Everyone (including, let’s be truthful, me) made fun of Bush for calling himself ” The Decider.” Typical Bushism—guy can’t speak, right?

In Long Weekend, there’s a Kennedy commercial on TV that Don and Pete watch. In it, Kennedy mocks Nixon for saying that as Eisenhower’s veep, Nixon made a lot of decisions and was a part of policy in the White House (sort of how Obama has mocked Clinton).

Anyway, in the commercial, a journalist refers to President Eisenhower as “the decider.” Which is sort of the opposite of an anachronism; it was treated as a coinage when Bush said it, but turns out, not so much.

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In Long Weekend, we see Don and Rachel connecting the dots. Maybe the first time I saw the episode his arrival at her door came from nowhere, or maybe I was just taken with their mutual attraction, but on closer examination, they are connecting at a deep level.

We arrive at Sterling Cooper in a Nixon campaign meeting. Don wants to set aside current ad ideas and tell “the story” of Nixon. He calls Kennedy “a recent immigrant who bought his way into Harvard,” On the other hand,

“Nixon is from nothing. A self-made man, the Abe Lincoln of California, who was Vice President of the United States six years after getting out of the Navy. Kennedy, I see a silver spoon. Nixon, I see myself.”

He sees himself. He sure does; he came from nothing, went into the Army, came out a new man (literally) and in a short time (six years?) he was a big success.

Later the same day, there’s a Menken Department Store meeting. There, Don kind of poo-poos Abe (there’s that name again) Menken’s history of coming from nothing (like Lincoln; like Nixon). Rachel takes umbrage:

“Excuse me, this is not some phony story you people print in your Fourth of July circulars. My father actually started with nothing and he made it into everything we’re talking about. Who here can say that?”

Don. Don can say that. And although Rachel doesn’t know that about Don, he must feel like she’s looking right through him, and like he and she are the only two people in that room who understand each other.

So of course, that’s the night they sleep together. But more importantly, that’s the night he finally tells the truth about himself to another human being. And it’s so important, so powerful, that I offer it here in its entirey:

“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 came from nothing. She understands. She kisses his hair.

“I like redheads. Their mouths are like a drop of strawberry jam in a glass of milk.”

Forgive me, MM writers. I love you all.

But this episode, about which I have so much more to say, seems to have a big fat continuity issue.

Thursday #1
It is the end of the workday. Roger speaks to his wife about the weekend plans. He is then told by Bertram Cooper that the Nixon boys are coming in at the end of the week. Joan has a bag packed and is taking a train with her roommate Carol for a weekend away. No mention that she is taking a Friday off, but okay so far.

How do I know it’s Thursday? Don says to Peggy, trying to make sure she’s not working too late, “Just because tomorrow’s Friday, doesn’t mean I expect to be pulling your head off the keys in the morning”. (God, that line is a mouthful!)

That night, it’s drinks for Don and Roger, and then the disastrous dinner at the Draper’s.

Thursday #2
The next morning, Roger offers Don a bottle and an apology. At lunch Pete exchanges a chip-and-dip for a 22-caliber rifle. (more…)