N00bs on the Tube: Mad Men. Tomorrowland.
In an effort to cause a little chaos here at Character Grades, each week we're setting up one brave writer on a blind date with a very important episode… of a show they've never seen. They'll attempt to navigate the foreign story, understand the strange characters, and somehow emerge [relatively] unscathed.
Season 4: Episode 13: "Tomorrowland”
Here's what I know about Mad Men :
- I don't watch it, but everyone else does.
- It's about 1950s/60s guys who smoke cigs and hit on their secretaries.
- Christina Hendrick's boobs are involved.
- January Jones is apparently "great" in it, so I guess she plays a stick of wood.
- Jon Hamm isn't funny in it.
- Again, there's a lot of smoking.
- It's about advertising, so I'm imagining the movie Picture Perfect and people walking around with big things rolled up in tubes.
Let's find out what all the hype is about. Opening credits: A guy falls off a building. Is that a metaphor for middle age or a suicide mission? Maybe we'll know by the end of the ep.
The episode opens with cutie Jon Hamm all sleeping with one of those old quilts on the bed that reminds me of my grandma's house. Nice to know the art team has this show down pat. When he wakes up he asks a blondie who isn't his wife to put him out of his misery. He must be hungover. But then she gives him a pep talk and compares him to an ostrich by telling him he killed his pitch and needs to take his head out of the sand about the past. Who is this Obi Wan Kanobi/lover? I like her! Can I get her number?
She's not even pushy about calling, she's all, "Hey, go take your kids to California and I'll call you when you get back." So breezy. Love it, score one for Jon Hamm. (Secret, I can't remember his character's name, don't tell yourself.)
Holy shit, Christina Hendricks is the MAIL girl? Had no clue. Holy shit, Christina Hendricks has a baby voice. Had no clue. Well, she got some good news! She got a promotion! Hot damn, it's only a title change, no bump in pay for Tits Magee. Drat. Jon is in a Bloody Mary meeting. Yay, this is when the Picture Perfect stuff starts! Oh wait, his name is Don, right? Got it.
Don seems to be pitching something about lung cancer and smoking and maybe convincing kids not to smoke, I'm not 100% sure. Seems like one of the guys in this meeting is gay. Jon/Don starts into a massive pitch about a campaign that focuses on teenagers not wanting to die, and it seems SUPER depressing. I'd fire him for that. What a sad sack, amirite? Ooooh, SJP's old boyfriend who wanted to pee on her is here. Fantastic! His name is Roger. Neat.
Someone just made an "approach from the rear" comment. That makes sense. Now he just suggested a foursome with four dudes. For suresies gay. As soon as I find out his name, I'll tell you, but me thinks you already know who I'm talking about; the gay one.
Okay, I'm 6-minutes in. Is this really a good show? It seems awfully stuffy, boring, and the language is just as I expected, BORGANZA.
Now, we're at what I can only guess is Don's house. Carla seems nice. A fat kid shows up to talk to Sally. His name is Glenn. Oh, I think I like Glenn. He's all knocking on Sally's door saying, "Are you decent?" Pretty clever for a 10 year old. Or 12. Or a fat kid. Then he hugs her, demands a gift from Disneyland and leaves. Ooooo, January Jones hates this fat kid. She hates him hard. What could this fatty have possibly done? Knocked on the door and said, "Are you a terrible actor?" Uh oh, Betty just fired Carla, ouch. Not cool, Betty Draps. No wonder everyone hates you. 12-minute check. Guys, January Jones is NOT good in this.
Don is NOT happy that Carla has been let go, cause he can't handle diapers! OMG, Shoshona just got to the agency. I hope she does crack; that would be a cool twist. Ooooh, Someone's name is Pumpernickel -- that's cool. Oh fuck, her name is really Peggy Olsen. Boo. At least her father is President Bartlett. Uh oh, a sleezy dork just showed up. Sleezy dorks have to be the worst kind. Where do they get off? Seriously, where do they masturbate? Does anyone else feel like Shoosh is hitting on this chick she brought into the agency with the boofant, am I wrong? Yikes, Don's secretary has terrible teeth. Woof.
Peggy snags a client. Yay Pumpernickel! Yay feminism! Yay! Uh, just realized, this secretary is the person who does doobie Doobie zoobie doo, right? They are for surez getting married by the end of this episode.
