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Six Month Leave
Six month leave.jpg
Season 2 Episode 9
Air date 28 September 2008
Written by Andre Jacquemetton
Maria Jacquemetton
Matthew Weiner
Directed by Michael Uppendahl

A Night to Remember
The Inheritance


Freddy Rumsen strikes out during a pitch meeting with his team; ever-eager Pete seizes a chance to exploit an opportunity at the office; an old friend is the beneficiary of Don's loyalty; Sara Beth proves to be a welcome ally for Betty. The characters react to Marilyn Monroe's death.


Don Draper, still on the outs with Betty and staying at the Roosevelt Hotel, picks up the morning paper to find that Marilyn Monroe has died; the news has left many of Sterling Cooper's secretaries weeping. "We're lucky Playtex didn't go for that Jackie/Marilyn campaign", comments Peggy Olson.

Don is called to a meeting involving the company's blood drive. Ken asks what the prize is for a high rate of participation. "Helping another human being," replies Don. As the meeting ends, Don begs off when Harry invites him and Betty to an NBC event.

Back in Don's office, Jane, who deduces something is amiss after receiving a phone call from Don's daughter, says she hopes he's noticed that she's discreet. "I don't know you at all, and this is personal and it's not up for discussion," he responds.

At a dress rehearsal before a presentation to executives of Samsonite luggage, Salvatore Romano asks Freddy Rumsen for a drink, and hesitantly accepts a glass full to the top with whisky from Freddy. Freddy then pees in his pants and passes out. A shocked Pete Campbell deputizes Peggy to act as Freddy's stand-in.

Sarah Beth Carson

Asleep on her sofa near an empty glass of wine, Betty Hofstadt is awakened by Sarah Beth Carson, who has come to borrow a dress. Sarah Beth tells Betty she's been having wild dreams about Arthur Case since she saw him fighting with his fiancé.

"Not you too," Roger says after spotting Joan lying on his couch, mourning Marilyn, saying, "This world destroyed her." To Roger, Marilyn was a movie star who had everything and threw it away. Joan warns him that one day he'll lose someone who is important to him, and it will be "very painful."

Don returns home with the kids after an outing and tells Betty that if her mind is made up about their breaking up, he's not going to try to change it. "I thought you can talk anyone into anything," she replies.

At work the next morning, Don comes across a bag of shirts (from Menken's) that Jane has bought for him. "I thought you could use a few more for your rotation," she says. Freddy drops by Peggy's office and learns that the Samsonite executives loved the presentation.

In Roger's office, Don learns from Pete and Herman Phillips about Freddy's mishap of the day before. Don disagrees when Roger says Freddy must be fired, but Roger insists. "We'll say it's a six-month leave of absence" from which Freddy won't return. The plan is to tell Freddy over dinner that evening.

Betty's housekeeper, Carla, offers some marital advice. Betty won't discuss her personal life but does take Carla's recommendation to get outdoors. She heads to the stables, where she runs into Arthur Case and invites him to have lunch on Thursday with her and Sarah Beth. Meanwhile, at the Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency blood drive, Paul, Harry, Sal, and Ken make fun of Freddy's mishap. Don tells them to stop gossiping like teenage girls.

Over pre-dinner cocktails, Roger informs Freddy he's through at Sterling Cooper. Freddy contends that clients love him and that his indiscretion was not a concern, but despite Roger's fond reminiscences about Freddy's war service and copywriting skills, the verdict remains the same. "Let's make a night of it", Roger says after Freddy accepts his fate, and the men eventually find themselves at an illegal gambling club.

Roger says at the club that he can tell Don's marriage is on the rocks. Don maintains that there's nothing to talk about, but Roger persists, asking, "Do you want to be right, or do you want to be married?" While Roger is tweaking him for being so secretive, Don walks over to Freddy's gaming table, where, it turns out, Jimmy Barrett is playing. Jimmy greets Don with "Well, if it isn't the man in the gray flannel suit," and Don decks him with one punch.  

