Mad Style: Field Trip

Posted on April 30, 2014

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (1)

A nice little visual pun and callback to get us started. Remember in the season opener when Don got picked up at the airport by Megan and was asked to sit in the passenger seat? Note how many times in the L.A. scenes Don’s need to take a cab (which is a very NYC and not very LA thing to do) is referenced. No matter where he is, he’s sitting in the passenger seat; this time, being driven around a cinematic L.A. instead of the real L.A. he’s trying to avoid. Sitting in the dark, looking out at the light.

And the show is definitely making a point about the darkness in New York vs. the sunniness of L.A.:

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (3)
The framing is almost exactly mirror images of each other, which only serves to heighten the contrast even more. It’s not just that the L.A. scenes are shot in a hazy yellow light (with lots and lots of natural wood, as opposed to the hard edges and unnatural materials of the Draper apartment or SC&P); it’s that people in L.A. tend to be represented by such bright colors, like Bonnie Whiteside’s bright yellow dress of last week and Megan’s eye-popping getup this week.

We want that gorgeous desk. And it’s funny how his outfit is almost 2014-trendy, in a GQ editorial kind of way. It also tends to foreshadow Megan’s outfit, tying them together in southern California shades of yellow and orange.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (8)

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (9)

Color, color, color. Sunlight, but no happiness. In fact,  as the scene progresses and Megan’s mood changes, the costume goes from having a groovy feel to having a manic feel. The colors are too searing, the print is too much, the top is sloppily buttoned. And Don acts as a counterpoint; a colorless blank slate, trying desperately to appear calm and in control. Instead, he comes off frustratingly detached from her emotional state. It’s all there in the clothes.

Tom’s grandmother crocheted that exact skirt and vest for his sisters in the seventies, as well as for her other granddaughters. They all have school pictures from roughly the same year, wearing the same outfit in different colors of acrylic yarn. Now show of hands: how many people can say the same thing? Because this look was ALL OVER the early to mid-seventies.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (15)

This is a callback to the many, many, many, many scenes in their marriage where their power differential is manifested in their clothing. He’s in a suit, she’s in loungewear or a nightgown. While it might seem odd to cast Don in the “powerful” role in an episode like this one, from Megan’s perspective, she’s been at the mercy of his whims for their entire marriage. The only card she has to play is “stay away.”

Let’s check in on the second former Mrs. Draper before we head into all the office drama.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO-(6B)

We’re pretty sure an “OH!” escaped our lips at the sight of this tableau. What a perfect shot of moneyed suburban housewifery in 1969. If Betty has a signature color, it’s blue, which can be used to denote her icy personality or to underline her role as a mother. Here, it’s kinda doing both. She was judging Francine from head to toe for lacking in the fulfillment of her maternal duties. Of course Francine did a delicious passive-aggressive turn by deliberately calling her “Betty Draper” in response to Betty’s condescending, “Maybe I’m old-fashioned.” That was Francine’s way of saying, “Shyeah. ‘old fashioned.’ Remind me again how many husbands you’ve had, bitch?”

Janie has used strong collars or lapels for the career women in the cast. Now Francine’s sporting them, having joined their ranks. And it’s of course no coincidence that she’s wearing pants in this scene. In fact, she’s wearing a suit, which only takes her that much further away from Betty’s highly feminine look. The salmon-and-white color scheme makes a nice counterpoint to Betty’s blue-and-white dress.

Note the cottage cheese and canteloupe on Francine’s side and the completely untouched salad on Betty’s side. They ordered coffee cake at the end of the scene.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (10)

I’ll show that Francine who’s a real mother around here.

Betty always reacts to things instead of taking action independently. And she’s highly influenced by the people around her; especially the women. She dyed her hair and gained weight in a mad dash to turn herself into Henry’s mother, for instance. Here, she’s impulsively signing up to chaperone so that she can feel good about her choices …

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (17)

But she wore a wide-lapeled, perfectly coordinated salmon-and-white suit while doing it. Sure, it’s different from Francine’s look – much more traditionally feminine, for one – but a big reason why this day failed was because Betty went into it with a self-serving agenda: not to be a good mother, but to feel like a good mother and to show other people she was one. The nagging ghost of Francine was all over this one.

And look at how much Betty stands out on the farm, with all the primary colors in other people’s clothes. Not to mention that she’s almost hilariously overdressed. She does look spectacular, though. If they gave out Emmys for bitchface, we always say January Jones would have a shelf full of them.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (24)

Madonna and Child. As we said, Betty is often dressed in blue when the story has to do with the relationship she has with her children. This scene calls back pretty strongly to this one, which was in many ways a total reversal of sentiment. In that earlier scene, Betty was secretly thrilled that her daughter still needed her and preferred her over her stepmother. Here, she’s resigned to the idea that all her children will hate her in the end.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (4)

Janie will often dress Stan and Ginsberg in similar or matching tones, partially to make Peggy stand out more in their scenes. But we think there’s a bit more going on here than just pairing them up to make her stand out. Ever since SCDP opened its doors, their creative department has always been far more colorfully dressed than the rest of this office. Now, the dominant colors seem to be beige and gray:

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (23)

There’s virtually no color on the people in that room at all. When your creative department is dressed like they’re depressed, you know your ad agency’s in trouble. Of course Peggy stood out in her teal above, just as Don stands out in his (highly uncharacteristic) deep brown with orange accents here; they’re the ones who want the work to be good, above all else. He’s taken to sneaking his work in with Freddie Rumsen’s name on it and she’s been utterly miserable with the mediocrity and lack of creativity Lou seems to encourage.

Don was colorless when dealing with his wife but a focal point of color when sitting among his creative team.

In other news:

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (11)Is there any question that these are two people with different outlooks who don’t like each other much? You don’t even need dialogue here.

Of course Jim Cutler would have an animal skin rug.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (13)

Can we take a moment to point out how cute David James Elliott looks in period drag? It takes a special man to rock a mint green dress shirt with a dark green jacket. And like Megan’s agent’s outfit, you could do just a few slight tweaks in proportion and hue and it would be ready for a menswear runway show right now – although unlike the ’60s – which were an extreme outlier decade in fashion history – such styles are unlikely to trickle down to middle-aged businessmen. When the ’60s cultural revolution exploded, it exploded in all directions, which the show has been depicting bit by bit over the past few seasons. Look at what Roger’s become, for instance. Acid-dropping and orgies at the Algonquin Hotel.

We suppose the green could be signaling money, since they made a salary offer in this scene, and there was some question as to whether the woman was a hooker. But honestly, we can’t take it that far. He’s dressed that way because he’s simply a much showier, groovier guy than Don and works for a much hipper agency.

As for the woman in the scene, there seems to be a lot of confusion as to who she is and what she meant. We think there was meant to be. First off, she’s not Anna Draper’s niece, although both actresses resemble each other quite strongly. Second, Roger didn’t send her. When Don went to Roger’s place, it was clear he wasn’t expected. To our way of thinking, either the guys from Wells Rich Greene were lying and she was, in fact, a call girl they hired, or Don’s giving off good mojo now that he’s trying to put things in order and she’s just another lady who found it irresistible.

The point is, everyone in this scene wanted Don and talked openly about how much they wanted Don. Contrast that with his later scenes in the office where everyone talked openly about how they didn’t want Don around. Why would Don choose the latter over the former?

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (14)

Like Sally and Don last week, Roger and Don are dressed in matching shades to indicate their reconciliation. She’s dressed like a touring production of “Godspell.”

But there will be no more reconciliation for Don this week, unfortunately.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (20)

Peggy wore this outfit the day that CGC and SCDP merged; the day that Don got Ted publicly drunk in the office and she got her first inkling that her two bosses weren’t going to play nice with each other.  It makes perfect sense for her to wear it here. She is, as we noted in our Monday review, now protecting the status quo that he created and she’s full of resentments regarding his behavior toward Ted.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (2)
Janie will often signal a character’s rise up the career ladder by subtly upscaling their clothing almost immediately and putting it in a few embellishments here and there (like brooches, pleats and oversized buttons) to show that it cost more. She did this with Peggy after she became a copywriter, and again after she became copy chief. She also did it to Joan when she went from office manager to partner and now to account rep (she’s wearing the most expensive ensembles we’ve ever seen her in this season).  Dawn got two new outfits this episode and they both look a little more expensive than her usual wear. She’s worn a lot of gingham in the past, but between this look and last week’s she seems to be transitioning into a Peggy-like plaid motif in her clothing. The tailoring and colors of this dress give it a slightly more business-like feel than the church-going clothes she tended to favor in the past.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (21)

Her hair looks a little more “done” than usual too. Janie also did this with Peggy as she rose up the ladder.

That’s not cheap or home sewn. She smartly invested in some attire that separates her slightly from the secretarial pool. There’s a seriousness to this look, which made it work really well as a way to point out what an ass Don is for still treating her like a secretary. It’s obvious by looking at her that she’s not one.

It’s funny, because we’ve watched both Peggy and Joan struggle their way up the corporate ladder and make several changes in their personal attire, but it took Dawn to discover what would pretty much become the executive lady uniform for the next 15 years or so. Although eventually most secretaries will wind up adopting it as well. Half the cast of “9 to 5″ will be dressed exactly like this when the movie comes out eleven years from now. Peggy never nailed the executive look because she’s not someone who knows how to express herself through her clothing (i.e., a bad dresser) and Joan is probably incapable of not dressing for her looks primarily, which she admitted to Don was something her mother drilled into her.

Which isn’t to say that Joan dresses inappropriately; just that this is pretty showy for an account representative at a breakfast meeting:

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (22)

Note the coordinated coat and gloves. This is the third expensive-looking coat we’ve seen on Joan since the season started. She’s not hurting for money (showy jewelry like that pendant is one way Janie tends to depict that). There’s a reason she wants to protect the new status quo so fiercely.

We gasped when we saw this dress; not just because she looks spectacular but because it’s a look loaded with meaning. If you’ve read previous Mad Style entries, you might remember that Joan has quite the history with red roses, both in her story and in her clothing. Red roses became a symbol of her marriage; first when they were featured prominently in the scenes leading up to her rape (and then poignantly left forgotten on her desk). Later they were used as props (and weapons) in makeup scenes and fight scenes with her husband. She wore red roses on a black background in the scene where it became clear his career wasn’t going well and in the episode where she found out he re-upped for a tour of Vietnam and wound up kicking him out.

So what’s the deal here? We admit, it took us a while to sort of recalibrate our settings on this one, since this has nothing to do with her marriage, but here’s what we think: Her marriage is long behind her; well and truly over. She’s moved on. We kinda thought that’s why her yellow roses were featured so prominently as she moved into her new office.  But she is once again dealing with a square-jawed, handsome, good-on-paper alpha male who’s secretly a mess of insecurities and who makes rash decisions that deeply affect the people around him without ever asking for their input. Don is the office version of her husband and she’s already put up with that shit once in her life. She’s not about to let another handsome, privileged man screw up her life because of his own issues. Hence the red rose dress, which is now a symbol not just of her husband, but of the ways in which the men around her have disappointed her and how she no longer puts up with it anymore. This costume actually underlines and helps to explain her anger in her scenes.

 

Mad-Men-S7-E3-Mad-Style-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO (25)
Joan’s eye-popping dress kind of throws the balance off a little here, but notice how much Don’s suit stands out against the other male partners; his brown a discordant note in all that business-like grey and navy blue.  He’s the turd in their toilet bowl.

Okay, that was gross. Allow us to make it up to you with this:

scooby gang

All they need is a van and a Great Dane with a speech impediment to complete the picture.

 

 

 

[Stills: tomandlorenzo.com - Photo Credit: Michael Yarish/AMC]

    • Cyprienne Zed

      F5, F5, F5 — YES!! Insightful as always, well done, TLo!

      • http://redheadedwolf.wordpress.com/ Laura Renee

        I do wonder about how the line graph of traffic spikes on Wednesday mornings, as we refresh in anticipation.

        • Lady Bug

          Guilty as charged! Seriously, Mad Style is my favorite MM review, and this is from someone who NEVER paid attention to style & fashion, until now.

          • http://redheadedwolf.wordpress.com/ Laura Renee

            Same! I found TLo through Mad Style, then when the show wasn’t airing anymore and I felt deprived, I slowly started exploring their other posts. It’s been a fantastic education.

    • http://instagram.com/gioioio gioioio

      Megan’s silhouette reminds me of the Zou Bisou Bisou dress.. This time it’s Zou Bisou Divorce..

      Don is dressed to match the agency’s new logo, the suit is the same cut but in brown instead of black with gold and orange accents. I love it.

      • http://thejoyfulfox.blogspot.com/ Laura

        “Don is dressed to match the agency’s new logo” – great catch, I didn’t think of that!

        • sweetlilvoice

          It’s only due to this blog that I noticed that. Also, Cutler’s tie does not have orange which does not tie him into the new company. Has he ever worn orange? Somehow I doubt it with all this ghost suits.

        • P M

          See – I watch this on my computer, so I miss details like that.

      • Glammie

        Don’s more on top of it than we realized–out of the gray and into the brown. He’s morphing with the times after all.

        • Chris

          He’s moving towards Ted’s side of the color spectrum. It’s not mustard and gold but it’s warming up from grey.

        • Nancy Aronson

          Honestly, not at all offended by the turd comment. More: surprised. My first reaction to the brown suit was that Don was allowing his corporate armor to soften and to embrace his identity as a creative. In the lyrics of Master Hendrix, “to wave his freak flag high, high.” Perhaps he’s letting go of his shit in the psychological sense of processing his feelings? Hah!

      • NeenaJ

        Loved the brown on Don. On a side note, I’m pretty sure my Dad had that exact get up – tie and all.

    • decormaven

      Gotta love that Cutler wears sock garters. What a mix he is: buttoned down on the outside, bizarro on the inside. As always, good work, TLo!

      • sojourneryouth

        It’s pretty perfect, as the buttoned down ones are usually the closet freaks.

      • Alloy Jane

        Aren’t sock garters part of the uniform? Is that unusual? I’m used to very formal settings and military settings, and those usually involve many accessories.

        • Fay Dearing

          Yeah sock garters are very much of the time period still. Especially for older men. There’s nothing particularly sexy about them. My Grandfather wore them until he got diabetes and had to be more careful with his legs and he did it as a regular thing so his socks wouldn’t slide down and wrinkle or have to fold them down

      • P M

        Which scene is that?

        • decormaven

          You catch a glimpse of the sock garters in the scene with Harry and Cutler in Cutler’s office. Right after Harry asks about the call from the WSJ, the camera cuts to Cutler. You see them there. It’s been such a long time since I’ve seen them.

    • KayeBlue

      Oh thank god- it’s been raining for three days but there’s Mad Style!

      I’ll probably be in the extreme minority here, but I *hated* Joan’s dress. Maybe because I didn’t exist until long after this time period, but to me it looks like a silly teen dress on a grown woman. Joan’s makeup seemed decided understated, almost washed-out. I took it as a nod to how difficult the transition from glamorous woman to powerful exec (because from what I understand, almost no women were both in 1969) would be. She acts like she has power, and she technically does, but… she looks out of place. To my eyes, Dawn looks far more professional.

      FRANCINE! I LOVE YOU! Please, fashion gods, bring back solid-color pant suits in pinks and pastels. Or at least let me buy Peggy’s smart little green dress in time for summer

      P.S. I was so hoping TLo would dig up a screenshot of Betty and Francine’s “infidelity insanity” scene as contrast, but I’ll try to find it myself.

      • Travelgrrl

        Joan’s dress style was very au courant for the time. Lots of baby doll looks.

        Though I never thought I’d see her in a Peter Pan collar, the kickin’ boots offset that, I guess.

        • http://armchairauthor.wordpress.com/ LesYeuxHiboux

          Couldn’t agree more about the Peter Pan collar. She was Joan channeling Peggy, not the dowdiness but the career-minded outlook. The collar and cuffs were high contrast with her ongoing second-skin-dress-with-roses motif underneath.

        • not_Bridget

          I gasped when Joan showed up wearing roses. Yes, they probably signal her divorce being long, long over. Is there really nothing happening in her romantic life? Sometimes the show keeps secrets for a while…

          Last week, some wondered about Shirley’s minidress & boots. At least as that episode began, Joan would have been the one to tell a secretary her outfit was inappropriate. Written dress codes weren’t common; most people knew the unwritten ones–but a stray comment might be necessary from time to time; years ago, Joan told Jane to button up her blouse.

          Joan’s outfit shows she probably thought Shirley looked OK–not as career minded as Dawn but fashionable. To me, the rosy dress & boots mean Joan is not going to be an early adapter of the Tootsie look. Her skirt is short for her but hardly a mini. Joan knows what suits her–just as she’s chosen subtler makeup. Dawn is dressing seriously but sharply. Peggy is hopelessly dowdy. Francine’s polyester pant suit made my blood run cold.

          For men, the unwritten dress code was simple: suits, with the occasional creative exception. Don has always worn suits to work–taking off the jacket when things got serious. Didn’t the unidentified junior male creatives look like they’d worn suits but were in shirtsleeves for “work”? Stan & Ginsberg are the scruffy duo who actually still have a creative spark. (Dear Departed Sal always wore a suit; he’d remove the jacket for doing his art but usually wore a nice vest–never scruffy.) Which leaves Lou, who ought to wear a suit to befit his age & position. Nope, he wears a schlubby cardigan–to show he has no creative spark..

          • Travelgrrl

            It’s crazy, but plenty of people who were wearing the baby doll lolita mini skirts in 1969 were wearing the power suits and ridiculous little floppy bow ties (often accessorized by a pair of gigantic white sneakers on the way to work) a decade later. With possibly a maxi dress in between.

          • P M

            Um, why would Francine’s suit make your blood run cold?

            • not_Bridget

              It screamed “polyester pant suit” to me.

              Who said “those who forget the fashion mistakes of the past are doomed to repeat them?” Diana Vreeland?

            • Kathryn Sanderson

              As a kid in the 70s, I ended up wearing my fair share of polyester. I’m still allergic to the stuff, even though it has come a long way from the bright-colored double knits of the 70s. I avoid it whenever possible. The salmon color isn’t too bad, but the white trim also screams nasty 70s to me.

            • P M

              Hee. We unfortunately can’t prevent the march of fashion into the dark days of polyester.

            • Kathryn Sanderson

              But we can make sure it never returns! (At least not in its 70s form…eek!)

          • MartyBellerMask

            But okay, here’s what I think about Joan wearing Shirley’s look. Another point to consider. There are always so many ways to interpret! Shirley is the hot new thing. Young, fashionable, pretty. I have been thinking so far this season that Joan realizes she is not those things anymore (she is pretty of course, but not the “in” look). She may be trying to hang on to her youth by copying that look. Whether or not she succeeded is up to interpretation.

      • tatiana.larina

        I’ve noticed Joan is wearing noticeably less make-up or at least more subtle. Can somebody knowledgeable tell me whether it was a general change in trends or just her trying to look more professional?

        • KayeBlue

          We were debating it back and forth on another comment thread- in close-ups, it looks like she’s wearing the same amount of make up, but she does look terribly washed out. My hypothesis is that the stark white collar makes her pink-toned skin look ruddy. Another poster said that Christina Hendricks has just lost so much weight, her face looks very thin.

        • Munchkn

          Women did wear more muted or less colorful makeup from the mid/late 60s until sometime in the 70s. Eye makeup might have been more extreme than lips or cheeks though.

      • Nancy Aronson

        Is it possible that I wore Francine’s dress in 7th grade?
        Also, interesting that it looked similar to the waitress uniform.

      • Jan Cull Simonson

        I don’t like to use the word “hate”, but I hated Joan’s dress also. Thanks! I’m not the only one. As a child I noticed patterns and fashion. I “hated” most of it. Especially the bold ugly print patterns. They looked cheap, unthoughtful and well… who were these men designing our ugly dresses anyway? But of course I did have the daisy pin and earrings.

    • Qitkat

      Megan’s outfit is one of the most spot-on clothing references Janey Bryant has achieved. My crocheted outfit was a mini-dress, not a skirt and vest. It was exactly in that goldenrod yellow, and I loved it beyond measure, bought in 1969. I wore it with an emerald green suede coat (you couldn’t miss me in a crowd!), which I still own, though it will never fit me again, because it is a reminder of those carefree, single days when I was just as sunny and open to life. And those prints were everywhere too. Well done!
      Now to finish reading the post :)

      • judybrowni

        The horror of the macrame vest!

        Hated them in the 70s, and on their recent return.

        And that macrame skirt! Ugh, which makes Megan’s ass look a mile wide (how in the world?)

        The minute I saw Joan in that Peter Pan color, I thought “the angry roses dress!”

        • Qitkat

          Well I looked darn cute in mine! I also think it was one of the few times I was at the beginning of what became quite a trend. I may even have gotten it in 1968. Didn’t realize it would become a “thing.”
          Technically they were usually crocheted not macramé. But there were plenty of macramé plant hangers.
          I’m not too surprised there are those who hated them :)

          • jelley

            My grandma crocheted me a gold (acrylic!) vest in 1969. I was thrilled with it, and, like you, Qitkat, was at the beginning of a trend for the first (and last time for me) in my life! Wore mine with a navy skirt and knee socks.

        • Travelgrrl

          There was plenty of macrame around in furnishings in a few years, but that is a crocheted vest and skirt, as was the style.

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          It’s crocheted, not macramé. Those are two different (but related) crafts.

        • Nancy Aronson

          Oh, the horror! (smile)

      • NDC_IPCentral

        Mom made me a macrame vest in red that I wore for several, SEVERAL years. Fond memories, but as enduring fashion – nopers. I don’t remember seeing macrame skirts back in the Mitten State in ’69 and thereafter. I can be very grateful for that.

        • Travelgrrl

          Crocheted, not macrame. The skirt is obviously store bought, as it’s lined, and has a matching vest. The vest many could and did make at home.

          • Qitkat

            My dress was lined, I would never have dreamed of getting it otherwise.

            • Travelgrrl

              Yes, my Mom was a great sewer and could do anything but line a suit jacket to sew a swimsuit. But I highly doubt Megan is spending her California nights doing so, hence my comment that HERS was store bought, rather then the home made crochet vests T & L mentioned.

          • NDC_IPCentral

            You’re quite right – the method is crocheting, and I was realizing inchoately as I wrote it that something was wrong with my comment. I got diverted by others’ “macrame” comments.

          • caroline

            Crocheted for sure, but who’s saying made at home can’t be lined? Several of the pieces my mother had growing up (made by her mother and grandmother) might as well have come from a store, they were so well-done. And they were lined.

            • Aurumgirl

              Yes, all my friends had hand crocheted skirts and vests–and one friend had the vest and pants!–and they were all lined.
              I’m sure Megan’s was store bought because she never seemed like the crochet-ing kind to me.

            • Travelgrrl

              Yes, good sewers can line something, but my point was that MEGAN’S was obviously store bought, as I doubt she was handi-crafting on her off nights in the LA canyons. The vest, which was commonly made by everyone who could wield a crochet hook, was much more common than the lined, crocheted skirt which would have been harder for many to make. My Mom was quite a seamstress and my clothes were always super finished, too.

              Good thing I only sew costumes. Lining is hard!

          • Kathryn Sanderson

            I think it’s store bought not because it’s lined, but because Megan has never shown the slightest interest or aptitude for sewing or crochet, plus she has enough money to buy just about any outfit she wants.

            • Travelgrrl

              The point I was trying to make! Megan is not sewing and crocheting out there in LA. Goodness, I never meant ordinary people couldn’t line a skirt!

              The crocheted vest was far more ubiquitous than her lined, crocheted skirt though. I don’t remember seeing one like it at the time, and EVERYONE who was anyone in middle school had the crocheted vest. (Usually a pullover)

          • Jacqueline Wessel

            I learned to crochet just so I could make myself a vest or two back in the day.

      • Travelgrrl

        My sister in law crocheted me a vest in sparkly purple yarn and a lurved it! Was in middle school at the time.

      • Ginger Thomas

        Yep — I had several vests, in colors that I got to choose, made by my grandmother. Wore them for several years. Wanted a crocheted bikini, but she and my mother wouldn’t go for that!

        • Ginger

          I actually know women (friends from Belize) that crochet bikinis to sell now. Their work is beautiful but I just can’t wrap my mind around wearing a crocheted bathing suit of any kind. It just seems as though there would be….chafing….

          • Glammie

            Such swimsuits are usually lined. I tend to be more worried about how much water is absorbed by yarn.

            • Munchkn

              There’s a story about Esther Williams wearing a woolen swimsuit in one of her pictures. It got so waterlogged and heavy that she was having trouble surfacing. She had to strip so that she wouldn’t drown.

      • http://www.GiftedCollector.com/ The Gifted Collector

        As I’ve mentioned before, Janie purchased two crocheted vests made by my Grandma, one red and one brown. There was also an orange pantsuit, but not the one Francine was wearing.

        I got all excited in the airplane scene as a woman walking down the aisle ahead of Don was wearing a coat with a matching dress that I sent to Janie. I was shocked when she didn’t buy it from me, but now I know why — she already owned it!

        I feel like we’re going to see something of mine soon.

        • Qitkat

          I must have missed, or forgotten you said that. How groovy!!

      • AJ

        Love the canary crocheted ensemble. Anyone know how to knot? https://www.etsy.com/listing/189369808/60s-crochet-vest-and-cap-patterns-mad?ref=related-0

        • Qitkat

          Crocheting is easy, although knitting seems to be more popular. Any yarn shop worth its salt can teach you how, for free usually. Knotting, or macrame is most often used for objects, like plant hangers, rather than clothing. Good luck, any of them are fun and satisfying in their own way.

    • sienna elm

      Now I`m going to have the Scooby Doo theme running through my head the rest of the day! :)

      • brandine

        Or you can be like me and replace the “Zou Bisou Bisou” with “Scooby Dooby Doo.”

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          Oh, noooooo!!! I already have it stuck in my head, and I just now read your post!

        • Alloy Jane

          Because I watch a lot of Scooby Doo, that is what happened when I watched the “Zou Bisou” episode. You have to throw in the “zoinks!” for maximum impact. And funny enough, we were watching Scooby Doo right before I first read this so it felt very appropriate. Though I wish I had made that connection when I saw the episode. It takes a real talent to notice the visual story while processing the written story. I can cotton on to the verbal and body language, but all the clues in styling just go right over my head.

      • Jacqueline Wessel

        That’s ok, I still have Jimi Hendrix’s “If 6 was 9″ still rolling around in my brain.

        • Nancy Aronson

          Such a great song. Thanks again, MW & Co.

    • Malia C.

      “All they need is a van and a Great Dane with a speech impediment to complete the picture.”

      Jesus, what a note to end on! Was seriously lucky I didn’t have a mouthful of whiskey or the laptop would be fried ;)

      • Ginger

        You’re drinking whiskey already? Girl…I want YOUR job!

        • Malia C.

          Hey,it’s (just barely) noon :)

          • Ginger

            Damn east-coasters. ;)

      • Beth

        I just about shot coffee out of my nose reading that line.

      • BKagainwiththesweatpants

        My guffaw scared the entire office.

        Peggy’s got to be Velma. Velma was the hard-working, less feminine member of the gang, not fun, femme, and daffy, like Daphne/Meredith, and would often unmask the “criminal” in the scene, this time Don. (I’m laughing, just imagining Jon Hamm saying, “And I would’ve gotten away with it, too, if it hadn’t been for you meddling kids!”)

        • snarkykitten

          Next episode, hijinks ensue when the ghost of Lane is seen terrorizing SC&P, only to be revealed to be…Cutler

          • MartyBellerMask

            Comment of the day!!!

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          So Stan is Shaggy (well, he’s pretty shaggy), which makes Ginsburg Fred. Hmmm….

          • 3hares

            Stan’s Fred. He’s the mother hen. Ginsberg’s Shaggy.

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              Totally agree. Stan is the mature responsible one. Ginsberg is the zany off the wall one.

            • Alloy Jane

              Not sure if you’re familiar with The Venture Bros, but they have a Scooby Doo episode that is a rib cracker. I can buy Ginsberg as the “teetering on the edge of insanity and hallucinating a talking dog” version of Shaggy they used.

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              I’m not a huge fan, but I have seen a few episdes, and that was one of them. As parodies go, it was close to perfection.

          • BKagainwiththesweatpants

            Based on clothing and beard alone, Stan is both Shaggy and Fred (Stan once, maybe more, wore a neck scarf, which I recall was huge for guys in ’68-’69–all the cool kids in my 5th and 6th grade classes wore one, knotted with a little metal ring). Ginsberg strikes me more as Scrappy Doo, which cuts me to the quick because I love Ginzo.

            • L’Anne

              Scrappy. Ugh. Couldn’t stand the show with Scrappy. Scooby Dumb, however, he was alright.

            • Alloy Jane

              Now THAT is an insult lol. Scrappy Doo was the worst. I remember always feeling so depressed whenever they aired those.

    • inchoate

      I noticed that Megan and Bobby’s teacher (the one Betty snarked about) both wear button-down blouses with no bra — in colours that coordinate. Pervasive 1969 trend or intentionally linking the characters?

      • judybrowni

        Pervasive trend, although the teacher is a little top heavy for it.

        • Munchkn

          Going braless was both hippie and feminist.

          Munchkn -an old hippie and feminist

      • MasterandServant

        Interestingly, my mom started teaching high school in 1972 in suburban NY…and was told that the department head ‘preferred women to wear skirts’. She did not wear pants to work until 1977!

        • Travelgrrl

          We HAD to wear skirts in school in the 60′s (students). At a public school!

          • Nancy Aronson

            My private school also had a dress code. In my First Grade class picture I’m wearing a pink velvet dress. With topsider sneaks.

          • altalinda

            Yup. And because the dresses / skirts were short, in grade school we all wore shorts under those dresses. The major dress code battle in the early 70s was to be able to wear jeans to school.

      • Kathryn Sanderson

        I find it hard to believe that a schoolteacher would go braless, even on a field trip, even in 1969. But…I started school in 1970 and didn’t notice that sort of thing at that age.

        • L’Anne

          Agreed. Especially with so much unbuttoned. That was quite a bit of internal side boob on that bus!

        • sojourneryouth

          I was a school teacher in my early career, and there is no way that would have flown, even with small boobs. Kids notice, and they talk, even before they really recognize breasts as sexual. It would have been a noticeable distraction that no teacher needs to deal with.

