Sunday, May 13, 2012

Shut the Door. Have a Seat – Mad Men Episode Summary 3.13

Shut the Door Have a Seat Mad Men episode summarySynopsis: Don Draper learns from Conrad Hilton that McCann Erickson is buying Putnam, Powell & Lowe and Sterling Cooper along with it. He hatches a plan with Bert Cooper to buy back the agency, and learns the many obstacles of doing so. Meanwhile, on the home front, Betty has asked him for a divorce.

Episode Summaries: Don Draper meets with Conrad Hilton and receives some unexpected grave news about McCann Erickson buying Putnam, Powell & Lowe, which consequently makes Sterling Cooper a property of McCann Erickson. Because of this, Hilton has decided to pull his account from Sterling Cooper. This angers Don Draper whose career depended on the Hilton account that he now learns will no longer be his. All his hard work is for naught, but as Conrad Hilton puts it, it’s business. Continue reading...

Don Draper arrives at Sterling Cooper and is reminded of hard times during his childhood when the price of wheat they farmed are being sold for half of what it used to be due to a surplus of stock. His father has decided to hoard his wheat until its price goes up in winter risking losing his house for his inability to pay the mortgage. Moreover, he has decided to leave the cooperative, and go on his own.

Don Draper speaks with Bertram Cooper who knew nothing about the sale of P.P.L., but was not surprised about the news. Bound by a contract, Bert is indifferent about Sterling Cooper having yet another new master. He is yet again going to lose his business, but Bert could not care less for he is very well aware that he already lost his business when P.P.L. bought Sterling Cooper. Don suggests that Bert should buy Sterling Cooper back from P.P.L., but the old man is unwilling to do so knowing that he does not have a lot of years left in him to rebuild his fortune unlike young men like Don who have no qualms in taking risks for men like him could not imagine the consequences that come along with them. Bert is caught off-guard by Don Draper’s interest in the agency’s welfare, and learns that the man is sick and tired of being bounced around like a ping-pong ball, and desires to build something of his own instead of just being a pawn who does his master’s bidding. Having gone this road when he was a young man, Bert understands what Don is going through, but believes that the man does not have a stomach for the realities of running his own company. Don challenges Bert to see what he is really capable of doing.

Bert and Don inform Roger Sterling of the startling news Don received from Conrad Hilton, and their plan to buy the company back from P.P.L. unwilling to let the agency be part of McCann Erickson. Roger could sense the reason why the two has come to him, and it’s because they need him for his money. Envious of Don’s success, Roger sees this as an opportunity to see Don beg, but it is Bert who loses his temper criticizing Roger for throwing away his birthright for a trollop. Roger is unwilling to spend his fortune for Don whom he knew was the proponent of this plan. Don puts aside his ego, recognizes his weaknesses, and acknowledges Roger’s value as an account man. Moreover, Don has come to realize the value of his relationship with him. Roger is moved, but not quite for his fortune allows him to go on early retirement. Bert warns him about the consequences of retiring early, and how most men they knew who have done the same ended up dying at an early age. Roger finds Bert’s approach ridiculous, but the men’s point of them fighting back instead of doing nothing seem to have struck a chord.

Don Draper arrives home and gets another unexpected startling news. Betty is asking for a divorce. Don is in disbelief, and asks his wife to go see a doctor for he believes that she just hasn’t been her self lately given the blows of the past few weeks. However, Betty informs her husband what he failed to notice; she has had a tough year. Don disapproves of the divorce, unwilling to break up their family, but his wife informs him that it was not her who wrecked their family.

Roger, Don and Bert call Lane Pryce into a closed-door meeting informing him of their knowledge of the purchase of P.P.L., and is surprised to learn that the senior partners have become aware of this secret. Lane denies the news, but was soon forced to spill the beans. He informs them that only Sterling Cooper is being sold. Be that as it may, Bert Cooper notifies him of their plan to buy back the agency for the purchase price plus 12%. To their dismay, Lane divulges that the agency is now worth more than what they are willing to pay. With that, their plan is in shambles.

