Sunday, September 7, 2008

Mad Men 2.7: Double Dons

We already know that Don Draper is really Dick Whitman, who took Draper's identity in the Korean War. Pete knows this, too, and so does Cooper. And, as we saw last season, Pete's attempt to blackmail Don about this fell flat - the inscrutable Cooper took it all in, and left Don and Pete still employed in his company.

The double life of Don continues, and sandwiches the story in Mad Men 2.7 tonight. About to buy a Cadillac in 1962, Don flashes back to the early 1950s, and his first appearance as Don Draper since the war - selling used cars. Fast forward to the end of 2.7, in which Bobbi's husband, comedian Jimmy, lets Betty know Don that has been schtupping his wife, and lets Don know that he doesn't appreciate it, not one bit. The episode ends with another uncomfortable scene in the car between Don and Betty.

Meanwhile, still in the arena of double lives, Ken has caught Salvatore's eye, and in another scene of surface relationships hiding true identities Salvatore and his wife have Ken over for dinner on Sunday, to talk about Ken's latest story (he sold one to Atlantic last year - everyone in the office was jealous, as was I). Salvatore's wife picks up something about his special interest in Ken and lack of interest in her, but their marriage may well last longer than Don and Betty's. (Good to see Aaron Staton as Ken and Bryan Batt as Salvatore figure a little more prominently in an episode.)

And last but not least in the sandwich is Don's new secretary Jane Siegel - the peak of 1962 secretarial beauty. Joan wouldn't like her for that reason alone, but Jane gives Joan the perfect reason to fire her, when she breaks into Cooper's office with the boys to look at his abstract painting. Will her firing hold up? What do you think - this is Sterling Cooper we're talking about, Jane (well played by Peyton List - great name for the times) looks too good to be fired....

No movies in the episode this week, but I think I did walk by a 1962 Cadillac a lot like Don's when I was a kid in the Bronx back then...

See also: Mad Men Returns with a Xerox and a Call Girl ... 2.2: The Advertising Devil and the Deep Blue Sea ... 2.3 Double-Barreled Power ... 2.4: Betty and Don's Son ... 2.5: Best Montage Since Hitchcock ... 2.6: Jackie, Marilyn, and Liberty Valance ... 2.8: Did Don Get What He Deserved? ... 2.9: Don and Roger

And listen to my fabulous 20-minute interview last Fall with Rich Sommer (Harry Crane) at Light On Light Through

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