Tag Archives: 60’s fashion

Mad Men Midseason Madness

9 May

I don’t know where it all went wrong, but I’m so glad it’s back to be right. Mad Men, that is. We are several episodes into the new season and I can finally say with confidence, Mad Men is actually GOOD again. Great even. I can’t get over how well written this season is, and how it actually keeps my attention, and doesn’t just drone on while I fold my laundry, or do a thousand other things around the house that never seem to get done. Mad Men is back, with a vengeance. I’m not sure what has changed: new writers? Jon Hamm directing? Perhaps it is the era we’ve found ourselves heading into, in the show. Whatever it is, it’s working, and if you aren’t watching it, you are missing out on something special.

The world became obsessed with Mad Men in the summer of 2007, and we continued to watch through every mistress, every cocktail, and every boring second we spent watching Pete’s life pass by. The first few years were something great, but still had its moments of drab. In the years just before the “quiet” writers’ strike, the show had become mundane, and I found myself just watching ’cause I always had. It’s like that show you watch on TV that would make a great movie, but then they drag it in to six seasons and suddenly there’s a polar bear on a remote island and you question whether or not the writers are sober, EVER, writing this crap. The style has always been there, the fascination with the past, and watching the events up to JFK’s assassination unfold were nostalgic and gripping to relive for some. But let’s be honest: Mad Men had become “old hat”. The outfits seemed to come in repeat. The arguments were the same. Roger still womanizing, Don still hating his life with Betty but somehow still making children, and Peggy, poor Peggy, always be a side character and not getting her fair share of spotlight. The highlight for most was Joan and her curvy attitude and bright hair. It definitely wasn’t Pete’s sweatiness that brought people back every week. Why does that guy always look so greasy??? Sure, Mad Men had it’s moments of excitement. I mean, I don’t think I’ll ever forget the time Roger had a heart attack with one of the twins and Don had to slap his face to remind him his wife’s name was Mona. I still snicker when I hear that one replay in my head. What is it about men and twins?

I recently heard someone say that they couldn’t watch Mad Men because of all the sexism. They said it really bothered them and they just couldn’t stand to watch it replay on TV. I should’ve told her to take a walk around. We do live in Texas after all. C’mon! You’re telling me the sexism, (which to me is few and far between, not to mention funny at times), on the show is too much for you to handle, but living in the deep south doesn’t bother you…at all? If anything I think Mad Men has been a beacon, a little light shed on how men and women settled into what they thought were their roles. My stone cold example lay in this past week’s episode. Don “let” Megan quit her job at the agency because she wanted to follow her dreams. If he were any kind of A-typical 60’s man, shouldn’t he have told her to take off her shoes and get in the kitchen? Instead he and her were working side by side, something which he thoroughly enjoyed. I do believe it broke his heart a little when she quit, but he also understood the importance of letting her follow HER dreams, and not just be in his. He didn’t want her ‘to wind up like Betty, or worse, her mother.’ While Don has his faults, I think he’s shown everyone that he appreciates having a woman in the office to challenge him. He does and always has with Peggy. He believed in her and gave her an opportunity when no one else would. She stands up to him and puts him in his place when he needs to be put there, which is often. Ok, I get it, all the women are secretaries, and they all wear dresses, and most aspire to be housewives. Isn’t this still something we see every day anyway? And something we definitely see a lot south of the Mason Dixon line. I’d have to say to each their own, and I’m no more ready to throw stones at a glass house than anyone else. Mad Men just brings certain era-appropriate issues to light. It throws these issues that were swept under the rug for years and puts them in your face, but in that classy, stylish kind of way. You know, like the back-handed compliment from a frenemy.

Something a little less serious, is the style to which Mad Men has always alluded. It’s officially the swinging sixties. And things are getting into full swing. Young women like Megan are chasing their dreams instead of succumbing to their husbands’ aspirations. Peggy is moving in with her boyfriend. Not to mention the colors and patterns are getting more and more vibrant! I don’t know what it is about the 60’s that makes me wanna get up and dance, but I’m pretty sure I was born in the wrong era. The sixties brought about shorter skirts, louder music, and the beginning of the free-love movement that the 70’s are utterly famous for. There is definitely a change in the air. Poor Don. His daughter Sally is about to be a child of the sixties. I see more drinking and grey hair in his future.

So Mad Men has finally gotten better. The stories are better. The characters are more fun and complex. The drug use is as blatant as the drinking. I have to say I’m excited for the 60’s. I’ve been told I have an old soul. Apparently, my soul loved the sixties, because I can’t help myself and I can’t get enough of them. Why is Mad Men so much better this time around? Is it just because they had more time to work on the storyline? Is it the era we are wandering into? Is it the deliberate care they are taking to build each character for you? Is it because Betty is heavier than her normal, unfair, perfectly thin body? Nah, that can’t be it. Maybe it’s the fact that Roger is back on the prowl and we know disaster is looming around the corner for that guy. Oh Roger, you       never disappoint. Whatever it is, it’s working and I am hooked again. And I’d bet another Pete affair that you’re hooked as well.

