Guess what everyone? there's a new person to hate on Mad Men, Don Draper's new wife, former secretary and all around horse face, Megan. She does everything wrong; unwittingly usurps some of Peggy's responsibility, sleeps in the buff when Don's kids are around, throws him lavish surprise parties that everyone in the office makes fun of the day after, unleashes some world class sex-as-a-weapon tricks on her husband that make us all question her motives.
That aside, the show has definitely mellowed out the role of the woman; Peggy is her fussy usual self and begins to fall neatly into the role of subservient girlfriend to her new preachy and self-richeous left-wing boyfriend. Joan is coping with the beyond universally difficult role of single motherhood as well as her own mother gets on everyone's last nerve, Jane (remember her? the 6-year-old Roger married in Season 2) acts bitchy and jealous, and Betty is no where to be found. All in all, without her the show's narrative has a much better cohesive flow, and her incorrigible character is not missed from the new storyline of everyone moving on with their lives.
Life at Sterling Cooper Draper Price is as Ken puts it 'stable' which is as Pete erroneously describes as 'that level right before failure'. He's a new parent as well, though we never see baby Tammy, just Trudy walking around with post-baby fat still making her more attractive than most. Ken has a fiance, and if you're a child of the 90's you remember actress Larisa Oleynick from The Secret World of Alex Mack, she seems pretty open minded and closes a blind eye to Ken's inevitable philandering.
Layne, still upset from his inability to stand up to his father and marry the Playboy bunny he was so passionately taken with has decided to 'work' on his marriage, meaning ignore it for the most part, and bring his boner-killer of a wife over to the states for good. He entertains the idea of hooking up with a very very very young looking girl who's picture he'd discovered in a wallet that was left in the same cab he was taking, but it seems like he'll have to be sexually frustrated for quite some time more.
It seems like this season everyone is settling into their domestic roles which leads to a sedation over the sexual subtext of Mad Men at least for now. The most sexual apparatus of the show save for Don Draper is Joan Harris, who was kept in bathrobes and pajamas patiently rocking her new baby to sleep until of course she realizes that she might be replaced at any minute and arrives to the office wearing a gaudy hot-pink plunging neck line number all with baby in tow.
|Stan Rizzo, art director and loose cannon at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, keeps trying to nail Peggy to no avail.|
A new character that Mad Men is starting to utilize better is Stan the man Rizzo. A feisty and blunt hunk of guy who's at it with whomever talks longer than 3 seconds to him. He's got biceps, tight pants, and a fantastic arrogance that though might not drive the girls from the secretarial pool to his office, but at least gets us viewers interested. His boyish charm and rugged physical construct, coupled with a twisted and yet sardonic sense of humor is a refreshing new angle to explore. Hopefully soon he will be promoted to principal cast, but we'll just have to wait and see. Great job Mad Men, seriously, I'm glad you're back. Keep it up.