Mad Men has jumped another month ahead in time, and last night's episode was set in August, with the 1968 DNC as the historical timestamp jumping out from the background. Below, a look at what we saw in last night's episode, and how it all compares to real life. Warning: some may consider these things spoilers! You have been warned.
LA vs. NYC
Last night's episode touched on the never-ending LA vs. NYC debate—with Don, Roger, and Harry visiting Los Angeles. The Carnation guys tell them, "To be frank, we've worked with New York firms before... with it, comes an attitude, as if to say we're not working hard out here. I can assure you, it's very much to the contrary." On the flight back to New York, Roger tells Don, "You know what I learned: New York is the center of the universe. We could send a landing craft out there but, they don't understand what we do..." Don replies, "Or they understand it thoroughly.
But man, the tacos, booze, joints, Joplin, and Jeannie C. Riley party really made a good case for living in 1960s LA, no?
MEGAN DRAPER-SHARON TATE
The Megan Draper is Sharon Tate conspiracy theory got furthered last night, when Megan shows up in Don's drowning dream and says she's pregnant (Tate was pregnant at the time of her death). She also says it's giving them a "second chance"—a theme that has been coming up since the end of season 5, when Nancy Sinatra's "You Only Live Twice" plays out the final episode.
DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION
Chicagoist has more on the 1968 DNC, which was firmly planted in the background of last night's episode. As the footage from inside of the event airs, Don notes what's not shown in prime time: war debates, and cops hassling protesters. This shows chaos both inside and outside of the convention:
CARNATION INSTANT BREAKFAST
Carnation Instant Breakfast was introduced in 1964. A year before Don & Co.'s meeting with the company, their full page color ad read: "You should eat a good, nourishing breakfast. Or you should drink one. New Carnation instant breakfast makes milk a meal too good to miss. Each glass delivers as much protein as two eggs, as much mineral nourishment as two strips of crisp bacon, more energy than two slices of buttered toast, and even Vitamin C. Lots of great flavors. In your cereal section. From Carnation."
But then in 1970, the company had "promised to stop making what the Federal Trade Commission called unwarranted nutrition claims in advertising Carnation Instant Breakfast. The commission's complaint alleged, among other things, that the advertisements falsely implied that Carnation Instant Breakfast had the nutritional benefit of two fresh eggs, two slices of bacon, two slices of buttered toast and an orange or a glass of orange juice." Womp womp.
Earlier in the season Joan's friend was visiting to interview with Avon, a competitor of who was her current employer: Mary Kay. This time, Joan is working to land the Fortune 500 account for the agency, which just ended its "Ding Dong Avon Calling" ad campaign (that ran for over a decade, ending in 1967). The campaign was called "one of the most deeply ingrained brand identities of the past century." Peggy and Joan pitch the idea of Avon coming to offices, noting, "There's no doorbell in an office." Here's an album Avon made that year for retailers:
Hash was big in 1968, and in last night's episode Don tries it for the first time at a party in LA. In real life that year, John Lennon and Yoko Ono were busted for drugs and "marched through the crowds of photographers outside and were taken by police car to Paddington Green." Over 200 grains of hashish, a cigarette case containing traces of hashish, and a cigarette rolling machine with traces of cannabis were found in the apartment, which they were just crashing at—it was Ringo Starr's flat at 34 Montagu Square, London.