PhDork: First of all: fuck yeah, Betty. Whenever she acts like an adult, I think she’s amazing. Unfortunately, that’s not been often this season. Last night, though, she was really mature. She demanded long-deserved answers. She listened but wasn’t a push-over. And she let didn’t fly off the handle once she confronted Don. (I totally ID with that. I can handle just about anything you have to tell me. I can’t handle evasion and lying and hiding.)
BeckySharper: Don’t you think that Betty experienced at least a little satisfaction–and maybe relief–that it turned out Don was desperate and playacting as she was? All those years of being treated like the Little Woman who was so lucky to be married to the big, important executive, and BOOM, turns out out the big important executive is just a white-trash con man named Dick. The power dynamic’s got to change now.
Good Oscar–well, Emmy–performance by Jon Hamm, too. I thought Don’s breakdown was totally convincing and agonized (That dropped cigarette? Perfect!)
PhDork: I’m sure Betty did had some quiet “hells yeah” moments. It was definitely good for her to see that Don is really just a man–and a deeply troubled one, at that–not some demigod. Her comment about money was pretty sharp, too: “You don’t understand it. (Peon.)” And seconding Hamm’s performance. He looked positively stricken.
PilgrimSoul: I thought the episode was anchored by some sharp performances – though January Jones is too fond of the ol’ nose wrinkle/eyebrow twitch for my taste.
PhDork: I can’t tell if that’s less-than-great-acting, or Betty’s patrician repression. Second of all: fuck yeah, Joan. Although the vase-smashing seemed a little soapy, I was glad that Dr. Rapist got his. His smarmy “you don’t know what it is to want something your whole life” speech was infuriating. The very picture of entitlement. And now I’m just waiting, rubbing my hands together, for him to be sent off to Vietnam, where he’ll further maim wounded soldiers w/ his “brainless fingers” before getting blown up and my Joanie will be rid of him.
BeckySharper: Rapist Ken Doll can not go to ‘Nam soon enough, IMO. Buh-bye!
PhDork: Third of all: The last line was a little on-the-nose-y for me. I liked that Sally and Bobby, who were talking about going as Minnie Mouse and an astronaut, instead went as a gypsy and a hobo–homeless, marginalized, etc.. Nice images for Don’s (and Betty’s, I guess) displacement, but even more so of the coming cultural shift–we’re only weeks away from Dealey Plaza. And although there was no Peggy, Roger was back in fine, venomous form (his quick “you weren’t” response to his old flame’s “you were The One” was as merciless a thing as ever I’d heard.
BeckySharper: I thought the “you weren’t” was BRUTAL. But excellent. She was totally manipulating him and it was nice to see Roger show some gumption–he’s been looking awfully foolish and even pathetic recently. As for Suzanne…that’s it? She just says “kthxbai” after sitting in the car all that time? The writers must have some kind of major dramatic trick up their sleeves, or that whole plotline will seem superfluous.
PhDork: Yeah, we haven’t seen the last of Suzanne. Whether Don returns to her (possible, now that Betty has Dick Whitman’s number and he needs to disappear anew) or she–or, my guess, her brother–pops up at an inopportune moment, we’ll have to pick up that story. Weiner doesn’t leave loose ends for too long.
PilgrimSoul: I found it, like much of this season, too abrupt in its development. You guys seem to have picked up on this too – the soapy shattering of the vase, which I found frankly rather unlike Joan (too messy), the weird acquiescence of Ms. Farrell, that just-too-much last line. There were an awful lot of blanks in the script, it seemed to me, that the actors were doing a very good job of filling of course, but which make me have less faith in Weiner than you do, PhDork. This season has been such a weird assemblage of tangents, and so suddenly throwing us into the main story again was a bit disconcerting.
PhDork: I agree the pacing of this season has been a hot mess (I wouldn’t stand for it in a film or play): feast and famine. Opening a lot of doors, then leaving them open for weeks, and finally stepping over the threshhold. That said, I do think Weiner and his team have all this stuff blocked out over the season and there will be some kind of payoff (beyond what we got Sunday), with another cliffhanger/open door before Season 3 is over.
Readers, what did you think of the show? Two episodes left…