Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Review of Mad Men: Dawn Drapah's vigah!

To my extremely loyal Mad Men reader/fan base (currently numbering 1): I am sorry I am lagging behind in my reviews of the show. I have to watch the show via alternate means (euphemism for the internet) and with school in session, I don't get as much time to ponder over each episode as I would like to.

With that in mind, I will keep this short.

This was the penultimate episode of Season 4, and I think it was one of the strongest episodes of this season (right after the Don/Peggy duet). After a few lackluster episodes in the recent weeks, this was a mighty relief.

I am now convinced the main theme of Season 4 is change. Specifically, Don's quest to make significant changes in his life. And so it was ironic when Midge (a refreshing blast from the past, I might add) says, "You haven't changed, Don." How little she knows...

Don's full-page ad in the New York Times (a pretty gutsy albeit selfish move) shows a marked change in his outlook. Earlier in the season, he chewed Peggy out for orchestrating a catfight in a grocery store to attract sales for Ham. Now, as Peggy so adroitly reminds him, he does the exact same thing. His partners accuse him of trying to garner undue attention and humiliate/insult them, and I think I partially agree. By signing his name on the ad, Don pretty much makes a bold statement that he IS the agency.

His interaction with Midge also illustrates how much he has changed. Whereas a circa Season 2 Don would have gladly jumped in bed with her, Season 4 Don knows how disastrous that can be, and genuinely tries to stay away from her. Throughout the season, we have seen Don ask people to restrict him (e.g.: he tells Megan to make him stop at three drinks) and it's nice to see that he is finally paying due respect to self-control and discipline.

Even though the Betty-Sally-creepy Glen (who BTW is creator Matt Weiner's son. Talk about typecasting your own son) storyline did not appeal to me in the slightest, I liked this episode overall.

Finally, this was a episode full of many little memorable moments:

  • Don-Pete "bro" nod after Pete finds out Don bailed him out
  • Peggy and the rest of the minions desperately to eavesdrop on the partners
  • The absolutely hilarious Robert Kennedy prank call (and the inspiration for this post's title)
  • "Mr. Crane! OUT!"
Can't wait for the season finale. 

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