Mar 16, 2015

Mad Cap: "The Other Woman"

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 11
"The Other Woman"

"That may be enough money to turn your 
head and I just want to discourage you."
- Lane Pryce (Jared Harris)


Everyone is working hard to land the Jaguar client. Don Draper (Jon Hamm) begins to express disinterest in it while everyone else thinks that they can use Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks) to seduce a man with power. Her catch is that she wants 5% of the overall shares of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce. The pitch meeting goes very well and they are beginning work on the campaign. However, Don is burned out on it hardcore. Also, Megan Draper (Jessica Pare) must decide if it's enough for her to go on tour with a show or stay in town with Don. Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss) decides that enough is enough with the company and starts looking for work in other places. She gets accepted around the time that the Jaguar account has been landed. She puts in her two weeks, but Don lets her go immediately. Despite doing her deed, Joan feels cheated by having to sell herself in order to help the company.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Elisabeth Moss
Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss)

It is hard to say goodbye to Peggy for a lot of reasons. For starters, she has grown a lot in the past five seasons in ways that none of the other characters have. Don only thinks he has while everyone else is dealing with office drama. Peggy may have to deal with a lot of affairs, but she is ready to move on to something else. It is tragic because she was the entry point to the series in season one and here we see her finally get burned out on her job. What does a life away from Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce hold for her? It's uncertain, but considering that she has had some wild experiences in the past season, I can only assume that they're going to be great. Still, to see her evolve from a naive new girl to confidently quitting with Don's reluctant approval is nerve shattering and leaves plenty to wonder where the series will go from here. It all seems so futile to sell yourself for something so immaterial. Peggy got it and Joan is sadly trapped in it. Still, it's great to see someone break away.

Jon Hamm
Best Scene

It is a moment that has actually been building for awhile. Yet, there's still the power behind it that makes the simplicity work. When Peggy approaches Don to turn in her two weeks, there's that sense of desperation in Don. He'll throw any money at her. Not literally like earlier in the episode, but financially. He can't see the company work without her. Still, in an episode where everyone is questioning the worth of selling out to Jaguar, it is a moment that feels earned. Don wants her to stay only to realize that she is serious. His desperation falls away and eventually becomes gratitude for the time she has served. Both are grateful for their services and it is sad to see them part, even if they have been working on different projects for most of the past few years. It's like a father saying farewell to his daughter. The strained voice saying "Don't be a stranger" that ends the conversation encapsulates everything about this moment that is powerful. We'll miss you, Peggy. Here's hoping that everything works out.

UP NEXT: "Commissions and Fees"

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