Sunday, February 3rd, 2008

Actor Christopher Allport, who played Pete Campbell’s father in the New Amsterdam episode, died on January 25 in the recent avalanches. He was 60 years old.

We wish his family all of our condolences.

New Amsterdam

So, before tonight’s airing of Marriage of Figaro, I thought it was time to write up some random thoughts on re-watching Ladies Room.

There’s a deep, soulful emphasis when Joan says “That sandwich is making me sad.” I really think that we’re going to learn more about Joan. (File that under Season 2 Speculation: I think Joan gets major backstory and I think it’s going to be full of sadness.)

In the realm of general sexism, we have Don telling Betty, “Leave the dishes for the girl.” “The girl.” Because, y’know, she’s a thing; specifically a thing that does dishes. “The girl,” by the way, is eight. Not to young too be the maid or anything. Yeesh.

But this is mostly Betty’s episode. When she’s with Mona in the ladies room and she can’t hold her lipstick, her remark is “It’s hard to hold onto anything these days.” The first time I saw this episode, I didn’t notice the “hard to hold onto” connection. The psychological meaning of Betty’s numbness is even clearer than I’d thought.

(By the way, anyone know the name of the actress who played a ladies room attendant; who said “If their purses get any smaller, we’re going to starve”? She reminded me very much of Yvette Freeman (Haleh on ER), but it’s sometimes hard to recognize actors through the period clothing and hair. IMDb and both come up blank, so if you know who it is, PUH-leeze tell me.)

Later, Betty talks about her fears regarding the accident: She’s not afraid of death, but of loneliness. If Sally were scarred, she would never marry and live her life alone, and this is what Betty can’t bear to consider. Loneliness. Not having a man. Not having a perfect appearance. Shit, I’m in Roberta territory here, stunned at what goes on behind Betty’s facade.

And one more thing about Betty: In the psychiatric session, she takes off the watch Don gave her. You know: The watch to make her happy, the now-you-have-everything-you-don’t-need-a-shrink watch. That watch.