While in Cali, Don has to sign something. He shows up at a house with "Dick and Anna '64" on the wall. WAIT, his name is DON, not Dick. Is his nickname Dick because he's a penis? Okay, now this chick is talking about someone's engagement ring from Don. But Don's right there. This is weird. I'm feeling my memory kicking in and there's something I'm JUST remembering about Mad Men and it's that somehow Don stole some dead soldier's life or something. Ugh. Talk about a dumb plot twist that I only know through watching TV and reading EW. Damn mine eyes and ears!
Non-Sally kid is a gas, he wants to get into the pool and be a shark, I like that.
Don is getting contemplative in the hotel. Probably about the Dick and Anna thing. But he's kind of a great dad, right? Hanging with the kids, being cute, deciding to go swimming... maybe I'm starting to get why peeps love this show.
Meanwhile back at the soon-to-be not-Draper house, someone named Henry is pissed that Betty fired Carla. Betty doesn't care, she wants a fresh start. Also, who the hell is Henry?
Okay, I'm def falling for Don--he's all drinking a beer and reading le Carré, what a cutie. Oh wait a second, here comes the misogyny... he's just swinging by secretary Megan's door. Fuck this chick's teeeth! They are INSANE. HOLY SHIT, she just said that her friend made fun of her teeth. She must be talking about me, right? Cool, I'm friends with buck-toothed Megan frenchie. Don just said, "I love your teeth." This is awesome, they are so self aware. And now they are making out. Flash to Betty being sad and alone and then directly back to Megan and Don post-coitus. Perfect editing, Mad Men.
Don moves fast. He's in love with Megan and is asking her to marry him. Um, CRAZY. And shady, son, you didn't even buy that ring. You stole that shit from Dick! And probably Anna.This seems awfully impulsive, sir. Betty is gonna be pissed off and Don is sorta psychotic. Thirty-two minute check in. The kids in this are terrific. Peggy is a God Damn doll. Don gets back to NYC and announces his engagement to his secretary, Seabiscuit. But when he tells one person, she seems real real weird about the engagement. Um, what's up with Peggy and Don? I need to know the backstory, ASAP.
Pumpernickel goes to wallow about Don's engagement in Tits Magee's office. Boobster is all, 'let's have a cig' (obvi, this is Mad Men). Peggy is pissed. Boobster is making good mail cart jokes. I like that. Uh oh, Don is calling the chick from the beginning of the ep. (I totally forgot about her and so did Don!) She is all business and is just like, "Fuck getting a coffee; shoot me straight." She is bullshit about Don being engaged. Fay (that's her name) is all like, "Are you going to put an ad in the New York Times saying you never liked me?" Um, that sounds dishy, sort of wish I'd seen that episode. Tits Magee is preggers. Oh boy. She just said that her boobs are getting bigger. This dude likes it. Is he insane? Do you even realize how big they are now? They will suffoacte you, sir!
Betty and Don meet awkwardly in the kitchen of their house and have some wine. Betty is cool as a cuke when Don tells her about getting engaged to Megan. Not surprised since if Betty was supposed to have an emotion, January Jones wouldn't be able to express it anyways. By the end of the episode it definitely seems like Don is getting a fresh, albeit totally insane, start with Megan. If I had to guess, I'd say this is Don's M.O., totally scrapping an old life and just starting completely new with a sort of lie, cause let's be real--there's no way he's really in love with Megan Seabiscuit McFrencherton. Meanwhile, Betty is told by that old Goat, Henry, that she absolutely cannot have a fresh start. Oy.
That seems unfair, but then again I don't know what kind of cray-town shenanigans Betty has pulled. I'm left feeling like instead of taking a trip to "Tomorrowland," I've taken a trip to Yesterdayland where women are treated crappy unless they are pretty with bad teeth.
What I know now about Mad Men:
- I don't like it but everyone else does.
- Christina Hendrick's boobs are involved.
- January Jones plays a stick of wood.
- Jon Hamm isn't funny in it but he is rather glorious.
- Peggy is AMAZING.
- I'm happy I never have to watch it again.
- People are going to hate me for hating it.
awful lot of effort you put in for a show you didn't like. lighten up. it's a good show.