Sunday, December 30, 2012

Playlist 2012 – 10 Favorite Songs of The Year

I must admit that this year unlike any other would be the first where the majority of my favorites were listened to via online.

I remember way way back in 1999, Everything but the Girl’s “Lullaby of Clubland” was the first song I ever heard online via the RealPlayer music player. Since then, the downloads, remixes, etc. have been varied. By 2008, The 80s-influenced retro-dance group, Lemon would be the only artist I would listen to exclusively on Facebook because they did not have a CD released….In 2011, I listened to selections from Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” on YouTube. It was the first time I had previewed an entire album online exclusively. Normally, I would just wait until I saw a few videos, bought or borrowed a CD, etc. These times do change, eventually….

Earlier this year, I signed up on Spotify and started listening to Pandora again and set up, Live365 and TuneIn through my phone and Roku. Thanks to that decision, I discovered a host of artists I otherwise would not have listened to including Polica, Santigold, Metric, Tame Impala, Lemongrass, Rooney, Mike Snow and a great selection of music influenced by Chillout and Ibiza.

So, here are some of those songs and artists I discovered that have stood out for me and made the rotation on my playlists this past year:


 Adele – Skyfall (Skyfall Motion Picture)


 Alabama Shakes – I Ain’t The Same (Boys & Girls) 



 Alicia Keys – Girl on Fire (Girl on Fire)


  Avant featuring Keke Wyatt – You & I (You & I)



  Beach House – Myth (Bloom)



 Florence + The Machine – No Light, No Light (MTV Unplugged 2012)



 Hans Zimmer – The Fire Rises (Dark Knight Rises Soundtrack)


 Lana Del Rey – Video Games

Lemongrass - Got It On The Dancefloor (Papillon)


 Passion Pit – Take A Walk (Gossamer)


Photo: Bruce Lee Style

Bruce Lee Style


Don't Forget The Songs That Saved Your Life


Zig Ziglar: 10 Quotes That Can Change Your Life

 Zig Ziglar: 10 Quotes That Can Change Your Life
Below are 10 quotes from Zig Ziglar that have the power to completely change the direction of one’s life.
10) “Remember that failure is an event, not a person.”
9) “You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.”
8 ) “People often say motivation doesn’t last. Neither does bathing—that’s why we recommend it daily.”
7) “There has never been a statue erected to honor a critic.”
6) “People don’t buy for logical reasons. They buy for emotional reasons.”
5) “Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.”
4) “If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.”
3) “A goal properly set is halfway reached.”
2) “Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.”
1) “If you can dream it, you can achieve it.”
 Kevin Kruse is a NY Times bestselling author and motivational speaker. Get more success quotes and tips from his newsletter at  and check out keynote video excerpt. His new book, Employee Engagement 2.0, teaches managers how to turn apathetic groups into emotionally committed teams.

When Life Gets Harder - Level Up


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Kingsington Journal: November 22, 1963 – The Assassination of John F. Kennedy

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, was assassinated at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time (18:30 UTC) on Friday, November 22, 1963, in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas.

Kennedy was fatally shot while traveling with his wife Jacqueline, Texas Governor John Connally, and the latter's wife Nellie, in a Presidential motorcade. The ten-month investigation by the Warren Commission concluded that Kennedy was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald acting alone and that Jack Ruby acted alone when he killed Oswald before he could stand trial. The Commission's conclusions were initially supported by a majority of the American public. However, polls conducted from 1966 to 2004 found that as many as 80 percent of Americans have suspected that there was a plot or cover-up.

Contrary to the Warren Commission, the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) concluded that Kennedy was probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy. The HSCA found both the original FBI investigation and the Warren Commission Report to be seriously flawed. While agreeing with the Commission that Oswald fired all the shots which caused the wounds to Kennedy and Connally, the HSCA stated that there were at least four shots fired and that there was "...a high probability that two gunmen fired at [the] President." The HSCA did not identify any other person or group involved in the assassination besides Oswald, but they did specifically say the CIA, the Soviet Union, organized crime, and several other groups were not involved, although they could not rule out the involvement of individual members of those groups. Kennedy's assassination is still the subject of widespread debate and has spawned numerous conspiracy theories and alternative scenarios.

