TV Review: Mad Men Episode 7-Something’s Dirty!

Written by Spencer Sterritt May 02, 2012

Even Denver Isn’t This Rotten

It wasn’t what I would call a crackerjack episode of “Mad Men” last night, especially since it was the seventh episode and normally these mid-point episodes are great, a la ‘The Suitcase.’ What we got tonight was certainly a good episode, much better than last weeks, but something a little more typical. Megan’s parents were down to watch Don accept an award, and they brought enough negative feelings and disappointment to pack a whole season. Hopefully they stick around, because then I’ll get to talk about them more.

Seems like Roger’s LSD induced trip last episode is still kicking him around, as he tells Mona that he had “a life altering experience,” and is pretty charming the whole episode. He has a whole slew of great lines with Sally, who is down for the weekend due to her grandma babysitter tripping over the phone cord, all because Sally was talking to stupid Glen. If there’s one thing I hate about “Mad Men” it’s Glen and his terrible acting. I get why the show would want Sally to have someone just as disappointed as her, but I hate that they picked Matthew Weiner’s kid. It just seems like Weiner threw a pissfit and made them cast his son, because it definitely seems to me that Matthew Weiner is a pretty big dick. His son can’t act, he’s stiff, and is far, far too creepy for the role. Some people say “Stamos!” or “Joffery!” with anger and a clenched fist. I say “Glen!”

Okay, no more Glen. The big set pieces of the episode were a dinner where Megan realized SCDP was going to get canned from the Hienz account, and the award ceremony. For the award ceremony, Roger got a blowjob from Megan’s mother, Sally saw it, and Don realized that his stunt about cigarettes means the people who just gave him an award will never hire him. For me this was typical “Mad Men” as everyone did naughty things and looked sad. The final shot of the scene, as everyone sat around the table, was a knockout though. I would have personally ended the episode there. And for the Hienz dinner, Megan gets to shine as she unveils her pitch at the last moment, as her and Don work in perfect unison and really sparkle.

What I’m more interested in is Peggy, and how the generations at SCDP have changed again. I am still not sure if Peggy was legitimately disappointed that Abe did not propose, or if she recognized it as the same gesture just without a piece of paper. She seemed so happy at dinner until her mother started laying into her. I had totally forgotten that living together while unwed was considered living in sin, just one of those things that slipped my mind, so at first her mothers reaction seemed really strange, but now I dig it. Elizabeth Moss really nailed this episode, as she always does, and it was good to see her get a solid plot after last weeks ultimately disappointing resolution (I seem to be saying the word disappointed a lot. Just a reflection on a theme).

A Generation for Multiple Ages

Peggy’s generation is supposed to be a really radical one, with the pot smoking and the Warhol and the living in sin, but it’s looking more and more that Peggy and Pete and Ken are just a small part of Don and Roger’s generation. At the beginning of the show they were the young ones with promise who would change things, who would bring some modernity to Sterling Cooper. Pete was a lost cause on this front from the moment go, but I thought Peggy would maintain her stance as the radical one, what with her relationship with Abe and having hippie friends. But now it’s looking like Megan and Ginsberg are the radical generation. Right around the time those two were hired Peggy became part of Don’s generation, and Megan is going to be the one to incite real change. There are now three generations (four if you include Cooper) working inside SCDP, and with two generations of failed dreams and one generation of promise, some serious drama is sure to unfold.

You know, at the beginning of this review I said that this wasn’t exactly a crackerjack episode of “Mad Men,” but I’ve changed my mind. Thinking it over while writing this review, there was a lot of really good stuff going on in the episode, which I don’t have time to get to, but even with the Peggy plot alone, this has become in my mind a standout traditional episode of “Mad Men.”


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About Spencer Sterritt

Spencer Sterritt

Spencer Sterritt: former Editor-In-Chief for We Eat Films, future President of the Men With Beards Club, and hopefully candidate for ruler of the world.

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