physical death. We’ve seen hints about it in recent seasons. In the S-6 premiere episode that finds Don in Hawaii, he’s there to experience the client’s resort hotel. His ad proposal to them, is met with opposition, when he describes the unseen man in the ad, shedding everything and escaping. I think Don will ultimately see that he has used up the Don Draper persona. It has served its purpose and not always particularly well for him.

          Ever since the S-7b premiere, when we heard Peggy Lee’s “Is That All There Is?” I’ve had the feeling that this whole season is leading up to Don ultimately realizing that none of it means anything, and it doesn’t mean anything that it doesn’t mean anything. In the course of the series, he’s been trapped. By his past and by the present. Sometimes it’s hard to tell where one leaves off and the other begins. Now, he’s questioning the future and it may be dawning on him that the future won’t offer much of a respite either. It’s just another place to be trapped in – especially as Don Draper. Somehow, he’ll grasp the utter futility and pointlessness of it all, and in that realization, he’ll become free.

          We’ve recently seen another symbolic glimpse of this, as Don stands in his empty $82,000 fixer upper. All the trappings are gone, leaving just him. Empty and meaningless is a great jumping off point. Perhaps, by the end of the series, he will and in the doing of it, begin again as who he is and not who he’s not.

          In another thread recently, I wondered about the significance of always seeing the Lucky Strike logo on the pack in his shirt pocket and how it resembles a target. Maybe he’ll be hit with a serious, though not fatal, health challenge (heart attack?) and through that, the penny will drop, things will finally click and he’ll get it.

          • Yeah, the heart attack was used as an awakening for Roger in Season One. He did not really begin to awaken until later seasons….and he has always been half asleep, being a child still basking in the wealth accumulated by his father.

            I think the heart attack will awaken the Draper-Whitman transfer. It was the lure of wealth and glamour and modernity that brought on Draper. It will be the need for honesty and simplicity that brings back Whitman.

          • Or Mathis returns with a gun.

    • I agree with some but not all of your points Pele but definitely agree that Rodger’s choice to compare Don’s effort to a Gettysburg Address was intentional and meaningful to the episode writers.

      The speech was actually given as part of the dedication of a national cemetery in Gettysburg PA some four months after the July battle. The speech Don is instructed to draft is supposed to be 2,500 words – about ten times the number in the Gettysburg Address – which I think might be a dig at modern wordiness, advertising etc. While technically the purpose of the Gettysburg speech is to help dedicate a cemetery, most of the words are forward looking and are basically about the task of the living to carry forward the work of those who died in the cause.

      Jury’s still out for me as to how all this fits with The Forecast but I think it is safe to say that it is getting at the challenge to the living to advance their lives in meaningful ways. Maybe also to underscore Glen’s departure to Vietnam and potential sacrifice.

      • The Gettysburg Address has popped up before. We saw it in The Crash, when Jim Cutler’s Doctor Feelgood made an office call and injected many of the staff with some of his proprietary serum. Speed-induced hilarity and confusion ensued, though not much in the way of useful creative output for the Chevy account.

        A highlight (or lowlight) was Don’s: “Four score and seven years ago, this country had some memorable happenings.”

      • Of course you’re right that it was Gettysburg, not Arlington. I’ve been to the battlefield twice and should have known better. My bad. And I keep being drawn to the “little note or long remember” line, which, in its own way, is so symbolic of so much advertising! Maybe it’s the death knell not of any character in the series, but of the series itself, in which case it’s wildly wrong, because MAD MEN is outstandingly memorable. However, that’s ironic in itself – remembering a TV series more than the battlefield sacrifices of so many Americans.

        TV employs good salespeople; death does not.

    • Pele,

      Great catch!

