“It’s Pearl Harbor Day, have some respect!”Just as Roger Sterling taught us that the proper way to celebrate Pearl Harbor Day is to start drinking at 7:55 am and then traipse around the office in a formal Christmas-themed Hawaiian shirt over a button down and tie, “Mad Men” writers have dedicated this season to teaching viewers about the various religions and cultural movements.
And what better follow-up to last week’s class on Judaica (when Roger pitched the Manischewitz account) than a lesson plan about Hare Krishnas!
Yes, former Sterling Cooper copywriter Paul Kinsey has traded his suits for cult-friendly saffron robes, sans shoes and hair except for a dashing braid that sprouts out of his Gerber baby-like bald head.
Poor, poor Paul Kinsey.
First his African American girlfriend dumps him when they are registering black voters in the South; then he isn't taken onboard SCDP; and, finally, after hopscotching from McCann to Y&R to B&B to in-house at the A&P Supermarket chain, he meets someone named 'Mother Lakshmi' and joins the Hare Krishnas. 'Sometimes I don't even think Krishna likes me,' he whines.
Adding insult to injury, Paul has written crappy 'Star Trek' fan-fiction script that he wants Harry to sell to NBC so that he can settle down with Lakshmi.
It's called the 'Negron Complex' and 'the twist is that the Negron is white,' Harry deadpans. Paul, Paul, Paul.
Harry might have chanted along with the Krishnas and given the 'Star Trek' script a read, but to be perfectly honest, Paul's new path is giving Crane 'the willies.'
Then Mother Lakshmi takes matters into her own hands when she storms into his office, tells him, 'When you were chanting, I felt this intensity everywhere in my body ... especially one place.'
Harry objects, first mentioning Paul and then his wife, until Lakshmi bends over his desk and says, 'take me like this.' Then Harry whips off his pants and Clark Kent glasses faster than you can say Superman. Sally was right, the city is a dirty place.
Lakshmi then reveals her bizarre master plan: She slept with Harry only so that he would tell Paul his script is bad and, thus, Paul would stay with the Krishnas. 'He's our best recruiter. I mean, he really can close.'
Harry then gives Paul $500, says his script was amazing, and convinces him to book it to Los Angeles, without Lakshmi. Best friends forever.
No? That's what I thought. If I didn't think that Lane's shenanigans would lead to a shit storm at the end of the season, I'd spare you.
Here's a brief rundown: Lane owes $8,000 in back taxes to jolly old England. Rather than telling the partners at SCDP about his financial woes, he decides to forge a check in Don's name. Because that's always a good idea. While this, how should I put it, act of embezzlement should be covered by the Christmas bonuses he's been pushing, things fall through when Mohawk Air goes on strike and pulls all advertising. Partners get no bonuses and Lane is stuck having stolen enough money to buy a Jaguar and a half.
Considering that Joan is the glue that holds the office--not to mention this week's episode--together, it wasn't surprising that she was responsible for reigning in an intoxicated Roger Sterling (who was celebrating Pearl Harbor Day, of course).
What was surprising is that Joan and Roger finally had an on-screen conversation on a topic we probably will never hear Pete and Peggy broach: their baby.
It turns out that not only has Roger been sending Joan checks, but Joan has been returning them. The redheaded powerhouse tells Roger that if he continues sending money, even for Kevin's college tuition, he won't even get the privilege of being a family friend. Burn.
'We created a human life,' Roger said as jaws across the country dropped. 'We made a baby.'
'Yes, and now it's some other lucky girl's turn,' Joan said as she pushed him out the door, then summoning Roger's latest office crush: 'Scarlett.'
Joan tells Don that, before her marriage, when she got deliveries at Sterling Cooper, they used to be flowers. This week, Joan got served with divorce papers from her evil rapist soon-to-be-ex.
'He said he knew you! He said it was a surprise!' the receptionist says when Joan berates her for letting the process server with the divorce papers in. Then, in a brilliant moment that will go down in 'Mad Men' history, Joan chucks a sculpture of an aeroplane at the reception desk and yells, 'Surprise! There's an aeroplane here to see you!'
No stranger to the perils of divorce, Don takes it upon himself to raise Joan's spirits. Don has to test drive a Jaguar, a potential new account, anyway, so he takes Joan along to play his wife at the dealership. After debatably committing grand theft auto, Don and Joan drive the car to a midtown bar and have a beautiful and sincere talk about love, marriage, divorce, and moving on.
Moving on? 'With a baby?' Joan asks. 'And when do you share that news?'
'After you go all the way,' Don responds, before leaving her to flirt with a man who has been staring at her all evening.
The next morning Don sends Joan the bouquet of flowers she deserves.
Things might be going well for Don and Joan, but there's trouble in the Draper household. When Don and Megan fight over a play Megan dragged him to that pokes fun at advertising, Don announces, 'no one's taken a stronger stand against advertising than you.' Megan has betrayed his first love, and perhaps this is what pushes him to actually start giving a damn at work again.
SCDP finally has a shot at a car, which could make the agency. To the partners' shock (and pleasure), Don decides to give a rousing speech to the SCDP troops as they prepare to spend every weekend through the new year in the office, creating work that will win them the Jaguar account.
'Prepare to swim across the English Channel and then drown in champagne,' he announces. 'When we land Jaguar, the world will know we've arrived.'
Although, it might not be a great idea to have the staff actually spend Christmas in the office. Didn't someone lose a foot in a tractor accident the last time the celebrated a holiday (Fourth of July) in house?
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