Episode 5.10: Christmas Waltz

 

Tuesday, December 6, 1966
Pryce residence
In the wee hours of the morning, Lane’s solicitor calls; he was able to get charges against Lane dropped but Lane must pay £2900 ($8000) in back taxes by Thursday, which Lane says he can’t possibly do. When Rebecca wakes up and asks what’s going on Lane shouts at her.

Wednesday, December 7
SCDP
Scarlett tells Harry that Paul has again called him—Harry has been ducking him but agrees to meet for coffee rather than have him stop by the office.

Lane comes in, asking Harry for first quarter projections; things look good but not solid.

Chemical Bank
Lane meets with Walt, his banker. Walk agrees to extend SCDP’s credit by $50,000 and Lane asks him to put it through today. Lane leaves the building, breathing a deep sigh.

SCDP
Pete wants a quick meeting with Don and Roger at the men’s room, which he refers to as “Cooper’s office.” Pete says that Jaguar has come back. Edwin was fired after throwing up in the lap of the head of the Dealers Association. Pete has been calling Jaguar periodically, assuming that Edwin was going to burn out. Now SCDP is in the running to bid, along with a number of other agencies.

Don isn’t excited. Pete criticizes Don’s lack of hours at work, and Don retorts that it isn’t real and isn’t going to happen. Roger is drunk because it’s Pearl Harbor Day.

Krishna Consciousness Center
Harry meets Paul at the Krishna Consciousness Center and is weirded out. He keeps trying to leave but Paul and his friend, Mother Lakshmi, keep him there for the chanting. Harry appears to believe Paul is just there for Lakshmi, but Paul is ostentatiously blissful during chanting.

SCDP
There’s a partner’s meeting in the conference room, minus Roger, who is too drunk to attend. Lane announces a $50,000 surplus (a lie; he doesn’t mention the credit extension). He says everyone should get a Christmas bonus. He has engineered this to get the money he needs.

Don wants the bonuses to wait for the Christmas party. Peter announces Jaguar but but no one is excited, which upsets him. Pete also wants to wait on bonuses because the money is needed to finance the Jaguar spec work. Lane is angry but cannot get the partners to agree to immediate bonuses.

In the office area, Roger is shooting off about Pearl Harbor to Scarlett. Joan comes out to quiet him. They speak in Joan’s office, and we learn he gives her money for the baby which she always returns. She wants him to stop.

Krishna Consciousness Center
Harry is really into the chanting. When it ends, he wants to go back to the office but Lakshmi suggests Paul take Harry to lunch. They talk in the cab.

Paul wants to leave the movement, but only with Lakshmi, whom he loves. Harry thinks he’s being hit up for money but Paul says that’s not it.

The Pocket Theatre
Megan and Don are at American Hurrah, a play highly critical of advertising.

Draper apartment
Home from the play, Don and Megan argue.

A diner
Harry talks about how much he loves his baby and has another on the way. Paul gives Harry a spec script for Star Trek. He wants Harry to pass the script to NBC execs.  Paul is miserable at the order and wants out.

SCDP
It’s late night. Lane comes in; the only one there. He forges Don’s signature, using a light table to trace it onto a check, and gives himself a bonus.

Thursday, December 8
SCDP
Harry asks Peggy about Paul and shows her the script. Harry really wants to help, he feels blessed in life, but the script is bad.

Pete and Don discuss Jaguar.

Lane speaks with his solicitor and tells him it’s all handled.

Joan is summoned to reception: A guest needs a signature. The “guest” is a process server. She loses her temper at the receptionist and throws the airplane statue, and Don physically pulls her out of the room. He refuses to believe she’s “fine,” gives her his coat and takes her out.

Jaguar Dealership
Don and Joan pretend to be married potential buyers. Joan is great at playing along. Don gives the salesman a check for more than the price of the car in order to let Don and Joan take it out without the salesman along.

A hotel bar
Don has driven them to a bar. She reveals that she and Greg are divorcing. Don reminisces about how scared he was of Joan when he first knew her at Sterling Cooper.

SCDP
Lakshmi arrives to see Harry. He’s clearly excited to see her but immediately suspects a shakedown. However, when she comes on to him he responds and soon they’re having sex on his desk.

A hotel bar
Don and Joan are drinking more. He asks her to dance, but she says no. They reminisce about past exploits and he quotes Bobbi Barrett to her. They’re knowing and sweet. They discuss marriage in the abstract, knowing they’re talking about each other. She says he’s happy and so the Jaguar has no appeal for him. He leaves her at the bar to flirt if she wants.

Don drives the Jag furiously back to the dealer; all of a sudden he’s not happy.

SCDP
After sex, Lakshmi reveals that Harry disgusts her and she only seduced him as a trade; to keep Harry away from Paul and keep Paul in the movement. When Harry is bemused by this, she slaps him across the face.

Draper apartment
Megan is sullenly waiting at the dinner table when Don comes in drunk. She demands to know where he was and throws a plate against the wall. At first he thinks it’s sex play, but she refuses. She orders him to sit down and eat dinner with her. He sits.

Pryce residence
Rebecca wants to see her parents over Christmas. Lane tells her he has to stay for Jaguar and that he doesn’t want to spend Christmas alone; she’s happy to be by his side, not knowing it’s really about the money.

Friday, December 9
SCDP
Roger brings flowers to Joan; they were delivered at reception for her. Roger is jealous that someone has sent her flowers; they’re from Don and make her smile.

A diner
Harry lies baldly, telling Paul that a reader at NBC thinks the script shows amazing talent but that, because of lawsuits, they can’t use it and Paul must never call. Having lied to give Paul hope, Harry then gives Paul an envelope with $500 and a ticket to Los Angeles, provided he leave right away, without Lakshmi. Paul hugs him goodbye with a sad face; he’ll do it but he’s sorrowful.

SCDP
The partners gather before an announcement to the staff. Pete first tells them that Mohawk is suspending their advertising because their machinists are going on strike. Since this affects the firm’s bottom line, they decide the partners must defer their own bonuses until January. Lane has nothing he can say.

Lane makes two announcements to the entire staff: First that Mohawk is suspending advertising. Then that they’re getting bonuses, but he says it in a way they don’t understand, so Roger tells them, and they applaud.

Then Pete announces the Jaguar pitch is going to happen, and again, no one responds. Then Don decides to say something. He gives a go-getter speech and everyone applauds. He summons creative to his office.

Lane looks off in despair.

The closing song plays: Christmas Waltz, sung by Nellie McKay

Back to Season 5 Episode List

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