Mad Men

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Couch Baron: A | 6 USERS: A+
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A Lucky Strike

The redheaded bombshell we know as Joan (Christina Hendricks) is showing Peggy around; she points out the area that the account executives and creative executives share. "Please don't ask me the difference." I'm going to have to steal that line. Joan, who's a lot less imperious here than she may or may not come to be, says that if Peggy follows her advice, she's be able to avoid a lot of mistakes she's made. And when Paul serendipitously passes and says hello to her, Joan adds, "Like that one." Heh. After some talk about how long it took Peggy to get there from where she lives, Joan says that if she makes the right moves, she'll be in the city with the rest of them in a couple of years, but if she really makes the right moves, she'll be in the country and not working at all. The part about "And if you fuck up, that's what Bensonhurst is for" is omitted, but advertising is all about accentuating the positive. Joan leads Peggy to an empty desk, saying that they'll be right across the aisle from each other, and will both be taking care of Don for a while. Do I even need to tell you to make your own joke here? Joan then ticks off the important points -- don't overdo it with the perfume, keep a fifth of something in your desk (Don's a rye drinker), and invest in some aspirin, Band-Aids, and a needle and thread. "He may act like he wants a secretary, but most of the time they're looking for something between a mother and a waitress." As for the rest of the time, Joan tells Peggy as she steps forward and regards her appraisingly, she should go home, cut some eyeholes in a paper bag, strip, and look at herself in the mirror. "Really evaluate where your strengths and weaknesses are." So Joan, a woman, is encouraging Peggy to take seemingly emotionally painful steps that will result in her getting sexually harassed more often. A little fucked up, don't you think? Joan encourages Peggy to be honest in her self-evaluation, and Peggy replies that she always tries to be honest. Joan smiles in apparent approval...

...and then she's telling Peggy not to be overwhelmed by the technology, as she uncovers an automatic typewriter. Hey, it may be antiquated now, but in junior high I took a typing class in which we learned on manual jobs, and I can tell you that any secretary that could churn out more than sixty words a minute on one of those clunkers deserved a medal. Although I would have been scared to shake her hand. Joan then says at lunch, Peggy needs to pick up some chocolates, carnations, and bath salts. "I'll explain later." I damn sure hope so. Peggy gratefully thanks Joan, who hesitates for a second, but then tells Peggy not to take this the wrong way, but "a girl like you with those darling little ankles? I'd find a way to make them sing." She adds that men love scarves (on women, I'm assuming she meant) and then Don and Roger (John Slattery) blow by as Joan greets them both warmly. Don does spare them a "Morning, girls," so at least he notices Peggy's existence, although whether he realizes she's new is another question entirely.

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Mad Men

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