With Sterling Cooper for sale, Betty finding Dick in a box, and JFK's assassination and feminism's second wave on the horizon, people's worlds are going to change, and they will each see it differently…"but they don't really want to."
Last night's episode was titled,"The Color Blue," referencing this post-coital conversation between Don and Sally's teacher Suzanne,, wherein they ponder a question one of her students asked, "How do I know if what I see as blue is the same as it is to you?" Don remarked, "People may see things differently, but they don't really want to."
Part of the shared human experience is the desire to be understood, to have others (or at least someone) see things as we do. But another part of the human experience is that we each have a different lens—shaped by our individual experiences—that renders a worldview unique to each person. So, basically, we're all doomed to misunderstandings.
Exhibit A: The teacher's brother.
He has epilepsy (or "fits") which is making socialization/work/life difficult for him: it freaks out those who don't understand the disorder. As the brother, Charlie, sees it, "Other people are the problem." He's tired of being misunderstood to the point that he doesn't want to even try to assimilate anymore. His sister tries to renew his faith in humanity when she tells him, "People are ignorant. They're scared of things they don't understand." But he may not have understood.
Exhibit B: Paul Kinsey
He's in the "other people are the problem" camp as well. And when he says "people" he means women, specifically Peggy. As Peggy pointed out to Don when she was asking him for a raise a few episodes back, Kinsey makes more money doing the same job as he does ("and not always as well"). In this clip, Paul's pitch for the Aqua Net account falls flat, but Peggy comes to the rescue with some good ideas. Paul sees her good work as a negative reflection on himself, rather than a positive reflection on his team.
Paul thinks he's telling Peggy something she doesn't already know when he says, "Wearing a dress isn't going to help you with [the] Western Union [account]." Clearly he thinks being a woman is a benefit for Peggy's career, rather than a hurdle.
While Kinsey was jerking off and getting wasted, Peggy was actually hammering out ideas, and making sure to keep track of them. If Peggy views her gender to be a hurdle in this business, maybe she understands that she can't do anything to fuck it up.
Once Kinsey finally has his inspiration, he's too busy being proud of himself to write it down. Perhaps, since he hasn't had to deal with the same setbacks as Peggy in this business, he isn't as prudent about his work. So, in that way, perhaps Peggy "wearing a dress" does help her with the Western Union account.
While Don is busy acting like Tony Soprano (sleeping over the goomah's house and lining his desk drawer with cash), Betty is busy reading The Group by Mary McCarthy, which was on the New York Times best-seller list in 1963. It's a novel concerning a group of women who come from affluent backgrounds and graduated from Vassar together in 1933. They find that the Great Depression has given them a more autonomous lifestyle, as they are encouraged to work and have careers. Again, the Depression was viewed by many people one way, and by this "group" as something completely different. Amazon says:
Mary McCarthy filets Ivy League society, socialism, 1930s child-rearing practices, sexual double-standards, psychoanalysis, and men in general.
Betty probably relates to the character Kay (which was loosely based on McCarthy's own life), as Kay "subsumes her own talent to the artistic 'genius' of her egocentric and philandering husband." Interestingly, since last night's episode, the book has gone from a ranking of around 64,000 to 3,200 on Amazon.
Interestingly, Sterling Cooper was founded in 1933, the same year The Group takes place.
While doing the laundry, Betty happens upon a set of keys that belong to Don. She seems relieved at first that they fit into is desk drawer (and not some women's apartment), but then she finds Dick.
He's gonna have some explaining to do. But after Don doesn't return home from work, Betty rethinks rocking the boat with a confrontation, and returns the box and key where she found them.
Does anyone else think that Don made a huge mistake giving his card to the teacher's brother, who "always" needs money? I have a feeling this guy is gonna blackmail Don for his drawer cash.
In the end, Kinsey, realizes that he's not so misunderstood, when Don and Peggy both empathize with his "lost idea." And in the end, he realized that Peggy's intelligence is what helped her out with the Western Union account.
In the car, on the way to Sterling Cooper's anniversary party, Roger's mother, who seems to be suffering through a bit of dementia, manages to drop a super insightful (not to mention, heavy on the foreshadowing) quip when she told Jane, "Enjoy the world as it is. They'll change it, and never give you a reason." November 22, here we come.