 Read More:


Video: Walter Cronkite announces death of President John F. Kennedy


 JFK 3 Shots That Changed America – trailer


 JFK - Movie Trailer ( 1991 )



Sunday, September 30, 2012

20 Encouraging Quotes to Level Up Your Life

Encouraging quotes from others that have come before us are one of the best ways that we can level up our lives. I have always been a fan of encouraging quotes, especially when I needed a kick in the butt to get things done and make thing happen in my life and work. I found that reading encouraging quotes at the beginning of my day or week was a great way to keep me motivated as it was something I could use to remind myself of what I was trying to accomplish in my life. 

If you are in need of some motivation to level up your life today, try out one of these 20 encouraging quotes to get your day started.

    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”   - Mark Twain

    “Get going. Move forward. Aim High. Plan a takeoff. Don’t just sit on the runway and hope someone will come along and push the airplane. It simply won’t happen. Change your attitude and gain some altitude. Believe me, you’ll love it up here.” - Donald Trump

“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.”  - Sylvia Plath

Read More:


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Playlist: September 11th Memorial

The September 11th Memorial Playlist:

The attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001 could not stop the resolve of those who helped and endured the tragedy. Across the country and the world, many found healing in artistic expressions of illustrations, paintings, poetry and music. Here is a collection of music that stands as a memorial to those fallen, those injured, those people who are/were heroes and to the ones that continue to this day affected by that tragic day.

U2 - One (Studio)

Bruce Springsteen - Into The Fire - 9/11 WTC Tribute Video

Bruce Springsteen - You're Missing - A Tribute to 911 Victims

The Hollies - He Aint Heavy, He's My Brother - 9/11 Tribute

Ennio Morricone - Four Friends - The Untouchables Soundtrack

Interpol – NYC

Moby - Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad

Maurice Ravel - Pavane for Dead Princess

Moby - In This World


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Quotes: "To Kill a Mockingbird" - Harper Lee - 1960

Celebrating The Publication of Harper Lee's "To Kill A Mockingbird"

Here are some notable quotes from the bestselling book provided by

Quotations from "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee, 1960

It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 11


They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions... but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 11, spoken by the character Atticus


 I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 11, spoken by the character Atticus


She seemed glad to see me when I appeared in the kitchen, and by watching her I began to think there was some skill involved in being a girl. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 12


So it took an eight-year-old child to bring 'em to their senses.... That proves something - that a gang of wild animals can be stopped, simply because they're still human. Hmp, maybe we need a police force of children. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 16, spoken by the character Atticus


"I think I'll be a clown when I get grown," said Dill. "Yes, sir, a clown.... There ain't one thing in this world I can do about folks except laugh, so I'm gonna join the circus and laugh my head off." "You got it backwards, Dill," said Jem. "Clowns are sad, it's folks that laugh at them." "Well, I'm gonna be a new kind of clown. I'm gonna stand in the middle of the ring and laugh at the folks." ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 22


The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom, be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their resentments right into a jury box. As you grow older, you'll see white men cheat black men every day of your life, but let me tell you something and don't you forget it - whenever a white man does that to a black man, no matter who he is, how rich he is, or how fine a family he comes from, that white man is trash. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 23, spoken by the character Atticus


I think there's just one kind of folks. Folks. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 23, spoken by the character Scout


The sixth grade seemed to please him from the beginning: he went through a brief Egyptian Period that baffled me - he tried to walk flat a great deal, sticking one arm in front of him and one in back of him, putting one foot behind the other. He declared Egyptians walked that way; I said if they did I didn't see how they got anything done, but Jem said they accomplished more than the Americans ever did, they invented toilet paper and perpetual embalming, and asked where would we be today if they hadn't? Atticus told me to delete the adjectives and I'd have the facts. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 7


When a child asks you something, answer him, for goodness' sake. But don't make a production of it. Children are children, but they can spot an evasion quicker than adults, and evasion simply muddles 'em. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 9, spoken by the character Atticus


Bad language is a stage all children go through, and it dies with time when they learn they're not attracting attention with it. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 9, spoken by the character Atticus


