Mad Men
The Suitcase

Episode Report Card
Couch Baron: A+ | 15 USERS: A+
YOU GRADE IT
Float Like a Butterfly…

...but as they get in the doors of SCDP, Don is not feeling so great, and Peggy has to guide him to the bathroom. There's a funny moment when she pauses uncertainly in front of the restrooms, not sure which one to pick given their mixed company, but she opts for the men's room, which I think is the obvious choice for purely selfish reasons, given what's about to happen. Don staggers into a stall and retches rather loudly and profusely, and all I can say it's a good thing he uses so much Brylcreem, as it's obviating the need for Peggy to hold his hair back. As Don continues voiding his stomach, Peggy looks at the outside of the first stall, which reads, "For a good time, call Caroline." There's no number with it and it looks like someone who was seeing triple wrote it; throw in the required maturity level and all signs point to Roger. Once the tsunami has been downgraded to intermittent waves, Peggy asks if she can get Don water or toothpaste or anything, but someone calling her name from off-screen quickly diverts her attention...

...and when she emerges from the bathroom, she sees Duck wandering drunkenly about. She follows him into Roger's office, in which she finds him farting (awesome episode for the sound designers) and taking down his pants and squatting as he explains he's "leaving Draper a little present." I hope SCDP has a lot of money budgeted for custodial staff Christmas tips. Peggy is able to stem the tide of disgusting bodily output by telling Duck that it's Roger's office, not Don's, although given their business relationship I'm kind of surprised Duck didn't let fly anyway. He manages to refasten his pants, but it hardly helps make him appear any more dignified as he babbles that he needs Peggy. We learn that he spoke to her roommate, who told him she was still at work, and also that he's the one that made the call she ignored right before she and Don went out to dinner. Speaking of Don, he's made it out of the bathroom, although not without some vomit on his shirt, and when he sees Peggy and Duck heading for the elevator, he asks what's going on. Duck immediately jumps, or drunkenly staggers, to the wrong conclusion, and after he spills the beans about his past relationship with Peggy (although he says "We were in love," which is at least half debatable), he says that as it turns out, Peggy's just another whore. Don, of course, takes a swing in defense of Peggy's honor, but whichever Duck he tried to hit isn't one that's actually there, and Duck quickly gets Don on the floor and threateningly tells him he killed seventeen men in Okinawa. He doesn't add "just to watch them die," which is a lost opportunity to my way of thinking, and Don, looking like this burst of physical activity is enough to send him to the bathroom stall again, gives, like, he literally says "Uncle." After everyone's back standing, Peggy starts to follow Duck to the elevator, but spares a look back to see Don wearily trudging into his office. Peggy, I don't care if your mother was there -- that dinner has got to be looking better now.

Sometime later, Don's sitting forlornly on his office couch when Peggy returns, saying she got rid of Duck and asking if he's okay. Don says yes before returning the question, and Peggy starts to launch into a stilted explanation about her and Duck before Don stops her and says she doesn't have to explain. She smiles, probably at his proven but long-untested ability not to judge her about non-work-related things, but when he asks if she'll get him a drink, she brings herself to wonder aloud how long he's going to go on like this. He declines to answer, instead explaining the necessity for this particular libation: "I have to make a phone call, and I know it's going to be bad, okay?" Peggy nods, perhaps flashing back to the mention of the California call earlier, and asks if he wants to be alone, but he simply repeats his request for a drink, and she obliges him. Once she elects to join him on the couch, though, he slides his head into her lap and whispers that he's sorry if he embarrassed her, but she merely shushes him and takes a sip of the drink she made for him as he drifts off to sleep. It's easy to overlook with such big scenes coming, but this one and the one in the bar were positively incandescent, with so much expressed by both of them with typically Spartan amounts of dialogue. A quick cross fade into a close-up of the phone...

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