Mad Men
Man With A Plan

Episode Report Card
Couch Baron: C | 11 USERS: C+
YOU GRADE IT
Mergers And Yak-Quisitions

As some furniture is moved, there's a crowd gathered at the base of the internal stairs, and Joan is giving out office assignments. When Moira, who I think is the CGC counterpart to Meredith, if not quite that stupid, protests that having all the Creatives in one room will be crowded, Joan fires back with a brittle smile, "But that may change soon!' Don't think this isn't lost on the huddled masses here. Moira bothers Joan for a bit, but then Ted and Peggy appear, and Joan's happy enough to greet the former but positively delighted to see the latter. Joan then escapes the officious Moira by taking the opportunity to escort Peggy to her office, which is Harry's (and Pete's before him) old one, as it happens. She does caution Peggy she'll have to share it, but Peggy's fine with that as long as she has Phyllis to herself, and we've seen Peggy with Phyllis enough to know this represents actual affection rather than any "don't touch my stuff" mentality.

Joan gets a pain in her side, which looks quite sharp, but she waves it off. They get to the door, which is missing the new nameplate but helpfully has a handwritten sign on it that reads "Peggy Olson, Coffee Chief." Gender politics aside, hee. After Peggy enters, she asks after Joan's son, and Joan playfully replies, "He's the man in my life." I kind of predicted this? Joan in turn asks about Abe, and Peggy babbles that they bought a building together, which I was kind of wondering about last week -- Peggy's "I want her out" line did suggest she might be a landlord -- but now it's completely clear. Joan smiles very warmly and tells Peggy she's glad she's there, and Peggy returns the sentiment. Joan then gets back to work, leaving Peggy to regard her office, which is, as you'll recall, smaller than the one she was in at CGC, even if you don't count the support beam right in the middle of it. On the plus side, it'll function as a natural divider.

Don comes in through all the chaos and looks in to see the partners assembled in the conference room; somehow, Dawn is nowhere to be found. He starts to remove his coat...

...while inside, Bertram is reading from, I guess, an announcement to the staff he or someone else has prepared, which talks about the merger and the CGC performance at the Clio Awards and whatever, and (a) it's not finished and (b) there's no new name yet, apparently, so I'm with Joan when she suggests that they wait until they're done with the personnel changes, even if what she means is "no need to force the walking dead to listen to this drivel." Pete then enters and apologizes, explaining that someone commandeered his secretary; he then discovers that there's no chair for him, which is a nicely unsubtle warm-up for all the ham-fisted metaphors in the episode. Roger can't resist pointing out that Don took the last seat. "And that means you were here after Don!" Heh. Don smiles approvingly at the legendary status his tardiness has achieved because he is an asshole, and then Moira thankfully offers her seat, which is nice but are we SO ENAMORED of this metaphor that no one can step out and get another chair from somewhere? Did no one take a count of the partners before the meeting? Anyway, Ted belays that, getting up instead for Moira while he plunks himself down on the sideboard, and from the way Don looks at him like he has two heads, of course we're to imagine that this is Ted being the Man of the People to Don's aloof boss. I've seen it on series that last this long before; when the seams start to show, you often can't unsee them.

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Mad Men

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