May 11, 2012

Mad Men: Thoughts on Season 5 (spoilers)

I have an unabashed love affair every Monday when I get home from work. It's during those precious 10 minutes I watch iTunes download the newest episode of Mad Men for my viewing pleasure (reminder: we don't purchase any TV subscription, so we're forced to be creative).

When season 4 finished and we realized it would be nearly a year and a half until any glimpse of season 5 would hit our screens, I was nervous. Really nervous. How can a show with so much momentum take so much time off? Would they lose their spark? Lose their inspiration? Would the show pick up where it left off or fast forward in time to catch up to their audience? These are the things I truly lose sleep over when it comes down to things I love.

Season 5 hasn't disappointed me so far, but probably for a few unconventional reasons. Here we go.
**SPOILER WARNING: If you are waiting to watch season 5, please do not read below.

#1: Don's no longer a pig
Thank heavens! As much as Jon Hamm can pull off the sexy ad-man persona, I was getting a little sick of it. Seriously. Near the middle of season 4 when Don sleeps with his secretary (even though he's newly divorced), I had reached my moral limits. I just shouted at my television, "Okay! I get it! Don has mystical powers! He can attract ANY female on the planet!" I'm happy to see Don transform into more of a family man and less of macho miserable pig.

#2: Megan
I love her. She's such a strong, passionate character. There have been many moments, especially when she's working on the Heinz project where I just say, "Liz. That's who you want to be. Be her!" It's awesome and sad at the same time. I'm happy to see another strong female lead that we see both in the office and at home. There is no doubt that Peggy and Joan are strong female characters, but they're also not as developed since we don't see the inner nuances of many of their relationships.
#3: Lane FINALLY punching Pete Campbell
We've all been there. We want to punch Pete Campbell when he fulfills his class-A jerk role in the show, but we then realize that we can't punch our TVs on our computer screens. I have been building YEARS of angst regarding that character. I love how much I hate him. Seriously. Alas, Lane finally let him have it and everyone stood back to watch--amazing.

#4: Don's New Pad
I know I'm not the first person to claim affinity for mid-century mod furniture, but there is certainly something special when it all falls into line into a pitch-perfect design. I would probably do anything to take a tour and/or live in the new Draper residence. I mean, it is stunning.

#5: More Supporting Characters
I love the new characters. I love that the actress formerly known as Alex Mack is returning as Ken Cosgroves wife (or fiance?) and I really love how frequently we're seeing and hearing from these little guys.

#6: Peggy is FUNNY.
Elisabeth Moss has been on a roll this season and hasn't missed a beat. Peggy Olsen is now a funny lady who isn't afraid to talk back to Don Draper and let him know how she really feels. REJOICE! I have always loved Peggy, but I love her best in this season. She's really developing and I love every minute of it.

(All photos are from except for the apartment photos; those were found here.)

Want more to read about Mad Men Season 5?

This NY Times article is pretty stellar and is where I got the photos of the Draper apartment. You can also see photos of the apartment and read discussion here.

Have you been watching season 5? What do you think of how the characters are evolving?

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