May 092013

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: “For Immediate Release” on Blogcritics. Mad Men has reawakened its advertising mojo. The focus of this week’s episode is on the “business” of advertising and how it compels the characters to be who they are. Everything develops brilliantly from that point of view. “For Immediate Release” is a powerful episode with exciting, unexpected, impulsive happenings that set the stage for tantalizingly compelling scenarios for the remainder of Season 6. From an advertising agency perspective this episode has it all. Account resignations and firings, [read more]

Jun 012012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: Jaguar Bares The Soul Of SCDP and Peggy Bails Out on Blogcritics. Episode 11 of Mad Men delivers intense emotions and bares the souls of the partners. Of all the episodes to date, this one touches more emotional chords than any other. Don’s rollercoaster ride with Peggy takes him from being an inconsiderate, nasty boss to feeling an odd mix of betrayal, loss and affectionate pride in her decision to leave SCDP. Don’s emotional journey with Joan moves from standing by her [read more]

May 102012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: Megan Leaves, Cool Whip Tops It Off on Blogcritics. This week on Mad Men, Megan discovers her talent and pursues her passion; Peggy stands up to Don (again); music plays its way into the creative department, and Cool Whip tops it all off….especially for me. In 1966 when I moved from Media to the Account Department at Benton & Bowles, my very first assignment was (you guessed it) Cool Whip. There is definitely Mad Men karma at work here. This episode took me on a wonderful [read more]

May 032012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: Ups, Downs, and Disappointments on Blogcritics Don And Megan Team Up. Award Letdown. This week’s Mad Men episode takes us on a roller coaster ride of emotions and disappointments. The continuing saga of the Heinz account drives much of the business action in this episode. It provides an interesting look into the genesis of the idea that saves the account, the importance of building client relationships, and how a little luck and female bonding can go a long way. The other dynamic that plays [read more]

Apr 132012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: Bad Dreams, Tense Realities on Blogcritics. Mad Men took a darker, more manly turn in this week’s episode. Don’s fevered dream in which he fights off his philandering demons and commits murder, Pauline’s slapping Sally and slipping her some Secanol, Joan’s dumping her husband and reliving her rape at his hands, and the creative department’s delight in looking at Chicago mass murder scene photos certainly made for some disturbing drama. Compared to all of this, things seem relatively calm on the [read more]

Apr 062012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: A Big Win and Cultural Enlightenment on Blogcritics Youth Culture Meets The Culture Of Mad Men This week’s Mad Men episode highlights the emergence of the ’60s youth culture and its infusion into the advertising business. It foretells the powerful and positive disruptive effect that the culture of youth will have on the advertising business. It really hit home with me. In 1966 I was 23, had celebrated my first year anniversary with Benton & Bowles and made the move from media [read more]

Mar 152012

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: Back (Finally). And Back To The Future. on Blogcritics. “Living” Social. Google Re-Imagines Mad Men Ads Through Digital Eyes. Mad Men Season 5 is upon us and we’re ready to head back to the ’60s—the Golden Age of advertising, decades before the internet, digital communications and social media. Mad Men is quintessential 1960s Madison Avenue, yet the show has been enthusiastically adopted and adapted by today’s digitally enabled viewers as well as modern Mad Men (and Women). While the narrative of Mad Men is firmly [read more]

Oct 232010

Tweet Article first published as The Mad Men Ride Into Tomorrowland on Blogcritics. All in all, the season four Mad Men finale was pretty tame compared to the dramatic upheavals ushered in at the end of season three. Other than Don’s engagement to Megan there were not any big developments or new shake-ups that would dramatically alter the operations and fate of SCDP. Slowly but surely things were starting to look up again for the agency. The partners’ outrage at Don’s manifesto ad in the New York Times [read more]

Oct 142010

Tweet Article first published as Don Draper Roars Back on Blogcritics. Lead, Follow Or Get Out Of The Way. As this week’s episode picked up it looked like the initial shock of the Lucky Strike loss had sunk in at SCDP and everyone accepted the reality that changes were inevitable. The initial outrage over Roger’s irresponsible handling of the situation had subsided and Pete decided to stay put at the agency. Lane was back as a stabilizing and pragmatic force directing the actions necessary to streamline [read more]

Oct 092010

Tweet Article first published as Mad Men: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly. on Blogcritics. Roger Tanks. Don Sinks. Peggy Delivers. Pete ?? This week’s episode brought out the good the bad and the ugly at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce. As far as Roger was concerned it was particularly ugly. This was a riveting episode that brought the uncertainties of the agency business, the fragility of client relationships and the vulnerability of people into dramatic focus. It was an especially emotional episode to watch. [read more]