Mad Men’s Betty Draper could be considered the antithesis of what one would consider to be a good, caring mother, at least by today's standards. She’s constantly telling her kids to “go upstairs,” “go watch TV” or once, to “go bang your head against a wall.”
So when the fourth season of the AMC drama began last night, we got more ammo for our arsenal painting Betty as, shall we say, a less than perfect parent:
While eating her first Thanksgiving dinner with her new in-laws, her mother-in-law asked Betty’s daughter Sally, “Don’t you like the food dear?”
Sally answered honestly, “No.”
“Sally Draper, that’s rude," said Betty, aghast. "You love cranberry sauce.”
To which Sally replied, “It’s got seeds in it.”
“How ‘bout the sweet potato?”
“I’m not hungry.”
“Look, there’s marshmallow,” said Betty as she forced a forkful of marshmallow-topped sweet potato into Sally’s mouth. Sally then pulled a Tom Hanks in Big by letting the food fall from her mouth back onto her plate as she gagged muttering, "I'm sorry."
Betty lied, said something about Sally having a fever and being "sick," and dragged her into the other room. Sally could be heard yelling, “Ow, stop pinching me,” as a door slammed.
Later in the episode, Sally tried to call her dad Don, who was living in a bachelor pad in New York City (as opposed to the suburbs where he used to live with his family before the divorce), to wish him a Happy Thanksgiving. The previews imply that it won’t be long before Sally’s practically begging to go live with Don to get away from her cold mother.
Although I despised her, Henry’s mom had a point when she said of Betty’s children Sally and Bobby, “I’ve raised children in my life Henry. They’re terrified of her.”
Image: Michael Yarish/AMC. Video clip from AMC via Jezebel.