Bullet Points – Mad Men 05:05

"Shhh. The men are acting like damn fools!"
Photo Credit: Ron Jaffe / AMC

Well, tonight was all about the men folk at SCDP. I mean it was sort of a male fantasy episode, wasn’t it? Business dealings, prostitutes, fisticuffs, illicitly stolen kisses, hints of voyeurism – friends this was a fun episode.

But this was all about masculinity issues, and (pardon the expression) a dick comparison contest. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s get our plaid blazers on, have the prostitutes and plumbing tools on standby, and get to it as we watch the car crashes going on.

  • For those that didn’t get the reference, Signal 30 is a very famous drivers’s ed film.
  • I’m going to have to do this by character, it’ll be easier. So let’s start with…
  • KEN – It’s amusing to see that Ken and his wife Cynthia actually have a functioning relationship (more so than most of the other relationships in this show) . The big thing with Kenny is that he has a life outside of SCDP; and that life means his wife and his writing. Was it a dick move for Pete to rat out Ken’s writing for Roger? Yes. Was Roger right in calling Ken on it? Surprisingly yes. As Ken has admitted, he’s been slacking off in handling his clients, so Roger’s chat was half right. That said though, it was cute to watch him get his revenge on Pete at the end.
  • While we’re on the subject of Ken, who was surprised that he and Peggy have an alliance? More of a suicide pact, really. I find it intriguing; after all, in all writing, you don’t bring out the gun in Act One unless you plan on using it in Act Three.
  • It’s interesting to note how much control Megan has in her marriage to Don. From sitting at his desk at work, to making him call Trudy to cancel, to making him wear that blazer (That Blazer!!), and to getting out of Don’s sudden desire to making a baby, she’s found a way to maintain some control in the marriage and work around most of Don’s neurosis.
  • Trudy proves to be a fantastic housewife and hostess (and proves to keep even Don Draper in line), which begs the question…
  • Why is Pete such a sour puss? Answer: He was brought up to be a king but has no real power in the way he was taught to have it. He can’t score with the high school girl (since “Handsome” Hanson swoops in). He can’t fix the faucet in his own home (Don does that). He isn’t comfortable in his own home (it’s Trudy’s domain). He is miserably unhappy. All of this time he’s tried to be Don Draper, and now that he has everything Don had in the beginning (the wife, the kid, the house in Connecticut, he isn’t happy with it. He wants the world to say that he is the king that he wants to be (which is why he gave into the prostitute once she said “You’re My King”).
  • Speaking of miserable men, Lane sure is having a hard time of it, which makes sense since he’s the one lone British man in a sea of Americans who marginalize him, and now he can’t find sympathy from his fellow expats.
  • “Chewing gum on his pubis!”
  • Admit it, you all cheered Lane on when he was punching Pete.
  • Not to brag but I called it when Lane kissed Joan. Thankfully she was able to extract herself from that uncomfortable moment.
  • This was a heavy guy-action episode, which I attribute to the co-writer of this episode – the legendary Frank Pierson (Dog Day Afternoon). And once again, attention must be paid to John Slatterly for handling this episode with a light touch.

One comment

  1. Pingback: Bullet Points – Mad Men 05:12 « Todd O'Dowd

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