Monday, May 27, 2013

The Beautiful Girls – Mad Men Episode Summary 4.9

Miss Blankenship dead on her deskSynopsis: Abe Drexler, the writer whom Peggy Olson met at a party some time ago, decides to court her.  However, the two seem to be from different worlds for Peggy has made use of her talent to help capitalists, a type of people Abe abhors.  Meanwhile, Don Draper has taken a new lover in the person of Faye Miller, and their relationship is quickly tested with the sudden entrance of his daughter who has run away from home.  The unexpected death of Miss Blankenship reminds Roger Sterling of his own mortality bringing him and Joan back together.

Episode Summary: Don Draper and Faye Miller have engaged in a sexual relationship, and have both spent lunch in bed together.  While the two were enjoying their tryst, Peggy Olson worked through lunch on both the Fillmore and Secor Laxative campaigns hoping that Don would sign off on her work the moment he got back to lunch, but instead gets told to come back an hour later for he is about to take a nap.Continue reading...

Peggy goes to P.J. Clarke’s for some drinks with Joyce, and confides her need to hire more copywriters.  However, she worries that the male candidates interviewing for the job would turn out to be better copywriters than her.  Abe Drexler’s arrival interrupts their conversation.  The man has taken a liking to Peggy, and Joyce was more than willing to give them some time alone.  Abe speaks of the impending fall of society in America similar to what has happened to Greece; Peggy is left mum unable to provide an opinion.  Trying to find a common ground, she tries to steer the subject away, but again gets reeled into a conversation about the evils of corporate America with her mention of Fillmore Auto Parts.  Peggy learns that the family owned company’s Southern stores have refused to hire Negroes, a claim she refuses to believe.  She begins to explain that part of her job is to help companies get out of public relations nightmares such as the issue Abe raised.  To hear that this is what Peggy does shocks the civil rights activist, and even more alarming to him is her wish to have worked on Goldwater’s campaign.  Peggy argues that Negroes are not the only victims of inequality for she herself had experience discrimination, but she fought her way through and she believes that they can too.  Strangely enough, Abe does not recognize discrimination against women as part of civil rights and makes a mockery of it that Peggy takes offence.  Abe realizes that he had unconsciously insulted the woman he was trying to impress.  He apologizes, but his realization and apology came in too late.

Joan Harris has been in an inauspicious mood having found that her husband is going to Vietnam.  Roger Sterling learns of this, and he takes it upon himself to provide her a night of pampering by sending two masseuses from Madam Inga’s.  Although the masseuse swore not to divulge the identity of the person who paid for their services, Joan knew very well who it was.  She expresses her gratitude to Roger the very next morning, but Roger being the man he is wants something more.  Joan is once again left disgusted with the man she once loved.  Meanwhile, Peggy gets a surprise visit from Abe at the office.  The man still mortified of his behavior the previous evening has gone and written her an essay to help explain what he was trying to convey.  Abe stays at the office to wait for Peggy’s opinion believing that what he had written will mend their fences.  An even more upset Peggy returns reprimanding Abe for his essay, one that could cost Peggy her job if published.  Her reaction is not one that Abe had envisioned for his honest intention was to flatter the young woman, but he once again ended up insulting her.  Abe leaves the office disappointed to have learned that an earnest young woman such as Peggy does not share his ideals.

Dr. Miller presents her findings to Fillmore Auto Parts telling them that the demographic they must target are men who would spend a good amount of money for the satisfaction of being useful with their hands.  The older family member rejects the proposed target audience, while the younger one agrees to it.  Don suggests that the three members of the family put it through a vote, but quickly learns that the third member is incapable of forming his own opinion.  Their meeting is interrupted by an urgent message from Megan informing him that his daughter, Sally Draper, is at the office.  The young girl has taken a train to the city to see him.  Luckily, an elderly woman took notice, and brought her to his office.  Don gives Betty a call to inform her that a complete stranger had brought their daughter to his office after the young girl stowed away on a train.  Surprisingly, Betty refuses to fetch Sally, and decides to let her stay with her father that night.

Don returns to the meeting, and leaves Sally in the care of Miss Blankenship, but the woman had fallen asleep at her desk or so thought Peggy.  A soft shove at the old woman brought out the truth, Miss Blankenship has died.  Megan, once again, interrupts the Fillmore Auto Parts meeting much to Don’s chagrin unaware of what has caused the urgency.  Soon Don learns and sees for himself that his secretary had died on her desk.  Joan takes charge as they discreetly wheel out the corpse of Miss Blankenship.  Luckily, the clients have their backs turned away from the scene making them oblivious to the commotion right outside of the conference room.  Don returns to the meeting completely distracted with the scene outside.  Fortunately, the Fillmore brothers have come to a unanimous decision to go with the “For the mechanic in every man” slogan for it embodies the company’s reputation that Fillmore Auto Parts is a place for professional mechanics, but a shop for men of all types.  Ken Cosgrove and Dr. Miller watch in horror as an afghan covered Miss Blankenship is wheeled out of her desk, but becomes quite relieved when the corpse is taken out of view just as the eldest of the Fillmore brothers finishes signing off on their new strategy.

