At the Draper home; Betty’s father and his new girlfriend, Gloria, have arrived. Betty doesn’t want to give her father sugar, she insists he have saccharine because she’s worried about his diabetes; meanwhile Gloria offers to get sugar from the car.
Betty takes Don aside to complain about Gloria, it’s “unseemly,” that her father should have a girlfriend so soon after her mother’s death. She calls Gloria “a vulture” and suggests she was hanging around her mother’s funeral to find him.
Betty and the kids will go to the Jersey shore with dad and Gloria. Don will join them tomorrow (Saturday). Betty wishes Don would come now, to spare her time with Gloria, but Don insists on working.
Roger takes Joan into his office. With Margaret and Mona gone for the weekend, he wants to take Joan to a Broadway show. Joan starts talking about The Apartment, she’s angry about their relationship and noncommittal about the weekend.
Joan’s roommate Carol shows up at Joan’s office at 10:30, upset. She reveals she’s been fired after covering for her boss. Joan wants to take Carol out to shake off the gloom; Carol doubts she’ll cheer up but Joan insists they go out and meet some “real bachelors.”
That night, Joan and Carol prepare to go out. Carol confesses her love for Joan, which she’s felt since college, and which brought her to New York to follow Joan. Joan acts like she doesn’t understand, saying they should go out and forget about their hard day.
Joan and Carol have gotten a hotel room and invite two men they’ve met upstairs. Joan asks “Franklin” to change the light in her room, leaving Carol and the other guy alone. He kisses Carol and she says they can do “whatever you want” with a look of defeat.
Joan arrives at the office with Franklin. She is there in response to Mr. Cooper’s call. He tells her what happened to Roger in person (see Roger) and she begins sending telegrams to all clients, holding back tears as she takes dictation.
As they leave, Cooper tells Joan she could do a lot better, adding “Don’t waste your youth on age.” She looks haunted.
Having been put off by Joan, Roger suggests to Don that they pick up girls to celebrate the holiday weekend; Don says he’s going to the shore, but Roger insists they at least party “tonight’ (Friday) and tells Don “I can use you as bait.” He wants to go to an internal casting call as a good place to pick up girls; anticipating a call for twins.
Salvatore, Ken, and Paul are flirting with the twins at casting. Roger and Don come in; Roger pulls rank and the other guys leave.
Roger tells Eleanor and Mirabelle they’re hired and invites them upstairs for a celebratory drink. Up in Roger’s office, they drink. They remark on the heat; the air conditioning is shut off at five, and they’re all visibly sweating.
Roger is taken with Mirabelle’s skin, he brings Eleanor over to touch it, then, to the discomfort of all concerned, tries to get the two to kiss. Don and Eleanor both want to leave, but Roger is insistent, and so Eleanor and Don dance a little while Roger kisses Mirabelle.
Eleanor kisses Don, but he’s not that interested. While Roger rides Mirabelle (in her underwear) like a horse, Don and Eleanor leave. In the outer office, Eleanor declines Don’s offer of a cab and says she’ll wait for her sister. She asks Don to wait with her. Inside, Roger, his head in Mirabelle’s lap, compares her to Margaret and wonders why Margaret is so angry. They begin more serious kissing.
In the outer office, Eleanor comes on to Don, again he’s not interested. Mirabelle calls for Ellie; Roger has had a heart attack. He’s conscious and in pain. Don says “call an ambulance and then leave.” Don stays with Roger, walks him out with the EMTs. Roger calls for Mirabelle; Don grabs him by the hair, slaps him and says, “Mona! Your wife’s name is Mona.”
Don is with Roger in Roger’s hospital room. Roger questions the existence of a soul, wonders why he lives the way he does, and both men look panicky and afraid. Mona comes in and Roger begins to cry, telling Mona sobbingly how much he loves her. Margaret wants to see Roger; he doesn’t want to let her see him in this condition, but Mona insists and Don calls her in. Margaret hugs her father. Don stands outside the door, looking in as they all three embrace.
At the office, the gang watches a Kennedy commercial, which is light and catchy. Next there’s the Nixon ad; dull and plodding. With Roger, they discuss campaign strategies. Pete wants mud, but the only secret is Kennedy’s womanizing, which they agree isn’t a problem for his image.
Don says there’s a story of a self-made man versus a silver spoon, and that story should be told; he sees himself in Nixon. Roger counters that positive campaign advertising doesn’t work as well as negative.
Abe and Rachel Menken are coming in to sign off on the rollout; Roger wants Don in the meeting and reminds him to behave.
The Menken’s meeting is bumpy, with Abe uncomfortable. Don talks about moving forward, and Rachel demands they respect her father’s past. Ultimately the plans are approved.
Pete goes into Don’s office, refers to Peggy as “Howdy Dowdy,” and says they lost the Dr. Scholl’s account. Don says to Pete, “The day you sign a client is the day you start losing him.” He acts cheerful until Pete leaves, then dumps everything off his desk. Peggy comes in, sees the mess; Don rips up the client file and asks Peggy to get rid of it.
Don goes to Roger, who is getting a haircut in his office, to tell him they lost the client. Roger quotes the “day you sign a client” back to Don, who doesn’t buy it.
That night, Don calls Betty from the hospital (see Roger), waking her. Betty offers to come home to be with Don, and is concerned about Mona. Then she starts bitching about Gloria again, angry that her father is pretending her mother never existed. Her thoughts about her mother seem to parallel Don’s thoughts about Roger. Betty asks Don to make sure he eats and sends her love to Mona.
Pete shows up at the hospital. The two of them watch a Kennedy commercial in the waiting room.
It’s late and Don shows up at Rachel’s door; she’s in a robe and nightgown. She got the telegram and knows what happened, she asks “Are you okay?” and Don answers “No.”
Rachel gets Don a drink, offers to get better doctors for Roger. Don is a wreck. She is sympathetic towards him. Don grabs Rachel, kisses her. She pushes him off. He asks her to sit with him. She does.
Don talks about the feeling of being close to death. He says he feels like she knows everything about him. He kisses her and she rebuffs him again. Again he says that he feels the urgency of the present; “This is all there is, and I feel like it’s slipping through my fingers like a handful of sand.” She resists, then kisses him. They lay down on the couch, he stops and insists she say she really wants this; Rachel says “Yes please,” and they make love.
Afterwards, naked and embracing, Don tells Rachel his life story. “You told me your mother died in childbirth. Mine did too. She was a prostitute. I don’t know what my father paid her but when she died they brought me to him and his wife. And when I was ten years old he died. He was a drunk who got kicked in the face by a horse she buried him and took up with some other man I was raised by those two sorry people.”
He looks like he will weep. She kisses his hair.
Pete and Peggy
Pete and Peggy have a tense conversation; he begins by being chatty but she is cool and tries to ignore him. He grabs her arm and forces the conversation, which goes as follows:
Pete: Peggy, dear, I think I understand what this is about, but you’re not being professional right now.
Peggy: I cannot believe I am in this conversation.
Pete: You think this is easy for me?
Peggy: I don’t know. I don’t know if you like me, or if you don’t like me. I’m just trying to get along here. And every time I walk by, I wonder if you’re going to be nice to me, or cruel.
Pete: Cruel? What am I supposed to say? I’m married.
Peggy: Yes, I know. And I heard all about how confusing that can be. Maybe you need me to lay on your couch to clear that up for you again.
Pete: That’s some imagination you’ve got. Good thing you’re a writer now. What do you need me for?