Welcome to Drunk Men: The Mad Men Rewatch – if you’re new here, we’re up to episode 12 of season one, and I watch it while drinking a cocktail and getting a bit sloshed (see drunk). This episode is called “Nixon vs. Kennedy,” so we’re making a Garden of Eden. No connection, it’s just tasty.
To make this, you’ll need:
- 50ml Gin (highly recommend the Melbourne Gin Company)
- 10 ml Elderflower Cordial (or elderflower cider because why not?)
- Squeeze of Fresh lime
- Fresh mint leaves, about 6 (torn)
- 60ml Cloudy apple juice
Put all of your ingredients into a shaker full of ice and do the shimmy shimmy shake. Pour into a tall glass and garnish with a sprig of mint.
On with the show!
It’s voting day! America is picking between Nixon and Kennedy and it’s TOO SOON and it makes me want to cry. Hamm pizza escorts a guy called Herman into Big Boss’ office. They talk about icky UK food (whyyyyy do they eat blood pudding whyyyyy??) and how Herman landed American Airlines as a client (heh… landed! Like a plane! Zzzooooom!) I think Herman might be going for Peanut’s job…
Meanwhile, the ad men are blabbing with each other about stuff, and even though I’ve tuned out to whatever the heck it is that they’re discussing I’m pretty sure that they’re talking about chasing skirts (you know, something different for a change).
Jerk Face goes to open Draper’s door and Peggy stops him before he can by saying “can I help you?” and he looks at her like she’s turned into a French Poodle all I wanna do is LAUGH AND LAUGH oh my goodness yes!!! Slaaaay Peggy! While he looks constipated Peggy buzzes Hamm sandwich and gets the OK to let Jerk Face into the office.
Once he’s in there, Jerk Face complains that Hamm spam doesn’t take him seriously (HAH!) as a candidate to which Hamm chops replies “…a candidate for what?” My thoughts exactly Hamm terrine. My thoughts exactly. Jerk face tries to list of his many (HAH!) exceptional qualities, which (ZOMG) aren’t terribly exceptional. Jerk face chucks a tanty and Hamm doesn’t understand where the 3 year old in his office came from.
The office has an election party and they put into a water cooler thingy (you know the thing that takes the big things of water… those things)… they put in a massive bottle of crème de menthe. That’s right. Not water. Well, look it probably was as far as the props department was concerned, but it’s crème de menthe for the episode OKAY? Blech.
Hey, hey, hey guess what? More alcohol doesn’t make any of these characters better people. Or more interesting or fun. The complete opposite of me.
Hamm croissant chooses to break routine and go home (to burn it to the ground? He’s never there FFS). The small Draper child asks what the Electoral College is and I begin to weep into my drink. Luckily, Betty goes to put the little one to bed before we have to hear about that crazy system.
Regretfully, we cut back to the office party where one of the ad men chases another woman around the office, pins her to the ground, and reveals the colour of her underwear because he had a bet on it.
Everyone is watching ,and either laughing or staying silent. I. Am. Gritting. My. Teeth.
BRB, getting another drink.
One of the other guys repeats the horrible chase with another lady. Peggy decides to go home, and her colleague tells her to stay because it’s “gonna be fun”…
Jerk Face is at home in his jammies, going through Draper’s parcel that he nicked from the office. It contains photos of Draper’s family, and OH MY GOD HE’S GOING TO FIGURE OUT THAT HIS NAME ISN’T DON DRAPER.
Oh sh*t. Oh no.
He’s going to totally Jerk Face him and be a jerk face and leverage this to get the position he wants.
This is not good.
Jerk Face’s wife not-Annie confronts him and tells him about all the times she’s caught him/known he wasn’t in bed (which wouldn’t be hard because without his ego she can probably breathe in there). She knows when he is in the living room looking through the box. The box that isn’t his. Ohhhh snap! Not-Annie is clever like actual Community Annie and knows that Jerk Face is being a jerk face.
Back in the office the ad men find a dramatic play that Paul wrote. Ohhhhh. His name is Paul, gotcha. Took me 13 episodes but that’ll stick now. The men laugh for a few seconds, before deciding it would be a great idea to do a reading of it in the office using the staff. Sal (the guy who likes guys) plays the lead, and kisses Joan, who afterwards seems pleasantly surprised or – more likely – realises that he’s totally gay.
As the election votes continue to be counted and broadcast on television (*sob* *drink*) Rich Sommer kisses one of the ladies out of joy, because vote counting is sooooo hot right now, and she decides she wants more lip action. Oh dear, I could have sworn he was really into monogamy… He leaves the scene feeling very awkward, but she follows him to his office to apologise. He takes off his glasses and totally Superman’s the lady (such eyes, very colour, wow). They fall on each other’s lips again and close the door (to fall on other parts of each other).
