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The Monolith

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The Monolith
Season 7 Episode 4
Air date 4 May 2014
Written by Erin Levy May
Directed by Scott Hornbacher

Field Trip
The Runaways


In California, Pete and Bonnie are seated at a restaurant, and Pete is talking about possible vacation destinations. Bonnie notices a man looking at her, and Pete rises to spot George Payton, an old friend. After some small talk about Pete and Trudy's divorce in process, and Pete's father-in-law's recent heart attack, George mentions that he is now employed by Burger Chef and suggests that SC&P should pursue that account.

In New York, Don walks into a seemingly empty office, but it is revealed that everyone is standing around at a company-wide meeting about the beginning of the installation of the new computer, in the space currently used as the creative lobby. Ginsberg demonstrates his frustration by attempting to move the couch from the lobby into the art department’s office. Don walks into his new office (Lane's old office), and when he picks up a dropped cigarette, he finds an old Mets pennant that had been stuck under a radiator.

Back in L.A., Pete and Ted are on a conference call with the partners (except Don), and Peggy is selected to run the account with Burger Chef, because "they will want a woman." They decide that Peggy will put Don on her team, since he isn't doing anything else. Lou seems displeased.

Burger Chef

Burger Chef Logo

Mona and Brooks, Margaret's husband, talk to Roger in his office. Evidently Margaret has left home ten days ago to join a commune upstate.

Don talks with Lloyd, the man in charge of installing the new computer. They talk about why people fear computers.

Lou invites Peggy into his office, and is clearly enjoying keeping her off-balance while he leads up to revealing that he is rewarding her by giving her a raise of 100 dollars a week. He puts her in charge of the Burger Chef account, ad tells her that Don will be on her team. She is a bit unnerved by this, but thanks Lou and shakes his hand. Peggy calls Don and a junior copywriter into her office, and tells them that she wants each of them to come up with 25 tags by Monday. Don is clearly seething inside, and when he returns to his office, he slams the door and throws a typewriter across the room. He then leaves the office, slamming the door again.

When Don returns to the office after a weekend has passed, his secretary hands him a folder full of Burger Chef research. He takes the folder, but does not meet with Peggy as scheduled. She sends the junior copywriter to get Don, but Don says "I can't make it," and sits at his desk playing solitaire. Peggy assigns the junior copywriter to come up with 25 more tags.

Roger and his ex-wife are driving upstate to get Margaret. It is revealed that their son-in-law is in jail, after he failed to get Margaret, and got in a fight in a bar instead.

Lloyd the computer installer comes into Don’s office to ask for a light for his cigarette. Don gives him a hard time, joking that despite all that technology, Lloyd can't create fire. Lloyd broaches the subject of advertising. Don asks Lloyd for more information, and learns that computers are a growth industry, it is clear that Don is setting Lloyd up for a pitch. After Lloyd leaves the office, Don goes to see Bert to talk about getting Lloyd's company as a client, but Bert shoots him down immediately, and puts him in his place. “You have a fundamental misunderstanding of what went wrong here,” Bert tells him. Don leaves angrily and steals a bottle of vodka from Roger's office. He starts drinking it straight from the bottle, but then pours out a soda can and puts the vodka in there instead. He flops down on his sofa.

Roger and Mona arrive at the commune. They learn that Margaret’s name is now Marigold.Mona and Margaret have an argument, and Mona starts to leave, but Roger gives Mona the keys to the car and tells her to leave. He has decided to stay and listen to Margaret/Marigold, and he will catch the train back to New York later.

Back in his office, Don wakes up on the sofa, obviously still soused. He gets up and makes a phone call. He invites the person on the phone to a Mets game.

At the commune, Rogers sits with Margaret/Marigold and her friends and smokes a proffered joint. They tell him about their voluntarist philosophy about work.

Don is with Freddie in his office. Freddie was the one Don called. Freddie tries to steer Don out of the office without his drunkenness being noticed, but Don spots Lloyd and confronts him. He says "You talk like a friend, but you're not." Freddy takes Don's arm and escorts him out. They pass Peggy's office. Peggy hears that they're going to the Mets game. Joan is leaving too, but she stops to talk to Peggy, who is clearly not pleased to see Don leaving work, and ignoring his assignment. “So they dropped him in my lap, hoping one of us would fail,” sighs Peggy. Joan replies, "if it makes you feel better, they probably didn’t think about it at all.”

Meanwhile Roger and Margaret/Marigold are laying down on some hay, looking up at the stars and talking about going to the moon. She says she is happy at the commune. He kisses her on the forehead and says goodnight, but then a fellow member of the commune comes to get Marigold for sex.

Freddie brings Don home to Don's apartment instead of to the Mets game. In the next shot, it is morning, and Freddie offers Don some coffee, and talks to him about his drinking. Don whines,“They finally gave me something to do and it was write 25 tags for Peggy." “Would you rather be in my position, bouncing from office to office?" asks Freddie. “Are you just going to kill yourself and give them what they want?”

Back on the commune, morning comes, and Roger tries to take Margaret/Marigold home. He picks her up, and they both fall in the mud. Seeing that violence won't work, he tells her that she needs to be there for her son Ellery. Margaret/Marigold retorts that he was not there for her, and that even her birthday gifts were selected by his secretary. Roger walks down the road, away from the commune.

Don shows up for work the next morning, and Peggy appears to have summoned up the nerve to confront him. “I’ll have your tags by lunch,” he tells her. She seems shocked, but pleased.


  • Closing song: “On a Carousel” by The Hollies.

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