Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Wheel – Mad Men Episode Summary 1.13

The Wheel Mad Men Episode SummarySynopsis: Betty Draper learns that her friend’s husband has been having an affair making her wonder about her own situation. Meanwhile, Duck Phillips orders the mad men of Sterling Cooper to bring new business to the company, the way he is about to with Kodak. Don Draper works on the ad for Kodak’s new product called The Wheel, while Peggy Olson starts to climb up the ladder having given the authority to choose the right girl for the weight loss ad. Pete Campbell is being pressured by his in-laws to start a family, and uses his measly salary as an excuse not to have child.

Episode Summary: Bert Cooper calls Don Draper to his office after receiving a call from Rachel Menken’s father, Abraham. The senior partner sensing a tone of worry from their client’s father knew that Rachel’s sudden decision to go on a three month leave had something to do with Don. Bertram though unaware and uninterested with the details of Don’s relationship with their client is worried that his personal preference is interfering with their business.  Continue reading...

Betty Draper gets a surprise visit from a troubled Francine Hanson. Her friend had just learned that her husband has been calling a woman in Manhattan late at night while she is asleep. In denial, Betty tries her best to make excuses for her friend’s husband, but the truth of him having an affair is far too glaring. Francine who is hosting a thanksgiving dinner at her house for her family is anxious on how she could put on a face having been made aware of her husband’s affair. Betty becomes troubled after learning that her friend had rushed to her side thinking that she would know what to do. Hearing this made Betty curious. She takes the unopened phone bill to see if her husband is doing just the same, but then decides to forego finding out.

Duck Phillips, the new head of accounts, wastes no time to make his tyranny known. He calls the mad men of Sterling Cooper to a meeting half informing, and half mocking their pitiful client list. He orders them to bring in big clients in any way possible, and as an incentive, he promises a hundred dollar bonus to the first man to set up a meeting with a decision maker. Don Draper who had recently been named partner fully supports Duck’s plan, emphasizing that bringing in business is the key to everyone’s success, account executives and writers alike.

Pete Campbell spends time with his wife, but when his wife excuses herself to get protection he stops her. The urging of his in-laws for the young couple to start a family seemed to have made him think more about wanting a child. Pete does want a child, but his worry of not earning enough money to provide for his child prevents him from committing to have one. A bit of reassurance from his wife seemed to have changed his mind.

Betty Draper sits at the kitchen waiting for her husband still upset of his disinterest of spending Thanksgiving with her family. Moreover, Francine’s husband’s affair continues to bother her. She confides to her husband as if trying to draw from him some guilt feelings, and maybe even a confession. However, Don Draper has mastered keeping secrets, and he successfully slithers away from the unwieldy conversation.

Peggy Olson had just started climbing up the ladder, and already her whirlwind success has gone to her head. Being made responsible for the copy of the weight loss account they now named Relax-a-Cizor, Peggy was given the authority to choose the right woman to do the radio ad. However, her inexperience had come to haunt her. Peggy had pushed to go with the young, beautiful, slim, single woman instead of the confident, middle-aged woman that Kenny found more appropriate for the ad. Almost immediately, she is made aware of her wrong decision. The young, beautiful, slim, single woman could not project the confident, married woman who had just lost weight that she was trying to portray. Peggy dismisses her choice like a rag that even Ken Cosgrove found disapproving.

Duck Phillips’ way of handling business seemed to have worked. Kodak whom he heard to be dissatisfied with the current campaign for their new slide projector they are calling The Wheel just gave them a chance to come-up with a new campaign for them. Don Draper wastes no time to work on The Wheel. He goes through old pictures, and remembers his brother Adam. He calls The Brighton Hotel where he knew his brother was staying only to find out that he had hung himself. Don Draper is in shock.

Betty Draper lies awake in bed wondering where her husband could be. Her curiosity drove her to open the phone bill to check who her husband has been calling. Following Francine’s actions, she calls the one number her husband constantly rings. Hearing a man answer the phone, Betty is relieved, but not until she learns that the man on the other line is her therapist, Dr. Arnold Wayne.

Don had fallen asleep in the office, and awakes to find Harry Crane at the office in his underwear. Harry’s wife had thrown him out of their house after learning that in the drunken anticipation for a new president, he had an affair with one of Sterling Cooper’s secretaries – Hildy. However, Don is not even surprised to see him at the office nor is he interested at hearing his story rather he calls him in to ask his thoughts about The Wheel.

