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episode 4: the rejected


Last week Joan survived being stitched up her husband and Don and Lane hit the town. This week we get an episode with Pete.

Epsidoe 4: The Rejected

An edict from Roger and Lane puts Pete in a personal dilemma.

One can only imagine what is going to happen this week with Pete. 

Comments

( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
amycurl
Aug. 16th, 2010 12:38 am (UTC)
Maybe it will involve a bus? *hopes* ;)
marymary
Aug. 16th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC)
I think I liked that one better than any of the others this season. Did you guys notice that Slattery directed this one?

I loved the conference call at the top of the episode. The back and forth between Don and Roger. Man, do I need someone to listen in on my boring conference calls and say, "He said 'Mary.'" :-)

I also liked the writing and acting throughout the episode. For example:
Faye: "We're talking about girls 18 to 25. Can I grab a few from around here?"
Don: "Yeah, help yourself."

Also,
Peggy: "Did you know Malcolm X was shot last Sunday?"
Joey: "Yes, Peggy."
Ha ha, the delivery on that line. Stop being so cute, Matt Long.

I also LOVED that Joyce said to Megan, "Thanks, Sweetheart." That made me LOL.

Probably the funniest thing all episode, though, was that Joan assigned Miss Blankenship as Don's new secretary. Problem solved. :D

Hey any Life fans, in case it's bugging you, "Megan" is played by the Russian girl who was the dead Russian girl's friend in "The Fallen Woman."
marymary
Aug. 16th, 2010 03:22 am (UTC)
I liked that they treated the Peggy/Pete baby thing in a subtle and complex way. That was well done. And it was so much fun to see Peggy with the...beatnicks? Hipsters? What year is it anyway? That scene at the "event" was hilarious and fun. I realize I miss the young people! I miss Midge and her friends talking about Sticking It To The Man! I miss Smitty and the other one! I'm happy we have Joey, though, in case I haven't mentioned that. ;-D

Though I really hated Peggy for being so self-centered with Allison. I think it gets to part of the reason I've never really liked Peggy. I sympathize with her and I want her to succeed, but she has this streak that I don't like.

I feel like...she has a very strong tendency to self-preservation. That's seeing it in a positive light, I guess, (especially if you're the child she gave away and has no contact with). She was really sweet and generous with Allison, until Allison got the wrong idea (that Don had taken advantage of both of them). Then she had NO room for Allison, it was all about defending herself against that implication. And she didn't just shut it down, she was harsh with Allison and unsympathetic ("She's fine.") when she got back to the room. I get why this is a sensitive subject for her, but I'd like to see her rise to the occasion and correct Allison in a nicer way.

Edited at 2010-08-16 03:33 am (UTC)
gatsbyfan
Aug. 16th, 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
Did you guys notice that Slattery directed this one?
I did, but I had already read about it so I knew we would probably see less Roger since he was directing.

I loved the conference call at the top of the episode. The back and forth between Don and Roger. Man, do I need someone to listen in on my boring conference calls and say, "He said 'Mary.'" :-)
That was fantastic. It once again illustrates how much power Lee has over SCDP. They need more clients so they can kick that guy to the curb. I also loved when Don walked over to the bar and said why is this empty and Allison's frank reply "because you drank it all".

Stop being so cute, Matt Long.
I think he's incapable of that. (I wouldn't mind him working in my office all the time.)

Probably the funniest thing all episode, though, was that Joan assigned Miss Blankenship as Don's new secretary. Problem solved. :D
Yes. Don's secretary is starting to feel like the secretaries on Murphy Brown... they don't stick. But I'm not sure Mrs. B is going to last either. She solves one problem but I'm not sure how effective she is going to be when she can't relay messages properly.
gatsbyfan
Aug. 16th, 2010 01:53 pm (UTC)
Also one of the funniest things to me... When Peggy is in the lobby to meet the Joyce, Bert Cooper is sitting on the couch reading a magazine sans shoes, off of course. I don't know why but it just cracked me up that he was just sitting there.

