"Mad Men" (Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on AMC) has had plenty of wild parties this season, but this past Sunday's episode, "At the Codfish Ball," may have been the most eventful, and deflating.
Megan's feuding parents were visiting from Montreal at the same time Don was to be honored by the American Cancer Society for his "Why I Quit Tobacco" editorial, and the group, including Sally, dressed to the nines and descended on the gala for a lovely evening. Instead, the ball became a perfect storm of disappointment, sex and lies.
The newly-single Roger Sterling thought the gala would be a perfect opportunity to acquire new business. He spent the week studying flash cards of the high-powered CEOs in attendance. But once the event actually started, he ended up in the other room with Megan's mom's (guest star Julia Ormond) head in his lap. She was getting back at her husband for cheating on her with "his latest grad student" and to make matters worse, poor Sally Draper accidentally walked in on them, losing any shred of adolescent innocence she may have had left.
At the very moment that was happening, both Don and Megan were being served their own cold doses of reality. Megan's father, a philandering Marxist academic, called out his daughter for taking the easy path to wealth and luxury, and made his disdain for Don, and the couple's chosen profession, crystal clear.
Perhaps the most deflating moment came in a conversation Don had at the bar with Ed Baxter, Ken Cosgrove's father-in-law and an executive at Dow Corning. While Don was expecting the room of powerful businessmen would be eating out of his hand after winning his award, Baxter let him know that the big corporations aren't interested in working with Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce after Don's moves with Lucky Strike. "How could they trust you, after the way you bit the hand?" he told him. Another drink, please.
"Mad Men" airs on Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on AMC.