  34. I thought the awkwardness displayed in the Glen/Betty kitchen scene was intentional, although you are absolutely correct about Martin being a green actor. When I was a teenager I was forever “writing scripts” as my mother called it. I imagined scenarios, how they would play and it never worked out the way I thought it would. By the time I was 18, I had pretty much given up as people rarely responded the way I thought. Glen has been playing this out in his head but now it’s real and he’s shaking inside. And really not working out well.
    Has anyone noticed that Martin/Glen resembles Joaquin Phoenix as he gets older?

  35. Kentucky Derby time- Remember My Old Kentucky Home/Past Episodes and Characters,

    So here is the opening field and odds for characters from the past appearing as guests or ghosts in one or more of the remaining 4 Episodes:

    Anita 3:1 Archie 20:1
    Abigail 10:1 Anna 1:10
    Achilles 100:1
    Adam 1:10
    Allison 15:1
    Abe 15:1

    Prior Bobby Draper(s) 50:1 Bud Campbell 5:1
    Bobbie B, 2::1 Beverly Farber 100:1
    Beth 1:1 Bethany 4:1
    Blankenship 7:1

    Connie H. 1:5 Carla 1:3
    Charlie Fiddich 100:1 Chip & Dip Set 2:1
    Crab C. ( w/ or w/o Duck) 5:1 Carlton 55:1

    Dorothy/Dot 12:1 Duck ( w/ or w/o Crab ) 1:25
    Dr. Edna 25:1 Dr. Wayne ( as Betty’s Psych Prof. ) 30:1
    Dennis Hobart 50:1 Danny 2:1

    Francine 3:1 Freddy 1:3
    Faye 2:1 Father Gill 6:5

    Ginsberg 3:1 Dr. Greg 4:1
    Gene H. 1:4 Geoffrey 145:1
    Dr. Guttman 35:1 Gudrun Au Pair 50:1
    Guy McK. 20:1

    Hollis ( odds likely to go up or down ) 1:1
    Helen B. 12:5

    Jane 5:1 Joyce 20:1
    Joy 17:1 Jennifer C. 35:1
    John H. 15:1 Judy H. 40:1
    Jimmy B. 9:2

    Hildy 65:1 Herb R. ( w or w/o Peaches ) 5:1
    Hobo 1:25

    Katherine Olson 5:1 Klaus 600:1
    Kitty 45:1 Kurt 50:1

    Lois ( w or w/o husband Guy McK ) 1:5 Lee Garner, Jr. 1:4
    Lane 1:25 Lakshmi 60:1

    Mirabelle 55:1 Morris G. 100:1
    Mack 10:1 Monolo ( w or w/o Peter Mom 500:1
    Marge ( Now, that would be Progressive odds ) 15:1

    Paul 1:3 Pauline F. 3:1
    Phoebe 18:1 Peter’s Rifle 1:5

    Robert Pryce 17:1 Rollo 65:1

    Swami 100:1 Saint John Powell 15:1
    Suzanne F. 1:25 Smitty 10:1
    Sarah Beth 40.1 Stephanie 16:1
    SAL 1:500 The Schillings( Fat Chance ) 50:1

    Tara 130:1 Teddy ( Matt’s younger son) 2:1
    Toni Charles 45:1

    William H. 21:1 Willie 50:1

    • What about Midge?

    • Love this…..particularly the comments. Crab….Duck; Duck…Crab. (Roger then gives the little self satisfied smirk that J. Slattery has sooo perfected.)

    • I especially like that Hollis’s odds may go up or down! ; )

    • Fantastic tote board!!

      As I was perusing the list, I wondered it you’d put the wrong first name, with the surname “Hobart” – that is, until I realized that Dennis Hobart is the Sing-Sing prison guard, we met in “The Fog.”

      Call me crazy, but I think there’s some kind of connection between Dennis Hobart, McCann Erickson honcho Jim Hobart and The Hobo. I’ve recently pondered the possibility of The Hobo having grown up to become Jim Hobart, but that’s probably not it. Now I’m thinking that Hobo Hobart & Hobart are “types” in the life of Dick/Don. There’s some kind of cosmically significant thing that each of them brings to, or tells us about, Dick/Don. The three men even a bear a bit of a resemblance to one another. I can’t define it, but I believe there’s something going on with these three and Dick/Don. If I’m correct, there may not be a big “reveal.” With only four episodes left in the series, there just isn’t time to do it that way, but whatever it is could be conveyed by means of flashbacks and references.

