The 'Mad Men' season finale: Is another death on the horizon?
The fourth season of "Mad Men" comes to a close tonight. After watching a dozen episodes in which, among other things, Don Draper struggled not to dip completely into depression, Joan may (or may not) have aborted a baby she conceived with Roger and a few people have kicked the bucket (RIP Mrs. Blankenship), it seems like the conclusion may drop one or two bombshells.
And if some of the theories floating around the Internet right now are to be believed, that could mean more death.
The Week has compiled a nice round-up of all kinds of theories -- including some intriguing ones involving Walt Disney and the black-out of November, 1965 -- but let's just focus on the ones that involve the demise of major characters.
A blog called The Pre-Existential Suite has posted an item suggesting that Roger Sterling will commit suicide, which is a reasonable guess, except for the fact that Sterling strikes me as too vital a character to bite it at this point.
More alarmingly, Michael Ausiello suggests during Entertainment Weekly's TV Insiders podcast that young Sally Draper -- the daughter of Don and Betty, the same one who is neglected, mistreated and always won over by the offers of Beatles tickets -- actually might be the one who attempts to take her own life, which would indeed be a stunner. Part of his rationale is that Don eventually needs some reason to become a more regular part of Betty's and his kids' life again. A tragedy would act as a natural catalyst in that department.
But I don't see that happening either, if only because it's much too reminiscent of AJ Soprano.
But Ausiello makes a good point about Don getting back together, in some fashion, with his family unit. There's been something unnatural about watching Henry Francis roam around in the chilly, '60s decor of the Draper home. And as was made clear when Don ran into Midge during last week's episode, the guy doesn't belong in Greenwich Village. Personally, if I have to watch the handsome ad genius come home and sit at that depressing little desk by the window one more time, I might start drinking hard scotch at 10 a.m. myself.
If Weiner sticks to his plan to end "Mad Men" after season six, then after tonight, only 26 episodes remain. It's hard to imagine Don and Betty apart for all of those episodes.
So here's my bold prediction for the "Mad Men" finale. Glen -- who may not be as "bad" as Betty contends, but clearly is capable of some royally weird behavior -- will pull another of the attention-getting, break-in routines he resorted to in the second episode of the current season. Except this time, Henry will be there to catch him. In a moment of panic while attempting to escape, Glen will accidentally kill Henry.
The description of tonight's episode simply states, "Opportunity arises for Don and Peggy." We assume that could mean a career opportunity. But Henry dying and leaving Betty a widow ... well, that would be an opportunity of sorts for Don, too ... wouldn't it?
All right, I've made my cockamamie prediction. Now it's your turn: what will happen on tonight's "Mad Men"?
| October 17, 2010; 2:00 PM ET
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