'Mad Men' Recap: Joan & Peggy Prove Anyone Can Be Bought for the Right Price

joan harris pete campbell mad men season five episode 11With Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce fully committed to getting the Jaguar account, some of the partners will stop at nothing. Even if it means entertaining the request of Herb Rennet, the sleazebag head of the Dealers Association and a member of Jaguar's slection committee. Herb apparently fell for Joan "Built Like a B-52" Harris at first sight and notes to Pete and Ken at a dinner that he'd just love to spend the night with her ... And if that was worked out for him somehow, it could influence SCDP's competitive standing. Gross!

But surprise, surprise -- Pete gives credence to the scumbag's request, marching on in to Joan's office and faux-sheepishly explaining the situation to her! Ugh, he is just the worst! Not even seeing him later actually spending time with his kid and reading her Goodnight Moon is enough to get rid of the thick layer of skeeze on Pete this week.


Joan says Pete "can't afford" what it would take to convince her to sleep with Herb for the leg up on Jaguar, and you'd think that would be that, Pete reports the situation at a partners meeting. Don thinks it's twisted, considering that she's a woman with a (soon-to-be ex?) husband in Vietnam and a baby at home, but somehow, he's the only one who feels this way. The other partners are a-okay with offering Joan $50K to do it. Wow.

But still. You wouldn't think she'd go for it. But after Lane floats the idea of her asking for a 5 percent partnership stake in the company, she begins to wrap her head around the idea. How much it could change her life ... and her son's life. And when she lays down the law for Pete, that there is no negotiation -- it's either she's a partner or it's not happening. That's it. The deal has been made -- and the deed was done ... before Don had the chance to tell her he wasn't onboard with the plan, and he didn't think she had to do it to win Jaguar. Sadly, his interference was too little, too late.

Meanwhile, Peggy's had enough of being underappreciated and kowtow to the boys of the copy department, and she ends up taking a meeting with another agency for a copy chief position. The Don equivalent over there even offers her a higher salary than she proposes. It's a deal!

Yes, Peggy's DONE with SCDP! Even as she gave her two weeks to Don, I couldn't help but think .... this can't possibly be for real, right? Will we follow her to the competing agency? Either way, SCDP certainly won't be the same without her. Something I'm sure everyone -- not just Don -- will realize sooner rather than later.

And the final deal? Jaguar, of course. Thanks to the genius creative pitch ("At last, something beautiful you can truly own.") and/or Joan's sacrifice, SCDP finally has their car ... But at what cost?

Can you believe the moves Joan and Peggy made this week?


Image via AMC

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