    • Put me down for Lane Pryce! Jared Harris directs the next episode and my guess is that Lane makes an appearance.

      • Ooh, I like this idea! Ghost of Lane Pryce (Ghost of Christmas Future?) gives Don a wake-up call….

  36. I can’t help but wonder where Don is going to live now that Melanie sold his “$85,000 fixer-upper.”

    I’m not a betting person, but I think we’ll see him in a room at the Roosevelt Hotel until he decides to leave NYC and advertising for good.

    My irrational wish is that at the end of the show his future pathway is to revert into Dick Whitman but keeps the confidence and writing ability of Don Draper and becomes a writer in the style of John Cheever.

    • Or a 70s screenwriter…I’ve often thought this. this is when movies turn the American dream upside down. And happens to be a favorite era of film of MW.

      I think that Don’s need to express the truth of his life vs the need he had to idealize it amber/advertising is going away…

      he could take the writing path that Ken didn’t take.

      He has a contact too: Daniel J. Siegel

      Plus he loves movies!

  37. When Glenn stops by to say goodbye to Betty, she tells Glenn that he’s welcome in their home anytime–a few years earlier she fired Carla because he stopped by to say goodbye to Sally when she was moving. The new housekeeper opens the door as a callback to Carla.

  38. The Realtor’s last words to Don after she told him that she sold his apartment was “Now we have to find a place for you.” Finding a place for Don is what the rest of the series will be about.

    • Spot on I think and may also be a call back to the Halloween episode when Don is asked jokingly – “and who are you?” That question summed up the issue with Don at the time and it’s part of the new question. What is Don’s place?

  39. If Sally hadn’t already caught Don with Sylvia, she might have only been mad at her friend for trying to flirt with her dad, and not aggravated with him. The girl was truly trying to act sophisticated and grown up, but was, IMO, failing miserably. Sally saw through both of them.

  40. I may have missed it in the comments so far, but was anyone else struck by how much the real estate agent resembled Betty? The shot of her from behind overlooking the balcony was spot-on Betts to me.

    • She also reminded me of Pete’s realtor girlfriend from California – can’t remember her name.

      • Yes! I was confused at first, because I thought it was the same person, but something didn’t feel quite right (her being friendly with Don, although it took me some time to remember “her” with Pete).

    • I thought she had Alison’s facial features, kind of Betty’s hair and was wearing an outfit just like the stewardess from episode 7b1


      We first see her (I think) standing in the area where Betty stood in s5 and saw a Megan through the window.

      The other prominent Betty place we see her is at the bar with Don, discussing moving. Just like in s4 with a Betty at the kitchen Bar…

      She reminds me a bit of frazzled Alison when she’s picking up his messes and fixing things for him-she’ll make his bed, she tells him to get out! But she’s frazzled for much different reasons…he was lackadaisical about his keys back then, he’s lackadaisical about his responsibilities in selling his own apartment. Leaving it all to her. Even waking him up!

      He keeps calling people on their responsibilities this episode, but part of those responsibilities are his.

      I think several things in this episode call back to Alison: Mathis of course telling him off, Peggy not wanting to write her own review…

  41. Glenn running off to war to get away from an overly critical step father is kind of reminiscent of a young Dick Whitman running off to war to get away from an overly critical step mother and a very unhappy home life. The more things change the more they stay the same!

    • He may have known that since he flunked out, it was just a matter of time until he’d be drafted.

  42. I don’t know why you think that Don’s stupid frisbee/castle story is the one that allowed Melanie to make the sale. That’s a big assumption, and it’s not supported by anything said in the episode.

    • I think it is reasonable to assume that Melanie was inspired by Don’s advice on how to spin the apartment’s backstory, and the frisbee/castle story may just have been the backstory she went with.