I also LOVED that Joyce said to Megan, "Thanks, Sweetheart." That made me LOL.
Yes. Same here. Joyce is an interesting character. I'm wondering what she's going to bring out in Peggy. She seems to have captivated her already. Perhaps she'll get Peggy to dump that loser that is "renting her vagina". (Loved that line.)

I think I have more tolerance for Peggy, Mary. While I think she was a bit mean after Allison got the wrong idea about her relationship with Don, I could see where she's coming. It probably caught Peggy off guard. I could see where Peggy might be thinking that if Allison thinks that, what does everyone else think?

Loved Allison's exit. Who hasn't wanted to throw something at Don...
marymary
Aug. 16th, 2010 02:59 pm (UTC)
Loved Allison's exit. Who hasn't wanted to throw something at Don?

Me too! I liked her line about Don turning on the charm and then pulling it back. That is exactly the problem, as Allison tries to get her bearings after the one night stand.

And I like how direct she was with him when she quit. It was also another great illustration of the miscommunication between the sexes. She said they couldn't pretend it hadn't happened, and offered that they had both made a mistake, and Don responded well at first. With that first line, I felt like she was almost meeting him halfway, and he understood her words. She wasn't acting like a victim, but a willing participant who was confused about the landscape post-sex.

But then Don offered to sign any recommendation letter Allison wrote. He thought he was doing something nice! He thought he was offering her the best possible recommendation letter. But what he was doing was offering NO personal investment in this parting. (And, as a man, he assumes Allison is capable of writing a glowing letter about herself, which she isn't.)

Someone should write a piece on just that aspect of MM alone, because they do a great job of it. Also in this episode, Freddy sits behind the glass and concludes, "See? They're all just crying about getting married." He's not wholly wrong (especially as Peggy is sitting next to him, playing with an engagement ring she doesn't really want), but he's missing the point entirely.

Perhaps she'll get Peggy to dump that loser that is "renting her vagina". (Loved that line.)

Yeah, I agree. Didn't you all spot that new guy the second he stepped into frame? I thought, "Oh yeah, here's the guy for Peggy."

It once again illustrates how much power Lee has over SCDP.

Yeah, and...I think it was one of the recent MM articles I read that pointed out that cigarette advertising was going to be banned in a year or two.

Because I'm in a professional services firm, like SCDP, having a client that's over half your billigs is such a glaring issue that I'm suprised they aren't more focused on solving that. This was my thought when they told Pete to drop Clearasil for Ponds. Wrong direction! Maybe Pete's Vicks win will be a really good thing.
tomfoolery815
Aug. 16th, 2010 06:01 pm (UTC)
Joan assigned Miss Blankenship as Don's new secretary. Problem solved. :D
The moment we saw Miss Blankenship, I saw Joan's fingerprints all over the assignment. :)

But I'm not sure Mrs. B is going to last either. She solves one problem but I'm not sure how effective she is going to be when she can't relay messages properly.
I can see him having to go to Joan in a couple weeks, being forced to ask for somebody new.

The back and forth between Don and Roger.
That was so much fun! The look Don gave Roger when Roger forced him back into it.

I did notice that Slattery directed, and I couldn't help but think the actors-doing-fun-things mirth was his doing. I loved seeing Peggy's head peering through the window. As if she were Kilroy. ;-)

tomfoolery815
Aug. 16th, 2010 06:12 pm (UTC)
Also,
Peggy: "Did you know Malcolm X was shot last Sunday?"
Joey: "Yes, Peggy."
Ha ha, the delivery on that line.

The rest of it was even better. :)

Peggy: "Do you know who that is?"
Joey: "Do you read the stuff between the ads, Peggy?"

Such a great shot there near the end: Peggy's cool new, young friends, all giggly to look admiringly at a beauty like Megan*. Then Peggy's going off with the kids and Pete is with the old guys in the grey flannel suits.