It looks like most of the people in the office have left. Joan turns off the tele and kicks off her shoes. She goes to sit next to Paul who considers himself to be an Orson Welles because he wrote a play.
Guess that makes me Geoffry Chaucer.
Joan and Paul stand close to each other and start dancing the cha cha.
Rich Sommer wakes up the next morning to find himself on his office couch, with the office lady on top of him and a big dose of monogamy shame. He discovers his glasses are broken, probably by his psychic wife who sensed a disturbance in her Clark Kent.
Peggy arrives at work that morning to discover a trashed office and green vomit in her waste basket. And someone stole $3 from her locker. And her boobs are getting huge. She’s not happy. I wouldn’t be either, back pain is a killer.
Jerk face returns to glazed Hamm’s office, parcel re-wrapped and ready for delivery. Peggy tries to get some level of politeness out of him but Jerk face sulks and tells her to be careful about the way she speaks to him. He then tells Draper the parcel came to him by mistake AND IS A TOTAL LIAR MCLIARSON JERF FACE. He then has the audacity to ask Hamm mousse if he’s reconsidered his candidacy, and of course he hasn’t because DUH – JERK FACE. And then it happens.
Jerk face tells Draper his name isn’t Draper. Jerk face called some guy at the Department of Defence, verifying Draper’s real identity. Hamm salad tells him to leave, so Jerk face dangles the possibility that this information might make its way to Big Boss.
Draper gets reaaaal close to Jerk face and tells him how blackmail is totally not cool. Not even a little bit. PREACH. Jerk face tells Draper it’s not blackmail. Iam now waiting for him to declare his penis to be 20 inches long, and that he once had a threesome with Amelia Earhart. It’s all “alternative facts”.
Once Jerk face is kicked out, shredded Hamm tears the parcel open. Hesees the dog tags and photographs, and realises that Jerk face knows. Flashback to the war. Private Hamm toastie is confronted by his commanding officer and unit… a single person. It looks bleak.
Draper snaps back into the “present” and runs to his emotional fun-bag Rachel, begging her to run away with him. Looks like there’s a bit of a pattern here, when things go bad, run away. SEE, I DON’T NEED A PSYCHOLOGY DEGREE TO KNOW THAT, DRAPER. If anyone should be in therapy it should be you buddy, you are doing your family a world of hurt and you gots to sort yo issues out bro.
Hamm quiche asks her “isn’t this what you wanted?” and Rachel looks astounded. She wants it, but this request is totally off the hinge. That’s when she realises “this isn’t what I wanted”.
Draper says they can’t be together here… because there’s “nothing here”.
Rachel looks mortified thinking about his children and family being abandoned. Draper gets extra whiney and dammit man you’re SUPPOSED to be better than that Jerk face idiot, you are going to LOSE HER.
She lands him with a K.O. “What kind of man are you? Go away, drop everything, leave your life?” She is so strong, breaking down as she tells him that she was only ever a cheap affair. “You never wanted to run away with me, you just wanted to run away”. Oh heck, this is so painful. You didn’t deserve her heart Hamm and now she’s kicking you to the curb. He leaves her wounded, but still showing incredible strength.
Hamm returns to his office to find Peggy in there crying. They drink some sort of alcohol and Peggy reveals that because she complained to security about the vomit and missing money from her locker that the African Amerian janitor and lift operator were fired. She’s gutted. That the real a****holes of the office get to do whatever they want and there aren’t any consequences for their actions. Which gives Hamm an idea.
He goes to Jerk face’s office and tells him that he has a “deep lack of character”. Yeeeouch! Jerk face again repeats his generous offer to blackmail Hamm, to which Hamm responds with the best possible move EVER. He decides to go to Big Boss and reveal his “identity problem” himself. Like a big schoolyard bully, Jerk face gets upset and follows. He continues to sook the entire way to Big Boss’ office.
Jerk face follows Draper into Big boss’ office and blabs his big mouth. Big Boss walks around the desk carefully, and says…
Waaait for it…
Big toddler Jerk Face leaves. Big Boss gives Draper permission to fire him, but cautions that he may want to keep a close eye on him (because of course he’s a big f**king d-bag who deserves to be monitored).
Flashback to the war, Hamm omelette and his CO are getting shot at. A mistake sees Hamm taco drop his lighter, some fuel catch fire and an explosion goes off. The CO is gutted & mangled from the blast… Hamm soup takes his dog tags and switches them, so he gets to “run away”. Volunteering for the war was the first time he did it, and now it’s a tradition.
They return the body of “Whitman” to the family. Draper stays on the train, watching his old family receive the coffin the real Draper is occupying. His young brother recognises him – just like he said he did in that episode – and runs after the train as it leaves the station. Poor kid. Devastated to lose his family, confronted by his brother’s deception and new identity as Draper he went and killed himself… Heartbreaking.
As Draper arrives home, the television announces Kennedy as the winner, and we fade to black…