Mar 15, 2015

Mad Cap: "Christmas Waltz"

Left to right: Rich Sommer and Michael Gladis
Welcome to Mad Cap: a daily rundown of every episode of the acclaimed AMC series Mad Men. During this time, I will be compiling my thoughts and highlights as we travel through every moment and season of the Emmy-award winning drama that has come to define modern TV. The goal is to be a refresher on every moment for Don Draper and his band of advertisement executives leading up to the final season. Stay for all of the shocking moments and the brilliant acting performances, and make sure to chime in with your thoughts and criticisms on why the show means something to you.

Season 5, Episode 10
"Christmas Waltz"

"Surprise! There's an airplane here to see you."
- Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks)


Harry Crane (Rich Sommer) discovers that Paul Kinsey (Michael Gladis) is now into Hare Krishna. He is also wanting to get Harry to send someone at a TV network his Star Trek script. The problem is that Harry doesn't think it's any good. Lane Pryce (Jared Harris) is trying to land the Jaguar account as the company discovers that Mohawk Airlines are going on strike. Don Draper (Jon Hamm) spends time with Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks) after Roger Sterling (John Slattery) tries to get back together with her on account that they had a baby. Megan Draper (Jessica Pare) is annoyed that Don doesn't find passion in his job anymore. Joan gets divorce papers and talks to Don to get some relief while realizing his charm. Harry wants Paul to fly to Los Angeles and try to pitch the scripts himself. It eventually comes to the point where the staff of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce admit that they are going to work hard to land the Jaguar account because it would give them recognition.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Christina Hendricks
Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks)

It's the holidays and nobody is having a worse time about everything than Joan is. Sure, she may seem confident on the inside, but with a lousy secretary, divorce papers and Sterling hitting on her, this is all just time that she wants to be alone. She shows ferocious anger as she tries to handle everything. She is a newly single mother and doesn't need anyone telling her what to do. Somehow, she finds solace in Don and ends up having a lot of fun looking at cars and going to midtown for drinks. Everything works out, but this is very much a Joan episode in that it explores everything that makes the character appealing when her control disappears and she is forced to cooperate with people she doesn't necessarily want to.

Best Scene

It's the holidays and everyone is trying to get through it without any problems. As the episode comes to a close, everyone gets together for a meeting about the bonuses and other office politics. The reality is that it sets up everything perfectly for the final three episodes. They have to land the Jaguar account and improve their image. The scene plays as a Hail Mary pass that will potentially improve the company and put their name in a new stratosphere. Suddenly, everything doesn't seem so bad and they have a lot of work to do to make good on their goals. It is a moment full of uncertainty with a team that has differing opinions on the company. Can they pull it off? We'll just have to wait and see.

UP NEXT: "The Other Woman"

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