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AMC TV Show: Mad Men

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Mad Men

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AMC TV Show: Mad Men

Postby STF on Thu Jul 26, 2007 4:28 pm

Is anyone else watching this show about Madison Ave. ad execs in 1960? AMC is annoying because they fill good movies with far too many comercial breaks, but I got sucked into watching a movie there a week or so ago and saw many promos for this show. I wathced the premier, which has been re-run many times and will watch the next episode.

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Postby Ty Webb on Thu Jul 26, 2007 6:23 pm

Haven't caught yet it, but thank to your thread, just set the DVR to record it.

Working in advertising, there's naturally a lot of buzz about it in the office. I hear good things.
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Postby a. james on Thu Jul 26, 2007 8:00 pm

i hate advertising.

crap to this show.
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Postby eephour on Fri Jul 27, 2007 1:58 am

not a bad period piece.
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Postby Tuolumne on Mon Oct 15, 2007 12:59 pm

bump. i LOVE this show. Holy shit, is it good.
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Postby STF on Mon Oct 15, 2007 1:06 pm

Tuolumne wrote:bump. i LOVE this show. Holy shit, is it good.


Me too. Best show on TV. The last episode was great; that douche Pete Campbell got destroyed.
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Postby Ty Webb on Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:50 pm

I love this show. Easily the best written thing on basic cable and it's just getting better as the characters develop. My only fear is that as they ratchet up the tension inherent in the various plotlines, they'll slip into sensational, prime time soap territory. Not likely, but you could definitely see it happening.
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Re: AMC TV Show: Mad Men

Postby oxlongm on Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:51 pm

If you hate advertising, you may still like the show. The pervasive casual sexual harrassment is so jarring to a 2007 viewer that everything else pales in comparison (even the smoking), but even in other ways, it's not very complimentary of the world it depicts.

I think it's pretty good. I've heard criticisms that it's all style and no substance, which I think is not true. But there is a lot of style. It's probably the most visually striking show I've ever seen on television.
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Re: AMC TV Show: Mad Men

Postby Ty Webb on Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:54 pm

oxlongm wrote:
I think it's pretty good. I've heard criticisms that it's all style and no substance, which I think is not true. But there is a lot of style. It's probably the most visually striking show I've ever seen on television.


Very true. The set design especially is note-perfect. They don't miss a thing.

And I don't agree that it's all style, no substance. It's not exactly at the same level as The Sopranos at its peak, but the characters are interesting, nuanced, and mutable. That's substance.
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Postby STF on Mon Oct 15, 2007 3:46 pm

Ty Webb wrote:I love this show. Easily the best written thing on basic cable and it's just getting better as the characters develop. My only fear is that as they ratchet up the tension inherent in the various plotlines, they'll slip into sensational, prime time soap territory. Not likely, but you could definitely see it happening.


You can see they're trying to exercise restraint, keep it low key.
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Postby STF on Tue Oct 30, 2007 12:38 pm

I know it's been a while since it aired, but the Mad Men season 1 finale was brilliant. Me and my friends can't stop talking about it. The scene where Don pitches the Carousel to the people from Kodak was devastating.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2bLNkCqpuY

I can't wait for season 2. By far the best thing on television. The only drama I watch, really.
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Postby MWilke on Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:39 pm

I saw the pilot. I thought the writing was really shallow and had a convoluted understanding of the advertising industry, which made for shallow satire. Also, the characters were pretty cardboard. I don't get why people love these 'edgy' buzz shows that are coming out so much. Oh well, I prefer not following TV shows anyways.
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Postby Ty Webb on Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:46 pm

MWilke wrote:I saw the pilot. I thought the writing was really shallow and had a convoluted understanding of the advertising industry, which made for shallow satire. Also, the characters were pretty cardboard. I don't get why people love these 'edgy' buzz shows that are coming out so much. Oh well, I prefer not following TV shows anyways.


Convoluted understanding of advertising? It's not a documentary. Within the boundaries of fiction and the demands therein, I think they do a very good job at capturing the creativity, the ambition, and the ethical pitfalls of the business, as well as its potential to deaden one's soul. What was so convoluted about it? I've been in the business several years now and I have no problem believing that, logistically and materially, it used to work very much as it does in the show. They obviously have to take some dramatic license however.

