How to cope with the end of Mad Men

21 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Don Draper Wrote That Coke Ad, After All.

It’s not enough to deliver a satisfying series finale to a beloved televison show. Anyone who expected Matthew Weiner to clinically dissect the meaning of Sunday’s ambiguous finale of “Mad Men” probably wasn’t paying much attention to the show, which over seven seasons refrained from hard judgment of human behavior, favoring instead complicated texture.EW Senior Writer Jeff Labrecque tackles the burning questions the Mad Men finale just didn’t have time to remedy, which can now can only be answered by fans’ imaginations. Modern fandom demands more than that, so after a few days of “decompression” following the Coke-and-a-smile ending to seven seasons of Mad Men, Matthew Weiner sat down with author friend A.M.

But aside from his wife, the writers and leading man Jon Hamm, who plays the legendary Don, he didn’t tell anyone and even gave the cast a script with a fake ending. But in an appearance at the New York Public Library on Wednesday, in what he has said would be his only discussion of the show after the finale, at least for the time being, Mr. What we do know is that the last few episodes have been dedicated to giving big nostalgic send-offs to all the main characters, such as Roger Sterling (John Slattery), Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss), Betty Francis (January Jones), Joan Harris (Christina Hendricks) and Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser).

Weiner contradicted those who saw cynicism in the series’s concluding moments, which cut from the show’s hero, Don Draper, meditating beatifically by the ocean, to the smiling, singing young people of Coca-Cola’s 1971 “Hilltop” commercial. “I think it’s the best ad ever made,” he said. “That ad is so much of its time, so beautiful — I don’t think it’s as villainous as the snark of today thinks it is.” In the roughly 90-minute talk with the writer A. But I’m saying that people who find that ad corny are kind of… they’re probably experiencing a lot of life that way, and they’re missing out on something,” said Weiner. The chat marked his first (and likely only) interview to touch on Sunday’s series finale. “I can’t believe this happened, and I’m so grateful we got to do it and we were allowed to end it how and when we wanted to,” he said. “I wanted it to feel that there was a vision and a point to the entire thing. … I’m so pleased that people enjoyed it and seemed to enjoy it exactly as it was intended.

During the 85-minute conversation, he offered insight into the development of the show’s storylines over time as well as surprises that came as a result of collaboration in the writers’ room. You can’t get a 100-percent approval rating, or you’ve done something dumb.” The Hollywood Reporter recaps the most intriguing revelations from the discussion (among them candid thoughts about literature, therapy, Al Gore and Richard Nixon): Yes, Don Draper created the Coke ad. The last scenes of the series features Don hugging a stranger at a retreat and meditating with hippies, before the episode cuts to the 1971 Coca-Cola “Hilltop” commercial, to infer that Don returns to McCann-Erickson and creates that ad. “I have never been clear, and I have always been able to live with ambiguities,” said Weiner. “In the abstract, I did think, why not end this show with the greatest commercial ever made?

Weiner discussed how the show’s final season completed the story’s survey of the 1960s, which found progressive ideals giving way to conservative values and the rise of Richard M. Nixon. “This whole last season,” he said, “was the idea that the revolution failed in some way, and it’s time to deal with what you can control, which is yourself. But it was nice to have your cake and eat it too, in terms of what is advertising, who is Don and what is that thing?” That commercial shouldn’t be read cynically. “I did hear rumblings of people talking about the ad being corny. People were turning inward,” he said. “He takes to the road and finally comes to terms with the worst shame of his life — taking that man’s name,” Weiner said. “We realize he has no one.

This turning inward.” On the show, this journey took Don Draper on the road that led eventually to an Esalen-like spiritual retreat in Northern California. We loved the idea of her realizing her purpose in life right when she ran out of time. … I think there’s a lesson to be learned about the randomness of things, and also, she obviously had some predispositions and some fairly seriously cancer-causing behavior.” “One of the biggest arguments of the season was I did not want to end Betty and Pete’s story the week before.

For the pivotal moment in the finale, the show banked hugely on the skill of guest star Evan Arnold, who played Leonard, the man whose breakdown sparks Don’s burst of empathy and soul-searching. Weiner said that the idea behind the scene, in which Draper tearfully hugged the man, was that “the audience would feel that he was embracing a part of himself, or them, and that they were heard.” Others associated with “Mad Men” previously weighed in on the finale, most notably Mr. Everything would’ve been like five seconds long.” Weiner credited the writers room with talking him down from making the wrong decision, and not for the first time. “So many horrible mistakes have been avoided [by their collective wisdom over the years].” “We try to be the audience. … You want to be responsive to the audience but you really want to be true to the characters. … The most sophisticated part of it is that you want to fool the audience in the sense that you want to surprise and delight them. —Peter Weber Her flavor — toasted coconut with sea salt — hit grocery store shelves earlier this month, and she told The Huffington Post that she’s certain it will become “habit forming.” It was a “long and interesting process” creating a cracker, and Stewart said she tried several different combinations before selecting coconut and sea salt.

