Mad Men

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Couch Baron: B+ | 1 USERS: A+
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Don's in his office when Joan buzzes that Bobbi, who you no doubt remember from last week, is there "at my desk." Don has Joan show her in, and when Joan's gone, Don chastises her for showing up unannounced. She tells him she was in the neighborhood, and her demeanor is a lot more tractable than it was last week -- it even seems like she's trying to be ingratiating, although since I hate her it's not working. Don looks unsettled by this change, although it could just be that she forgot to wear a chastity belt and as such is feeling rather vulnerable in his presence. She tells Don that she has an idea for a TV show -- it'd be like Candid Camera, only Jimmy would host it and be his normal dickish self, and it would be called Grin And Bear It. If Jimmy's really going to host, I hope Bobbi's willing to settle for half the title. Don thinks it's a great idea, as it's "derivative with a twist," which is what TV execs are looking for. He goes on that ABC is sick about losing Candid Camera, but the challenge would be to get Jimmy out of his contract at Utz, and Bobbi replies that she's thought about that -- Utz could come on as a sponsor. Of course, Jimmy could just call Edith a fat cow again, but Bobbi's way probably has the potential to make more money. Don doesn't think Bobbi's idea would work, however, as the show would need a national sponsor and Utz doesn't qualify, but he does point out that Utz might be persuaded that their spots would pack more punch if Jimmy were a TV star. Bobbi likes the way Don thinks, and then goes to the door and locks it, which Joan hears above her typing. Inside, Bobbi asks Don to sell the show for her. He tells her he's not interested in that job, but he will talk to the Schillings for her. She repays him by coming over and planting one on him. He lamely tells her that he's got work, but she calls bullshit on that, and tosses her coat to the floor meaningfully.

Okay, I need to go on a little sidebar about this whole Don and Bobbi thing, because it's bugging the crap out of me, and I'll feel better if I explain why. So Don was a confirmed philanderer last season. Beyond the fact that this was obviously what a lot of guys did back then, there were clear, specific, character-based reasons for his propensity to cheat in general, his need for someone besides Betty, and his attraction to both Rachel and Midge. This season, in the first two episodes, the show went to great lengths to show that Don was trying to be a good family man. But along comes Bobbi, for whom I think it's safe to say Don feels nothing, and yet after a couple of half-assed protests he gives in to her, twice. If the show hadn't painted Don as such a strong character, or if he had cheated again with someone with whom he had a strong emotional bond, it wouldn't have bothered me, but the way it's gone down makes his earlier efforts to be a good husband seem cheap and hollow. Maybe the show intended for Don and Bobbi to have more of a connection, but it hasn't happened that way, at least for me, and that renders this whole plotline disappointing and dramatically unsatisfying, at least so far. But the show has zigged when I thought it would zag many times before, so hopefully this story will turn interesting soon.

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Mad Men

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