Monday, August 24, 2009

It’s Monday and I’ve got Mad Men on my mind

No, not men that are mad, but “Mad Men”, a show on AMC that started its 3rd season last week. The program is ultra cool, suave and a critic’s darling. Plus it won a bunch of awards last year, a sure sign that it’s probably a good show and it's not on a “Big 3” network. (Are they even the “big” 3 anymore?)

I personally didn’t hop on the hip bus until after the first season, when I bought the DVD. And then I actually missed the entire 2nd season live. Thanks goodness for on-demand. The point is, these days you can start watching a show even after a few seasons, the catching up part is virtually painless.

For those of you not familiar with the show, ( and it seems most people are not, as it’s not exactly the highest rated in TV land), “Mad Men” takes place at a fictional advertising agency in New York City in the early ‘60’s. The stories circle around Don Draper, played by the mad hot Jon Hamm, and his office staff, family and “friends”. I think the “Mad” stands for Madison Avenue initially, and just the shear madness of the era later on. Just a theory.

New York City is a grand dame in the show and it’s a very interesting commentary on the times. Women are getting stronger in the workplace, for the most part as secretaries, but the truth is good administrative assistants run a company underneath it all.

Elisabeth Moss, the former Zoey Bartlet on one of my fave shows “The West Wing” turns in a fabulous performance as a girl who wants to get out of the pool and into the boardroom with the boys. As an aspiring copywriter, nothing, and I mean Not A Thing, stops her from reaching her goals.

You’d think I’d identify with her; I myself worked in a male dominated business for some many years, putting up with some of the crap. And I’m trying to reinvent myself as a copywriter. But I really identify with the character of Betty, wife to the lead character Dan Draper. Her lonely suburban housewife feels more realistic than any of the characters, who become over-the-top caricatures every once on awhile.

The show is not for everyone, it's a bit dark but very stylistic…and if you aren’t a fan of vices you won’t like that EVERYONE freakin' smokes and drinks ALL the time…something I personally find a hoot, but I know some don’t.

But hey, it’s only a TV show. And if you like it enough, you can “Mad Men” yourself…loads of fun for those slow moments, when you could use a little madness. ☺

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