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Entries in Mad Men (82)


FYC: Jon Hamm for Best Lead Actor in a Drama

Team Experience share their personal Emmy dream picks daily at Noon. Here's Deborah on everyone's favorite ad man...

Emmy voters, you assholes, now is your chance to make it right! 

You have nominated Jon Hamm seven times for his work on Mad Men. Seven times. It’s like you’ve got the hiccups and then, when the actual award-giving comes around, you’re all holding your breath. Stop it!

Okay, so, irritation out of the way, let’s talk about the work this extraordinary actor has done on this show. 

First of all, Mad Men is not an ensemble show. There’s an amazing cast doing supporting work, yes. Kiernan Shipka, January Jones, Vincent Kartheiser, Christina Hendricks, John Slattery, and especially Elisabeth Moss all deserve acknowledgement. Nonetheless, its Hamm’s Don Draper who carries the show, and the nuance of his performance is what delivers the show to greatness, matching the lofty ambitions of its writing with flawless execution. 

There are moments when the writers of Mad Men have simply stripped out the dialogue, and allowed Hamm’s face to do all the heavy lifting—to go from serene to angry to defeated in a few seconds. To break down and then build back up. There are times when no words are spoken, because words are for lesser actors. (That's especially true in the series' finale which should be fresh in your memory.)

Now, listen, Emmys. You’ve denied Hamm the award when he delivered the Season 3's The Gypsy and the Hobo, the complete breakdown of his façade, as Betty Draper confronted her husband with the evidence that he was another man. You’ve denied it to him when he delivered The Suitcase, the season 4 episode widely considered Mad Men’s finest hour, a two-hander in which Don falls apart, bit-by-bit, as he and Peggy Olson (Moss) tear apart their complex relationship in one long, grueling, drunken night. 

But how about now? How about an award for the series finale, Person to Person, when he learns that Betty has cancer, and silently, eloquently, lets her know he loves her? How about an award for Field Trip, as Don waits to hear about getting his job back, starting with absolute confidence, believing he is already hired, and bit-by-bit, hour by hour, becomes more nervous and more humble, all without any dialogue directly addressing the fact. Or just, you know, give it to him for kissing Peggy on top of her head as they dance in Season The Strategy.

There are many great actors on television today. I’m not saying other people aren’t worthy. I’m saying no one can do what Jon Hamm does. No one is more complex, more plastic, more impressive. Maybe someone out there is equally good, but no one is better, and seven years is too damn long to wait.


They a-link, damnit! It's a miracle.

The Wrap Maggie Gyllenhaal is "too old" at 37 to play onscreen love of a 55 year old actor? Gross!
Empire Juno's mom and daughter Janney & Page reuniting for the comedy Tallulah
Antagony & Ecstasy shares a killer review of one of my fav Best Picture winners Grand Hotel - loved every sentence of this
Nick's Flick Picks revisits Georgia (1995) as part of its Cannes retrospective. Have you ever seen it?  It's a goodie. Mare Winningham, guys
Nick's Flick Picks and the terribly underseen Angels & Insects - amazing costumes
Awards Daily handicaps Oscar chances of Cannes players with Carol and Youth getting top marks for AMPAS likelihood 
The Film Stage looks at Lucretia Martel's next one, Zama, as it begins filming
Salon compares the first seasons of Daredevil & The Flash. Which show wins?

Towleroad plans are afoot to make a stage musical of the Elton John biopic starring Tom Hardy called Rocket Man. Um... shouldn't they actually make the movie first before worrying about adapting it? 
Variety in case you hadn't heard: Roger Deakins will shoot the Bladerunner sequel (so at least it will look pretty and get one Oscar nomination)
CHUD has an index of photo glimpses of Suicide Squad from Harley getting wet to the Joker at gunpoint 

Mad Mania
Gothamist the last scene of every Mad Men season. Matthew Weiner approached each season with its last visual in mind 
Slate 10 great images from Mad Men over the years - the show that always looked more like a great movie than "television" 
Film School Rejects where to see the Mad Men cast members next - new projects! 
AV Club an illustrated guide to Mad Max warlords from the Toecutter to Immortan Joe 
Jezebel offers up hilarious mocking of vulnerable masculinity in the face of Mad Max Fury Road

Charlize Theron menstruated all over my masculinity! 