Why reasonable people go stark raving mad when anything involving a Negro comes up, is something I don't pretend to understand. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, Chapter 9, spoken by the character Atticus


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Movie Posters: Star Trek (2009)



Star Trek (2009)


Friday, June 22, 2012

ESPN: 30 for 30: The Two Escobars

The Two Escobars - Directed by Jeff Zimbalist and Michael Zimbalist

While rival drug cartels warred in the streets and the country’s murder rate climbed to highest in the world, the Colombian national soccer team set out to blaze a new image for their country. What followed was a mysteriously rapid rise to glory, as the team catapulted out of decades of obscurity to become one of the best teams in the world. Central to this success were two men named Escobar: AndrĂ©s, the captain and poster child of the National Team, and Pablo, the infamous drug baron who pioneered the phenomenon known in the underworld as “Narco-soccer.” But just when Colombia was expected to win the 1994 World Cup and transform its international image, the shocking murder of Andres Escobar dashed the hopes of a nation.

Through the glory and the tragedy, The Two Escobars daringly investigates the secret marriage of crime and sport, and uncovers the surprising connections between the murders of Andres and Pablo.


WATCh The Two Escobars - Documentary [Full Length Film]
(1hr 45min)


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Profile Playlist: New Order – 1981-2005 - 10 Songs by New Order

New Order are an English rock band formed in 1980 by Bernard Sumner (vocals, guitars, synthesisers), Peter Hook (bass, synthesisers) and Stephen Morris (drums, electronic drums, synthesisers) – the remaining members of Joy Division, following the suicide of vocalist Ian Curtis – with the addition of Gillian Gilbert (keyboards, guitars, synthesisers). In 1993 the band broke-up amidst tension between bandmembers, but reformed in 1998. In 2001, Phil Cunningham (guitars, synthesisers) replaced Gilbert, who left the group due to family commitments. In 2007, Peter Hook left the band and the band broke-up again, with Sumner saying in 2009 that he no longer wishes to make music as New Order. The band reunited in 2011 without Hook, with Gilbert returning to the fold and Tom Chapman replacing Hook on bass. During the band's career and inbetween lengthy breaks, bandmembers have immersed themselves on number of solo projects, such as Sumner's Electronic and Bad Lieutenant; Hook's Monaco and Revenge and Gilbert's and Morris' The Other Two.

By combining New Wave and electronic music, New Order became one of the most critically acclaimed and highly influential bands of the 1980s. Though the band's early years were shadowed by the legacy and basic sound of Joy Division, their immersion in the early 1980s New York City club scene increased their knowledge of dance music and enabled them to incorporate elements of that style into their work. The band's 1983 hit "Blue Monday", the best-selling 12-inch single of all time, is one example of how the band transformed their sound.

New Order were the flagship band for Factory Records. Their minimalist album sleeves and "non-image" (the band rarely gave interviews and were known for performing short concert sets with no encores) reflected the label's aesthetic of doing whatever the relevant parties wanted to do, including an aversion to including singles as album tracks. The band has often been acclaimed by fans, critics and other musicians as a highly influential force in the alternative rock, dance and rave music scenes.

Read More:




Temptation '87


Blue Monday (Original 12" Version)


The Perfect Kiss


True Faith


Touched by the Hand of God (Original 12")


Vanishing Point


World (The Price of Love) Live in Chicago 1993 - Alternate video done by Warner USA for New Order's single WORLD using the Stephen Hague radio edit.




Waiting for the Sirens' Call


Monday, June 11, 2012

Movie Poster: Dredd (2012)

DREDD (2012)
A remake of the forgettable Judge Dredd (1995) movie. I read Judge Dredd comics when I was a kid and know the character well enough to hope justice will be served with this film.