The next day, Betty Draper goes to a bank, and sees the neighborhood kid Glen Bishop sitting inside his mother’s car. She comes up to him, and learns that the boy’s parents forbade him from talking to her. Betty, who had just learned that the one person she thought she trusted has actually been secretly divulging her innermost thoughts to her husband, strangely confides to the boy.

Pete Campbell managed to land an account with Clearasil, thanks to his father-in-law who is an executive at Vicks Chemical Company. Though he already got the bonus, and Bertram Cooper’s odd appreciation, he still goes over to Don Draper to seek his approval. Pete Campbell is not afraid to let it be known that he struggles to impress the brilliant creative director, and is happy to learn that Don is indeed impressed.

Betty Draper arrives at her therapist’s office pretending to know nothing of his indiscretion. However, knowing that her doctor has been talking to her husband about their sessions, Betty thought up a plan. She informs her doctor that she would be happy if Don is faithful to her. She makes it known to her therapist that she is very well aware of her husband’s affairs knowing that he will relay all that she said to Don. She goes on to the intimate details that happen in the bedroom again revealing her husband’s affairs, and tries to understand what would have drove him to have one. Betty supposes that she has not been satisfying her husband, but then again wonders if it is Don who has a problem.

Sterling Cooper got their day with the big shots at Kodak. The executives at Kodak are curious as to how the small advertising agency will showcase the new technology they are calling The Wheel. Don Draper hints at what they might be seeing at his presentation. He starts by saying that technology is a glittering lure, but that he believes that there are ways to engage the public beyond it. He tells them of his first job at a fur company where he worked with a veteran Greek copywriter called Teddy. The pro taught him that the most important idea in advertising is “new”, but that there is also nostalgia. Don using the Kodak projector shows them a slide presentation of his family pictures as he talks about nostalgia as the pain from an old wound. He says that it is a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. He sees the device as a time machine, allowing people to take them to a place where they ache to go again. Don Draper renames the product as the Carousel for it let’s you travel around and around, and back home again to a place where people know they are loved. Don once again conveyed a message so clear, and compelling so much so that it brought Harry Crane to tears.

Don Draper has done it again. The big shots at Kodak had immediately cancelled their meetings with other advertising agencies to give the account to Sterling Cooper. It was a cause for celebration not only for Don, but Pete as well. This after Duck received a call from his father-in-law to inform him that he will be signing the Clearasil ad campaign to them before the end of the year. As if to spite him, Don Draper assigns the Clearasil account to the rookie Peggy Olson. This angers Pete Campbell who fears that Don had made the decision purely to embarrass him. Ken Cosgrove uncharacteristically stands by the good work Peggy had put forth, and even compliments how she handled the Relax-a-Cizor account with an iron hand. Pete argues that Peggy Olson is nothing but a secretary for which Don responds with a quick promotion of Peggy to junior copywriter. Don Draper has spoken, and his decision is final and immediate. Pete Campbell’s misfortune is Peggy Olson’s gain.

Joan Holloway though clearly envious of Peggy’s success leads her to her new office, which she would have to share with another copywriter. Peggy suddenly feels pain in her stomach, and she rushes to see a doctor who immediately recognizes that she is about to give birth. Peggy Olson, in disbelief, denies the obvious fact. Refusing to believe that she is with child, Peggy makes her way to the door, but the pain had become unbearable. Peggy Olson gives birth, but refuses to even hold her child.

Don Draper’s presentation was so compelling that even he found a new perspective in life. He rushes home to join his wife and kids for Thanksgiving with Betty’s family. Unfortunately, he was too late. Betty and the kids had already left.

Watch the Mad Men Episode The Wheel
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7 Pennies for your thoughts:

AsIAmIsHow said...

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SorryIHadToSayThat said...


comprehensive episode guides said...

Glad you found this summary cool, SorryIHadToSayThat!

comprehensive episode guides said...

Unfortunately AsIAmIsHow, I don't watch Hannah Montana. Anyway, I still appreciate your comment.

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Xadrian Covarrubias said...

I did not get at the very end with Peter Campbell and the in laws. Could you elaborate on that scene please?