A Note on “Mad Men” – The AMC Series Starring Jon Hamm

After hearing multiple people talk about how wonderful the “Mad Men” series is and watching numerous interviews on various talk shows with Jon Hamm, I finally became a convert to the show while listening to a “This American Life” podcast with Ira Glass.

Perhaps I should devote an entirely separate post to “This American Life” since I love the NPR/PRI show so much, but for now I will just reference it. I was listening to an episode that was focusing on Origin Stories that you might not have thought of before. One of the segments featured an interview with Julian Koenig, “the legendary advertising copyrighter” responsible for the trademark Volkswagen ‘Think Small’ ads. Koenig claims that a former partner has been taking credit for several of his best ideas for years. In the segment, Koenig mentions that he was delighted when he learned that “Mad Men” (a series about the fascinating lives of the ‘ad men’ during the 60s) featured the original Volkswagen ad, lauding the genius of its creator, Julian Koenig. Finally he was receiving some credit for his work.

I had never really taken the time to look into what “Mad Men” was all about until that moment. I was hooked and immediately added Season One to my Netflix queue. I have thought before that advertising seems to be a fascinating career and have even considered applying my writing interests to that career path, but I never pictured it like it is today–my mental images always involved precisely what Mad Men is all about.

And that is why I am hooked. The clothes alone from the time period make the show worth watching. I am fascinated by the campaign pitches, the incessant smoking, the art department that drafts handcrafted paintings to accompany the wordsmithing, and I am even fascinated by the conflicted role of women during that time.

Now, I understand that many other people discovered this gem years ago since it is in its fourth season, but I am just on Season One and loving every minute. I have never been more excited for my Netflix mail to arrive. People who watch the show already keep telling me that “I don’t even know what I am in for” and that just gets me excited. What a fun, interesting, and quality series. I highly recommend it, at least I do so far…


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