Mar 29, 2015

Mad Cap: "In Care Of"

Jon Hamm
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 6, Episode 13
"In Care Of"


"Not great, Bob."
- Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser)

Plot:

After getting into a drunken brawl with a religious nut, Don Draper (Jon Hamm) realizes that he is tired of living in New York. He wants to move to Los Angeles. Thankfully, the company is establishing a branch on the west coast. With everyone vying for a spot, there's a lot of conflict. Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss) begins seeing Ted Chaough (Kevin Rahm) again. Ted wants to move to Los Angeles to get away from and avoid future problems. Meanwhile, Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) discovers that his mother fell overboard on a boat and died. He immediately blames Bob Benson's (James Wolk) friend. This makes their trip to Detroit for BMW especially awkward. While piecing together his back story, we discover that Don has an affinity for Hershey's chocolate because of how he pickpocketed people in a whorehouse. Everyone else thinks that Don has lost it and decide to send him on temporary leave. Meanwhile, Megan Draper (Jessica Pare) quits her job under the assumption that she's moving with her husband. Pete doesn't get any closure. Roger Sterling (John Slattery) drops in on Joan  Holloway's (Christina Hendricks) Christmas and runs into Bob, whom he reveals to be jealous of. Don takes his children to the house that he grew up in.


Rating: 5 out of 5

MVP:
Don Draper (Jon Hamm)

Just like that, the story of Dick Whitman continues to expand. This time, it seems like Don forces it out due to severe repression. He loses it at a pitch meeting and ends up revealing just how sick of New York he really is. If anything, this is about Don coming to the end of his rope with the company. He ends up in jail and blows a client to his most beloved chocolate all because he has a conflicting past that he can't run away from anymore. It will be interesting to see where things go when he lands in Los Angeles next season. Will it solve all of his problems as it seems to have done in the past? One can  only wonder. However, the burning out of Don this season has been rather solid and enjoyable to watch alongside everyone losing faith in him.

Best Scene

I don't know what it is about the pitch meetings, but sometimes they spin pure gold. It has been awhile since there was one that packed so much of a punch as Don's meeting with Hershey's. The charismatic man who just recently turned on Ted Chaough (Kevin Rahm) for getting personal blows it by deciding to come clean about his past. The chocolate means something to  him. It has nothing to do with the actual marketing, but he feels the need to say it. In the end, he asks them not to promote their product, which is antithetical to what the company does. This is the moment that Don publicly snaps and it is quite an interesting one packed with information and more proof that Jon Hamm should have won an Emmy several times by now. Fingers crossed that he will for the final season.


Overall Season Thoughts

While it is my least favorite of the past three, it is not by much. I personally prefer the more modern episodes of Mad Men to the early runs because they feel more fluid and the characters are all more realized. The only problem with this season was that I felt it fell into too many of the familiar traps that I didn't like about the show early on. Don was getting burned out. That's perfectly fine, though a little redundant giving last season's great arc of Don sacrificing everything for other people's success. However, this season felt also a little too predicated on current events serving as metaphors for the stories themselves. This wasn't problematic, as some were excellently incorporated. However, some still felt a little forced. I still argue that Sally Draper (Kiernan Shipka) is an unstoppable force who has only gotten better. I love that Bob Benson is bugging Pete Campbell, which may be the greatest comedic relief in the show's history. Again, it may be a step down from last season, but it still has all of the charm and charisma of its predecessor. It's just that the subject matter may be a little more hard to clamor onto this time around.


Overall Rating: 4 out of 5


UP NEXT: "Time Zones"

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