        • tallgirl1204

          Later on she was more buttoned up– I got the impression that the turbulence (?) on the bus knocked her around a bit and her blouse came farther open than she meant.

          • Nancy Aronson

            Still. It’s not like she was an instructor in an alternative school. She was teaching the children of rich Repubs. Doesn’t fit for me.

        • Nancy Aronson

          Me, too.

    • latina fey

      i just burst out laughing at the closing line. well done, gentlemen.

    • jennmarie19

      I just caught up on this episode last night, and the Betty storyline tore me up. I’m not being at all facetious when I say that part of the reason she’s always been so icy, cold and removed is that she’s -hungry-. If someone could put weight on that quickly, she’s not predisposed to be as thin as she is, and that’s likely meant a life-long weight struggle. Anorexia and disordered eating is also often tied to perfectionism and a rejection of maturation. Total lightbulb moment for me into Betty’s character. Just thinking about Bobby’s look at the dinner table makes me want to cry.

      • inchoate

        There was dialogue to that effect in season 1 or 2 — that Betty was a chubby child who got skinny as a teenager. With her mother constantly attacking her for her weight that probably didn’t just happen naturally.

        • KayeBlue

          “I went from Tadpolt to Pollywog that summer”. Poor Betty. She’s probably been starving herself since she got her period.

      • Gatto Nero

        She’s hungry in more ways than one.

      • KayeBlue

        That’s it, you win. Perfect.

        I truly do feel sympathy for Betty, who reminds me of one of my grandmothers. She did everything her world asked of her, but world that constrained her fell by the wayside, and she’s adrift. She wasn’t just never told to think for herself, she was specifically told *not* to think for herself.

        I’m sure this has been noted, but Gene is nearly 6 years old by now. He should be in kindergarten already, or at least entering first grade in the fall of ’69. Betty’s last vestige of being a mother of little children is about to expire, and I predict a major meltdown.

        • Three Dancing Matthews

          Exactly, exactly, exactly. I get so frustrated reading insightful recaps on other sites, with insightful comments on everything but Betty, who seems to get “What a bitch!” with the occasional “Why is she still on this show?” Betty’s not a nice person, or a good mother, or a good friend. I wouldn’t want to hang out with Betty or be related to her, but she’s a great character, and I think she adds so much to the show. Not every woman hit 1965 and magically turned into a liberated, go getting career woman. I love that Weiner et al show the lasting scars of being raised the way Betty was- told to be perfect and thin and pretty and compliant, to marry some nice man, to have kids, and to expect total happiness and fulfillment. It’s an important counterpoint to Peggy and Joan and Megan and Dawn.

          • ACKtually

            I 100% agree. I think Betty is actually one of the most compelling characters on the show. The only time Betty is satisfied, is when she has taken on a new persona- a model, a mistress, a new wife. And the only time we’ve seen her as happy is when she is traveling. Physically in a different location then her home.

            I feel like Betty is suffering from depression; in the clinical sense of the word. She is not happy, and pretending to be, because she has everything that is supposed to fulfill her. She is resentful but doesn’t have an avenue to express her dissatisfaction. She wants to be a good mom. She wants to be a good wife, I think she even wants to be a good person but Betty doesn’t know what it really means to be good unless she gets direct feedback. Betty is selfish and totally lacks self-awareness, but Betty does love her children and she did love Don, and her father. She is emotionally stunted, and I think she hates herself more than anyone could hate her.

            • Alice Teeple

              I think Betty also serves as a good reflection of how Peggy’s character is being handled. Peggy DID go against expectations of her – and she’s unhappy, too. Peggy shacked up but never married; she gave up her child; she substituted the traditional family life for a career. Peggy wants to be a good career woman, but she doesn’t know what it really means to be good unless SHE gets direct feedback. In “The Suitcase” she even confesses this out loud to Don. She loves her job, but in some ways she’s as emotionally stunted and entitled as Betty. She sees her long-sought Clio as the reward for her hard work; just as Betty sees her children as little more than rewards for her “work.” When Betty tried working, her husband ruined it for her by sabotaging her modeling gig. When Peggy tried having a domestic life, her boyfriend ruined it for her by making demands on her position (buying that apartment building). Neither the career woman nor the housewife with the adoring husband are happy.

            • MartyBellerMask

              Damn. This is why I love this blog. Hands down, BEST, MOST INSIGHTFUL, COMMENTARY ON THE INTERNET.

            • not_Bridget

              Don did not sabotage Betty’s modeling job. She was hired only because the agency wanted Don–but he never told her that. He turned down the job because he did not want it & she was fired. He was willing to let her continue to model–but she realized she’d be competing with all the younger girls.

            • Travelgrrl

              Too right!

            • Nancy Aronson

              I didn’t remember correctly. I thought Don told Betty that she was hired because they wanted Don.

            • Travelgrrl

              Don didn’t sabotage Betty’s modeling; the agency that hired her had ulterior motives that ended the job. It was never shown that Don didn’t want her to work.

              Back then, to NOT work, to have your husband meet your financial needs, was the ideal for many married women, so Betty was kind of caught between the “I want a career” of Peggy and the norm for upper class women, which was to stay at home.

            • Alice Teeple

              But he did sabotage her modeling job – maybe not on purpose, but passively, through his own decisions, the way he often screws things up. And he wasn’t thrilled about Betty working – remember, he initially argued with her. By turning McCann down later, he also denied Betty her career, which ultimately led to more unhappiness and resentment. You’re right in that most men wouldn’t want their women to work – my own grandmother was forced to quit her beloved nursing job in the 50s. But the reason she was given (and probably so many other women of the time) was this: the husband didn’t want competition from other men for his wife’s attention. Don drags everything along with him. Betty was told to her face at the shoot that she wasn’t quite the right look for the part, which in her mind would equate with “you are too old and no longer beautiful enough for this job.” That line at the end about not wanting to do it anymore was more about wiping the egg off her face for wanting to work again and bucking the status quo. This theme was revisited when Megan asked for the shoe commercial despite conflict of interest, and Don allowed her to do it.

            • 3hares

              I just can’t conflate “denying someone a career” with refusing to take a job you don’t want and changing your own career so that person can have one job. Don told her she could keep modeling if she wanted and she said no. She couldn’t have a career if she couldn’t handle the reality of it.

            • AnnaleighBelle

              I think this quote by Margaret Atwood really defines the source of Betty’s (and Peggy’s) ennui:

              “Up on a pedestal or down on your knees, it’s all a male fantasy: that you’re strong enough to take what they dish out, or else too weak to do anything about it. Even pretending you aren’t catering to male fantasies is a male fantasy: pretending you’re unseen, pretending you have a life of your own…. You are a woman with a man inside watching a woman. You are your own voyeur.”

              Of course both of them need direct feedback because that’s the only way a woman could know that she wants.

            • Nancy Aronson

              I’m going to see her tomorrow in zee flesh. My hero.

          • KayeBlue

            There’s been quite a lot of longstanding research that boredom and rote work actually does dull creative thinking, problem-solving, and emotional relation over time. Of course, lots of stay-at-home mothers volunteer, have hobbies, or are highly involved with their children (or combine it all into mommy-blogging today) which keeps their minds active and engaged. Remember when Francine tried to get her involved with the PTA? But if you were an upper-class woman who wasn’t terribly interested in children’s activities, there weren’t many socially-acceptable outlets. Betty would probably be considered a bit old to still be riding. She is quite literally mentally stunted.

            • EveEve

              ” But if you were an upper-class woman who wasn’t terribly interested in children’s activities, there weren’t many socially-acceptable outlets.” Well, that has not been my experience at all. Upper-class women, whether from families with historic wealth, or those who married or earned their way into that class, had (and have) many outlets beyond their children’s activities or careers. For instance, philanthropy, in all its myriad forms, was, and continues to be a rewarding and often highly intellectual “outlet” for upper class women who did not have paying jobs. The arts, music, literature, political causes, social causes, religious institutions, etc…all benefit from the efforts women who contribute their time, efforts, intellectual and organizational skills. This goes far beyond the Junior League and womens’ social club types of activities.

              Getting back to the character who is “Betty” – philanthropic work would certainly have been available to her had she wanted to pursue it. But her character is written as a self-involved bimbo who doesn’t care to stretch herself intellectually or philanthropically.

          • Kathy

            Very well-put and exactly how I feel about Betty. She’s awful but also a victim of her upbringing, like many of the characters.

          • Kat

            I think Betty is still on the show to contrast how much she doesn’t change as time moves on with how much Don is finally changing. His slow evolution is just so the opposite of Betty’s entire life. She’s still a stunted little girl.

            Am I the only one seeing light blue (on Betty and others) as status quo or old? She’s been wearing it and decorating with it since season one, but I’ve noticed it in other places this season where it contrasts with new and modern. Like in the scene where Roger and his daughter were at brunch at the Plaza, the rest of the room looked awash with pale blue while they popped in brighter colors. Her new philosophy/religion or whatever and Roger’s drugs and sex life did not fit in at the Plaza.

            Megan’s hot dress in the season premiere as she picked Don up at the airport – pale blue. Relationship status quo. Peggy’s light blue suit when she saw Don in the office – she’s upset that he’s disrupting the status quo. Etc.

            • Nancy Aronson

              On a Mad Style note: I’m so glad the guys posted the picture of Betty’s matching shoes/bag while dining with Francine. A-mazing. That bag was a thing of beauty. Icy, icy blue. And a perfect match with the pumps.

          • Kathryn Sanderson

            “Not every woman hit 1965 and magically turned into a liberated, go getting career woman.”
            So true! In fact, this describes most women, I think, and certainly housewives like Betty. But even Peggy, Joan, Megan and Dawn have a gradual evolution.

          • http://trufcreative.com/ monomatica

            I agree completely. Betty serves as a contrast to the other women who are working and trying to have a career or be a working mother. Betty is a mess and also people of that generation were not as open and emotionally available as we are today. She probably doesn’t love being a mom and just takes it out on the poor kids. And she also contrasts the other characters who are changing because clearly she isn’t. She’s stuck in the 50s and wants to stay there. I don’t get why other blogs and commenters diss her so much. I was excited to see her this week!

          • http://bidonica.wordpress.com/ Poggy

            “Betty’s not a nice person, or a good mother, or a good friend. I wouldn’t want to hang out with Betty or be related to her, but she’s a great character, and I think she adds so much to the show. Not every woman hit 1965 and magically turned into a liberated, go getting career woman.”

            My thought exactly – actually, a lot of the characters I love I would find pretty insufferable in real life, but as an audience we have the privilege of being at a safe distance from them and, at the same time, enough perspective to – ideally – also see their side of the question and sympathize all the same. Which in Betty’s case is that she’s been screwed up big time by the culture that shaped her worldview. There’s been a pretty on point post going around on tumblr on the last couple of days which pointed out how people tend to make excuses for a lot of bad shit because “that’s just how things were back then” (even in cases when there is no real “back then” like in Game of Thrones. But I won’t open that can of worms here), but Betty’s mentality is in big part as much a product of its time as the sexism, philandering and alcoholism of the male characters in the show, yet the latter has been met by a lot more indulgence. Really, I know people love “exceptional” characters who destroy the status quo, but the truth is, the majority just rolls with it or just doesn’t have the strength to fight it, which I think is Betty’s case. She knows she’s unhappy and unfulfilled, I’d argue she always did to an extent (“But then what? Just sit and smoke and let it go ‘til you’re in a box?”), but she can’t figure out how to break the circle.

          • Alloy Jane

            That’s because we live in a sexist, patriarchal society where women are expected to be perfect and anything less than perfection is punishable by ostracisation. And Betty being the quintessential American Blonde Barbie is held to even higher standards because she is the physical embodiment of everything society worships. She should be a goddess, but she isn’t. She is a deeply flawed, immature, troubled person and that offends people because it hits them in their subconscious.

            Don, on the other hand, is a giant dick (forgive the two-handed pun) but he gets excused because 1) He’s a man; 2) He’s supposed to be “complicated,” which if you ask me is just a euphemism for an asshole with no consideration for others; 3) He is given the opportunity to present positive aspects of his personality to the audience. Betty has never had that opportunity. There are allusions to a greater depth of character than “self-serving and immature” but never anything outright, and that causes people to react to her emotionally and personally.

            • http://stylingdutchman.blogspot.com/ annebeth

              i wish i could upvote this a thousand times. This is the way this show exposes contemorary sexism in its viewers.

        • SylviaFowler

          I personally don’t see that she’s done much of anything, let alone “everything”. If she took care of her own house and her own children instead of hiring maids to do the bulk of it, then I might concede that, but I she hasn’t and I don’t. But more than that, I don’t see how Francine is different. Or Trudy. They both had the same societal pressures that Betty had, but somehow that hasn’t stopped them from being fully actualized adults, taking the initiative to change things they aren’t happy with and showing other humans a modicum of empathy and kindness. Betty’s parents were hardly abusive, so it can’t be blamed on them, either. In fact, they were rather typical of their time except for their affluence which put them in rarefied air. They weren’t Archie and Abigail Whitman. So it’s curious that Francine is able to overcome peer pressures to move forward, and even extend a supportive life vest offer to Betty, but Betty “can’t” do the same.

          • KayeBlue

            By everything, I mean societal expectations: be beautiful, be slender, marry wealthy, have children. These weren’t presented as options or even pressures- it was What Is Done.

            Not everyone’s strong enough to buck that. If strength were common, it wouldn’t be a notable character trait.

          • http://armchairauthor.wordpress.com/ LesYeuxHiboux

            Trudy is younger than Betty, and has always shown more mettle. Francine is not the model of popular beauty that Betty was in her time, she became an elementary school teacher, not a model. Betty’s self-worth has always been entirely image-based, and she’s said as much on several occasions (without realizing it.) She was told that she would have everything as long as she was beautiful and perfect, by her parents and peers and the narrative of the time, and she bought into it completely. Now that it’s proven untrue, she has no other skills or character traits to fall back on.Her career-girl days were based on being beautiful. Her attempts to grow have been stunted, like the therapist reporting to Don or her refusal to take a recommendation from the child therapist because of her earlier experience. Betty is a smart and capable woman, college graduate fluent in Italian, but she doesn’t see herself that way. Betty is the perfect victim of timing.

            • http://stylingdutchman.blogspot.com/ annebeth

              she’s like the Sansa of Mad Men <3

          • Kathryn Sanderson

            Betty’s parents may not have been abusive, but they don’t seem to have been very loving or supportive, either. Maybe Trudy’s parents were, or maybe Trudy is simply a different kind of person.

            • 3hares

              Trudy’s parents adore her and practically every time we see her she’s talking about the next time she’s going to see them. Her father is fond of using business to punish Pete for misbehavior on Trudy’s behalf. So yes, her parents are definitely loving and supportive, and she also probably is a different kind of person as well. Betty can’t be happy; Trudy’s deals with negativity by ruthlessly denying or banishing it.

            • L’Anne

              Also, Pete can be a shit, and he’s certainly had his affairs– Peggy, the model, Beth, the neighbor, and of course raping the au pair. But he has a records of giving in to Trudy at almost every turn as well. The NYC apartment they bought season 1, the move to CT. The only time he put his foot down was about adoption. Otherwise, every thing Trudy wanted, she got. And her parents were always there to meddle and prop her up or punish Pete. Additionally, Pete didn’t try to undermine Trudy like Don often did with Betty. Although he questioned why having a baby was so important, he never derided her for her feelings. Don chided Betty for grieving her mother, called desperate for buying a bikini, basically said she was stupid for inviting a salesman into the home, called her hysterical over any number of political events or her response to her father’s stroke or to her suspicions about his affairs…

              Oh… and let’s not forget lying about his identity for 10+ years.

              Why do so many people want to give Don a pass and call Pete a shit?

            • KayeBlue

              Well, Pete IS a rapist. Don’s grabbed Betty in anger, but let go and walked away. Pete manipulated a very young woman from another country into trusting him, then raped her. All because he was bored.

              Don’s not a saint, but poor Gudrun is back in West Germany with post-traumatic stress disorder.

            • Chris

              Don was very sexually aggressive with Bobbie Barrett. He used aggressive sexual behavior to keep her in line when she was challenging him. Gudrun didn’t go back to Germany, she told her employer (whom she was scared to confess to about the dress) and she sent her husband down to talk to Pete.

            • KayeBlue

              Sexual aggression is not rape; Bobbie’s depicted as a shrewd and enthusiastic participant. I’m speaking hyperbolically about Gudrun to illustrate that she’ll almost certainly carry the ramifications of Pete’s decision to rape her for the rest of her life.

            • Chris

              No one said sexual aggression is rape, just that Don is far from a saint and that all the horrible things he does are often dismissed or forgotten while whatever Pete does is unforgivable. It’s the same with Roger. He performed at a party in blackface and has said some of the most hateful and racist things on the show but he is handsome and funny so countless people post every week how much they love him and that he is their favorite character. Lou’s remark to Dawn is not as hateful as some other comments we have heard on the show, but he is mean character and everyone hates him (myself included) and no one thinks he is going to be redeemed. Looks and charm go a long way.

            • KayeBlue

              No. nonononono. I disagree in the strongest possible terms. Blackface, casual racism, cheating on your partner with a 20-year-old, drinking through your daughter’s birthday party are all exceptionally dickish, morally bad things.

              Forcibly putting your penis inside an unwilling woman is an entirely different level.

            • Nancy Aronson

              It’s hard to discuss these points one by one because they are in a cluster. While I don’t dismiss or forget what Don has done, I find him charming. So sorry, but that’s my truth, man. As for “sexual aggression” I don’t even know what that means. I’ve never seen Don force himself on anyone, and you seem to have included it on your list of characteristics that are negative, thus my comment that it’s difficult to discuss the points one by one. Cheers.

            • Alloy Jane

              At the meeting with the Utz chips people, Don corners Bobby by the bathroom and physically prevents her from leaving by shoving his hand up her skirt and holding her by her crotch. She didn’t look too thrilled by it but was threatened enough to do Don’s bidding and get Jimmy to concede to the terms he presented. Just because she’d had kinky sex with him before that doesn’t mean that shit was welcome. You don’t see them together again until the party when Jimmy tells Betty that they were having an affaire.

              To put it in terms that may be more identifiable, Joan had probably had sex with Greg before he raped her on the office floor, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t rape her on the office floor.

            • Nancy Aronson

              It’s about interpretation. I thought Bobbie enjoyed the interaction. She’s a strong personality who was goading Don so that he would meet her energetically. It was part of the negotiation, and she was completely fine/turned on with it. I don’t claim to be correct. We saw this differently. You’re not thrilled was my thrilled. Your shit that was not welcome was my welcome shit.

            • Nancy Aronson

              “homosociality”

            • Alloy Jane

              It’s so interesting that what happened between them can be interpreted both ways. So much of this show allows the audience the freedom to draw conclusions based on how they see the world and sometimes I wonder if that’s a happy accident of if it is very deliberate on MW’s part. That episode sticks out to me because it changed how I felt about the Don character. I started off with the Megan season, which shows Don at his best, so going when I started to watch at Season 1, I found his dirtbaggery shocking, but was basically waiting to see him redeem himself. This episode just made me, quite frankly, hate him and I began to dread what would happen to Megan. What happens to Don affects the story, obviously, but I’m not invested in his well-being. I felt like that incident showed an even dirtier side to Don that we don’t usually see.

            • Alloy Jane

              RIGHT??? I never really got why people love Roger so much. He’s my sister’s favorite, which cements his general dirt-baggery in my mind. Oh but he’s so charming and funny and handsome! Blech.

            • Alloy Jane

              Whereas the aftermath of Don’s behavior results in rainbows and unicorns? He leaves nothing but destruction in his wake. And vomits drunkenly at them to boot.

            • KayeBlue

              Look, person, I’m extremely offended by the comparison of RAPE with anything but RAPE. I will absolutely not insult victims by making any other comparison. Good night.

            • Alloy Jane

              Um, ok. I consider Don’s treatment of Bobby Barrette at the Utz meeting to be sexual assault, but if that opinion offends you, rest assured I will never bother interacting with you again.

            • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

              Walk away from people and conversations you don’t like, please.

            • Alloy Jane

              Shoving your hand up someone’s snatch without permission is flat out sexual assault. He assaulted Bobby to get his way at the meeting, and that is just as bad as what Pete did.

            • 3hares

              Gotta say, I don’t think that’s the reason Don gets more of a pass on things that Pete gets called a shit for. I think he’d be considered a shit even without raping the au pair.

            • KayeBlue

              Of course. In-universe, they don’t know about that. Pete’s generally got a weasely, unlikable personality- plus all his co-workers know he’s only nice to clients. But for me, rape is the ultimate evil for a fictional character. Characters can do lots of despicable things for reasons that are justifiable or at least plausibly not intentionally evil within a story, but there’s no justification or explanation for rape. Pete’s appropriate response to the assassination of MLK is of no comfort to Gudrun when her boyfriend asks why she’s crying hysterically at the sight of pink dresses.

            • 3hares

              I was talking more about out of universe. I think Pete was judged differently before that episode and would still be judged differently even if that hadn’t happened. I think there’s a difference between never forgiving him for the rape, or considering that the worst thing done by somebody on the show, and judging him differently than Don on other issues.

            • KayeBlue

              I disagree. He went to her room after she declined to drink with him with the intent of extracting sex from her, regardless of anything else. Rapists almost always believe what they’re doing is something “less than rape”. That’s why it’s an integral part of judging Pete or any of Pete’s actions- his worldview is so skewed that he can do actual, immediate grave physical harm to another human being without reflection or reservation.

              But yes, the scene *should* feel creepy because that’s how many, many rapes go- a ‘decent’ guy with ‘lots of good qualities’ who ‘doesn’t realize’. So I’ll give credit to Weiner & Co for accurately disturbing portrayal.

            • 3hares

              I don’t understand what you’re disagreeing with. I didn’t say it wasn’t rape or that I thought MW was doing anything other than portraying the way a lot of rapes go. We’re completely agreeing on the scene. I was merely disagreeing with the interpretation above where he was intentionally manipulating her to get her to trust him so that he could rape her because he was bored, like he had sex or rape in mind the whole time. His particular impulse for rape or the moment he got the idea for rape doesn’t make it any less rape. I know it should feel creepy. I think it succeeded.

            • KayeBlue

              I’m disagreeing with your interpretation, because he manipulated her into trusting him, for which he expected sex, and when he didn’t get gratitude-sex, he decided to rape her instead. He did all this because he was bored. That is my interpretation. We can just have different interpretations of this scene, since i’m glad we agree all rape is heinous, including the rape committed by Pete.

            • Alloy Jane

              In my perspective, people who are as emotionally abusive as Don aren’t that much better than physical abusers. Pete’s a slimeball, absolutely, but he’s not a serial abuser the way Don is. He was bored, he did something atrocious, was forced to come to terms with his shitty behavior, and never did it again. And the really sick thing about Pete is that he doesn’t want to be that way. He’s doing what he thinks is expected of him. He’s desperately trying to assert himself as an alpha male.

              Don, on the other hand, is a pathological asshole, who aside from collaterally hurting people, deliberately goes out of his way to undermine them as well. The “heart of gold” shit they paint on him doesn’t impress me. That’s the way you’re SUPPOSED to be. You don’t get a gold star for basic human decency in my book. And Don KNOWS right from wrong but insists on doing wrong anyway. That, to me, makes Don worse. Pete at least has the ability to learn from his mistakes.

            • KayeBlue

              I’m not interested in discussing any topic with you. Your views are offensive as is your logic.

            • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

              We’re not interested in responses like this. Either learn to engage people without getting nasty or walk away from the conversation, please.

            • KayeBlue

              I don’t see it as nasty to state that I don’t wish to continue discussing with a poster I feel is offending me. But fine, your site, your rules. If you could post a code of what’s unacceptable, I’d appreciate that- I’ve been commenting here since 2010.

            • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

              “Why do so many people want to give Don a pass and call Pete a shit?”

              Why does Mad Men inspire questions like this every single season? No one on the show is a totally admirable person and no one who watches the show is required to formulate correct, appropriate, and consistent moral judgments on the characters. The point of stories is to find characters you identify with, not to find the most moral person in the story. This comes up constantly – with practically every single character (Why do people like Joan and give Peggy a pass? Why do people like Don and give Betty a pass? Why do people hate Betty and give Megan a pass?). And you know what happens? Every single time? Exactly what happened in the responses to this: people get really judgmental and huffy with each other because they aren’t interpreting the show in the “correct” manner and rendering the “correct” judgments against the characters.

              We’re not coming down on you; just coming down hard on this type of question, which, as we said, comes up constantly during Mad Men discussions and almost always derails them and leaves people with hard feelings.

            • KayeBlue

              Yes- we see Trudy organizing every social function in the neighborhood, she worked over the docents at the Met, Ken Cosgrove mentions that Cynthia and Trudy are in a garden club together. She had hobbies before and after Tammy was born. Trudy also did have more of a choice to become a mother… it was something she truly wanted, and experienced at age 28-30, vs. Betty’s becoming pregnant immediately after marriage at 21. Their circumstances are much more different than first appear.

          • Alloy Jane

            Trudy is a princess. They made it very clear that she was raised to wield power because she is the specialest of the specials. We don’t know anything about Francine’s history, but she was always depicted as being more rational and practical than Betty. And abuse isn’t always physical. Betty was raised to believe that she wasn’t worthy of being loved unless she was beautiful, and that is incredibly damaging. Her mother rejected her and would constantly punish her for her flaws, and emotional abuse causes as much emotional stunting as physical abuse.

            Trudy’s innate sense of authority and Francine’s practicalness enable them to be brave in the face of change. Betty has moments but overall, she isn’t very brave.

        • Musicologie

          Speaking of Gene’s age, does it seem to anyone else as though Gene and Bobby are looking a little too young for the ages they’re supposed to be at this point?

          • tallgirl1204

            If Bobby is supposed to be in second grade, he’s perfect. Is he?

            • KayeBlue

              No. If he was 7 or 8, he’d have to be born between the second and first seasons of the show, or at least during the first season. He’s a walking, talking, potty-trained child in season 1.

          • KayeBlue

            I agree. I’ll buy Gene as a sweet-natured snuggly 5-year-old, but Bobby couldn’t have been younger than 3 in 1960 (in which case he was a very well-spoken toddler). The actor playing Bobby doesn’t look 12 to me. Although maybe it’s that there was no ‘tween’ stage then.

            • 3hares

              But that’s no uncommon at that age. Some boys look way young for a long time. It’s like if you ever watch Freaks and Geeks. I spent the whole show being unclear about how old the character Sam was. He looked 11 or 12, and his friends looked like 13 to 15-16 respectively to me. But in fact they were all 14. It was just that Sam was the kid who didn’t hit puberty until later, while Bill hit it early and grew tall fast. I assume the actor playing Bobby is the right age and is just totally pre-puberty.

            • KayeBlue

              Found it. He’s supposed to be 5 in 1962. So he’s 12. I dunno, he looks super young to me. Then again, so does Justin Bieber.

            • VeryCrunchyFrog

              Mason Vale Cotton will be 12 in June, so he’s just the right age for Bobby, whose birthday is probably in summer or fall. When I think back to the end of 6th grade (in 1968, close to the MM time-frame), my classmates included boys who were as small and young-looking as Bobby Draper.

            • KayeBlue

              Just said in another response: I checked a still frame of the class at the milking barn. They all look 8-10 years old, although the girl who likes Bobby is a bit taller than he is. I think MM missed the mark a bit.

          • Kit Jackson 1967

            Kids have a range though. There isn’t one uniform look to a particular age. Some kids look older than they are, and some look younger.

            • KayeBlue

              Looking at a still frame of the class when they’re milking the cow (because I downloaded the ep from a, uh, completely legitimate and legal source), I’m struck by how young they ALL look. You’re right, at 11-13 some kids should have shot up like weeds and some should look like large toddlers. They all look 8-10. Not a one is tall enough to reach the teacher’s shoulder. MM does occasionally miss the mark, and I think they did here.

            • Alloy Jane

              You have to remember that with all the hormones in food, kids are hitting puberty earlier than they have in generations past. They may have skewed a bit young with the children extras in order to maintain authenticity for the time period. But Bobby is just starting to get to that awkward stage preceded by puberty. One of my nephew’s is 12 and he’s got the “all elbows and head” look that Bobby’s sporting.

          • MarinaCat

            The actor who plays Bobby will is 11 going on 12. I posted in the other MM recap – it was stated that Bobby was 10 in the beginning of season 5 when Don dropped his kids off after Memorial Dat Weekend, right before the surprise birthday party. That makes Bobby 12 going on 13.

            Gene doesn’t seem to be aging.

          • Travelgrrl

            Considering they’re on about their 3rd Bobby Draper at this point, you think they could have ordered an older looking 4th one for this season. And there’s no reason for Gene to look so tiny.

            They hit the jackpot with Sally – I guess the Bobby’s are a bit more expendable (though Bobby was excellent in this episode).

          • Alloy Jane

            No, they seem age-appropriate to me. Bobby is 12 and just starting to look gangly and awkward. Gene is dressed and treated like a baby but he’s not baby-sized. That’s a significant amount of kid snuggling Betty’s boobs.

        • isapaiva

          So true. I started reading the Feminine Mystique the other day, and I’m so glad I watch Mad Men, because without Betty I would not have as clear a picture of what Betty Friedan is talking about when she describes the afflictions of these housewives in the 50s and 60s. It’s clear to me that Mathew Weiner has read it and chose Betty to tell the story of those women who were not the Peggy’s and Joan’s of the world. Consider these excerpts:

          “Millions of women lived their lives in the image of those pretty pictures of the American suburban housewife, kissing their husbands goodbye in front of the picture window, depositing their sationwagonsful of children at school, and smiling as they ran the new electric waxer over the spotless kitchen floor. (…) They pitied their poor frustrated mothers, who had dreamed of having a career. Their only dream was to be perfect wives and mothers; their highest ambition to have five children and a beautiful house, their only fight to get and keep their husbands.”

          And yet…

          “Sometimes a woman would say “I feel empty somehow… incomplete.” Or she would say “I feel as if I don’t exist.” Sometimes she blotted out the feeling with a tranquilizer. Sometimes she thought the problem was her husband, or her children, or that what she really needed was to redecorate the house, or move to a better neighborhood, or have an affair, or another baby. Sometimes, she went to a doctor with symptoms she could hardly describe: “A tired feeling… I get so angry with the children it scares me… I feel like crying without any reason.” (A Cleveland doctor called it “the housewife’s syndrome.”) A number of women told me about bleeding blisters that break out on their hand and arms (…), but it isn’t caused by detergent and it isn’t cured by cortisone.”

