Mad Men Live Blog: Season 6, Episode 6 — “For Immediate Release”

May 12, 5:52pm: Wow, can you believe what Peggy did? I would find it plausible, but then again, I would find anything plausible, since I haven't watched Mad Men Episode 606 yet. I have heard rumors, though, of another loss in character continuity. Characters can evolve, but not like Peggy's apparently done. Writers these days…

Anyway, I had to take the weekend of May 5 off for a post-wedding minimoon. To prepare for Episode 607 tonight, I'm running through the On Demand version of Mad Men Episode 606 from May 5. This version conveniently has few commercials (though that might run counter to the raison d'etre of our parent blog). Perhaps the entire thing is a big commercial for Banana Republic ties. I now have several following the minimoon. When you write a Mad Men live blog, people have a narrow perspective on your taste in ties. Pun.

My timestamps here are in minutes from the start of the show. Here we go!

0': The On Demand screen basically points right to Mad Men. And to Mayweather-Guerrero replays. The outcome of both seems preordained.

1': Don to the doctor in the episode's preamble: "Say you're going to be the first American to successfully complete a heart transplant." But Don Draper has no heart!

2': The SCDP partnership crew is ready to IPO! A venture capitalist compliments Joan on her excellent book-keeping, though he uses a word ("chef") that would imply cooking the books.

3': Pete to Joan: "Everyone wants you." This is completely unrelated to anything except to Pete feeling alone and sad, which has been the case since Season 1. Characters evolve.

4': Pete indicates that Joan's portion of SCDP will be worth about $1 million, which is $6.7 million in 2013 dollars. Assuming Joan owns 5 percent of SCDP, that puts the company's valuation at $134 million in 2013 dollars, which seems like a miracle given that they were nearly broke a couple seasons ago. Companies evolve.

5': Roger Sterling is in bed with a young blonde woman doubling as a spy for SCDP. She is a flight attendant, and she's clearly capable of doing better than Roger, but apparently SCDP pays better than Northwest Air.

6': Pete is back with Trudy in the 203. Trudy is coy but somewhat warmer to Pete than in weeks past.

7': It's Mother's Day on the show. This seems relevant.

8': We're at the Draper apartment. Julia Ormond is there for Mother's Day, and she offers the doctor flowers from Megan as a re-gift from his son. It's complicated and unnecessary, just like Hallmark holidays.

9': Peggy and Abe are at their horrible apartment, which is horrible. There's human excrement on the stairs.

10': Back at work. Roger indicates that there's a potentially fatal issue in SCDP's relationship with Jaguar, and that Don, Megan, and Julia Ormond are all required to attend a dinner with the Jaguar man and his wife. As a side note, Julia Ormond's character in Sabrina was terribly naive.

11': Someone at Ted Chaough's agency has pancreatic cancer. This is relevant only because Ted Chaough may go out of business if the cancer man cashes out his share of the agency. The cancer man has a silly ascot thing going on.

12': Roger's flight attendant spy gives him a hot tip about something that happened while I was getting a ginger ale. I expect her to last one episode, max.

13': Megan and Julia Ormond are in the elevator and Megan is recognized because she's a HUGE star. How many people in 1968 have televisions? I feel like I should know that.

14': Roger is at the airport with the flight attendant spy. Roger asks for a glass of water that looks like a drink, while he loads up a prospective client (maybe Chevrolet, Chaough's big new target) with a bunch of Jim Beam.

15': Commercial break! Two commercials in On Demand streams — I'm OK with that.

16': Back to Mad Men. Megan complains to Julia Ormond that Don is distant, so Julia Ormond encourages her to dress provocatively. 1968 sure was different.

17': Herb (the Jaguar lady) and his wife are meeting Don, Megan, and Julia Ormond for the Jaguar dinner. I dunno. This is probably relevant somewhere. Julia Ormond is about to curse at her in French.

18': Bert Cooper comes into Pete's office and congratulates him for getting SCDP into IPO shape. The company's going to go for $11/share, which is higher than the $9/share that was discussed earlier. 

20': The Jaguar guy stares at Megan lasciviously. After the ladies leave, the Jaguar guy asks Don to consider help from someone at his dealership. Don decides to fight the guy verbally because of residual Joan anger. Don is self-destructing all over the place because characters evolve.

22': Don is back at his apartment after hating all over the Jaguar guy, so now he's going to hate all over Megan. 

23': Roger calls the Drapers and Julia Ormond picks up and yells at Roger, but doesn't tell him the extremely important news that Jaguar is done.