Henry Francis and Betty Draper meet with a divorce attorney and discover that the only grounds for divorce in the State of New York are absence of a spouse, incurable insanity, life imprisonment or adultery. Betty is fully aware of Don’s unfaithfulness, but has no proof of it. At any case, the attorney informs them that adultery could not be used if both parties are at fault to which Betty and Henry attest to have not carried on an affair. Although mortified for his presumption, the lawyer recommends having the divorce in Reno for the State of New York makes it difficult for married couples to get a divorce. In addition, Betty must think about the settlement to which Henry assures her she would not need for he will take care of her and her children. Henry wants the divorce carried out as soon as possible.

Lane calls Saint John to inform him of Don, Bert and Roger’s awareness of the sale, but were misinformed that P.P.L. is being sold as well. To his surprise, it was him who was mistaken. P.P.L. is in fact being sold as well. This troubles Lane who has been kept in the dark about the details of the sale, and is now wary of what his role will be at McCann.

Don Draper returns home, and finds Sally sleeping in grandpa Gene’s old room where he has been temporarily banished. While watching her sleep, he is reminded once again of his childhood when his father and mother had argued in front of him about money. With the bank hounding them, his father is forced to sell the wheat he has been hoarding for much less its value. Don, only a young boy, is to go with his father to Chicago to sell it. The drunken man prepares the horse, but drops the saddle. As he bends over to pick it up, thunder comes crashing startling the horse and accidentally kicks him in the face killing him instantly. Don finishes remembering the accident that unraveled in front of him, and decides to sleep beside his daughter.

Don calls in Bert, Roger and Lane in his office for another closed-door meeting. Don has not given up, and shares with him his idea to go directly to McCann, but Lane advises against it. Moreover, he informs them that he was mistaken. P.P.L. is, in fact, being sold to McCann. Don merely wants to know what the purchase price was so they can buy the agency back, but Lane warns them that he could fire them for involving him in the conspiracy. At this point, Don loses his temper and challenges Lane for his threat pointing out that his only contribution to the agency is terminating people. By some stroke of genius, Don is again struck with an idea, and a much better one than the previous ones he had. Don Draper asks Lane Pryce to fire them, in effect, severing their contracts. Moreover, he gives him good reason to do so. Once the sale is completed, Lane is most probably going to be terminated as well, and Bert offers him a partner role in their new agency. Lane negotiates much more than a partnership, and Don offers to put his name on the door. Lane agrees and sets the wheels in motion, informing them that for their plan to be a success they need accounts. Roger is confident that they can bring with them Lucky Strike, and a few others to take care of cash flow. Lane plans to send notice of their termination after close of business in London that they may not hear of it until Monday morning. They have the weekend to gather accounts, put together a skeleton staff to service them, and gather all the materials required for continuity of service. Anyone who will be involved in this conspiracy must be trustworthy for a leak would put their plans in jeopardy. On Friday, December 13, 1963, Lane Pryce fires Don Draper, Roger Sterling, and Bert Cooper.

Don Draper orders his secretary to send an office-wide memo that Sterling Cooper will be closed for the weekend for carpet cleaning, and no work can be done at the office. Don calls in Peggy Olson to his office, and informs her that Sterling Cooper is once again being sold, but he is starting his own agency and wants her to come in on Sunday to help collect whatever accounts they will end up taking. Peggy is slighted at being ordered instead of being asked for Don assumed that she would do anything he asks him to do. She informs him that she has had other offers that came with a sales pitch about opportunity, and that it is not her desire to build a career where her efforts are not recognized, but gets the blame when things fall apart. Don has misjudged Peggy, and has decided to talk to Kurt and Smitty instead.

