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The Strategy


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Drama, USA, 2014, 47 min.

Synopsis "Mad Men" - "The Strategy" - May 18, 2014Peggy and Mathis do some market research at a Burger Chef and interview a mother in a station wagon with her kids. She is impatient and basically says her favorite thing about Burger Chef is convenience and she feels guilty she's not making dinner.Pete and Bonnie are on a flight to New York. They're coming for a weeklong stay. He's putting them up in a hotel and taking her shopping and then having sex with her. He says he does have to go visit Tammy. She wants to come but Pete doesn't want to "confuse" her. Bonnie says that maybe Tammy's confused that her parents are still married. He seems to like that this bothers her. She says she doesn't know where it's going but she doesn't want it to fail on account of delay. He thought she never wanted to get married again. She starts stroking him through his pants and tells him to meet her in the restroom. He says he's always wanted to do that.Don tidies up the apartment.Joan is leaving her apartment and her mother notes that she's getting too skinny. Joan says every time she says that she cheats on her diet. She kisses Kevin goodbye and tells her mother to take him outside today.Bonnie comes into Don's office and says hello. Pete comes in and shakes hands he invites Don to sit in on the meeting for Burger Chef. Bonnie says goodbye and they head into the conference room.Peggy presents to Pete, Don, Lou, and Harry. The ad is targeted at moms who feel guilty about going to Burger Chef. They want to turn the place into a special treat. Peggy walks them through the ad which has a twist ending where Dad has beat them to the punch by picking up the food. Everyone is suitably impressed by her presentation. Lou likes to see family happiness again. Pete, annoying Peggy, asks Don what he thinks. He compliments the work. She gives him credit for the tag.Jim from McCann runs into Roger in the steam room and they verbally spar. Leo makes cryptic comments about car and tobacco companies. Roger gives him a hard time back and basically, jokingly, calls him gay.Lou, Peggy and Pete meet. Pete is drinking rum from the tiki bar that Lou's wife installed in his office. (Apparently, Lou's wife is a "card.") They tell her they want Don to give the presentation to Burger Chef, and have Peggy step in as the voice of the mom. They think he offers authority and she offers emotion. She doesn't like it but she wants to win the pitch so she acquiesces. They both compliment her on her good work and Pete says she's as good as any woman in the business. Ted who is on via conference call, unbeknownst to Peggy at first, agrees.Bob Benson returns and he has some GM execs with him including one named Bill Hartley. They say hi to Ken. Bob introduces Joan. Hartley seems to flirt with her. Bob says he wants to swing by and see Kevin on Sunday. She agrees and says he'll have to see her mother. He says he wants to see everyone.Peggy goes to Don and presents the idea of him presenting to Burger Chef as if it were her idea. As she's leaving he mentions he's been ruminating on the idea and wonders about the concept of pitching it from the kid's perspective. She says the pitch is set. She shuts the door and he punches his hand in triumph. She looks less triumphant.She then runs into Megan who has dropped by to say hi. They go into Peggy's office and Megan says L.A. is exciting and new and quiet. Stan comes in and gives her a big hug. He asks if she heard about Ginsberg. She has and asks if he's seen him. He has but notes that Peggy hasn't. Don comes out and he's surprised to see her there. They take off and Stan says he misses her. Peggy grouses that he didn't ask about the dry run pitch. He asks if there's a problem. She says no they loved it. He wonders if she's mad at him. She says no and dismissively says good night.Jim runs into Roger and tells him he played a round of golf with the big wig from Phillip Morris and wants Roger to help him land him and to stop thinking about Don and start thinking about the company.Bob Benson gets a call in the middle of the night. It's Bill Hartley. He's in jail for trying to fellate an undercover officer. His face is beaten. As they ride back in the cab, Bill says he misses Detroit because he has that city wired and notes that his wife "understands." He hopes Bob will keep it to himself and wonders if Bob was ever arrested. Bob says no. He says he likes Bob and appreciates this and is going to miss him. Bob tells him not to threaten him. Bill says he's not threatening him. Chevy is taking the XP in house, the agency is losing that business. But he says GM loves the work and him and will bring him over to Buick most likely. This is actually great news for Bob. Bill tells him to keep it on the down low and it's happening imminently. He asks how Bob lived in New York with so much temptation. Bob admits it was hard.Peggy is tossing and turning. She gets out of bed, grabs a file, presumably Burger Chef, looks at some pages, gets disgusted and tosses the file on the floor.On Saturday, Pete goes to pick up Tammy for their day. She doesn't really recognize him and hides behind the nanny/maid who introduces herself as Verna. Pete shows her a gift wrapped box and says it's a Barbie all the way from California. She still seems shy and won't let go of Verna. Verna says Trudy isn't home and helps Pete bring Tammy to