I love Mad Men and watch it religiously (then again, religion ain’t got nothin’ to do with it!) every Sunday night.
But in “Beautiful Girls” episode 49, there seemed to be a ‘discrepancy’ (out of character) with how Joan reacted to being robbed.
Episode 49 starts with an advertisement for Clorox showing a white shirt with bright red lipstick on the collar. The voice over says: “Getting ad guys out of hot water for generations.”
After seeing “Beautiful Girls” I thought one container of Clorox wouldn’t do the trick, but they’d need a whole truck load of Clorox to clean up last night’s dirty laundry.
But enough of Clorox’s cleaning power, on to my problem with (one) of the Beautiful Girls.
Joanie, the sexy office manager with pen around neck
I understand that Joanie and Roger have a history, and she is the only person that he can really trust. But the woman is married to Greg who is about to go to Viet Nam, and yet she ends up in an out of character (yes, even for Joan) sex scene with Roger in a ‘bad part’ of town.
Joan and Roger are walking back from the restaurant when they’re confronted by a Negro (parlance of the times) brandishing a gun. The street thug takes Roger’s watch and wallet, Joan’s purse and even her wedding ring.
Joan is understandably scared, and Roger consoles her by saying, “Everything can be replaced, you’re fine.” He then ‘proves it’ by kissing her.
Before you can say ‘can you dig it?” Joan is all hot and bothered and says to Roger, “Don’t stop.”
He backs her up under a staircase, and they make Mad Men style love. (That is to say, the kind of love that can be described with a four letter word that begins with F.)
(Hey, Roger be sure and give that shirt the once over with Clorox before wearing it again.)
Roger doesn’t stop, (well, what’s a hot-blooded, womanizing, senior partner gonna do?) and they proceed to make mad love a few feet away from the spot where they were ‘violated’ in a different way.
Say, what? given the circumstances, I would guess that even super tough Joan Holloway office manager extraordaire (albeit unappreciated by the Sterling agency) would have a few more things on her mind that a ‘quickie’ with Roger.
What if the guy comes back and tries to kill us? How can I tell Greg that I gave my wedding ring to a thug in New York when I was returning from a ‘date’ with Roger?
Greg already hates Roger and knows that I was sexually involved with him. He’ll probably do something awful like doing AWOL or get killed in Viet Nam, and it’ll be all my fault.
And what about the contents of my purse? It had my new Bank of America credit card, lunch money, and the Elizabeth Arden powder compact and lipstick that I purchased last week on my lunch break—how am I going to replace all that?
Baring musing like that, Joan might at least consider leaving the place where the crime occurred, but oh no, she’s ready to ‘get it on’ right then and there.
In spite of the inappropriate response ‘glitch’ of episode 49, Mad Men is one of the best series to come down the pike in a long time!
Matthew Weiner, she show’s creator, along with Cinematographer, Phil Abraham,
Don Bishop, (who developed the visual style) and Alan Taylor (veteran director of “The Sopranos) have all contributed in creating a brilliant television series.
God (and Matthew Weiner) is in the details
Case in point: the ending in “Beautiful Girls”— the work day is done and Fay and Joan get on the elevator, but before they descend, Peggy calls out, and Joan holds the door for her.
We have brief tableaux of the women standing in the elevator, Joan is looking slightly to her left, Peggy stares straight ahead and Faye looks lost.
The expressions on their faces are of women trapped in time.
The elevator door closes on three women who inhabit a place where they must play key roles in an unkind and sometimes hostile male-dominated world.