Mad Men

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Love And Marriage

We open on a close-up of a Life magazine ad of a Volkswagen Beetle with the ironic tagline "Lemon." Don, on the train to work, is so engrossed that he doesn't seem at first to notice when a heavyset guy looks at him and greets him as "Dick." Well, Don may not be the most gregarious guy, but that still seems a little rude. Oh, but he's actually addressing Don as "Richard Whitman," which gets Don's attention. The guy jovially re-introduces himself as "Larry Krizinsky," from Fort Sill, and Don, interestingly, shakes his hand without any comment about the "Dick Whitman" name. The two of them make small talk that's awkward on one side, although in Don's defense, he's not much for chatting even when the subject isn't his secret past. They reach Larry's stop, and he gets off, but not before giving Don his card and saying they should catch up. He chuckles, "Old Dick Whitman. What are the chances?" A lot smaller than you even know, my portly friend. Don, for his part, somehow restrains himself from taking his cigarette and burning Larry's card right there. The ticket-taker comes by and observes the Volkswagen ad now lying on the empty seat next to Don, and chuckles to himself. Oh, Ticket Taker, you're not supposed to have any fun in a grunt job like yours. Are you some kind of psycho?

Sterling Cooper. Paul, Ken, and Harry get on the elevator, Paul greeting the operator with a "Morning, Hollis." After a little random France-bashing, Pete appears, and the boys warmly welcome him back and try to get some dish on the honeymoon out of him. Pete tries to deflect by saying that the wedding ceremony changed him, especially the part where the minister talked about being "newly baptized." Harry: "So, what you're saying is, a lot of missionary?" The boys guffaw, while I cringe just at the mere thought of Pete having, um, positions. Although it would be interesting to learn that Pete's wife is actually a dominatrix. The amusement at that revelation would slightly outweigh the psychological trauma. The boys get off the elevator, and Hollis is like, "There's another two minutes of my life I'll never get back."

Inside, Pete is telling Ken that his wife talked about things she had planned for them to do on their trip, but they [wink-wink] never got around to them. Glad to see that Pete's attempts at discretion last about as long as his attempts at sex. Several women around the office give Pete friendly hellos and welcome-backs, and he's mildly thrown by how amiable everyone's being until he opens the door to his office and sees a few random Asian people sitting around eating soup and watching a live chicken march around. This might make more sense to me if there were alcohol flowing. The guy inside yells at Pete in accented English to close the door, and Pete obliges before asking the giggling crowd, "Who put the Chinaman in my office?" I'll admit I was never in a fraternity, but I still find this more offensive than funny. At least know Bertram would agree with me. Everyone laughs and disperses, and I hope those chickens haven't been running around too long, or Hildy's day is going to be even worse than usual.

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Mad Men




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