I thought, "Oh yeah, here's the guy for Peggy."
He's the guy you two were casting for her a couple episodes ago. :-) A much better fit for her personality, and for who she is as an outlier career woman.

Loved her comment about the film in re: her Catholicism: "I'm not supposed to (like it)."

I think she was a bit mean after Allison got the wrong idea about her relationship with Don, I could see where she's coming. It probably caught Peggy off guard. I could see where Peggy might be thinking that if Allison thinks that, what does everyone else think?
Yeah, I liked Peggy a lot better in that moment before she turned on Allison. But that's her immaturity, her limited poker face. Joan would've been able to dismiss Allison's presumption without getting upset. I agree that Peggy did, as Gatzy suggests, probably think "Oh God, everybody thinks that!"


*Weiner must have really liked Jack and Bobby. Besides Matt Long as Joey, Megan is Jessica Pare, who played John Slattery's daughter on J&B. Although during the episode I was thinking that that was Liv Tyler. Which, in retrospect, doesn't make much sense from a casting standpoint. :)
tomfoolery815
Aug. 16th, 2010 06:27 pm (UTC)
But then Don offered to sign any recommendation letter Allison wrote. He thought he was doing something nice! He thought he was offering her the best possible recommendation letter. But what he was doing was offering NO personal investment in this parting.
Excellent point, Mary. That's what Allison was looking for, just as she was hoping there was something personal in the Christmas card inscription. He thinks he's being kind and generous, but he's clueless as to what she really wants.

With that first line, I felt like she was almost meeting him halfway, and he understood her words. She wasn't acting like a victim, but a willing participant who was confused about the landscape post-sex.
But she does see herself as a victim, IMO. She's still adhering to the 1950s conventional-wisdom attitudes toward sex, that proper women aren't supposed to do it with men who don't love them. As she said to Peggy, he's a drunk who doesn't remember what he did. I think she thinks he doesn't remember that they had sex, that she put out and it meant absolutely nothing.

Throw in his cluelessness about the recommendation letter, and Don learns that he's added to the list of women who think he's not a good person.

One of the themes this season, obviously, is that there's change all around Don, and he's slowly getting left behind. That's a genius scene there at the end, as Don takes note of the old, old couple and the pears. "We'll talk about it inside."
marymary
Aug. 16th, 2010 08:12 pm (UTC)
But she does see herself as a victim, IMO

Yeah, I think we actually agree. I do think she feels like a victim; when I said she was "meeting him halfway" I meant that she was making an effort not to act like a victim. She sort of rose to the occasion and saw things from a reasonable and generous perspective. She wasn't going with her lesser nature, saying "You abused me!" she was saying "We both made a mistake." I saw that as Allison taking a step from where she was (feeling sorry for herself) toward Don's position.

And yes, I totally agree with you about the 60s mentality. I think a couple eps ago I said she might be trying to get around that, in her fictional head, by inventing feelings between them where there really were none. So, confronted with Don being all businesslike, she can't pretend anymore and that must be pretty unbearable.
tomfoolery815
Aug. 16th, 2010 11:03 pm (UTC)
when I said she was "meeting him halfway" I meant that she was making an effort not to act like a victim.
Yes. I should have said that when she was talking to Peggy she still felt like a victim, but that by the time she talked to Don she was willing to concede -- in her mind at the least -- that he'd offered her no indication that he was interested in some kind of relationship with her. Which I believe was a point you made from the outset. :-)

So, confronted with Don being all businesslike, she can't pretend anymore and that must be pretty unbearable.
Yeah, evidently.

But then, this comes back to the point we've been collectively making about, in this instance, Don breaking his own (unspoken) rule about sex with subordinates. Or his (again, unspoken) rule to only have (non-prostitution) sex with women were mutual attraction is understood. Midge, Rachel, Bobbie, Joy and Abigail were all varying degrees of attracted to him before Don made a sex-initiating move.

