Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Gold Violin – Mad Men Episode Summary 2.7

The Gold Violin Mad Men Episode SummarySynopsis: Don Draper is replacing his old car with a flashy, expensive Cadillac. A flashy new car might just be in order to match his joining the big leagues after the success of the pitch with Martinson’s Coffee. Meanwhile, word that Bertram Cooper had purchased a ten thousand dollar painting, and had been calling employees to ask for their opinion about it has been flying around Sterling Cooper. Only Harry Crane knows nothing about this, and is surprised to learn from his colleagues that what he thought to be a big meeting to discuss expansion of his department might turn out to be just a conversation about the painting. Jane Siegel finds it hard to understand why the mad men of Sterling Cooper are making a big deal out of being called to admire the painting such that she along with some of the creative team marches up to Cooper’s office to view it. Inspired by their adventure, Ken Cosgrove finds the urge to write about it stirring conversation about his writing talent that impressed no one else but Salvatore Romano. It was then that he decides to ask his opinion about his new story, “The Gold Violin”.

Episode Summary: Don Draper is looking to replace his old car with a 1962 Coupe de Ville. He is upgrading his old Dodge that he wrecked with a Cadillac. Buying a new car reminded him of his past. Before he was a big shot ad man, Don Draper was a car salesman, and it was then that someone learned that he is not who he says he is. In his musings, he suddenly changes his mind, and decides not to purchase the flashy Cadillac.  Continue reading...

As soon as he arrives at the office, he meets with Roger Sterling and Duck Phillips to discuss Martinson Coffee. Their competitor, Grey, who re-branded the coffee company to Martinson’s is under review, and Sterling Cooper is out to steal their client. Grey has employed young professionals to work on their print and TV ads. Sterling Cooper had done the same. Don Draper calls in the two Mr. Smiths. The young men are ecstatic about a sixty-page rant that he attests discusses what their generation wants. His conclusion is that the young generation does not want to be told what to do for they only want to be themselves. Don Draper finds it idealistic.

Meanwhile, his usual creative team is out to find a way to sell the newly developed disposable diapers from Pampers. The product is first of its kind. Paul Kinsey explains that a registered nurse would act as their sales persons with her hauling a crate of these disposable diapers to maternity wards in an attempt to convince families of its good qualities. All agree that it is an ingenious product. The only problem is that is expensive.

Harry Crane arrives thrilled with news that Bertram Cooper wants to see him in his office. Paul Kinsey prone to sour grape rains on his parade by pointing the fact that the only reason the senior partner had called Harry was to ask his opinion about the new painting he bought. Harry is not convinced, and insists that their meeting would be to discuss the expansion of the television department. Everybody knows that this is an unlikely reason, and learning that another employee had been called up to look at the painting Harry is now convinced that it is what they say it is. Still he finds this to be a great deal. Jane Siegel could not see why the men could not just walk up to Cooper’s office to look at the painting given that he has gone home. She attests that his secretary, Miss Blankenship, would not mind. Jane makes her way up to Bertram Cooper’s office, and the men follow her.

They arrive at the office, and finds that Miss Blankenship has left. Jane continues on to the door, and finds that it is unlocked. The mad men become nervous, but she finds nothing wrong with them walking inside Cooper’s office. Paul Kinsey seeing what a bad idea this is, leaves. Ken Cosgrove though afraid follows Jane inside the office, but not without all of them removing their shoes. Bertram Cooper obsessed with the ways of the Japanese would not have anyone walk in his office with their shoes on. Inside they go, only to find a Rothko. The ten thousand dollar painting that everybody has been talking about is nothing but smudgy squares as Jane had put it. Having seen the abstract painting, Harry does not know what to think of it. He worries that liking it might make him a fool if Cooper turns out to hate it, and disliking it might offend the old man if he indeed finds the painting interesting. Salvatore believes that the Rothko must mean something, but Ken Cosgrove thinks that it is one of those works of art that is only meant to stir up some emotion. Salvatore Romano is impressed with the young man’s opinion. Ken finds their escapade quite an adventure, and thinks of writing a short story about it. He tries his best to impress Jane, but only ends up impressing Salvatore. Learning that Salvatore has some good opinions about his short story, Ken Cosgrove though slightly embarrassed comes to him to get his opinion on his latest work. Flattered, Salvatore invites him to have dinner with him and his wife.