Cardboard characters? Not in the slightest.

I think you should watch another episode.
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Postby STF on Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:55 pm

They live in a time of extreme conformity, but they are not stock characters. Every character is full of internal conflict, tensions between the person they present to the outside world and who they really are. There are fewer outlets for self-expression in their time. People were more reticent about their feelings. They have to find other outlets to vent their dissatisfaction. I find these characters fascinating.
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Postby MWilke on Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:25 pm

Ty Webb wrote:
Cardboard characters? Not in the slightest.

I think you should watch another episode.


Mad Men wrote:"The reason you haven't felt it is because it doesn't exist. What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one."



Barf, no thank you sir.

I really wanted to like this show. I went to college for marketing and found the industry so disgusting that I stayed away after I graduated. What I was hoping this show would tap into was how people lead such ammoral careers and how it carries over into their existence. Instead it's another show about rich pricks being rich pricks. I'll pass on the future viewings, thanks.
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Postby Ty Webb on Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:40 pm

MWilke wrote:I really wanted to like this show. I went to college for marketing and found the industry so disgusting that I stayed away after I graduated. What I was hoping this show would tap into was how people lead such ammoral careers and how it carries over into their existence. Instead it's another show about rich pricks being rich pricks. I'll pass on the future viewings, thanks.


So you're judging it for its take on an industry in which you haven't actually worked and on its character development based on seeing just the pilot episode?

"What I was hoping this show would tap into was how people lead such ammoral careers and how it carries over into their existence."

This is PRECISELY what the show has been about all season.

"Instead it's another show about rich pricks being rich pricks."

There are rich pricks acting like rich pricks in this show, but it's in no way what it's about. As I said above, it's ironically and exactly about what you wanted it to be about. But you dismissed too quickly to find out.
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Postby Tuolumne on Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:47 pm

STF wrote:I can't wait for season 2.

Yeah. Summer 08. Fuck.
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Postby MWilke on Wed Oct 31, 2007 5:04 pm

Ty Webb wrote:
There are rich pricks acting like rich pricks in this show, but it's in no way what it's about. As I said above, it's ironically and exactly about what you wanted it to be about. But you dismissed too quickly to find out.


For the record, I took a marketing internship throughout college and worked in the industry for 6 months till I said "Fuck this shit".

The board room scene in the pilot where he sweet talks the tobacco people I really thought was shallow and missed the mark on how devious and slick advertisers really are. The complete lack of depth and marketing insight in that monologue was cringe-worthy. I also watched a post-pilot interview with the producers and head-writers. They were primarily focused on how self-indulgent these people were. "They smoked cigars and ate red meat!!" After listening to them, I accepted there weren't intelligent people behind this show. I still find marketing interesting, but I don't find the people in it very interesting. This show, to me, appeared not to have a keen grasp on marketing. I'll probably never bring myself to watch another episode, but who knows. Maybe if my netflix queue gets dry in a few months.
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Re: AMC TV Show: Mad Men

Postby oxlongm on Fri Nov 02, 2007 6:21 pm

I started a few episodes in, and as I got to know each character I was a little disappointed to have missed the background of the first episode or two. Not now!

I saw the pilot for the first time yesterday, and I didn't like it at all. It has a lot more heavy-handed more-cynical-than-thou speeches and the characters are more crudely drawn. It felt a lot less Sopranos and a lot more Roger Dodger. Based purely on the pilot, I wouldn't expect to like the show as much as I do now.

I heard that the pilot was shot long before all the other episodes. I'm not sure whether the extra time enabled the creator to find better writers, the writers to define the characters better, or what. It could be that there isn't much time for character development in one episode anyway, but even aside from that specific limitation, I think the quality of the writing increased a lot early in the season.
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Postby Earwicker on Thu May 15, 2008 10:11 am

I'm with Webb.

This MWilke fella is like the Pope condemning sex without ever having it.

The characters are beautifully developed - just very gently so.
The critique of the industry is pretty scathing - but just without fireworks.
the examination of the period is extremely insightful without being crass or obvious.

The style over substance charge surprises me too. It's stylish yes but certainly not at the expense of substance.

Suffice to say Not Crap - if only we Brits could return to making this kind of quality TV.
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