I think Sally showed she's different than Betty by kissing the telescope dude instead of the hunk.
Mad Men Mid-Season finale
What say you? Is Don going crazy? Is Sally's transformation into Betty irreversible?
My take on it: the final number "The best things in life are free" was the not so subtle hint at Don's downfall. All the important things in his life - the non material things - are disappearing. Him and Megan are done. Burt is dead. Roger will be his boss and that could lead to disastrous things for their relationship. Peggy is no-longer his protege and instead is taking the creative reins. though he's about to be several million dollars richer, he's about to be completely alone.
It's not an original observation, as we all knew that one possible outcome is Don swirling into life as a lonely alcoholic.
Hmmm... Interesting point, hadn't thought about that.
I was more focused on the cigarette pose, but that's a very good point and her kissing the "nerd" and not the football star (note Don's football past referenced in the episode) is certainly not without meaning
There are definite similarities between Sally and Betty. No doubt. One of the most interesting aspects of the show, IMO, are the differences between the old generation (Don, Roger, Betty, etc) and the new generation (Sally, Roger's daughter, Peggy, the new creative women and men, etc). It's like a sociological study of how generations both overlap and how they differ. How culture slowly and sometimes rapidly changes.
Pete is really interesting to me. He seems to be part of both the new and old. Stuck in between.
Grantland's Molly Lambert hit it on the head I think:
Sally also got a taste of moon overexcitement, getting so worked up over stargazing with her mom’s friend’s nerdy son that she kissed him instead of the hot son she’d been working up a head full of steam for all week. Sally’s spontaneous choice to pursue the geeky brother seemed like an opportunity to flex her burgeoning sexual power, which is blossoming with the blonde good looks she got from Betty. She’s also inherited Don’s skill at seduction as sport. She’ll probably practice on nerds until she works up the courage to go for hot guys, whose physical beauty and self-confidence currently makes them too intimidating. Given her parents, looks, and age, her days of making flighty destructive decisions for the purpose of experience are probably just beginning. Smoking a cigarette in the backyard in her lavender ensemble, Sally looked just like her mother and a little bit just like her father too — she instantly matured into the protagonist of a Lana Del Rey song.
Sally is becoming as much or more Don as she is Betty. With Sally's rejection of Betty's life choices and Peggy, Joan & others raising the glass ceiling higher, Sally is poised to far surpass Betty. Especially if she continues to learn Don's skills she could be a terrific business woman. But then again if there is no Don around she could be a teenage train wreck.
Already at least as mature as her Mother?
That was a great send off not just to Bert but to Robert Morse. I think that is end of all the business dealings and season 7b will bring closure on a personal level to each characters. I thought the Megan Don break up was well done as they knew they didn't need to milk it out. Finally, can Hamm finally win the Emmy he so much deserves?!
I think Elizabeth Moss should get an Emmy first.
I liked how they turned her character around for the better this half-season. She was nearly unbearable to watch the first 4 or so episodes of season 7a, and then she was much more enjoyable to watch towards the end.
Yeah, but the fact that her character evokes negative emotion sometimes speaks to the potency of her acting. Like Lena Headey in Game of Thrones.
I thought Roger was pretty much his boss- he's the guy that "found" Don and developed him- plus was Don a partner before the current agency- as in Sternling-Cooper?
And I'm a little surprised at how much Trouble Don got into- he was completely ostracized, but Ted threatened to commit murder-suicide with clients and it's all water under the bridge? WTF.
Roger was Don's boss at first, but he was never really "the boss." He never made boss-type decisions and never had to come down on Don for anything. With Burt gone and Roger officially the president of the company (or division we should now say), roger will actually be the one whom the buck stops, so to speak.
Hopefully that makes sense?
This episode was not so convincing in the major changes. For one, the final partners' meeting was way too easy. Felt rushed. Sterling just said a number, and everyone had dollar signs in their eyes. I can buy Joan selling out if we knew a money issue was important to her motivation, but they tried to retroactively seed money issues by mentioning how Don blew up a previous deal. Meh, one of the most interseting things happening lately was Joan's hostility toward Don, but there was no time to resolve that, so we'll just give her lots of $$. I think she'd have more to say about being your own boss and having ownership of her own future instead of just being wealthy. This would also be a good time for her to criticize the way the men run things because they just keep buying and selling the company into new forms so they can push each other around without really creating anything.
And then Ted is suddenly okay with moving back to New York since he can "just work" and not deal with the businness nonsense. The whole point of moving to LA was to get away from Peggy, so I can't say I buy his decision either if he's just going right back into that mess.
All in all, I thought Peggy's storyline was really the only thing that worked in this episode, though Don's call to Megan did feel very real, especially when she paused to drink silently.
In retrospect, I think the half-season would have been well served by embracing the perspectives of Cutler and Lou Avery more and keeping the focus on their schemes to muscle Don out of the agency - that was cool but underutilized.
I have a different take with Joan.
