Mad Men recap: Shall We Merge?

It's Mother's Day in 1968 and Matthew Weiner delivers another game-changer
Ep. 06 | Aired May 5, 2013

DRAPER? JUST MET HER Megan worries about not wearing pants.

Michael Yarish/AMC

Also in underpants is Pete Campbell, who slides into bed with Trudy and tries to awaken her with a little Mother's Day Surprise. Sorry, I just grossed myself out too. The fact that she's let him into the house means he's already making progress winning Trudy back, but she puts a stop to anything else. Pete, being Pete, explodes with, "So we'll maintain every other aspect of this marriage except the one that matters." Pretty rich considering what got Pete into this position in the first place. Pete smarms some more about whether it counts that he wants her and then makes an allusion to the fact that he's about to come into a whole lot of money soo. Trudy is, I'm afraid to report, visibly softening. Sigh.

Back in the city we see that Marie is at Maison Draper for Mother's Day which is excellent news if, like me, you like a slightly bitter, quippy parent around to liven things up. She's talking trash, in French, about her grandkids when Dr. Rosen shows up wearing a bathrobe and in a Mother's Day panic on behalf of his son. Rosen and Marie flirt mildly -- and when he departs she teases Don to keep an eye on the "handsome, talented" doctor and Megan. Me, Don and the entire Mad Men audience share a collective scoff at that one.

Across the park -- presumably on the Upper West Side as Abe suggested to Peggy they live in last week's episode -- Abe is rocking overalls and no shirt and trying to do some handyman work. Peggy arrives home to explain about the poop on the stairs, probably from their junkie tenant upstairs. This leads me to believe that she has bought an entire brownstone and I don't need my inflation calculator to know that this is a very good investment. But for now, Peggy seems a little freaked out about how much more shabby than chic her home is. Also that her handyman almost electrocutes himself in order to save money.

Back at the office Pete informs Don that Herb -- of the gross Joan prostitution Herbs -- has cancelled dinner, which Don deems to be a relief. Pete offers to have dinner with Don anyway -- an offer Don bats away almost reflexively. In his office he finds Roger, who asks if Pete told him that dinner with Jaguar was off. "Yes," says Don. "Unless it was the world's most boring dream." Oh shades-of-season-1-Don, I love you so. Roger informs him that dinner is still on with Herb, just without Pete involved. Roger suggests packing the dinner with spouses and visibly brightens when he hears Marie is in town.

Over at Peggy's  agency, Cutler Gleason and Chaough, a meeting is taking place with Ted Chaough, Jim Cutler (Harry Hamlin, holla!) and Frank Gleason. They're meeting about Chevrolet but Frank isn't having it, tired of the astronauts and despairing over their decision to resign from Alfa Romeo (with a sly reference to the car Dustin Hoffman drove in 1967's The Graduate, a movie I can only imagine Don went and saw four or five times.) But what Frank's really upset about is that he has pancreatic cancer, and is worrying about taking down their agency. Ted, clearly rattled, reacts terrifically -- he's so weird but so far I think I do like him.

Roger gets a tip from Daisy that there's some car executive stranded at the airport and we get an aaaaaaamzing shot of Roger emptying a bag full of Sterling's Gold (to me, a joke that will never get old) and dashing off to the airport. Roger gets to the airport and meets Mikey: They bond through commiserating about how miserable flying can be (if they could only see what it's like in 2013, and I don't just mean the uniforms) and how cute Daisy is and Roger is clearly setting the stage for something: He even goes so far as to tell Daisy to bring him water, not alcohol, and to get him on Mikey's flight. Who knew Roger even drank water?

NEXT: Ken Cosgrove!

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