“Mad Men” Season 4, Episode 6: “Waldorf Stories”

While Jon Hamm was losing his Emmy over at NBC, Don Draper was winning a CLIO over at AMC. There was an interesting award show parallel going on last night as “Mad Men” aired during the Emmys. Even though Hamm lost the Best Actor award, show creator Matthew Weiner (for writing) and the show itself (Best Drama) took home gold.

Don Draper’s (Hamm) television commercial CLIO award was basically what last night’s episode was centered around. SCDP took home the award and celebrating ensued. Don, as drunk as ever, took home a woman only to awaken two days later with another woman, an unattractive waitress, remembering nothing in between. He even missed picking up his kids.

It was kind of a moment of rock bottom for Don. And a moment of clarity for me. I realize he’s becoming Roger Sterling (John Slattery). He’s got his name on the building. His creativity is becoming outweighed by his drinking and irritability. He’s losing moments and days because of the lifestyle.

We’re shown this during a flashback of how Don met Roger. Roger was buying a fur from Don (for Joan no less) and Don saw an opportunity to try to get his advertising foot in the door. He slipped his portfolio in the box along with the fur then continued to harass Roger. Finally, over a drunken pre-lunch, Roger agrees to hire Don. When Don shows up at Sterling Cooper, Roger doesn’t remember any of it. Sounds familiar, no?

So unless Don makes some changes, he’s going to be a washed up rich man in an office who does nothing but drink all day. It won’t take much.

While I’m still talking about the bitter men of SCDP, I’ll mention that Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) throws his 20th tantrum of the season when he learns his rival Ken Cosgrove (Aaron Staton) is coming to work from SCDP (finally!).

Meanwhile, the far less sorry and pathetic ad woman, Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss), is clashing with the new creative director Stan (Jay R. Ferguson) to get a Vick’s campaign off the ground. He’s the typical male pig that SCDP loves to hire, so Peggy has a fight on her hands. But she’s learned to deal with Don, so she’s got it under control. When he refuses to work as he’s more interested in a Playboy magazine, Peggy strips down and insists they work in the nude. This gets his attention. As do her penis jokes. Peggy wins. Go Pegs!

I’d just like to congratulate “Mad Men” for winning Best Drama last night and thank them for giving us a week off from Betty (January Jones) and Sally Draper. After Sally’s uncomfortable storyline last week, I just needed some time.

(By the way, for those of you who don’t watch NBC dayime, that’s Jennifer Aniston’s dad John Aniston (Victor Kirakis, “Days of  our Lives”) presenting Don his award.)

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