          Betty’s trembling hands in the first season are of course a textbook example of this. And that’s what I love about fiction! It helps you to understand the reality of millions of people, because it puts a real human face on a subject. Reading Friedan’s book helped me empathize with Betty, and watching Betty helped me to understand a whole generation of women.

          • Alana

            Watch Revolutonary Road with Kate Winslet and Leonardo diCaprio.

            • isapaiva

              I love that movie! The book is on my reading list :)

          • sweetlilvoice

            That book and The Group by Mary McCarthy should be mandatory reading for everyone. Also, Valley of the Dolls.

        • Nancy Aronson

          It’s much harder for me to feel sympathy for Betty than for Don. I can intellectually understand why she deserves compassion, but instinctively she’s a difficult character for me to respect.

          When I look at the way Don and Betty treat their kids. . . .
          While other viewers seem to have a different impression, from my perspective there have been many times when Betty is just plain mean. Her insistence that Bobby eat the candy at the picnic, her tone, the way she donned her sunglasses, smoked her cigarette, was inexplicable to me. She seemed to communicate: you’ve made a mistake. you’ve ruined the day. you are worthless. thus i withdraw my love.
          While Don was consistently a selfish prick in a wide variety of ways to wife and co-workers, I can’t recall any time he was cruel to his children. When Sally caught him in flagrante (due to his carelessness) with the neighbor last season it broke his heart (again, this is my impression). I think it was the first season that he blew off Sally’s party; but she was too young to realize what was happening and feel that he was taking her for granted. Perhaps Betty was more concerned about how Don taking off made her look than with how it made Sally feel.
          When Betty was freaking out on Bobby for some minor infraction — breaking a record player? — and called her son a liar (for lying about it – possibly because his mother’s wrath frightened him), Don rose to Bobby’s defense saying that he was a better kid than he, Don, had ever been.
          Don doesn’t pick on defenseless children.

          Also, for all his many and terrible, terrible faults, Don is at least interesting. The man has taste in movies and books. And women, actually. Except for that damn first wife (smile). Betty seems mostly shallow and bitchy. There are many good reasons that she is who she is, and that she deserves sympathy. She is a difficult character for me to cut a break.

          • KayeBlue

            Well, the argument can be made that though Betty’s not doing well or necessarily even RIGHT as a parent, she’s with those kids a hell of a lot more than Don. Yes, in later seasons she has Carla and other help, but she’s interacting with them daily, shown making dinners, knows who their friends are. I know divorced parents who call their children every night when they’re apart. It’s cruel to only allow your children into your life when it’s convenient for you, nevermind exposing their mother to all manner of venereal disease. It’s easier for Don to be philosophical about his children when he’s not wiping noses and chasing after them because they’re playing in the street even after they’ve been told not to 8,000 times.

            Just arguing for the sake of argument :-) . I largely agree with you- too bad Parents Encouraging Parents won’t exist til Bobby’s 40, because Betty desperately needs it.

            • Nancy Aronson

              Absolutely. She’s in a Much More Difficult Position for so many reasons. No Creative Outlet. Mushier Boundaries. Why am I doing this capitalizing thing? It is so unfair for me to feel this way about Betty. I should be able to relate to her more in many ways, in fact — although my personality is more like Don’s.
              Truth be told, I feel a tad guilty: her kind of ugliness is uglier to me than Don’s. And every time I hear Matthew Weiner defend her, I don’t buy it. Recently I saw some video of a panel where he advocated for Betty firing Carla. (I thought: but not providing a reference? C’mon!) And I question whether/how I’m mired in my own perspective. Love this show! I’m not the kind of viewer who’s invested in being right. And I am uncomfortable with reviewers who continually assume that they speak for the audience in a show as complex as this.

          • clemdane

            I find her highly complex and not shallow at all. It’s only that she is unable to access her own depths.

            • Nancy Aronson

              Yes. But her interests! Rumaki! Or however that’s spelled. If majored in anthropology I wouldn’t mind hearing her take on Rye.

      • Chaiaiai

        Agreed, you win for this comment. My grandmother was Betty (lived in Darien instead of Ossining), had an eating disorder until she died, and called my mother fat all the time. I watch this show for therapy.

      • Golfkat

        Didn’t Bobby also ask her something along the lines of whether she was going to eat that night? So he’s used to her choosing to skip meals.

      • 28fairplay

        It was a sandwich at lunch that was not eaten, not a salad, maybe foreshadowing the sandwich Bobby didn’t expect her to want.

        • L’Anne

          I did a few takes on the plate. It definitely is an old style chef salad. The kind that they’d layer strips of ham and cheese on top on one side and a stack of folded turkey on the other (or folded roast beef) on the other. The left side here has the meat strips and the folded turkey is on the right.

          I’ll guess some kind dressing came out on the side in metal boat on a saucer with a gravy spoon in it.

          • 28fairplay

            You’re right. Looked like half a sandwich and filling on the plate, at first, to me. She certainly didn’t eat much of it. It’s not easy to keep her girlish figure.

            • L’Anne

              The only reason I noticed it is that I used to be obsessed with those salads.

            • 28fairplay

              Well it wasn’t so easy to see, so good catch. There weren’t any greens on her plate, so I guess she did eat something.

            • L’Anne

              The cheffiest of the chef salads– the greens were visible from the top. They were entirely obscured by the eggs, chese, and meat.

            • EarthaKitten

              I think it might have been a Cobb Salad which is loaded with calories and fat…the Cobb doesn’t come with much lettuce…it comes with lots of bad stuff. I ordered one a few years back and simply could not believe my eyes; it was as though the chef was cleaning out the refrigerator!

      • Frank_821

        Yes I took Betty’s anger towards Bobby as partly do to his comment about her not eating. They seemed to be having a wonderful time and she seemed to be feeling good about herself and was allowing herself to eat.

        • MartyBellerMask

          Her son has been seeing her as she is, and she’s taken aback by it.

      • rkdgal

        I agree — there were several references (spoken and visual) that she’s got an eating disorder. Bobby was surprised that she wanted her sandwich, and instead of eating something, she smoked instead. I’m sure it’s not the first time that she had cigarettes for lunch!

        • sweetlilvoice

          Cigarettes along with melba toast and wine have always been Betty’s diet of choice even during pregnancy.

      • judybrowni

        Yes! I had the same thought, based on a (wicked) stepmother who never ate and never said anything that wasn’t a slam.

      • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

        definitely. They’ve dropped hints galore about Betty’s anorexia from the beginning. She was very obviously verbally abused by her mother with some possible physical abuse- when she relates to Sally about the time her mother threatened to cut her hair off, I got the sense that Betty felt it was a very real possibility that her mother would actually do it. Betty’s scenes break my heart. Not only does she struggle to relate to her children in a way different than her mother’s example and usually fails, she knows it. But between the abuse and her father’s idealization of his wife, Betty doesn’t even begin to have the tools to criticize her mother without probably having another nervous breakdown.
        And of course with Don, she married a man that made her feel just like her mother. Someone who demanded perfection, but she was still never good enough.
        Then she married Henry who mostly accepted her. But she transferred to another related disorder- compulsive overeating. And when she was maybe finding a different woman to model herself after (Momma Francis), Henry decides that he’s running for state senator, which is what Betty wanted. But when Henry tells her that he can’t wait for people to meet her, there’s a fleeting look on Betty’s face when she realizes what she’s going to have to do. She’s back in the same boat- but instead of craving her mother’s approval or Don’s approval, she’s going after the approval of the general public as a politician’s wife. Nowadays, she could enter therapy, but back then, she doesn’t even know that there is a problem, just that she doesn’t always like what she has to do to “earn” affection.

        • Travelgrrl

          I felt that Bobby’s faults led her to think of Don’s faults of not caring, not doing enough for her. So perhaps the sandwich was more to her than just a sandwich, it was spelling out that Bobby will eventually = Don.

          • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

            Oh for sure. Betty has always viewed Bobby through the lens of being like Don. And I think the idea of Bobby giving away “her” sandwich to another girl exposed Betty’s complicated view of herself. She’s been infantilized her whole life, so her ability to switch gears and be the adult caregiver is severely impaired. There was an interview with January Jones where she said the scene was in Betty’s mind, another man failing her.

          • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

            Oh for sure. Betty has always viewed Bobby through the lens of being like Don. And I think the idea of Bobby giving away “her” sandwich to another girl exposed Betty’s complicated view of herself. She’s been infantilized her whole life, so her ability to switch gears and be the adult caregiver is severely impaired. There was an interview with January Jones where she said the scene was in Betty’s mind, another man failing her.

            sorry if this double posts. Disqus seems to be eating my answers.

            • Travelgrrl

              A good enough post to read twice!

        • tallgirl1204

          I also think that when she asks Henry “Why don’t they love me?” that it’s not the right question. I think she has spent the day trying to feel like a good mother, and failed, and the real question is “Why don’t I love them?”

          • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

            that’s an interesting way to look at it, but I think the way I interpreted it was that Betty has been taught to only understand one kind of love. She probably expects her children to love her in the same way she loved her mother and just can’t process the kind of love they offer her. She had some problems with Henry and the way he offers his love, to the point of not wanting to sleep with him, which cleared up when she thought she might have cancer.

            • Travelgrrl

              She wants to arrange things just so – and her husband and children can’t just love her, they have to love her the Right Way. Don couldn’t do it (and perhaps didn’t try very hard) and Henry tries but he isn’t Don.

          • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

            dang- Disqus ate my comment-
            I think that’s an interesting interpretation, but I kind of took from it that Betty only really understands one kind of love. She probably expects her children to love her in the same way she loved her mother and doesn’t really know how to accept the love they show her. She had some problems with Henry’s love as well, which resulted in them not sleeping together (also probably tied into her body issues), which resolved itself when she thought she had cancer.

            • KayeBlue

              Well put. Betty’s not exactly a scholar of developmental psychology (“I thought children had no concept of time”), which was pretty bad at the time anyway (if one of her kids had autism, *she’d* have been blamed). For her, good will always be the enemy of perfect.

          • Glammie

            Yes. My take is that Betty, as well as being a stand-in for the unhappy housewife of the time, actually is a narcissist–thus, her weird self-absorbed reactions to things. She doesn’t really love her kids because she doesn’t really know how to love other people–how to even see them as individuals separate from her own needs.

            I think we’re also meant to contrast Bobby and Betty’s lack of meal with the reconciliation and meal between Don and Sally in the last episode. Don is finally with it enough to find a way to literally nourish Sally. Betty can only think of what Bobby “took” from her–the sandwich–and punishes him for it. Betty’s destructive self-absorption in a nutshell. Also, we’re also seeing Bobby’s shock of awareness and recognition of what Betty is. Poor Bobby–and, again, I’m glad he’s now played by a capable actor. We respond to his pain.

            • melisaurus

              I don’t think Betty is a narcissist only because I’ve been like Betty. Fortunately I was afforded the opportunity to go to therapy and change. Unfortunately I spent a very long time thinking everything was about me, being unloving, and reacting. For a true narcissist another way can not be learned for a person who had not so great role models (my and betty’s dysfunctional families) it is possible.

            • Glammie

              But you were able to change and, I’d guess, wanted to do so. Betty’s been in therapy and nothing happened. More to the point, Betty went from a bad marriage to Don, where her misery was pretty understandable, to marrying a guy who adores her, is loyal, has a good job, etc. But Betty’s still Betty and still horrible to her kids. Also, when Betty *wants* to be or feel like a good mother, she fails. She doesn’t know how to connect with other people. She’s always “off.” Her scenes where she’s trying to be motherly always come off as stilted–as if she’s trying to do what she thinks people should do–but without any sense of those feelings being genuine. So, the irony is that Betty is physically there for her kids in a way Don seldom is, but Don can make a genuine connection with them and Betty can’t.

              Or to use another pair of contrasting scenes–Betty’s lunch-gone-wrong has her lamenting how her children won’t love her. Don’s visit to the movies with Bobby last season has him realize that he loves his son.

              In a sense, Betty pretends to have the feelings she thinks she should have while Don pretends he doesn’t have the feelings he does.

            • BKagainwiththesweatpants

              “Betty’s been in therapy and nothing happened.” Because she had a therapist who, at best, was detached/uninvolved and, at worst, guilty of malpractice. If she’d been able to continue to see Dr Edna, maybe she would’ve made some progress. She actually was gaining some insight with Dr Edna, but as Edna pointed out, she was a child psychiatrist and therefore could not treat Betty. Mores the pity, because even Betty could marginally see that Edna was helping her. I can’t hate on Betty, even with all her faults, because of the reasons you enumerate. She’s a tragic figure and so reminiscent of many moms I knew as a kid about the same age as Bobby.

            • Kathryn Sanderson

              It should also be noted that therapy in the 60s was very different from therapy now. It was deeply sexist by today’s standards. Freudian psychoanalysis was big, where the patient talked and the psychiatrist listened but didn’t offer much in the way of advice or suggestions. People didn’t talk about “coping skills” or behavior modification. The psychiatric profession infantilized women, who were frequently labeled “neurotic” or “unfeminine” for wanting to do something other than be housewives. (Or were said to have “penis envy”) Therapy for Betty would most likely have been aimed at making her “integrate” with her role as a housewife, that is, accept being a housewife (sometimes with the help of tranquilizers) rather than having her explore other possibilities. Things have changed a lot.

              *Disclaimer: I’m not an expert on this by any means. This is what I remember from reading “The Feminine Mystique” and other feminist writings from the 60s/early 70s. Psychiatry and psychology got lots of criticism, for the reasons I’ve outlined above. But Betty’s therapy would definitely have been different from today’s.

            • Glammie

              By 1969 there had been some movement from straight Freudian treatments and narcissism is well covered in Freud. Behavior modification techniques were around as were a number of alternative therapies.

              Yes, things have changed, but 1969 was not how you think it was–if anything, it was characterized, intellectually, for just about any idea out there being up for debate. Tremendous, angry questioning of the status quo–whatever it was. The Feminine Mystique was 1963, so pre major upheaval.

            • Glammie

              I don’t hate Betty, but I think she’s meant to be a damaged, incomplete person. I thought part of the point of the situations with Dr. Edna is that Betty had no interest in talking about Sally’s issues–she wanted to talk about herself. Betty’s always the needy child. So, of course, she opens up to a child psychologist. But she’s not responding the way a mother would normally respond. The needs of Betty’s kids never come before Betty’s needs–she wouldn’t even know how to do that, but most parents do that as a matter of course. It’s kind of in the basic job description.

            • melisaurus

              BKagain already said I what I wanted to say: that Betty’s first “therapist” was a total quack. He barely listened to her and then completely violated her trust by calling Don and minimizing all of her problems by calling her childish. How would a therapist like that help anyone? Now Betty’s view on therapists is skewed to think that they’re all disinterested and will tell her husband harmful things about her private thoughts. It seems like you don’t have a good grasp about what a therapist should do or what a dysfunctional family/person is and what they do. So I think it is strange that you’re diagnosing someone with a personality disorder.

              Betty had no solid role modeling for good parenting. She may see on the surface what other moms do but doesn’t know the different mom “scripts” and how to respond to the different ways a child can react – especially when her kids are quickly becoming as dysfunctional as her. Just like Don who has no experience with being honest when he is honest it blows up in his face. Amazing to me that you have sympathy for Don’s absenteeism but jump to personality disorder for the parent who stuck around and is trying even if she’s failing.

              It isn’t true that she doesn’t connect with people, we have seen her connect with Don, Henry, the horse guy, even Glenn – as weird as it is. Betty hans’t ever learned any coping skills for when she is sad or stressed where would she (since she distrusts therapists)? Today Francine was telling her about her job I think Betty is confronted with a great deal of fear and discomfort about her role in life. Unfortunately her only coping mechanism is to activate her bitch face (smoke a cigarette) and tell Francine, in her way, that she doesn’t want to talk about it and change the subject. Bobby steals her lunch? Activate her bitch face, smoke a cigarette, respond passive aggressively.

              It is so common for adults who grow up in dysfunctional families to lack coping skills or have unhealthy coping skills. They often don’t possess the ability to not take things personally. I live in the 21st century so when I had problems with my life I had the option to go to therapy, study yoga, mindfulness meditation, and attend al-anon – none of these were commonly available in 1960s, especially to a suburban housewife. Most of these things were just beginning in America.
              The few times we’ve seen her have personal growth are with Dr Edna and Weight watchers. It’s possible that Betty has an eating disorder, so weight watchers was probably unsustainable for her now. Obviously Dr. Edna could not continue her services with her.

            • Glammie

              Agree that Betty’s first Freudian therapist was worse than useless, but I’d also say that 1969 isn’t the dark ages when it comes to child-rearing–I say this as someone who was a child then and who’s a parent now. Betty’s weird, cold reaction to her children is not a sign of the times any more than it would be now. It goes beyond anger–there’s no empathy. Betty has absolutely no comprehension of why Bobby did what he did and how he feels about it. It’s not simply that she thinks her feelings matters more; she actually doesn’t have a clue what Bobby is feeling or that he or Bobby feel much of anything outside of her–and then her big question is not about Bobby, but about her being loved–Betty’s need to be admired, loved, seen pretty much overrides everything else.

              Yes, she has episodes where she seems to improve a bit, but she falls back into her odd narcissistic behavior. Betty really doesn’t change–and her issues go beyond being a housewife and expectations of women. We’re seeing other women move on with the times, but Betty doesn’t.

              I don’t say this to paint Betty as evil incarnate or as a Betty hater–I actually enjoy her as a character because she’s distinctive as characters go, but I wasn’t surprised when Weiner said Betty’s the one character for whom he has a diagnosis. I don’t think Betty’s issues excuse Don’s behaviors. I do think Weiner’s making a point, however, that neither Don nor Betty is to blame for the others’ issues. Both married better, nicer people as second spouses and both are still very damaged. Henry is as about as good a husband for Betty as there could be, but she’s still not truly happy. She can’t be–which makes her pitiable.

        • inchoate

          A lot of people start to binge eat/overeat if they’ve been deprived of food for a while, for obvious physical and psychological reasons. Fat Betty always rang true to me for that reason. Only instead of balancing out her food intake (and maybe accepting a weight a little heavier than “ideal”) she’s gone back to diet pills and cigarettes.

          • KayeBlue

            I guess like Don, she hides her ‘real’ identity as Fat Betty because she associates that identity with trauma.

          • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

            I agree, although I think she restricts food rather than takes diet pills. It seemed like when Mamma Francis suggested she get some that it was a new experience for her. Although she might have found a doctor to prescribe them to her after the initial doctor refused her.
            There’s a lot of compulsion in my family, including ocd, anorexia, and overeating. While I understand it differs from person to person, in my family it was pretty common to be anorexic and or take prescription diet pills for years until the person hit menopause and then bc of natural slowing of their metabolism, they’d gain a couple pounds. When they did it’d shatter their control and they’d go into compulsive overeating. In their minds, there wasn’t a difference between 5 pounds and 50.

      • Travelgrrl

        I still hated her for that scene. For heaven’s sakes, have half of the candy for lunch! It wasn’t a personal rejection, Betts!

        • Glammie

          But for Betty it was–that’s why I think she’s not just an unhappy housewife, but someone with a personality disorder. Her perspective is that out of whack with other people’s. Also, I think, why she can’t move with the times. She’s frozen.

          • Travelgrrl

            It pained me (but not as much as when Don said he’d take the job with the draconian provisions at the end – I gasped!) so much that she couldn’t just let it ride. However much a harridan I may have been, I would have eaten candy at lunch, by god!

            • Glammie

              Well, I’ve been a royal bitch when my blood sugar’s tanked–the difference is that I turn reasonably nice and apologetic when fed. And I’d have felt horrific when I saw Bobby’s hurt look on my kid’s face. But then, if I’d been packing lunch there would have been more than two sandwiches.

      • Adriana

        And did you pick up on Bobby’s reasoning for trading away the second sandwich? He really didn’t think she was going to eat lunch. Even her kids must pick up on the fact that she skips meals.

      • isapaiva

        I started reading the Feminine Mystique the other day, and I’m so glad I watch Mad Men, because without Betty I would not have as clear a picture of what Betty Friedan is talking about when she describes the afflictions of these housewives in the 50s and 60s. It’s clear to me that Mathew Weiner has read it and chose Betty to tell the story of those women who were not the Peggy’s and Joan’s of the world. Consider these excerpts:

        “Millions of women lived their lives in the image of those pretty pictures of the American suburban housewife, kissing their husbands goodbye in front of the picture window, depositing their sationwagonsful of children at school, and smiling as they ran the new electric waxer over the spotless kitchen floor. (…) They pitied their poor frustrated mothers, who had dreamed of having a career. Their only dream was to be perfect wives and mothers; their highest ambition to have five children and a beautiful house, their only fight to get and keep their husbands.”

        And yet…

        “Sometimes a woman would say “I feel empty somehow… incomplete.” Or she would say “I feel as if I don’t exist.” Sometimes she blotted out the feeling with a tranquilizer. Sometimes she thought the problem was her husband, or her children, or that what she really needed was to redecorate the house, or move to a better neighborhood, or have an affair, or another baby. Sometimes, she went to a doctor with symptoms she could hardly describe: “A tired feeling… I get so angry with the children it scares me… I feel like crying without any reason.” (A Cleveland doctor called it “the housewife’s syndrome.”) A number of women told me about bleeding blisters that break out on their hand and arms (…), but it isn’t caused by detergent and it isn’t cured by cortisone.”

        Betty’s trembling hands in the first season are of course a textbook example of this. And that’s what I love about fiction! It helps you to understand the reality of millions of people, because it puts a real human face on a subject. Reading Friedan’s book helped me empathize with Betty, and watching Betty helped me to understand a whole generation of women.

      • Nancy Aronson

        She seems mostly disconnected from her body, to me. Caught up in her obsession with herself, doesn’t seem to engage in much movement, pre-occupied by her appearance, reactive, competitive. Goodness knows what’s going on with her various bodily systems.

    • Lisa Petrison

      Francine’s suit reminded me of the outfit that Betty wore in her last scene in “Close the Door, Have a Seat,” where she is on her way to Reno with Henry and the baby. I went back and looked at that old episode (last one in Season 3) again, and I still think that.

    • decormaven

      I swear, that shot of Betty cradling Gene with the blue robe with the ribbon trim; it looks like a shot from the 1969 Sears Wish Book. “As the family beds down awaiting St. Nick…”

    • Scimommy

      Loved your analysis of Joan’s dress. In some ways, Don has been her office husband but she’s had it with him and was ready to kick him to the curb once and for all. I do think that she is misguided in this, as you (or someone else???) pointed out in the recap of this episode, because Joan does not fully appreciate the work of the creative team. For her they are an impediment to the smooth running of the office. It’s interesting that in this episode Don, Joan, and Peggy were as distant from each other in terms of clothing as possible. I wonder if eventually there will be a reconciliation of sorts, signaled in part through common colors/motifs.

      • 3hares

        Currently it seems like there’s several people who would obviously be on Team Draper because they are committed to a more creative agency but they can’t talk to each other while the money counters are much more organized, sitting together at the table and speaking plainly to each other. The people we know are frustrated with the current situation or missing Don are being silenced or not listening to each other.

        • Travelgrrl

          I didn’t like it that both Ted and Pete’s wishes were taken over by others – I think BOTH would have been onboard with Don coming back, without the Draconian measures.

          • 3hares

            I agree. At least with Pete we’d heard him say to Don himself that if it was up to him he’d be back, but I thought Cutler was probably wrong saying he spoke for Ted there.

      • siriuslover

        Creative is an impediment to the smooth running of the office: Like when she put that bulky copier in Peggy’s office back in Season 2? Interesting that the accounts / management people don’t seem to realize that they wouldn’t have a business without the creatives. That’s why I loved Bert Cooper saying to Jim “still speaking for Ted there?”

        • 3hares

          Some of the accounts guys, but probably not all of them. We’ve interestingly never seen Cutler being a particularly creative Accounts person either, while Roger (and the person he’s speaking for, Pete) are, and they both do want Don.

          • siriuslover

            I suppose I should clarify: Joan and Jim. In other words, I agree with you.

      • not_Bridget

        I do hope that Don succeeds in winning back Peggy & Joan–he was close to each of them in a way. Watch for harmonizing colors.

        I hope that Megan meets a nice man in California & gets an easy divorce from Don……

    • Ginger

      Thank you, thank you, thank you for shedding light on Joan’s red rose dress! I blurted out “RED ROSES!” when she appeared and freaked out my husband. I’ve been trying to figure out the connection between her marriage and her current situation since I first saw the episode (and then immediately re-watched it).

      • Janice Bartels

        I freaked my husband out when Dawn showed up in Peggy’s yellow. Tried to explain, but he looked at me the way I look at him when he watches Ancient Aliens.

      • MilaXX

        I knew immediately they were red roses of anger.

        • Ginger

          I knew they signaled anger…just couldn’t quite get the full connection. I’m dense like that when it comes to things like this though. :)

        • not_Bridget

          They were a bright orangey red. Back then, most redheads would not have worn that shade. But Joan knows what suits her.

          She didn’t know about Don’s return when she got ready that morning, but she was obviously dressed to take no prisoners. Nancy Sinatra’s version of Lee Hazlewood’s “These Boots are Made for Walking” came out in ’66 but was still heard from time to time…..

          • MilaXX

            The costuming is often done to enhance a scene, not as a personal choice to make a statement.One of the few exceptions to this are the seduction scenes. So no, Joan wouldn’t have intentionally worn angry roses but as part of Jamie Bryant using wardrobe to punctuate and/or tell a story the costuming reflects that, hence Joan wearing “angry roses” in a scene in to underscore the fact that the partners are still feeling the repercussions of Don’s behavoir.

    • siriuslover

      Great post, AGAIN! I didn’t even catch that Don in the passenger seat until you presented that freeze frame. TLo asks, “Why would Don choose the latter over the former?” Why indeed. Why indeed. I will answer (since TLo started it) with the immortal words of one Scooby-Doo: RUH RO!

      • Geoff Dankert

        The best guess — and who but Matt Weiner knows, really? — is that while Wells Rich Greene was certainly the big “creative” agency of the time (one word: Braniff!), it was still Mary Wells’ agency … and even though Don Draper is on his redemption world tour, he still doesn’t like taking a back seat to a woman.

        • Cabernet7

          Maybe that, but also he knows he could never be the star there. At the company where he is still a partner, he has a chance to climb back to the top again.

        • CassandraMortmain

          So glad someone finally mentioned this. Mary Wells was the red-hot star of that agency, indeed, of the ad world in general at that time. No way in hell is Don Draper going to play second fiddle to another brilliant creative person who is maybe even more talented than he is and who also has lots of power. Which he wouldn’t have had, based on Roger’s comment about the offer they made Don. He was willing to accept the restrictions the Sterling Coop group made because he knows there’s no one else there with his star power and he believes he can quickly work his way back up. That would not have been the case at Wells Rich Greene. Don did not want to go toe-to-toe with Mary Wells.

          • tallgirl1204

            Ah, thanks for clearing the confusion. At our viewing party, all we could think of was Mary Wells the singer, which made no sense.

            • MartyBellerMask

              Nothing you could say could tear me away from my Don…

        • reganmeister

          My dad worked for Braniff then! He WORSHIPPED Mary Wells, pointed out her commercials on TV and explained why they were genius to 8-year-old me…. (Mary Wells was married to Braniff’s president, Harding Lawrence….)

        • MartyBellerMask

          Back seat. I see what you did there.

      • Amanda Miller

        I think it’s a rejection thing. Don is used to being the leaver- he leaves before anyone has the chance to reject him (with the exception of Sylvia, and look how he handled that). It’s kind of reminiscent of that scene in an earlier season (3? 4?) when Roger asks Don which client he’d want most, and Don answers “so-and-so, because they rejected us”.

    • 3hares

      The scene with the woman at the table makes me think of something I read in a book of essays about the use of time in different TV shows. The essay about Mad Men was called “Did You Get Pears?” and was talking about that classic moment as an example of how the show often sticks in seemingly strange and unconnected things that don’t sync up with anything else. LIke here, the woman isn’t explained, she doesn’t lead to an affair, she’s not someone from the past. She’s just a random weird moment.

      This is because the show takes place in a universe where we’re supposed to assume that there are a lot of things going on outside the story. We don’t know who that woman is, but she’s there because she’s got some reason and motivation to be there that our main character, Don, has forgotten or doesn’t understand and will never know. It’s like the old couple with the pears–we don’t know who they are, we never know if he got pears, but there’s suddenly this moment where the camera gets distracted with them.

      Long-winded way of saying I think that’s why the woman works, along with as you said, as someone who emphasizes the theme of people who want Dawn and the echoes of Don’s past.

      So love looking at Dawn’s new outfits and your explanation!

      • Guest

        Do you mean Betty and Francine at the table? Francine is from Betty’s past. She was one of Betty’s best friends in Ossining,

        • 3hares

          No, I meant the woman who approaches Don’s table when he’s with the other guys and tells him she thinks he might know her and her room’s upstairs etc. There’s been a lot of discussion about what her deal was, or guessing who she was, but it’s not actually explained in the ep. I don’t think we’re supposed to know. I recognized Francine immediately (and cheered)!

          • decormaven

            I think she’s a representation from Anna’s Tarot reading. “You’re definitely in a strange place – but here’s the sun.” That blonde’s presence signals the resurrection.

            • Shawn EH

              Love it. Whatever he’s got, people want it again. Except for Megan, because she’s had about enough!

          • EarthaKitten

            It may have no significance at all but in TLo’s screen shot I noticed that Don is looking over his right shoulder in the same way he did when he was approached by the strange woman in the final scene of Season 5. It is interesting to look back at that scene and note the difference in Don’s expression following the proposition from Season 7 stranger. This is clearly Don in a different mental space.

      • KayeBlue

        What book was that? I’d like to read it.

        I thought the woman was either a prostitute sent by the rival agency or a woman so bold as to approach a devastatingly handsome man like Don. Quite a few women have made bold passes at him, although usually not to THAT extent.

