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6-3: "Collaborators" 2013.04.14


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#631

Luciaphile

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Posted Apr 19, 2013 @ 7:14 PM

Modern pregnancy tests came into common use in the 1960's. Even if Megan used one, though, I'm not sure how long it would take to get the results.


Right, but she still would have had to go to a doctor. It's not like she could have walked to the corner drugstore, bought a test, and then peed on a stick to get the results. She was probably late. Panicked. Had the miscarriage. Felt relief and then guilt. Even if she'd gone to a doctor, as others have stated, she might have been way too early in the pregnancy for them to do the test to begin with.

#632

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Posted Apr 19, 2013 @ 8:50 PM

She said she went to a doctor. So either the doctor told her it was 6 weeks and then she had a miscarriage or she had a miscarriage and went to the doctor to check if that's what it was and counted back herself.

#633

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Posted Apr 20, 2013 @ 12:25 AM

Quote

I thought this too! I've never had a kid, but at 2 weeks, it seems awfully early to miscarry, it seems just as easy to think that she found out and had an abortion.

I think Megan said she was six weeks along, not two.


Wow - this was my bad, where in the world did I get two weeks from??

#634

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Posted Apr 20, 2013 @ 8:54 AM

It's customary to count the length of a pregnancy from the last period, so six weeeks pregnant could well mean just two weeks since her last missed period. At any rate, I think it's been pretty well-established that it was early, too early for Megan to have gotten confirmation and procured an abortion. There is no reason, IMO, not to take her conversation with Sylvia at face-value. Megan had a miscarriage and felt guilty about her relief that nature had solved her problem for her.

#635

Dev F

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 2:26 AM

I can't believe I didn't notice until Couch Baron's recap pointed it out that the first flashback scene explicitly identified Uncle Mack as "the one that brung you." I feel like this casts Don's later comment that "Sometimes you gotta dance with the one that brung you" in a very different light.

Originally I was imagining that, like others have suggested, it represented Don's attempt to cling to some pretense of fidelity. That is, Don was insisting that their conversation with Ketchup remain purely for show, the same way that his affair needed to exist only in his and Sylvia's heads, lest he blow up an existing relationship that's still very valuable to him. In that sense, dancing with the one that brung you means you hold back something out of loyalty to the person you're supposed to be with.

But if Don used the phrase while thinking of Mack as the one that brung his stepmother then forced her to sleep with him despite the fact that he was "with" her sister, then it's not about loyalty or fidelity at all. Indeed, it's about betraying one's family and one's long-held beliefs for the sake of a much baser obligation. And, really, that's not unlike what Raymond is asking them to do, in his own pathetic way. It's not like with Mohawk in season 2, where Don had to completely throw them over for a shot at American Airlines (and thus it was a clear-cut metaphor for marital infidelity). Here, SCDP could have it all, Ketchup and Beans, were it not for Raymond's completely unreasonable demand that they string Timmy along and betray their own best interests instead.

What does that say about the personal story that the work tale is meant to analogize? If it isn't as clear-cut as "Megan is the one that brung Don, so he should be faithful to her," then who brung who? Maybe Don is sympathetic to Raymond's pathetic plea because he sees himself as the guy who's afraid of losing his girl to someone else -- to an acting career that will take children out of the picture and render him superfluous as a provider? Thus, just like with Sylvia, he's trying to recreate in the office what he no longer has at home: a scenario in which you're grateful to your "man" for being there for you when you were at your lowest, and you don't need to be snag the Heinz Ketchup account or be a soap opera star to feel content and complete. I'm the guy that brung you, Megan, so why can't that be enough?

Edited by Dev F, Apr 21, 2013 @ 2:31 AM.


#636

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 5:29 AM

Don has 3 kids already, I don't think he's at all desperate for any more. When he had the gorgeous wife and kids at home, he wasn't happy, I don't think he's looking to recreate that charade with Megan.

