How Mad Men Helped Me Understand the Anger in My Mother's Feminism

In 1960, the year in which the first season of Mad Men takes place, my mother was living a few subway stops uptown from Sterling Cooper. She was a junior at Barnard College, about the same age as Peggy Olson. She married my father four years later—just as she was becoming a devoted member of what she would call “the… » 5/17/15 2:30pm Sunday 2:30pm

Here's What You Need to Binge on Mad Men and the '60s All Weekend

It’d be hard to argue with the claim that besides all the great characters, and the beautifully written dialogue, the biggest reason Mad Men (coming to a close this Sunday) was a hit was because it was about one our recent favorite decades in American history. Baby boomers, man.
» 5/16/15 11:30am 5/16/15 11:30am

Why We Should Have Seen Betty Draper's Mad Men Fate From a Mile Away

On the penultimate episode of Mad Men, viewers were shocked by a Betty Draper curveball, that, as far as I can tell by trolling dozens of unhinged messages boards online, very few viewers saw coming. But, in retrospect, Matthew Weiner, brilliant former Sopranos scribe, Mad Men creator, and mild sadist had been giving… » 5/15/15 3:45pm 5/15/15 3:45pm

Mad Men Who Cannot Function on Their Own: 'Jesus, What Am I Gonna Do?'

A single episode of Mad Men remains and things are, as they say, getting really real. The feeling that most of the main characters are careening towards a spiritual finality has only gotten more acute, but not necessarily because the series is ending; more so because they can finally see twilight from this vantage… » 5/11/15 12:15pm 5/11/15 12:15pm

Mad Men: 'It's Not Women's Lib, It's Just a Bitch Session'

We can all agree that Mad Men has had its share of intense episodes, as it’s explored every hellish crevice of the virulently unscrupulous and morally bankrupt. But last night’s episode, with its escalating depiction of women at the cusp of feminism yet not close enough to save them, was in my mind the most… » 5/04/15 1:15pm 5/04/15 1:15pm

Mad Men: The Women Just Have More to Lose

I can’t really recall another Mad Men episode with as bald and obvious an overarching theme as the one in Sunday night’s “Time and Life”—the preservation of legacies, and the uncertainty therein. With plotlines revolving around children, parents, work, and the continuation of the characters’ good names, the focus on… » 4/27/15 1:30pm 4/27/15 1:30pm

Mad Men: Viva la Sally Draper! 

Should we have a craft meet-up to make “Free Sally Draper” t-shirts, or what? As Hazel Cills observed last month, “for the rest of Mad Men’s run, Sally Draper will be forced to essentially live atop the grave site of a very different sort of death: that of her parents’ failed marriage.” More than that, though, last… » 4/20/15 2:10pm 4/20/15 2:10pm

Mad Men: Don's Coterie of Women, All Mirrors for His Sad Existence

It's so satisfying, as we wrap up the final episodes of Mad Men, to realize that Don was simply the moral barometer, and the show was about its women all along: Joan, Peggy, Megan, Dawn, even Caroline, Roger Sterling's nerdy secretary. The '50s and early '60s crawled by, entrenched power moving tectonically—so slow… » 4/13/15 1:00pm 4/13/15 1:00pm

Mad Men: Joan Would Like To Burn Shit Down, & Other Feminist Concerns

The primary goal of the miniskirt was never about tempting men: designer Mary Quant, mother of the mini, always said its construction was meant for woman's lib, literally. "I liked my skirts short because I wanted to run and catch the bus to get to work," she told the Scotland Herald last year. "It was that feeling of… » 4/06/15 12:35pm 4/06/15 12:35pm

Tracking the Life of Young Sally Draper, TV's Best Teenager

Sally Draper is almost nine years old in season three of Mad Men. During the episode "The Fog," after a bloody school fight in which Sally (Kiernan Shipka) pushed a classmate's face into a drinking fountain, parents Don and Betty are called into her class to discuss her increasingly bad behavior. The cause is… » 3/30/15 2:10pm 3/30/15 2:10pm

Fancy Fashion at Last Night's Fancy Mad Men and Home Parties

It's Spring and you know what that means: the television is about to bombard us with Sunday night shows that will impede upon our collective ability to go outside and actually enjoy the Springness of it all. (Looking at you, Game of Thrones, Mad Men, and Best Bars in America.) But with great power comes great… » 3/23/15 1:00pm 3/23/15 1:00pm

Mad Men's 'Secret' History: January Jones Auditioned to Play Peggy

The Hollywood Reporter has published an oral history of sorts on the phenomenon that is Mad Men as we approach the final seven (THAT'S IT?) episodes of the series. "The Uncensored, Epic, Never-Told Story Behind 'Mad Men'" follows the show from conception through its growth as arguably one of the best shows on… » 3/11/15 7:50pm 3/11/15 7:50pm

The Dude Who Made That Terrible Mall Ad Knew EXACTLY What He Was Doing

You've probably seen the abysmal ad for Missouri's East Hills Mall, which is currently circulating the Internet. Perhaps you even have the drone of "boots and pants and boots and pants" stuck in your head this very minute! Well, the guy who made that commercial knew exactly what he was doing. » 8/19/14 3:20pm 8/19/14 3:20pm