Do you know what a new tie means? Pete (Vincent Kartheiser) randomly gets lucky with the wife of the dude he sits on the train with every day on the way to work. Alexis Bledel plays the wife Beth who has definitely matured through her Gilmore Girls days, but still has that never-been-touched innocence that really freaks me out when we see her and Pete together. Do they just make each other look like they’re twelve? It’s the weirdest coupling. Who’s casting this?!
I’m guessing Beth went for Pete out of spite. I mean, you might as well cheat on your cheating husband when a stranger on a train knows more about his whereabouts than you do. But of course Pete wants more than a one-hit-wonder and is going out of his way to see this girl again, if that involves tricking her husband to invite him over for dinner. Can it get any more awkward? But one thing is for sure, the girls are definitely wearing the pants this season. As Pete says, “Why do they get to decide what’s going to happen?” They just do.
Speaking of girls, there’s some beef with Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) and Megan (Jessica Pare). Megan creeped out of the office saying she had a dinner with Don (Jon Hamm) but then Don calls the office later that night asking for her. I wish she did something more scandalous than sneaking out to an off-broadway audition, but we learn that Megan really isn’t happy working at the office, or I guess advertising in general. She tells Don she wants to quit and get back into acting. She tells him, “I felt better failing in that audition than I did succeeding at Heinz.” How can you argue with that?
Peggy takes over with the CoolWhip skit and can’t remember the slogan, “Just taste it.” Clearly Don is hurting without Megan around, especially after her beaming success. But he went from waiting in bed for her to coming home to her cooking dinner barefoot. What would he rather have? Looks like Megan might not be as surprising as she appeared. Joan (Christina Hendricks) reminds us that Betty was a model that Don picked up at a casting. In that case, it looks like whatever Megan does, she’ll ultimately lose in this relationship. Except for Don’s ridiculous obsession for her at the moment. But we don’t know how long that’s going to last.
Megan’s (Jessica Pare) already proving herself to be a very magnetic little vixen, but she’s somehow making a statement in the office regardless of all the attention Don (Jon Hamm) keeps hogging. She saves the Heinz deal over dinner by throwing in her pitch on a human canon-ball. But of course, it’s a classic Mad Men thing to do to get the parents involved when revealing more about a character. Megan’s definitely a papa’s boy and knows how to make a man crumble by over-stepping all female competition (including her own mother).
Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) has her own special dinner to attend to with her Brooklyn hubby Abe. Joan (Christina Hendricks) suggests that this especially insistent dinner must be a proposal, saying ” Men don’t take the time to end things.” Abe asks to move in with her, and I can’t tell if Peggy’s happy or not about it. It definitely works with her ‘I want to be a man’ issue, but is she ready to give away everything that comes with being a woman? She loses the kid, now she loses the ring and the dress. If two people are serious enough to move in together, why not just jump the ship and get hitched? Joan thinks it’s brave, Peggy’s mom thinks it’s a sin. It’s not only Heinz beans that don’t change. “He will use you for practice until he decides to get married.” Holla if you’ve been the one before ‘the one.’
Now that Roger (John Slattery) has Jane (Peyton List) off his back it’s like he’s a new man. Of course he’s going for Megan’s disgusting mom that won’t stop flirting with every man in sight. But I can’t help but melt at his pick-up lines. My favorite is this: “I’d buy you a drink, but I think they’re still free.” And what did Sally (Kiernan Shipka) see behind not-so-closed doors at the gala? Maybe a Shirley Temple isn’t strong enough for what this girl’s getting into.
“It’s over” should have been the title of today’s episode. Peggy (Elisabeth Moth) gets kicked off of the Heinz project for getting dramatically emotional in front of a pitch when left alone in the board room. I guess Don Draper (Jon Hamm) has an even bigger influence in the office than he thinks. But how can you blame him when he’s so busy fawning over Megan (Jessica Pare.)
Roger Sterling (John Slattery) tries a stab at LSD with his wife Jane (Peyton List) and the two realize they’ve fallen out of love. She says, “I knew we were going somewhere, and I didn’t want it to be here.” Too bad you can’t take back the words you say, no matter what you were on last night. I’m super excited for this break-up because I’m still hopeful Roger and Joan (Christina Hendricks) will finally tie the knot! Who’s got their fingers crossed with me?
On another note, it looks like Don and Megan might finally be falling off the ‘newly weds’ high. They run out of work to catch a weekend getaway and Don decides where they go, where they stay, what they eat, down to what dessert they’re having. Megan can’t hide her frustration and does the one thing Don can’t stand — embarrass him in public.
It’s actually kind of hilarious how often she does this. Remember the birthday party? Anyway, she makes such a huge deal out of this that Don literally drives away and leaves her at the bed and breakfast! She finds her own way home and Don freaks out for the next seven hours, realizing how much he can’t bear losing her. But how much is this incredible passion putting a dent in his professional life? Bert Cooper (Robert Morse) couldn’t have said it better, “You’ve been on love-leave.”
Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) doesn’t only have to fight with Roger Sterling (John Slattery) for respect over his accounts. Lane Pryce (Jared Harris) enters the battlefield with Edwin Baker of Jaguar cars. Of course we never see Pryce get involved beyond financials, so watching him schmooze with a potential BFF is pretty painful. The big boys take over the account and take the Englishman in love with America to a ‘party’ that involves young girls with chewing gum. I’m glad I’m in the 21st Century because clearly the guys didn’t really groom so much more than their face back in the day.
Speaking of faces, Lane kicked the crap out of Pete in the office. How is this even allowed? I guess it’s because everyone wanted to do that, from Roger, Don, Ken and even Joan (Christina Hendricks). Oh, and what the hell was Lane thinking when he kissed Joan? As if things weren’t awkward enough after he called a fight at a partners meeting.
I don’t know what’s going on with Pete, but he’s miserable as hell. He slept with a whore and tried to hit on a teenager in driving school. Yet his wife Trudy (Alison Brie) somehow got Don Draper (Jon Hamm) to attend a get-together for the first time without it having to be some huge occasion, like a wedding. Even Don admits to Trudy, “It’s too bad your husband can’t close a deal like this.”
And what’s all this talk about robots and a dystopia from Ken Cosgrove (Aaron Staton)? Last week we saw some delirious dream where Don finally grew some morals about casual sex and now Pete’s miserable in his own amazing life and can’t stop hating Don for his decent nature regardless of how ruthless he is at work. I’m a little upset I didn’t get to see any action with the leading ladies, but I guess we’re still trying to figure out what ‘the man’ means right now.
Oh, what a tease. Joan’s (Christina Hendricks) husband Greg (Sam Page) comes back from Vietnam only to tell us he’ll be gone for another year. Of course, he volunteered to go back knowing he’s got a family and Joan is not having it. I don’t blame her — she didn’t plan to be a military wife. She has no control over her mother, her job and now her husband. What’s going on with Big Red? I didn’t expect them to break up this quickly. At least give me a few more episodes with Sam Page!
On another note, Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) definitely knows how to hold her own at the office. When Roger (John Slattery) comes to her to write a corporate plan for Mohawk in spite of Pete (Vincent Kartheiser), she hustles $400 out of him. But it doesn’t look like she’s getting much out of it. After buddying up with the new receptionist, she reveals some thoughts about ‘acting like a man’ at work. “I tried, but I don’t know if I have it in me. I don’t know if I want to.”
It looks like the new copywriter Michael Ginsberg (Ben Feldman) is doing anything but the Mohawk project, and killing it. He’s dealing with Don (Jon Hamm) in a completely contemporary way that even Don can’t figure out. Maybe he’s just naive, but it looks like this guy’s going far with his disregard for authority.
Also, we’re finally getting back to some classic Don Draper psychoanalysis. He’s caught with an ex-booty call Andrea in the elevator with Megan (Jessica Pare). He’s deliriously sick and imagines having an affair with Andrea and choking her to death saying, “You won’t ruin this.” But he imagined it, so he could be the same old Don, with his notorious appetite for casual sex. Who knows?
OMG Betty (January Jones) is fat. Like can’t fit in her already huge dress kind of fat. It doesn’t help that she’s eating a second helping of ice cream. But she might even have a tumor? Looks like the wives in the 70s aren’t as desperate and are definitely better fed. But the new Mrs. Draper can’t really pair up when handling a double date for Heinz with Don (Jon Hamm). Don and Harry (Rich Sommer) join forces to get The Rolling Stones for their next project. They creep into a concert and stand out like sore thumbs. Obviously nothing good comes out of it, except Harry wets his tongue over some teenagers.
Peggy gets assigned to grab a new copywriter for the Mohawk account. While shopping for talent she interviews a crazy erratic die-hard Jewish writer named Michael Ginsberg. She totally offends him by talking about Don Draper and what the biz is like and has no idea how rude he’s being. Well, sort of. He said something like, “I insulted you because I’m honest and I apologized because I’m brave.” Roger forces her to hire him, and says something about needing Jewish writers. He also noted that they smell like pee, don’t submit to authority, and some other stuff that sort of appear true.
After the whole Rolling Stones ordeal, Don doesn’t want to meet Megan’s young and worry-free friends while he’s stressing about Betty’s health and the status of his company. The office hires the quirky writer after he plugs in “the letter” Don wrote that time about cigarettes. Good play! But I really feel bad for Peggy. Not only does she have the laziest art director working with her, now she has this obnoxious copywriter who’s already getting in with the partners. As Roger said, she needs to grow a penis.
Speaking about dicks, Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) steals the show by toasting to the Mohawk account and took away Roger’s only chance at contributing something. He leaves off saying, “When is everything gonna get back to normal?” I’m hoping with Joan returns. Or with Megan leaves. Or both.