....and finally the Imperator Furiosa tribute fans of both Mad Max Fury Road and The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt didn't know they wanted but now can't live with out. 

They alive, damnit! 


'some say Link, it is a hunger, an endless aching need...♪'

The Star is TIFF about to get an "In Competition" slate at their annual festival? They've always avoided it
Playbill Sutton Foster visited "The View" and talked Thoroughly Modern Millie and her new show Younger (which she is typically excellent/adorable/funny in if you haven't yet watched it. No musical numbers yet though, boo!)
Wired has a longform oral history of ILM (Industrial Light & Magic) for its 40th anniversary, the fx house created originally for Star Wars that changed movies. 
The Daily Beast on Flula Borg, the German scene stealer from Pitch Perfect 2
Playbill this always kind of annoys me but non-nominated musicals will be performing at the Tony Awards: Gigi, Finding Neverland, and It Shoulda Been You. Better to spend the time focusing on nominees, I think.
Comics Alliance Vertigo Comics was totally prepared for the world to go wild for Mad Max Fury Road. They already have prequel comics and an art book with pre-comissioned tributes by major comic artists.
Towleroad Nick the Gardener takes you on a behind the scene tour of Magic Mike XXL for Ellen

Cannes Cannes loves Hou Hsiao-hsien’s longawaited epic The Assassin starring Shu Qi. Another Palme d'Or contender? This year seems highly competitive.  But mixed on Youth... which is apparently highly influenced by 8½
Awards Daily Sasha says that Paolo Sorrentino's Youth about two old men in the film industry, one retired (Caine) one still working (Keitel) will be catnip to Oscar voters 
In Contention says Emily Blunt is "spectacular" in Sicario but Benicio del Toro is the MVP
The Playlist [NSFW] has a clip from Gaspar Noé's Love  

"Mad" Must Reads
Because people can't stop writing about the Mad Men finale and George Miller's fourth Mad Max film. These are highly recommended!

Emily Nussbaum on the "existential brilliance" of the Mad Men finale 
Julianne Escobedo Shepherd examines how the meaning of Don Draper --or what we thought the show was about -- seem to have shifted over time
Alan Sepinwall grapples with the two Dons or rather Don & Dick and what we want from a person/character and who they really are
Mark Harris on "Artisinal Macho" and why the Mad Max Fury Road action scenes make recent action films feel so weightless 
Arthur Chu offers up a rundown of the long form feminism and "toxic masculinity" of the Mad Max franchise - the headline and subheader are kind of misleading but the actual point by point content / argument is terrific 

1979 to Go
Criterion Collection got Bette Midler to reminisce about The Rose (1979) for a dvd release!!! Take a look.



Mad Men Series Finale "Person to Person"

EDITOR'S NOTE: Abundant intelligent movie references were what first prompted the "Mad Men at the Movies" series. Though this series finale had no movie references, the great series' best episodes, hell even its minor ones, have had the richness of cinema both visually and thematically. That said, I personally enjoyed the unprovoked flashback to Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice (1969) a fitting companion film to see this week, for many reasons: its time period, its troubled romances, self-discovery retreats, and especially its gorgeously sly double-sided satiric/genuine "EPIPHANY!" and hippie-love musical finale. Here's new contributor Lynn Lee to wrap up as we raise our glasses (of Coke naturally) to the greatest TV show of all time - Nathaniel

It’s been less than 24 hours since the series finale of “Mad Men” aired and a vigorous debate is already raging over the last few minutes of it.  What, we wonder, was the meaning of the cut from Don’s closed eyes and beatific smile to the classic 1971 Coke commercial that introduced “I’d like to buy the world a Coke”? 

Is this where Don’s inspiration leads – back to McCann and Coca-Cola’s signature advertising hook?  Or is the juxtaposition an ironic commentary on the enlightenment he thinks he’s found?  Or is it a non-ironic contrast between the enlightenment he truly has found and the ersatz version that Coke would peddle as a substitute for the real thing?


Click to read more ...