#637

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 8:00 AM

Well, not now, at least. After last season's dinner party in Cos Cob, he drunkenly suggested to Megan that they start a family. So at one time, at least, part of Don wanted another baby. I doubt he'd be so keen right now.

#638

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 8:09 AM

I like your analysis, Dev F. The only thing I disagree with, if I read you right, is that Don DID mean that sometimes we need to be faithful to those we are with. I don't think he's consciously invoking the memory of his Uncle Mack and all that comes with it. SUBconsciously, yes. We'll probably see more in flashbacks of what Don has learned from him, but I don't believe he's intentionally advocating living life like Uncle Mack did.

#639

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 8:14 AM

Well, not now, at least. After last season's dinner party in Cos Cob, he drunkenly suggested to Megan that they start a family. So at one time, at least, part of Don wanted another baby. I doubt he'd be so keen right now.


He also mentioned to Roger at some point (the episode where Megan quit, I think) that he suggested a baby on their honeymoon. But he was in the Lavendar haze both times. Having a baby now might lean towards his attitude when Gene was born. "Conceived in desperation and born into a mess". Not that bad of course, but certainly not ideal. Based on his reaction to Megan's miscarriage news and his " i want what you want" reply, I don't think he really wants another kid.

#640

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 9:24 AM

The only thing I disagree with, if I read you right, is that Don DID mean that sometimes we need to be faithful to those we are with. I don't think he's consciously invoking the memory of his Uncle Mack and all that comes with it. SUBconsciously, yes. We'll probably see more in flashbacks of what Don has learned from him, but I don't believe he's intentionally advocating living life like Uncle Mack did.

Oh, I'm definitely talking about a subconscious connection rather than a conscious one. Or, rather, I think he only makes the conscious connection at the very end of the episode -- oh, right, that would make me the kind of man whom women only love because I pay them -- which is why he ends up slumped on the floor outside his apartment, too ashamed to enter.

And the turning point, I think, is Don's encounter with Herb. He's the second client of the week who's making unreasonable demands on SCDP, but unlike the timid Raymond, he's so crass about it that he breaches that invisible line of respectability keeping the truth at bay. (Which is exactly the role he served last season, as well; he's not the first client with whom Joan traded on her sexuality for the sake of the business, but he's the first one who was so tacky as to come right out and make it a quid pro quo.) Don realizes this, and mirrors Herb's crassness in the strategy meeting to blow up his stupid idea. But it only forces him to realize the ways in which he himself is still a sleazy used car salesman.

He also mentioned to Roger at some point (the episode where Megan quit, I think) that he suggested a baby on their honeymoon. But he was in the Lavendar haze both times. Having a baby now might lean towards his attitude when Gene was born. "Conceived in desperation and born into a mess". Not that bad of course, but certainly not ideal. Based on his reaction to Megan's miscarriage news and his " i want what you want" reply, I don't think he really wants another kid.

I think that's only because he knows that Megan doesn't actually want kids. It's another invisible line he can't cross without blowing things up -- if he says, "Yeah, let's go for it!" he puts Megan in the position of having to shoot him down again. But considering that he's being drawn to Sylvia, the doting mother who takes all her husband's money and sends it to their son, I think he'd be perfectly happy if Megan were in the same position -- pregnant and dependent on him to provide for her, since it's the only way he can be sure he has value to her.

It would only be a mess if Megan were pregnant and didn't actually want to be. But if she did want to have a baby instead of a career, they wouldn't be "drifting apart" in the first place.

#641

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 9:32 AM

But if she did want to have a baby instead of a career, they wouldn't be "drifting apart" in the first place.


There's no way of knowing that. It certainly didn't keep him faithful to Betty.

#642

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 10:01 AM

There's no way of knowing that. It certainly didn't keep him faithful to Betty.

I didn't mean that he would necessarily remain faithful to her forever, just that they wouldn't be "drifting apart" in the way they are now, since Megan's desire for a career separate from her husband's is what soured Don on the arrangement in the first place.

