I kind of forgot Anna existed, since a. she’s dead and b. the whole Dick Whitman thing is wayyy under the bridge drama-wise. I didn’t even realize the kids still don’t know. Don flies off the handle at first, but in the end Betty is denied “the thrill of poisoning [Megan and Don] from fifty miles away.”
The most interesting scene is when Sally tells Betty about the mature way the Anna situation was handled over at the apartment. When yelling at Don and Megan, she talked about her mother as someone she could trust who would never lie, which really shocked me given their rocky history. When Sally later explains what she learned about Anna to her mother, her cool demeanor suggested she knew what Betty was up to, and wasn’t giving her any satisfaction. I assumed Sally already knew her mother was evil, but maybe it’s just coming to her now.
The ending scenes show us both Draper household Thanksgivings. At Betty’s, the family is going around the table saying what they’re grateful for. Betty’s contribution: “I’m grateful that I have everything I want and no one else has anything better.” Okay, a little competitive, but a step in the right direction. Betty’s tiny Thanksgiving plate – one bite of stuffing! – made me want to cry/gorge myself immediately.
At Don’s, some of Megan’s actor friends (who are poorer, bitterer, and more successful at acting than she is) are coming to Thanksgiving. The room is stifling hot, but Don can’t open the window because there’s a “smog emergency.” This is apparently something that actually occurred around Thanksgiving that year, and killed hundreds of people in the city. Metaphor alert! I thought the poison was coming from within Don himself, but maybe it’s from the outside world (Betty, SCDP). Thoughts?
The name of this episode is “Dark Shadows,” from the name of the really crappy soap opera Megan’s friend was cast in. Literally spearking, the only dark shadows are when Roger and Jane are doing it in her unlit apartment. Metaphorically, perhaps they’re referring to the shadows cast by Don’s two ex-wives, Anna and Betty. Given the title, I expected a much darker episode. Instead, it was mostly given over to the immaturity of our aging stars, and their obsession with beating their younger counterparts – Betty v. Megan, Roger v. Pete, Don v. Ginsburg.
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