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April 1, 2011 2:58 AM   Subscribe

After some tough negotiations, AMC and Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner have come to an agreement to resume production on the series, which has been renewed for two - and possibly three - more seasons.
posted by crossoverman (70 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
I want to see those guys in polyester leisure suits and chasing the Pepsi Generation.
posted by Yakuman at 3:02 AM on April 1, 2011


Maybe if they do embrace the hideousness of the coming era it will silence the idea that the show is nothing but stylized eye candy.
posted by amethysts at 3:22 AM on April 1, 2011


i am worried about them firing writers.
posted by PinkMoose at 3:23 AM on April 1, 2011


That's true. AMC seemed to roll over on everything. That money has to come from somewhere.
posted by amethysts at 3:29 AM on April 1, 2011


What?
posted by bwg at 3:35 AM on April 1, 2011


Honestly, after all those seasons of foot-shooting, I'm kind of shocked Don has anything left on the end of his legs to shoot at. But boy howdy, would I continue to cringe while watching him do it!
posted by Mooseli at 3:38 AM on April 1, 2011 [3 favorites]


Sorry to hate, but I just can't care. Still pissed at AMC for canceling Rubicon, one of the smartest TV shows in many, many years.
posted by jbickers at 3:46 AM on April 1, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm worried that all this delay has ruined the best part of the show (as far as I'm concerned): the blossoming of Sally Draper, future dirty hippie. Seriously, as far as I'm concerned, the entire show could be about nothing else but her and her fucked up daddy issues.

And that creepy neighbor boy from down the street. Gives me the willies.
posted by ColdChef at 3:49 AM on April 1, 2011 [12 favorites]


2nding ColdChef on Sally Draper.

Otherwise, in our time-shifted, on-demand era I don't think delays make any difference whatsoever in TV land now.
posted by wingless_angel at 3:52 AM on April 1, 2011


I'm looking forward to Sally Draper: Dirty Hippie as a spinoff series.
posted by PlusDistance at 4:06 AM on April 1, 2011 [9 favorites]


Still pissed at AMC for canceling Rubicon, one of the smartest TV shows in many, many years.

I loved it too. You and I and the approximately seventeen other people who watched will miss it dearly. So as much as I was saddened at its demise I find it hard to fault AMC for not renewing a show with the ratings of CSPAN2 on a Friday night in a non-election year.
posted by Justinian at 4:07 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


As I understand the deal, AMC did not roll over on everything. Critically, they got the two more minutes of commercials during each episode that they wanted (other than premiere and finale), for the regular AMC airings that have ads at all. My understanding of the negotiations was that Weiner NEITHER wanted to reduce the budget NOR allow them to make more money on ads. They wanted both, and he wanted neither. My guess is that he made the choice between those two things, and it looks like he went with letting them air more ads, which he initially had insisted would make it "a different show." It's great that he now says he got everything he wanted and is now getting to make the show precisely as he chooses, but in fact, it looks like a compromise.

Incidentally, all the links in the FPP go to either the Huffington Post or the show's well-regarded fan site, but there are slightly different takes on whether Weiner rolled AMC as much as those links suggest he did if you look at places like the NYT or Alan Sepinwall's column.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 4:12 AM on April 1, 2011 [3 favorites]


Still pissed at AMC for canceling Rubicon, one of the smartest TV shows in many, many years.
+1
Loved Rubicon. Was very pissed at its cancellation.

As for MadMen...I wasn't aware that it wasn't yet in production for a new "season". As much as I like to watch it, I'm not sure I'd miss it if it went away. This era of year-long breaks between new episodes really does work to drain me of any anticipation for a show's return.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:12 AM on April 1, 2011 [4 favorites]


I'm worried that all this delay has ruined the best part of the show (as far as I'm concerned): the blossoming of Sally Draper, future dirty hippie.

I actually think this delay helps, since soon the actress would have to be playing older than herself if Weiner keeps skipping months and years between seasons. In fact, when it first seemed likely the Mad Men wouldn't be back in 2011, I thought it might have been a plan to let Keirnan Shipka age a little to suit the story.

This era of year-long breaks between new episodes really does work to drain me of any anticipation for a show's return.


