(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)
TITLE: Mad Men - Season 2 / Disc 4
TIME RIDDEN / FILM LENGTH: 3 hours 11 minutes
DISTANCE RIDDEN WHILE VIEWING: 43.1 miles
TOTAL CINEMA MILES LOGGED: 714 miles
SYNOPSIS: The turbulent times of the early 1960s, including the emergency of the California lifestyle, the civil rights movement and the Cuban missile crisis all seen through the eyes of Advertising executives at Sterling Cooper, a Madison Avenue advertising agency.
CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER: I love this show, because it shows what the world was really like when I was a child growing up, stripped of all the political correctness and fantasy that is usually used to portray it in current day television and film. This show also shows the beginning of societies descent into the ‘marketing age’, where unscrupulous executives started to sell us things that we did not really need all in the name of profits.
PROS AND CONS: (Episode Summary of the disk)
The Inheritance: The episode deals with family and their expectations. Betty’s father’s stroke and his losing touch with reality transitions to Pete Campbell and the inheritance of his family after the death of his father along with his mother’s ignorance of her situation. Glenn, the little boy of divorced parents that have moved into the neighborhood is found sleeping in Betty’s back yard. Glenn confesses that the he wants to run away with Betty and save her. The theme here is focusing on the issues with our parents and the reality of being a parent. There are subplots of having children and racial relations with Kinsey and Crane.
The Jet Set: Don and Pete go to California to market to the burgeoning aerospace industry. Don abandons Pete at the hotel and falls into the hedonist lifestyle with the ‘continentals’ (hence the episode title). Roger contemplates divorce from his wife Mona and the sale of Sterling Cooper in order to afford the divorce settlement. The deal to sell is brokered by Duck Phillips to sell the firm to the British in hopes of that he (Duck) will be able to gain control of the Agency. Peggy dates a homosexual and begins her transformation from office girl to creative director.
The Mountain King: The title is taken from the song that a boy is playing at the piano when Don visits Anna Draper, the real Don’s ex-wife, after leaving the 'continental' compound near Palm Springs. There are issues of living in fear and taking risks as Peggy gets her own office by being more of a risk taker than most of the men in the office and Bert and Roger agree to sell the company to the British firm of Putnam Powell and Lowe. The underlying theme is the unknown of the future and the decisions that we have to make to move forward into it.
Meditations in an Emergency: The title comes from the book that Don finds at Anna Draper’s house in California from the previous episode. This entire episode is overshadowed by the Cuban Missile crisis and the uncertainty and fear that the cast feel about the future. This fear is further exacerbated by the sale of Sterling Cooper to Putnam Powell and Lowe, which leads to one of the classic scenes in the series, when Don informs Duck that he has no contract and won’t be going forward with the new agency.
To read an overview of this project, check out the initial post for this series.
Clicking on the title will take you to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) entry for this film.
This film was viewed while exercising on my recumbent cycle. A summary of my time spent working out on my journey through movie-land can be found on Strava.com.
The summary of the project and a glimpse of what is coming up next can be found on my public LaserDisc spreadsheet.