Don't read on unless you've seen "Lady Lazarus," Sunday's Season 5 episode of "Mad Men."
A strange sense of anti-climax pervaded this episode, which felt like a bridge between earlier events and themes and what's to come. I couldn't help but feel during the entire hour that a big explosion or a major event was on its way, but it ended with Don merely picking up the needle on a Beatles record and walking out of an empty room.
Emptiness, missed connections, lies and not getting what you want -- those were the recurring ideas, but overriding all that was the sense that someone was going to die or something terrible was going to happen. But nothing did (unless we saw Don begin to truly fall out of love with Megan?). It was all pretty ambiguous, and I spent much of the hour waiting for a confrontation that never came.
Not surprisingly, in this season of readily identifiable symbols, the episode pivoted around a very brief moment in which Don confronted an actual void, instead of the usual existential ones. Read More...