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'Mad Men' recap: Counting the ways the new agency will implode


The "Mad Men" from Season 6 are, from left, Roger Sterling (John Slattery) and Don Draper (Jon Hamm). Credit: AMC

What could wrong with Ted and Don in the same room? In the same company? Oh come on, now, really. So yes, Sunday's "For Immediate Release" was a game-changer.

But --  just to borrow a little bit of the negative vibe that Ted Chaough brings in abundance to every human encounter, let's count the ten ways this union of SCDP and Ted's outfit -- which I guess we should now be calling Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce Cutler Gleason & Chaough -- could fly off the rails and into that canyon of broken dreams and crushed crumpled Mad Avenue hype.

1. Ted and Don the same room -- in the same company. Really. Oil and water, these two. One a big talent, the other a minimal talent who thinks he's a big talent. One, an ad visionary. The other a hack. How long will it take before Don recognizes same -- or Ted does?

2. Peggy is now ensconced in the shimmering edges of a forming love triangle -- one with complications the measure of which she can't begin to imagine.

As we now know, she and Ted shared a private moment, even though this has clouded her view of who he really is. She may think there is love in the air, but it's really just a fine aerosol that will dissipate, and has, the minute Don strides through the door. And how long before Ted realizes that Peggy's true affections, if not allegiance, lie with Don?

3. Pete will hate the idea, but then Pete hates everyone and everything, up to and including the universe, which now appears aligned against Pete too. So maybe this agency combo won't be so bad after all in the general universal scheme of things.

4. Chevy will realize that they've been conned -- or if not conned then hoodwinked, or slipped a double Beam on the rocks when they weren't looking. Meanwhile, Ted is right about one thing -- they want bodies on the ground. How long before they realize that this unified agency is simply a combination of two weakened rivals who needed each other to survive?

5. Bert will hate the idea.  He was ready to cash out at $11 a share. Goodbye eleven bucks a share! Hello Ted and Co.!

6. Joan will hate the idea. Joan is already in a very bad way with Don firing Herb and Jag. What! She had to sleep with slug for nothing! Plus, she was looking for a payday, too.

7. Ted will hate the idea -- or hate it if he finds out the agency he just merged with lost Vick's because the boss caught his son-in-law in a whore house, while his son-in-law conversely caught him in a whorehouse as well. Explain THAT to the new partners, Pete.

8. Don will hate the idea -- especially when he learns that Ted's partner has cancer, and has a cash-out clause which means when he draws closer to the payday he wants so badly, Don will learn that some of his bacon will be going to pay off this guy as well. Honestly, this is probably why Ted agreed to it in the first place -- spread the damage to new partners.

9. Roger will love the idea -- until he finds out his new "come fly with me" pal Daisy wants a piece of the action now, too, because she disrupted the Dancer Fitzgerald Sample pitch. (Why does this sort of stuff always seem to happen to Roger?)

10. Peggy will never be able to get out the news release announcing this glorious new pipe dream of a merger because she can't come up with a name that sounds like "a place you'd like to work," per Don's parting instructions. Really, who could? Do you begin with "Sterling" or "Cutler?" Do you treat the names like a deck of cards? GleasonPryceDraperCooper. Poor Pegs. What did she do to deserve this?

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