PLOT: The story of Dredd takes place on a fictional Earth created as a result of the Atomic Wars. Survivors of this period are living in Mega-Cities, which protects its citizens from the Cursed Earth, a radioactive desert environment populated by mutants. The main story takes place in Mega-City One, where the police who are now called judges have the power to use police brutality to some extent to fight extreme murders. One man, Judge Dredd (Karl Urban), a senior law enforcement officer, teams up with a cadet called Judge Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) to track down a terrorist organization lead by Ma-Ma (Lena Headey), who is responsible for selling a reality-altering drug called Slo-Mo.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

President Kennedy - Remarks - Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce, November 22, 1963

President John F. Kennedy, Remarks at the Breakfast of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce, November 22, 1963

Mr. Buck, Mr. Vice President, Governor Connally, Senator Yarborough, Jim Wright, members of the congressional delegation, Mr. Speaker, Mr. Attorney General, ladies and gentlemen:

Two years ago, I introduced myself in Paris by saying that I was the man who had accompanied Mrs. Kennedy to Paris. I am getting somewhat that same sensation as I travel around Texas. Nobody wonders what Lyndon and I wear.

I am glad to be here in Jim Wright's city. About 35 years ago, a Congressman from California who had just been elected received a letter from an irate constituent which said: "During the campaign you promised to have the Sierra Madre Mountains reforested. You have been in office one month and you haven't done so." Well, no one in Fort Worth has been that unreasonable, but in some ways he has had the Sierra Madre Mountains reforested, and here in Fort Worth he has contributed to its growth.

He speaks for Fort Worth and he speaks for the country, and I don't know any city that is better represented in the Congress of the United States than Fort Worth. And if there are any Democrats here this morning, I am sure you wouldn't hold that against him.

Three years ago last September I came here, with the Vice President, and spoke at Burke Burnett Park, and I called, in that speech, for a national security policy and a national security system which was second to none--a position which said not first, but, if, when and how, but tint. That city responded to that call as it has through its history. And we have been putting that pledge into practice ever since.

And I want to say a word about that pledge here in Fort Worth, which understands national defense and its importance to the security of the United States. During the days of the Indian War, this city was a fort. During the days of World War I, even before the United States got into the war, Royal Canadian Air Force pilots were training here. During the days of World War II, the great Liberator bombers, in which my brother flew with his co-pilot from this city, were produced here.

The first nonstop flight around the world took off and returned here, in a plane built in factories here. The first truly intercontinental bomber, the B-36, was produced here. The B-58, which is the finest weapons system in the world today, which has demonstrated most recently in flying from Tokyo to London, with an average speed of nearly 1,000 miles per hour, is a Fort Worth product.

The Iroquois helicopter from Fort Worth is a mainstay in our fight against the guerrillas in South Viet-Nam. The transportation of crews between our missile sites is done in planes produced here in Fort Worth. So wherever the confrontation may occur, and in the last 3 years it has occurred on at least three occasions, in Laos, Berlin, and Cuba, and it will again--wherever it occurs, the products of Fort Worth and the men of Fort Worth provide us with a sense of security.

And in the not too distant future a new Fort Worth product--and I am glad that there was a table separating Mr. Hicks and myself--a new Fort Worth product, the TFX Tactical Fighter Experimental--nobody knows what those words mean, but that is what they mean, Tactical Fighter Experimental--will serve the forces of freedom and will be the number one airplane in the world today.

There has been a good deal of discussion of the long and hard fought competition to win the TFX contract, but very little discussion about what this plane will do. It will be the first operational aircraft ever produced that can literally spread its wings through the air. It will thus give us a single plane capable of carrying out missions of speed as well as distance, able to fly very far in one form or very fast in another. It can take off from rugged, short airstrips, enormously increasing the Air Force's ability to participate in limited wars. The same basic plane will serve the Navy's carriers, saving the taxpayers at least $1 billion in costs if they built separate planes for the Navy and the Air Force.

The Government of Australia, by purchasing $125 million of TFX planes before they are even off the drawing boards, has already testified to the merit of this plane, and at the same time it is confident in the ability of Fort Worth to meet its schedule. In all these ways, the success of our national defense depends upon this city in the western United States, 10,000 miles from Viet-Nam, 5,000 or 6,000 miles from Berlin, thousands of miles from trouble spots in Latin America and Africa or the Middle East. And yet Fort Worth and what it does and what it produces participates in all these great historic events. Texas, as a whole, and Fort Worth bear particular responsibility for this national defense effort, for military procurement in this State totals nearly $1 1/4 billion, fifth highest among all the States of the Union. There are more military personnel on active duty in this State than any in the Nation, save one--and it is not Massachusetts-any in the Nation save one, with a combined military-civilian defense payroll of well over a billion dollars. I don't recite these for any partisan purpose. They are the result of American determination to be second to none, and as a result of the effort which this country has made in the last 3 years we are second to none.