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SPOILER ALERT: Mad Men recap follows…

27 Mar

Well its been almost two years since we’ve been blessed with a Mad Men season premier. Last night they debuted their new season with a two hour long show, as if that would make up for its disappearance for so long! So the question remains, does Mad Men still have what it takes to reel us in, even after all this time? The jury is still out on this blogger’s opinion. Beware, spoiler alert coming! If you haven’t watched the new episode yet because you are harboring it on your DVR to share with a nice Pinot Noir, please do not continue reading. But please do come back and read after!


When we meet the Mad Men again, we see an older, hopefully wiser Sally. Her voice has changed, and the kids are obviouslyolder. Guessing from what happened prior, I would put us about a year from where they left off. Joan has had her baby, which we know is Roger’s, and so has Trudy, but hers is her husbands. No judgement, Joan, you know I love you, and your curves. Don has married Megan, and they have a lavish apartment in the city. From the the looks of it, Betty and Henry have moved out of Don’s house and into, what Don made a reference to , a very Adams’ Family style home. While Henry and Betty did not make an appearance in this first episode, I did see in what’s to come next week that they will be back in the picture. I had to wonder if Betty’s character was left out due to January Jones’ pregnancy, cutting it awfully close to production and what not.The temperature at Sterling Cooper Draper Price as certain taken a wee bit of a turn. Peggy is a much more confident woman, which is nice to see after all these years, extruding her “Don-ness” on the people around her, and not leaving the clients out of that mix as well. Megan has adopted a new job in what looked to be like Peggy’s first job with the firm. Jealousy definitely exists among the ranks, but nonetheless, she is the boss’ wife after all. Don, who always arrived late pre-Megan, still arrives late but it is heavily noted as the pair entire the building, being compared to royalty. Everyone has always known this is Don’s show. The clients come, for Don. Even the big bosses recognize they are merely there for the drinks.

What I found interesting is how each character did not progress in a different direction of their own willing, but adopted another characters persona. I heard it discussed on the radio this morning and I have to say I agree. Peggy is the new female “Don”. Pete is the new “Don”, but in the miserable, commuting husband kind of way. Saddled with a wife who doesn’t take care of herself as she used to, and a house in the ‘burbs. He comes home late, looking dreadfully bored and stuck. I smell an affair in the works for Pete again.

Back to Peggy. She is everything she always admired and hated about Don. She is confident, cocky, but says too much, one thing you could never say about Don. She is still with the liberal, underground journalist; an odd mix, the two of them, but definitely interesting. She dresses better, but still not the way Joan would like her to dress. She has definitely come full circle, but not into her own her, but more into Don’s own.

Joan is still gorgeous as ever, just maybe a little tired. New mothers have the look of sweet desperation that screams from across the room, HELP! However she is still Joan, and ready as ever to come back to work. This, I admire and get. She may be needed at home, but being needed by twenty grown men is so much more of a compliment than a drooling newborn. The fact that Roger greets her as if nothing has changed is a little heartwarming, and yet disheartening at the same time. Her eyes light up when he yells “There’s my baby”, but the light wains as she realizes he’s talking about her, and not the boy. Sad really. Another man in the firm has fathered a child with another woman in the office that he doesn’t admit. They’re batting two for two at ol’ SCDP.

So this brings us to Don. Oh, Don. Everyone just thinks you are so charming and handsome, it seriously makes me ill. Jon Hamm has got to be a jerk. I just can’t think of him any other way. He plays a jerk so well, and people telling him how handsome he is??? C’mon, can I get a EGO with a side of Hamm. So Don is married, again. Shocking, I know. However this marriage seems different. Is he a changed man? Is he just still in that honeymoon phase? Is he really happy or this just an act? I was convinced we were going to see a new Don, but then sorely disappointed after the jab he made at Megan over the party. After that, I thought, same old Don. When he came back to the house to apologize and further explain himself to her, it made me think of Don in a good light again. Maybe he has changed. He is definitely happier, and less uptight. Only time will tell, because if I know Don, the way we all know Don, it is only a matter of time before that ticking, time bomb of a insecure, confused orphaned boy goes off. People like that cannot ever enjoy their lives for too long. They find themselves destroying anything and everything in their path that makes up their lives, and that brings them an ounce of happiness. That Don is still in there. Unless we’ve got another Anna on our hands, in Megan, I don’t see the self destructive Don Draper wandering too far from home. It was however a shock to see that Don’s irritation about the party was about the people, and said nothing about the sexy little number Megan put on for every one there. Can I get a little hum of the now classic, Zou Bisou Bisou? Not to mention that every wife in the country is hitting the gym this week in order to be more confident while cleaning the house in their bra and underwear. I see your game, Megan, and I like it!

In the end was the season premier of Mad Men really worth the two hours it cost me? Probably not. It was definitely a slow build, but looks to be a promising season. I look forward to the twists and turn it always delivers, and having to rewind my DVR in order to catch what Pete just said because I was distracted by another amazing dress Joan will be wearing this season. Gotta love that 60’s fashion!