the car.Don wakes up and looks lovingly at Megan who is setting up a lovely breakfast on the balcony for them. He hugs her from behind and asks if it was all a dream. He says they're going to eat breakfast and then he's taking her shopping.Peggy goes into work on Saturday lights a smoke and calls Stan who thinks it's his girlfriend calling. She says she's worried the work isn't good and he's saying it is so he can go hang out with his girl. He says it's good. She worries there's a better idea. He notes there's always a better idea and asks if she wants him to come in. She tells him no.Pete returns with Tammy and Trudy still isn't home. He asks to stay to tuck her in. He calls Bonnie and says he's going to miss the show and to go without him. She's not happy. He stays, has a few beers, and notices a cake on the table. Trudy comes home and he fumes that she was out with some guy while she's still married and says it's immoral. She notes his spent his time for "the year" with Tammy, they are getting a divorce and it's time for him to go. He smashes his beer bottle into the cake and leaves.Peggy, drinking rum in Don's office calls and berates him for dropping his concept about the kids' POV for the Burger Chef ad and tells him it's terrible and wishes he wouldn't undermine her. He essentially hangs up on her. Megan is worried he's lost his appetite and he says he has not and they sit to eat.Bob comes to visit Joan, her mom-- for whom he brought flowers-- and Kevin-- for whom he bought an erector set. He says he came up bust on a gift for Joan but he has a big day planned. They head out.Megan is rifling through the closets looking for her fondue pot. Don thought she was just picking up summer clothes. She says she misses her things. She looks at the pile of stuff on the floor and wonders if she can check it all on the plane. He says he'll bring some stuff next time he comes. She says next time instead of visiting New York or L.A. she wants to go somewhere where it's just the two of them and no job obligations or stress. He likes that idea.Bonnie returns from shopping and is disappointed Pete ordered room service without her. She's also grumpy she wore sandals in New York and her feet got dirty. She grumps at him about having to work and leaving her alone. He says he's got a lot to do. He tries to "seduce" her and she says he's not going to [have sex] his way out of it. She goes to wash her feet saying she doesn't like him in New York.Don goes into the office to help Peggy. She bitches at him some more and grouses about her idea is no good. He says you have to learn to live with the idea of it being no good. She then asks for his help, asking to explain how he thinks, to go through it out loud. He says usually thinks about not what the client wants and not what he wants. He says when he's really unsure about an idea he usually abuses the people whose help he needs and then takes a nap. She smiles and says done. And then he says he starts at the beginning and sees if he ends up in the same place. They start brainstorming.At Joan's, out of the blue Bob proposes to Joan. He says they could be rich and happy and a family. He kisses her. She says he doesn't want this and says he's basically proposing an "arrangement" since they both know he is gay. He says GM will expect a certain kind of executive. He says-- to her face-- that she can't be happy almost 40 living in a 2 bedroom apartment with her mother and son and she will never get a better offer. She says she hopes she will find love and would rather die hoping for that then settle for this and he should hope for love too. He says he's just being realistic. She says good night.Peggy and Don keep working on the idea but fall into a personal conversation. She gets teary admitting she recently turned 30 and talking to all those moms in Burger Chef parking lots made her wonder what she did wrong. Don hands her a hanky and says she's doing great and he worries about a lot of things but doesn't worry about her. She asks what he has to worry about. He says he worries about not having done anything and having no one. She wonders if the family's they are talking about even exist anymore in the age of families' eating around the TV. Peggy has an epiphany and says they need to pitch Burger Chef as a place where everyone is family and breaks bread. Don notices "My Way" playing on the radio and invites Peggy to dance. They do. She lays her head on his chest. He kisses the top of her head.Don, Pete, Roger, Joan, Burt, and Jim meet and he breaks the news about GM. Jim says he wants to do articles in the Times and the Wall Street Journal and talk up their new computer and make Harry a partner. Roger is mad that Joan knew. Joan and Roger are opposed to Harry being a partner. When Joan tells him that Bob Benson told her the news and is going to Buick he realizes what the McCann exec Jim was talking about in the steam room. They're worried that SCP is going to steal Buick.Peggy and Don invite Pete to meet them at a Burger Chef. Pete notes his "plans have changed." (Bonnie is seen flying home alone in first class a couple of rows in front of Megan.) They pitch Pete on shooting the ad in the restaurant and their "family" idea. Pete balks at first saying mom's are more relatable but Don gives it his seal of approval and he's on board. They share burgers, shakes, fries, and laughs.

Directed by Phil Abraham  

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

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