‘Mad Men’ season 6, episode 9 review: Did Don Draper, Betty do the unthinkable?

January JonesThere are some things on “Mad Men” that for whatever reason, we never expected to see in a million years. Seeing Don Draper and Betty Francis actually getting along is one of them, let alone doing what happened during this episode. (Warning: Major spoilers ahead!)

Early on in this episode, it felt like there was going to be a hookup happening when Don and Betty started to get along at camp, and there was that shot of Betty sporting some ridiculously short shorts. It took a sing-along and a few stories to eventually have it happen, since for the first time since quite possibly their early days of their marriage, Don showed a happier side of himself.

Of course, this is not a good time to show off that side. Betty and Don are married to other people now, and even after the two slept together, she made no bones about her thoughts on getting back with him: She likes her life with Henry better. Thanks to this, Don had to finally submit to trying to (gasp!) actually being a better husband to Megan. We’ll see how long that lasts.

This episode was not thankfully all about Don, as there were some other highlights. Peggy was starting to become increasingly frustrated with Abe’s bizarre reluctance to move, only for him to finally stop his padded train of paranoia when someone threw a rock through their window. To make matters worse, she later stabbed him at night, (thinking he was an intruder) and the man nearly died. We don’t really know how it took this for him to decide randomly to break up with her, but it happened … and now, Peggy can’t even get the time of day from Ted, the nicest guy in the history of all New York ad agencies.

Meanwhile, Roger Sterling saw his grandfather privileges revoked after his took his grandson to see “Planet of the Apes,” which is apparently this season’s idea of a good Roger story. He also later stopped by Joan’s, where he interrupted her and her new man-friend Bob Benson, who is trying to what he can to prove himself as a worthy guy.

This was arguably one of the better episodes of season 6, largely because it did do a great job of bringing so many people together. The Don / Betty story, while somewhat out of left field, was still interesting, and at least all of the characters had something to do. Our chief concern, though, still remains that save for the end of Peggy’s relationship, what really happened? There are only a handful of episodes left, and the pace is still rather glacial.

Overall, did you see the Don and Betty hookup coming? If you want to watch what Matthew Weiner and some of the cast had to say about the progression of the season prior to this episode, be sure to head on over to the link here.

Photo: AMC

Love TV? Be sure to like Matt & Jess on Facebook for more updates!