Mad Men 2.1: "For Those Who Think Young"

I thought the season 2 opener was kind of bland. Not bad, but not too exciting. I’m guessing their setting things up for some good drama later on. Don’s wife is obviously going to do some fooling around. :slight_smile:

Anyone else have some thoughts about last night’s episode?

I thought it was good. Liked all the references to the up and coming youth culture. Plots and character development have always moved slowly on this show so I didn’t expect any revelations. I’ve heard we won’t find out what happened to Peggy’s baby until later in the season.

The dynamic between Betty and Don has changed a lot. It looks as if he’s at least trying to remain faithful, and she’s asserting herself a lot more. I predict she will be one of the more fascinating and evolving characters this season.

Loved how Joan put the copier in Peggy’s already cramped office…revenge for the way Peggy treated Don’s secretary. Joan is awesome.

I enjoyed the scene where everyone was watching Jackie Kennedy’s tour of the White House. Does anybody know if it actually aired on Valentine’s Day 1962?

Also, what was that book Don was reading? I don’t think I’ve ever heard of it. I wonder who he sent it to? Midge? Rachel?

If I were Matthew Weiner, I’d be pretty tired of everyone comparing MM to the Sopranos, so I’d do everything to be sure the Don & Betty subplot have no echoes of Tony & Carmela.

And I think he’s pulling it off: instead of another show where the big question is “how to have a normal family life while dealing in dishonesty all day long,” Don isn’t a smarmy, phony con-man. The Kodak carousel speech and the Mohawk Airlines art board showed that he really believes in what he’s doing, and respects the public enough to want to actually connect with them, not just hoodwink them.

I’d be more than disappointed if Weiner left Betty & Don’s troubles off at the premise that in 1962, because of social conventions, husbands and wives couldn’t also be friends. They’re not, but for their own reasons and push will come to shove on that point.
(and, if anyone wondered, that was “Song of India” by the 19th C. Russian composer Rimsky-Korakov.)

That was a book of poetry by Frank O’Hara. I don’t know much about him other than that he was part of the NYC art crowd, including some of the abstract expressionism painters. I was thinking he sent it to the pot-smoking GF, whichever that one was. I have a hard time remembering anyone’s name other than Don’s.

I wondered. It was very familiar, but the only movie I’ve seen that used it is Brazil, which makes it appropriate for this episode if only for that huge Xerox machine in Peggy’s office.

I like what you say about Don being responsible about advertising and its impact on consumers. But it was puzzling too. Wasn’t Don the one who commented favorably on short skirts in ads?

She also corrected Lois when she used Peggy’s given name instead of calling her “Miss Olsen”. Joan’s making damned sure that every secretary knows that Peggy’s “one of them, not one of us” and making they treat her “like one of guys”. As for the baby Peggy put it up for adoption and made up some story to cover up for being in hospital. Didn’t hospitals keep appendectomy patients admitted for weeks of recovery back then? I don’t think anybody really believes she had Don’s baby (although they probally do think she’s slept with him). Pete sure doesn’t have the slightest clue. Salvatore appears to have a beard now. :wink:

It hasn’t been revealed what Peggy’s done with the baby. It’s possible she put it up for adoption, but it’s also possible that a family member is raising it.

Clearly, the baby was taken by The Others.

Weiner is so anal about details, I’m going to say ‘yes’ without even Googling.

The opener was a bit quiet, but I’ve heard murmurs and believe it’s just the calm before the storm.

Did anyone else find the scene with the mechanic weird. Going from first “are you really offering to sleep with him for $6? You’re a $6 whore now? Have you been doing this for the past year?” to “You don’t realize you’re offering to sleep with him for $6. You clueless moron. Run. Run now. Before you realize it in the worst way possible.” I was not expecting that scene to end as happily as it did.

It’d be worth just over $40 today, but I think Betty really didn’t have any idea how badly things could’ve gone. Maybe her shrink was right when he told Don she has the emotions of a child. Was anyone else thinking it would’ve been funnier (yet entirely believable) if Don had been naked the whole time in Dr’s office? :wink:

And Paul has a literal beard.

Is Pete Campbell denser than a neutron star? Everyone around him is speculating that Don knocked Peggy up, and he’s still insisting she went to a fat farm, without putting 2 and 2 together. I wonder how/if the truth of that situation will come out and I can’t wait to see it. Perhaps it will be somehow related to Pete’s wife’s inability to conceive.

Christina Hendricks, who plays Joan, is just awe-inspiring. I watched the Making Of extra on disk 3 of S1, and Matt Weiner said that he originially wanted Joan to be a stick-thin, snappy-talking Katharine Hepburn type, an ally to Peggy in the office. It wasn’t until Hendricks auditioned that he realized, “Joan is NOT Peggy’s friend!” Joan is no one’s friend. I love that she’s a bigger built woman but is the height of sexiness.

I think it’s interesting that Don is reacting to his newly monogamous marriage by not being able to get it up.

The scene with Betty and the mechanic left me confused. Maybe I missed or misinterpreted some dialogue, but I thought he accepted her offer to take it out in trade.

On another note, it didn’t hit me till later that Joan showed Peggy the ropes in the first episode of S1, and here in S2 Peggy’s doing the same with Don’s secretary. She didn’t do it as well as Joan did, but then she was coming at it from a different angle.

I like that Peggy and Don are both sorta protective of each other. I wonder what secrets they’ve shared in the last year.

This made me wonder-- does Don know that Peggy had a baby? Would she have had to tell him to get the time off and still keep the promotion? I can totally see him keeping this secret and not even asking who the father is. After all, who would understand that kind of secret better than he?

We can look forward to finding out what happened between that eventful Thanksgiving & this season’s opener. As that story unfolds, we’ll also be moving forward in time.

For every question answered–a new mystery? With lovely clothes.

I prepared for this season by catching every episode On Demand. Bring it on!

Alternatively Don, having never known his mother, could react to Peggy simply giving up her baby with great rage. How did adoption work in 1960? I don’t hospital staff would’ve been too shocked at an unmarried girl wanting to put her baby up for adoption and keeping the whole thing a secret.

I don’t think so. Don understands that ties of DNA do not make you love someone or make you family. He’d be a hypocrite if he raged at her for walking away from a family situation that was getting in the way of her happiness. After all, he did it with great success, and his boss didn’t judge him. I think he’d do the same for Peggy.

She took a bunch of months off after the baby was born, came back, and still kept her job and promotion. That’s what made me wonder if she had told Don.

Wish I would’ve rewatched the last few episodes of season 1 before watching this. I thought Pete knew he knocked Peggy up, which just sent shivers up my spine when he asked her if she ever wanted to have kids (my wife corrected me.) That guy is the height of creepy.

I love the show, but I’m disappointed that some of the plot threads seem to fall by the wayside. It’s not that I don’t think they’ll be resolved, a la Lost, but that I won’t remember the details when they resurface. Like, what’s with Don’s family and stolen identity, etc? That stuff is already a blurry memory to me.

I have to agree that this part of the story is problematic. How did he avoid the real Don Draper’s family upon his return from Korea? Have they never tried to contact him? Didn’t he have to know personal information to pass as Draper with the Army? I hope it is explained at some point… unless it’s the sort of thing that you have to accept as the premise for an otherwise great story. If so, I’ll be disappointed but it won’t ruin the show for me.