Movie References in New Business

 Posted by on April 15, 2015 at 5:35 am  Mad Men, Season 7
Apr 152015

Other smart people found smart connections in Mad Men episode 7.09: New Business.

Holy shit. Roger called Diana “Mildred Pierce” in Severance. If you don’t know Mildred Pierce, it’s the story of a woman who took a social step downward from upper middle class suburbanite when she became a waitress (recall that Diana said she had a ranch house with a two-car garage). Mildred had two daughters. The younger died of the flu. She had a steamy affair with a dashing man who had a shady falsified history.


The other great catch this week comes from Matt Zoller Seitz:

A nifty and rather deeply embedded pop-culture reference: Pima is much older than Stan and has a streak in her hair, like Anne Bancroft’s Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate; Stan eagerly lets Pima seduce him, betraying his age-appropriate girlfriend Elaine.

Katherine Ross plays Elaine Robinson in The Graduate, and Stan’s girlfriend is Elaine. The streak in Mrs. Robinson’s hair is actually a blonde highlight, but the impression is striking.



  15 Responses to “Movie References in New Business”

  1. Mildred Pierce lived in a California Bungalow very much like Anna Draper’s…That’s probably nothing but I just thought of it, but I really can’t believe I missed the Elaine, Graduate thing… That’s really obvious, yet not obvious.. I love it!!

  2. Wouldn’t we all love to have been flies on the wall in the writers room over the years when they were coming up with all these fantastic references??

  3. Love the catch on “The Graduate,” especially since last week’s episode carried that dedication to Mike Nichols.

    Would Henry drinking Don’s milkshake qualify as a “There Will Be Blood” reference?

    Nah, I guess not. 🙂

  4. The literary and film references always feel very natural, organic, within the show at the time. Life does imitate art. I have a tough time recalling one that seemed forced or awkward (meaning to be differentiated from maybe just an anachronistic mistake).

    The visual image of the black monolith last half season is an all-time favorite for me. I emoticon – 🙂 – just thinking of it now.

  5. has anyone commented on stan’s sketch of the three people? one of the figures is sitting up w hboth hands held behind his head. the minute pima enters his office, stan takes on same pose. also, how come the pima / stan seduction played liek 70s porn, complete with bad jazzy music n red lighting? one of my “mad men” friends asked perfect question: after peggy tells stan pima tried to seduce her, who do u think stan is thinking of that night when home w elaine: pima or peggy?

  6. I seem to remember reading that Anne Bancroft in reality was only 36 when the film was shot, rather young to be the older woman.

    • True. And Dustin Hoffman was 30.

    • She would be the older woman, because Hoffman’s Benjamin was only 21. Bancroft’s Mrs. Robinson was in her early-to-mid 40’s.

    • BB: “Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me!”

      MR: “hah hah hah hah”

      Love that scene.

      As they in the old, old SNL sketch:

      “it’s ACTING!”

      And fine acting, indeed.

  7. also, has fact that only time don is alone w lighting on is when he finds it completely empty.

    how about how he hugs diana around waist, motherly, womb-like touch…and how he greets her , as if they are some married couple w kiss, and she seems to recoil.

    end shot of them in sally’s room is like they are in world of child, and he is hugging himself n his own pain

  8. So…. that means Don will wind up with Diana’s daughter and then Diana’s daughter will kill Don…….

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