LANE PRYCE, PLAYED BY JARED HARRIS, PUT HIS COMPANY IN FINANCIAL JEOPARDY (PHOTO-AMC)
This evening, after the hot dogs and hamburgers, I re-watched last night's episode of "Mad Men" and noticed a detail that may be key to the discovery of Lane Pryce's check forgery and theft of company money. When Lane wrote the check to himself, tracing Don Draper's signature, he took that check from the last page of the company checkbook, a classic embezzler/forger's trick. Who regularly examines the last page of the checkbook? (Note: if anyone else has access to the checkbook, you should).
In last night's story, when Lane comes to Joan Harris to recommend she ask for a partnership in SCDP -- in return for having sex with the Jaguar executive -- Joan is sitting at her desk, writing checks from that checkbook. Eventually, maybe next week, maybe in the season finale, she will reconcile the check book and come across the check, or she could get to the last page of the checkbook and notice the missing check. When she looks close at the cancelled check, and of course she will, she'll notice it's made out to Lane for a large sum and signed by Lane and Don. What will she do then?
Lane may have done her a favor by recommending she demand a partnership, but his forgery and theft, and the $50K in extended bank credit he also secretly arranged, could put the company in jeopardy, rendering her 5% meaningless. So, if this scenario plays out, will she go to Don or to Lane? I want to see Joan have the cards as a way of showing her partners who has hand. I want her to prevail, start her own agency and hire Peggy as creative director.
Bigger question: why am I writing about fictional characters in a real world way? I guess it's a credit to the quality of "Mad Men." My scenario could be all wrong, but it's plausible. And that's where series creator Matthew Weiner excels.