Learning that Roger and Don are dropping by at his house, Pete Campbell becomes frantic at being guilty for calling in sick to interview with Ogilvy. Thinking that he has been caught, Pete is surprised and relieved at the same time to learn that the senior partner’s visit was to inform him that McCann bought P.P.L. He gains the confidence he needed when Don informs him that they are not firing him, but tells them that if they are to speak to him about embellishing his title then they should not waste their time for he has made other plans. Seeing right through him, Don placates the young man’s anger and goes right down to business, and tells him about their plan to open a new agency where Roger is to bring in American Tobacco, but are short of billings to cover the agency’s cash flow, and was hoping to get his help on filling the void. Pete is unwilling to bend over for them, and Don knows where he is coming from knowing full well how he was treated at the agency. They inform him that they have not spoken to Ken Cosgrove just yet, and that they have approached him for his accounts and his talents, but Pete wanted to hear it from Don Draper. Don acknowledges Pete for his foresight, and that it is him that their new agency needs to be one step ahead of the competition. He demands that they make him a partner, and requires that his name be on the lobby. Don laughs at the latter for they do not even have an office. He tells Pete that they are going to make him a partner if he could bring in his accounts by Sunday, and would keep the name and the title as a goal. Pete Campbell joins the new agency. Trudy could not be any more proud of Pete.

Don and Roger get themselves a drink, and Don informs him that he is getting a divorce, but it was him who was surprised at learning that Roger already knew. Moreover, Don is unaware that Betty has found another man. Roger’s daughter is friends with Henry Francis’ daughter, which is how he learned about it. He thought he knew all along, but obviously Don is in shock. He arrives home infuriated, and asks Betty about Henry Francis. Don manhandles Betty as he drags her out of the bed demanding to know who Henry is, insulted at learning that he is no longer good enough for her. He threatens her at not getting anything from him. Moreover, he will take the kids with him for they are better off with him. Betty is unfazed and tells him of her plan to go to Reno where he is to give his consent to end their marriage. Betty is no longer afraid of Don for she now knows his secrets. He grabs her hard and calls her a whore. The commotion disturbs baby Gene in his sleep. Betty throws Don out of their house.

Pete Campbell arrives at the office, and rides the elevator with the clueless Harry Crane who had just been offered a chance to be the new head of media at the new agency they are planning to start. In shock, Harry could not provide an answer, and seeks to speak to his wife to which Cooper clearly is not going to allow him to do for their plans are to be kept secret until Monday morning. He is to decide right then and there. Harry Crane joins Cooper in his new agency.

Don Draper is not in sight for there is trouble at home that he needs to attend to. Betty informs their children that Don is moving out of the house, but will come to visit. Bobby thinks that it is his fault that his father is moving out, but Don assures him that what their family is going through right now has nothing to do with them. Sally is upset with her father having been told long ago that he will always come home, and learns now that he will no longer be with them. Both children are upset and reluctant to lose their father, but Don and Betty have agreed to part ways.

Don drops by Peggy’s apartment to admit having taken her for granted, and for being hard on her. His mistake stems from him seeing her as the extension of himself, which she clearly is not. Don tells Peggy that she understands things that nobody does, which he finds very valuable. Don is moving on with or without her, but he would very much like her to help him. Moreover, even if she says no, he will spend the rest of his life trying to hire her.

The mad men at Sterling Cooper are racking their brains trying to figure out where the materials they need are stored when Roger decides to make a call. Soon after, Joan Holloway Harris arrives at the office ready with a plan. She’s been barely been back a minute when all things have started to make sense. Having learned from Joan what and where the things they need are, the men could now start packing. Don arrives with Peggy in tow. It has been a long day, but they got all they needed. Don and Roger stand at the entrance of their office, and stares at it in one last goodbye.

Monday morning, Allison enters Don’s office, and finds it ransacked. She yells at everyone that they have been robbed. Meanwhile, Lane arrives at his office with a call from Saint John waiting for him. Saint John fires Lane Pryce. The new agency sets up shop at The Pierre hotel, and gets their very first call. Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce is born. Meanwhile at Sterling Cooper, word gets out that Don is gone. Moreover, Pete has tried to poach John Deere over the weekend. Paul Kinsey enters Peggy’s office only to discover that she is gone too.

Don calls Betty to notify her that he still does not know where he will be staying, but he will be working out of The Pierre, and that he has conceded; he will no longer fight her. He hopes that she gets what she always wanted. Betty assures him that he will always be their children’s father.

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