The critically acclaimed AMC series “Mad Men” is gearing up for its seventh and final season. I don’t care much for Jon Hamm. Yes, he’s easy on the eyes. But there’s just something about him I don’t like. “Mad Men” has managed to rake in the ratings and more than a handful of awards. So I decided to see what all the fuss is about.
I very nearly turned it off before the end of the first episode. The show glamorizes everything I despise about men and women, gender roles, and acceptable social behavior.
To begin; the men. In a word: pretentious. In their offices, smoking and drinking, hitting on the young girls in the secretary pool, ducking out early for the afternoon to meet up with their mistress. Arriving home, late, to their perfect home in the suburb. Enter, the women. The dutiful Stepford wife. Home and child perfectly kept. Oblivious to her husband’s philandering. Not a care in the world except “what’s for dinner, dear?”
I did managed to make it all the way to episode 4. In it, the Drapers are hosting a birthday party for their daughter. The son of one of the guest spills his drink on the floor. His dad says “go get your mother” so she can clean this up.
And what’s with all the smoking and drinking.. drinking and smoking. I confess, I’m anti-smoking and if it became a banned substance, I wouldn’t complain. The smoking is a real turn-off. The men. Then women. Everyone has a cigarette in their hand, always! And usually a drink. Cheers!
And finally, the way women are treated in the workplace. The young secretary gleefully happy about her $35/week paycheck (less FICA). I get it, this is set in the 1960’s. But she is working for a high profile advertising firm in New York City. Talk about a serious wage gap?! A gap that continues to be wide. It is no wonder women continue to struggle to break the glass ceiling and decrease the wage gap. Because we started out so, so far behind. And were, by Mad Men’s account, blissfully unaware.
– J. Ela