Don Draper meets with Joe Martinson, the owner of Martinson’s Coffee for which they say the phrase cup of Joe originated. His mission is to target the young generation to buy his product. Don’s strategy is to get the opinion of the youth, and so he calls on one of the Mr. Smith’s to pitch their new idea. Smith explains that his generation does not want to be told what to do or what to want for they only desire to experience things. Their pitch included a jingle set to a bossa nova tune, but they attest that it is more than a jingle. Smith explains that it is a song, a mood, and a feeling. Joe Martinson though looks confused appears to be interested.

The big meeting with Cooper arrives, and it is indeed as Harry first thought of it, a discussion of the television department. Mr. Crane could not help but look at the Rothko painting, and he starts to make conversation around it setting himself up for failure. However, Harry ends up asking Cooper about his opinion about the painting, which surprises the old man. He, however, tells him that it is none of his business. Afraid that the insightful senior partner would eventually learn that he truly has no opinion about the painting, Harry bravely confesses that he knows nothing about art. Bertram Cooper acknowledges his honesty, and tells him that he should stick with what his talent, which is numbers. He also lets him in a little secret. Bertram Cooper only bought the painting as an investment. He predicts that its value will double in the near future.

Finally, Duck Phillips did something right. He just got word that Martinson Coffee is sending them a check to work on their new ad. His celebratory meeting with Don is cut short with a request from Bertram Cooper. Don Draper once again gets all the credit even though he insists that he had help. His work as an ad executive caught the attention of some powerful people, and as Cooper explains it, Don Draper has been invited to join them.

Joan Holloway gets word of the stunt Jane Siegel did. Jane makes up a lie insisting that the mad men had forced her to break into Cooper’s office. Joan knows the men at Sterling Cooper all too well to know that the pretty, young secretary of Don Draper actually has power over them. Jane Siegel disrespects Joan Holloway telling her that she does not need a mother. Furious, Joan fires the twenty-year old secretary. In tears, Jane drops by Roger Sterling’s office to say goodbye. Learning of her fate, Roger attests of reinstating her.

Betty Draper receives a call from Jimmy Barrett to invite her to celebrate his show for being picked up by ABC. Betty is flattered though the call must have only been meant to have her convince Don to come to the party. Don arrives with his new purchase. Betty is quite impressed, and could not wait to show off their new car. She also takes the opportunity to convince her husband to attend Jimmy Barrett’s party. The weekend arrives, and the Drapers go out on a picnic with their new car. Don who had just purchased the car is very particular with keeping it clean, but has no qualms about littering the park.

Meanwhile, Ken Cosgrove arrives at the Romano’s residence for dinner. Salvatore is thrilled. Ken goes right down to business. He wants to know what Salvatore thought about the story he wrote, “The Gold Violin”. Just as expected, Salvatore only has good things to say about the story, and his wife attests that her husband could not stop talking about it. Salvatore could not take his eyes off of Ken Cosgrove even with his wife beside him. In fact, Kitty pretty much played the third-wheel. Salvatore was all too interested in learning more about Ken that he rudely cut off every conversation piece his wife brings up. Kitty notices this, but does not realize why he does it. She only thinks that her little knowledge about advertising brought about his rude behavior. The truth is that her husband is smitten with Ken such that he subconsciously shows how much he desires to have a conversation with the two of them alone. Not realizing how rudely he behaved until his wife had pointed it out, Salvatore starts to become guilty though he could not help but keep the lighter that Ken Cosgrove had left.

It is Monday, and it is back to work. Jane Siegel had lost her spunk knowing that she had already been fired, and should not be there if not for the kindness of Roger Sterling. Joan Holloway walks over to her desk shocked to find Jane back at her desk. Jane explains that she had a conversation with Roger Sterling who had explained to her that her termination stems from Joan’s hasty nature. Hearing that Roger had reinstated Don’s secretary, Joan could do nothing.

Jimmy Barrett’s plan worked. Don and Betty Draper arrive at the party swarming with celebrities, and big shots from the media industry. Not too soon, Andrew Colhold of ABC arrives, but before Betty could even make conversation with him Bobbie Barrett comes over to talk business. Out of place, Betty leaves with an excuse of getting them their drinks. Jimmy Barrett finds her by herself. She finds his arrival a pleasant welcome, but pleasant does not go well with Jimmy Barrett. The two outcasts sit at the couch watching their spouses mingle with executives. Jimmy takes the opportunity to insinuate that his wife, and Betty’s husband are having an affair. Betty is caught off-guard ending up insulting the comedian, but the damage has been done. Later, Jimmy goes after Don Draper letting him in of his knowledge of his affair with his wife. It was a long silent drive back to Ossining broken only by Betty Draper’s vomiting.

Watch the Mad Men Episode The Gold Violin
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