Joan has always been about surival. It's not that she was every really upset at Don the person (they've had many mutually positive personal interactions). Rather, she was upset that Don was/could ruin what she had worked and sacrificed (more than anyone) for. She's survived in a male-dominated world by playing "the game" with her sexuality. She was encouraged to have sex with a client to ensure they gained that client and eventually decided to do it, after guaranteeing herself a partnership.
Now that partnership is about to payoff, literally. $1.2M is enough for me to make a quick, no-brainer decision. In 1970 money, that's almost 4 million. Is the control Joan has with a 10% partnership really at all close to 4 million dollars when you are a single parent? Espectially with volatile Don always on the verge of ruining all that she had built for herself.
Personally, I think she figured out that Don confronted Lane about the embezzled funds and she blames Don for his death on some way.
Agree that it seemed rushed and what little dissension was resolved so quickly and easily. While I realize there's a lot of money at stake, Bert Cooper had commented to Don in one of the earlier episodes that the company was doing just fine without him. I'm sure the partners were making good money. Maybe not the one time financial windfall about to come to them from giving up controlling interest, but good money nonetheless. I thought Harry Hamlin's character would have put up more resistance since it seems his main goal this half season has been to rid the agency of Don. Maybe though he saw with Joan only thinking about dollars and Ted on the verge of leaving, his battle to get rid of Don was going to be a lot tougher.
LMAO at water under the bridge....
Absolutely loved the episode. Don gathering the partners and telling Cutler "motion denied" was awesome. Too bad about Cooper.
"I hope Don doesn't have brain cancer"
RIP Bert. The shoes off during the song and dance was well done
Bert Cooper sure as hell was a weird bird. Could never wrap my mind around that guy.
Not entirely sure why they had to kill him off (maybe he'll appear in some more Don hallucinations? Prolly not...). If you ever get a chance to see the movie "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" you can almost see Bert Cooper grown up from J Pierpont Finch.
Somehow, I never liked Megan/Jessica Paré, glad to see they wrote her off gracefully.
...but I'll take Linda Cardelini as Sylvia Rosen (the Doc's wife) or Neve Campbell as Lee Cabot (that one brief cameo on the plane) over Megan any day.
I think Don's going to end up in a good way.
My boy Dick Whitman had his cake and ate it too until Betty left him. Ever since, Dick has shown cracks in that macho facade. Loved the plane scene when Ted scared those clients shitless.
Harry Crane can't catch a break. Well, strike that. Harry Crane couldn't strike while the iron was finally hot.
And I thought this thread was a video review of the Copper Bowl.
1) I love that Matt Weiner let 83 year-old Robert Morse show his Broadway chops in the last scene. Nice nod to the old man.
2) Don seemingly has semi-normal realtionships with only two females in the world: Peggy and Sally (recently normal with Sally; pretty fucked up prior to the "This is the whorehouse I grew up in" scene). I'm very curious where the story arc is going with these two. The story here in Chicago is that Don is semi-based on Draper Daniels, a great copywriter in the 60s who ended up marrying another copywriter whose work he admired...Peggy?
I wouldn't think they would try to track one man so closely. I remember some talk about the ending being sad and showing the downfall of their ways. But, I am not sure who mentioned that (it was early in the series in a NPR interview with Terri Gross).
several moments between Don and Peggy the last few weeks that made me see them coming together. As lonely as they both are their recent interactions evolve around where they see their own self value as opposed to escape.
Why would he tell her and take a chance on screwing up the presentation? No Internet, no email and long distance was not cheap then, she wouldn't know and he was not going to tell her.
that I thought was going to happen, didn't happen. I figured after Peggy, Don and Pete completely redid the Burger Chef presentation without Lou's knowledge or consent Lou's reaction and the obvious rift between him and the rest of the team was going to be one of the storylines.
I wanted more Scout's Honor.
Night After Night until the next episode airs, Lou Avery might have to worry about whether that was his last show.
But, you never know. Lou might be coming back better than ever.
I disagree with your take on the episode. I thought the whole season was about Don's redemption, not his downfall. Now, things may still end badly for him at the conclusion of Season 8, but this season was a redemption story, and a beautiful one. Don changed everything about himself. He didn't bang the low-hanging fruit, didn't drink, was selfless. But most of all he was dead honest about everything, and it's been fascinating to see how that has played for him. He's slowly learning that the best things in life are free. Just a beautiful episode. God, this show is good.
Don has been forced to back up a little. He is becoming more Dick Whitman and less Don Draper.
Anyone else know Bert was dead when Roger's phone rang during the moon landing? I'm not sure why, but as soon as it started ringing I said out loud "Bert's dead".
I don't think Don's dream of Bert's dance number at the end was anything other than a way to honor Robert Morse.
This show rocks, it sucks that its all coming to an end. Also, I'd be suprised if Don and Peggy end up together.
Don and Peggy are going to end up together, start their own company.
Don ends up falling madly in love with Peggy. She turns him down because she is smart and knows he is damaged goods. He ends up in a spiral.