I hated this episode so much.
It didn’t make sense to me at all that Megan would ask Don to help her land the Bartlett shoe gig. (And also — suddenly she’s an acutely depressed, falling-down drunk?) Sure, she used her relationship with Don to get a job once before, when she convinced Don to promote her from secretary to copywriter. But that promotion exposed her to endless ridicule, contempt and resentment. And now she wants to put herself in the same position, in front of the same people? For a shoe commercial? Not to mention the fact that her entire acting class will know that she promised to help her friend and then turned around and stabbed her in the back.
Joan’s little confession about Lane also rang false to me. True, Joan has slept with co-workers before, and of course we just had that ugly incident with the Jaguar dealership guy. But Joan is a woman who is strategic about the deployment of her sexual power, and careful about containing it. She keeps tight control on how people treat her and talk about her. Yes, she ended up having sex with the dealership guy, but she did it because it netted her a partnership — and she was horrified to know that the other partners were discussing her on those terms. And now she just opens up a conversation with Don about how she should have had sex with one of the partners to keep him happy? I don’t buy it.
It was as though the show wanted to end on a note where the three working women on the show — Megan, Joan and Peggy — are all on an upward professional trajectory, but also wanted to make a point that their accomplishments are tainted by sex. (The latter part of that construction doesn’t work for Peggy, although maybe that’s why the show threw in that bizarre shot of the dogs rutting in the hotel parking lot, tainting Peggy’s otherwise-perfect business trip.) But in order to get the stories to fit the theme, the episode had Megan and Joan acting in ways that didn’t quite fit their characters.
Also out of character: Pete’s unexpectedly self-aware, thoughtful speech to Beth in the hospital room. This season had too many tidy speeches in general.
Feel free to make your predictions for season six below. I understand that Adam is in charge of the betting pool.