The "Mad Men" Likability Index: Weight Watchers Was Much More Awkward 40 Years Ago

Betty struggles with her weight, Don struggles with feeling threatened at work, and Megan struggles with… nothing!

Last night’s episode was a bit of a snooze. Fights were stopped by good consciences. No one took acid. And no one cheated on their spouse! The best part was seeing what Weight Watchers programs were like back then — and confirming that canned cranberry sauce is one of those things that never changes. Onto the Likability Index.

I would like to explore why January Jones’s real-life pregnancy led to this fat plot on the show, which is only making Betty seem like an even worse person than she has in previous seasons. She’s gone from just plain crazy and mean to crazy and mean and kind of bulimic. She spends her days in Weight Watchers meetings with other bored housewives, which only encourage her to obsess over her weight while reminding her of how miserable her unglamorous life actually is. I’d hate her more if I didn’t feel so sorry for her. And I’d feel less sorry for her if her life took place 40 years later, when she could lose weight with an app instead of the saddest housewife club of America. Seriously, it was more embarrassing than performing poorly in a 90s Jazzercise class in a public park.
Likability score: 83%

I’m so glad Megan’s friend came over to tell her she’s not a real person since she sits around her apartment reeking of wealth, never wearing the same thing twice, and goes to acting lessons occasionally, while other actresses have to wait tables to survive — and take shitty parts in plays. People of privilege are easy to dislike and Megan —the most perfect high school cheerleader of them all — especially so: after she insults that friend’s potential acting job, she manages to make her believe she’s the enemy and gets her to apologize. Manipulative! Maybe she learned that trick from Don.
Likability score: 77%

So Don is feeling insecure, maybe because his hot wife’s hotness isn’t around to make him look good all day, and he has to go back to actually working if he wants to look good in the office. His move to undermine Ginsberg’s work was loathsome, along with petty, immature, and ignorant. Good managers ought to realize the good work of people below them reflects well on everyone and should be lauded rather than seen as a threat. After all, if Roger can get by with doing as little work as he has, what does Don have to be worried about?
Likability score: 74%

Peggy had one awesome line this episode, when she asks Roger why he bribed Ginsberg instead of her to work on the Manischewitz wine thing, and reminds him she did awesome stuff with his Mohawk Airlines job. She’s not Jewish, Roger tries to explain. She replies: “I’m not an airplane.”
Likability score: 96%

Roger’s major fuck-up this episode was asking Jane to his dinner with the Manischewitz people because she’s Jewish. Why would you invite your soon-to-be-ex-wife to a work dinner? It was also slimy of him to sleep with her afterward, though she also deserves blame for that. She needs to pick up a hobby or find a job so she’s less tempted to go to work dinners with Roger just so that she has something to do with her time.
Likability score: 72%

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