Allison's an adult, and Don didn't force her to do anything. But it sounds like we all hold Don 51 percent (or more) responsible because he used to know better. Am I reading you guys correctly on this?
marymary
Aug. 17th, 2010 12:01 am (UTC)
Yeah, I hadn't thought about it before, Tom, but I agree that Don has always been involved with very willing participants, who are coming from a place of strength and who are either pursuing him or in a comfortable place from which to accept his advances. (Midge was outside his circle of influence; Rachel was his client, for god's sake; Suzanne (?) was a little vulnerable, but definitely met him half way; Bobbie had plenty of power and also her hand down his pants every chance she got.)

All of which leads me to agree with you that he's more responsible this time. I think I'd hold Don more than 51% accountable. Only because he's her boss and a power relationship like theirs is no place for sex.

I mean (even at that time) within those boundaries there are definitely different kinds of situations. Like Jane and Roger or Joan and Roger. Not advisable, but Jane and Joan seemed very happy to be involved with Roger and not at all afraid for their jobs or their hearts. I have had...experiences with people in power relationships with me, and there was nothing abusive about them.

I just think that, in this case, Allison was NOT in a strong position relative to Don. IMO, he shouldn't have laid a finger on her. Even doing someone else's secretary would have been better than Allison.

Plus...I would think a responsible man of that era would want to be very careful with a woman's "virtue." A good guy would know the difference between a Midge and an Allison -- in terms of the stakes for her and act accordingly.

Having said all that, in no way am I suggesting that I saw Don force himself on Allison. She stopped, decided she wanted it, and went forward. She knew what might happen, what she might feel like, but she wanted him anyway. I get that. And she does seem to have moments where she accepts half of the responsibility for what happened.
tomfoolery815
Aug. 17th, 2010 05:58 am (UTC)
Suzanne (?) was a little vulnerable, but definitely met him half way
Hmmm ... I don't recall her.

I think I'd hold Don more than 51% accountable. Only because he's her boss and a power relationship like theirs is no place for sex.
Yes. This.

Like Jane and Roger or Joan and Roger. Not advisable, but Jane and Joan seemed very happy to be involved with Roger and not at all afraid for their jobs or their hearts.
Right. In both of Roger's instances of involvement with SC employees, there seemed to be no question that the women were as interested as he was. We're presented the Roger/Joan relationship as in progress for a while, but -- and perhaps this is because Joan knows Roger is married -- Joan knows she doesn't have anything to worry about.

Even doing someone else's secretary would have been better than Allison.
Srsly.

Plus...I would think a responsible man of that era would want to be very careful with a woman's "virtue." A good guy would know the difference between a Midge and an Allison -- in terms of the stakes for her and act accordingly.
Absolutely. Allison is concerned with issues of "virtue." Midge left that behind a long time ago, because she's ahead of her time in terms of owning her sexuality and defining it any damn way she pleases.

Having said all that, in no way am I suggesting that I saw Don force himself on Allison.
I know you're not. :-) She was a 100 percent willing participant in their sexual activity; she could've pulled away from Don if she wanted to. We seem to agree that Allison's problems start when she thinks taking off her panties (well, that seemed to be about all she removed) means anything more to Don than getting laid.
tomfoolery815
Aug. 17th, 2010 06:10 am (UTC)
I liked that they treated the Peggy/Pete baby thing in a subtle and complex way. That was well done.
Me too, Mary. I like the ... gravity of Peggy and Pete's relationship. "The past is never dead. It's not even past."

It's why Pete's eyes betray him, if only to us, when he says news of impending fatherhood doesn't feel as he expected and Trudy naively asks "How would you know how to feel?"

It's why Peggy makes a point of formally congratulating Pete ... then returns to her office and goes all headdesk. (Hey, is that a TWW shout-out? ;-)
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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