Episode 1.06: Babylon


May 8 (May 8 is Mother’s Day. Day #2 and 3 are the week of May 15 because of the Yankee’s locker break-in, and because Eichmann was arrested “last week”).

Sunday May 8 (Mother’s Day)
Don prepares breakfast in bed for Betty for Mother’s Day. He steps on a wheeled toy and falls down the stairs. He flashes back to falling down the stairs the day Adam was born.

Later that night, the Drapers come home from a Mother’s Day celebration with sleeping kids and a red balloon in their arms. In bed that night, Don reads The Best of Everything and is fascinated. They discuss Joan Crawford, and another allusion to Salvatore’s gayness is made (he “couldn’t stop talking about” Crawford). Betty talks about her fear of growing old. They cuddle. She reminisces about her mother, but Don resists expressions of “melancholy.” Don is suspicious of Dr. Wayne, who is allowing Betty the room to mourn, and Betty defends him.
Betty tells Don she desires him constantly. They make love.

Week of May 15
Sterling Cooper
Don meets with representatives of Olympic Cruise Lines and the Israeli Ministry of Tourism, hoping to promote Israel as a resort destination. They hand Don a copy of Exodus to read.

Roger’s wife and daughter, Mona and Margaret, visit the office. Mona wants to get Margaret a fashionable haircut and wants advice from the women in the office. Joan makes an appointment.

A bedroom
In bed, Roger complains about Margaret’s aimlessness. It’s then revealed he’s talking to Joan, who is getting dressed: They’re in a hotel. Roger wants Joan to have her own place. He says he’s “tired of all the sneaking around.” But Joan says he loves it, and she is happy with her roommate, Carol. Rogers suggests replacing Carol with a bird. They make love again.

Sterling Cooper
Don studies Holocaust pictures, then meets with Paul, Sal, and Pete. They discuss Israel, still stuck. Pete discusses adventure travel, they all ignore him. After the guys leave, Don calls Rachel. She agrees to meet him for lunch the next day. Then he gazes at a picture of a beautiful Israeli woman.

In bed that night, Don reads Exodus and Betty tells Don that the first boy she kissed was Jewish. She tells the story and then kisses Don ardently, but he puts her off.

The following day
Sterling Cooper
Ken and Sal meet with Freddie (whose name is given later) about the Belle Jolie lipstick campaign. They’re stumped and Freddie suggests a test group. Freddie is having a screwdriver for breakfast.

At lunchtime, Joan brings all the office women to test Belle Jolie lipsticks, while the men watch through one-way glass. The men ogle and joke. They notice that Peggy isn’t participating.

The Pierre
The back of Don’s head waits for Rachel. She arrives, and he asks her about Judaism. He holds her hand, and for a moment she allows it. She says the first place Jews were exiled was Babylon, and they discuss Utopia.

Sterling Cooper
Joan ends the lipstick test. Peggy gets the discarded tissues so that the marketers can figure out which lipsticks were used, and says, “Here’s your basket of kisses.” Freddie thinks someone must have told her that phrase, assuming she isn’t clever enough to have come up with it herself. Freddie ends up impressed by Peggy’s insight. Joan interprets Peggy as “complaining” and Freddie’s interest as sexual.

Don sits in his office and cancels his afternoon appointments. Freddie and Sal come in and Freddie tells Don about Peggy. They agree she has abilities they hadn’t guessed at and stare at her through the door.

Rachel calls her sister and obliquely discusses Don.

Sterling Cooper
Peggy is filing and Joan comes up. Joan tells Peggy that “Mr. Rumsen” (Freddie, it seems) wants her to write Belle Jolie copy. There is no raise and it is on her own time, in addition to her other duties. Peggy is grateful.

Greenwich Village
Don visits Midge and immediately grabs her and starts making out intensely. There’s a knock at the door. Midge’s beatnik friend Roy comes in and kisses her. She introduces the men. Roy wants to go to The Gaslight to hear their friend Ian; Midge invites Don to join them.

A hotel
Roger has brought Joan a bird. She makes him cover the cage before they make love.

Greenwich Village
At The Gaslight, Roy and Don spar verbally, Roy criticizing Don for “perpetuating the lie.” Midge suggests it’s a pissing match. A beatnik reads the society page, then another recites a poem, then their friend Ian’s group sings “Babylon.”

A series of quick cuts:
Don’s face.
Rachel at her store, laying out ties.
Betty putting lipstick on Sally.
Don again.
Joan and Roger getting dressed and leaving the hotel.
When the song ends, there are just street sounds. During the credits, you hear a car, presumably a cab for Joan or Roger, pull up, and the door being opened and closed.


  3 Responses to “Episode 1.06: Babylon”

  1. Noticed a goof. Don's rustling through the Poughkeepsie Journal in the beginning as he's about to take breakfast up. Poughkeepsie is a good 40 miles north of Ossining. The Drapers probably would have had The Citizen Register as their local paper delivered at that time. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Journal_News

  2. Great observation, Jackie. (The Journal News is my local paper.)

    Because Ossining is a pretty small town, I imagine a Yonkers or White Plains paper might be more appealing (I suspect The Citizen Register was a weekly, as so many of these smaller papers are/were). Tarrytown shares a border with Ossining, and it had a daily. Poughkeepsie is definitely too far.

  3. Mine too, as I'm a Westchesterite. I was also at the Jacob Burns event, and one of those annoyed by Weiner's ignorance of Hudson valley geography. Heh.