        • 3hares

          It’s called Time in Television Narrative: Exploring Temporality in 21st Century Programming. Edited by Melissa Ames.

    • MsKitty

      My F5 key thanks you, it was on the receiving end of non-stop abuse this morning.

      Yes to the shout-out of the crocheted outfits. Me and my sisters had quite a few. One that I particularly remember was a red-white-blue pullover vest with a blue skirt. Match it with a white turtleneck, white tights, and navy patent-leather flats and that was my look for 2nd grade school picture day. Being in Catholic school, picture day was the only day we didn’t have to wear uniforms so us kids were always dressed to the nines.

      • Lisa_Co

        As a long time Apple/Mac user, what does the F5 key do? *hides face in shame*

        • Jade Hawk

          the same it does on my mac keyboard: it’s the refresh button.

    • Kate Andrews

      Amazing again! I think Harry Crane looks very toned down too, in addition to the creative staff. They definitely look like they’re in a slump.

      • lisbeth borden

        Harry is under-appreciated in NY. I also noticed he has been the only person watching a COLOR television (I’m pretty sure). I feel like some of the colors this season are pointing to an exodus by certain characters, to join Pete in a permanent California defection. Harry SHOULD be in CA, it only becomes more obvious every episode.

        • Kate Andrews

          Yep — except for Don buying a color TV for Megan. But he was watching a black-and-white movie on it during that episode! Harry should go start his own agency or work for one of the networks.

          • EarthaKitten

            I didn’t see where Don’s monster TV wound up in Megan’s house until seeing TLo’s screen shots– it doesn’t look as horrible as I thought it would.

            Harry has put on a few pounds which may suggest he is really unhappy — that’s what it usually means for me. : ) I’m not sure Harry will ever move on. Didn’t he fall into his current position? He’s never really exhibited the chutzpah needed to break away from SC&P and the partners see him as weak.

    • Maria Mooshil

      That you two can follow up “He’s the turd in their toilet bowl” with the reference to the Scooby-Doo lot just underscores your brilliance! HA!

    • http://redheadedwolf.wordpress.com/ Laura Renee

      YOU GUYS ARE FREAKING AMAZING.

      Two passages that were mic-drops (yes, even the gross one):

      “But she is once again dealing with a square-jawed, handsome, good-on-paper alpha male who’s secretly a mess of insecurities and who makes rash decisions that deeply affect the people around him without ever asking for their input. Don is the office version of her husband and she’s already put up with that shit once in her life. She’s not about to let another handsome, privileged man screw up her life because of his own issues. Hence the red rose dress, which is now a symbol not just of her husband, but of the ways in which the men around her have disappointed her and how she no longer puts up with it anymore. This costume actually underlines and helps to explain her anger in her scenes.”

      THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU

      And this: “Joan’s eye-popping dress kind of throws the balance off a little here, but notice how much Don’s suit stands out against the other male partners; his brown a discordant note in all that business-like grey and navy blue. He’s the turd in their toilet bowl.”

      IT’S SO TRUE!

      I notice you guys haven’t called any ongoing patterns or themes yet for this season. Admittedly, I haven’t noticed any either, but I wonder if you’re being cautious about that because last season’s blue-and-green and blue-and-yellow got carried away? Though it was totally real.

    • ScarlettHarlot

      Wasn’t Megan’s office power color yellow? Interesting she wears yellow in the scene where she finally stands up for herself and takes control of her situation.

    • schadenfreudelicious

      Akk, David James Eliott!, of course..Thanks Uncles, we just sat there going “where do we know him?”…”is it JAG guy?!”…

      • Frank_821

        no kidding. I did not realize that was him. quite a transformation

        • Munchkn

          Dayum! I did not recognize Harm out of uniform.

    • Vtg Fashion Library

      I didn’t understand Joan’s comment “I’m wearing boots.” What am I missing there, that she had to bring that up with Bert?

      • Frankie Carter

        It’d be too hard to take them off.

      • Geoff Dankert

        Bert Cooper’s office is a “shoes off” environment. Has been since the early days and his preoccupation with chinoiserie.

      • AlisonHendryx

        he wants people to take off their shoes in his asian themed office. it’d be a long process to take off boots.

        • Malia C.

          Also, she might have boot stench on her bare feet.

        • gogobooty

          Also, short skirt makes boot removal awkward.

      • Janice Bartels

        Bert doesn’t let people wear shoes in his office.

        • Glammie

          But he caved to Joan, which says something. And she stood her ground–she was not taking off those boots.

          • lbee

            Also there’s a subtle “I’m not the stripper/prostitute you all tried to make me” to that move.

            • Shawn EH

              Well, she first hovered in the door politely, knowing he would concede in a gentlemanly fashion I think. So that she didn’t appear undefferntial, but still gained admittance.

            • Glammie

              Yep. She was willing to have the conversation in the doorway, but it was that or keep the boots inside.

            • MartyBellerMask

              Tall boots are practically clothes, really, and she’s already taken her clothes off for them once. Not doing it again.

      • http://batman-news.com Stephaniekb

        Burt doesn’t let anyone wear shoes in his office. It has been one of his quirks since the beginning of the show.

        • Vtg Fashion Library

          How in the world did I miss that? Wow.

      • Chris

        He makes everyone take their shoes off in his office. He gave her a dispensation to come in with the boots but made Roger take his shoes off later. It seemed more of a power play with Roger or a punishment for the Don situation. No exceptions for Roger.

      • frcathie

        Bert won’t let anyone wear shoes in his office. Her boots would have been hard to take off, so she didn’t want to come in.

      • wuffgal

        He wants people to remove their shoes before going into his office. She did not want to because she had boots on.

    • AlisonHendryx

      I have been waiting DAYS to say this, and went through great trouble to restart my dormant disqus account to say it: Peggy in light blue is on a completely different wavelength than Don, as was Megan when he first saw her this season. I knew IMMEDIATELY on seeing her, even without recognizing the dress from those previous scenes, that she was not there to make nice.

      • mariahwg

        It’s also an icy Betty color. She was dropping some serious Betty Bitchface this ep.

      • Valdri8

        I also saw it as the color of Betty.

      • Bluebell

        Hahah! I was dying to say that too. You are so right.

        It was lilt the Don/ Megan meet up in reverse sequence: Don seemingly in the passenger seat in the cinema shot, then meeting a woman in pale blue who is not pleased to see him.

    • Mod_girl

      I WANT Bettys’ blue handbag from her “Lunch with Francine” scene–perfection!

      • MartyBellerMask

        I want Joan’s white briefcase!

    • Glammie

      Polka dots! How could I have missed Ginsberg’s loopy polka dots? Perfect.

      Still think Don’s brown suit has something to do with Dick Whitman–earthy brown was considered slightly less dressy than gray. Also Californian. Remember what a big deal it was when Reagan wore brown suits.

      Nice insight into Joan and those boots she’s not taking off. It’s funny, that rose print actually looks angry. Think Don’s a lot more competent than her ex, though. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–Joan has bad judgment regarding men. Same with Pegs. Betty’s, ironically, is better.

      Betty’s wearing pearls at a time when pearls were very out of fashion–another nice note on Jane’s part. I remember when pearls made a resurgence–1980. They haven’t been as out since, but they were way out in 1969–specifically a string of pearls a la Betty. You could do long fake hippy boho pearls, but not something like Bets.

      Crochet–yep, my grandmother crocheted things for me. So much so that when I learned to crochet this Winter (I’m a knitter.) it made me feel *old*–it’s that strong a grandma association. And that crochet shell pattern was *everywhere.* That and granny squares.

      Thanks, as always, for your perceptive take on things–it makes my hump day much more bearable.

      • http://foodycat.blogspot.co.uk/ Alicia

        I would have said 1981 – Princess Diana’s wedding was the catalyst for the pearl revival, wasn’t it?

        • Glammie

          I think Diana probably popularized the trend, but it had started before that (her engagement?). My college had, briefly, a tongue-in-cheek social columnist who wrote “Pearls, pearls for everyone!” in the Fall of 1980 and I received a string from my parents a couple of years later. They were considered very in right then, but a few years later were displaced by the South Sea pearl craze.

          • Travelgrrl

            Yup, got a strand from my First Ex Husband right around then!

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          Pearls were part of the early 80s return to more conservative classic styles after all the polyester and wild colors of the 70s. “Dress for Success” was part of it, as was “The Preppy Handbook,” and Nancy Reagan had a very conservative style (of course). I don’t remember Nancy wearing pearls, but they wouldn’t have been out of place with her outfits.

          • Lisa Petrison

            Barbara Bush (who became known as second lady in 1979) was known for wearing pearls. Fake ones, three strands.

            • Glammie

              Yep. Kenneth Jay Lane. Not that Babs couldn’t have afforded the real deal, but the fakes were to make her seem down-to-earth.

      • tallgirl1204

        I thought of Dick Whitman through this episode often also– thanks for pointing out the color connection. Jon Hamm has something he does with his face and posture when he is in Dick Whitman-fearful mode, and something different when he is in Don Draper mode. I need to watch this episode again to see who he is when– there was a lot of back-and-forth. Much of the scene in the office was Don Draper trying desperately not to become Dick Whitman, and yet there were moments when he was. (For example, going up on the elevator was a total call-back to when he was flim-flamming his way into the office early in the series– Dick Whitman ginning himself up to be Don.)

        • ikillplants

          So glad you brought that up. When Megan sounded the death knell of their marriage in LA, Jon Hamm’s expression was complete and utter Dick Whitman. Total, abject fear and loss etched onto his face. Don Draper would never let himself feel those emotions of fear, pain, regret, and ultimately, failure; those are Dick Whitman’s emotions, and to acknowledge them is to acknowledge that he will never be Don Draper. This might be an important theme to the rest of the season: Don has returned to being Dick.

        • Glammie

          Nice catch. Weiner’s said that he knew from looking at Jon Hamm that he’d grown up without a parent–and I’d guess it’s that sort of sad, vulnerable look his eyes have. I was watching him in a group interview with Emmy nominees in 2012–and his non-role face has that expression. Don Draper doesn’t. Dick Whitman and Jon Hamm do. I think we usually see young Dick Whitman in brown. It’s a lower-class/farmer color instead of that sleek gray. We’ve never seen Roger in brown and never will. So Don/Dick’s the dirt (or worse a la TLo) beneath their feet, but in some ways I think Dick/Don wants to make it on those terms.

          Hunh, I wonder if Joan is now among the Don haters just a little bit because she hates the sense of being deceived by Don’s sleek appearance. Joan’s someone’s who’s striven to climb up the social ladder herself–knowing that Don’s a whore’s son from nothing has got to be a deeply upsetting jolt for someone trying to move away from her own undistinguished background. The more class-confident men–Roger, Pete, Bert–don’t have the same issue. Pete did, but came to terms with Don when Don wooed him over to SCDP.

          I still tend to think Joan pushed Dick into Lane’s office (it’s the sort of thing she’d think about), but Don’s not Lane. He may well be his opposite.

          • MartyBellerMask

            I hadn’t thought about that, Joan’s reaction to the “real” Don/Dick. Maybe she still is the snob she used to be.

            • Glammie

              Well, TLo’s been arguing that Weiner’s point is that people don’t really change. Joan’s more open in her attitude towards women, but why would she really change? She’s always valued financial and social success and had a streak of pettiness. MM has set up an interest dynamic between Don and Joan, since he’s also had her back at various times–not just the prostitution thing, but that time they hung out in the bar and he sent her flowers.

          • T C

            Hard to say whether Don or Dick will emerge, the sliding glass door in his apartment has yet to be repaired.

      • Kit Jackson 1967

        I was born after this era. You are right on about 1980. In high-school, one girl talked about wearing pearls to a dance. She tried to explain they weren’t hideous or showy. In the conversation the phrase, “Barbara Bush pearls” was used as a form of cultural shorthand.

      • malarson2

        I was in high school in the 80s and I wore pearls every single day.

        • Travelgrrl

          There was the whole Madonna thing with ropes and ropes of pearls, too.

    • JMEL

      Regarding the woman in the restaurant: I thought she told Don she was staying in room 1217? When he knocked on the door to room 1217, Roger answered.

      • Ivanisevic

        I think all she was was that her room was on the top floor next to the elevator.

      • siriuslover

        She said she was staying on the top floor right next to the elevator. She didn’t say her room number.

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          Now that I think of it, why would she say that instead of her room number? Was there only one room next to the elevator?

          • siriuslover

            Well, I guess so it didn’t _sound_ like she was inviting him up to her room. This way, she could just say she has a “horrible room” because it’s next to the elevator and that would mean she wouldn’t be sleeping. Not that it was an invitation for him to come to her room.

            • Travelgrrl

              It was definitely an invitation to her room. Whether she was a hooker or not, I couldn’t tell.

              But Chekhov’s gun!

    • Gatto Nero

      In his scenes at the office, Don is wearing brown and orange — the SC&P logo colors.
      Maybe an unconscious signal of conciliation.

    • KayeBlue

      Oh no, Disqus ate my comment!

      I’m probably in the extreme minority here, but I hated Joan’s dress. I was born long after this time period, so I guess the style had trickled down to the way children are dressed. To my eyes, she looks like a child sitting at that table. Combined with her suddenly extremely understated makeup, Joan seems exhausted and insecure.

      Francine, on the other hand, looks thrilled and secure in her new career. Linking is probably what ate my comment, but look up T. Lo’s screencap of Francine and Betty on the day Francine figured out Carlton was unfaithful. Remember when Joan said “I learned long ago not to get all my satisfaction from this place”? Franny learned that lesson about her home life.

      • Frankie Carter

        ITA. I thought she looked washed out and the dress was slightly ridiculous. In context I guess that she was wearing a more mature version of a “baby doll” dress, though. My mother had a couple of those, although she’d wear them to things like baby showers and church, not work.

        • AZU403

          I noticed the red roses and the powerful boots, of course, but I was immediately struck by how little make-up Joan was wearing. The “natural look” had been around for a few years, but compared to the way she is usually done up it looked as if she had virtually no make-up on at all – no red lips or darkened eyes. I don’t know what if anything that signifies.

          • Frankie Carter

            I’m not going to link because Disqus will eat my comment, but the last time I remember her wearing so little makeup was in S…..3, I think? What’s-his-name had just been fired an was raising hell in the office, and she was talking to Mr. Hooker (“you can continue to handle this beautifully while I dispense psychotherapy to the girls in the pool,” or something to that effect.) No lipstick and her eye makeup was absolutely minimal. It really struck me in that scene then, but since it’s happened before, i’m not sure if it signifies much.

            • KayeBlue

              Yes, that was right before she married Dr. Douche. I can’t quite put my finger on it- she’s wearing eyeliner, lipstick, blush… Joan *never* wears white, so maybe it’s that awful Peter Pan collar. Stark white can make pink-white skin look ruddy, especially combined with indoor florescent lighting (Christina Hendricks wisely had her wedding portraits taken *outside*).

              I think she also skipped the false lashes. Too much work when she’s up at 530 AM to feed and bathe the baby before a breakfast meeting?

            • Frankie Carter

              She was also a little plumper last season, so that might be why her face is looking a bit worn now– it’s thinner.

            • KayeBlue

              Noooo, someone get her a cheese steak! You’re right, though, her arms are definitely very slender.

      • Glammie

        It’s not a good dress for Joan–it’s fashionable, but a bit discordant on her. The collar’s not flattering on her. It’s not terrible, but it’s more of a mistep for Joan than usual. Which probably also says something about her role in the meeting. Unlike Roger and Bert, she’s not thinking longterm or of the larger picture, which is SCP stagnates if they don’t have talent in the creative department and the agency doesn’t need Don down the street working for somewhere else. Joan’s being guided by her emotions–her justified anger at Don–but it’s not a productive approach.

      • L’Anne

        I didn’t like Joan’s dress either. The big contrast collar read as twee
        to me, and the gaudy necklace was too much against the print.

        I
        might be the only person to sorta defend Don. I think he treated Dawn
        as his secretary because he hasn’t an opportunity to not see her as his
        secretary. He’s out of place and isn’t familiar with the new “lay of the
        land.”

        • KayeBlue

          That’s the word! Twee. Zooey Deschanel will be wearing this tomorrow, and even her 2014 appeal is fading.

          • Travelgrrl

            Yes, but that was a very popular dress style in the late 60′s and early 70′s. She’s in fashion, for once (usually Joan dresses older than her age – look at season 1!)

        • Cabernet7

          I’m not entirely sure anyone told him she wasn’t his secretary anymore. He looked surprised that she was in (what he knew as) Joan’s office now.

        • Qitkat

          I completely agree with you about Dawn, she hadn’t had much opportunity to tell him about her advancement, and he just assumed she would be there for him when he came back to the office.

          One thing you can say about this show, it is FULL of people who make assumptions without the facts, and always has been. For an agency that thrives on communication for its livelihood, many of the characters are extremely poor at real communication amongst themselves.

        • http://www.jaimieteekell.com/ Jaimie

          Yeah, how was he supposed to know she wasn’t his secretary in reserve — wouldn’t be his secretary when he got back? He wasn’t there for her promotion. As for the clothes thing, since when do straight men ever pick up on clothing cues? I’m not sure I would have picked up on that clothing cue.

        • Travelgrrl

          I thought so, too. But to his credit, he didn’t even know she’d been promoted, I think.

        • Bluebell

          Don on the phone to Dawn reminded me of Peggy on the phone to Shirley last episode. In each case they couldn’t understand each other and the ‘boss’ ended up curtly reiterating what they wanted.

          Don doesn’t know Dawn’s role has changed. Shirley doesn’t know that Peggy had assumed Ted sent the flowers. They can’t see each other. They don’t know the other party’s assumptions. They can’t hear what the other is actually saying.

          Bi-coastal means a lot of phone calls. I think we’re going to see a lot of unsatisfactory communication this series, where the real messages are missed.

      • mariahwg

        More Francine please, especially this new incarnation. She gave me life in this episode, being all Joan Harris bitchy with a side of Peggy’s new girl.

        • KayeBlue

          She is my favorite non-main character. “I wish I had a bomb shelter, so I could slam the door in her face!”

        • French_Swede

          I wonder if Helen Bishop still lives in the neighborhood. I’d love to know what happened to her!!!

          • 3hares

            We know she’s remarried with another child now.

            • French_Swede

              How did I miss this?

            • 3hares

              Probably by not listening closely to Glen’s monotone delivery!

          • KayeBlue

            I hope she owns Francine’s travel agency!

          • Travelgrrl

            I thought she was kind of strange – with a very, very strange child.

        • sweetlilvoice

          I am so grateful to MW for bringing her back for a scene. I love her and she’s always been a character I’ve wondered about. A lot of people want to know what happened to Sal, but it was always Francine for me. And that nut who cut that guy’s foot off with the lawn mower!

          • KayeBlue

            LOISSSSS. I bet she had a complete nervous breakdown, and after a year of “Girl, Interrupted” therapy, is now a roadie for Janis Joplin.

      • ikillplants

        THANK YOU for bringing up Francine. I realized that her and Betty’s scene together was beyond a friendly gossipfest. They clearly haven’t seen each other in months, if not years, and Francine’s conversation wasn’t about how much weight Betty had lost or how spectacular she looks. It was about business.

        This was a (potential) client’s lunch. How many of them have we seen on this show?! Francine is doing quite well professionally and is beginning to reel her personal contacts into her Rolodex. Landing Harry Francis would be a major “get” for her. When Betty waved off her offer of business cards, saying that Harry’s secretary deals with travel arrangements, Francine had the perfect rejoinder: “They’ve got to book through someone,” and her hard sell: “One client told me that I re-defined his idea of first-class.” Betty, of course, interprets their whole conversation as digs at her life as a homemaker and Francine defines her arc during this episode.

        • KayeBlue

          Oooooh you are so right! I was so enthralled by her pantsuit I didn’t absorb that. Didn’t Francine even ask Betty to mention what a ‘fan’ she was of Rockefeller? Now that’s someone who books first-class.

          Betty’s got to get a career or a volunteer position, unless Henry gets political-famous and Betty can put her energy in to fancy dinner parties. I wonder what she’ll do- she can’t model anymore, she’s obviously not going to chair the PTA, she’s too icy for sales. Maybe get involved with the Red Cross?

          • ikillplants

            Ha, that would involve defrosting!! Completely agree. Didn’t she get step up her involvement with the Junior League’s conservation campaign because she had her eye on Henry? Before that, the last time she focused on side activities or hobbies was modeling for that Coke campaign and redesigning her home in Ossining.

            She’s the perfect political wife. I could see her adopting some benign cause that furthers her husband’s platform if his career takes off. I don’t see Betty headed towards a psychological reckoning–that would involve too much change, which is, as our brilliant uncles have pointed out, the major theme of the series as it wraps up. She’s just not capable of objective reflection. Tragic.

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              Betty is the perfect political wife. In a few years, I could see her as part of the anti-ERA crowd. Does Henry have a platform? Could someone remind me what his official title is at this point? I know he once mentioned a possible interest in elected office, but I don’t think he acted on it.

            • KayeBlue

              I think he’s still “political advisor”. He wants to run for Attorney General; Rockefeller was a ‘law and order’ governor, so Henry will be touting the now extremely unpopular policies of stop-and-frisk and the mandatory minimum sentencing for drug offenses.

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              Thanks! Just to be sure I have it right, he’s a political advisor to Rockefeller, correct?

          • AZU403

            She did so well when she got involved in local activism in Ossining (blocking the water tower), and briefly began to shine. I was really rooting for her.

            • MartyBellerMask

              Yeah, but she has to have the right motivation. Betty didn’t care about the water tower really, she wanted to get close to Henry. And it worked! So she really has no reason (in her mind) to continue with volunteer work. Really though, she could use a hobby, and it would probably benefit Henry’s career if she did. I’m sure she would if he asked.

      • KayEmWhy

        Spot on, I hated Joan’s dress and this style for a woman of her age. I looks quite juvenile to me and not appropriate for a woman of her position. Why is she dressed like Shirley?

        • KayeBlue

          Truth. I assume she’s taking a risk, just like her Avon account power play. Maybe she let the Meredith salesgirl of Gimbel’s pick out a ‘trendy’ dress… which looks utterly silly.

          • KayEmWhy

            Gimbel’s now that’s going way back. ;-)

      • Alice Teeple

        I loved her dress personally, but I also think that in the Mad Men sphere, it was completely inappropriate for someone who is nearly 40 on the show. An outfit like that would have set tongues wagging about “trying too hard to look young” back then. The boots also seem inappropriate for the office, especially for a woman her age. I saw that outfit as another act of desperation.

        • not_Bridget

          Perhaps Joan knows that she will always make tongues wag–no matter what she does. Perhaps she doesn’t care what the drab little secretaries think about her. She’s got a new office & is making good money. Surely her style will continue to evolve–but I’m betting she will avoid the “Dress for Success” look…..

    • housefulofboys

      Hand raised!!! I made my own crocheted skirt and vest, in horizontal stripes of orange and yellow, and bought slammin’ suede wedges with stripes in shades of orange and red to go with it. I think my obsession with combined warm/hot colors has been a life-long thing.

    • Alex Palombo

      I loved this, but when I saw Joan’s dress I noticed two things:
      1) The dead flowers, yes, but more so,
      2) The Peter Pan collar – it’s a Peggy move, and similar to the collar that Dawn wore last week. Anything to that?

      • lbee

        Me too! I’m so surprised T&L didn’t mention the collar!

      • shoneez

        I also noticed the collar! I was thinking- could show that Joan and Peggy are on the same page when it comes to Don.

    • Chris

      Joan could use some Peggy and Peggy can use some Joan in her dress. Joan always leans towards more showy looks that can occasionally border on unbusiness like. When she met with Avon the second time she had a gorgeous aqua suit but it seemed more evening like and flashy for a morning business meeting. Boots were pretty edgy and non business like at the time. I was surprised to see Shirley wearing them in the office, and I was really surprised Joan wore them for a client meeting. Peggy goes the other way. Her suits sometimes look like something a 60 year old Catholic Nun principle of a parochial school would wear. Joan needs to teach peggy about what looks good and sex appeal and Peggy needs to help Joan dress for success a little more.

      • Qitkat

        I think Joan’s boots took me aback more than her flashy dress. Notice that Burt didn’t require her to remove them in his office. She may have realized that he might not, so this gives her a subtle power shift over the men, who are still required to take off their shoes.

        • mad girl

          Exactly. And one of these days those boots are gonna walk all over…. someone.

          • EarthaKitten

            Shazam!

          • sweetlilvoice

            I had my boots on last night (yes it’s spring here but has been raining for days and I’m not ready to give up the boots yet even though we had a horrible cold winter) and my Dad was commenting on how he remembered when boots came into fashion 50+ years ago…..I told him some things were classic.

            • http://www.GiftedCollector.com/ The Gifted Collector

              My best friend went to London in 1964 and came home with gorgeous knee-high black leather boots. Wherever she wore them in LA, people always stared at them. No one had seen such a thing before.

      • KayeBlue

        I agree with you, but I think Joan would do the hula on the conference table before she’d ask Peggy for fashion advice.

        • Chris

          Absolutely. They both think they are right. It’s like that line from “When Harry Met Sally” where Carrie Fisher says “Everyone thinks they have a sense of humor and good taste but they couldn’t possibly all have good taste”.

        • Kit Jackson 1967

          I don’t see Joan asking Peggy for fashion advice at all, but isn’t the image of Peggy and Joan going shopping together delightful? Maybe it would be part of research for an account. Joan would trust Peggy not to get eager and giggly over the idea of going shopping/free clothes.

          • KayeBlue

            Aaaah that would be precious. Then Joan’s mother will move out, Peggy can move in as part-time babysitter. She’ll take Baby Kevin out in his stroller, where he’ll draw in new clients with his chubby cheeks and preternatural ability to mix whiskey sours (he is Roger’s kid).

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              Peggy is not giving up her job. She and and Joan could share an apartment, but they’d need to hire someone to take care of Baby Kevin, it just wouldn’t be someone who lives there.

          • Chris

            I gave up hope that they would ever be that kind of friends in the first or second season. Something about Peggy still seems to rub Joan the wrong way. Even after Peggy helped Joan out with Avon, Joan saw trouble with the aspirin ad and never said anything to Peggy, just to Don. They have had a couple of brief moments where they connected but they are so fundamentally different they seem like they will never mesh.

      • EarthaKitten

        I know what you mean but Peggy’s style deviated from her Nun-look last year on a number of occasions. But she is now far away from the woman in the plaid pantsuit we saw in the last frame of Season 7.

        • Chris

          Yes when Peggy was happy and in love with Ted she was dressed and styled beautifully. Now they are expressing her unhappiness with her appearance.

    • http://batman-news.com Stephaniekb

      What immediately stood out to me about Joan’s outfit was her much more (to us) youthful profile. Looks like the heavy girdle/matronly bra she wore is finally gone, and she seems to be less “padded” in general. Seems she’s trying to recapture her youth and fashionableness at the very moment that she’s rising to a place of power unusual for a woman in the times.

      • Frankie Carter

        I think Christina’s lost some weight as well. Which shows in her face– it looks thinner, as well as a little more washed out.

    • Frankie Carter

      Are they still padding January Jones, or has she put on a few pounds? She was looking very busty in the nightgown scene where she’s cuddling Gene and a bit thick round the middle eating with Francine (maybe it’s the dress.)

      What, no commentary on the braless teacher? LOL.

      On the farm trip Bobby looked like an illustration from a Beverly Cleary book (the original illustrations, that is.) LOVED his outfit. I half expected Ribsy to come over and help him finish those gumdrops. :)

      • Janice Bartels

        But if Bobby were Henry Higgins, Betty would kick Ribsy.

        • Frankie Carter

          I just want to thank you for making me laugh out loud at work. An entire room full of students studying for finals just looked up to stare at me. :-/

      • KayeBlue

        Maybe! They probably wanted her to look extra “maternal”. To make it work in the story, we could assume she’s wearing an industrial-strength girdle to impress Francine and to be ‘respectable’ at the field trip.

      • Cabernet7

        Speaking of Bobby and Gene, how amazing is the casting of the Draper children! After how many Bobbies, this one looks like a little male, brown-haired January Jones. Gene looks like a little blond Jon Hamm. Kiernan Shipka is a perfect blend of the 2 of them. Seems like only Kiernan Shipka can actually act, though. (But Bobby did a passable job in this episode. Maybe there’s hope for him yet).

      • snarkykitten

        I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed that! I wasn’t sure how to ask about it tactfully.

    • Qitkat

      Turd-brown is the perfect description of Don’s suit. I hope he never wears it again. Not a flattering shade, and it is so out-of-place around everyone else’s clothing. Deliberately so, he is trying so very hard to regain his former confidence, but the echoing back and forth between his sitting at home, and appearing in the office, only to be relegated to that room all day, everyone passing by, passing in and out, and there he waits, not knowing if they are finally going to flush him away, or if he will even have an office to call his own again. That suit signals an uncertain man, a tentative man, a man who is completely at the mercy of the other partners. No wonder it is the color of dog poop, he is the guy they just want to scrap off the bottom of their shoes.

      • AZU403

        Hearkening back to his sons, Don hanging out in the workroom looked as if he were in a kindergarten room.

        • Qitkat

          I’ll bet he felt that way too, small, diminished, waiting to be told when it was his turn.

          • Shawn EH

            But at least he could play with the fun kids who liked him!

      • Bluebell

        The other men in the lift with Don on his way in to SC&P were all dressed in a very similar way to him. It was unnerving, almost spooky. This is DON DRAPER, and he’s just one of the crowd!?

        There was a similar moment when we saw him arrive at LA airport in Ep 1. There were a lot of men around Don all dressed more or less the same as him.

        I guess when you stop the lies about being an infallible superhero and own up to your faults, then you do admit that you are just like everyone else. Accepting yourself and others as being all too human is the only way to enjoy close, satisfying relationships – and that’s where some of life’s greatest beauty is. But first you have to give up the lie of being special.

    • DailyDose

      is Betty having eating disorder? Bobby traded her lunch, he said “I didnt know you were going to eat it” –when they went home, she did not have dinner. “I am not hungry”, she said to Henry.

      • 3hares

        Betty’s always had issues with eating. Bobby knows that sometimes she skips meals and that was his justification for giving away the sandwich. Later when Betty said she wasn’t hungry it was just to twist the knife into Bobby, like he’d ruined things so much she still didn’t want to eat. I don’t think there’s any storyline about her being anorexic or anything. It’s just always been a way her issues manifest themselves.