Roger and Freddy whisk Don out of the club. After a fond goodbye Freddy heads home in a cab, and the conversation turns serious as Freddy says he doesn't know what he's going to do, and he doesn't know who he is if he doesn't have the office to go into every day. They part ways and Don and Roger end up at another bar. Don still doesn't want to discuss his home life but admits that rather than feeling bad about being separated from Betty, he mostly feels relieved. He tells Roger that it's important to move forward.

The next day Don promotes Peggy to Freddy's position but chastises her for not telling him about Freddy's incident sooner, leading him to go into his meeting with Roger "blind".  Peggy leaves Don's office and heads straight for Pete to chew him out for tattling on Freddy. Pete refuses to feel bad about the situation, and congratulates Peggy on her promotion, commenting that perhaps she will have Freddy's office.

Arthur surprises Sarah Beth when he arrives for lunch, as Better had not told Sarah Beth that she invited Arthur.  Betty, who is at home making cookies with the kids, never displays any intention of showing up and Arthur and Sarah Beth dine and drink together without her. Mona Sterling barges into Don's office later that afternoon, angry because Roger, inspired by Don's pronouncement at the bar about moving forward with his life, is leaving her for a secretary. When Mona storms out, Jane breaks into tears and Roger quickly comes to comfort her.

Pointing to Jane, Don says to Roger, "I want her off my desk," and he loses yet another secretary.


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Seasons of Mad Men
Season 1 • "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" • "Ladies Room" • "Marriage of Figaro" • "New Amsterdam" • "5G" • "Babylon" • "Red in the Face" • "The Hobo Code" • "Shoot" • "Long Weekend" • "Indian Summer" • "Nixon vs. Kennedy" • "The Wheel" •
Season 2 • "For Those Who Think Young" • "Flight 1" • "The Benefactor" • "Three Sundays" • "The New Girl" • "Maidenform" • "The Gold Violin" • "A Night to Remember" • "Six Month Leave" • "The Inheritance" • "The Jet Set" • "The Mountain King" • "Meditations in an Emergency" •
Season 3 • "Out of Town" • "Love Among the Ruins" • "My Old Kentucky Home" • "The Arrangements" • "The Fog" • "Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency" • "Seven Twenty Three" • "Souvenir" • "Wee Small Hours" • "The Color Blue" • "The Gypsy and the Hobo" • "The Grown-Ups" • "Shut the Door. Have a Seat" •
Season 4 • "Public Relations" • "Christmas Comes But Once a Year" • "The Good News" • "The Rejected" • "The Chrysanthemum and the Sword" • "Waldorf Stories" • "The Suitcase" • "The Summer Man" • "The Beautiful Girls" • "Hands and Knees" • "Chinese Wall" • "Blowing Smoke" • "Tomorrowland" •
Season 5 • "A Little Kiss, Part 1" • "A Little Kiss, Part 2" • "Tea Leaves" • "Mystery Date" • "Signal 30" • "Far Away Places" • "At the Codfish Ball" • "Lady Lazarus" • "Dark Shadows" • "Christmas Waltz" • "The Other Woman" • "Commissions and Fees" • "The Phantom" •
Season 6 • "The Doorway, Part 1" • "The Doorway, Part 2" • "The Collaborators" • "To Have and To Hold" • "The Flood" • "For Immediate Release" • "Man With a Plan" • "The Crash" • "The Better Half" • "A Tale of Two Cities" • "Favors" • "The Quality of Mercy" • "In Care Of" •
Season 7 • "Time Zones" • "A Day's Work" • "Field Trip" • "The Monolith" • "The Runaways" • "The Strategy" • "Waterloo" • "Severance" • "New Business" • "The Forecast" • "Time & Life" • "Lost Horizon" • "The Milk and Honey Route" • "Person to Person" •