Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Mad Men: Season 5, Episode 4 “Mystery Date” (A-)
What an hour. This episode was so packed full of memorable moments and monumental scenes that my notes could three or four full reviews. Don’s cough permitted him a state of delirium usually afforded powerful protagonists (see Tony Soprano) in which he managed to hallucinate a passionate affair with the seductive Andrea, who came onto him in front of Megan in the elevator, as well as his subsequent murder by strangulation of her. The fact that he said “You better not ruin this” means a whole lot, since he’s never expressed that same kind of commitment to anyone, and certainly not Betty. Of course, in his dream, it was the thrill of cheating on his wife that really got him going. This could well be an Emmy episode for both Christina Hendricks and Elisabeth Moss. Greg’s homecoming seemed to be going well until Greg revealed that he was going back, and she even stood by him until she found out that he volunteered for the reassignment. Telling him that he was never a good man and that she didn’t want him to ever come back took courage, especially after he told her that he has his orders and so did she. Peggy bargaining with Roger for more money after he asked her to help on the pitch and then threatened to fire her was hilarious, but things got more serious when she found Dawn camping out in the office and invited her over. Asking her whether she thinks she acts like a man was particularly intriguing, and it’s always good to get a little alcohol in Peggy to lower her inhibitions. Michael is proving to be a fascinating character, getting upset that everyone was gawking at the murder photos and going too far after a successful pitch to oversell the client against Don’s wishes. It’s good to see Henry’s mother whip Sally into shape, forcing her to eat sandwiches, do chores, and telling her the whole truth after she proves too curious to learn about the murders.