Titled "Person to Person," the series finale, in large part, dealt with a theme tackled at other points throughout the series: exploring the life not lived. Here, however, each character seemed to finally stop searching for what was missing, and instead, embrace what felt most authentic at the moment.
Here’s what became of each of them:
Don panics and flees. He drives out west, where he meets a litany of people (veterans, a prostitute, a young man to whom he gifted his car) and tells nobody his whereabouts except for his daughter, Sally (Kiernan Shipka).
“I messed everything up. I’m not the man you think I am,” he responds, clearly breaking down. “I broke all my vows. I scandalized my child. I took another’s man’s name. I made nothing of it.” After telling her he only called to say goodbye, he hangs up, and is asked to join another seminar at the retreat.
There, he connects to a man who cries that he is boring, and so is his life. “You spend your whole life thinking you’re not getting [love]. People aren’t giving it to you,” he says. “Then you realize they’re trying. And you don’t even know what it is.” Don seems to recognize himself in the man. They sob and embrace.
Joan Harris: Though Joan is seemingly happy in Malibu with her new boyfriend Richard (doing cocaine, no less), she takes a meeting with Ken Cosgrove (Aaron Staton) who tells her that he’s looking for a producer to make industrial videos. She’ll need to find a writer too. Joan immediately thinks of Peggy Olson, and pitches her the idea of starting their own company. “Harris Olson. You need two names to make it sound real,” she says. “We won’t answer to anyone.”
Richard isn’t excited about the idea, and tells her that she has to choose between a relationship with him and her career. “I can’t just turn off that part of myself,” she tells him. “Good luck, Joan,” he responds, and he leaves her.
In the end, Joan is in charge of a company with two names -- hers: Holloway Harris.
Peggy Olson: After Joan pitches the idea of starting their own company, Peggy has trouble grappling with the idea and turns to her good friend Stan Rizzo (Jay R. Ferguson) for advice. It might be nice to be in charge, she muses. “You have such a rare talent,” he tells her. “Stop looking over your shoulder at what other people have.” She snaps at him and calls him a failure, causing him to leave her office, hurt.
However, after her conversation with Don, Peggy is clearly upset and calls Stan for support. She also apologizes to him for upsetting him earlier and tells him that she's not going to leave McCann. “Good, because I didn’t want you to leave,” he responds. “All I want to do is be with you. I want to be with you. I’m in love with you.” Stunned, Peggy sputters, “I don’t know what to say… I mean, I don’t even think about you.” But then, she realizes that she’s in love with him too. They kiss, and end up together.
Pete Campbell: Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser), jaded by New York City, takes a new job with Lear Jet in Kansas after all. But before he goes, he wants to say goodbye to Peggy. "I'm very happy for you," she tells him.
"Everyone's going to miss you who doesn't hate you for getting that big job."
"You'll be a creative director by 1980," he responds.
"Someday people are going to brag that they worked with you." At the end, we see Pete boarding a plane with his wife Trudy (Alison Brie), with whom he's reconciled, and their daughter.