In the past 3 years we have increased the defense budget of the United States by over 20 percent; increased the program of acquisition for Polaris submarines from 24 to 41; increased our Minuteman missile purchase program by more than 75 percent; doubled the number of strategic bombers and missiles on alert; doubled the number of nuclear weapons available in the strategic alert forces; increased the tactical nuclear forces deployed in Western Europe by over 60 percent; added five combat ready divisions to the Army of the United States, and five tactical fighter wings to the Air Force of the United States; increased our strategic airlift capability by 75 percent; and increased our special counter-insurgency forces which are engaged now in South Viet-Nam by 600 percent. I hope those who want a stronger America and place it on some signs will also place those figures next to it.

This is not an easy effort. This requires sacrifice by the people of the United States. But this is a very dangerous and uncertain world. As I said earlier, on three occasions in the last 3 years the United States has had a direct confrontation. No one can say when it will come again. No one expects that our life will be easy, certainly not in this decade, and perhaps not in this century. But we should realize what a burden and responsibility the people of the United States have borne for so many years. Here, a country which lived in isolation, divided and protected by the Atlantic and the Pacific, uninterested in the struggles of the world around it, here in the short space of 18 years after the Second World War, we put ourselves, by our own will and by necessity, into defense of alliances with countries all around the globe. Without the United States, South Viet-Nam would collapse overnight. Without the United States, the SEATO alliance would collapse overnight. Without the United States the CENTO alliance would collapse overnight. Without the United States there would be no NATO. And gradually Europe would drift into neutralism and indifference. Without the efforts of the United States in the Alliance for Progress, the Communist advance onto the mainland of South America would long ago have taken place.

So this country, which desires only to be free, which desires to be secure, which desired to live at peace for 18 years under three different administrations, has borne more than its share of the burden, has stood watch for more than its number of years. I don't think we are fatigued or tired. We would like to live as we once lived. But history will not permit it. The Communist balance of power is still strong. The balance of power is still on the side of freedom. We are still the keystone in the arch of freedom, and I think we will continue to do as we have done in our past, our duty, and the people of Texas will be in the lead.

So I am glad to come to this State which has played such a significant role in so many efforts in this century, and to say that here in Fort Worth you people will be playing a major role in the maintenance of the security of the United States for the next 10 years. I am confident, as I look to the future, that our chances for security, our chances for peace, are better than they have been in the past. And the reason is because we are stronger. And with that strength is a determination to not only maintain the peace, but also the vital interests of the United States. To that great cause, Texas and the United States are committed.
Thank you.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Movie Poster: Skyfall - James Bond (2012)

Skyfall - James Bond (2012)
Commentary: A homage to the films' opening scenes as well as showing the toughness of Daniel Craig's version of Bond.

In Skyfall, Bond's loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

13 Favorite Mad Men Episodes: Seasons 1-4

So many great episodes, it's truly hard to pick just 13.

This list features the episodes that stand out to me personally for reasons I point out in my commentary but in essence, every episode of Mad Men during this time will always be a collective masterpiece in television drama writing and history. The writers of Mad Men have crafted characters and stories that do not downplay politically incorrect perspectives, racism, taboos and the unflinching realism of the era. The series is not an idyllic view of the 1960's as some have come to label it and neither is it a complete commentary of the time. It is what some individuals have experienced for both the good and the bad. Mad Men is as real as it gets.


#1: Episode 1, Season 1: "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes"

Commentary: This was, of course, the first episode I watched due to the load of ads and buzz about the show. The second season was about to start and it  happened to be On Demand. Before the new season started, I decided to take a chance to watch the previous one. I didn’t really having any expectations though I was intrigued with the setting and look of the show. And I wasn’t sure where it was going plot wise; it just seemed like a typical "throw-back-to-an-era kind of series"…That is until the episode ended. It was pure genius! I didn't expect such a surprising finish as I watched Don Draper take a ride home. After all that I saw throughout the episode, I knew this show was a step above the rest. 