The rule that we sort of used is like, ‘What would really happen?’” Paul Holdengräber, the accented director of the NYPL’s interview series, made the unfortunate, but hardly unprecedented, error of introducing Weiner as Weener. When costume designer Janie Bryant told him it was time to put Don in denim, Weiner said, “Oh my god — jeans and that incredible flannel shirt — the guy is definitely out of uniform.” Among other topics he touched on was the trajectory of Christina Hendricks’ Joan character.

Weiner correctly him immediately, trying to laugh it off with a joke about the ease with which Holdengräber had pronounced Werner Herzog’s name during his prologue, and presuming the host to be German. “That is one of the reasons that [my family] left that place,” he said with a tight smile. [Note: Holdengräber was apparently born in Texas and raised in Belgium.] Don Draper may have looked Kennedy-esque, but Weiner could hardly go 10 minutes without returning to his fascination with Nixon and repeatedly drawing parallels to Don’s unlikely path to wealth and success. We all like salt.” Stewart said she’s not really a snacker — when she does grab a bite to eat between meals, it’s fruit — but believes a well-stocked pantry must have a few different types of crackers. She wouldn’t serve her Triscuits alone, but would add crab meat and lime or avocado and hot pepper, and also suggests turning them into an elevated s’more by topping a cracker with melted milk chocolate and a marshmallow. He was talked out of having Joan go through with an abortion by a female writer on staff, Maria Jacquemetton, who argued that she would not miss the chance to have a baby — which then greatly influenced the character’s development. “I love the fact that it’s not philosophical for her,” Weiner said of Joan’s evolution as a feminist. “This woman made a practical decision not to take any s— any more,” he said. Nixon, I see myself.” But Weiner couldn’t resist going further, delving into both Dicks’ poverty-stricken childhoods, and their determined drive to reinvent themselves and succeed after wartime service. “The idea that that guy, with no breeding, no Ivy League… and no friends [gets out of the Navy, and six years later he’s the vice president of the United States].

Weiner that it was right for the character. (On the show, she planned to have an abortion but then changed her mind.) “I didn’t think Joan would end up as a single mom feminist looking for child care on her own,” Mr. Of course, you have to present them on a gleaming silver tray alongside Waterford goblets and perfectly folded linen napkins, but you already knew that.

It’s well known that Weiner disclosed Don’s inspired idea to Hamm early on, but he also knew Betty’s fate at that point too. “People die of cancer in the US. He had never actually read another book with a “Mad Men” connection, Frank O’Hara’s “Meditation in An Emergency,” which appeared prominently in Season 2, until it was incorporated into the story. The Muslim-majority country is not wealthy — the UN’s 2013 human development report stated that one-third of the population lives off of $1.25 or less a day, and thousands of migrants have left for Europe, with many dying in the process — so it is also asking other nations to send medicine, bedding, tents, and household items so it can set up “habitable camps with decent sanitary conditions.” In a statement, the government said it was primarily reaching out to offer aid because Muslims were in peril: “The government of Gambia notes with grave concern the inhumane condition of the Rohingya people of Myanmar — especially those referred to as ‘boat people’ — currently drifting in the seas off the coast of Malaysia and Indonesia. But he did ask David Chase about if Peggy would ever confess to Pete about the baby, and if it’d be difficult for her to then look at kids. “She will have a psychological scar,” Chase told Weiner, who then decided that Pete would stay in the dark.

As human beings, more so fellow Muslims, it is a sacred duty to help alleviate the untold hardships and sufferings fellow human beings are confronted with.” Catherine Garcia New information is coming out about the events leading up to Islamic State taking over Ramadi, Iraq, on Sunday — including that 30 car bombs were detonated in the city center, 10 of them similar to the Oklahoma City truck bomb. Although security forces left, the official said the situation is not like what happened in Mosul, where Iraqi forces abandoned their posts and equipment; the Ramadi forces have “regrouped” and “consolidated” and are planning a counter-offensive. That was the idea and that was what we tried to do.” Unlike his mentor, David Chase, who directed one post-Sopranos film and then went silent, Weiner expressed a willingness to do another show eventually. I love the marination. … I loved having the period in between the shows.” Weiner prides himself on his memory, and he demonstrated some lingering bitterness towards AMC and Lionsgate over negotiations that almost ended the show prematurely. “I was in so many fights, that I started to think, ‘Is this my problem, or are these people really, really screwing with me all the time?’ Like, I come in on budget the first season, and Lionsgate cuts your budget the next year.

He just tells Peggy, just move forward — that’s his philosophy in life.” Weiner is still wondering where those awards are. “The actors on Mad Men behave like real people, and it has not been in style. I just see when I sit through these clips — the big screaming, bulging vein through the forehead, burst into tears, big speechifying, ‘I can barely’ hoarse voice — actors are voting on it! When you watch an entire season of a show in a day, you will definitely dream about it, but it’s not the same as walking around the whole week, saying, ‘God, Pete really pissed me off.’ And then at the end of the week, saying, ‘When he said he had nothing, that really hurt.’ I remember people saying that.

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