    • The Frisbee story that he pulled out of his hat was just one more example in the episode of a man with talents. One of those talents is to come up yarns (or total BS) that save the day. It was a throwaway moment, but it was funny.

  43. It was interesting to me that the only two people who did not have a plan going forward was Sally and the person she did not want emulate, her father. Sally was forced to do the school trip and seemed like she did not give much thought to the rest of the summer but by default might lifeguard again. Don had no plan where to go professionally or where to live.

    The word “hopes” was stated many times in the episode but Don and Sally both had none for themselves.

  44. There were two instances that Don referenced “failure”- one to the realtor and one to Mathis. In a previous episode, when Pete called Don on a Sunday complaining that he and the agency were not highlighted in the newspaper, Don also referenced “failure”. Megan’s sister also referenced “failure”relating to Megan’s marriage to Don.

  45. I wonder if Megan will be back for any of the remaining episodes, and what Megan it will be now that she has $1 million in security in the bank. It took about a week to sink in but Megan looked like what we now call a ‘booth babe’–at trade shows, the models who show off the cars, the TVs, the industrial equipment etc. The over the top, costumey man-trap style (the piled-up, too dark hair! the flirty too short dress!) just like the apartment she had with Don, is what still sells at trade shows. Maybe that was the only work she could get if she couldn’t get acting. Odd that her fashion sense was so off. By 1970 hair was flatter, lighter and the look including makeup was overall more natural, and hemlines came down. The Cali beach girl look didn’t rub off on her at all–in fact, she’s less so than when she moved there. Defensive perhaps because Californians are famous for looking down on Easterners and she’s not only Eastern, but Canadian, so she got more ‘Eastern’ as a result.

    • Megan will find success, “she’s just one of those girls.” And with the cash she has now, she’ll be okay.
      Brunettes live in California too.

  46. Very good episode. Don no longer seems depressed or despairing, but pensive instead. He’s pondering existential questions. Don has no religious impulse and will not look for nor “find God” as another commenter mentioned. He looks to himself and to other people for his answers. The conclusion he will reach, based on his scope and method of research, is one he already intuitively knows but emotionally cannot yet accept: that each individual by nature is essentially alone in the world and the universe, even when involved in the various relationships which are supposed to change the individual from “alone” to “together”. All human relationships are temporary, possibly illusory. They are not transformative much less curative or corrective. This includes the “relationships” people have with things (money, possessions, alcohol, sex, work). And because all individuals exist in this solitary state, it is, paradoxically, the one thing that all humans share and have in common. Yes, if one is looking for meaning solely at this life on earth with other human beings and things, it is indeed “all there is”. Don has said that “love” and “happiness” are inventions of advertising men. If he believes that, how can he ever expect to find either? Don’s life moves “forward” and also “away” so I think he will leave his invented life behind (the one he’s lived for 20 years) but not physically die. He only likes the beginning of things so his conclusion and remedy will be, leave this thing I started behind, because the beginning is over. It was over before Season 1 started; we came in as the beginning had started ending. His loose ends are tying up, he will be ready to go.

  47. I happened to be watching Season 1’s The Marriage of Figaro tonight, in which Betty mentions that Glen’s age is 9. However, in this week’s The Forecast, which takes place just over 10 years later, Glen says he’s 18 years old,

    • Maybe he’s turning 19 shortly later this year.

      • Ahh, yes, but The Marriage of Figaro takes place in April of 1960. I’m not sure what month The Forecast takes place in, but it’s definitely after April of 1970. So if Betty’s correct and Glen is 9 in The Marriage of Figaro, he would have to be at least 19 in The Forecast since it takes place over 10 years later.

  48. I disagree that Don performed competently in every scene.

    His advice to Mathis, like his advice to Lane, was right for Don, wrong for them. He can’t yet see other people’s needs.

    He talks about responsibility angrily to others, but is still not taking full responsibility for himself! His realtor has to get him out of bed!