With Secor Laxative arriving for a meeting and Don’s secretary gone for good, he asks Faye to bring Sally to his apartment and watch her until he comes home.  Moreover, he orders Megan to inform Bert Cooper and Roger Sterling of the news more importantly to allow them to keep their next client from arriving at the office.  The coroners arrive, and Miss Blankenship now lying on a gurney is finally wheeled out of the agency to be taken to Frank E. Campbell as per Bert’s insistence.  The death of Miss Blankenship has affected the senior partners including Roger who has had two heart attacks at the office.  Joan takes pity on Roger, and finally agrees to have dinner with him.  Roger knowing how worried Joan is about her husband going to Vietnam tells her that he is a person she can confide in, and surprisingly learns that Greg did not even consult Joan in his decision to join the army.  As per Roger’s suggestion, the two goes out for a walk, but the neighborhood has changed so much so that a man pulls out gun at them demanding money and jewelry.  Roger keeps his eyes down and instructs Joan to do the same.  He and Joan quietly and willingly hand the man their possessions, and the man walks away soon after.  The shock of being held at gunpoint gets to Joan making her weak on the knees, and gets the urge to scream but could not.  Roger brings her to a stoop and tells her to calm down.  Caught in the heat of the moment, Joan gives Roger a kiss that he passionately returns.  The two ends up in a coitus right there and there.

Don’s long and eventful workday is finally over, and he comes home to her daughter whom he did not punish despite her running away from home.  Having spent time with Faye, Sally becomes curious of the woman’s relationship with her father, but learns that the woman is not her father’s girlfriend.  Sally tells her father that she would want to live with him, but Don sadly informs her that she cannot.  The next morning, Don hears clattering in the kitchen and finds that his daughter has made breakfast, a French toast made of rum for she has mistaken his bottle of rum for Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup; Don loved the dish.  Sally asks her father if they could spend the day together, and Don agrees to spend half a day with her at either the Central Park Zoo or the Museum of Natural History.

At Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, Bert has difficulty writing Ida Blankenship’s obituary.  Roger calls Joan in to help, and the woman gets the job done in no time.  Moreover, she seemed to have inspired Bert out of his mental block.  With Miss Blankenship’s obituary done, and Bert having left Roger and Joan alone, the two gets a moment together to talk about the previous night.  Roger is surprised to hear that Joan does not regret that it happened, but she insists that they must put their feelings aside for both of them are married.

Don arrives at the office with her daughter, and both are in a good mood.  He leaves her daughter to her new secretary, their former receptionist, Megan.  Knowing the fate of Don’s former secretaries, Stan and Ken wonder how long the young woman will last.  Don meets with his staff, and learns from Ken that Fillmore Auto Parts would like a catchy jingle to go with their ad, and so they begin to run through a list of singers for their jingle.  It seems that Abe has gotten through to Peggy that she suggests Harry Belafonte for the job thinking that having the African American sing their jingle might help alleviate discrimination issues surrounding the company.  Moreover, she begins to question why their agency does business with a company who discriminates against colored people.  Don steps in, and reminds her that their job is to make men like Fillmore Auto, and not to make Fillmore Auto like Negroes.  Stan makes a joke of having Dean Martin sing the jingle given his association with Sammy Davis, Jr., and Peggy once again finds herself being mocked.

Don tells her daughter to get ready for her mother is arriving in a few minutes to fetch her, but Sally expresses her desire to stay, which turns into a tantrum when Don ignores her demands.  Having heard the young girl screaming, Faye checks in with Don, and finds herself reeled in Don’s family problems for the man begs her to placate his stubborn daughter.  Although brilliant at getting into the minds of consumers, Dr. Faye fails to handle the child leaving Don to force her daughter out of the office.  Sally tries to run away, but trips and falls hard on the floor.  Megan runs to the poor child to help her, and is surprised when the troubled young girl has her in a tight embrace.  Having witnessed the poor girl’s attempt at an escape, the concerned women of the agency follow father and daughter out in reception where Betty is waiting.  Seeing Sally’s grief, Megan is brought close to tears.  Meanwhile, Faye feeling the rejection becomes upset with Don for putting her in the spot.  Don then finds himself appeasing his lover who turned out to be awkward with children.

Joyce drops by Peggy’s office to invite her out for drinks, and Peggy soon learns that the young woman had helped Abe court her.  Although Joyce finds that men want their women to share the same interests as they do, she confesses that she finds Abe to be a very interesting person, one she thought was good enough to introduce to Peggy.  Peggy passes off drinks with Joyce, and finds herself unsure of her feelings towards Abe.

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