Monday, April 21, 2014

Mad Men 7.2: Flowers and the Hung-Up Phone

A really fine Mad Men 7.2 tonight, with all sorts of funny and sage moments, spread out over at least three story lines.

I guess the funniest was Pete talking on the phone to Roger, after Roger had hung up the phone.  This perfectly typifies the story of Pete's life, in the firm and out, making his points, playing the game with sincerity, often to have his words fall on deaf or closed ears.

Back in New York - the Pete thread was half in California, half in New York - we have a brilliant vignette of flowers, assumptions, racism, and their consequences.   Shirley's fiance leaves flowers for her - it's Valentine's Day - which Peggy wrongly thinks were left for her from afar by Ted.   This also has been the story of Peggy's life at the firm.  Always being cut short from what she may or may not want, smart as can be yet misunderstanding crucial things.  The error is understandable - Shirley is Peggy's receptionist - but it sets in motion an unpredictable, hilarious, and in the end profound chain of consequences.

When Shirley finally tells Peggy the truth, she directs her fury at Shirley for not telling her sooner, and wants her out of her secretary desk.   Dawn has already gotten marching orders - actually given to Joan, who must enforce them, as office manager - by the boring guy who's in Don's office, and who doesn't want Dawn doing Don's business on his (the boring guy's) time.   Joan has put Dawn in the front of the office as the receptionist people see when they first come in the office, and moved the receptionist who was previously there to the boring guy's (ok, Lou's) office.   But Bert doesn't want an African-American woman to be in the front of the office (Dawn and Shirley are both African-American).  He tells Joan to get her out of there.

What does Joan do?   The solution is given to her when Jim suggests that she move upstairs and work just as an account executive, and find someone else to be office manager.  In an ingenious, superb stroke, Joan makes Dawn the new office manager - a nice promotion.   It's unclear where Shirley will be - maybe Joan's secretary - but Joan has really excelled in doing the right thing in spite of the bigotry and pettiness of the office.

And, for dessert, we get one of the best sequences in years between Don and Sally, in which Don, for once in his life, is entirely truthful with Sally, and even manages to fake her out - to use that great 1960s expression - about pretending to be plotting not to pay the restaurant bill.

Just the kind of Mad Men worth waiting a year to see.

See also Mad Men 7.1: Vignettes and Playboy

And see also Mad Men 6.1-2: The Lighter and the Twist ... Mad Men 6.3: Good Company ... Mad Men 6.4: McLuhan, Heinz, and Don's Imagination ... Mad Men 6.5: MLK ... Mad Men 6.6: Good News Comes in a Chevy ...  Mad Men 6.7: Merger and Margarine ... Mad Men 6.8: Dr. Feelgood and Grandma Ida ... Mad Men 6.9: Don and Betty ... Mad Men 6.10: Medium Cool ... Mad Men 6.11: Hand in the Cookie Jar and Guy de Maupassant ... Mad Men 6.12: Rosemary's Baby, Dick Cheney, and Sunkist ... Mad Men Season 6 Finale: Beyond California

And see also Why "You Only Live Twice" for Mad Men Season 5 Finale ... Mad Men Season Five Finale

And see also Mad Men Season 5 Debut: It's Don's Party  ... Mad Men 5.3: Heinz Is On My Side ... Mad Men 5.4: Volunteer, Dream, Trust ... Mad Men 5.5: Ben Hargrove ... Mad Men 5.6: LSD Orange ... Mad Men 5.7: People of High Degree ... Mad Men 5.8: Mad Man and Gilmore Girl ...Mad Men 5.9: Don's Creativity  ... Mad Men 5.10: "The Negron Complex" ... Mad Men 5.11: Prostitution and Power ... Mad Men 5.12: Exit Lane

And from Season 4: Mad Men 4.1: Chicken Kiev, Lethal Interview, Ham Fight ... 4.2: "Good Time, Bad Time?" "Yes." ... 4.3: Both Coasts ... 4.4: "The following program contains brief nudity ..." 4.5: Fake Out and Neurosis ... 4.6: Emmys, Clio, Blackout, Flashback  ... 4.7: 'No Credits on Commercials' ... 4.8: A Tale of Two Women ... 4.9: "Business of Sadists and Masochists" ...4.10: Grim Tidings ... 4.11: "Look at that Punim" ... 4.12: No Smoking!  ... Mad Men Season 4 Finale: Don and -

And from Season 3Mad Men Back for 3 and 3.2: Carvel, Penn Station, and Diet Soda and 3.3: Gibbon, Blackface, and Eliot and 3.4: Caned Seats and a Multiple Choice about Sal's Patio Furniture and 3.5: Admiral TV, MLK, and a Baby Boy and 3.6: A Saving John Deere and 3.7: Brutal Edges ... August Flights in 3.8 ... Unlucky Strikes and To the Moon Don in 3.9 ... 3.10: The Faintest Ink, The Strongest Television ... Don's Day of Reckoning in Mad Men 3.11 ... Mad Men 3.12: The End of the World in Mad Men ... Mad Men Season 3 Finale: The End of the World

And from Season TwoMad 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 ... 2.7: Double Dons... 2.8: Did Don Get What He Deserved? ... 2.9: Don and Roger ... 2.10: Between Ray Bradbury and Telstar ... 2.11: Welcome to the Hotel California ... 2.12 The Day the Earth Stood Still on Mad Men ... 2.13 Saving the Best for Last on Mad Men

And from Season OneMad Men Debuts on AMC: Cigarette Companies and Nixon ... Mad Men 2: Smoke and Television ... Mad Men 3: Hot 1960 Kiss ... Mad Men 4 and 5: Double Mad Men ...Mad Men 6: The Medium is the Message! ... Mad Men 7: Revenge of the Mollusk ... Mad Men 8: Weed, Twist, Hobo ... Mad Man 9: Betty Grace Kelly ... Mad men 10: Life, Death, and Politics ...Mad Men 11: Heat! ... Mad Men 12: Admirable Don ... Mad 13: Double-Endings, Lascaux, and Holes

  

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