    He thinks Sally is nervous to go on the trip rather than livid at his boundary breaking behavior at dinner. He was not being a dad at dinner. He was being Don.

    He tells Sally it’s up to her to be more than her looks-but it’s the advice he needs. Sally already is more than her looks.

    • Sally is so hostile that it also oozes from her. There’s no joy, just cynicism. Surprised that she even has friends because she gives nothing of herself.

      I enjoyed Don putting her eyeballs back in their sockets, because she deserved it.

      Don could have told Mathis exactly what to do and he would have screwed it up–and blamed it on Don. He lacked boundaries and even common sense. As much as you want to, and they deserve it, you don’t tell the client to f*** off. Remember he also blamed Peggy. I’ve worked with people like that and they are better off gone.

  49. I think the show will end with Don in Hawaii, walking into the ocean.

  50. When Betty takes Glenn’s hand and puts it on her face, it’s reminiscent of the time in season 1 when Betty see him sitting in the car and she’s so sad and goes to Glenn for comfort and he puts out his hand (with a mitten on it) in a gesture to comfort her.

    • Yeah, it took me right back to that moment! So sad!

      • That scene is where Betty says the funniest thing ever in the series to me, “Oh, adults don’t know anything”.
        I howl, and scream just thinking about it.

    • I’m wondering if the scene with Glen returning may have actually been a fantasy of Betty’s, like the one with the air conditioner salesman. Glen hated Betty in “Tomorrowland” and he seemed to have a genuine friendship w/Sally, running away from school to come to NYC and go to the museum. And then coming to her boarding school and fighting his friend when Sally tells Glen his friend tried to force her to make out with him.

      The whole “only being friends with Sally to be close to Betty” seems to fit Betty’s need to be the center of attention, but does not seem to fit reality.

      • I know. A big difference from when she fired Carla because she let Glenn in the house to say goodbye to Sally (which ultimately led to Don and Megan. Probably no coincidence that the door was opened by the new housekeeper as a reminder of Carla. Seems like a big leap to “you’re welcome in our house anytime”.

  51. The title “Forecast” reminded me of “Tomorrowland” since both are about the future. Also, “Forecast” could be called “Tomorrowland Redux.” Don’s right back where he was at “Tomorrowland,” recently divorced and selling the house of his previous marriage. Going in circles, or as he told the stewardess in “Out of Town,” “I keep going to a lot of places and ending up somewhere I’ve already been.”

  52. In each of the past 2 episodes at least one of Don’s exes has made an appearance (Rachel, Betty, Sylvia). So there was an expectation that another should show up in “Forecast.” And while no one physically was there, I’m suspecting someone was there thematically, specifically Anna.

    The title “Forecast” is about seeing into the future, which reminded me of Anna’s Tarot reading for Don.

    “Forecast” begins with a blond Betty lookalike, which echoes back to “Jet Set,” the episode in which Don calls Anna. Then there’s the fact that the blonde in a real estate agent, and Don bought Anna’s house for her and legally owned it while she was alive. The first words of the episode are the agent calling Don by the full name Don Draper, the gift Anna gave Don. The agent’s name is Melanie, which gains significance after Roger mentions the Gettysburg Address, which is of the Civil War, and which ties into “Gone with the Wind.” In GWTW, Melanie Wilkes is an extremely kind and understanding person, like Anna. The agent tells Don he can’t take a shower, while in “Mountain King” Don asks Anna if he can take a shower and rest. Then the agent has Don arrange table furniture similar to how Don fixes Anna’s chair.

    And when Don returns to the apartment and asks the agent how things went, she gives him an assessment of his life, similar to how Anna gave Don an assessment of his life in the Tarot reading. At the end of the episode Melanie tells Don “Now we have to find a place for you” in a way that’s similar to how Anna tells Don after she first meets him “So what am I going to do with you?”

