Original Airing: March 25, 2012
Cast: Jon Hamm, Elizabeth Moss, Christina Hendricks, Vincent Kartheiser, John Slattery
Created by: Matthew Wiener
Distributed by: AMC (US)
It has been 17 long months since the last new episode of Mad Men, but last night it finally returned in fine form with a two hour season premier. When we last saw Don he was freshly engaged to secretary Megan. The two are now married and living in a shiny new apartment. Megan of course was promoted to a junior copywriter, just like Peggy and Joan predicted last season after the two announced their engagement. If the bipolar nature of their relationship from this episode alone is any indication, the honeymoon definitely won’t last very long—which is good because who wants to see a happy Don Draper. That would be boring.
Pete’s animosity towards Roger is starting to grow even more. Since Lucky Strike left Roger basically does nothing but act like a child around the office and Pete feels he does all the work but has much less power. It was thrilling to see the power struggle between these two and it will definitely be interesting to see it play out in the coming episodes as Roger continues to become more obsolete.
Joan, who man child Roger knocked up, was home on maternity leave after having her baby which she is passing off as her husband’s. It was hard to see her as frazzled as she was and not shining up the office. It is nice to see her with something good in her life, and all the better that it’s not actually her awful husband’s baby. If there is one character in this show that deserves all the happiness in the world it’s wonderful Joan.
Peggy and Don’s relationship continued to sour a bit as he failed to defend an idea of hers to a client. However there did not seem much bitterness in her attitude towards working with Megan. She actually appeared to be rather supportive towards her. Whether or not this is actually how she feels is probably something that will show itself later in the season.
As usual the show brilliantly deals with the growing racial tension of that decade, opening on a group from another ad agency throwing water bombs on a group of protesters out their window and ending with S.C.D.P. having to hire a minority after an ill advised jab at said agency in the paper. While this episode did not hit as hard as some it was entertainingly scandalous enough, with a boozy surprise party, some angry floor sex, and Harry Crane making a total ass out of himself. The only weak part was a kind of creepy Lane story line that had to do with a missing wallet but the rest of it was wonderful. If this episode is any indication we are sure to be in for a great season.