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Mad Men

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Don Headroom.

“People want a dance that makes them feel safe. They’ll do anything for it, even leave their friends behind.” Also by way of The Late Adopter, Buzzfeed collects some of the best hits of 80’s Don Draper. “Imagine this: not just one Corey, but two.” For more fun, read the very funny Twitter feed. “Simon isn’t about remembering a bunch of colors and sounds. It’s about remembering who we are.”

Speaking of Mad Men, I liked Forrest Wickman’s Chevy-is-Vietnam reading of last week’s strange, Dr. Feelgood-enhanced episode. That being said, the agency is starting to lose me — Don’s been spinning his wheels all season, and while it may be true-to-life, it’s not all that compelling to watch the main character become ever more repugnant and self-pitying while making the same mistakes, over and over and over again. (With that in mind, it’s become especially clear this season that Matt Weiner cut his teeth on The Sopranos.)

Also, nothing on the show is dumber or more show-stopping than 30’s whorehouse Dick Whitman. Every time we flash back to that ridiculous thicket of hyper-Freudian backstory, I’m reminded of nothing so much as Cletus the Slack-Jawed Yokel.

You’re Blowing It, Campbell.

Ehrmagerd: Since everyone needs a laugh or two today, Mad Men and Community‘s Allison Brie re-creates favorite Internet memes. Given her two-show stardom, You Had One Job doesn’t work here. But doesn’t her cheesy name make Brie perfect for an Xhibit recursion? Yo dawg, I heard you liked Brie…

Caged Wisdom, Meet Sterling’s Gold.

There’s always money in the banana stand and Roger Sterling’s billfold: John Slattery joins Arrested Development Season 4. (I blame all the acid.)

Story Matters on A(TV)C.

All in all, these AMC series remind me of American movies made in the early-to-mid-’60s, when Puritanical content restrictions were starting to break down and commercial films were embracing a new frankness, but filmmakers hadn’t yet gone into the ‘anything goes’ mode that dominated the final quarter of the 20th century…[A]s mid-’60s American film demonstrated, there’s more than one way to be ‘adult.’ AMC seems to have realized this and embraced it, and it’s one of the reasons the channel is flourishing.”

Salon‘s Matt Zoller Seitz (formerly of The House Next Door), sings the praises of AMC, home to Mad Men, Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead and Rubicon. I watch all of those except Rubicon, which is still languishing on the DVR for the time being. (Now that it’s canceled, unfortunately, I may never get around to uncorking it. This was also the fate of Carnivale.) As for The Walking Dead, it’s seriously overwritten at times — the sisterly pow-wow about fishing at the top of Episode 4 was just embarrassing — but I’ll stick around through the first season at least.

Anything for a Pryce.

He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson. He is the organizer of half that is evil and of nearly all that is undetected in this great city. He is a genius, a philosopher, an abstract thinker. He has a brain of the first order. He sits motionless, like a spider in the center of its web, but that web has a thousand radiations, and he knows well every quiver of each of them.

Sounds like am organizational genius, a master of efficiency…a bit like Lane Pryce, no? Robert Downey Jr.’s Sherlock Holmes gets his arch-nemesis, Professor Moriarty, in veteran character actor Jared Harris. I like it. (FWIW, I still haven’t caught the the Moff’s contemporary Holmes reboot for BBC, but I hear good things.)

Red Queue, Blue Queue.

By way of the NY Times, here’s a map of what Americans are renting from Netflix. Apparently, the Fort Myers military base at zip code 22211 has radically different viewing tastes than the rest of DC, and Manhattan and Brooklyn (but not New Jersey) love them some Mad Men.

The Boys are Back in Town.

“A more interesting measure of the show’s impact is the fact that its title has become a kind of shorthand: you can now talk about a Mad Men skirt or lampshade or pickup line where once you might have used ‘space age’ or ‘Kennedy era’ or ‘Neanderthal.’ But while the show, like its subject, has many surface pleasures–period design, period bad behavior (if you like high modernism, narrow lapels, bullet bras, smoking, heavy drinking at lunch, good hotel sex, and bad office sex, this is the series for you)–at its core Mad Men is a moving and sometimes profound meditation on the deceptive allure of surface, and on the deeper mysteries of identity. The dialogue is almost invariably witty, but the silences, of which there are many, speak loudest.

It’s that time of year again: As seen pretty much everywhere of late — the quote above is via Bruce Handy at Vanity Fair — AMC’s Mad Men returns for Season 3 this Sunday.

I musta been Mad.

The boys are back in town, but the times they are a-changin’… Mad Men Season 2 starts tonight on AMC, 10pm EST (or, in this household, right after Generation Kill.)

That’s some Shameful S**t.

The 60th annual Emmys nominees are announced, with plenty of justifiable love for John Adams (23 nods) and Mad Men (16). But, really, The Wire was overlooked again? No Mary McDonnell for Galactica? 2 and a Half Frickin’ Men(?!) over Flight of the Conchords for Best Comedy? I just can’t take these media monkeys or their plastic pantomime at all seriously anymore.

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