        • KayeBlue

          It probably wouldn’t cross the diagnostic line into anorexia (which… was that a codified disorder in ’69?) because Betty’s not very underweight, but she’s a hardcore dieter. Rare is the 37-year-old mother of three (with no exercise routine to speak of) who can shed and keep off a substantial amount of weight in under a year.

          • 3hares

            Right, I think the show’s made it clear that food is never just food to Betty. She’s usually a hardcore dieter and also put on a lot of weight in a short period of time. Even when she was pregnant, iirc, Don was alarmed at how she starved herself to not gain weight. I just don’t think her not eating is a clue to a story, it’s just part of the pattern.

          • Not applicable

            I think anorexia had been around since the 1800s as a diagnosis. The condition was noted by doctors noticing that women of means were starving themselves. The ‘nervosa’ part connotes that it was considered a ‘nervous condition’ but as we know now, it is much more complex than that. There was a resurgence of the disease in the late 60s/70s. Media scholars will attribute this to the rise of print advertising featuring uber-thin models like Twiggy as the new ideal. But obviously, Better got her cues much earlier than that– from her mother no less– and developed her disordered thinking and likely body dysmorphia as a result. It’s a very complex disease– I don’t mean to over simplify at all.

            • L’Anne

              For anyone interested, Joan Jacobs Brumberg’s book Fasting Girls is a fascinating historical study of the history and meanings of anorexia in the US.

            • malarson2

              I think you are spot-on here. From what I know – I’ve never suffered through this myself, but my sorority in college had a bathroom set aside JUST so girls could go in there and purge their food – eating disorders are all about control. Betty feels like she has no control over her own life – in this episode alone she only talks about her husband’s job, her kids don’t connect with her, her good friend is moving past her and into the work force – but controlling what she does and doesn’t eat is something she CAN do. I think that’s why she was so mad at Bobby for giving away her sandwich: it wasn’t as much about her not having the sandwich as it was about her not being to control whether or not she ate the sandwich.

            • Not applicable

              yes- you’re absolutely right. A lot of people assume the disorder is about vanity- but it’s really about control. To your point, young women– often times very intelligent, type A women (like Betty)– who feel like they have no control over their lives often realize that controlling their body by denying food is a very powerful thing. So, while it can begin as a body issue thing- the girls who tip into really disordered thinking usually have a lot more going on in the background. I don’t think Betty is anorexic at all- but she’s certainly got issues!

            • stonecoldcuddlewhore

              As an armchair psychologist with only a history of eating disorder treatment to guide me, if Betty fell through a time worm hole and ended up in 2014 as 1969 Betty and then went straight to the psychiatrists office, she’d be EDNOS – eating disorder not otherwise speificed. Disordered eating, anorexic behavior but without the loss of menses, as well as moments of binging but without the frequency and purging associated with bulimia.

            • KayeBlue

              I respectfully disagree. No one (at least no one fashionable) publicly chain-smokes like that anymore, so Betty would be a Gwyneth Paltrow GOOP all-organic-micro-nutrient-kale-smoothie-drinker. She’d be held up as a paragon of health on 900 calories per day.

            • stonecoldcuddlewhore

              That’s why I said 1969 Betty fell into a worm hole and went straight to a psych office…she wouldn’t know from Goop.

            • Glammie

              Your sorority bathroom–my God, that’s insane.

            • malarson2

              It was. Like everyone KNEW not to use it for other, normal, regular reasons. Girls slunk in there with the oddest combo of embarrassment and joy. SO messed up. Especially to a girl like me who spent all four years (who am I kidding? Five years plus two summer schools…) swilling beer and eating pizza. I just never was a girl to starve myself. For any reason. But I also was taught that I could make my own decisions – with gentle guidance – and I wasn’t lacking for attention from my family. I shudder to think what girls who fall to that disorder have had done/said to them. SO sad.

            • stonecoldcuddlewhore

              Control and a good dose of self flagellation as well.

            • KayeBlue

              Yes- I’m sure you agree that actual anorexia/bulimia is about control, not food. It’s a mental illness, not a diet gone too far. Betty’s not trying to diet down to 85 lbs, she’s trying to keep off 50 lbs. Leads to a lot of the same behaviors, but I don’t think Betty has body dysmorphia. She knows exactly how she looks and that’s how society wants her to look.

        • Gatto Nero

          Betty’s mother nagged her about her weight as a child, so being slim is a crucial part of her psychological makeup.

        • Not applicable

          i was going to mention the same thing. In prior Betty scene she didn’t eat her salad with Francine (or didn’t look like she ate much) and then agrees to split coffee cake. I’m betting she let Francine eat most of it– “Petty Betty” doing what she does best.

      • http://www.nouvellegamine.com Jordan Wester

        Betty’s been shown to have an eating disorder from pretty close to the beginning. There’s a scene where her father says that her mother sent her to a “fat camp” when she was a kid. She came back thin. Betty’s mother was atrocious.

    • texashistorian

      Due to your schooling, I was able to ferret out a great deal in this episode’s “unspoken” dialogue. Joan’s rose-dress and Betty’s salmon dress both show how out of place they are, as does Don’s suite when he is inside Megan’s apartment (he looked so aged and lost). I remember how much Betty reacts like a child – her friendship with Glen, for example – and she did so, once again, at the farm. Don and the Agent’s treatment of Megan also recalls how he and the psychiatrist talked about Betty’s treatment behind her back. SO much is hidden in plain sight with this show, and once again I want to thank TLo for their hard work in helping me absorb it all, and doing it so well that they can juxtapose Scooby Doo with Mad Men and make it make sense!

      • Kate Andrews

        Oh, and I just looked up the wikipedia page on Scooby, and it started airing in 1969. So spot on!

      • ikillplants

        I was also reminded of Don’s clandestine conversations with Betty’s psychiatrist. So many callbacks within this show.

      • Bluebell

        The scenes in Megan’s apartment showed up how Don and Megan’s NY apartment and the LA one are both about the view. I don’t think anyone else has a home which is like that.

        Is it that Don and Megan still have more in common than it seems? Is it just that Meg chose both of those homes? Is it that as a couple, no matter what, they just always looked so good.

        I hope Don, Stan&Peggy, Ted, Pete, Harry and maybe Ginzo end up in LA running the shop. Joan and Roger can stay in NY with their baby and run the show there with Ken Cosgrove. Don and Megan can live in a lovely house by the ocean with Anna’s niece dropping by at weekends and the kids visiting for summer.

        On the other hand, Megan wasn’t wearing her wedding ring when she was on the phone with Don. Oh, we’ll.

    • Lucinda Head

      I *love* the work Don’s brown suit and orange/blue tie does here: 1) picks up the browns and beiges in Stan and Ginsburg’s clothes: he sharpens, elevates, leads creative; 2) clashes with the establishment blue/grey of the male partners; and 3) is rooted in the color story of Dawn’s outfit: his unheralded, vital support.

    • tristanrobin

      haven’t enjoyed a blog posting online in a long time – terrific!

    • Paula Pertile

      I didn’t have that crocheted outfit, but my Barbie did (kind of). My grandma knit and crocheted a whole entire fabulous wardrobe of outfits with wee tiny little hats and purses even. Some pieces were ‘older’ styles, but it was all fantastic.

      We had those EXACT little plastic fruit magnets on our fridge!

      Thanks for the great recap. I always look forward to these.

    • Anne

      I think Betty’s field trip look ranks up there with some of the great gasp-worthy Betty looks.

      Also, I would wear Peggy’s dark green dress. I thought that was an interesting departure from what she’s been wearing lately–a little less fussy, no knee socks, very sophisticated (to my eye, anyway), and not a color we see her in very often.

    • Capt. Renault

      Thanks, T-Lo. You’re teaching us so much, each and every week.

    • ashtangajunkie

      Jinkies, this is a good post. The fact that Don noticed that Dawn has an office but still treated her like a secretary irked me. It didn’t surprise me at all, but it still irked me. I was wondering if Joan’s red rose dress had to do with Don, but I was mostly taken with how gorgeous she looked in those scenes. Her updos are so spectacular. I loved Francine’s suit.

      • NinaBoo

        I see what you did there.

    • yllas

      I’m still mulling over Joan’s roses dress. She’s wearing trendy boots, the hemline is short(er), it looks A-line, there is white collar and cuffs. (I must have had half a dozen similar little dresses myself, which I wore in high school in the late 60′s! so I am thrilled to death!) Joan looks quite trendy and updated, but not ridiculously so (with her figure, well, she’s no Twiggy) – maybe the style is more modern but the roses print grounds her firmly as Our Joan?….I didn’t like Ginsberg’s spotted beige shirt, it gave me the creeps, like bugs crawling all over!…..DON in a BROWN suit?? that was odd. Odd man out, in an office of men in steely blue/gray/black?….and….that’s all I got.

      • AZU403

        Ginsberg always looks schleppy. Even now that he has risen in his field he still looks schleppy.

        • Shawn EH

          I’d take his oversized cardigans over Lou’s creepy ones any day, however.

      • Valdri8

        I totally took the brown suit as the whole “color of shit” thing. I cannot believe that I did not come up with the turd in the punchbowl, as that was one of my Dad’s favorite sayings

    • Tom Phillips

      Don’t you think Joan’s red rose-patterned mini-dress with the large white bib collar (and high black boots) was almost identical to what Peggy’s secretary wore last week? Was it a gesture of solidarity, an identification? Another way of showing how wronged and misunderstood she feels?

      • Kate Andrews

        Ooh, good call. There is something with that outfit. I was saying to a couple of friends that I’d totally wear Joan’s whole look to my office, except for the peter pan collar. It stood out to me more than any other look this week, even Megan’s crochet monstrosity (sorry, but so ugly in my book!).

        • http://bidonica.wordpress.com/ Poggy

          yeah, I almost never covet Joan’s clothes – they look good on her but they are mostly not my stile (I also don’t have her figure so there’s that), but this one I would have totally stolen. I know many disagree on this point, but to me it looked edgy without being entirely inappropriate for the workplace, based on the much shorter skirts the younger employees are wearing. And those boots – I loved them. They even defeated Bert! ;)

      • Shawn EH

        Except Shirley was rocking a far shorter skirt, which makes a big difference. She had a baby doll vibe which Joan avoids. Joan never apologizes for her figure, but I don’t see many mini-skirts in her future.

    • LCTerrill

      Objectively, Don’s last ensemble was terrible, but I actually loved it for the fact that it was TRENDY! I feel like this bodes well for his character, since he has consistently been the Man Out Of Time.

      And while I understand their frustrations, I was irritated in the extreme with Peggy and Joan this week.

    • kduffin7

      Fabulous, insightful post as always – but where was a mention of Lou’s diabolical, hideous, old-man cardigans? Is it because you consider him to be so insignificant as to be unworthy of comment? I would love to know your take on them…

      • DeniseSchipani

        I see the cardigans and his glasses on the chain as a way he may, at first, look like a kindly uncle or a professor, but it masks his malevolence. He was lurking and very, very angry in this episode, yelling at Shirley to get Jim Cutler on the phone, and threatening Cutler with the terms of his contract. He LOOKS like he should be kindly (and he’s the only business character ever who’s not worn a suit to work; in fact the cardigan and the glasses chain are pretty old-lady secretarial, right), but he’s a river of simmering anger. Plus mediocrity.

        • kduffin7

          So agree, Denise. Would just add ‘plus impotence’ at the end of your summation.

        • Alanna

          I’m really curious why Lou Avery left (or was fired from) Dancer Fitzgerald. I know that people switched agencies quite often both then and now, but is that very common for senior executives of his age?

        • Alice Teeple

          He actually reminds me a little bit of Ida Blankenship: somewhat inept, contemptuous of everyone, glasses on a chain, can’t be bothered to make an effort.

          • DeniseSchipani

            Maybe he’ll die at his desk like she did!

            • Munchkn

              One can only hope!

          • SonOfSaradoc

            So …. Lou’s the KING of sexual perversions?

      • http://darlinglola.blogspot.com Laura K

        I always get an “Angry Mr. Rogers” vibe from Lou. Must be the powder blue cardigans.

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          LOL! Angry Mr. Rogers! Perfect! “It’s an ugly day in the neighborhood….”

      • http://bidonica.wordpress.com/ Poggy

        lol, every time I see Lou I can’t help being half amused, half slightly horrified that he looks JUST LIKE a man I met when I was working at my local library – he was (and is) in charge of organizing cultural day trips aimed mostly at the elders, though anyone could tag along. His face, build and even the clothes were 100% Lou, though thankfully he’s never been that annoying, save maybe for forcing us poor interns to type down his overlong handwritten descriptions for the trips he planned :)

        Bottom line: Lou’s clothes are spot on Old Averagely Educated Man Clothes, in 1969 as well as almost fifty years later.

    • lisbeth borden

      I like this take on Joan’s rose dress; I thought it could also be another switcheroo—like how purple was her heartbreak color, now maybe not. She was powerless with those roses before, now she taking the bull by the horns (or rose by the thorns).

      There was such a multi-layered aspect to the Don/Megan California scenes. In a way, her ultra-modern, screaming color print is positive and fun, while his outdated black & white makes Don seem completely out-of-touch with HER and the changing world. In another way though, the costume incongruity makes him looks stable, and Megan looks like a flake. (The costume difference reminded me that this is also the time when TV sets were changing from b&w to COLOR.)

      I definitely noticed Don word SC&P colors back to work. He may have wanted to play it cool, but he wears his heart on his suit when he goes back to the office.

      Once again, Jim is a sleek shark and Roger is dressed like a dandy old Englishman.

      • P M

        OMG Jim as a shark! And the animal skin in his office – the man likes trophies? Is the partnership/agency his prey?

        • lisbeth borden

          I definitely think they’re trying to show that Jim is a predator. Yes!
          From his ridiculous short-sightedness about Harry’s contributions, and with the agency looking busy & successful, Jim looks more egotistical and power-hungry in his shit-stirring than making good decisions for the agency.

    • TheDivineMissAnn

      Plants. Another difference between the LA and NYC scenes. In the agent’s office there are houseplants lining the window area, in Megan’s house there are plants inside and out on the patio. On the opposite coast, there is only one lonely potted plant in the conference room, and it looks like it could be plastic.

      Life in LA is more fresh, more alive.

      • AZU403

        When anyone brings flowers, a disaster lurks.

    • katiessh

      the analysis for joan’s dress is on point, and definitely explains her bullheadness towards Don’s return. God that blue dress really makes Peggy look dowdy, probably fitting in with her newly found unpleasant personality. I can’t help but hope against hope when they throw moments like stan taking her hand though.

      • Chris

        I remember thinking that blue outfit was kind of cute last year when she wore it, especially the youthful sleeveless dress under it. Now all buttoned up with that hair and makeup it looks very matronly and unflattering.

    • rkdgal

      You had me with “turd in the toilet bowl.” And he keeps popping back up, doesn’t he? :) (sorry…I have the sense of humor of an 11-year-old boy.)

    • TerryMarie

      When I was a young lawyer in the early 1980′s, “they” taught us youngsters never to wear a brown suit. Brown, we were told, was NOT a powerful color, and therefore completely inappropriate for a hot-shot litigator. That was what I thought about when I saw Don: in his brown, he is taking a subordinate position to the other men in the office.

      • KayeBlue

        Yep. And the Lord said, “brown suits are for losers”.

      • 28fairplay

        Except earthtones were up-to-the-minute and actually tie him to Ted, the head of creative.

      • Robin Murray

        Interesting observation. I was born in ’63, and it seems that, almost overnight (1979?) earth tones went from being desirable to being verboten. Suddenly, everything was black, white and neon. Suits were navy, grey or black, often pinstriped. I remember wearing multiple sets of shoulder pads to get the desirable “female linebacker” look.

        However, in 1969 I believe a brown suit was still considered appropriate. At least it didn’t have the “loser” connotations it would certainly have in 1981. I still think it’s very effective to put Don in a brown suit at a table filled with mostly cool-toned suits, but I wonder if that is because we are projecting our knowledge of how the brown suit will be perceived in 10-15 years.

      • Teresa

        Someone said the other day that the brown referred to the botched Hershey account.

      • fitzg

        I came up in the early 90′s and have always been told that juries trust a lawyer in a brown suit. That also works here – he’s trying to get his foot back in the door and is saying “look at how trustworthy I am now.”

      • Kathryn Sanderson

        “Dress for Success,” the highly influential book about business attire that came out in the late 70s, discussed the most powerful and “business-like” colors. One on the author’s tactics was to test different colors and styles with focus groups. He found that the colors that tested best in most major cities were grays and blues. Brown tested poorly, except in Detroit.

    • KarenFK

      My mom made me just the vest, not the skirt — but it was that exact shade of yellow! I was so excited when I saw it.
      One thing that stood out to me was Don’s black suit in the meeting with the guys from Wells Rich Green and on the phone with Megan. It was so severe and such a contrast to all the color around him. It also seemed unusually stark for him. The shades of his other suits in this episode were not so harsh.

    • KinoEye

      I want everything Joan is wearing, and she’s been working some serious coat porn this season. I love it.

      Conversely, that blue suit is horribly ill-fitted for Peggy. One of my least favorite looks she’s ever worn. I much prefer the MTM/military drag.

      • Gatto Nero

        Dawn is wearing Peggy’s old power color — gold/yellow. And Peggy is wearing almost the opposite (on the color wheel).

    • Noah

      I thought for sure the woman in the restaurant was the stewardess from the plane that hit on him while he was flying out to see Megan. But maybe I’m wrong?

      • BluesD

        Not the same person, though they look similar. Don remembers the stewardess and calls her by name (Tricia). The woman at the restaurant introduces herself as Emily.

        • Noah

          Ah, good catch! Thanks!

          • 28fairplay

            All the beautiful blonds are hot for him. Brunettes too, last week. Don has still “got it”.

    • MilaXX

      I didn’t have the skirt, but all the gals in my school were making the crocheted vest and matching hat.

    • ThaliaMenninger

      I love what you’ve done here with Dawn and what her clothes signify. And Joan, for that matter. Oddly enough, I wore a dress very much like Joan’s to a school dance in 1972. It looks like a dressy dress, not an office dress, to me. But I was in Illinois, not in NYC, and in the suburbs, not the city. My mom was a secretary and office manager all through the 70s, and she dressed much more like Dawn is dressed here, exactly as you have pointed out, although I think most of her clothes were poly double-knits. She did wear pants to work, as well as a lot of shift dresses with jackets and pant suits. Ah, polyester double-knit. You really sunk the 70s all by yourself.

      • 28fairplay

        Joan is now truly an executive as well as a partner. Her dress is fashion forward but covered up and definitely “daytime”. It is a feminine equivalent to the polished suits the male partners are wearing.

        • Shawn EH

          It’s the feminine equivalent to David James Elliot or the Hollywood agent, but not to the men in her actual office, even Roger. She’s cutting edge.

    • CatherineRhodes

      My take on Joan’s red rose dress is that she’s now “in love” with her work. The whole symbolism with the roses is that when they were big and bright, she was happy in love. She’s a partner, she’s an accounts man — she’s never been happier. She’s married to her job.

      • P M

        Given that her clothes are now in re-interpretation mode, I like your explanation.

    • Bobbie_Loblaw

      1) Betty is wearing a dress with coordinated ice-blue shoes and bag, while Francine is wearing a PANTSUIT, while discussing mothers in the workforce. Francine may as well have said “Girl, you so 1960-LATE!”

      2) Have you ever seen someone so poorly dressed for a field trip at the farm? We know Betty has riding clothes!

      3) I assumed the girl who showed up in Don’s dinner meeting was one of his anonymous hook-ups from back in the day, signaling his inability to escape the baggage of his old life.

      4) On the day Don went back to SCP, I noted blue and yellow on both Dawn (blue blazer over gold blouse) and Roger (blue suit, yellow tie). Peggy is also in pale blue. Bert and Jim are in grey. Joan is the odd one out, in black and red. I think battle lines are being drawn for a secession or a coup. Team Don includes Roger, Dawn, and Peggy. Team Jim includes at least Bert and Lou. Joan is up in the air, as is the rest of the copy staff (though I can’t imagine them on Team Jim).

      • tallgirl1204

        I forgot about the riding clothes– that would have been a better choice! I think Betty calculated her outfit to impress the other parents and the teachers and even the kids, and when that failed (not being allowed in the barn while smoking), she drank the milk to get back into the “look at me” mode. I wonder if she wished that it was still yesterday, too.

      • Uncivil_Servant

        I agree on the battle lines being drawn. If Jim (and his other previous partner Ted) wanted the/an agency for themselves they would have to buy out the carry-over SCDP partners UNLESS the agency shed accounts, or continues to do so, leading to a scenario of either cutting staff or dissolving the agency (getting rid of SC&P without the buyout). Hiring a schmuck as creative director makes getting and holding clients harder. Also, things like making Pete hand his accounts to more Jim-loyal members like Bob makes other partners unhappy. Unhappy partners more likely to dissolve agreement. Then, as struggle for accounts appears get accounts people on YOUR side. Joan = accounts holder. Roger = none. Cooper = None. Don = none. Pete = as few as they can possible let him have. Why else would Ted not be head of creative with Peggy as Deputy in NY filtering final ideas to ted?

        • Bobbie_Loblaw

          It’s an excellent point that “Team Don” will have to pull on people with actual accounts in order to make a go of it. What about Ken Cosgrove? He looks busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest. I bet he’d go Team Don. He has no loyalty to the Jim crowd.

          I think that while Lou is an uninspiring creative director, he appears to give the clients what they want, which won’t win Clio’s, but is good for business. I also get the sense that many of their clients are squeezing them on costs, so the sort of brilliant creative work of Don, Peggy, Ginsburg is not perceived as valuable.

          • Uncivil_Servant

            It just seems that they are willing to let quality slide and have it hurt their pocketbooks. Jim (whose blue suit looks more and more like sharkskin color grey with blue tints) was absolutely on board for spending money FOR Harry, yet not liking or wanting Harry. He wants to spend money and affect the bottom line, bot not to point of paying off partners. (Instantly ok with spending harry money, instantaneous promotions for Joan and Dawn). Ken is an odd one as he respects old Don yet was not seemingly “hungry” enough for them to try and grab first time they split. I think Ken could go either way. Still, the whole mediocrity of Lou should scream meaning when they have Ted, who was dual creative director with Don. Don gets pushed aside and they bring in Captain of the Titantic Lou to do the work. Jim & Ted are used to being 1/3 partners and not less than 1/7th partners (Jim & Ted, Don, Cooper, Sterling, and Campbell, with Joan as a 5% share). Jim went from ghost in the machine to shark suit man.

          • Uncivil_Servant

            Something ate my first reply. I think Ken could go either way honestly but his position (as head of accounts) even though Pete and Roger could have that position was a Jim maneuver to get Ken on their side. Ken also remembers being not asked by Don last time there was a split as they went after the hungrier and upset Campbell. Lou strikes me as a useless lump and people know it – he was a promotion from another place so they knew what he was – even though when Don was there there were TWO creative heads – him and Ted. Suddenly Don is on the outs and Ted doesn’t take over, even if in LA strikes me as a purposeful plan. I think Lou is costing them business as they mention they don’t like how they are being talked about which heavily implies other firms are poaching/trying to poach their clients. Few dared that when Draper was in charge of creative.

      • Susan Collier

        Remember how Betty and Francine gossiped about the new divorcee neighbor and her pants? “Where is she going?”

        • Bobbie_Loblaw

          Betty’s such a bitch. I effing love it.

      • VeryCrunchyFrog

        “signaling his inability to escape the baggage of his old life.”

        And what’s worse, he may have drunkenly introduced himself as Dick Whitman. Notice that he doesn’t say his name to her.

    • judybrowni

      The horror of the macrame vest!

      Hated them in the 70s, and on their recent return.

      And that macrame skirt! Ugh, which makes Megan’s ass look a mile wide (how in the world?)

      The minute I saw Joan in that Peter Pan color, I thought “the angry roses dress!”

    • BrooklynBomber

      Now show of hands: how many people can say the same thing? Because this look was ALL OVER the early to mid-seventies. I sure do remember those crocheted vests. Oy. LOVE the Scooby Doo reference.

    • 28fairplay

      What I’m still pondering is why the show, which is such a stickler for detail that Don’s watch gave the date of the episode -31- featured a country scene that looked much more like early June than late march in the northeast, and dressed everyone in spring clothes that would not be worn for at least another month?

      • Thom-Cat

        there was a large time jump in this episode to april of 1969. it may have been unusual seasonal weather going on at the time. matt weiner has discussed how they reference weather charts down to the date and in-climate weather. it may have been warming up and people were excited to finally put a little spring in their clothes. i know i do, with the slightest hint of risen temperature.

        • 28fairplay

          In actuality is was quite cold in real life in 1969, based on weather tables of the date, and it’s not even Easter yet, which is when those spring outfits tend to make their first appearance.

          • ybbed

            Somebody looked it up on another site and on that day, I think it was 3/31/69 it was in the mid seventies.

            • http://www.GiftedCollector.com/ The Gifted Collector

              Ooh, I was in the hospital having had my first baby on the 27th. I remember that Easter was that weekend because my husband brought me lilies.

            • 28fairplay

              According to the Weather Underground site the high was 37 degrees , which was actually below the average of 54 degrees. But even if the temp had reached 70 on that one day the countryside would not yet have been in full summer foliage.

      • VeryCrunchyFrog

        I think Don’s meeting at SC&P must have taken place on March 31, given (as you noted) the references to 31 on Don’s watch and on the calendar in Peggy’s office. Plus the issue of Time magazine he read in the work room was the Ike memorial — Ike had just died on March 28, and I’m sure the memorial issue would have been out by March 31. The weather (and fullness of leaves on the trees) are a bit off for that time of year. Online weather almanacs show that is was unseasonably warm (high of 70) on Saturday, March 29, but back to fairly chilly on March 31.

    • BethR52

      I’m looking forward to what
      Don’s outfits tell us
      once he starts back to work.

    • lojoso

      I want Betty’s blue handbag!

    • KayeBlue

      Most bullshit line of the episode: Megan claiming not to care that Don’s still getting paid. Oh, I’m sure she doesn’t care, given that she supported herself for what, 3 years tops between college and marriage? Don will probably hand her enough to live on til 2050 in alimony, which is good considering she’s unemployed and spending money like water. Hope she knows how to crotchet her own vests!

      P.S. I am SO confused by Peggy’s suit. The buttons are all unbuttoned, but it looks like the sleeves are attached? So the collar is attached to a shell underneath?

      • Mod_girl

        Peggy’s suit was a sleeveless shift(or top/skirt) with the collar, and the jacket was collar-less. She wore it in Season 6 “A Man with a Plan” and you can see pics in the Mad Style for that Ep.

      • P M

        Ouchie on Megan. She’s not saying that she doesn’t care about money; she’s trying to tell him it’s the lying and deceit that she’s upset about. He didn’t tell her the truth, she felt very isolated from him, and he had truly bad timing in being honest with her.

        • KayeBlue

          Yeah, I just can’t stand her. I’m glad she has a career, but she’s completely oblivious to how spoiled she is.

    • T. Sticks

      Love Peggy’s dark green dress! The light blue color is so pretty on her but the fit of the jacket is horrible! Probably on purpose.

      I immediately thought of Pat Nixon when I saw Betty and Francine in all that pastel polyester! That whole scene in the restaurant was perfect, from the conversation about women’s roles shifting to the clothes to the food! Yes, so Betty, with the untouched chef’s salad!

      Also love the Dawn outfits signaling her rise to power! Joan’s painting has been replaced by a bunch of demographic charts and papers on the wall behind her desk.

      Love Joan’s dress, Peter Pan collar, and boots! Go Joan!

      Am I the only one who thinks all the foreshadowing of Megan being “off,” from her crying about not getting a role to her agent calling to complain about her behavior to Don, may be leading to her attempting suicide? I know the Manson foreshadowing is also there, but something about the way they’re portraying her as desperate now and how alone she seems makes me think she might try it. Plus the dangling phone in the “preview”??

      Thanks, TLo, for the Scooby Doo reference. You are so right!

      • lisbeth borden

        Peggy’s turning 30, and she’s not feeling pretty OR professionally appreciated. I thought the dumpy blue suit perfectly illustrated how dumpy her life is now. Also everything was so plain for Peggy this time, not even plaid. I wonder if Peggy’s color is being sucked out like the rest of creative.

      • Cabernet7

        I also sort of wondered if Megan was suicidal, but there have already been 2 suicides on this show (both of which Don blames himself for), so I don’t think they’d go to that well a 3rd time.

        • Bluebell

          Interesting point about the previous two suicides and Don blaming himself. Both Adam and Lane succeeded in taking their own lives. Maybe Megan will make a suicide attempt but survive, maybe Don gets to help this time.

      • tallgirl1204

        I loved the top-stitching on Peggy’s green dress. My mom used to top-stitch everything during that era. I actually gasped when I saw it– she was so perfectly dressed both for herself and for the office– and then it fell apart when Don showed up.

    • wuffgal

      One thing I have not seen posted is the comment by Ginsburg when he catches Don about to leave the office. Ginsburg says, almost under his breath, something to the effect of “man you smell good!” to Don. What guy says that to another guy?

      • judybrowni

        Ginzberg!

        Who apparently doesn’t have a filter, for his fly-by comments (remember the “gloomy masturbation” line to Peggy?)

        • siriuslover

          This week, he again got the glare of death from Stan when he was rude to Peggy. Just before they went to Lou’s office, Ginsburg says something obnoxious about Playtex and Peggy glares at him, Stan holds out his hand to help Peggy up, she walks away, and Stan gives him the Stan glare. All those looks this season mean something. Or maybe nothing at all. I was a Peggy / Ted gal (and in some ways I still am. I think they’re both still in love with each other. Note that Peggy says that “I’ll never do better than St. Joseph’s.” An ad she worked very closely with Ted on. St. Joseph’s = Ted here?), but there’s a nice dynamic between her and Stan. And he’s kinda hot.

