I've heard Mad Men described as "the best movie I see each week," or something to that effect. And it's true. The show, in all its exquisitely shot time period glory, carries all the weighted drama of a Best Picture contender. Beautiful costumes. Glamour. Gorgeous cast. Superb writing. And tension, tension, tension.
This past Sunday's Mad Men was one of the best episodes of the series by far. It's a pivotal episode--that episode where, from that point forward, everything changes, and there's no going back.
For example, that Grey's Anatomy two-parter where Meredith is holding a bomb in someone's chest? Pivotal. With that, Grey's established itself as the best show on TV, the one everyone talked about. Of course, now hardly anyone talks about it anymore, but that's beside the point.
Mad Men was pivotal this Sunday because finally, finally we saw Don Draper break down. And those ten minutes or so where he is explaining his past to Betty? Painful to watch, and yet I hung on his every word. The hardest part was watching him talk about how and why his brother killed himself. Poor Don. I think in that moment, Betty could see herself truly forgiving all his infidelities. Only in that moment, though. I'm sure when she finds out about him and the teacher, the sh*t will hit the fan again.
Also in the episode, the craziest thing happened: Don dropped a cigarette, he was so nervous. Don is the kind of guy who never drops anything. He is just too cool. In fact, he is the kind of guy who looks at you and makes you drop YOUR cigarette.
Another great moment in the episode came out of nowhere, as all the great moments on Mad Men are wont to do. Joan and her husband Dr. Rapist, I mean Greg, are arguing. Well, Dr. Rapist is arguing about how he can't get a break and how his life is crap because first he tried to be a surgeon but he failed at it and then he tried to be a psychiatrist and he changed his mind because that's not even a real science or something (ouch) and blah blah blah waa waa waa. We're all sick of his whining by this point. That "we" includes Joan.
So what does she do? She goes behind Dr. Rapist, picks up a vase, and BASHES IT OVER HIS HEAD.* Then she walks out the door. WOW. I officially love Joan.
Roger Sterling also had his own storyline this episode involving some woman from his past, but it was far outshadowed by Don and Betty and Joan. There are only two more eps of Mad Men this season, and I cannot wait to see how it ends.
*No, sadly, he didn't die. By the way, the actor, Sam Page, is slated to guest star on Greek, playing Rebecca's dad's colleague on Capitol Hill.