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Episode 2: Love Among the Ruins

Ann-Margret belts out the title song of the film musical Bye Bye Birdie. Ken, Sal, and Harry, viewing the clip with Peggy in the conference room, find the star's routine sexy. A prospective account, Patio Cola -- Pepsi's new diet soda -- wants a campaign with a similar look, but Peggy questions whether this is the best way to target female consumers.

Pete brings representatives of Madison Square Garden into Sterling Cooper. They’re seeking to outmaneuver opponents of their plan to raze Penn Station -- deemed by many an architectural masterpiece -- and replace it with their arena. Paul alienates the businessmen by siding with the protesters.

Lane announces that the London office has lost the Campbell's Soup UK account. The real problem, however, is that Sterling Cooper never scheduled a meeting with the company's American operation. "Perhaps I should drag Burt Peterson in and fire him again?" quips Roger when Lane demands an explanation.

Don and Betty join Lane and his homesick wife, Rebecca, for dinner. "I didn't want to be there anymore than you did," Don tells Betty on the drive home. Her main preoccupation, though, is her father: He's sick, and his companion, Gloria, has left him. Betty wants her dad to visit the Drapers for a few days.

In Roger's office the next day, his daughter, Margaret, tells him she doesn't want Jane at her wedding. Mona, his ex-wife, offers a compromise: Roger and "June" can host their own table. "So you get the in-laws and I get Siberia?" asks Roger, who makes it clear he wants Jane to attend.

Lane tells Don that Betty was charming at dinner. She lifted his wife's spirits "inestimably." Lane asks Don and Roger to have lunch with Edgar Raffit of Madison Square Garden to undo the damage from his encounter with Pete and Paul.

Betty's father, Gene, arrives at the Draper home with her brother, William, and his family. Gene has brought lunch, including a sandwich for Gloria, though according to William he knows she's gone and is just being dramatic.

Roger, waiting with Don at the restaurant for Raffit, blames Mona for turning Margaret against him. "All of a sudden I could give two craps about that wedding," he says. "All I want to do is win."

A moment later, Raffit arrives and Don suggests that he stop fretting over public opinion: It shows a guilty conscience. Sterling Cooper could help Raffit change the conversation about Penn Station's destruction to one in which Madison Square Garden is the cornerstone of New York's renaissance. Raffit likes the approach but doesn't want "the communist" (Paul) handling the account.

At the Draper home, William proposes putting Gene into a nursing home, and Betty accuses William of going after their dad's house. Nursing homes are "for people who don't have families," she contends.

That night, William tells his wife, Judy, that Betty and her father fought constantly -- something his sister forgets. Family is important to Betty, Judy replies.

At her apartment in a nightgown, Peggy brushes her hair into a flip and mimics Ann-Margret's rendition of "Bye Bye Birdie" in front of a mirror.

Lane informs Don that London wants Sterling Cooper to drop Madison Square Garden as a client. It's not worth the projected billings. Don argues that the arena provides the agency's entrance to the upcoming World's Fair and thirty years of Garden-related business. "Why the hell did you buy us in the first place?" Don asks when Lane says London's decision is final. “I don’t know,” Lane replies.

Peggy discusses the Patio campaign with Don. Shouldn't the fantasy be a female one, she asks. "Men want her. Women want to be her," Don says of the Ann-Margret dynamic. "I'm sorry if that makes you uncomfortable." Peggy dismisses the approach as phony, but Don reminds her that she's not an artist. "You solve problems," he says.

Roger, leaving the office with Peggy, asks her what her father would have to do for her to not want him at her wedding. "My father passed away," Peggy replies. "There you go," Roger says. "You'd do anything."

When Don arrives home, Betty says William has given her two options: Put Gene in a home or have Judy care for him. Don pulls William aside and delivers an ultimatum. William will support his father financially, and Gene will live with Don and Betty. Gene's house will remain untouched. William acquiesces. "So the animals are running the zoo," Gene remarks after learning his fate.

At a bar, Peggy meets a Brooklyn College engineering student. They end up kissing on his sofa. "I can't," says Peggy when he can't produce a condom, though she suggests there are sexual alternatives. "This was fun," she says as she departs a few hours later.

Meanwhile, the sound of sirens and then noises in their kitchen awaken Betty and Don, who discover Gene pouring booze down the sink. "The heat is on,” Gene says. “We gotta get rid of the stuff."

At her school, Sally takes part in a Maypole dance celebrating springtime and renewal. A fellow parent takes a family photo that includes the Drapers and Gene.

At work another day, Peggy enters Don's office to discuss the Pampers diapers account.

Mad Men Season 3

View photos from Episode 302, "Love Among the Ruins"

Guest stars:
Bertram Cooper - Robert Morse
Lane Pryce - Jared Harris
John Hooker - Ryan Cartwright
Sally Draper - Kiernan Shipka
Mona Sterling - Talia Balsam
Margaret Sterling- Elizabeth Rice
Allison - Alexa Alemanni
Gene Hofstadt - Ryan Cutrona
Judy Hofstadt - Megan Henning
Rebecca Pryce - Embeth Davidtz
Edgar Raffit - Kevin Cooney
Charlie - James Immekus
Bobby Draper - Jared S. Gilmore
Brooks - Derek Ray
Ralph Buckland - Jeremy Scott Johnson
Arnold Merriman - Brian Carpenter
Man #1 - Mark Brandon
College Boy - Bill Finnigan
Scott - Austin Trace

Writer: Cathryn Humphries & Matthew Weiner

Director: Lesli Linka Glatter

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Next Episode: My Old Kentucky Home

Mad Men episode 303 main

The writers fight off boredom when they are forced to work after hours. Roger hosts a party while Joan and Greg host a party of their own. Sally has a run in with Grandpa.

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