Monday, September 28, 2009

Mad Men

I am finally caught up with Mad Men this season. It is one of the few shows that B wants to watch with me, so when we have obstacles to watching TV together, as we have since Mad Men aired, we get extremely behind. Very frustrating!

And what a season Mad Men is having this year! I've heard a few complaints about how slow the show is this year, but I guess when you watch two or three episodes in a row, that complaint doesn't hold water.

Obviously I can't recap the past episodes, but I do think that I'll write a few comments on the characters:

Betty - Betty is a beautiful woman who has yet to understand that just because something is beautiful on the surface doesn't mean it is on the inside. She's clearly bored with raising children, and poor Sally has borne the brunt of that this season. But what we've learned the most about Betty is that she hasn't grown up. She's still a girl, waiting for her father or her husband to rescue her from her problems. I'll be honest here: I understand Betty, and I sympathize, but I don't really like her. She's too selfish and shallow.

Don - Don still has the wandering eye, which focuses on stewardesses and teachers alike. But he lost his independence in this past episode, and possibly a friend, as he signed away three years of his life to Sterling Cooper to capture an account. The episode in which Don takes care of Sally is touching - thank goodness that someone in her family is trying to understand her. I'm concerned that Don's relationship with Peggy is suffering because of her bad timing - the relationship between the two is a highlight of the show for me.

Joan - Poor Joan. Joan is easily my favorite character in the show, and this season has been extremely hard on her. First of all, too bad she actually married that loser who raped her last year. However, I did feel bad for him when he didn't get the chief resident position. But worse, she has to keep working. Sadly, she had already quit Sterling Cooper. And how valuable she was at Sterling Cooper - on her last day her quick thinking probably helped save the Brit's life. Go Joan. Her parting kiss with Don was fraught with many layers of meaning. I hope that she ends up back at Sterling Cooper, but it will take a big bite of her pride to do so.

Peggy - Wow - who thought of Peggy and Duck? I've always thought of Peggy as extremely lonely, and she must be to have fallen in bed with him. She knows she's betraying Don, but at the same time, there is quite a bit of unresolved anger between the two. Peggy has suppressed her feminine side to succeed in her career, but she still finds life empty. I don't think Duck will fill that hole. And by the way, I totally don't trust Duck's interest in her. I think his goal is to twist a knife in Don.

Pete - I laughed my head off when Pete discovered that he and Ken Cosgrove had both been promoted to the same position. He appears to be over the narcissistic injury, but not before he took his anger out on Ken. Like Peggy, Pete is being wooed by Duck to abandon Sterling Cooper for Duck's new firm. Unlike Peggy, Pete clearly doesn't trust Duck's motives. How interesting to watch Pete and Peggy this season! They are both clearly connected, even if neither wants to admit it. And I don't necessarily mean romantically.

Roger - Did anyone else squirm like I did when Roger serenaded his bride in black-face? Roger Sterling continues to get the best lines, but he's truly been in pain this season. First his daughter asks him to leave his child-bride at home for her wedding, then the new overlords of Sterling Cooper leave him off the organization chart. And the relationship between Don and Roger is possibly permanently fractured. I would miss that bro-mance!

The season is around half-way over. How's it been for you so far?

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