This Week in Irresponsible Mad Men Recaps: Where’s My Betty Draper Hysterics?

Responsible Mad Men recapping blogs probably try and follow the narrative arch of the episode, and they’d probably delve a little more into the fact that Sterling Cooper is once again up for sale, which makes Lane Pryce sad and his wife very happy.  I am not that blog.  Now let’s do this thing irresponsible style!

So Paul Kinsey was intimidated by Peggy and her keen improvisational skills, and then he got too drunk while working on his Western Union account.  This taught us all the important lesson that you should always write down the brilliant ideas that you have when you’re drunk so you don’t forget them.  If he had written it down, we’d have instead learned the equally important lesson that the brilliant ideas that you have when you’re drunk are never as brilliant in the sober light of day, but that’s neither here nor there.  Anyways, Peggy fortunately used his screw up to save him, and I was I left baffled that telegrams were something people still actually used in 1963.  Also, maybe it’s just me and my love of all things of questionable taste, but Aquanet is doing wonders to Peggy’s hair.  

In other plot lines, Don’s relationship with Suzanne Farrell unfortunately continues to happen:

don draper suzanne farrell do not want

I find this plot to be like the narrative version of Ipecaca, and I blame this largely on the fact that Ms. Farrell hasn’t once seemed interesting enough to warrant such of devotion.  A scene with a Maypole, a drunk dial, and a few lines of straight up crazy is all it takes to have Don Draper all up in your lady business in a serious sort of way?  I’m deeply unimpressed with the both of them.  And the fact that the writers continue this charade.

The lone silver lining to their bumping uglies, though, came in the form of Suzanne’s epileptic brother, Danny, who was helped by Don to do what else?  Pull a Don Draper.  That’s just him being philanthropic by sharing his secret to happiness and success: it comes from running away from the unpleasant parts of your identity.  Or, in Don’s case, all of it.  You may be constantly haunted by your past and incapable of genuine human intimacy, but at least you’ll get signing bonuses and shiny awards at the fortieth anniversary Sterling Cooper parties.  Fair trade, I’d say.

And speaking of fortieth anniversary Sterling Cooper parties, Trudy Campbell’s party ensemble was some kind of wonderful:


trudy campbell sterling cooper party dress

Zing and zang does this outfit delight me so.  The colors and sequins alone are enough to make it a winning number in my book, but it’s those gimungous earrings that make it an all-star success.  Once again I’m impressed by Trudy’s sartorial choices.  And now I’m additionally impressed by her cast-iron earlobes.

Most importantly, though, was this:

Betty.  Draper.  KNOWS.

Of course, it’s up in the air as opposed to how much she knows and what all she’s been able to piece together from this discovery, but I find the answer ultimately irrelevant.  If nothing else, Betty Draper sitting alone in the kitchen with a glass of wine and Don’s box of secrets is one of the saddest moments this season has had.  And watching her at episode’s end sit so composed next to that smug bastard at the Sterling Cooper party?

betty draper don draper sterling cooper party

I couldn’t figure out if I was more heartbroken or frustrated.  I certainly appreciate how gradually Mad Men brings its tensions and emotions to a boil and how–like real life–there’s never a guarantee to a cathartic release, but I need some melodrama to ease the tension, and it should preferably come in the form of a Betty Draper hysterical meltdown.  

Seriously, I can’t deal with the train wreck that is Don and Betty’s marriage with all all the deception and disappointment and unspoken frustrations and Betty not getting some sweet silverfox lovin’ from Henry Francis much longer.  Somethings gotta give, and at this point it’s either gotta be her loins or her psyche, dammit!  Perhaps such demands sound ridiculous, but I can’t help myself: I’m melodramaddicted.  

Blame it on a hardcore love for Douglas Sirk and Peyton Place that has caused me to read late-50s/early-60s decor and attire as visual cues to anticipate screaming and crying and general histrionics.  Blame it on the ecstatic rush I feel whenever I see someone hurl a dish in the heat of an argument or being left with no choice but to slap a bitch.  Or, you know, just blame it on the homosexuality.  Whatever the case, I’m damn well liable to explode at this point.  But this is Mad Men, so that’s a good thing.

Oh, and on a closing note:

Awesome.

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3 Responses

  1. Love Mad Men. Love your recaps.

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  2. […] comically surreal in that it was like seeing 1960s version of Twitter go down, but nobody turned to Western Union telegrams to vent their […]

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  3. […] This Week in Irresponsible Mad Men Recaps: Where’s My Betty Draper Hysterics? (S. 3, Ep. 10: “The Color Blue”) […]

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