Season 5, Episode 11
The Other Woman
Don’s challenged by a pitch and Peggy contemplates a trip.
The Jaguar team riffs taglines in the SCDP conference room. Stan suggests “Jaguar: The mistress who will do things your wife won’t,” but Don reminds him “a client doesn’t want to hear the word ‘mistress.’” Peggy asks Don to sign off on a project but he snaps that she’s in charge of all other ongoing business until Jaguar is done. Peggy watches as Joan delivers a lobster lunch to the Jaguar team. Ken and Pete dine with Herb Rennet, head of the Dealers Association and a member of Jaguar’s selection committee. Herb suggests SCDP’s competitive standing might be improved if they arrange “an evening together” for him and Joan. At home, Megan studies a script for an audition. Don asks her advice on the “mistress” concept, but she responds, “Doesn’t being a mistress make the car immoral?” Don bristles and Megan leaves the room to continue memorizing. Pete tells Joan about Herb’s proposal. Taken aback, Joan wonders how Pete would feel if someone asked that of Trudy. Pete asks Joan how much it would take to convince her. “I don’t think you could afford it,” she says. Subbing in for Ginsberg while he works on Jaguar, Peggy attends a conference call with Chevalier Blanc. The company wants to pull the Hard Day’s Night ad but Peggy spontaneously comes up with a twist on the existing ad targeting women instead and wins the client over. Pete presents Herb’s proposal at a partners meeting, guaranteeing SCDP will lose the account if they don’t comply. Don spurns the idea and walks out, but the remaining partners reluctantly agree to offer Joan $50,000. They decide to withhold Christmas bonuses and extend their credit line to cover the cost. Don instructs the Jaguar team to ditch the mistress concept because it’s vulgar. Later, Harry praises Peggy’s work on Chevalier Blanc. She tells Don the client ultimately went with the same ad as before, only in Paris. Don says Ginsberg will take over once Jaguar is finished, prompting Peggy to snap, “I guess I’m not in charge of everything.” Don flings cash in her face and barks, “Here. Go to Paris.” Ken tries to comfort Peggy, saying that Don is just upset about Jaguar. “I don’t care,” she responds. Lane advises Joan to demand a 5% partnership stake in the company, using himself as a cautionary tale: “Three years ago, when I was essential to the future of this firm, I settled for much less than I needed.” At home, Pete reads to Tammy while Trudy watches from behind, smiling. On the way to her audition, Megan pays Don a surprise visit for sex in his office. “I want to walk in there with confidence,” she says. Pete tells Trudy he wants an apartment in the city, but she refuses. She informs him that “your love affair with Manhattan is over,” adding that they haven’t even been trying for a second child. At home, Joan argues with her mother Gail over the broken refrigerator. The next day, Megan tells Don she got called back for Little Murders and rehearsals begin shortly in Boston. “So you’re just going to leave for three months?” he says, “Well forget it.” She accuses him of expecting her acting career to fail. Joan tells Pete she wants “a partnership, not silent, comprising 5% of the business” for her night with Herb. Pete asks how to make the arrangements. “Do I have to do all of it?” Joan snaps. Ginsberg approaches Don with a new Jaguar concept, portraying the car as an unattainable woman: “Jaguar: At last, something beautiful you can truly own.” Don smiles. Over lunch with Freddy Rumsen, Peggy gripes about her exclusion from Jaguar. Freddy suggests she leave SCDP and offers to help. Pete tells Don about the arrangement with Joan. Don leaves the office and goes to Joan’s apartment to dissuade her. She thanks him and wishes him good luck on the presentation. The next day, Don presents the pitch to Jaguar. Herb smiles as Don unveils the tagline. The previous night, Joan joins Herb in a hotel room and they have sex. Later, at her apartment, Don arrives to advise her against going through with it. The next day at the office, Joan asks Don how the presentation went. “We’ll see,” he says. At her audition, Megan takes off her coat and is asked to turn around in a circle. She complies. Peggy meets Ted Chaough from CGC to discuss job opportunities and he praises her work. She writes her job requirements, “Copy Chief $18,000/year,” on a piece of paper and slides it across the table to him. Chaough crosses out $18,000 and writes $19,000 – “If this is your last meeting.” Megan tells Don the callback didn’t go well. “If I have to choose between you and that, I’ll choose you, but I’ll hate you for it,” she says. Don assures her that he doesn’t want her to fail, and they kiss. In Roger’s office, Don locks eyes with Joan when she joins the partners gathered as Roger receives a call from Jaguar confirming they’ve won the account. The office erupts in celebration. In Don’s office, Peggy informs Don she’s accepted a job with Cutler Gleason and Chaough. Don thinks she’s asking for a raise and attempts to negotiate salary, but Peggy tells him it’s not about money. She holds back tears as he kisses her hand. Peggy walks out of the office and smiles as she waits for an elevator.