And leaving aside any feelings about his personal affront to Joan just now: Eight people departed SC under cover of night to form this agency. Five of them are sitting as partners in this room; one was a partner before he took his own life, and one left the agency because she knew she couldn't go any farther. Harry's request has merit, although the fact that he spent two seasons as an insufferable buffoon goes a long way to explain why they won't take him seriously now. And while, as I said, I'm taking the position that Harry's growing up, in light of this public shaming of Joan, I am absolutely not saying he's not growing up to be an asshole. Joan looks a bit crestfallen, while Roger definitely seems like he's thinking he got more than he bargained for here. Bertram assures Joan that Harry is not going to be made partner, but Pete gently tells her that he doesn't want to appear to be in Harry's camp, but the Commission on Human Rights is investigating their industry regarding the employment of "Negroes," (is that a term progressive-minded Pete would use in 1968?) and Don adds to Pete's position by offering that Dawn's a good secretary. Joan, probably never too attached to canning Dawn in the first place, agrees, but asks about Scarlett. Bertram, however, suggests that "this humiliation" will suffice as punishment, so Pete suggests they continue with the billings, and Joan asks Meredith where they were. Meredith: "'Meredith, why don't you step out.'" She doesn't get it until Joan is like "..." at her, and I'd suggest Joan take the rest of the day off if I didn't know what kind of night is in store for her.
Nikki is once again awaiting Dawn, and this time she's fuming, so when Dawn finally shows up, Nikki snits that she'd better have brought the bridal magazines she promised. Dawn, however, is in no mood, and snaps right back that she "had a day today that pushed your stupid wedding to the bottom of the list." Nikki asks if she got fired, but Dawn tells her no. "I don't think so. I can't tell at that place." Hee. When Nikki hears the details, she reminds Dawn that she warned her "those girls" aren't her friends, and when they look at her, all they see is "Yes, sir!" Un!Comfortable! Dawn, however, tells Nikki that everyone's scared there, and she sees people of both genders crying all the time. "Sounds like New Year's Eve when they empty the garbage, there's so many bottles." Just as well Dawn never experienced what it was like to work at the old SC. She goes on to remind Nikki about Pryce, but she's not impressed, sarcastically replying that the white people have it so bad they must be jealous of Dawn. Dawn, however, tells her she wants to keep her job, so she's going to keep her head down. Interesting that in a whole conversation about her work, Dawn doesn't once mention her boss. I don't know what it means, but it's got to be a first for a secretary of Don's. Nikki tells Dawn she couldn't do what Dawn does, but Dawn's just over everything at this point: "Well, you don't have to. You're getting married." The fact that it's on the nose is mitigated by the sugar-free-ness.