Apr 272015
 
Photo Credit:Justina Mintz/AMC

Photo Credit:Justina Mintz/AMC

Mad Men episode 7.11, Time & Life, is Jared Harris’s directorial debut, and I can only say, Welcome! This is the best episode of Mad Men since Waterloo. Harris deftly juggled a huge range of moods, subtly and not-so-subtly calling back to earlier episodes, and toying with our expectations throughout.

I’m not going to end with a bunch of bullets this week, so I’ll give you quote of the week up front. Naturally, it belongs to Roger: He loves feeling the tip of your nose in the seat of his pants. Ha!

In our first scene at Sterling Cooper, we see Roger’s desk piled high with folders. Since the beginning of the second half of Season 7, we’ve seen Roger working hard; something he’s never done before. Caroline pulling Shirley in to help her was treated as a joke, both in the script and by the audience, but there’s a serious component here; Roger has a lot to do, probably for the first time in his life. He’s taking the work very seriously as well, living up to the responsibility he took on as president of SC&P, to make the company work, and to honor Bert Cooper’s memory. The fact that it was Roger who figured out that the lease had expired, and then followed up on what that meant, is proof enough. In the past, wouldn’t he have pawned that off on Joan, or at least Dawn?

Isn’t hard work supposed to amount to something? Continue reading »

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Open Thread: Time & Life

 Posted by on April 26, 2015 at 8:00 pm  Mad Men, Season 7  202 Responses »
Apr 262015
 

It’s that time again! Jump on in to the open thread to schmooze with fellow Basketcases before, during, and after the latest episode of Mad Men, Time & Life.

If you’re new, please check out the comment and spoiler policies. Y’all have been very well-behaved this season!

And if you’re new or not-so-new, you should also be checking out our robust reference material. Did you know that we have detailed episode recaps, and that they include, to the best of my research capabilities, the exact dates on which episodes occurred? Turns out we’re the only ones who have that. And the cultural references section is like a stroll through the twentieth century. Fun!

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Apr 252015
 

Note to readers: This interview took place via email. I have taken a couple of liberties to make it seem more “chatty.”

Sola Bamis is someone the Basket knows and loves for her portrayal of Mad Men‘s Shirley, admin par excellence at SC&P. Shirley and Dawn are the first African-American employees at the agency, providing viewers several uncomfortable and enlightening moments as we see them struggle to overcome what we would now call a series of “micro-aggressions” as they fight to find recognition and acceptance in the workplace.

Sola Bamis: Behold

Sola Bamis: Behold

Sola grew up in Florida and attended the University of Miami, where she was named Miss University of Miami in 2007. She started out pre-med, following the wishes of her parents, who emigrated from Nigeria with high expectations for their children. Sola tried the med school path until the call of acting proved too strong.

In addition to acting, Sola is active on Twitter. She participates in many Mad Men threads and is consistently accessible, friendly, and supportive of the show’s fans, including me and the wife. Sola provides an intelligent and outspoken voice on the topics that resonate with her (see the insightful interview on her advocacy and voice at The Visibility Project.). One day I mentioned to Sola how cool it would be to give Basketcases a chance to know her better via an interview. She thought that was an “amazing” idea; this is the result.

White T Jim B: Thank you for agreeing to give this a shot. Our blog, Basket of Kisses, is regularly mentioned among the top Mad Men-focused sites around. Roberta and Deb, the sisters who run it, have become friendly with show-runner Matt Weiner, as well as much of the cast. My wife Anne B is one of the featured writers on the blog, and we are both huge fans of yours. It’s our pleasure to welcome you to the Basket.

SB: Thank you so much for choosing to interview me for Basket of Kisses.

WTJB: Did you read or watch anything to prepare for the role of Shirley on Mad Men? If so, what did you choose? Continue reading »

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Happy Birthday Roberta!

 Posted by on April 25, 2015 at 1:45 pm  Lippsisters.com  15 Responses »
Apr 252015
 

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The shorter half of Lippsisters.com turns a magical number today! Which I am way too smart to reveal without her permission.

Nonetheless, the happiest of days to you, my beloved sister, full of joy and wellness. Thanks for being born!

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Apr 242015
 

To say that The Devil’s Mark was a show bursting at the seams is a gross understatement. I agreed with what Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore said in his podcast; each of three events within it—the trial, the revelation, and the decision—didn’t merit their own episodes but were a challenge to execute within just one. Since the episode aired last Saturday, much has been made about expansions and diversions from the source material. I’m usually a big ol’ fan of these woulda-coulda-shoulda moments on screen, but it’s my opinion that unnecessary, languorous passages nearly suffocated the story line this time around.

Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
I got the idea for the name of this post in a somewhat flip and passing thought. I’m in full-on geek mode while writing these posts, but I like to keep it light, too. That’s especially true when an episode this heavy is on the docket.

When Father Bain (Tim McInnerny) implores his congregation/audience at the trial to expel him from the parish, I couldn’t help but think of these lyrics:
Easy come, easy go, will you let me go?
Bismillah! No, we will not let you go. (Let him go!)

It’s a tricky gambit to invoke the much-beloved Bohemian Rhapsody lightly. What’s more, I’m a middling Queen fan at best. I wouldn’t identify as a fan whatsoever, were it not for how awestruck I am by the groundbreaking artistry and singular talent of Freddie Mercury. While arena rock just isn’t my bag, I can absolutely appreciate that what both the band and its lead vocalist created was not only best-in-class, but legendary. Nothing like Queen ever existed before, nor will anything quite like them ever be created again.

I have no good reason for including this picture, except this guy looks like Dave Grohl, who once said, “Every band should study Queen at Live Aid. If you really feel like that barrier is gone, you become Freddie Mercury. I consider him the greatest frontman of all time.” I know it’s a stretch. Did I mention that he looks like Dave Grohl, though?

Continue reading »

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FINALE PARTY--First Come, First Serve!

FINALE PARTY–First Come, First Serve!

Apr 24, 2015

Update: THERE ARE NO SPACES AVAILABLE. We are hoping a few more people can come, so please read below and if you want to be on a wait list, email me (email below). Dear Basketcases, The Exciting News The Museum of the Moving Image has invited us to collaborate with them on their Mad Men […]

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Basket of News, Apr. 18-24, 2015

Apr 24, 2015

Gothamist unpacked the cultural references in The Forecast. The Lipp Sisters interviewed Jennifer Getzinger about directing “The Forecast” and “My Old Kentucky Home.” Ms. Getzinger also spoke to THR about the Don-Sally relationship and to Variety about where “The Forecast” leaves Don. Clickhole (The Onion’s version of a viral site) has An Oral History of Mad […]

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Mad Men Haiku!

Mad Men Haiku!

Apr 23, 2015

Welcome to Mad Men Haiku Don Draper’s briefcase Once leather and full of lies Becomes Samsonite      From the first episode, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (March 1960), through episode 7.08, Severance (April 1970), Don Draper has always carried a classic brown leather briefcase.  In episode 7.09, New Business (May 1970), he now carries a Samsonite slim […]

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Basket of Kisses Interviews Jennifer Getzinger

Basket of Kisses Interviews Jennifer Getzinger

Apr 23, 2015

Jennifer Getzinger started with Mad Men as the script supervisor, and has been with the show from the pilot. In Season 2, she graduated to the director’s chair, and has been gifting us with some amazing episodes ever since. This week’s The Forecast is her last episode of Mad Men. We sat down with Jennifer on […]

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Reinventing the Wheel

Reinventing the Wheel

Apr 22, 2015

The last shot of The Forecast shows Don Draper who, having just been expelled from his freshly sold apartment, wears a confused expression as “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” plays under the closing credits. The title refers to the statement about the company’s future Roger tells Don to write. Don struggles with this […]

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Peggy always wants a mentor

Peggy always wants a mentor

Apr 21, 2015

Sterling Cooper was, if not Peggy’s first job out of secretarial school, certainly a very early job; she was 21. She immediately took to Joan as a mentor, and Joan immediately treated her as a protégé to be groomed. Part of the hostility between Joan and Peggy, especially in Season 1, is that this was […]

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Don's Gone - Meet Dick

Don’s Gone – Meet Dick

Apr 21, 2015

To expand a little on a recent comment about New Business, it’s worth exploring the idea that, at this point in the story, Dick Whitman has replaced Don Draper in everything but name. As much as Don had supplanted Dick in 1960, Dick has done the same by 1970. I’m sure going back over the previous […]

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Tweets From Last Night: The Forecast

Apr 20, 2015

What an episode! Join us next week on the Twitter, won’t you? Sally’s day: Could this BE any more disturbing? #MadMen #BasketLive @SCandPartners — Basket of Kisses (@LippSisters) April 20, 2015 Glenn Bishop: he may be skinnier, hey may be older, but damn he’s the same creepy Glenn we’ve come to love. Come home safe […]

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