Thursday, April 24, 2014

What I’m Watching: Mad Men

Mad Men: Season 7, Episode 2 “A Day’s Work” (B+)

After an uncertain start last week, I’m happy to report that this episode was a resounding success. Seeing how the firm functions on a bicoastal basis without watching a character traveling between the two is actually more compelling, particularly because of the bad connection that caused the partners’ meeting to devolve into an argument with many things overheard that shouldn’t have been. It’s interesting to see how each of the non-Don players are being repositioned, with Cutler and Roger going at each other and Ted being the too-calm peacemaker while Pete returns to his typical frantic jealous mode. The situation involving the secretaries in this episode made for fantastic television, namely due to Peggy’s gross assumption that the flowers sent were from Ted for her and not for her secretary. Lou’s treatment of Dawn was unnecessarily harsh, and it’s great to see that Joan managed to use the situation (and Cooper’s racism) to her advantage to let the one secretary who actually knows what she’s doing – Dawn – take over her responsibilities while she moves upstairs. Don being especially present in his social life is jarring to watch, but it proved very worthwhile for his time spent with Betty. It’s incredible to see him be so honest after she called him out for being dishonest and let him know how hard it was to think about running into Sylvia in his elevator. Don and Sally really are similar, and it’s terrific to see them spending time together as if they’re on the same level.

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