Hang in there, Rog.
Mad Men is oh-so-slick. Sunday’s “The Chrysanthemum and the Sword” was yet another shining chapter in my favorite rich ensemble show and a particularly revealing episode for Roger Sterling. I like to describe the enjoyment I get from this show as similar to watching a slow motion car crash, as each character’s storylines cycle through discovery and personal tragedy. And Roger, god love him, is my favorite character.
Sadly, I think there’s a real sense of foreboding to Roger this season. He is of course as dapper as ever, but uncomfortable and out of place in the alien surroundings of SCDP (accentuated nicely by that psychedelic Rorschach blotch of an office). This most recent episode was an exceptional moment Thomas-esque raging from Roger. The moment when his face set after Pete Campbell brought forth Honda as potential clients and then Roger’s subsequent reaction was really heart wrenching. Already we’ve seen him exceed his past drinking habits, Jane has yet to make a good, doting appearance this season, and after the humiliating Christmas party with Lee Gardner Jr, you have to wonder how much further down the barrel Roger’s going to go. His world is being whittled away. Forcing his WWII trauma to the surface isn’t going to help matters. I can’t help but get the terrible feeling that Roger isn’t long for this world.
Who then will drop obscure Sydney Greenstreet references in my televisions? Here’s hoping they pull a bait and switch at the last minute.