Both Lou and Peggy try to have their African-American secretaries reassigned on 'Mad Men'

Mad Men episode “A Day’s Work” honed in on Peggy’s Valentine’s Day woes and Don Draper’s efforts to get back in the ad game and attempt to finally open up to his daughter Sally.

Mad Men Recap

Don Draper (John Hamm), still on hiatus from Sterling Cooper & Partners, prepares for an 8 p.m. meeting by sleeping till noon, watching some Little Rascals, eating crackers and casually sipping some booze. It turns out his meeting is with Dawn (Teyonah Parris) from the office. She lets Don in on the action between the firm and Lou Avery’s (Allan Havey) dealings with Mohawk Airlines. After the meeting it seems like Don is more eager than ever to get back to work and stop getting information through Dawn and pitching through Freddie Rumsen (Joel Murray).

Trying to forget about her ex, Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) decides to throw herself entirely into her work. On her way up to the office, sharing an elevator with Ginsberg (Ben Feldman) and Stan (Jay R. Ferguson), Peggy takes the opportunity to compliment them on their work and to ask Stan to get some artwork to her by day’s end. When Stan lets on he has plans, Peggy tries to get herself an invite, which only gets her the reminder that it’s Valentine’s Day. Ginsberg caps off her embarrassment with a crude assessment of the solo evening she’s going to spend in her apartment.

Pete Campbell Feels Slighted

Out on the West Coast, Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) seems to have Chevrolet’s SoCal dealer’s association in the palm of his hand. When he shares the news with the SCP partners in New York, and his hopes that he could take the lead on the account, he’s summarily rebuffed. They want the business, but they want Bob Benson (James Wolk) to be their only link to Chevy. Unsurprisingly, Pete is livid following the phone call and questions whether or not he exists to SCP and says as much to his real estate gal pal Bonnie (Hayley McFarland) and Ted (Kevin Rahm).

When Peggy gets to her office, she spots a bouquet of roses outside of her office. Her secretary, Shirley (Sola Bamis), who’d left her desk to use the Xerox machine, wasn’t there to explain that they were actually from her fiance and for her. When she tries to explain, Peggy, with the beautiful bouquet on her desk, thinks that Shirley is only stumbling over her words because the flowers are from Ted. Instead of getting to the truth of the flower’s origin, Peggy immediately sends a message to her former love.

Peggy’s V-Day Embarrassment

Peggy grows increasingly irritated by the idea that Ted would be so presumptious as to send her the bouquet. She plops them on Shirley’s desk to get them out of her office. Later, however, Peggy decides she doesn’t want to see them at all and asks Shirley to throw them out. This forces Shirley to explain that they’re actually hers. In response, Peggy flips out at Shirley for having embarrassed her and walks off to Joan (Christina Hendricks) to have her reassigned.

When Sally Draper (Kiernan Shipka) arrives at the firm, she makes a b-line for her father’s old office only to find Lou Avery. She’s not sure what’s going on and doesn’t see any familiar faces, so she exits the firm. When Lou/Don’s secretary, Dawn, arrives, Lou chews her out for not stopping Sally from coming into his office and wants Joan to get her a new position. When Joan moves her to reception, Bert Cooper (Robert Morse) objects because “people can see her from the elevator.”

Unable to find her father at the office and stranded in New York City without a purse, Sally goes to Don’s apartment – but he’s not there either. Don is out to lunch with Dave Wooster, trying to get a feel if he’s still a guy other agencies would pick up in a heartbeat. He wades through the rumors with Dave and finds out that Jim Hobart (H. Richard Greene), who’s also dining at the lunch spot, would want him at his firm.

Don & Sally Grow Closer

When he gets back to his apartment, Don finds Sally. He lies to her about having been at work and then offers to lie to her school about her whereabouts that day and drive her back to campus. Sally lets him know that she knows he’s lying about being at work and yells at him about how she was afraid that when she went to his apartment she was going to find Sylvia, the neighbor Sally had seen him having sex with.

After some awkward silence, Don stops at a diner, where he tells Sally the truth about his work situation. He opens up to her like he never had before, detailing his meltdown and also sharing a bit about his marriage to Megan (Jessica Pare) and his feelings about California. He also suggests that her whole story about a friend’s parent’s funeral was bogus, as was the lost purse story – all a ruse to see him. He’s right, and his truth-telling at the diner proved to make the trip worth her while. “Happy Valentines Day. I love you,” she says to him when he dropped her off at school.

Mad Men airs Sundays on AMC at 10/9c.

– Chelsea Regan

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