Mad Men is far from the most uplifting show on television.
But even viewers that have become hardened to its dismal portrayal of life in the 60s for Don Draper and company had to have grown misty-eyed this week, as lovable, closeted designer Salvatore Romano received his walking papers.
In a shocking scene from "Wee Small Hours," Sal was dressed down by Don for not giving in to a male client's advances; and then fired because Sterling Cooper couldn't afford to lose the account.
How did actor Bryan Batt feel about the way his character was treated? He told TV Guide:
"I do feel Sal felt very betrayed because there are many different options that could have come into play to save his job, but none of that was exercised. Don didn't do anything; he basically washed his hands and did not believe Sal when he told him the honest truth. It's the ultimate case of sexual harassment meets homophobia. Sal is completely innocent. He played by the rules, he did what he's supposed to do, and he gets punished for it. It's quite sad."
But will we ever see Sal again? Viewers were left with the image of him calling his wife, lying about being at work... while at a park, seemingly surrounded by gay men.
"I can't talk about future episodes, but so many people love the character and really identify with him and want to see more of his story," Batt said, adding:
"I would hope that Sal will come back. There's a million ways he can come back. [Creator Matt Weiner] is such a brilliant writer, so there's a plethora of opportunities."