          • Alice Teeple

            Good point that she notes she’ll never do better than that ad/Ted Chaough. But that line is also nearly identical to one Stan said when he first arrived at SCDP in “Waldorf Stories”: “I’ll never do anything as good as the KKK ad.” I’ve also noticed that Stan has consistently been wearing brick red – Peggy, too. Peggy had that brick coat in the scene in the kitchenette, and Stan had the brick red tie. In the scene where he was butting heads with Don over moving to California, Stan was wearing a brick red turtleneck. And in this scene, under all that Creative Stifle Beige, he was wearing…a brick turtleneck, and he butted heads with Lou Avery. Stan is a loyal friend to Peggy, and he’s always been much more savvy when it comes to office politics: he called out Ginsberg before she even hired him, for instance. When Lou attacked Stan for doing artwork and costing the company money, that would have been a major red flag that creative would be moving south under Lou’s regime – at a time where in the big picture, creative advertising was taking off like gangbusters. That Lou made a jab at Stan for being a woman’s subordinate would have pissed him off even more. I have a feeling something with Stan and Peggy is about to happen – not necessarily a romance, although that is also possible, but a creative alliance of some sort.

            • siriuslover

              LOVE THIS ANALYSIS, Alice Teeple!!!

            • Shawn EH

              Except I thought Stan’s glare was for Peggy, who said something bitchy after he helped her up with his gallant gesture.

            • siriuslover

              Maybe, though he was looking at Ginsburg and Peggy had already passed by. I wouldn’t think he was close enough with Ginsburg to give a commiserating stare.

            • elevan

              It was TOTALLY for Ginsberg. Peggy already walked away.

              You could tell Stan was also upset with him for the masturbation comment in the elevator in Ep. 2

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              What amazing insight into the connectionb between them demonstrated through color. Hopefully, the creative alliance will lead to romance. Seriously, it’s embarrassing and a tiny bit pathetic, but I have been shiping Stan and Peggy since “Waldorf Stories.” After that night in the hotel room, I knew they were made for each other. It was just a matter of the two of them figuring it out.

      • L’Anne

        A guy who nailed the pitch on Chevalier Blanc?

      • KayeBlue

        A guy who was born in a concentration camp, spent early childhood in an orphanage, and may very well have schizophrenia…

      • 3hares

        Michael Ginsberg, that’s who!

        I seriously love that line. Because there are some people who say that to people, and he’d be one of them. (Though since it’s Don I can’t help but think he mostly smells like cigarettes all the time.)

        In fact, to make a Little Rascals reference (which Don was watching last week) it always makes me think of a line where Jackie Cooper says to each teacher, “Gee, you smell like a brand new haircut!”

        • Shawn EH

          “You want I should ask him what cologne?”

        • Munchkn

          Is that the short where Jackie and Chubby both have a crush on Miss Crabtree? I love that one!

          • 3hares

            IT SURE IS!!

      • leftcoastpickle

        I thought it meant he didn’t smell like an alcoholic anymore. An active alcoholic can smell pretty bad at any time of the day, especially in the morning. Ginz also mentions Don having dried out later on.

        • Malia C.

          That’s interesting – is it the smell of alcohol coming out of their pores during the course of the day or something else?

          • leftcoastpickle

            It comes out of the pores, stinks awful, plus he was drinking for breakfast for a while there. I’ve lived with an alcoholic, it doesn’t smell pretty.

            • Malia C.

              Ah, didn’t know it could get so bad. Grew up with an alcoholic but maybe I was just used to the smell so it was never unusual :/

            • Guest

              Hi, my name’s Kaye and I’m going to hell, because all I could think was:

            • KinoEye

              Yep. I know that after a night of heavy drinking (combined with smoking), I smelled awful when I got up in the morning. Your body has to get rid of that crap somehow, and sweating it out is one way of doing it. Nothing quite like reeking of stale beer to make you swear off heavy drinking — for me, at least.

        • siriuslover

          Yeah, I had my fourth rematch with my husband last night (what? It’s post-work!) and when he said that, it definitely seemed to me it was that he could smell a person! And juxtapose that to Roger coming in, saying “I had an early lunch” and Don saying “I can smell it!”

        • tallgirl1204

          Interesting. I thought it meant that Don had spiffed himself up extra for the morning’s meeting, by wearing more than usual cologne– also, Ginzberg has cologne on his mind, right? So maybe it’s just what he notices, and he has no filter.

    • leighanne

      Peggy looked fantastic in her dark green dress- she should wear more of that color and the dress was so flattering. Joan is taking note of the other women in the office wearing boots.
      I liked how Dawn’s golden outfit complemented Don’s colors back in the office, one of the few people who greeted him or still treated him the same.
      Great catch of Don appearing in the passenger seat.
      Did anyone else find it strange that Lou has a tiki bar set up in his office? Doesn’t seem to fit his character.

      • DeniseSchipani

        I was wondering about that. Don didn’t have a bar, right? he had a cart or a table with his alcohol on it. The tiki bar is just tacky.

        • grahamcracker3

          I’ve noticed that the last two weeks. Lou is so Milquetoast and that bar is so ham-fisted kitch. I just assumed it was an extension of what such a lame-o would THINK cultural appreciation would look like. Like what ‘Johnny Rocket’s’ is to soda fountains.

          • grahamcracker3

            Or to be more direct, American ideas of Hula dancers. They were not teeny coeds with ukeleles, they were usually husky warriors conducting religous ritual.

      • EarthaKitten

        Not sure if his was a tiki bar but Ted had something in his office last season that looked almost identical (in my mind, that is). I would guess the tiki bar is one way of signalling how out of place Lou is in Don’s creative space…can you even imagine Lou having drinks in his office much less at a bar? Cardigans are so out of place at a bar, don’t you think?

      • T C

        No, Lou’s phenomenally kitsch tiki bar is echoed in Jim Cutler’s bar with similar vertical lines. Lou probably shops at K-Mart or Monkey Ward as he has probably been given short-term contract work in the past and needs to mind his money.

    • Rottenwood

      Meredith is Daphne and Peggy is Velma for sure, but which of the lads would play Shaggy? Stan is a classic stoner, but it’s hard to see Ginsberg as a Fred.

      Chauncey, of course, can play Scooby. If they can find the poor guy.

      • eriklee

        If Stan shaved his beard, he would definitely be Fred. Ginsberg isn’t a pothead, but I think he’s weird enough to be Shaggy.

        • Alice Teeple

          And whiny!

        • Kit Jackson 1967

          Stan is the more mature/responsible one, so he would be Fred. Ginsberg is a bit more off the wall and out there, which is closer in character to Shaggy.

      • Logo Girl

        Maybe Don is Scooby. Brown suit. Taking scraps.

        • Annaline39

          Ruh roh

    • dash1211

      I thought the blonde who came up to Don in the restaurant resembled the blonde stewardess who knew Don’s name when he boarded the plane to California at the beginning of the episode.

      • Travelgrrl

        Two different names -Tricia (?) and Emily.

    • CPT_Doom

      Some things I noticed, mainly from the screen caps above:
      When Don is talking to the agent, they are just contrasted with one another, they’re nearly negatives of one another, with Don’s tie picking up the colors of the agent’s office and vice versa. Then in the telephone scene with Megan, Don’s tie and the colors of the bed are the same, and the tie is skewed toward Don’s heart – is Megan literally sleeping in Don’s remaining love?
      The episode juxtaposed Don’s return to SCDP and Betty’s trip to the farm, but the clothes really juxtapose the farm trip with Don’s impromptu visit to Megan. In both cases an older figure in an outfit that is totally wrong for the setting – and in both cases a too-formal suit – signify an inability for the older figure to connect with a younger figure they are supposed to love, but we’re not sure they actually do (Megan even refers to Don as “Daddy” to reinforce the point).
      Finally, I love the way Betty’s hair and makeup when she’s on the bed with Gene make her look much younger than her farm get-up. She’s a lost and confused little girl in that scene, and now Henry is the grown up.

      • AlmostClassy

        I looked at the screenshots of her in bed and immediately thought “little girl with a doll”. Except her doll is a living person who’s going to grow up and need so, so much therapy.

    • mommyca

      So I think I discover the mystery about the lady in the restaurant: she was indeed sent by the dudes trying to hire Don. Proof: the adornment in her dress recalls the colors in David James Elliott’s tie, with greens/reds/oranges, so they are definitely connected.

      • L’Anne

        Or it could connect them because, in that moment, both are trying to woo Don. They both want him. The connection they have is they share the same desire.

    • http://classversussass.com Class Versus Sass

      Great analysis as always!!!!!

    • Pamdela

      I notice in the photo of Francine and Betty that the waitress in the background, directly across from Betty, is wearing very similar colors to hers: a sort of minty blue with white. You have made me so aware of the meaning of matching colors/colors that “call to each other” in scenes that I wonder what this juxtaposition could mean. Perhaps underlining that Betty, as usual, feels put-upon or somehow subservient to Francine.

      • lisbeth borden

        Maybe connecting housewifery with being a servant constantly working at the beck of others, and Francine, the career woman contrasts w/ her completely different/modern outfit?

        • P M

          Betty is the last person who could be described as a servant. Even as Betty Draper Francis she didn’t do a great deal of the housework, I don’t believe.

          • lisbeth borden

            In the scene, Betty was defending her choice to be a housewife, almost chiding Francine for taking a job. But the truth was echoed in the background waitress’ outfit—-Being a housewife is starting to be seen as glorified servant, in the late 60′s.

            (The fact that Betty IS a terrible example of a dedicated mother is indicated in the above article I think? Same goes for her keeping house.)

        • L’Anne

          Betty has been shown doing plenty of work around her homes over the seasons– cooking, cleaning, doing the laundry, walking the dog, helping the kids with homework and organizing their school stuff.

          I think there are moments that Betty is feeling that everything she was promised would make her happy and leave her fulfilled hasn’t. She married a lying, philandering husband who treated her like an idiot and undermined almost any sense of independence she displayed.

          She was a pretty sympathetic character, and tried to be a loving wife and mother, in season 1, but every since (with few exceptions) they seem determined to turn her into as much of an unrepentant bitch as they possibly can.

          • lisbeth borden

            I’ve forgotten the era of Betty lifting a finger in her own house! She was more sympathetic when the kids were little.
            I find it interesting how Betty escaped the horrible philanderer, by marrying into public life & politics– even more pressure to be perfect at all times. Like the pressure her mother placed on her, only public. I think Betty can only function in a very tight space.

          • VeryCrunchyFrog

            Sewing, defrosting the refrigerator… Carla first appeared in “The Wheel,” at the end of S1, but I didn’t get the impression that she worked for the Drapers full-time until season 3, when Gene was born or on the way.

            • L’Anne

              She even knew how to replace the outlet, which she asked Don to do. Of course, he couldn’t be bothered, even though she asked because she was having a dinner party for him.

      • snow1985man

        i was going to make the same point. i think the message, given betty and francine’s conversation about women in the workforce and betty’s disdain for it, is that housewifery is finally being recognized not as a noble pursuit but as no more than cheap labor. in a recent interview with matt weiner he noted how influential “the feminine mystique” has been on the show. the irony is, of course, that betty’s off-loaded her own housewife tasks on a servant (hence the surprise that she would go on the field trip). the show makes an elegant point: betty doesn’t do anything inside or outside thehome. she’s a lady who lunches. and she doesn’t even eat the lunch.

        • http://www.GiftedCollector.com/ The Gifted Collector

          But she does collect Green Stamps. I loved seeing the book of stamps on the desk in the kitchen.

    • Not applicable

      Why I love this show- so many subtle details that tell the story make it so much more layered and interesting. the little back and forth between ‘frennimies’ Betty and Francine. Francine eats melon and cottage cheese for lunch (diet plate) Betty orders a salad and doesn’t eat. That is a one-upsmanship. I’m sure when the coffecake arrived she let Francine eat most of it.

      Betty uses her control over food as a power play. It only makes sense to her- as it is disordered thinking- but also likely garners concern. “Did you eat?” (implied: you’re so thin) That’s a win to a person like Betty- it gets her attention for her appearance, but mostly, it gets her attention. Thing is, her son notices her eating patterns too. Who would blame him for assuming she wouldn’t eat? She’s likely very confusing in that respect. Sadly, he was considerate, saving her space when another little boy wanted to sit on the blanket.

      From a fashion statement, I could not get over Betty’s clothes in this episode. PERFECTLY matching shoes and bag- in both scenes. Different coats complementing both outfits. She must have a whole room in that mansion just for the coats/bags & shoes! Hell, she’s not real and I’m even jealous! :)

      • P M

        Thank you for defining their relationship for me! I was searching for a term to describe it properly.

      • MadMenMurphy

        Re: Betty — consider that when she excused herself to go to the
        restroom (outhouse?) she most likely had to wriggle out and back into a
        girdle and hose with Bobby’s teacher’s braless freedom fresh in her
        mind. Then, came back to her sandwichless lunch — that’ll give you
        bitch-face for sure!!!

        • Not applicable

          no doubt. gives me bitchface just thinking about it!

    • malarson2

      So many details in this episode! I might just stick with the lists. It helps my brain sort it all out (even if it is a little lazy…I AM in bed not feeling well so that’s my excuse today. I’m sure there will be another one for next time):

      1. I love how when Megan is happy with Don, you just see her, but when she starts and continues to get upset, that tv is framed in almost every shot.

      2. The two Brunettes both dressed in brown in the background of their lunch were put there as a contrast.

      3. They styled Betty in that scene with ‘baby’ Gene to look VERY young. Hair falling forward, no makeup…a young Mother questioning her methods and choices. As opposed to Henry who looks old and wise.

      4. Wow is that creative team being colorless a powerful point and image. I knew there was something significant with Don’t Brown suit. It’s SO not like him, just has his behavior that day was so unusual for him

      5. Hadn’t even noticed Cutler’s animal print. Hilarious. And, like the creative team, there is not an ounce of color in that office. What’s the significance of that severe, line-stabby painting hanging over his head? Rorschach test?

      6. Do you think they hired David James Elliott because he looks so similar to Jon Hamm? It’s like Don is sitting across from himself, only happier and in hipper clothes.

      7. There was an ominous, something really bad is going to happen, feeling when that hooker approached their table. Sometimes I wonder if Mr. Weiner adds those situations just so we all feel the stress he wants us to feel. So we can feel Don’s dread.

      8. Roger’s friend, or whatever she is, reminds me of every kid when I was little – and even most of them now – who dressed up like a hippie for Halloween.

      9. I so appreciate that mini Joan’s Roses Retrospective. Excellent and so telling. Thank you for those amazing visuals. They sure do make it look like she and Bert and Bert and Jim are sitting extremely close together in that tight shot (a rose between two thorns), while Don and Roger are sitting far, far away.

      10. The Scooby-gang connection just made my day. Awesome.

      BONUS – The guy who headed the movement for people to experiment with drugs – and who did quite a bit of it on his own – in the 60s was named Ginsberg.

      • French_Swede

        Yes, his name was Alan Ginsberg, and my father-in-law was his classmate in high school.

        • malarson2

          Awesome!! Any inside scoopage? I just googled him. Forgot he was the beat poet who wrote Howl, too. Apparently he got into all sort of obscenity-law mishaps over that, and other things he wrote. They couldn’t have picked a better name for Man Men’s Ginsberg…a writer with no filter on what he says, who probably is doing some drugs, etc.

      • Shawn EH

        David James Elliott is definitely Don 2.0; and Don’s weird suit sort of fit the very weird day he was having.

    • ballerinawithagun

      Thank you and I desperately want that gorgeous icy blue purse.

    • ovarB

      I love Mad Men because of all the glorious design details from furniture to fashion!! If you are jonesing for furniture try searching for pieces from Herman Miller, Knoll and Girsberger. Unfortunately they do not build furniture like they used to. :(

      I feel like once the show is over and the last Mad Style recap has been posted that we will need to take a final exam and prepare for graduation from Mad Men Mad Style University. The analysis and discussion is seriously the best and it feeds my brain!!!!!

    • Robin Murray

      Betty Draper Frances’ bitch face always reminds me of Anna Wintour’s summa cum laude bitch face.

      • ikillplants

        Summa cum laude bitch face–YES!!!!!

    • Terri Terri

      Great Mad Style post — I really enjoyed!
      Yes on the crocheted acrylic ensembles, and I hated them even at the time! I only had to deal with one pot-holder vest, but just wore it when Grandma was coming over (since she made it).
      That robe/gown thing that Betty is wearing in bed, with the decorative trim. Wow! I know my mom had something like that. That kind of flat trim was everywhere in the fabric/notions department at our Penney’s for a while.

    • cstat

      I want Betty’s blue and white dress! I love when you guys blow my mind by pointing out certain things like the color scheme of the creative team.

    • DeniseSchipani

      I keep thinking, after reading TLo’s analysis of how Dawn’s work wardrobe has gotten more businesslike as well as more expensive, how she’s handling her transition from secretary to manager better, in some key ways, than Joan did.Could be because she’s also “representing” as a black woman, partly because she’s just a more grounded and serious person than Joan struck me as back in her early secretarial days. She traded far more, clearly, on her body and her looks. It’s interesting how just this short time later, Joan’s former office is much busier — phone ringing off the hook, schedules on the wall, etc. I always thought Joan just sort of sat there in between meetings. Dawn’s my new favorite.

      • MsKitty

        That’s a good point. There may be another issue at play for Dawn as well. As a white woman Joan was probably raised with the mindset that work is just something you do until your meet Mr. Right, so there’s no need to take it all that seriously. So she didn’t until her marriage crumbled and she was left with a son to raise. On the other hand, many Black women had to work out of necessity even after they got married so Dawn would definitely take her job much more seriously.

      • 3hares

        It is fascinating watching how different women have to transition. In Joan’s case, she was dressing to look sexy before. Her goals were different. Now she’s trying to change from that into an executive. Where as Dawn’s moving more, it seems, from a person who doesn’t want to be noticed to someone accepting and enjoying her new power. In some ways they’re needing to make opposite adjustments–Joan’s trying to tone it down, Dawn make herself stand out. But they’re not coming from exact opposite places, exactly.

        • Qitkat

          But at least in the red roses/boots combo Joan is definitely NOT toning it down. If you lined up everyone who was in the office that day, she would appear to be the trend setter, the powerful, ‘don’t give a damn what others are thinking’ one.

          Otherwise I agree with you.

          • 3hares

            You’re right–I was more meaning “tone it down” in terms of being sexy rather than not being trendy. It seems like Joan’s outfits now are trying to be more serious, but she still wears what looks good on her and she never fades into the background.

            • Qitkat

              Got it. Makes sense explained this way.

      • sojourneryouth

        There is no way Dawn could trade on her looks in the same way as Joan. Not that she isn’t attractive, nor that she is a church girl, but because doing so would earn her nothing in white corporate America. Those who were interested wouldn’t respect her and would feel just fine about taking advantage of her (in secret–can’t let the boys in the office know of their chocolate fantasy), and those who weren’t interested would be uncomfortable and confused and avoid her. Can you imagine how much stronger Bert’s reaction would have been to her sitting at reception if she was also dressed more provocatively? I mean, assuming he’d even let her keep her job!

        • P M

          I think it’s more what @DeniseSchipani:disqus said – she’s a serious person by nature.

          • 28fairplay

            I agree. Shirley doesn’t mind playing up her looks.

            • L’Anne

              Shirley is also already engaged, and by the looks of it, to someone who doesn’t want her working and might not need her to do so either. She can take risks with her clothes and wear things that could get her into trouble, but it doesn’t look like Dawn is in that position.

            • P M

              Um, given Shirley’s background, how does that make sense?

            • L’Anne

              ??? All we know about her background is that she’s engaged. She said he doesn’t want her working. He has enough money to buy roses for Valentine’s Day. She also set Peggy straight that the roses were hers, not Peggy’s. Doing that could have gotten her fired (Joan asked Peggy, why don’t you fire her?). There’s enough there to suggest that he doesn’t want her to work and doesn’t need to work.

              What we know about Dawn: she lives with her mother and a brother in Harlem. Her brother has mentioned joining the Army, which her mother has discouraged. There’s enough there to suggest that Dawn needs her job. She even told her friend that when she complained that Dawn couldn’t devote attention to her upcoming wedding.

            • P M

              I do understand what the characters themselves are saying. I guess I consider Shirley a bit overconfident when she says Charles doesn’t want her working and that Charles indeed has enough money. Also projecting on my part, I’ll admit it: “how exactly do you know circumstances won’t change, Shirley? How do you know that the money you make won’t be useful to your family and yourself?” Yeah, I’m a bit obsessed with this show…. :D

            • L’Anne

              You’re obsessed??? I am working on a potholder collection with quotations from it. First in progress: “is that Shalimar?” Obession– pot meet kettle.

              But I think we could say that any of the couples could have enjoyed the money from a second income. Even if they didn’t need it. I actually don’t know if Charles makes enough for her to not be economically productive.

            • KayeBlue

              Pardon me but I’ll need to buy a half-dozen of those for next Christmas. May I order one with “Psychiatry is just this year’s candy-pink stove”?

            • L’Anne

              I might be able to do that. I don’t have a good oven embroidery right now. I’m trying to match a line with a graphic and then have a suggestive print on the other side.

            • Shawn EH

              Yes, but Shirley knows what really matters, too. She adapted to Lou’s childish petulance immediately; and felt free to grab Jim and drag him by the arm to Lou’s office because clealry Lou told her to make that happen, now. She had to get him out of there without alerting Don, and she did it well. Feminine wiles are fine and expected for the secretaries to deploy; as long as they also do the secretary stuff, which includes making the men (their bosses) comfortable at all times.

            • L’Anne

              I think there’s also a difference between playing up one’s looks by wearing flattering clothes or following trends and USING one’s looks. I think in season 1 there were numerous references to Joan USING her looks and encouraging Peggy to do so as well.

          • DeniseSchipani

            exactly, thanks. Sure, it matters that she’s a black woman and not,you know, JOAN, but she’s also more the type who plays down her looks — and gets down to the job at hand. She was KILLING it in that office, when she was talking to Don. Just the phrase, “I’m swamped” had me cheering for her, for some reason.

            • P M

              Better to be busy than bored at work. ALWAYS.

            • L’Anne

              I had a colleague who took two months off every summer by never using her sick, vacation, and personal days and by accruing over time. She was shocked that when there were cut backs that she was laid off. Gosh, maybe because we function just fine for the summer???? Always look essential. It means you probably are.

      • http://redheadedwolf.wordpress.com/ Laura Renee

        We had plenty of scenes of busy Joan in her former office. Remember in the season premiere, when she’s working on a schedule on the wall when Ken comes in to toss her her earring.

    • NDC_IPCentral

      You’ve, once again, brightened a gloomy day (torrential rains here in IP Central territory) and sharpened my appreciation for the past episode in quantum leaps. Boy, I didn’t make the Francine pantsuit/Betty field trip outfit connection until I saw your screen caps. It just jumped out at me today.

      Looking forward to seeing you and members of the BK cohort at EMC2 on Saturday – bet we’ll have some MM chatter.

      • P M

        Oh man, was she actually sub-consciously believing that she was showing Francine how to be a good mother when mirroring her suit (sort of)? Jeez Betty

    • eriklee

      There’s also a milk motif in this episode. Betty drinking raw cow’s milk reveals her childlike nature, and Gene sleeping on her (sudenly more ample) bosom symbolizes that he’s still reliant on her, at least for now.

      • DeniseSchipani

        I thought that same thing — Gene’s sleeping head resting on her breast, which seemed more ample than usual, especially as she’s in a nightgown. Brought back memories of my own sleeping babies post-nursing, but not only did she not nurse her kids, Gene’s well past that stage. They were definitely playing the Lady Madonna thing in the scene, ironically of course because she’s so not that mother.

        • P M

          Betty needs her kids to make her look like a mother, hence pulling Gene into an embrace. Rather than her *being* a mother to them.

    • Lady Bug

      Love the little details-like Bobby’s worn jeans at the knees, very typical 11/12 year old boy; in contrast to his mother’s overdressing for a trip to a family farm

    • Fjasmine

      Any thoughts on Joan’s white purse/attache case? It really stands out.

      • P M

        Fabulous. A mite impractical (so narrow! What would fit in that?) but I still want it.

        • Fjasmine

          A toothbrush.

        • Kit Jackson 1967

          I want it too. I thought it was impractical because of the color. I don’t know a lot about accounts, but would she need to bring many papers/files to and from work each day?

    • Denise Rambo

      I think that dress Joan is wearing makes her look thinner than anything I’ve ever seen her in.

    • melanie0866

      Oh, that last line was awesome! Love you guys.

      • tallgirl1204

        The whole review was delicious, but that last line was the best dessert ever.

    • Uncivil_Servant

      LOVE the insight fellas. Idea on Jim and the color change and significance. If Jim (and his other previous partner Ted) wanted the/an agency for themselves they would have to buy out the carry-over SCDP partners UNLESS the agency shed accounts, or continues o do so, leading to a scenario of either cutting staff or dissolving the agency (getting rid of SC&P without the buyout). Hiring a schmuck as creative director makes getting and holding clients harder. Also, things like making Pete hand his accounts to more Jim-loyal members like Bob makes other partners unhappy. Unhappy partners more likely to dissolve agreement. Then, as struggle for accounts appears get accounts people on YOUR side. Joan = accounts holder. Roger = none. Cooper = None. Don = none. Pete = as few as they can possible let him have.

    • kat89

      OMG! I wonder if Janie Bryant intentionally did the Scooby Doo reference! Hilarious!

      • L’Anne

        without the van though. Could also be a reference to the shows around at the time that had 4 main characters in the 2 of each pattern.

    • Chuck Barthelme

      LOVE the review. Also had a strange thought at the end of this episode. What if the ending is that Don is finally going to get his shit together as the rest of the office falls apart. Seems like dissension among the partners, a possible split with the California office… I almost wonder if they’re setting up Don Draper to be the only one left standing.

      • P M

        It’s a very Californian (for Don) suit. Foreshadowing?

      • Laylalola

        I had flashes of that being something like how it all ends too, either tied thematically to the breakup of the Beatles or with the song Let It Be.

      • EarthaKitten

        I was amazed to have come away from the opening sequence with a totally different meaning after watching this episode. For the first time, I found myself thinking that the opening depicted Don losing himself and then winding up totally secure and in control. Maybe we’ve already seen Don take his dive and we will now see him assert himself in his own skin for the first time. I would find that conclusion to be very satisfying.

    • Teresa

      Haven’t read any comments yet, but what’s with the little lock of hair hanging down from Joan’s coif? Discord symbol?

      • Laylalola

        I don’t know but you just reminded me — my mother and my aunt used to tape a spiral curl behind each ear, sometime in the early to mid 70s. That’s not what Joan’s little curl is but it just reminded me of that later fad.

        • FibonacciSequins

          My mother did that too, in the same time period. And then she would sit under her portable bonnet hair dryer.

      • L’Anne

        She might need a trip to the salon for a set. Also, its early spring in this episode, isn’t it? She juts came in from a meeting. If she was outside, it could have been a curl that was wind blown in the weather. That fact that it is a marker of “out of placedness” echoes all the other “out of placedness” of this episode.

    • Hyphen

      I saw Don’s brown suit and easy acquiescence to the terms as ‘Dick Whitman gets his foot in the door’. It was foreshadowed by a Roger bringing up the furs. Maybe that drive for honesty is laying deeper roots.

    • ACKtually

      Did anyone else think it was so interesting that Francine’s new career is a travel agent? In that, the only time we have seen Betty truly happy is when she is traveling- in Italy with Don, or at Bobby’s camp in upstate? I thought it was supposed to drive the jealousy factor up a bit and highlight Betty’s unhappiness.

      • 28fairplay

        A lot of travel imagery in this episode. The opening music was a reference to Sinbad’s travels (as well as to Scheherazade who stayed alive by telling cliffhangers). The last song was used in “Easy Rider.

        • decormaven

          Yes, “If Six Was Nine” was used in “Easy Rider,” but it first appeared on the “Axis: Bold as Love,” the second album by Jimi Hendrix Experience.

          • 28fairplay

            Yes, but “Easy Rider” is a 1969 film.

            • decormaven

              Yes. “Axis” entered the US charts in 1968.

    • smh4748

      This was the episode of the good office dress! I loved Peggy’s teal number, Dawn’s plaid dress, and Joan’s angry roses dress. I usually don’t have much outfit envy from the office portions of the show, and I’m not sure I’ve ever had it from something Peggy was wearing. Of course, poor Peggy, followed it up with that pale blue monstrosity, but Peggy, especially, “can’t win them all.”

      Like everyone, I hate Lou so much. But isn’t it amazing how unanimous, instant, and visceral the reaction has been to Lou? Most characters on MM have shades of gray, so that even someone who has a lot of flaws–paging you, Betty Draper Francis–can still elicit moments of sympathy. But Lou? The hate levels are off the charts for that guy, and we’ve really only seen him substantially for three episodes. Anyway, seeing the screen shots of him lurking and pouting in the background are actually pretty funny. I’m hoping his clear outsider-ness in these shots is a foreshadowing that he will be gone soon.

      I’m over the Roger and his hippie woman storyline. Doesn’t feel terribly accurate to me, and I wish they’d find a better way to use him. I miss his inappropriate but hilarious zingers. Although, Cutler’s “Are you aware your self pity is *distasteful*?” was pretty great.

      Lastly, my mom–who watched every episode of JAG with my father when it was on the air–did not recognize DJE. I said “That’s the JAG guy!” and I’m not sure she ever came around to believing me. He does look very different!

      • L’Anne

        Roger and his “Day by Day” woman…. well, Danny had Lotus.

      • Cheryl

        You know I was thinking about the hippie girlfriends and how Roger would be the last person they’d be interested in, even with his acid dropping. And then it occurred to me, these are girls/women playing at being hippies, it’s almost cosplay.

      • decormaven

        Looking at Roger in his swanky smoking jacket and his hippie girlfriend in her garb- what a disconnect. They can do drugs til the cows come home, but they’re always going to come back to the reality that they are of two generations.

    • French_Swede

      In the shot of the partners in the conference room, the men are all dressed in suits and ties while in the background Lou is wearing a grandpa cardigan with his glasses hanging around his neck ~ the very epitome of mediocrity for a creative director.

    • French_Swede

      Peggy’s blue suit calls back to Betty’s oft-worn blue dresses, two women in his life who are cool and condescending towards him. Also, Peggy’s blue gives off the maternal vibe, as though she is a disapproving *mom* to the idea of Don’s return.

