Oct 282008

Our first post-season Mad News! I anticipate a flurry of season-end reviews followed by a welcome slow-down of this feature, but we’ll still run it at least weekly.

  • Basketcase jw pointed out the Vulture’s Don Draper Likability Index. Ha!
  • From Basketcase Surly Temple comes the first cogent, thoughtful analysis I’ve seen of Mad Men from the point of view of a conservative. Most conservatives have seen Mad Men as a celebration of bigotry, sexism, and smoking, and I’ve sneered, but Rod Dreher offers a contemplative and careful dissection.
  • Speaking of intelligence, the LA Times gives a cogent analysis of Don and Peggy’s relationship.
  • This political story about Mad Men is more glib than analytical, but you may enjoy it.
  • Jon Weisman went to the same high school as Matt Weiner: Where a certain Father John Gill taught.
  • The Deseret News can’t figure out how to hold on until season 3.
  • The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette thinks they’ve found an editing error in the finale.
  • TV Guide interviews Elisabeth Moss.
  • USA Today marvels at the construction of season 2, with seemingly minor events in early episodes leading inexorably towards the conclusion.
  • Newsday can’t love the finale enough.
  • The Detroit News places Don Draper at the top of the “himbo” heap. That’s a neologism I can do without!
  • The Plain Dealer interviews Matt Weiner on his artistry and success.
  • South Coast Today speculates that Mad Men’s relatively low ratings are because people aren’t very bright. Way to flatter the audience!
  • EW’s Popwatch declares Jon Hamm “Winner of the Week.”
  • And Hollywood Insider, also an EW column, reviews the Mad Men Revue, but with less verve than hullaballoo.
  • Wired does the “real ad men” story with a look at specific accounts, which is quite refreshing.
  • Reuters has a thoughtful review of Speed-the-Plow (with Elisabeth Moss, of course).
  • The Boston Globe sees season 2 as a counterbalance to season 1; blunt where its predecessor was elliptical. Yet the Modesto Bee sees season 2 as “less obvious.” Obvious is in the eye of the beholder, I guess.
  • Watch With Kristin‘s Jennifer Godwin has quotes from a bunch of cast members.
  • A Mad Men costume party in the Chicago area! At Fitzgerald’s in Berwyn, IL, it looks to be a blast, with an elaborate set-up and real commitment. If you’re in the area, GO. And report back.
  • Stickers and Donuts is back, this time interviewing the fabulous Dyna Moe about her Mad Men artwork.
  • Time Out New York has a charming interview with the charming Elisabeth Moss.
  • The season finale got awesome ratings, nearly twice last year’s finale. Ratings this season have averaged 63% higher than last season. YAY!
  • A wacky article in IESB visualizes Jon Hamm in an iconic if unlikely role.
  • Joanna Weiss of the Boston Globe isn’t feeling it about Don & Betty’s reunion.
  • As they have done for Father Gill’s previous appearances, America: The National Catholic Weekly, blogs about Mad Men. The insight into Catholicism is, as always, welcome. Writer James Martin SJ uses “practically raped” about Joan’s experience, and apologizes in comments. Yet, I cannot help but feel it’s important to see and note these remarks, even when subsequently corrected.
  • A cream-of-the-crop review from the New York Times.
  • Of his interview with Matt Weiner, Alan Sepinwall says:

    …well, we talked about a lot of things. Really, Weiner talked about a lot of things, and I just did my best to keep up with transcribing what had been scheduled as a half-hour interview and wound up running for nearly 90 minutes.

    Alan, we feel your pain. Well, our transcription fingers feel your pain, the rest of us loved it.

  • The St. Louis Post-Dispatches talks about mid-century television; the real thing, like I Love Lucy, and the retro thing, like Mad Men.
  • The Watcher gets poetic. Which is interesting, in an episode structured around the title of a book of poetry.
  • Right Celebrity does right by Christina Hendricks.
  • Post Magazine, a technical video journal, has a cover story on Mad Men, with Jon Hamm big as life and twice as lovely. Lots of “inside baseball” stuff, but still juicy.

  12 Responses to “Mad News, October 24-28, 2008”

  1. briome, I have a mighty, mighty RSS feed, and Basketcases email me lots of stuff. It's a lot of work, but I do love having it all here.

  2. How do you guys find these? Very impressive as usual…

  3. The LA Times article is very good. In re-watching the episode, the Don/Peggy scene when Don returns to the office has some lovely acting by Elizabeth Moss. Peggy’s so very pleased to get Don’s notice of, not only the change in her appearance, but her new status in the office.

    I can’t wait for Season 3.

  4. Te-Nishi Coates at the Atlantic has a great post on the rape scene & another on Passing, titled "the Negro Don Draper." "He is Gatsby and Anatole Broyard."

    (I sent this first as an email, but it bounced back).

  5. "Yet, I cannot help but feel it’s important to see and note these remarks, even when subsequently corrected. "

    WHAT?!?! It's a fictional character! Are you implying that there's some sinister or secretive agenda to this writer's wording?

  6. I am implying that there is cultural meaning in our choice of words, however subconscious or unintended, and that we cannot change the cultural without paying attention to these things.

  7. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB12251445105247358

    Here's a nice piece about Elisabeth that ran in yesterday's WSJ.

  8. Ms Darkly:

    Yes, in other threads. I have a follow-up.

  9. Thanks, Karl — have really hated the lack of time I've had to spend here in recent days. I'm missing too much interesting stuff.

  10. For everyone who enjoyed watching Jon ham it up in good form last weekend on SNL, we may see more of the same on 30 Rock shortly…

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