PLOT: "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" is the first episode of the first season of the American period drama television series Mad Men. It first aired on July 19, 2007 in the United States on AMC. "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" was written by creator Matthew Weiner and directed by Alan Taylor. The episode takes places in March 1960 in New York City, where renowned advertising executive Don Draper (Jon Hamm) struggles to maintain his stock with the cigarette company Lucky Strike. In his personal life, Don is having an affair with Midge (Rosemarie DeWitt), and the viewer doesn't learn about his wife Betty Draper (January Jones) until the end of the episode when he goes to his home in Ossining, New York. Meanwhile, Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) faces hostility amongst her peers after being hired as Don's secretary. Junior accountant Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) grows fond of Olson, ultimately pursuing a relationship with her.


#2: Episode 8, Season 1, #8: “The Hobo Code”

Commentary: This episode showed the complicated relationship between Don/Dick (as a child) and his family growing up in the Depression Era. It explained, in some ways, how Don/Dick wanted to be so much unlike his father and the varied reasons why he became someone else entirely.

PLOT: As Peggy's ad copy proves to be successful, her relationship with Pete becomes more complicated. Don spends the evening with Midge and her Bohemian friends. An encounter Don had as a boy with a hobo is told in flashbacks. Sal finds himself the object of interest of a female co-worker and a male client.


#3: Episode 10, Season 1: “Long Weekend”

Commentary: This would have to be one of Roger Sterling’s definitive episodes. It was a turning point for the character whose near death experience became the catalyst of major decisions (and episodes) yet to come.

PLOT: Betty is unhappy about spending the Labor Day weekend with her father's new girlfriend. After Sterling Cooper loses the Dr. Scholl's account, Roger attempts to cheer Don up by arranging for a pair of twins to spend the night with them. This results in Roger having a heart attack. Joan goes out for a night out on the town with her roommate, who reveals her secret love for Joan.

#4: Episode 12, Season 1: Nixon vs. Kennedy

Commentary: This episode revealed a great deal about Don/Dick and the events that lead him taking on the identity of Don Draper. The confrontation between Pete and Don was building up to this point. It was a test of their characters to either stand their ground completely or be defeated internally.

PLOT: Sterling Cooper's employees have an all-night office party to watch the 1960 Nixon–Kennedy presidential election results. Pete discovers that Don's real name is Dick Whitman, who officially died in the Korean War. When Don tells Pete that Duck Phillips will become the new head of accounts, Pete tries to use this knowledge to pressure Don into giving him the job. Flashbacks reveal how "Dick Whitman" became "Donald Draper".


#5: Episode 15, Season 2: Flight 1

Commentary: This episode presented the characters with a real tragedy (The crash of American Airlines Flight 1) and how they handle it. Pete’s father was killed in the crash and his reaction is a complicated mess of emotions. This episode also begins the plot outline for an interracial relationship and the civil rights movement.

PLOT: The crash of American Airlines Flight 1 affects several Sterling Cooper employees, most notably Pete, whose father is killed on the flight, and Duck and Don, who try to manage both existing and potential accounts with airline companies. Paul and Joan clash over his relationship with a black woman.


#6: Episode 22, Season 2: Six Month Leave

Commentary: This episode had it all: A tragedy/event in history (The Death of Marilyn Monroe), Conflict in the workplace (Roger leaves his wife for another woman), A firing (Freddy can’t hold his liquor…literally) and a one-sided fight (Don punches a big mouth). It’s a drama, tragedy and comedy all rolled into one!

Plot: Freddy Rumsen's alcoholism results in an embarrassing situation during a pitch meeting with his team, and he is let go from the agency. Roger leaves his wife Mona and takes up with Jane. The death of Marilyn Monroe saddens many of the women in the office.


#7: Episode 24, Season 2: The Jet Set

Commentary: OK. This episode is just weird and yet, brilliant. I swear every time I watched this it seems like I’m watching a episode of Twilight Zone. Its soooo surreal.

