Mad Men (2007–2015)
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The Good News 

Don flies to Los Angeles to visit Anna before his New Year's vacation to Acapulco, but her bad news influences him to cancel his vacation and return to New York, where he discovers that Lane has problems of his own.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Betty Francis (credit only)
Ken Cosgrove (credit only)
Sally Draper (credit only)
Bertram Cooper (credit only)


Plans are being made for the New Year's break. Don, heading to Acapulco, makes a twenty-four hour stop in Los Angeles to visit with Anna, who's broken her leg which is in a cast. The two spend the day with Anna's grown niece, Stephanie. Alone with Stephanie at the end of the evening, Don tries to seduce her, but his seduction plans change when she gives him some sobering news. Don has to figure out what to do with the news before he leaves Los Angeles. Because of the news, Don changes his New Year's plans. Back in New York, Joan and Greg want to start a family, but have to find time when both are free. Lane denies her the two days she wants in January when Greg is off, after which she expects he will be headed to Vietnam at the completion of basic training. Lane's attempt to make it up to Joan which goes slightly awry and a mishap at home combined with the underlying stress of trying to find the time with Greg finally take their toll emotionally on Joan. And Lane was supposed to go ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




TV-14 | See all certifications »




Release Date:

8 August 2010 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


Although credited, Robert Morse (Bertram Cooper), Aaron Staton (Ken Cosgrove), January Jones (Betty Draper Francis) and Kiernan Shipka (Sally Draper), do not appear in this episode. See more »


The pattern of fresh paint on Anna's wall changes between consecutive shots. See more »


Joan Harris: Sandra, everyone makes mistakes, but the fact that you're the kind of person who cannot accept blame is egregious.
Sandy Schmidt: I don't know what that means.
Joan Harris: It means I can't believe I hired you.
See more »


References The Howdy Doody Show (1947) See more »


Pacific Coast Highway
Written by David Carbonara
Performed by David Carbonara'
Courtesy of Silva Screen Records
By Arrangement with Lions Gate Records Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

New Year in the sun
1 May 2011 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Don Draper's plans for the end of the year is a trip to Acapulco. To our surprise, he makes a stop to see Anna in California. He finds her at home with a broken leg. Anna's sister Patty comes in with her daughter, the beautiful Stephanie, who stays behind with her aunt. Anna's husband was the real Don Draper, whose identity Dick Whitman stole after an incident during the war.

After dinner, Don took Stephanie home. He makes a pass at the young woman, who clearly rejects his advances. Stephanie goes on to tell Don about Anna's cancer, a condition that evidently caused her fracture. Angry, Don has an argument with Patty the following day. Don is too overwhelmed in finding the news. Instead of going to Acapulco, he heads back home to New York.

Joan goes for a consultation with her Ob/Gyn doctor. He assures her it will not be any problem in spite of the previous abortions she had. She is in perfect health, after all. At the office she goes to Lane Pryce to ask for a few days off to be with her husband Greg, who is on duty during the holidays. He denies her request. After Lane tells her she cannot have the time, he feels guilty and sends her roses, but they come with the message intended for his wife, who is in London. A furious Joan goes to his office and throws the flowers at Lane.

Don returns to the office late at night. He finds Lane there as well. They talk and Don offers to take him to dinner and a movie. During the course of conversation Lane reveals his wife had left him and is staying in London. Don tries to remedy the situation by calling two female escorts. They end up at Don's apartment where each man take a woman to a bedroom.

The third episode of the season was directed by Jennifer Getzinger. The screenplay was written by Jonathan Abrahams and Matthew Weiner, the creator of "Mad Men". The end of 1964 has a different meaning for Don who is showing signs of fatigue, complicated by the shock of knowing that Anna, the woman he owes so much will be dead soon. Jon Hamm, Melinda Page Hamilton, Cathy Lotz and Susan Leslie have some good moments in the California sequence. Jared Harris and Christina Hendricks added pleasure to our enjoyment in watching this chapter.

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