    • StelledelMare

      This is pretty random but I was going through old Mad Style posts (and rewatching some episodes from season one which is blowing my mind considering all that’s happened since) and I was wondering what ever happened to Joan’s signature pen? It seems that she wore it right up to season 6 so I don’t know if it’s just something that was retired for her character or if such a thing wouldn’t have really been in style anymore as an accessory by this time. Random I know but the roses definitely got me thinking about things signature to Joan in the past.

      • Gatto Nero

        She wore the pen as an administrative assistant who had to be ready to take notes at someone else’s behest at any time.
        Now that she’s a partner and an “account man,” I suppose it’s beneath her. Maybe this signals her change in status.

      • decormaven

        Agree with Gatto Nero, she’s moving up in the world. She’s replaced the pen with some pretty high-end costume jewelry.

      • EarthaKitten

        I agree with Gatto and decormaven but I kind of recall that Joan stopped wearing her signature pen after Joey got fired for making lewd jokes about Joan. I recall Joey made some derogatory comment about how Joan’s pen was there to draw attention to her huge breasts which, of course, was Joan’s intent.

        • Kathryn Sanderson

          Joey got fired in Season 3 or 4. I’m rewatching Season 5 right now, and Joan is wearing the pen necklace. So I think it has more to do with Joan’s moving up in her career…or did she stop wearing the pen necklace after she slept with the Jaguar guy and became a partner? I’ll have to watch and see.

    • http://batman-news.com Nick Valenziano

      That final picture and comment are priceless. Still laughing.

      Question: Did anyone else notice what appeared to be wisps of smoke coming off of Dawn’s desk for a split second in her first scene this episode? I replayed the moment over and over and I couldn’t make a definate call on that. I ask the question, though, because when I thought it was coming from an unseen cigarette–and as an avid reader of this blog and so now I’m always looking for deeper meaning in everything–I gasped and thought once Dawn starts climbing the ladder, she’s now crossed over to that world of cigarettes and booze that equals success at the agency. Just like it happened to Peggy.

      • tallgirl1204

        Someone in our little t.v. group also asked “Is Dawn smoking?” but I missed it. I can’t see Dawn drinking at work– this is a woman who thinks that the other young women at church dress (what was the word?) too flirty.

        • http://batman-news.com Stephaniekb

          “like harlots”!

      • Danielle

        Could it have been steam rather than smoke? Perhaps from a cup of coffee or tea?

        • http://batman-news.com Nick Valenziano

          That’s what I’m uncertain of. It was so subtle and only in the very first shot of that scene. I might have been hallucinating. :-)

          • AnneElliot

            I saw it too — I was wondering about that. I’ll have to go back and look closely. If it was first thing in the morning, I’d suspect coffee.

    • Lady Bug

      I haven’t read through all of the comments, but Don’s suit: didn’t Ted wear a lot of browns last season as well? Not sure if that means anything at this point…

      • siriuslover

        And Jim Cutler made a note of it when Ted came to the office a couple of episodes back.

        • elevan

          I think he meant “why aren’t you brown?” in regards to Ted not being tan despite being in California.

          • siriuslover

            LOL. I JUST got that he meant a tan as opposed to his suit. Thank you, elevan.

    • Bootsy

      You’ve done it, TLo. I’ve enjoyed and appreciated hundreds of laughs in years of visiting this site… but I haven’t laughed harder or longer at anything than the last sentence above.

    • NMMagpie

      This thing I love is what looks like the barest hint of a connection in the scene with Peggy and Don. The lightest color in his tie is the only thing that relates to Peggy’s blue suit.

      I also loved Dawn’s version of Joan’s brooch.

      Excellent analysis again, gentlemen.

      • P M

        I saw that Dawn’s dresses had improved dramatically. I didn’t realize that she was emulating Joan, though.

    • http://batman-news.com JLawGirl

      Don’s tie as he sits in the creative office… I swear my dad has the very same one and if I dug far enough back in his closet I’d find it. Also, it could be the tie he married my mother in. What’s kind of ironic though was that my dad was a major hippie, marrying my mom in 1979 so he obviously bought the tie at a thrift store or borrowed it from my grandfather. And speaking of my grandfather, Harry Crane looks JUST LIKE my grandfather. Checkered coats, thick, dark-rimmed glasses, combed over hair with sideburns.

      • Alice Teeple

        My dad wore bowling shoes to his 1977 Justice of the Peace wedding, and my mom wore a dress not unlike something Peggy Olson would wear: blue shift with a bow. Definitely better times, in my opinion. I love Stan’s outfits, on this subject: the “STAN” belt buckle Janie pointed out in the extra had me roaring. I knew people who dressed exactly like that well into my adolescence in the 90s!

      • AnneElliot

        I have photos of my dad from the late 60s/early 70s dressed JUST like Harry Crane — but with a goatee, because he was thinning on top. Good times!

    • http://batman-news.com JLawGirl

      Also, anyone else stalk TLo all Wednesday morning for the new Mad Style post?

      • somebody blonde

        This is definitely one of the benefits of living on the West Coast. By the time I get up, the first TLo post of the day is always up.

      • ovarB

        Yes! And I did a Betty Draper pout when it wasn’t up first thing this morning. :P

      • Kathryn Sanderson

        Guilty! (I’m in the Eastern time zone).

    • Valdri8

      Archie, Scooby, and my Mom making Saturday morning pancakes. What I would give to be able to relive that just one more time!

      TLo you so fucking rock my Wednesdays. What will happen when Mad Men is no more?

      • Qitkat

        TLo you so fucking rock my Wednesdays. What will happen when Mad Men is no more?
        The more reason to savor every moment of it now. When our lives can collide like this, it is a kind of magic.

    • dmkava

      I liked that when Francine asked Betty to share the coffee cake, Jones, through a simple icy look, very aptly telegraphed Betty’s thoughts of “You Effing Bitch, you know I used to be fat and you see me not eating but yet you’re forcing me into coffee cake.” The ultimate in passive aggressive behavior on Francine’s part!

      • Shawn EH

        Well, but also just an excuse to get some coffee cake, which she’s going to split. Is she putting Betty down, or collaborating with her in the same cordial way Don offered to dine and dash while bonding with Sally?

        • dmkava

          What a great series when just a small gesture like that can set off interpretation

      • P M

        I saw it more as ‘How could I be friends with this woman? She works, worse, it’s in a tiny, loud office in that *mall*, for heavens’ sake, her husband can’t be doing very well, she called me Betty DRAPER, and she wants me to eat cake (how dare she!)’

    • ShaoLinKitten

      Random thoughts: are cut flowers symbolic of heartbreak this season? First we see Peggy’s Valentine’s Day explosion, then the sort of wan arrangement Roger sent to Joan, a callback to their romance, and now Don arranging flowers for Megan right before his truth bomb shatters their fragile marriage.

      Is the blue and green symbolism still at play this season? We see Betty and Peggy in aqua when they are trying to assert their roles. Betty is in blue when she’s playing the erstwhile Madonna, and Peggy in forest when protesting her lack of Clio nominations.

      It was interesting that Bobby was in primary red and Betty in clashing orange at the farm.

      I continue to love Harry’s commitment to windowpane plaid.

      Lastly, when did Ginsberg become such an asshole? This season he has been so blatantly sexist towards Peggy, and I don’t remember he being like that in previous seasons.

      • Qitkat

        I don’t remember Ginsberg like this either. It’s pretty outrageous, even for the times.

        • Alice Teeple

          Ginsberg was always an asshole from the day he was hired, with airs of sexism thrown in there the day Peggy interviewed him. He’s certainly always been abrasive to her. I think the level of assholery has risen exponentially, but he’s certainly always had an entitled air about him; a “I’m very clever and deserve everything I get” attitude. I felt the “masturbate gloomily” line was a real anachronism, though,

          • Qitkat

            I agree he always acted entitled and abrasive, although I had forgotten some of it. It was this particular comment that seemed so unbelievable.

          • Glammie

            I’ve been puzzling over that one–outrageous, but the song “Sodomy” from Hair was around this time “Sodomy, fellatio, cunninglingus, pederasty, father why do these words sound so nasty? Masturbation can be fun, join the holy orgy Kama Sutra everyone . . . ” So with that happening on Broadway, I wouldn’t totally rule out such behavior from Ginsberg.

            • Alice Teeple

              Ohhh. You know, you do have a point. If boring old Pete was at a Hair performance, Ginzo would definitely know about it. I am not super familiar with “Hair,” so I didn’t put two and two together.

          • Munchkn

            One of the hottest books of 1969 was Portnoy’s Complaint in which the main character, a young Jewish bachelor named Alexander Portnoy, tells his psychiatrist his sexual fantasies and experiences in very, very explicit detail. Much of it is about Alexander masturbating. His Jewishness also figures into the novel.

            • Alice Teeple

              Damn, I can totally see the connection now – but it’s just odd that he would mention that word in the workplace around other people. It would make more sense in a memoir or a psychiatrist’s office, but to your boss in an elevator some random morning, it’s very out of place.

            • http://bidonica.wordpress.com/ Poggy

              On the other hand, if there’s someone who seems to have no clue about what’s appropriate or not, that’s Ginsberg. He seems to completely lack that filter and I guess that by now most of the people in the office, including Peggy, just got used to it, otherwise he would have been fired earlier.

    • jessicapancakes

      Harry Crane and Jim Cutler, are however, allies, in the end – seeing eye to eye? They are wearing the same eyeglasses.

      • FibonacciSequins

        Jim raised the subject of Harry Crane in the partners’ meeting, and Roger immediately conceded with a “He’s gone.” It seems Jim aligned with Harry’s thoughts about getting a computer, but not with Harry.

    • shopgirl716

      Don is, again, the unwanted boy in the whorehouse. Maybe you never do get past your own shit.

      • EarthaKitten

        Ouch!

    • boweryboy

      I noticed that Dawn’s blue brooch is similar to a few Joan wore in earlier seasons. Perhaps a subtle indication that she’s the new Joan of the office?

      • Kit Jackson 1967

        The brooch is pure Joan, but the overall look is more like Peggy. Maybe they are trying to signal that Dawn is a mix of Joan and Peggy.

    • Joe Mitstein

      WHEN will the Mad Men prop crew give up the idea that people in the late 60s still used anything but six-digit phone numbers? That business card! They’re obsessed with the idea of letter-letter phone numbers, when in fact they had gone by the wayside well before 1969. Sure, you could still find evidence of them on signage or even some ads, but not on business cards of anything like a forward-looking company.

      • P M

        The reference to your grandmother makes me nostalgic for my own grandparents’ phone number. From the 50s, if not the late 40s, they had the same phone number. All the way till about the 2000s. I still can’t recall their new number even though it hasn’t changed in over 5 years, but that old one is perma-etched into my memory.

        • decormaven

          My mom had the same number from the time I was born until her death three years ago. Won’t see that again, folks.

          • Laura Abrahamsen

            It took me 4 months after my mom died last year to cancel the phone because I knew that number would be gone forever. Dad, at 87 with Alzheimer’s, had never answered a phone in his life and certainly was not about to start.

            • decormaven

              Bless you. I felt like I was closing off an important chapter in history. Imagine 56 years with the same number. The mind boggles…

            • scribbles14

              The number my parents had beginning in 1962 is still in service, only because one of my brothers inherited the number along with the house. The area code did change in the 1980s, of course.

            • AnneElliot

              My parents moved into their house in 1972 and they still have the same phone number, though the area code has changed. I’m a military spouse and I can’t tell you how many phone numbers and addresses I’ve had in the past 20 years. When that number is gone, I’m sure I’ll cry too.

            • Qitkat

              After mom died, and dad was gone several months earlier, I used to dial the number (44 years in effect) just to hear it ring. It took several weeks for the phone company to give the ‘not in service’ announcement. This thread puts me in tears. Thanks to @decormaven:disqus and @disqus_t4RDqNEmCH:disqus too. Such commonality amongst us.

            • Laura Abrahamsen

              Is all of this too heartwarming for true BKs? I hope not. Thanks, everyone. And now, an ear worm from a childhood in northeast Ohio: GArfield1-2323, GArfield1-2323…on the radio into the early ’70s for sure.

            • Qitkat

              Too heartwarming? Never. My favorite moments here, almost.

            • Kathryn Sanderson

              Those persisted into the 70s in Chicago. Lincoln Carpets was CEntral6-6000, CET Television was MOhawk4-4100, and my favorite, Bouchelle Carpet Cleaning: HUdson3-2700. Earworms, indeed!

            • dschubba

              Later than that, even. I’m 31, but I heard that jingle in my head as I read your post. :)

          • ShaoLinKitten

            So would my father, except they split the 212 area code into 212 and 718… other than that, same number. He still has a phone with a rotary and a cord too, in the basement.

          • Alice Teeple

            My parents still have the same phone number that they’ve had since 1977. They don’t have cellphones.

    • http://gabyrippling.tumblr.com/ Gaby

      On the note of Don as office husband, particularly given that this was the first ep this season with Betty; I think that partiularly icy Betty blue on Peggy may here (and possibly each time she’s worn it) call back to the idea of Peggy as Don’s office-wife, now ex, similarly disappointed and bitter with him (though Betty has of course mostly moved on for the most part now).

      Spot on with the rose dress, I was thinking about it myself long after and the juxtaposition of that history with Don is a really clever nuanced read. It also helps that it’s a much more modern print and style than her past rose dresses (the boots also adding modern style). It’s a surprisingly girlish (as opposed to womanly) look on Joan that definitely harkens to the rejuvenation going on in her career; I also like how the print looks a little thorny with the spiky white leaves – Joan knowing its not all roses.
      In other news, I also covet this particular rose dress.

      I know a lot of viewers were struck with how bitchy Betty was to Bobby, but on the scale of things I actually didn’t even think she acted that poorly (maybe because I’ve had experiences with my own mother like that). He traded away her sandwich for candy, she made him eat a piece of the candy; typical motherly guilting in my experience. Certainly not on par with Betty shoving mashed potatoes in Sally’s mouth in season 5. Her afternoon sulk was the real childish act that was over the top.

      But I’m also kind of pleased to see bitchy judgy Betty again, so maybe I’m biased.

      • smh4748

        I think most would allow Betty a moment of annoyance over the sandwich. But after that moment of annoyance, there were about a million other ways she could have reacted that would have been better. Like, “Ok Bobby, how about I get one bite of your sandwich and we split the candy?” Or even just sucking it up and realizing it’s one meal. She didn’t respond at all to Bobby’s obvious contrition, and I think that’s where she lost sympathy. Nor did she display any sense of perspective about what a small little thing that ultimately was. Of course, the kicker for most was her petulance continuing into the evening, continuing to kick Bobby around about it and creating enough of a scene that Henry was driven to attempt to investigate.

        P.S. I like Henry! I don’t know how present he is, and perhaps Bobby’s unwillingness to confide implies that he’s not that present or caring all the time, but from what we see from him, he always seems level-headed and at least interested in his stepchildren’s well-being. I always hope that in the off-screen world of the show, Henry is helping to provide some balance to Betty’s failures with the kids.

        • latina fey

          “But after that moment of annoyance, there were about a million other ways she could have reacted that would have been better.”

          honestly, i think you’re judging by today’s parenting standards. i don’t think this type of reaction would have been perceived as bad parenting by many people of earlier generations. i know i grew up with a parent who did that guilt-trip type of thing on the regular (i was born in ’75). i doubt parents back then were as worried about their children’s self-esteem as parents are today.

          • FibonacciSequins

            My mother was 34 in 1969 and had five kids. She would not have pulled a guilt trip like Peggy did, and I can’t think of any other mothers I spent a lot of time with as a kid who would have done that. I know parenting standards have changed, but I don’t think that was typical behavior in 1969.

            • elevan

              What bugged me the most was that she didn’t even ask him why he did it, to hear his reasoning before jumping to conclusions that it was a reflection of his lack of love for her.

            • L’Anne

              Actually, I think part of the issue is how he said anything. She sits down, picks up the bag, rifles through it, and then says “Where’s my sandwich?” He watches her the whole time, and after she asks, he says “What do you mean?” He knew full well her sandwich wasn’t there, and he never cops to anything until she asks. He gave her sandwich to someone else for candy and then plays innocent, as if the sandwich should still be there. I said Monday I’d have gotten in trouble, and I would have. But I also probably would’ve gotten a slap for the implied lie but asking “What do you mean?” Because I KNEW EXACTLY what happened to that sandwich. At 12-13, Bobby is old enough to know he wasn’t acting in a very honest manner.

              Like I said Monday, I’m not defending Betty. But what happened in that scene was more than Betty being her petty self. It was also about Bobby– a kid that’s been established as having a history of dishonesty since season 1. “The good can’t win over the bad.”

            • Qitkat

              He has learned from ‘the best.’ Unfortunately. And Betty is unable to see how he has picked up these dishonest traits from her, and Don.

            • inchoate

              I took that to mean he didn’t even consider/understand that it was HER sandwich. And if he’s not used to seeing her eat, that might be his honest response.

              Based on how he behaved the rest of the day I really don’t think he would have given away her sandwich knowing that it was hers.

            • ShaoLinKitten

              There was a recent article in New Yorker Magazine about why kids lie. Guess what the primary reason was? They were emulating their parents. Also, Bobby knows all too well how excessively Betty reacts to any slight, so of course he lied. If he thought sheepishly telling the truth and apologizing would work, he would have I’m sure.

            • T C

              Negative attention is better than no parental attention at all. I say this as one who overheard constant maternal requests to “send the children to boarding school” by the time I was in kindergarten, we were already spending 75% of weekends farmed off to relatives and family friends at this age. My younger brother was eventually sent to prep school in the middle of high school and it was expected that I go to a good college to earn an Mrs. degree.

            • ShaoLinKitten

              Exactly! The creepy part is how she took normal, impulse, candy-oriented little boy behavior and turned it into “Bobby doesn’t love me.” She misinterpreted his action as an indictment of her parenting, and in doing so, was a bad parent. Bobby was obviously so excited about her being on the trip and distraught at her lack of lunch that he clearly loves her. It was sad, and made me feel terrible for Bobby. Will Betty never grow up?

            • Shawn EH

              I don’t know it it was normal, but I identified with it; I too have been having some “perfect” experience, and then a sour note of disappointment, however trivial, is struck and everything is instantly ruined. My partner even has a few phrases (mostly amounting to “please let this go”) that are used to head off these unpredictable but long-lasting downturn. You know she just pouted silently (with the occasional barb aimed at poor Bobby) for the rest of the day.

            • KayeBlue

              My maternal grandmother was 38 (mother of 5), my mother 11, and my mother nearly cried watching this episode because she felt like it was a scene from her childhood. Cold, judgmental, immature parents have always existed.

            • FibonacciSequins

              I absolutely agree. I just said from my own experience I don’t think it was typical behavior of the time.

            • Alice Teeple

              (I think you mean Betty!)

            • FibonacciSequins

              Yes, and thank you! lol

            • Babyboomer59

              The mother I had would have included more than 1 small sandwich for a child. She also told him to go ahead and eat while she walked away. Understandable he thought both were for him and he had a chance to get candy which he probably seldom gets.

          • Glammie

            I was a kid in 1969, so I knew my mother and plenty of other mothers from that generation–and they did not treat their kids that way. It was awful parenting then and it’s awful parenting now.

          • smh4748

            I suppose it could be a “modern” viewpoint. But I really think I was judging it more from a “not being an asshole to other people” standard, which I kind of think is timeless. :) Betty’s guilt trip was a petulant, crappy thing to do to someone, whether it was her kid or not.

            • latina fey

              i totally agree. i was never saying that it was ok, just that i think people tend to judge parenting styles of earlier generations through the lens of what we know now. i mean, look at the episode in season 1(?) when carlton spanks someone else’s kid and no one bats an eye. i hardly think anyone would be like “cool, yeah i’d do that/be ok with someone else spanking my kid” but spanking didn’t used to be such a big deal.

            • http://elizabitchtaylor.tumblr.com/ Elizabitch Taylor

              It’s true that people are judging parenting from a modern lens, but it’s because that children of people like Betty and Don grew up to be bitter and maladjusted that people are questioning it.

        • Travelgrrl

          I would do Henry twenty ways from Sunday. I’ll bet he’s a caring lover!

    • Kit Jackson 1967

      Some random thoughts:

      The agent’s collar so wide! It’s amazing to see 1970s trends starting to appear in late 1960s California.

      Dawn may have Joan’s old job, but Jamie is dressing her more like Peggy.

      “All they need is a van and a Great Dane with a speech impediment to complete the picture.” made me laugh out loud. I love and appreciate all of the work you do on these posts.

      • L’Anne

        Dawn/Peggy dressing similarities says a lot about the similarities in the characters. Both are working class girls who grew up in New York in parts of the city connected with ethnic/ racial “outsiders.” Both also don’t have their fathers in the picture.

        • smh4748

          Has anything been mentioned about Dawn’s father that we know he isn’t in the picture? I can’t recall much being said about her family life at all, but I didn’t necessarily read that as her not having one.

          • L’Anne

            I’m remembering “Mystery Date,” when Dawn is at Peggy’s. She mentions she just lives with her mother and brother. And she’s never mentioned her father. I took that as a sign that he wasn’t around.

            • smh4748

              Ah, ok. I couldn’t remember hearing much about her personal life, except for the memorable line where she calls the women at her church harlots. :)

            • L’Anne

              LOVED that line.

          • MsKitty

            She’s mentioned her mom (in the MLK assassination ep) and younger brother (when she spent the night at Peggy’s). Don’t recall any mention of her father though.

          • Babyboomer59

            During the riots didn’t she say her motherwent to stay with her aunt? Also said her mother told her she needed to go into work after MLK. Never a mention of afather but other statemens make me feel she does not have one.

    • snarkykitten

      Thank you for your brilliant recaps and analysis. I’ll be more saddened by your lack of Mad Men posts than the end of the show itself.

      The Scooby Doo dig had me in stitches. You guys are geniuses.

    • gefeylich

      Okay, that final shot and comment was hilarious and inspired – on par with “Lew is the Joffrey Baratheon of Mad Men.” Bravo to you both.

      Actually, I loved Joan’s dress fiercely. It was sort of inappropriate, but looked so good on her I didn’t care about its Laugh-In qualities (which Shirley’s office wear shares). It definitely was a power dress, though. The gold pendant, boots and perfect white briefcase cinched it totally.

      Peggy’s outfits are getting progressively more awful, and her hair is mousy in the extreme, all accentuating her descent into bitter career-girl spinsterhood, which is appalling. I hope sometime soon she busts out and moves to San Francisco or New Orleans or someplace similarly freeing. She’s ready to pop.

      • Glammie

        Ah, it’s the hair. I knew something was off about her coloring, but when I checked, her make-up looked good, so the mousy hair color–subtly done. Good catch.

      • Babyboomer59

        To me Joan’s dress and boots looked like she was attempting to dress more youthful
        She had been to a breakfast meeting so she would be wanting to impress a client.

    • Thom

      The only thing I can contribute to this, is that in Betty’s lunch with Francince, check out that waitress in back: That’s a perfect color match for Betty with the waitress. Seeing Francine in her new job reminds Betty of how menial and dependent her responsibilities are, and she had to have seen that waitress with her exact coloring in her periphery.

    • Black Doug

      I never noticed Jim’s zebra rug before. I think I’m still in shock over Roger’s vagina wallpaper (you all see it too, right?!) that I haven’t gotten to notice anything about the other offices.

      • latina fey

        i read that as ‘orifices’ and had to go back and re-read.

        • Annaline39

          Me too

      • 3hares

        That’s Ted’s old vagina wallpaper (ew, that sounds gross).

      • VicD

        I became a bit obsessive over that view of Jim’s office once the call out to the Zebra rug was made. On the desk – “See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” monkey statuette. How hilarious, as he is currently the most evil / Machiavellian guy in the office right now. Dumbells and a silver coffee service on the coffee table – what’s that about? Elephant statuette or lamp on the side table? I need a better view of that! I LOVE how much effort goes into the smallest details on this show.

        • Uncivil_Servant

          Jim is in big game hunter mode. Sharkskin colored suit, zebra skin rug, elephant figurine (ultimate for olden-time big game hunters) which is exactly like one my brother brought home from Kenya in early 80′s, even an Elephant drawing underneath a drawing of a pair of cheetas. So – dead zebra carcass (conquest) , elephant figure (symbolizing caught/ownership) elephant picture (?), Cheetahs picture (fast hunters).

      • T C

        I did notice that Megan’s curtains (behind the flowers) were of similar motif, just a bit softer.

    • FibonacciSequins

      Excellent fashion breakdown! I noticed Don seems to never set foot in the bedroom at the canyon house. I’ve only seen them having sex/cuddling/sleeping on the couch (or is it a daybed) in the living room. I guess it’s to emphasize that he’s a guest.

      I’m very familiar with the crocheted skirt and vest. Looking at it made me feel itchy – that acrylic yarn. *shudder*

      The patterns of Betty’s blue dress (same color as the waitress) and salmon suit both consisted of broken lines – perhaps an indication of inner instability or discordance?

      • siriuslover

        They were in the room last week (or the week before?). They were watching the TV and he shut it off (she was asleep on his chest). He said, let’s go to bed, then they went to bed after she brushed her teeth.

        • FibonacciSequins

          Okay. I don’t remember them going to bed, I just remember them crashed on the couch watching the tv.

    • http://tvblogster.blogspot.com Boop

      I think these days the only people I like on this show are Don and Dawn – whose names always get confused in everyone’s pronunciation.

      • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

        But of course : )

      • Travelgrrl

        I like Sally, Don, Bob Benson, Stan and Henry. Liked Lane. Kind of like Roger, Joan, Bert and Peggy.

        Hate Lou,Ted, Jim, Pete, Trudy, Ginsberg, Roger’s daughter and Meredith.

        • http://tvblogster.blogspot.com Boop

          Where’s Bob Benson? He only exists in name. Did I miss him somewhere? We’ve had 3 episodes and no Bob.

          • sweetlilvoice

            I assume he may not appear again but I hope he does. Allison Brie is able to be on two shows. I want Trudy! I do adore the Smirnoff Vodka ads though with her during the commercials.

            • http://tvblogster.blogspot.com Boop

              Me too! I want a car to take me across the street so I won’t fall on my ass because of my fuck me shoes!

        • Glammie

          You don’t like Trudy? I love Trudy. She’s retro, but she handed Pete’s ass to him amazingly. Plus, she wore some awesome hats pre-baby and nailed the Charleston.

          I also like poor Ken, who’s not on anyone’s list. I hope he writes a best-selling roman a clef in the 1980s. Or wins a Hugo or Nebula–like Gene Wolfe, who was an editor at a trade mag for years.

    • Ayame4

      I can’t decide, which is Fred and which is Shaggy?!

      • AnneElliot

        I think Stan has to be Shaggy, with that fabulous beard. Though he’s smarter than Ginsberg — and Ginsberg is kind of scruffy. So maybe Stan is Fred?

        • Kit Jackson 1967

          Stan is Fred, Ginsberg is Shaggy, if you base it on personality/character type and not on looks

    • Sonia Perez

      YOU guys SEE so much that are initially waaaay over my head!!!! I really admire your insight!

      That last sentence/pic was perfectly hilarious!!!!

    • suzq

      We’ve gone from Mary Tyler Moore to Scooby Doo. You guys are a hoot!

    • Man Dala

      Megan’s agent’s desk is gorgeous. Want, need. I liked how you went down ‘memory lane’ with the crocheted skirts, I was born in 1969 and remember my mum having a blouse like the one Megan wears in the first scene.

    • Mars Tokyo

      Ginsberg wears clothes that are two or three sizes too big for him. I wonder if his character is supposed to have been fat once. Lack of taste is one thing, but deliberately billowing shirts and sweaters? WTF

      • Shawn EH

        Comfort? Loose clothing is more comfortable. Or hand-me downs from someone bigger?

        • http://howtofaint.tumblr.com/ How to Faint

          I bet it’s hand-me-downs from his dad (who is a bigger dude) coupled with second hand clothes and impressively bad taste for an artist.

      • Qitkat

        No discretionary spending? We’ve seen his father once or twice, he might even still live with him, and possibly help support him?

      • ShaoLinKitten

        I figured he was too cheap to get his clothes tailored. He comes from a poor background and may not be the type of person to loosen up on the purse strings. Also, not to be stereotypical, but he’d probably dress better if there were any women in his life at all (though he doesn’t deserve one with the stank attitude he is dishing out to Peggy these days).

      • Travelgrrl

        Since he was born in a concentration camp and then was in an orphanage, I’m guessing: no.

      • Babyboomer59

        Since he lives with his father I picture him borrowing his clothes.

    • Uncivil_Servant

      Does Jim’s suit on the day Don shows up strike anyone else as being a shark-skin grey color with a blueish tint?

    • rottenkitty

      Thank you so much for your comments about Joan and her costume. Since the show aired, I’ve seen so many “Joan is a bitch” comments without one of them understanding why Joan is justifiably pissed at Don. He almost tanked the company and more so than any of the men in the agency, if the agency fails, she’s in much more financial jeopardy.

      And I was trying to figure out what the story was with Joan’s red rose dress. Thank you for such an insightful take on it!

      • Travelgrrl

        I’m still mad at her. Don has treated her better and more equitably than any man at that business, other than perhaps Lane.

        But she’ll come around.

    • insomniacattack

      I’ve been a bit preoccupied with the use of office space as it applies to the motifs of this season. This week, I’m thinking about Don being assigned to Lane’s office. A lot of people here seemed to think that Peggy is currently occupying that office. If she is, then Don’s return is literally bumping her down the (office space) food chain. In either case, it seems to reiterate some of the partners’ hope that Don will hang himself with the new arrangement, allowing the partners to reabsorb his shares and be done with him for good. Meanwhile, Don’s acceptance of the new arrangement with the new office reinforces the change in his character. He’s not the same Don Draper who occupied his old (Lou’s) office. He’s not trying to go back, he’s trying to go in a different direction: forward on his purification journey through purgatory.

      • insomniacattack

        Oh and Don sitting in the creative room in both a local and maximal scope limbo, no one inviting him into their office, was one of the most anxiety-filled sequences for me in Mad Men. His acquisition of an office—any office—anchors him somewhere. That anchor being in NY, and Megan’s move toward a breakup, seems to close California to him a bit more. His position in the world is coming further into the focus,

      • Qitkat

        What an interesting take on the office shuffle. And now where will Peggy be sent? Girl, stand up for yo’self!