PLOT: Don's business trip to Los Angeles takes an unexpected detour when he falls in with a group of wealthy nomads; Peggy attempts to go on a date to a Bob Dylan concert with Kurt before finding out he's a homosexual; and Duck holds a secret meeting to help sell Sterling Cooper to British firm Putnam, Powell & Lowe.


#8: Episode 29, Season 3: “My Old Kentucky Home”

Commentary:  This is the beginning of the end….well, for the end of some things. Roger shows that his irrational decision to marry has made him into being a fool…a fool who sings “My Old Kentucky Home” in black face (WTF?)…..Don and Betty meet two people that would impact their future greatly. And Sally begins her accent to importance as a character.

PLOT: A mandatory overtime session leaves Paul, Smitty, and Peggy trying to stave off late-night boredom with cannabis. Roger's Kentucky Derby party leads to Don striking up a friendship with a folksy guest from another event, while Betty meets political advisor Henry Francis. Meanwhile, Joan and Greg host a dinner party of their own. Sally and Grandpa have a run-in.


#9: Episode: 32, Season 3: “Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency"

Commentary: The British Invasion of Sterling Cooper…and defeat….no pun intended.

PLOT: The agency's British owners visit Sterling Cooper to reassign Pryce to one of their India-based companies over the Independence Day weekend. A replacement for Pryce is introduced to the company. Ken, however, brings a riding lawnmower into the office. During a party to celebrate Joan's departure, a secretary, Lois Sadler, runs over the replacement's foot with the lawnmower, and as a result Pryce's transfer is called off. Meanwhile, after tendering her resignation, Joan finds out that her husband has failed in his career as a surgeon.


#10: Episode 37, Season 3: "The Gypsy and the Hobo"

Commentary: And, finally, Betty confronts Dick Whitman the man posing as Don Draper. Plus Joan’s husband doesn’t know what lies ahead with joining the army in…1963?!?

PLOT: As Don is about to leave with Suzanne, Betty confronts him about his identity theft, forcing him to reveal to her the truth about himself. Meanwhile, Roger meets a former client/lover who wishes to rekindle their affair, but Roger tells her he is happy with Jane. Joan discovers that her husband, after a failed attempt to switch to psychiatry, has joined the Army in order to ensure that he will become a surgeon.


#11: Episode 45, Season 4: “Waldorf Stories”

Commentary: This episode revealed how Don got hired by Roger in the first place. Well, played Mr. Draper, well played indeed…But it also reveals how the roles of the two titans of advertising have had their perspectives and actions reversed…We also get to see actor Jon Hamm being a little bit more comical but only when he as Don Draper is completely drunk…

PLOT: After winning a Clio Award for the Glo-Coat ad, an inebriated Don inadvertently pitches executives from Quaker Oats a slogan for Life cereal that came from Roger's wife's cousin. Peggy secludes herself in a hotel room with the firm's new artistic director Stan Rizzo in order to complete a campaign. Pete is upset when he finds out that his one-time rival Ken Cosgrove will be joining the firm. Roger dictates his memoirs, and his initial encounter with Don is recounted.


#12: Episode 46, Season 4: "The Suitcase"

Commentary: This episode reveals the vulnerability of Don in the end, as the tragic news he tries so hard to avoid finally becomes a reality, and how Peggy happens to be there for him when he needs her the most. Considered by many critics to be one of the best episodes of the series.

PLOT: An impending deadline leaves the firm in disarray, as Don makes Peggy stay late to work on a Samsonite ad, missing a birthday dinner with her boyfriend. That night, Don receives a call from Anna's niece confirming his fears about her health, while an intoxicated Duck visits the SCDP offices in search of Peggy. The second Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston fight serves as the episode's backdrop.


#13: Episode 48, Season 4: "The Beautiful Girls"

Commentary: This episode, I believe, is a spotlight to the women of Mad Men and their relationship to both Don and the company. In my opinion, it is one of the best of the series and gives Don’s daughter Sally conflicts and issues to sort out, resulting in some great acting on her part.

PLOT: Peggy is forced to face some unpleasant facts about a client's discriminatory business practices. Don and Faye's burgeoning relationship is tested when Sally runs away from home and turns up at the office. Roger tries to rekindle his affair with Joan. Miss Blankenship unexpectedly drops dead at her desk.