Ladies Room (Mad Men)

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"Ladies Room"
Mad Men episode
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 2
Directed by Alan Taylor
Written by Matthew Weiner
Original air date July 26, 2007
Episode chronology
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"Smoke Gets in Your Eyes"
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"Marriage of Figaro"
Mad Men (season 1)
List of Mad Men episodes

"Ladies Room" is the second episode of the first season of the American television drama series Mad Men. It was written by series creator Matthew Weiner and directed by Alan Taylor. Weiner has stated that the interval between writing the pilot and the second episode lasted seven years.The episode originally aired on the AMC channel in the United States on July 26, 2007.


Don and Betty have dinner with Roger and his wife Mona at Toots Shor's restaurant. Roger discusses his childhood, but Don avoids the subject when asked about his own. He is similarly dismissive of Betty's questions about his past when they get home. Betty begins to have sporadic issues controlling her hands, eventually leading to a minor car accident. When a doctor finds nothing physically wrong with her, he suggests that she try speaking with a therapist. Don, not understanding how Betty could be unhappy, is opposed to the idea, but eventually relents.

Meanwhile, Peggy continues to adjust to life at Sterling Cooper. She fends off advances from several of her new co-workers, despite Joan's advice to enjoy the attention while it lasts. When Paul Kinsey gives her a tour of the offices, Peggy thinks she's found a friend, and is disappointed when he too attempts to seduce her.

Don and his copywriters discuss how to market deodorant to women. They discuss the question of "what women want" but are unable to find any definite answers. Don also looks to Roger and Midge, clearly upset about Betty's unhappiness. Meanwhile, Betty attends her first session with a therapist. There, she discusses her relationship with her late mother, and her insecurities about a new divorcee neighbor. The therapist remains silent throughout the session. That night, Don takes Betty out to dinner and gives her a watch as a gift. After they arrive home, Don calls Betty's therapist, who relays to Don everything Betty discussed during her appointment.

Cultural references

Don and Roger discuss Richard Nixon's campaign in the upcoming election. Paul reveals himself to be a fan of The Twilight Zone and does an impression of Rod Serling. Several characters watch the series People are Funny.


The episode received positive critical reviews from television journalists and critics. Alan Sepinwall, writing for New Jersey's The Star-Ledger, praised the episode for expanding the role of female characters, building on the characters established in the pilot, writing "the small details of how these characters are written and played gives [...] real meaning."[1] Andrew Johnston, writing for Slant Magazine was also impressed by the episode, comparing the series favorably to The Sopranos and praising Michael Gladis' acting in particular.[2]


  1. Sepinwall, Alan (July 26, 2007). "Mad Men: Ambivalent Women". The Star Ledger. Retrieved May 30, 2014. 
  2. Johnston, Andrew (July 27, 2007). "Mad Men Fridays: Season 1, Episode 2 "Ladies' Room"". Slant Magazine. Retrieved May 30, 2014. 

External links