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Mad Men Open Thread: The Color Blue

Don_award_mad_menSo, man, some fairly serious stuff went down this episode, no? Or rather, the beginnings of some fairly serious stuff went down, just in time for them to announce that there are only three episodes left in this season. Noooooooo!!!!

So, the title of last night's episode was hinted at during some pillowtalk between Don and Miss Farrell, who told him that one of her student's asked about whether everyone sees the color blue the same way. Throughout the episode, we saw a lot of shifting in the way people viewed each other.

Don's affair with Miss Farrell seemed to be a retreat to his old ways, but there is something very different about her. Yes, she's seemingly Betty's polar opposite (brunette, single, career-oriented), which is what Don always goes for, but her personality is very different from that of Bobbi Barrett or Midge or Rachel Menken. Part of the reason why Don was so attracted to them was the fact that none of them NEEDED Don, they just desired him. Miss Farrell NEEDS Don, to a somewhat stalkerish degree. Showing up on the train? Saying that stuff about how she doesn't care about his marriage or his job as long as he's with her? She's either incredibly naive or incredibly (but, I think, ultimately ineffectively) manipulative. And I feel like that was her that called the Drapers and hung up. She's bad news and if Don can't see that particular shade of blue then he's a fucking idiot.

I'm not sure what to think about Don's interactions with Miss Farrell's brother, Danny. Don apparently saw something of himself in Danny and his desire to slip away, unnoticed. What did Don mean when he said that he was going to do this right?

Betty_don_mad_men_1 Betty has always known (or known for a long time) that Don had secrets, but it wasn't until she gained access to his locked desk drawer that she knew the extent of them. Finding those pictures of him as a little boy and labeled "Dick" and the decree of divorce from Anna pretty much blew her mind. And she couldn't wait to confront him, but of course he was off "working late." And I'm sure she knew that that was bullshit, but she still attempted to be dutiful and sweet, noting earlier that she noticed how hard he was working. Later, when Don calls and tells her what time to be ready for the awards/anniversary party, she is outraged...until he basically calls her a trophy wife. This softens her, but as Don gets up to receive his award, she sees his faux-humble acceptance as just another lie.

Paul's perception of Peggy certainly changed. He had been clinging to the view that the other guys at his level seemed to have: that Peggy was just trying to edge them out by cuddling up to Don. But when she pulls the campaign for Western Union out of thin air in a most Draper-like stroke of brilliance, he sees that she is just really, really good at what she does and perhaps better than him and if she continues to move up in the industry, it's because she deserves it. Um, provided she doesn't sleep with Duck or anyone similar anymore.

Roger_bert_mad_men_1 Sterling Cooper is once again up for sale, so I imagine we'll be seeing the fallout from that in the next few episodes.

Once again there was no Joan (booo!) but she's in the previews for next week's episode having an ominous-sounding conversation with Greg. Ugh. Hate that guy. Sal was also absent, but I can't believe that his dismissal will be the last that we hear of him.







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Comments

Pam

I can't figure out if Betty thought Don was married before (the Anna/Don divorce papers)... but I admit I'm knew to the show this year (I KNOW -- WHERE WAS I???) I am now the proud owner of Seasons 1 and 2 on DVD so I'm catching up. Did we see, in a previous season, that Betty knew of Don's past?

And the teacher? I see bad things there....

ClearlyDemented

I loved the ending. You could just feel all the things running through Betty's mind as Don was beginning to accept his award. I know these characters are more complicated than good guy/bad guy-type labels; but last night's episode, I really started seeing Don with a little more spite than awe. Like you, I can't wait to watch this all play out!

New Age Bitch

The Don and Danny thing was clearly Don's way of weaseling out of the guilt he feels over blowing off his own brother (who later killed himself as a result of the snub) to save his own ass. Don is wracked with guilt over a lot of things but pushes it away by being a jerk, sleeping around, etc etc etc. Don't we all know someone who denies their own pain somehow?

Suzy Q

I didn't understand why Don has the deed to the house that Anna lives in. I mean, obviously, he bought it for her; that's been said before. But, why isn't she in possession of the deed that bears her name? I know, I know; it's just TV, and it also gives Betty the address and the face-to-face with Anna will be something to behold. I'll bet Betty does that before she confronts Don.

Teacher = bad news.

I agree that we haven't seen the end of Sal just yet. He's still in the credits, so maybe he'll be working at the company that buys Sterling Cooper.

And - yay - we get Joan next week!

Sheryl

The only thing that bugged me about this episode were the two sets of dog tags in the box. Since he switched tags with Don, there's no way he could have both sets.

Sally Says

^ I think Adam sent Don his dog tags along with the other memorabilia in the box.

I agree that we haven't seen the last of Sal. I hope Duck hires him. And Joan... and Freddie Rumsden too! Don is really irritating me lately. His relationship with Miss Farrell is painful to watch.

Allison

@Sally Says... Freddy pissed his pants, which is probably almost as bad as getting your foot wacked off in the advertising world of the early 1960s. Sadly I don't think we'll see him again.

I'm so... scared to see how things will play out. This show must be good since I'm so emotionally invested in it.

Also, I totally empathized with Betty. Although nothing so life shattering has happened, I've definitely sat up waiting to attack after finding incriminating evidence on a significant other. It SUCKS when you don't get to follow through once you've built it up so much.

TasterSpoon

Agree that the Don and Danny thing was a reference to his own brother. He was taking the second chance to be "there" for someone.

I'm calling it: Duck's company is somehow going to buy Sterling Cooper. To which Don is now bound by contract for three years. Ouch. And it will be weird with Peggy.

Amy W.

Women weren't allowed to apply for credit on their own in the sixties, so the house would have been Don's, even though Anna was living in it.




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