Well, I certainly can’t say ‘The Runaways’ was uneventful, because…….no seriously what the fuck? For people who claim that Mad Men is all stuffiness and period decor, I will henceforth direct them to this episode. Was it a good episode? I’m honestly not sure. For any other prestige drama I would say a recurring character slicing off their own nipple because a giant computer is turning him gay might be a ‘jump the shark’ moment, but there’s so much subtle character work, fantastic acting and solid direction nestled around that truly bizarre storyline, that it’s hard to not just sit back and appreciate that after six and a half seasons, this show is still capable of both moments of pure brilliance and pure absurdity.
*SPOILERS TO FOLLOW*
The imagery of Mad Men often walks a fine line between poetic and on-the-nose. But for an episode that opens and closes with Don in a foetal position, this one manages to stay just on the right side of pretentious. Todd VanDerWerff has a wonderfully in-depth analysis of all the Freudian underpinnings of this episode, so I’m just going to look at the episode on a more superficial level.