Goodbye To Dear Loved Ones

I'm too distraught at the moment to truly process it but my favorite television show of all time ends tonight. End of an era, indeed. In just a few short hours at that. I'm off to co-host a finale party at the Museum of the Moving Image. (We will surely discuss later and probably through the Emmys so awards seasons have their blessings in keeping conversation relevant and alive.)

But to those who are also in mourning, you are not alone. This show has fascinated so many and inspired such wonderful writing on the web for seven years at many different sites. Let us cry on each other's virtual shoulders. Favorite episode. Favorite character. Favorite season in the comments please!


Mad Links on Furiosa's Road

Animals The Film this addiction romantic drama opens today in 8 cities. Go see it!
...David Dastmalchian, who so kindly guest-blogged for us, stars (and wrote it). He'll be doing a Q&A at tonight's screening at Village East 7:45 PM for those of you in NYC.
AV Club Anne Hathaway to star in a sci-fi monster movie called Colossal wherein she'll be psychically linked to the big monster
The Screenblog  Interview with the costume designer on Kate Winslet's The Dressmaker

Weekend Must Read
I know you shouldn't feed the trolls but this article from the MRA blog "Return of Kings" about why you should boycott Mad Max Fury Road because it's feminist is great great comedy. Unintentionally but that hardly matters when there are so many laughs to be had. My favorite part is the whining about ruining this great "piece of American culture" [slaps forehead] D'Oh. It's an Australian franchise, dumbass!

MNPP in a 'Ways Not To Die' post celebrating Mad Max, Jason sneaks in a little 'George Miller always cared about women' message 

Hollywood's Ongoing Diversity Issues
Moviefone More embarrassing news for Hollywood's anti-woman issues. Sam Waterston and Martin Sheen, supporting players on Grace and Frankie, are making the same thing as Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, the star attractions. What the F***?!? 
Heat Vision Fox developing The New Mutants, which was an X-Men spinoff back in the day. I wouldn't expect them to stick with its extremely diverse original lineup, because Lord knows when the X-Men was adapted it got a lot less diverse and way more narrowly obssessed with three alpha (white) males: Wolverine, Professor X, and Magneto
Women in Hollywood The DGA is part of the problem when it comes to underemployment of women
The Guardian Ava DuVernay might direct Marvel's Black Panther. since Marvel is looking for something more "diverse" and that word is apparently an actual quote? She seems like a weird fit since she excels at performance and humanistic drama and surely she has better things to do. Still, just when you hoped you could stop caring about superhero news this comes along. Obviously we'd watch it despite waning interest from the superhero glut.

Mad Men List Mania
Arts.Mic has a "definitive" listing of best characters with Peggy Olson, Don Draper, and Joan Holloway right where they belong in the top 3.
Rolling Stone same concept but with a different order and much love for Roger Sterling and the long departed Sal Romano in the top ten!
Esquire 100 Ways Mad Men might end. It says a lot about the show that with only 1 episode left it still retains its mysteries
Salon the 10 best Mad Men episodes from 'The Other Woman' (Joan showcase) to 'Babylon' (Peggy showcase)

Showtune Hot Song To Go
Matthew Eng reminded me of this. God I love this. Wouldn't it be great to see Maya Rudolph's PRINCE(ss) live?



Curio: Mad Men Parting Gifts

Alexa here, shedding a tear for the loss of our beloved Mad Men. Possibly the biggest thrill of my life as an artist was when Christina Hendricks herself purchased a load of my Mad Men playing cards and postcards as gifts for the final days of filming. I don't know who exactly she gave them to, but some days I like to imagine that Jon Hamm is playing poker with something I once handled.  

Shameless plug: you can still buy them at my shop. 

One of the things I've loved the most about the show is how it has inspired so many people creatively, like the wild resurgence of Mid-century modern interior design, fashion, and visual art. One of my favorite offshoots was Dyna Moe's Mad Men Illustrated. Dyna, a New York illustrator, has created illustrations for every episode of the show's run, and was eventually commissioned by AMC to create the Mad Men Yourself app and the book Mad Men: The Illustrated World.  She is still doing illustrations for every episode; you can see them all on her tumblr.

More arts and crafts after the jump...

Click to read more ...