MAD MEN: Season 1 Episode 9 – “Shoot”
Viewed at home on the couch, by myself, in the late afternoon.
In this episode, I actually started to enjoy the child-like ice queen known as Betty Draper. A few posts ago I predicted that we were about to see another side of Betty, and it turns out I was right. The meat of this episode is about a rival advertising agency trying to steal the suave Don Draper away from Sterling Cooper’s Madison Avenue roost. Jim Hobart, the man fishing for Draper, happens to meet the Drapers at the opera during a production of Fiorello!. He compliments Betty on her Grace Kelly looks and suggests she model for their new Coca-Cola ad campaign. Betty suddenly decides to take him up on it and make a sudden return to the modeling career she left behind when she met Don. Little does she know the offer is just another way for Hobart to steal Draper away from Sterling Cooper – much like the golf clubs and the hefty salary he dangles in front of the “mad man.”
When Draper decides not to take the job at the other company, Betty suddenly gets dropped from her ad campaign and instead of telling her husband the truth, tells him that she’s decided to be a stay at home wife again because, after all, she hates having Don come home to leftovers every night. During her working mom absence, the kids have let the family dog snatch one of the neighbor’s pigeons, though the dog doesn’t injure it too badly. The neighbor threatens to shoot the dog if it comes on to his property again. At the end of the episode, Betty Draper does this to retaliate, and I fall just a little in love with Don Draper’s super square wife.
Back at the office, Peggy Olson’s weight gain has become office fodder. Weight gain, shmeight gain. Can anyone spell P-R-E-G-N-A-N-T with Pete Campbell’s devil spawn? Olson rips the seam of her skirt when she leans over in her chair, and covers it by wearing her sweater around her waist all 7th grade style. Joan Holloway tries to help by loaning Olson an ill fitting red dress.
I can’t believe how much I like this show compared to when I first started watching it. I’m ready to tear through the rest of the season so I can start up the second season. There is no doubt the show has gotten better as the season gains momentum – they definitely started to hit their stride mid-season. Mad Men is also a period piece – every last detail fits into the exact time period the show is set in. Despite this, the show manages to be completely relevant. While the offices and clothing are a bit different, and everyone might be a bit more drunk then they are now when noon rolls around, it still goes to show that the human experience hasn’t changed all that much.