Spoiler Alert: Do not read if you haven’t seen Mad Men Season 7, Ep. 9 – “New Business.”
“You think you’re gonna begin your life over and do it right, but what if you never get past the beginning again?” — Pete
After years of flirting with death, or at least the very depths of despair, Don finally took the next step and dated it. In this case, death was represented by Di, a depressed waitress who took her own twisted path to escape. How many times has Don toyed with the idea of leaving everything behind (again) and starting anew? How many times has he come dangerously close succumbing to his darkest thoughts and slipping into an all-consuming depression? Now, at a time when he seems back in top form, he sought out the company of a woman who had done both those things.
Don has always been on a search to be understood. When he saw the grief in Di’s eyes he thought he had found someone who could understand his own grief. That’s why he thought he knew her, because he recognized his grief in her. But, she only had enough room for her own. Misery doesn’t actually want company.
Vengeance, on the other hand, requires reinforcements. I’m not sure where all this animosity for Don came from. When we last left the Draper marriage, both parties rationally ended it. Now, suddenly Megan feels that Don has ruined her life. And yes, forcing her to quit her popular soap opera and move out to California where she was subsequently abandoned hasn’t helped her career; but she also would never have had a career without Don.
But, all her pouting and finger pointing resulted in a million dollar payday, so perhaps the acting lessons paid off. At the very least it should be enough to keep her off the casting couch for the rest of her life and well away from Harry Crane. Of course, if Don had seen his empty apartment prior to the meeting, I imagine a few figures might have been knocked off.
Keeping with the theory we’ll be checking in on all of Draper’s women, we saw Sylvia this week. Not much has changed for her. Arnold is still kind of an ass and she still has to put up with it. As well as (likely) regular run-ins with Don in the elevator. It may not be heroin addiction or cancer, but its also not exactly ideal. Perhaps these check-ins will be about how much worse off these women are post Don.
Unless you were married to him. While Megan walked away a millionaire, Betty finally has the idyllic family life she always thought she wanted. She also found something that will likely fulfill her more than a husband and kids ever could: psychiatry. I can’t say I see her being a huge help to anyone else, but feeling valued and needed outside the home with likely do wonders for her as a wife, mother and overall person.
Finally, Stan and Peggy both enjoyed the attentions of an aggressive photographer, Pima Ryan. Besides offering up some quality laughs, Pima’s games also served to plant a seed of discontent in Stan’s relationship. Which means we are one step closer to my dream of Stan and Peggy will finally realizing they love each other becoming reality.
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