One of the true pleasures of Mad Men – for those who enjoy such pursuits – is the casual treasure of cultural nuggets strewn across each script.
– Freddy Rumsen talking about Mickey Mantle’s stolen glove in Babylon (May 1960)
– Roger making a tasteless joke about Rietta Wallenda’s gruesome death in Love Among the Ruins (April 1963)
– The party goers gossiping about Nelson and Happy Rockefeller in My Old Kentucky Home (May 1963)
– Peggy and Joey’s “John and Marsha” parody in Public Relations
– Dr. Lyle Evans’s mention in The Chrysanthemum and the Sword (March 1965)
The list is nearly endless, and sends some of us scurrying to Wikipedia and other Internet “sources” to be the first to locate the origin of the reference.
Christmas Waltz represents a good week for Aly Khan, the international playboy of the 40’s and 50’s. Two – count ’em, TWO shout-outs from the attentive Don Draper. Like so many Mad Men allusions, Aly’s time is done by time he gets his cameo … Aly Khan died in 1960 from injuries from a car wreck.
Sort of the “male Paris Hilton” of his time, Aly Khan was the son of the Aga Khan of Yakimour III. The Aga Khan is supposedly descended from the Prophet Muhammad (who presumably wanted a mosque on the moon lol). He dated and married famous Hollywood actresses such as Rita Hayworth, whom he married in 1949; Gene Tierney, to whom he was engaged in 1954; and Kim Novak.
When I first saw the card that came with the flowers, I thought “that’s not Don’s handwriting!” – until I figured out that the notes are typically written by the florist, not the sender (I’m slow, but I get there eventually).
You will note that the florist’s spelling is off, though it’s understandable. Perhaps she was channeling Don’s emotional plea from The Suitcase, suitable here for both Joan and Don in December 1966: “Get up!!!”
Now that’s an echo of both a Muhammad and an Ali.