    But more significant may be Richard .Joan meets Richard by chance, just as Anna met Don, and more importantly it’s a situation where he is taking someone else’s identity. He pretends to be Jim McCloud, and a cloud is something that blocks sunlight, just like a drape, as in Draper. And his real name? Richard, as in Richard/Dick Whitman.

    Joan and Richard hit it off like Don and Anna did. There is also the California reference, which goes back to Anna. Richard is in real estate, which echoes Don buying Anna her house. And when Richard meets Joan at SCPD and Joan tell him all about her (the divorces and living with her mother), Richard accepts her, just as Anna knew everything about Don and accepted him.

    On the darker side, Don not shutting down the flirtation of Sally’s friend could be a reminder of how Don hit on Anna’s niece Stephanie. And Sally’s reference to someone forging her signature on travel’s checks references Don basically forging the signature of the real Don Draper since he assumed the identity.

    Also, in the structure of MM, whenever Don ends a relationship (“Good News”) or contemplates doing so (“Mountain King”) he visits Anna. Since she is no longer there to visit, perhaps her memory symbolically permeates the episode.

    In addition to Anna’s presence, it’s void could be a theme of the episode. Don keeps asking people about what they want in the future and he gets very practical responses from Peggy and Ted. But what Don is looking for is a more philosophical answer, which he would have found with Anna. This goes to Richard’s comment about not wanting to be rigid because it makes him old. Which goes back to “For Those Who Think Young,” the episode in where Don sends Anna the book “Meditations in an Emergency.” Don send Anna the book of poetry because he feels she will like it, showing how Don converses with Anna on a philosophical level. Also, “Meditations in an Emergency” was written by Frank O’Hara as in Scarlett O’Hara. The poem Don reads is “Mayakovsky.”

    “Now I am quietly waiting for
    the catastrophe of my personality
    to seem beautiful again,
    and interesting, and modern.

    The country is grey and
    brown and white in trees,
    snows and skies of laughter
    always diminishing, less funny
    not just darker, not just grey.

    It may be the coldest day of
    the year, what does he think of
    that? I mean, what do I? And if I do,
    perhaps I am myself again.”

    The stanza

    “Now I am quietly waiting for
    the catastrophe of my personality
    to seem beautiful again,
    and interesting, and modern. ”

    could refer to how Don has just finished a catastrophe (divorce) and is waiting to reinvent himself again.

    And the stanza

    “It may be the coldest day of
    the year, what does he think of
    that? I mean, what do I? And if I do,
    perhaps I am myself again.”

    reminds me of Basketwriter B. Cooper’s wonderful post on how Don may be himself again, meaning Dick Whitman.

    The actual poem “Meditations in an Emergency” begins with

    “Am I to become profligate as if I were a blonde? Or religious as if I were French? ”

    The episode begins with a blonde. And French is mentioned numerously in the episode (Joan’s French Toast, the French chateau, Richard wanting to take Joan to a French restaurant).

    Perhaps the saddest lack of Anna’s counsel is Don not heeding her advice.

    Anna Draper: Then you can change.
    Don Draper/Dick Whitman: People don’t change.
    Anna Draper: I think she stands for wisdom. Once you live, you learn things.

    Don hasn’t learned so he hasn’t changed, and he’s back to being divorced and selling his house.

  53. The episode shows a big difference in the language between generations. The culture and language of the younger generation is much coarser. Matthus and Sally both drop f bombs and there was “asshole” and numerous “shits”. Contrast that to Richard telling Joan he acted like a “heel”. Also that he could have been a “cad” and slept with her before he told her he couldn’t deal with her having a child. Richard’s words sounded so strange and “dated” especially in a episode with so much profanity. Don even sort of defends Matthus saying “it’s not like they never heard the word”. The change in the way we talk was also a big part of the cultural shift from the 1950s to 1970 and very different from the early seasons of the show.

  54. […] Deb mentioned in her recap of Mad Men’s The Forecast that Joan’s holding on to her tiny old apartment and relying on her mother and an NYU student for […]

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