Monday, July 20, 2009

Mad Men

We've been watching the first season of AMC's Mad Men on DVD this week. The show is completely absorbing, not in the compounding mystery way of a show like Lost or in the action-packed cliffhanger way of a show like 24, but in that it creates such an atmosphere that it's hard to return back to modern times. It's no secret that I'm slightly obsessed with all things mid-century modern, and this show delivers that in a big way. The set design is unbelievable. That alone would keep me watching this show, not to mention the fabulous clothes. I mean, seriously, the simple glamour of the late 50's and early 60s is perfectly represented. It makes me want to live in that time period, although, the female characters on the show... well, let's just say that they are largely oppressed.

All the men are essentially lying cheats and all the women are victims. Well, not ALL, but an independent woman is the exception here, certainly not the rule. I remarked the my husband, "I certainly hope that all men aren't really like that." And he asked me how I perceived those men and I told him and he seemed to think that I was missing a lot of the depth of character that he relates with. I guess because there is such a hard line separating the gender roles in this show, it's difficult for me to develop empathy for the male characters.
Interestingly, one of the main characters is played by Vincent Kartheiser (far left). It took me a while (and google) to place him, but he was last seen as Conner, Angel's son on Angel. I pretty much hated him on that show, but he's really matured, both as an actor and physically, and he's a great fit for this particular role. Not so much for Conner.

The show also offers interesting insight into the origins of modern advertising strategy and the smoking hot Christina Hendricks as secretary, Joan.