Monday, March 26, 2012

Mad Men 5x1: A Bold Bean Ballet

This season started like a squillion months late, but here we are! As usual, I'll be rating new episodes of Mad Men based not on the quality of the show -- which tends to be uniformly high --  but on how suicidal it makes the viewer.

Using a scale of 1 to 5 razor blades, I'll discuss the most depressing aspects of the program. It doesn't help that the show airs late-ish on Sunday nights, when most of us are already quivering wrecks of dread anticipating the work week ahead of us.

However, last night's two-hour season premiere really wasn't particularly depressing.

I mean, black protestors getting hit with water bombs from an office building was certainly depressing; a wrecked, exhausted-looking Joan fighting with her mother was depressing; and Pryce's lack of respect toward his black cab driver was uber depressing; but Crane describing what he'd do to Zou Bisou Bisou was more funny than depressing (though not from Megan's perspective I guess). In fact the entire episode was more funny than anything else.


1) Roger Sterling: "Why don't you sing like that?"
Jane Sterling: "Why don't you look like him?"

2) Everyone playing a frantic round of Pass the Baby when Joan stopped by

3) Pete's power play against Roger that sent Roger to the Staten Island Ferry at 6 am

4) All the partners squished on the couch in Pete's office (where they couldn't even smoke to deal with the situation!)

5) Megan summing up the rest of the cast with this reasonably astute assessment: "They don't smile; they smirk."

6) Pryce has what amounts to phone sex with Dolores, of the lost wallet; and Don and Megan play a kinda weird "you can't look at me while I clean in my underthings" sex game.

So all in all, 2 razor blades out of 5. Which is probably for the best, because with a double episode you really don't want more than a 3 rating. Still, I was a tad disappointed that no one got drunker at the surprise party. This is Mad Men, after all. I was probably drunker than any of the characters, and I was only sipping wine.

Question: was the wallet owner supposed to be a mobster?


  1. I was depressed because Caroline said "really?" to Roger when he was badgering her about who was on the phone - no one said "really?" in that context in 1965. Also, Joan's snarky "And how'd that work out for you?" was a total Dr. Phil-ism. Grrr.

    What happened to Matthew Weiner's vaunted attention to detail?

  2. Oh my gosh, this cracked me up! I've never seen the show, so I can't relate to the razor blades. But now I want to watch it!

  3. Mad Men is one of my post-surgery catch up targets. I love it when I can watch a whole season without having to wait between episodes. Funny post.