#643

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 10:13 AM

I didn't mean that he would necessarily remain faithful to her forever, just that they wouldn't be "drifting apart" in the way they are now, since Megan's desire for a career separate from her husband's is what soured Don on the arrangement in the first place.


I am really not sure that is what soured him. I think that was the straw that broke the camel's back after an entire season of seeing that they really didn't know each other or belong together at all. Throwing the party that was so not Don, disliking orange sherbert, not wanting to be an ad exec, not being quite as maternal as he thought (through no fault of her own but she is young and treated Sally more like a little sister), coming with her own baggage in the form of her messed up parents (not quite a totally fresh start for him).

I really don't think it was just Don being angry that she wasn't subservient to him. When she wanted to quit SCDP he said he acknowledged it was awkward and suggested going to a different agency and was eager to put in some calls. He seems as though he would have been happy if she had just stayed in the business even if it wasn't at his firm. And he was more than happy to make calls on her behalf in that instance. He did want her to have a career. I think he wanted her to be all of the women in his life combined. The brains and passion for the advertising world of Peggy, the maternal instincts of an idealized Betty, and the sexual partner of his many mistresses. But on top of that be a completely fresh new start. She couldn't live up to that, of course, no one could. And then she took a step to have a separate world.

So, I think they were "drifting apart, long before that and, really, it was a relatively minor thing in the grand scheme. He had already been willing to pull strings for her (in a different career), she had already rejected advertising, he had already seemed content with having no baby (he didn't seem to upset when he talked about it to Roger) etc. That was just the thing that cemented it all.


So, I don't think having a baby would have changed much except a slight delay. To my eyes they were drifting apart from the second of her party for Don and it was cemented with orange sherbert (subconsciously). And everything else was just fighting the inevitable

Edited by Cherith, Apr 21, 2013 @ 10:16 AM.


#644

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 12:30 PM

He seems as though he would have been happy if she had just stayed in the business even if it wasn't at his firm. And he was more than happy to make calls on her behalf in that instance. He did want her to have a career. I think he wanted her to be all of the women in his life combined. The brains and passion for the advertising world of Peggy, the maternal instincts of an idealized Betty, and the sexual partner of his many mistresses. But on top of that be a completely fresh new start. She couldn't live up to that, of course, no one could. And then she took a step to have a separate world.


Excellent observation. And it ties in with Don's deep seated neurosis of being worthless at his core, of having to pay and be paid for companionship, relationships as a series of transactions. He keeps thinking that with the "right" woman he'll become whole, not "have" to cheat, be contented, etc. But since the right woman doesn't exist, he keeps getting stuck (as he sees it) with real women, women with problems, with scars, with pasts and baggage. It keeps ending up in the hallway of a whorehouse, being told he's a dirty little spy.

#645

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 4:36 PM

I do think Don likes babies a lot, just for their own sake. He was the first one to want to look at Tammy at Pete and Trudy's party. He held baby Gene and told Sally that we didn't know who he was going to be and that was a good thing. So as a man who likes the beginning of things and doesn't stress too much about the college expenses down the road, I would guess he wanted to have a baby more than Megan does right now.

The part I couldn't understand is why two such articulate people would have been married this long and not talked about having children many times. Megan skirting the issue with Don and using coy phrases like, "I don't even know if we're ready to have this conversation," sure didn't sound like the couple I know.

#646

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 5:16 PM

I agree. Don loves babies. Just like he loves fresh woman to project himself onto. I just think he gets tired of both as time goes on. He like Sally a lot but only for brief periods of time. Even when he has them he hands them off to the closest woman as soon as possible. He loves his kids he just doesn't feel the need to be too involved too often. Even with his favorite.

He can be a very caring, doting, attentative man. But he only likes the beginning of things.

The part I couldn't understand is why two such articulate people would have been married this long and not talked about having children many times. Megan skirting the issue with Don and using coy phrases like, "I don't even know if we're ready to have this conversation," sure didn't sound like the couple I know.


