Sunday, August 15, 2010

Indian Summer – Mad Men Episode Summary 1.11

Indian Summer Mad Men Episode SummarySynopsis: Peggy Olson is tasked with writing copy for a device that claims to help women lose weight. Meanwhile, Bertram Cooper pulls Roger Sterling out of his sick leave to rebuild confidence with their client Lucky Strike who has become overly concerned about Roger’s absence.

Episode Summary: Adam Whitman in his best clothes goes over to the front desk of his motel to send a package to his brother Donald Draper. He lays all the cash that Don had given him, writes a note, and hangs himself.  Continue reading...

Sterling Cooper gets a new client from a competitor who was just returning them a favor. The client is an inventor, and the product is a weight loss device called the Passive Exercise Regime. In order to test effectiveness, some of the mad men at Sterling Cooper had their wives use it, but none of the women had seen any change in their weight. Propitiously, Peggy Olson walks in the office to hand Don a glass of water causing Fred Rumsen to come-up with the idea of getting her help with the account. Fred finds Peggy to be the perfect person for the job not only because of her recent weight gain, but also because of the fantastic job she did for the Belle Jolie account. Peggy is more than happy to be involved with a new project. She wastes no time to test the weight loss belt, and learns that the product provides more than the promise of losing weight.

Betty Draper sits on the bed waiting for her husband to come home not knowing that Don is already in someone else’s bed. Don spends the night with Rachel Menken who begins to worry that their affair is nothing but a fantasy. Don assures her that this is where he wants to be, but he has yet to figure out what to do. Rachel Menken herself is unsure about her relationship with Don. She tells her sister that he is married, but leaves the part about their affair telling her only that she is falling for him. Her conversation with her sister only confused her more given her disapproval of Rachel getting involved with a married man. Her sister believes that no good could come out of having an affair with a married man.

First thing in the morning, Peggy Olson hands her report to Don Draper about the weight loss belt hesitant to tell him out loud her assessment of the product. However, upon her boss’ urging, Peggy tries her best to convey her opinion to Don in a less vulgar manner. In her opinion, the weight loss device provides a sensation that she believes some women would welcome. Betty Draper is one of these women. Against her better judgment, she lets an air conditioner salesman enter their house, and even leads him up to the bedroom. Luckily, halfway on the staircase she realizes the potential danger that she is putting herself into, and politely but firmly requests the salesman to leave. Later that night, Don becomes upset upon learning that his wife had let a stranger inside their house. Their argument puts an end to any chance of the couple spending the night with each other.

Bert Cooper enters Don Draper’s office with some news. With Roger Sterling on a sick leave as a result of his heart attack, Lucky Strike, Lee Garner, Sr. in particular is threatening to pull their account from their agency afraid that Roger is no longer involved with their account. In order to dispel any ideas, Cooper invited Lucky Strike to the office to prove that Roger is still involved. He, however, tells Don Draper to start building trust and confidence with their client.

Morning came, and as Bert Cooper had promised Roger Sterling with his wife beside him arrives at the office for the Lucky Strike meeting. The whole Sterling Cooper staff welcome his arrival with applause, and some whispering about Roger Sterling’s obvious deterioration. Don Draper and Bert Cooper calls on the help of Joan Holloway to mask Roger’s sickly skin tone. Joan who has been worried sick about her lover is more than happy to help. She gives him a passionate kiss before she starts her work. Roger Sterling who missed his lover as well tells her how grateful he is to have been his lover, and that he does not regret having an affair with her nor is he afraid to let anyone know.

