It’s Valentine’s Day and love is
in the air nowhere to be found. Actually, love can be found right on the desk of Shirley, Peggy’s secretary. Peggy mistakenly thinks the roses are hers and happily brings them into her office. Poor Shirley can’t seem to tell her that the flowers belong to her, not Peggy, and for the rest of the episode Peggy acts like a lunatic. She leaves cryptic messages for Ted, letting him know that she’s not willing to reignite their relationship. After a few comical miscommunications, Shirley finally tells her the truth. Peggy’s response is to sulk and act like a baby. This wasn’t her finest episode.
In other secretary business, Dawn is having a hard time of it. Don expects her to keep him in the loop on all business matters and she’s uncomfortable gathering information on the sly. She’s even less comfortable taking cash for it, but Don insists. To make her life/job even harder, she’s also the secretary for new creative director, Lou. And Lou is…how should I put this? Oh, right. Lou is an asshole. When Sally stops by to see Don, Lou goes into a rage and gets Dawn removed from his desk.
A few things to note here:
1. Sally’s in boarding school and is in the city with her friends to attend the funeral of her roommate’s mother. They orchestrate a shopping trip and Sally loses her purse somewhere. She doesn’t care so much about the purse or her money, but is sad to lose her address book as it holds all her contacts. I guess this is like losing your cell phone in today’s world.
2. Don didn’t tell Sally that he hasn’t been working. No surprise to us, since he didn’t even tell Megan. But Sally was certainly surprised to show up and find Lou in his office.
3. Dawn wasn’t around to manage Sally because she used her lunch break to buy perfume for Lou’s wife, but he berated her anyway. Again, Lou = Asshole.
Don’s been rotting at home, watching TV and drinking. Oh, this is so sad. How the mighty have fallen. It’s a relief when he starts taking meetings and warms up to the idea of working elsewhere. He’s not quite honest about his current situation, but the other agencies seem to know the score. When Sally comes looking for him at his apartment, they have a confrontation about his lack of honesty. He drives her back to school, thrilled to have something to do. He prolongs the journey by taking her to a diner and eventually breaks through her sullen teenage wall. My favorite moment is when he shocks her by suggesting they dine and dash. Oh, Don.
I really love how the relationship between Don and Sally has evolved. She’s honest about not wanting to go to his apartment for fear of running into Sylvia. And he’s honest about his shame over not working. They might have the healthiest relationship on the entire show.
Back to the secretaries: Joan moves Dawn to reception and the receptionist now works for Lou. But when ole’ racist Burt sees Dawn, he insists Joan move her elsewhere. He doesn’t want people to see an African American first thing when they walk through the door. Joan is appropriately horrified. And she’s tired of having to juggle secretaries all the time. (Even Peggy wants to get rid of Shirley over the roses.) When Jim realizes she has two jobs, he suggests a promotion to accounts and offers her a new office upstairs. Yeah, Joan! Looks like Dawn is the new office Joan. Yeah, Dawn!
But for every professional victory at the agency, there must be a regression. For balance, you see. This week’s disappointment falls to Pete, who busts his butt to land the local Chevy account. Southern California’s account is as large as their national dealings in Detroit and the partners bicker over how it should be handled. Only Roger has Pete’s back and in the end they decide Pete needs to default to Bob Benson. What an insult! Pete is angry and lashes out at the only person he can: Ted. He realizes this California position is a dead end.
And that’s it for this week. Still no Betty. Betty, where are you?!