Is Don articulate though? He is great at spinning words that charm you or convince you. But I don't know that I have often seen him be great at real conversations where he has to listen to another's person words and respond to them. I am not saying it never happens. It has with Anna, towards the end with Betty, occassionally with Peggy, Joan. But those seem like individual exceptions not his MO.

I am also not sure he knows what he wants. The idea of having a baby probably excites the part of him who still believs in fresh starts. And terrifies that part of him that is checking out of the marraige.

Edited by Cherith, Apr 21, 2013 @ 5:36 PM.


#647

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 5:24 PM

I agree. Don loves babies. Just like he loves fresh woman to project himself onto. I just think he gets tired of both as time goes on. He like Sally a lot but only for brief periods of time. Even when he has them he hands them off to the closest woman as soon as possible.


And the main reason he has a close relationship with Sally is that Sally demands it. She was furious about him going away starting from when she was very young, blamed Betty for him disappearing and the divorce, ran away to see him in the city and just aggressively asserts herself into his life whenever she can. Gene and Bobby don't seem to feel the need to do that, so they seem like non-entities.

#648

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 6:22 PM

About the pale pink/white lipstick Peggy's secretary was wearing. In the days before Cover Girl Queen and Black Up, there was just Cover Girl and Maybelline. All those cosmetics were designed for fair, blue-eyed, blonde women -- or at least those who wanted to be. My mother was very fair, blue-eyed and blonde, and she looked smashing in that lipstick with her dark mascara. It was all about the eyes, and it went well with big headbands and those trapeze dresses everyone was wearing.

I really think in having the secretary wear that shade, the writers were saying that women of color had few or no choices to complement their (beautiful!) skin tones, and that they too were buying into the gimmicks that Madison Avenue was peddling. Ironic much?

#649

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 6:31 PM

I can see where Megan would have just blown off Don's talk about it in a "yeah, yeah, there's time for that" kind of way. Then she has the miscarriage and realizes that a successful pregnancy is not guaranteed (i.e., even if she wants to give Don a baby she may not be able to) and/or that pregnancy can seriously alter her life in a way that never was real to her before she actually got pregnant. Don doesn't need any more kids because he's a crappy father to the ones he has already but I doubt he would ever admit that; it's just easier to say "I want what you want" when it's fairly obvious that Megan isn't chomping at the bit to try again. It's also probably just another way for Don to feel sorry for himself and justify his affair--"she doesn't even want my baby."

#650

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 6:50 PM

IMO Megan is not particularly articulate either.

#651

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Posted Apr 21, 2013 @ 7:24 PM

I am really not sure that is what soured him. I think that was the straw that broke the camel's back after an entire season of seeing that they really didn't know each other or belong together at all. Throwing the party that was so not Don, disliking orange sherbert, not wanting to be an ad exec, not being quite as maternal as he thought (through no fault of her own but she is young and treated Sally more like a little sister), coming with her own baggage in the form of her messed up parents (not quite a totally fresh start for him).

I really don't think it was just Don being angry that she wasn't subservient to him.

Oh, I agree that it wasn't about subservience. Don recognized that he couldn't control Megan's life without making her as miserable as Betty, and he made it clear to Roger that he wanted to avoid that at all costs. Instead, I think it was about Don's need to feel needed, and his fear that if Megan succeeds without him, he'll be left all alone.

And while I don't think Megan deciding that she didn't want children was enough to make Don feel like he was losing her in and of itself, I do suspect that if Megan had wanted children, it might've been enough to reassure Don that he wasn't losing her. After all, the presumption that Megan would be a better mother than Betty (she cleans up milkshakes and doesn't even freak out!) was one of the main things that drew Don to her in the first place.

#652

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Posted Apr 22, 2013 @ 1:58 PM

I loved watching Trudy tell Pete that he is owned by her. Alison Brie is freaking awesome. Just watched Community, and now saw this. Now I want to see Trudy take on Jeff...


Really, really late in posting this, but in my mind Annie's Bubie is Trudy.