Mad Men: When Bad Parents Want Good Kids

During Ginsberg's forced blind date on Sunday's Mad Men, he asks his companion, "Do you like kids?" Oh, Ginsberg, you weird, undateable, virginal, soup-ordering mess. She's a teacher — well, student teacher, she says — and yes, she likes kids. And that makes her a real anomaly in the Mad Men universe, where virtually no one likes children (or babies, who are similar to children but even worse). This week's Mad Men was about the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., but it used that event as a lens for examining child-rearing and parenthood. Do you like children? By that, don't you mean Do you like progress?

Peggy is elated when Abe casually mentions his plans for their future family. Don has a shocking (to him) moment of discovering that he loves his son. "That man had a wife and four children," Pete spits at Harry. We rarely hear Pete talk about his daughter, yet there he was, asking Trudy when he could see her. Kids, kids, kids, kids. Megan calls her dad and is disgusted. Dawn comes to work because her mother said to.

"The Flood" has so far mostly been compared to the season-three episode "The Grown-Ups," where the characters react to John F. Kennedy's assassination. But "The Flood" also resonates with a different season-three episode, "Wee Small Hours." That one also acknowledged King's existence, though in a more minor way than "Flood" does. We saw Don and Suzanne, Sally's free-spirited teacher, listen to King's "I Have a Dream" speech, which Suzanne vowed she would teach to her students when school starts in the fall. Later, we saw Don and Betty's housekeeper Carla listening to King's eulogy for three of the little girls killed in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church.



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