Mad Men Recap: The Enemy

On Sunday night’s episode of Mad Men, “The Better Half,” SCDP/CGC remains nameless with almost no management; Peggy is stuck at a crossroads; and we get some insight into Don’s newest affair.

It’s about time we get to see more Betty Draper! Gosh, I never thought I’d say I miss her until now, but was anyone else not so surprised by the Betty & Don reunion? I’ve been waiting for them to hook-up since they divorced. Mad Men buffs hated her by the end of season 3 – she was the enemy of the Draper family – but she’s changed a lot since then, mostly for the better. Can’t say the same about Don though.

The one-night-stand gave us even more insight into Don’s twisted sexual needs. Don’s little moment with Betty was a heartbreaker; it just looks like they weren’t ready to end it when they did. No surprise there, since sex isn’t intimate for Don.

Considering that he lost his virginity to a prostitute in a brothel, as we learned in episode 8, maybe it makes sense that sex isn’t intrinsically attached to anything meaningful. Props go to Betty who woke up, put on a fresh face, and met up with her husband proudly and uninhibited by steamy sex with her ex; A seriously sharp move from her and I can’t help but start to love her character again!

Speaking of sharp:

Peggy’s finally showing how scared she is of where she lives. She didn’t want to live there, but her beau, Abe, was quite keen on being a “pioneer” in a poor neighborhood. He was stabbed when he exited the subway one night and, naturally, Peggy freaked out.

A few nights later, she was awoken by loud and rowdy neighbors, went to investigate, and with a turn just a little too sharp, she dug a knife into Abe’s torso. He dumped her in the ambulance because he apparently despises everything she does. He calls her “the enemy.” It isn’t too upsetting at all because he hasn’t been so supportive to her or her needs — or the fact that maybe some of the things she does with her career are important, too.

Who does Peggy have to turn to? I’d think Joan, but she instead heads straight to Ted’s office. They shared an intimate kiss earlier in the season, and he truly held onto it. Ted declared his love for her earlier in the episode and there was just something in her eyes that suggested she was on the same page. Peggy goes to him, probably hoping to get a hug or some encouragement, but he simply brushes her off like a dust mite-sized employee, all love somehow forgotten in only a day or so.

Other minor deets worth noting: Joan and Bob Benson – who called it? Because they are clearly warming up to each other. Meanwhile, Roger Sterling is realizing he’s not the best dad and his daughter helps him see that he’s certainly not a good grandfather (Read: He took his 4 year old grandson to Planet of the Apes). Naturally, Joan won’t let him be a part of their son’s life.

Meanwhile, Pete Campbell is struggling to hold his life together, yet none of his problems seem so important in the grand scheme of things. Get it together Pete.

This post was originally written for SWAY the Blog

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