5

It's actually from a dialogue of one episode of AMC's Mad Man (7th Season, E6), spoken by Peggy somewhat acidly to Don when he entered her office room.

I just can't understand what does she mean in this sentence. "white horse" must be metaphoric here I guess, isn't it? But what is Peggy going to say in this sentence?

Anything to do with "a prince on white horse"? If that is the case, then she is satirizing him?

  • 3
    I'm not familiar with the program so I can't be sure, but this is almost certainly an allusion to the prince-on-a-white-horse trope. If so, yes, she is sarcastically implying he's a cad. – Esoteric Screen Name May 20 '14 at 6:14
  • Now I think she maybe saying, "Do you want to act as a perfect hero here?" – dennylv May 20 '14 at 6:25
6

A slightly fuller quote is the following:

Peggy (speaking to Don): Did you park your white horse outside? Spare me the suspense and tell me what your save-the-day plan is.

A man riding a white horse is a trope/myth/metaphor/expression for "the perfect man", such as "Prince Charming", "A Knight in Shining Armor", or "My Hero".

"Did you park your white horse outside?" doesn't have enough context to determine if it's flirtatious, ironic, pessimistic, optimistic, sarcastic, or even semi-literal -- a person who owns a white horse! It's difficult to tell exactly what this means unless one knows the characters, their history, etc (which I do not).

The writer is continuing to build her character and her relationship to Don. Peggy is asking Don how he's going to handle a problem, but she's using metaphorical language that they both understand. However, "spare me the suspense" and "save-the-day plan" are at the meta-level of identifying-the-trope. She is expressing her attitude about both him and the situation in a creative manner.

So she's the type of person (character) that can get away with referring to him in a metaphorically teasing manner - like a back-handed compliment. She might see him as someone who has saved-the-day before, but in any case, she's calling him out on his attitude or her belief about his attitude. But this can also signal a close relationship because she is free to say this. So while it's mild sarcasm, there may also be some bonding, friendship, or romantic undertones.

  • 1
    Can't help adding that given the era in which Mad Men is set, you could include the Lone Ranger in that list. Hi-Yo Silver! – peterG Aug 3 '16 at 14:45

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