Well that season seemed to go by quickly.
But what did it all mean?
Don's rotten tooth becomes too painful for him to handle and has to be pulled. Unfortunately for Don, tormented souls and regret can't be so easily extracted. With the guilt of suicides on his mind and the disappointment of not being able to truly control his world, Don returns to the place where he feels most comfortable. Boozing, smoking, and cheating. Because even though Don is a man who suffers his demons, he is also a man who finds ways to smother himself in his own needs so that he never has to reflect too much on his responsibility for the course of his life and how it has affected others badly. All he can really do is consider how much helping those he loves results in them leaving him. And so his chance encounter with Peggy is likely reflected in the final scene. Having just helped to make his wife's dreams come true, he awaits the dread of what is to come when she realizes she no longer needs him.
If I had to rate this episode, and an electric shock therapy treatment is in the cards if I don't, I'd give it:
85 out of 100
It sets up the future growth of the business while also foreshadowing the doom of Don's marriage, if not his life. It also leaves Joan and Pete dangling, neither sure what they could have done to head off their own regret. Peggy and Roger, on the other hand, seem to have found some kind of happy place for themselves. Whatever can Don do to destroy that next season? I'm sure he'll find a way.
If I had to rate this season, and a ghostly suicide beckons for it, I'd give it:
90 out of 100
It isn't the best of the series, and perhaps it is what some would call its worst, but saying MAD MEN has a "worst" season is like saying that peperoni pizza without extra cheese is worse than with extra cheese. I mean come on. It's still a damn good pizza!