24': In a related cutaway, Pete and the Wharton MBA are at a brothel. Pete runs into his father-in-law. 1968 sure was different, and full of disease.

26': Pete asks Ken Cosgrove what he should do about catching his father-in-law at a brothel. This also implies that Pete's father-in-law caught Pete at the brother. Ken Cosgrove then has some uncomfortable discussion with Pete about adult content.

27': Pete to Don: "DRAPER! What in the hell have you…" Pete then falls down the stairs.

28': Pete leaks to the company that they were considering an IPO. This stuns the office, and probably will stun the SEC.

29': Roger Sterling comes into the office and says that Chevy's going to consider SCDP for a pitch on Friday. And Roger has a contract for $10,000 to build the pitch.

30': Joan to Don: "Just once, I'd like to hear you use the word 'we.' Because we're all rooting for you from the sidelines." Joan is not good at dramatic dialogue.

32': Peggy is at her office and sees Ted Chaough on the floor, trying to get reception on his TV. Ted is also drunk.

32': Ted to Peggy: "It's one thing to want something. It's another thing to need it." Poetic and drunk, just like Don Jr.

33': Peggy is about to make out with Ted, right?

33': Yep, Peggy and Ted kiss. Ted says to Peggy: "I'm sorry. I'm just grateful." This is what all women want to hear.

34': Broken City and Jack Reacher are both advertised now on the On Demand stream. As Jack Reacher, Tom Cruise would barely come up to Don's shoulders.

35': The doctor is upset about a patient of his dying before he gets to do the heart transplant. The doctor: "Fate hasn't chosen me." Unfortunately, baldness has chosen him.

36': Don comes home to shower, and of course Megan distracts him in the same way that she became Mrs. Draper.

37': Roger and Don are at the airport, presumably waiting to fly to Detroit. Another agency is waiting with them to fly to Detroit, and lets them know that Vicks is dropping SCDP. Back story: Pete's father-in-law is the lead at Vicks on the SCDP account.  

39': Pete's father-in-law to Pete, after he comes to Vicks enraged: "Either walk out like a man, or I can have you thrown out like the lowlife you are." Pete is somehow surprised that his father-in-law would take offense to his son-in-law at a brothel.

41': Here's a weird scene with Peggy dreaming of making out with Ted Chaough. Back story: Abe just painted the apartment, so Peggy is high on paint fumes.

42': We're in Detroit. Ted Chaough sees Don Draper at a hotel bar and immediately believes that both his agency and SCDP are dead in the water. Ted is a combined Bert Cooper and Don Draper — he knows the business and knows the creative. 

43': Ted Chaough's probably going to merge with SCDP. Or under SCDP.

44': Ted's doing his pitch to Don, then Don does his pitch to Ted. Ted's is Americana, and Don's is another one of these pitches where he doesn't want to show the product initially. It's insane. Don keeps on pitching nothing.

46': Don proposes that Ted and Don merges their pitches. Because OF COURSE these long-time rivals would partner together, because characters evolve. I feel like singing some Tag Team.

47': Ted's partner at GM, meeting Don and Roger: "Unless this works, I'm against it." 

48': Back in Connecticut. Pete has surprised Trudy at home. Pete tells Trudy that her father visited a brothel, which is an odd way to win back Trudy's heart and the Vicks business.

49': Back at Peggy's office. Peggy primps before having a late-night meeting with Ted, because she is not at all who she used to be.

50': Don is in Ted's office! Don and Ted have merged! Peggy is a copy chief at one of the top ad agencies in New York! 

50': All Peggy wants is Ted's love. All Ted wants is a name for the merged agency. I really don't know why she's so depressed about this.

51': Peggy writes a press release, and fade to black. The agency's new name will be Deus Ex Machina, LLC.

52': No, not really.

Final score: Trudy wins the night! She gets to tell Pete to leave forever and she's still rich because her father's rich. As long as Community remains on the air, Alison Brie also wins because she'll still have a weekly show. It's a quick end to SCDP and the Chaough clan, though maybe Peggy can give Ted a new last name as part of the agency rebranding.

So, as a result of the Chevy deal, Don's and Ted's agencies need to merge. Realistic? Who knows? All that matters is that the Mad Men writers wanted Don and Peggy back together for their inevitable hook-up, followed by Don's Leaving Las Vegas turn. And we still have half the season to go? 

We're halfway home with Season 6. See you later tonight for Episode 607!