        • insomniacattack

          Seriously. Everything about Peggy’s office space situation this season screams, “Get the hell out of there!”

          • insomniacattack

            Oh and, well, everything else to do with Peggy’s office situation. Period.

            • sweetlilvoice

              I’ve been screaming that since the merger. There’s no way she can work there long term. It’s a horrible place for her.

    • stonecoldcuddlewhore

      everytime I see Ginz and Stan next to each other, I think of Lennon and McCartney from the White Album years….or maybe Abbey Road. Whenever John had his beautiful facial hair.

    • Qitkat

      Ohh, Peggy, how much do I want you to have a wake-up call before the next episode? Step out of your pity party, and take a good look around at the office. Joan is really starting to OWN her look, and self-confidence. Dawn has immediately upgraded from the plainer secretary look to serious business attire, while keeping some color and interest. Even little miss perky clueless there behind you (I’ve forgotten her name) has a well-defined, more memorable look. Peggy is wearing a bland almost colorless suit here, I like it much better without the matronly jacket, but does she even have the panache to put a pin or colorful scarf on it? No, and thus it reflects her sad-sack attitude. I like the dark teal dress better, but that is also somewhat designed to make her disappear into the background, it has no added elements that give it more fashion appeal. She just looks dated in these scenes, reflected in her treatment of almost everybody, someone full of resentment at the current hand of cards she has been dealt, refusing to adapt. Lou is a dinosaur, Don is returning, creative has become stale. It is the ripe time for her to show that she can succeed in this boys’ club. But she will have to out-clever and be better than any of the men to get noticed. She needs to recover her equanimity, her ambition, and become lively and interesting without kowtowing to lesser talents.
      DO NOT DISAPPOINT ME, PEGGY!

      • Shawn EH

        Or Stan. Stan is feeling a bit disappointed lately too, I think.

        • Qitkat

          Team Steggy! Professional only, not romantic.

          • Kit Jackson 1967

            Team Steggy, however it hapens!

      • Glammie

        So true. But it occurs to me that this is why Don’s return will be a good thing for her. He may be an asshole to her, but he completely believes in her and her talent and whether she likes it or not, he knows how to pull good work out of her.

        • Qitkat

          I’d like to think they need each other, and hopefully will realize it soon, so the good work can turn into great collaborative work. They both have to cool it on being assholes though.

          • Glammie

            Yep. That may be the big moral of the story for everyone on Mad Men. Of course, one of the things we see is how once-nice people become assholes over time. Harry was a nice guy once. Ken never yelled at anybody. Peggy was sweet.

            • Babyboomer59

              I’ve never viewed Peggy as sweet. I see her as someone who knows to seem pleasant to a person if they are of use to her but will turn around and belittle them if it suits her.

    • Glammie

      Okay, so I’m randomly noticing all the pocket square variations: the younger guys don’t wear them at all. Don only wears them in interviews and they’re minimal. Cutler’s is also simple, but bigger than Don’s. Bert’s is all angular points and Roger’s are colorful and ruffled and, amusingly, even Roger’s bathrobe has an exquisite pocket square–Roger, even at his most dissolute, will always be a silver-spoon baby. And, damn, the level of detail is just amazing. I know I’m going to go look at Pete’s now–I sort of remember double points . . .

      • Qitkat

        I noticed those too! All the fun variations. Recently I was actually wondering what Tom and Lorenzo would have to say about pocket squares. Mr Q and I went to dinner at a nice restaurant, where, in Denver, you only have to dress up if you want to, except at a very few high-end places. He was wearing a sports jacket, but no tie, and I added a pocket square from a very small scarf of mine for a pop of color, but I didn’t know how to shape it, so I was slightly dissatisfied with the result, although the pop of design and color added so much for such a simple trick.

        • Glammie

          Yeah, I think of pocket squares as formal–more East Coast than West Coast. Though Roger’s having the most fun with his. Both he and Bert, though, are sort of dandies–they enjoy their clothes. Yes, I have to go check out Pete’s past pocket squares and downhome Ken’s from Vermont.

          • Qitkat

            /chuckle/ Nothing dandy about Mr Q, but I think he appreciated my effort, especially since he hears about bitter kitten, TLo comments all.the.time.

      • Babyboomer59

        When the British owners came to visit both Roger and Bert wore the 3 point pocket.

    • gogobooty

      I really thought Betty’s hair/outfit when she had lunch with Francine was working the ETHYL KENNEDY style. Moneycasual.

    • elevan

      It can go without saying that Lou sucks & at best can be considered merely “adequate” as a Creative Director. His concerns lie with doing the bare minimum that merely gets the job done, at minimal time & cost, & with no regards for striving for doing the best (let alone even good) work so long as the client’s buying.

      However, there’s some things in this week’s episode that make me believe that Lou LITERALLY has it out for Peggy. The big thing is that Peggy’s ad didn’t get submitted to the Clio’s. You can tell Lou is a bad liar, & I have no doubts that Cutler probably didn’t even hear a thing about it let alone make the decision. And what a bullshit-sounding explanation he offered up.The other telling thing came when Don called Dawn & she mentioned the Mountain Dew ad. She starts to describe it to Don, but he doesn’t need her to continue; he’s heard it all before. “Ginsberg finally got that through.” So something that Ginsberg pitched before & Don shot down (sounded like multiples times, maybe?) for not being good enough got pushed through by Lou.

      Consider that Lou was brought in to SC&P by Duck Phillips. Duck gives no shits about that company. The last time he saw Don & Peggy, he came into the office drunk as a skunk after Peggy rejected him both sexually & professionally. He then proceeded to call Peggy a whore, get into a fistfight with Don, & nearly shat in Roger’s chair. And he thought Peggy was sleeping with Don to help her career. I’m sure that while setting everything up with Lou, Duck regaled him about how he hates Don & what a terrible slut Peggy is.

      I think between a mixture of sexism & negative bias against Peggy, that Lou is consciously pushing down Peggy & her work, & as a consequence Ginsberg is reaping all the rewards. Literally, even. Kind of ironic when they’re outside Lou’s office discussing the Clio’s, Peggy defends her disappointment in not getting nominated- “I’m not taking anything away from anybody.”

      I surmise Ginsberg is feeding on Lou’s negative energy, leading to his sudden nastiness. He always had a problem with having a filter when he talks, but his jabs at Peggy this season have been particularly biting. So much so (as others have mentioned) that Stan keeps glaring at him like he wants to kill him for saying those things to her. But Lou’s putting Peggy down is helping his career. Perhaps he’s joining in with Lou subconsciously, or maybe he’s counting on Peggy breaking down & quitting, landing him the job as Copy Chief.

      • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

        That all makes sense…..plus countdown to Stan taking Michael down……..I’m betting on Stan to win : )

        • gogobooty

          Stan has given Ginsburg some hard looks the last couple of episodes when G is a dick to Peggy. “WTF is wrong with you?” hard looks.

          • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

            I wonder what will get rid of Lou (his contract lasts well into the early 70s)

            • Babyboomer59

              I picture Don using clients to point out the inadequacy of Lou. Everything evolves around what the client wants. Sal was let go that way and Lou can go that way also.

            • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

              I want that inverted Mister Rogers out : )

      • ShaoLinKitten

        I thought the same thing while watching Lou’s BS. Jim Cutler also sounded full of crap. This is an ADVERTISING AGENCY. Creative doesn’t matter? Sounds like he would say any crazy thing to keep Don out, favoring his own people over anyone from the SCDP staff.

        • Qitkat

          I nearly fell off the couch hearing ‘creative doesn’t matter.’ What an outrageous thing to believe, or say, or think, in an ad agency.

          • elevan

            Next time Ted’s around, one of the other partners better quote him on that.

        • Luke

          I think Cutler was using the “creative doesn’t matter/we need a computer” one-two punch to try and sway the partners against keeping Don. They all know that creative is suffering under Lou, but they also know that paying Don while he’s on leave is money they could be spending elsewhere. He was just trying force them in to a fish or cut bait decision.

          • ShaoLinKitten

            I think you’re right, but I couldn’t believe how little horror was expressed at the sentiment. Honestly, no one but Roger goes to bat for creative? How was Jim’s gambit not laughed right out of the office? It really indicates just how many people Don has alienated. I loved Roger so much in that moment. He’s great when he has a fire in his belly about something (denoted by the red plaid?).

            • Luke

              Also remember that what ever Roger says, Cutler will usually say the opposite. Roger says Creative, Cutler says Media. Roger says cake, Cutler says pie. He knows Roger wants Don back, so he immediately went on the offensive.

            • ShaoLinKitten

              Ooooh, do you think that’s why Cutler gave Joan the good office upstairs? Buttering her up so that she’d be more inclined to side with him against Roger in future partnership wrangling?

            • Kit Jackson 1967

              That was my thought.

            • Luke

              I wouldn’t bet against it. Cutler’s playing the long game while everyone else is caught up in territorial squabbles. My real question is: will his machinations pay off, or will he be hoisted by his own petard? I have to say that this is probably the role of Hamlin’s career, or at the very least the best one I’ve seen him in for a long time. He loses himself in Cutler.

            • ShaoLinKitten

              What’s so funny is that I am watching the first season of Veronica Mars right now, and it’s so easy to forget that the same guy who plays Jim Cutler also plays Logan’s evil father Aaron, who is an actor. As a clip of one of Aaron’s old movies, they showed a scene from Clash of the Titans. I cracked up!

              As for whether or not Jim will succeed in ousting Roger and Don… not sure. As long as Don brings in more money than he costs the firm, Bert will keep him. You can count on those Objectivists to attend to the bottom line. I can’t imagine Pete or Ted going for “creative doesn’t matter.” Joan is gunshy, and rightly so. I guess it all hinges on how Don conducts himself. I’m surprised to find myself rooting for a Don Draper redemption. Remind me that people don’t change, please.

            • elevan

              I feel like I haven’t seen enough of the new mopey Ted “just cash the checks” Chaough to try to predict where he’s headed yet. However, I’m certain he would NEVER throw Creative under the bus. Pete’s on really good terms with Don right now. Don met up with him in L.A., they had lunch, Pete hugged him. HUGGED HIM.

              That, & in that scene Pete straight up said “You know if it was up to me, you’d be back there already.”

              Once the California people catch wind of this, there may be a big kink in Cutler’s plans. If Roger’s smart, by the next episode he should have done (or at least be in process of doing) just that. You just know Pete will flip out.

            • Shawn EH

              He’s certainly progressed beyond being the “gray ghost” haunting the hallways already this season. He’d hate to be viewed as an adversary.

      • AutumnInNY

        I agree. I forgot Lou was brought in by Duck. Those two are cut from the same cloth. Duck is a vindictive bastard and
        Lou is everyone’s worst boss ever. Two peas. I can’t wait for the episode when Don somehow, someway, hands him his
        arrogant hack head on a plate.

        • Babyboomer59

          Duck would love nothing better than providing an inadequate leader to the company that rejected him. Just another way for him to take a dump in their office.

      • DemmeFatale

        I will never, ever, forgive Duck, (and anyone he pals around with), for kicking out the family dog.

    • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

      Is it just me or do Joan’s florals and prim do along with Peggy’s do and icy blue suit tie in with Betty? Or maybe I just feel that their characters are taking the plunge like Betty did in terms of likability………

    • LorrainePromo

      I had a blue skirt and vest set in elementary school. Yes, grandma made a set for all her grandchildren, had a cool poncho too! I thought the mystery girl at the dinner was the stewardess from earlier. He didn’t recognize her without her uniform.

      • Gatto Nero

        Different name.

    • AutumnInNY

      That last shot! hahaha….perfect. A van and a great dane. thank you for making a girl laugh on rough Wednesday.Love you TLo!

    • Blueathena623

      Gah, I didn’t even notice that Betty didn’t eat her food during her lunch with Francine. Between her not eating the salad and refusing to eat dinner because of her snit fit, I don’t blame Bobby for not associating the extra food with her. And I looooooove that she is wearing her own version of Francine’s salmon Full-filled Woman suit. Haha Francine, I’m sure that showed you!

    • Lady Bug

      Love the Scooby Doo gang! Peggy, Ginz, Stan and Meredith quit the ad business to travel around in a Volkswagen bus solving mysteries..I sense a great MM spinoff!

      • AnneElliot

        Yes, but I can’t decide whether Stan or Ginsberg is supposed to be Shaggy. Hilarious!

        • Kit Jackson 1967

          Ginsberg is totally Shaggy.

    • Therese Bohn

      Surprised that you didn’t mention Joan’s BOOTS. I think this is the first time we’ve ever seen her in a fashion boot in the office or anywhere. All I can think of is… “These boots were made for walkin’, and that’s just what they’ll do, One of these days these boots are gonna Walk All Over You!” (Don!)

      I love these MadFashion recaps! Today is my birthday and this was the icing on the cake!

      • Kathryn Sanderson

        Happy Birthday!

      • BluesD

        Happy birthday! Mad Style is the best present. :)

    • Dagney

      I need, NEED, Meghan’s shirt. I need it in my closet.

    • http://trufcreative.com/ monomatica

      LOL I’m dying. I was Velma one year for Halloween wearing all vintage attire. I gasped when I saw Betty looking PERFECT in that peach suit and red lipstick. God, January is stunning. But she does seem to be starving herself and I wonder if they will write that in. And I loved Joan’s dress. Good analysis and back track on the red roses. I also thought it signified she is feeling more comfortable and at ease in the agency, and at being a partner. Go go boots and a fairly loose fitting, slightly A-line dress. Different compared to the hip-hugging shift dress “uniform” she wore in the early 60s.

    • Chris

      Another great post TLo! Two quick questions about the opening scene. Do you think the blue and the pattern of Don’s sweater in the movie theater is a callback to that blue robe he wears to lounge about the house? It made me think it was another instance of Don escaping into the screen (like he does with the TV at home).

      Second, I thought the little green car that zipped by in the movie sequence was the same car Megan was driving at the airport. Am I seeing things??

      • decormaven

        No, the car in the movie shown in the first of the episode is an MG.

    • Lobelia

      The woman at the Algonquin Hotel: maybe another pawn (just as Neve Campbell in the previous episode) to reinforce the fact that Don couldn’t care less about women in this season? It seems that since the “issue” at the Hershey’s meeting, he doesn’t need to take shelter under a skirt anymore.

      But for a moment, I thought it was a Don’s dream: another agency making a good salary offer, a woman inviting him to her bed, Roger saying he misses him…

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      OMG-yes, I had the crotcheted vest-courtesy of my grandmother, who went through a big, big crotchet phase, during which all of her granddaughters received the crotcheted vests, handbags, scarves and cloche hats. I might even still have one or two that I saved for sentiment’s sake.
      Also, I vividly remember blouses of the type worn by Megan-those psychedelic, Peter Max type of prints on sheer fabric. I once tried on a sheer blouse, knowing that I’d never have the nerve to wear one without a bra.

    • Nancy Aronson

      Tx. Look forward to checking it out.

    • http://twitter.com/uhleckseee Uhleckseee

      Perhaps Joan is wearing roses because she is practically married to this job now. And the red roses on a black background suggest that this is another scene where she is protecting herself in regards to the relationship at hand. She’s doing what she feels is best for the “marriage,” which involves harsh action.

    • Columbinia

      Betty in her Nixon women outfits was perfect. Insofar that someone like Julie Nixon wore a pantsuit in private, Francine was also of the Nixons. Apparently Pat Nixon and her daughters decided that they should be exemplars of traditional femininity and to that end only wore skirts and dresses in public, no pants. They were going to face down the counter culture from the East Wing of the White House. The First Lady’s office did press releases on Pat, Tricia and Julie’s purchases at places like Priscilla of Boston, describing the mint, yellow, orange sherbet, aqua, pink and powder blue day dresses and suits that they bought.

      Peggy is a bad dresser, isn’t she? But the teal dress is one of her better looks — nothing great, but self-respecting business wear. The powder blue suit, on the other hand, is in the Nixon color range. I like the collar on it, but it’s veering close to a female version of a pastel leisure suit. And at the moment that she uttered her rude dismissal of Don to his face, it made her look like that stuffy, middle-aged school principal or teacher who has decided to be extra mean.

      Dawn does have better dress sense than Peggy. But then Africa Americans of that era were very aware of how clothing labelled them and more likely to think it through than Peggy or Joan, who are groping their way through how to present themselves in the white male workplace. I doubt a person like Don thought he was mistreating a secretary. Secretaries were meant to take care of guys like him. And as he sat there in that work room, almost looking like a kid waiting in a schoolroom, Don needed to assert all the alpha male status he could muster.

      It is fascinating to look at how much of the long hair, wide ties and brighter colors the executives at the ad agency adopt. The Hollywood agent most looks like the times. Pete and Harry have taken on the long sideburns, and the creative rank and file are looking suitably scruffy. The rest of the ad execs look they haven’t caught up to 1969.

      Which brings us to Joan. The rose-print dress is awfully soft and feminine. She’s never been afraid of being attractive while running the day-to-day workings of the office. But this dress perhaps speaks to her limits, her lack of vision. She’s not looking beyond the way she’s always done things. She seemingly has no larger vision for where the agency is going. She just likes an orderly day at the agency. And there’s that magnificent white, shoulder-strap briefcase of hers, again, looking like a Mary Kay executive.

      • verve

        Joan was part of the little group testing the waters for an IPO for SC&P; I wouldn’t say she has no vision for the company.

        • SylviaFowler

          But she didn’t have the vision to let founding partners in on what she was doing. She only holds 5% in that partnership. That move was incredibly presumptuous.

          • verve

            Bert Cooper was involved, as was Pete Campbell.

      • Babyboomer59

        I have always pictured Peggy being helped with her clothes shopping by her mother or her sister. She had years of their influence before entering the working world of Manhattan

    • lillyvonschtupp

      Isn’t that girl who hit on Don the stewardess who is on when he flies to LA?

      BTW, I WANT Betty’s blue handbag. That bag is bangin’!

      • BluesD

        Nope, two different girls who look really similar.

    • lillyvonschtupp

      Could Joan’s outfit say “I’m over it!” even more? Plus the black boots and red watch to match. It’s really cool.

    • Luke

      I like how Harry’s California sunshine is encroaching in to Cutler’s slate-colored New York world.

    • ferngilly

      Hans Hartung in Jim Cutler’s office? Interesting motif with the zebra rug.

    • brown-eyed girl

      I have to say that I have rarely watched Mad Men, but I have read every one of TLo’s posts about the program.

    • Tee

      I think Dawn is channeling Diahann Carroll. She was a TV nurse on a show called “Julia”.

      • Alice Teeple

        Ohhh. That must have been why Lou Avery made the “nurse” crack at her in the office.

        • Joe Mitstein

          Absolutely.

    • n0er

      that’s harry’s office with the zebra skin rug.

      • n0er

        Jim’s office is above Ted’s and has the same layout. the desk would be to the right of the door in that shot.

      • n0er

        plus the zebra (sort of) goes with the herringbone in harry’s jacket

      • Babyboomer59

        No that is Jims office. Right before that scene it shows Harry sitting at his desk. His office is decorated in a very traditional old fashioned way with heavy wood. His secretary lets him know mr Cutler wamts to see him. Jim’s office is sleek with grey sofa grey abstract painting to match his ghost grey image.

    • Luke

      The other thing I noticed about this episode was Don’s hat and coat. Firstly that he approached nearly everyone with his hat in his hand, both literally and figuratively, and secondly how drab and dated it looked walking through the colorful halls of SC&P. It really made him look out of place, like an old piece of furniture covered by a dingy sheet. It wasn’t until he took it off and revealed his more vulnerable brown/orange color scheme that he started to look more like he belonged there. This may not be a NEW Don, but it is a different Don. This is Don without his armor.

      • Travelgrrl

        I noticed that the creatives were happy enough (if surprised) to see him, while the higher ups were having a fit!

      • 28fairplay

        All of the men entering the building were wearing similar raincoats. It was standard issue at the time. I’m not finding Don’s clothes particularly dated. The fitted suits, wide ties, and brash colors and plaids are just around the corner, but not here yet. Sadly, we won’t get to see if Don goes with the flow, or sticks to his tried and true.

      • SylviaFowler

        Or it makes him look classic and timeless and the SCP people look like lemmings.

    • Carrie Schiff

      Notice how Betty’s outfit and hair match the waitress in the coffee shop with Francine. The cut of her dress is very similar to the maid in her kitchen in the scene when she gets home from the coffee shop. Betty as Domestic Goddess!

      • Shawn EH

        Her maid who rises when Betty enters, just so Betty gets to cluck cluck “don’t be silly.” They never let you forget the class distinctions on this show.

        • Babyboomer59

          Plus how Betty shuts off the small TV because the servant should not be able to watch that while helping a child with home work. I notice Betty hired an older woman this time who she would expect to know her place better than Carla did.

    • http://toongrrl.deviantart.com/ Toongrrl

      Why nothing on Bobby’s teacher and her father and the other kids and Moms? D :

    • Prairie

      Portrait Collar!

    • Prairie

      That peacock graphic in the background was one of the hottest images going for the time. Screen prints flooded the arts in the 70′s.

      • P M

        That’s been there in the office for a few seasons now, I think.

        • decormaven

          You are correct.

        • sweetlilvoice

          Isn’t that Peggy’s piece that she takes with her when she leaves? I may be getting confused.

    • lillyvonschtupp

      Could the browns Don is wearing some symbol of a possible move to LA?

      • P M

        Could be. Someone else pointed out he seems to be moving in Ted’s direction, suit colour-wise.

        • Lady Bug

          There seems to be so many different meanings in that suit. I noticed the Ted Chaough brown, someone down thread noticed that the shades of yellow in the tie reflected the new SC&P logo colors. In T&Lo’s review of “In Care Of”, they noted that almost all of the characters where wearing variants SC&P yellow-except Don. Another area of interpretation, for the past few seasons, the show has really emphasized just how out of touch Don is with the younger generation. Remember the “Beatles” episode where he’s not even quite sure what the Beatles sound like?
          Don is never going to be Stan casual, or Harry fashionplate, but the brown suit seems more in lined with the fashion of the day than the grey flannel suits Don is usually wearing.

    • P M

      This is likely already in the comments, but man, there are a lot of loud buzzing prints going on in the costumes this episode. Lots of internal confusion for the characters?

      And Megan’s print – a wild profusion of colours (to go with a mixed, confused day for her) in her Macrame Horror outfit.

    • bingo

      Your Scooby-Doo shot at the end was spot on–Bravo on the screen cap and insight!

    • 28fairplay

      I think it was so important to the episode for Betty and Bobby to go to the country to visit an idyllic farm that the writers did not take reality into consideration. The sandwich incident could have occurred anywhere.

    • ItAin’tMe

      I love the analysis of Joan’s dress, makes me want to go back and watch the other episodes you mentioned.
      One thing that bothers me: it’s 1968. The younger men should all have long hair by now, at least past their collars. Michael and Stan are the only ones even close. Even some of the old guys would’ve been affecting longer styles by now. And the green shirt/green jacket guy would certainly have rocked more hair, as would have Megan’s agent.

    • MartyBellerMask

      I love how Joan’s outfit perfectly matches Bert’s office. (The dress colors match the globe, the locket matches the gold faux bamboo window cover & umbrella stand.) They have a connection, and she belongs there.
      Also, how about that “Baby” Gene. He’s not a baby anymore, but Betty sure dresses him like he is. I love his sweater.

    • Holly Krahe

      Sure wish I could see all the pix – most of the ones at the beginning are missing both on phone and desk computer :(

      • Qitkat

        That seems odd; have you checked with your Internet Provider and cell company? They might be able to help. Or a different browser, or even talk to someone at a Best Buy or office store. Do an internet search. Lots of answers out there. Must be a setting that is blocking them.

        • Holly Krahe

          As I stated, the problem was with BOTH my desktop and my phone – two different carriers, two different browsers. AND some of the pictures showed up just fine, but the ones at the beginning of the post did not. The problem is not me, it is the way those pictures were posted, I think.

          • Qitkat

            But if no one else has complained about this issue? It seems that it must reside within your system.
            I’m on a Mac and can see them all on my desktop and iPad, Comcast provider, Safari browser. I’ve never checked the site with a phone.
            Good luck with making this problem go away for you. I’d be frustrated too.

    • scarglo

      Megan’s outfit is a crochet pattern called hairpin lace. And, yes, I too had a shawl and long skirt that my mother-in-law made – circa 1974. BTW, I love the insightfulness of this blog.

    • Danielle

      Betty asked Francine if she’d attained her realtor license yet, am I right? I think it’s interesting that ‘real estate agent’ seems to be subtly pushed as one of the routes for women to take up a professional career at this time – Bonnie is a real estate agent, and Peggy’s realtor last season was also a woman. Interesting, though, that it’s a job that is almost inescapably tied to the idea of home and domesticity, even if it does involve sales.

      And it’s notable that, other than Peggy, Joan and (now) Dawn, every other working woman on the show has a job which can still be configured as traditionally feminine in a regressive way: secretary (serving men), teacher (looking after children), actress (trading on your beauty); Avon/Mary Kay rep (creating feminine appearances).

      Things are changing, but they’re changing slowly. We’re still a few years away from Ms. magazine and the ERA.

      • P M

        In a sense, it’s a ‘well, duh’ conclusion: women like to look at their neighbours houses and they like to decorate, plus, the men may not necessarily understand the minutiae of the industry – or more realistically, care – therefore, it’s ‘wimminz work’. (Or maybe I’m just blathering)

      • P M

        But what about Dr. whatshername in the first season and that other marketing lady Don was seeing right before Megan?

        • T C

          Weren’t they both single? Some women, even ages ago, chose careers before marriage and family. My father’s two sisters earned Masters Degrees in the 1920s and pioneered their way into senior management by 1960, although they were in Social Services and Education respectively.

    • http://jeannieeurich.wordpress.com/ Jeannie Eurich

      I liked how Joan’s outfit copies Shirley’s outfit (down to the boots) from last week. I almost imagine Joan seeing Shirley’s outfit, admiring it, and going out to buy something similar.

      • P M

        That’s what I thought too. I prefer the length of Joan’s dress, though.

    • Katie

      Thank you, TLo, for your great review as always. As you’ve pointed out, you’re not just reviewing clothes, you’re analyzing how the wardrobe is indicative of character and plot development. Your explanation of the meaning behind Joan’s dress truly helped me better understand the character’s motivations in this episode. Probably because I still love Don (despite his epic bullshit), I was a little taken aback by how angry and distant Peggy and Joan still seemed to be after such a long absence. But you’re right – Don is just like Greg in his rash decision-making and messing up of Joan’s well-layed plans. Also, using Peggy’s outfit to remind us how unbelievably disappointed she was about the merger and its fallout helped me to understand her anger as well. Also, love the point about the creative department being so uncreative in dress. Thanks so much for enhancing my viewing of an already fantastic show.

    • Lady Bug

      Thank you so much for the link! Gorgeous sets, you can tell that the crew on MM spends a great of time & effort on every aspect of the show.

    • Saturnine

      Oh good lord–A van and a great Dane–wine all over the keyboard.
      I *did* have a crocheted skirt, along with a matching poncho and hat. My mom still has them. Gorgeous oranges, red, and rust tones.
      My dad, actual Mad Man (art direction, not account side) will still only wear his circa ’65 brown ties.

    • Tricia

      This has probably already been addressed in the comments, but does anyone know what movie Don went to see in the beginning? I’m rewatching the ep now and it’s driving me crazy.

    • T C

      Been lurking far too long, thank you so much Uncles for your dedicated and passionate work all these seasons.

      Did anyone else notice the contrast of Francine’s twisted bra strap to the missing bras of both Megan and Bobby’s teacher? The blue in Don’s cardigan at the movies scarily echoes Lou’s and could foreshadow Don’s work as merely “adequate” until he gets the lay of the land at SC&P. Timing is everything when planning on changing the conversation.

    • SparkleNeely

      This was only an OK episode for me. I can’t wait until Don really starts back at the office. Hopefully, the plot will pick up. It’s not as exciting as S6, nor is the wardrobe as interesting. Seems drab.

    • P M

      I just had to point out Cooper’s look of distaste as he lets Joan come into his office with footwear – gasp! – on. :D

    • DivaDebbi

      Omg the Scoobie Doo wrap up was brill! Thank you for shedding some light on Joan’s malice towards Don. It was confusing in light of the warmer moments in their history.

    • Apple Tree

      Oh, Betty, we need to see more of you. I’m a little sad no one (?) points out the – rare as hen’s teeth – actual lesbian sexual tension on Mad Men! Betty and Bobby’s teacher, anyone? I’m sooo happy people talk her subtextually presented struggle with eating, not only her infamous ice queen status, but ahhh, did you see that? As one review @complex.com puts it nicely in words, “Field Trip is about what happens when fantasies don’t go as we dreamed. Betty’s beautiful day as a mother and a housewife is subverted by sexual tension and then undone by gumdrops”. No, I don’t think Matthew Weiner will go as far to make Betty a queer character (although, by all means, Matthew), but before the series ends, in order to pay respect to Betty’s potential as a character, her worldview needs to be a little shattered, her values somewhat changed – exactly this way, through those small moments of “it’s not ‘normal’ and it’s ok”. I don’t expect a sudden, radical transformation, too late for that (50′s perfect housewife on a road to self-discovery through 60s – we could have had it all) and MM isn’t exactly a happy-ending kind of a show, but let. her. evolve. naturally.

    • Elizabeth Moore

      I wonder if we’ll ever live in a world in which women – in real life and in fiction – are not expected to be perfect mothers.

    • ideated_eyot

      You might have missed the few seconds that Clara was onscreen, but everything about her look was worth commenting on.

    • malarkey

      the Scooby Doo reference made me laugh out loud, seriously.

    • Sweetvegan

      Excellent, TLo!
      And no pussy bows for Dawn – she ironed that tie collar flat, and then single-knotted it to resemble a man’s tie.

    • Iv Barn

      how could you not point out that don was dressed in chocolate brown on his first day back, when he was fired over the hersheys account!? i always try and guess what you guys will say and I am surprised you didnt catch that one

    • Susan Dognaux

      But what about Harry’s office?! Why is the most future/foward thinking staff person in an antique store of an office? I was so confused and was looking forward to you all explaining that to me!

    • yiqiu1122

      I really like the big white bag Joan’s carrying this season. Want it!