Lucky Strike arrives at Sterling Cooper, and as promised Roger Sterling joins their meeting. He makes a show of his recovery taking interest at the fatty pastrami that was served. In addition to confirming Roger’s presence at the agency, Lucky Strike also brings about their concern on the lawsuit brought against the tobacco industry, and the impending requirement of putting warning labels on cigarettes that the government wants to impose. Don Draper assures them that no immediate action needs to be done regarding that issue, while Roger Sterling tries to mask his deteriorating health by smoking one of their cigarettes. Just as Roger Sterling makes a toast with pastrami on hand, he yet again suffers another heart attack, and this time in front of their already worried client. Bert Cooper’s lie backfires, and in an attempt to salvage the account he officially tells Lee Garner, Sr. that Don Draper is in control of their account. Lee knows this, but he worries that the board of directors of Lucky Strike will not be as accepting with the change especially seeing that even Sterling Cooper does not present Don Draper as the man in-charge.

With the recent fiasco, the junior mad men begin to worry about job security some more than others. Harry Crane is not too worried about it. He believes that Sterling Cooper will make Don Draper partner knowing that he brought half of the accounts to the agency. This worries Pete Campbell given his bad relationship with Don, and his refusal to recognize the brilliance of the creative director.

Peggy Olson goes on a date with a young man her mother forced her to see. The decent young man who drives a truck on a route he bought with his own money acts very much like a gentleman, while Peggy Olson acts like a jerk. Gone is the sweet, simple girl. Peggy has changed. She starts ordering a drink that Joan Holloway would order, and even pretends to be a smoker. Annoyed at his date, the young man puts Peggy in her place telling her that she might work in Manhattan, and may act like a Manhattanite, but she is far from being one. Insulted, Peggy Olson leaves.

At the Draper’s house, Betty Draper sits in front of the television with her husband. She turns off the TV, and tries to lure him to their bedroom. Don Draper makes an excuse, and calls her psychiatrist instead. Don feels that her therapy is not working, and that it had made his wife even unhappier. Don is worried that her sessions with the doctor had made her already weak character weaker, making it more difficult for him to leave her. His call to the psychiatrist did nothing for the doctor did not provide a solution other than Betty attending more sessions with him.

The mad men in-charge of the weight loss belt account call Peggy for a presentation of her report. She presents the product that she renamed as The Rejuvenator as a device that will make women feel good about themselves, touching only slightly its ability to help women lose weight. Given the vagueness of Peggy’s presentation with regard to the product’s use, the men start to ask questions about it. Due to the vulgarity of an honest answer, Peggy just stands silent leaving Don to step-in. He describes the product as a device that provides women the pleasure of a man without a man. After a quick laugh at it, Don Draper goes back to business, and provides Peggy some constructive criticism, but their discussion was interrupted by Ken Cosgrove’s realization that Fred Rumsen’s wife loved the product causing Don to stop an altercation between the two men. Don did, however, still manage to compliment Peggy’s work, and his thoughts about her presentation is shared by all the men in the room.

Just as Don Draper prevented an altercation between Ken and Fred as brought about by the insinuation that the latter has not fulfilled his job as a husband, Betty Draper has resorted to fantasies, and a vibrating washing machine to satisfy her need. Betty imagines herself with the young air conditioner salesman as she presses herself against the vibrating washing machine. The Indian summer only got hotter for Betty Draper who after her fantasy had to cool off in front of an electric fan.

Realizing her good work as a copywriter, Peggy Olson steps inside Don Draper’s office to demand her own desk. Don welcomes discussion of a raise, but requires that the young woman not be timid about her demands. Bert Cooper interrupts their discussion. He pulls Don Draper to Roger Sterling’s office to offer him partnership with the company in order to restore faith with their clients. Don accepts the offer with only one demand – he will continue to work without a contract. As soon as Bert Cooper leaves, Pete Campbell wastes no time to hear the news firsthand, and also to start sowing his seeds. As expected, Don is in a very good mood. He gives Peggy the raise she asked for, a reliever for when she has to work on an account, and even gives her permission to leave the office early that day. After work, ambitious Pete Campbell had just sat on Don Draper’s chair when a package arrives. Pete curious as to the contents of the package for Don that has been labeled personal decides to bring it home with him.

Don Draper arrives home early to tell his wife the news of him making partner. Just as he is already in the mood, Betty is no longer interested. Peggy Olson, on the other hand, resorts to the vibrating weight loss belt.

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