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Signal 30


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Drama, USA, 2012, 48 min.

Synopsis Mad Men "Signal 30" - April 16, 2012Fights! Secret noms de plume! Suburban dinner parties! Age inappropriate crushes!It was a very active episode of "Mad Men" this week, directed by John Slattery and centered on characters we don't normally get to see so much of.First up is Lane who is convinced by his wife to hang out with some new British pals to watch England win the World Cup. Although he is reluctant at first he ends up having a swell time getting his U.K. on and he lands some new business with his new pal Edwin, the head of Jaguar.When he brings this news to the partners they are skeptical he can close the deal and Roger gives him some pointers. Lane tries to put the pointers into action at dinner with Edwin but doesn't make much progress. So Don, Pete, and Roger step in to really wine and dine him. It turns out that Edwin thought Lane was a little prissy and really wanted to have some "fun." So the boys take him to a high end brothel. Everyone but Don partakes in the lovely ladies. When the madame asks why he doesn't appear interested in her product he says he was raised in a whorehouse so he's not so down with the ladies of the night. She then asks him his opinion of the place and whether she should get a TV. He says it's a classy joint and puts the kibosh on the television.On the way home, Pete feels like Don is silently judging him and is surpised and upset by this especially given Don's own adulterous past. Don points out that Pete has everything and shouldn't throw it away. Pete basically admits he's miserable.The trip to the whorehouse has consequences, however, when Edwin's wife discovers his indiscretion-- thanks to telltale chewing gum found in his pubic hair-- and calls Lane's wife in an uproar. Lane goes into the partner meeting livid. The other men basically giggle and Pete says they did what they had to do and that he sees Lane's position as useless. Lane calls Pete a "grimy pimp" and challenges him to a fight. Roger knows it's wrong but he's excited to see it. Don pulls the drapes on the conference room and the men duke it out with Lane the resounding winner by a knockdown.Pete demoralized and bloody trudges out. Lane emboldened and embarrassed by his victory is visited by Joan whom he promptly kisses. She stands, opens the door, and continues the conversation, graciously pretending as if nothing happened. Lane laments his perceived uselessness but Joan pumps him up.(She and Peggy had also giddily listened at the door during the fight.)In other news Ken Cosgrove is apparently courting publishers for a collection of his stories. Peggy spies him out with an older gentleman and is worried he's interviewing with other firms. He comes to her confides that the man was from Farrrar Strauss and that he has been writing sci-fi stories under the nom de plume "Ben Hargrove." (Way to be inventive, Kenny!) He says he would tell her if he was casting about for a new job and that their pact is still intact: if he gets a job, he will take her with him. He asks her to keep it under her hat.It turns out that it's not Peggy's hat he has to worry about. Trudy and Pete throw a dinner party -- which Don desperately tries to wriggle out of -- and during the course of the meal Ken's wife Cynthia lets it slip that Ken has been writing. He explains one story about a robot who sabotages a bridge he's building to kill humans in order to exercise some control over his masters. The other dinners are surprised and impressed in turn. Trudy asks Megan about getting into advertising and she explains that although she did try to be an actress the ad agency was a good way to pay the bills. And when she saw the work that Peggy and Don did she was hooked.Pete has been having trouble with a leaking faucet and he thought he fixed it. But after dinner the faucet explodes. Don jumps into action, doffing his shirt, grabbing tools and fixing the valves much to the fantastical delight of the women. (Later, Don makes Megan pull the car over to get it on and she admits she's only doing it because she was so turned on by Don's manly fixing of the faucet.)The next week Ken is called into Roger's office and told in no uncertain terms to knock off his moonlighting as a writer. Ken realizes Pete must've ratted him out so when Peggy tells him Lane beat the crap out of him he laughs and says he's surprised that he beat him to it. And even though Ken was told to stop writing, instead we see him bed later that night starting a new story about "the man with the miniature orchestra" inspired by Pete's fancy new hi-fi. He has changed his pen name to "Dave Algonquin."In Pete's other storyline, he has started taking driving classes at the local high school. There he meets a teenage beauty meet named Jenny Gunther. He hits on her unabashedly and she seems game to take a Sunday ride with him to the Bronx Botanical Gardens, which it turns out his family helped fund. But before he can get her in the car, a hot young jock from her chemistry class joins the driving class and takes her attention away. By the end of class he's already getting to third base with young Jenny, much to Pete's dismay.

Directed by John Slattery  

Starring Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser, January Jones, Christina Hendricks, more...

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