‘Mad Men’ Review: “For Immediate Release”
‘Mad Men’ season 6 pitches its sixth episode of the season, “For Immediate Release,” as Don's outburst at a Jaguar client gives way to a bold new future for SDCP, and Pete finds himself in the awkward position of running into his father-in-law Thomas at a brothel.
Last week’s ‘Mad Men’ episode “The Flood” saw the tragedy of Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination weighing on everyone, while Peggy attempted to put an offer on a new apartment, so what will the newest episode bring?
Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Mad Men’ season 6 episode 6, “For Immediate Release”!
An accountant draws up forms for Pete, Burt and Joan to take the company public, but needs to keep the documents to look them over. Afterward, Pete compliments Joan on her worth to the company, valued at upwards of $1 million. Elsewhere, Roger beds a flight attendant named Daisy and convinces her to stay despite the occurrence of Mother’s Day.
In spite of their separation, Pete gets into bed with Trudy, but finds little in the way of warm embrace the morning after. Meanwhile Don entertains a visit from Megan’s mother Marie, as Arnold drops by to borrow some wrapping paper for Sylvia, their son Mitchell having come home for the holiday. Elsewhere still, Peggy and Abe revel in their new apartment, for all its poor condition and noisy neighbors.
Don arrives to the office the next morning to find Herb from Jaguar cancelled their dinner, but Roger reveals that Herb only said that to keep Pete from attending. Meanwhile at a partner’s meeting for Cutler, Gleason and Chaough, Frank Gleason reveals that he has prostate cancer, and will need the other partners to buy him out when he leaves. Back at SDCP, Daisy calls Roger to inform him of a flight delay for several important executives, and he grabs his coat.
While Megan and her mother prepare for the dinner, Megan signs some autographs for girls in her building and Roger arrives to the airport lounge and chats up a Detroit car executive. Don and the others arrive to dinner with Herb and his wife, noting that Roger doesn’t seem to be coming, while back at SDCP Burt explains to Pete that their shares will sell for $11 apiece, cause for celebration.
Speaking in French, Megan’s mother berates the stupidity of both Herb and his wife, before the ladies leave to allow Don and Herb to discuss business. Herb puts forth that a flyer designer from his dealership be brought in to consult on Don’s creative work for Jaguar, before Don hands him a business card of another SDCP employee who will handle the account from now on. Herb expresses his outrage at Don’s repeated insults, as Don gathers the others to depart, leaving Herb with the bill.
Don gets frisky with Megan when they return home, while Marie repeatedly hangs up on Roger’s calls to Don. Elsewhere at a brothel in celebration, Pete awkwardly sees his father-in-law Thomas with an African-American prostitute, and the two nervously acknowledge one another.
The next morning Pete expresses his nervousness to Kenny over the encounter, though Ken assures him his father-in-law wouldn’t compromise the mutually-assured destruction of the situation. Just then, Jaguar calls for Kenny, surprising them both. Don arrives to the firm looking for Roger, when Pete comes stumbling down the stairs screaming about Don’s latest antics costing them Jaguar, and simultaneously the IPO.
Don balks that he had no idea of the company going public, but Roger soon interrupts them both that he landed a shot at Chevy’s new car. The problem seemingly resolved, Don asks Joan to gather the creative time, but Joan fires back that Don’s actions with Herb made her own sacrifice to the man meaningless. Don gathers the creative team himself and urges them to begin developing ideas for the car, even without a picture of the vehicle.
Peggy enters Ted’s office to find him despondent about Frank’s leaving, and the pressure it places the company under, but when she praises his strength Ted surprises her with a kiss. Ted apologizes for the brash action, while back in Don’s building, Arnold Rosen gets on the elevator and announces that he quit his job after the hospital denied him the opportunity of a heart transplant.
The next morning Don and Roger wait at the airport for their flight to Detroit, while executives from Dancer taunt them over the apparent loss of Vick’s Chemical. Back at SDCP, Pete yells about his father-in-law ducking his calls, and vows to fix the mess himself. Roger learns of the fiasco over the phone, but decides not to tell Don, lest he shake his confidence.
Pete confronts his father-in-law in his office, as the man asserts that Pete isn’t good enough for his daughter. Pete points out that Thomas too had something to be ashamed of at the club, but Thomas denies any wrongdoing and urges Pete to leave. Later that night, Peggy protests the loud neighbors and constant work of their new apartment, but when Abe attempts to pacify her, she instead imagines him as Ted.
Unable to sleep in his hotel, Don ventures down into the bar, soon joined by a surprised Ted. Ted realizes that SDCP’s presence at the Chevy pitch likely means neither of them will get the account, a large corporation like Chevy likely to go with one of the bigger agencies. In a rare moment of bonding, Don and Ted agree to share their respective pitches, when Don has the inspiration that they should pool their resources and do the pitch together as a merged company. Teddy balks at first, but quickly follows Don’s inspired lead.
Trudy returns home to find Pete waiting for her, where he explains that he caught her father in a whorehouse. Refusing to believe the idea, Trudy throws him out and demands he take his things with him. Meanwhile, Peggy’s secretary calls her into Ted’s office, for which she touches up her makeup, but is surprised to find Don waiting in the office as well. Both Ted and Don gleam that they’ve decided to merge agencies, with many details yet to be decided, but that they want Peggy to write the press release. Still somewhat in shock, Peggy returns to her office and begins typing “For Immediate Release.”
Well, that certainly shakes things up, doesn't it? Frequently we've come to expect major 'Mad Men' transitions to occur later, if not at the end of a given season, but we're more than excited to see the CGC and SDCP stories merged together, for all the conflicted storytelling opportunity it brings. It was nice to see Don taken down a peg for his brash actions with Jaguar, particularly Joan's scathing rebuke, though once again the mighty Don Draper saved the day in the end
A bit less exhilarating to see was Pete's side of things as the character only seems ot grow more despicable the worse the state of his marriage gets. Given how center stage Pete has been in the most recent episodes, 'Mad Men' might do well to give a few fresh notes to the character, even with all the conflict sure to arise from the merger. All in all, the most exciting episode of the season to date, placed well within the season to stir things up in the second half.
Did you get your fill of moving ‘Mad Men’ drama? What did you think about Sunday’s episode “For Immediate RElease”? Check out all our other ‘Mad Men’ season 6 coverage here, and preview next week’s episode of ‘Mad Men’ season 6, “Man With A Plan” below!