I'd much prefer that the shows are made when the creators want to make them. As frustrating as a full year between seasons seems, it's not like I'm really watching the weeks drag by waiting for shows to come back.
posted by crossoverman at 4:17 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Great! We've been burning through these on DVD, it's a fantastic show.
posted by Artw at 4:17 AM on April 1, 2011


I liked Rubicon a lot - what I really liked was how good it could/would/was going to become.
posted by From Bklyn at 4:21 AM on April 1, 2011


god almighty let it die. why weren't two seasons enough?
posted by molecicco at 4:34 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Rubicon was awesome. That train scene? Talk about a "Holy shit!" moment.
posted by bwg at 4:36 AM on April 1, 2011


The show is very good. And thorough.
posted by punkfloyd at 4:45 AM on April 1, 2011 [4 favorites]


Sorry to hate, but I just can't care.

Thanks for sharing!
posted by pwally at 5:00 AM on April 1, 2011 [7 favorites]


Rubicon and Terriers. The only new American shows I watched last season. Now that Big Love is finished, I'm down to ...what....Office, Mad Men, and? Oh Well. More time for Brit TV.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:31 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


god almighty let it die. why weren't two seasons enough?

Really? Two and a Half Men got 8 seasons, and you're going to bitch about Mad Men getting picked up for a fifth?
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:32 AM on April 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


In the last few episodes of the last season, I realized that Sally is the same age as my mom, and that it is kind of weird.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 5:53 AM on April 1, 2011


Apples and oranges man! That show was shit to begin with. Dragging it out can't really bring it down any further. But for some reason, good American series often get dragged out as long as possible. I loved the Wire, but I think it went on just long enough. Six Feet Under was brilliant, but also dragged out. I'd rather be left wanting more!
posted by molecicco at 5:55 AM on April 1, 2011


^^ that show = Two and a Half Men.
posted by molecicco at 5:55 AM on April 1, 2011


Awesome! I'm still working my way through Season 3 so I should probably bow out here.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 5:57 AM on April 1, 2011


I used to care. Then Breaking Bad came on, and all other TV paled. Don Draper's shenanigans just don't seem as interesting as even one "pollos" text message.
posted by CunningLinguist at 6:08 AM on April 1, 2011 [10 favorites]


Having Sally age a bit fits into some rumors I've heard on set, namely slowly phasing Don out of the show entirely.
posted by The Whelk at 6:43 AM on April 1, 2011


Man, I hope Dexter is in production already for fall 2011.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:49 AM on April 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


I take nerd pleasure in the shows genre-crossovers in the form of Mr. Jones and Mrs. Reynolds.
posted by Artw at 6:50 AM on April 1, 2011


Is this where I complain about Firefly?
posted by blue_beetle at 6:54 AM on April 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


Neat. If they stay on a bit longer, Draper can advertise for the event where Fonzy actually jumps the shark...
posted by Nanukthedog at 6:55 AM on April 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


The important takeaway (from the Alan Sepinwall article linked to above by Linda_Holmes):
Weiner's been given the option to deliver episodes to AMC in both a 45 and 47-minute version. The 45-minute version is what's going to air first on AMC, but the 47-minute version will be available on "multiple platforms" - presumably iTunes, DVD and - I'm just speculating here - maybe even the On Demand version. (UPDATE: A few stories have said that the 47-minute version will be available "digitally" 8 days later.)
So basically, just don't watch the original airing.
posted by pwally at 6:57 AM on April 1, 2011


I'm worried that all this delay has ruined the best part of the show (as far as I'm concerned): the blossoming of Sally Draper, future dirty hippie. Seriously, as far as I'm concerned, the entire show could be about nothing else but her and her fucked up daddy issues.

She's much more likely to have momma issues — in fact, she already has them.
posted by orange swan at 7:16 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


After hearing how great this show was, I picked up the first season. It had its interesting parts but for the most part I found it a slow, aimless examination of some despicable people. I enjoyed the setting but beyond that, I just wasn't getting into it. I couldn't find a character I genuinely liked, and nothing seemed to happen beyond people ruining their own lives. Not quite what I look for in my entertainment.

Maybe things picked up in later seasons or maybe I'm just not in the target demographic. Anyway, I refocused my search for addicting TV onto Dexter and never looked back.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 7:37 AM on April 1, 2011


I don't even watch the show but I'm glad there will be more T. Lo. recaps of the show and its costuming. If I ever do get into it on DVD, it'll be their fault. (Even they can't sell me on Glee, though.)
posted by immlass at 7:43 AM on April 1, 2011


Rubicon and Terriers. The only new American shows I watched last season. Now that Big Love is finished, I'm down to ...what....Office, Mad Men, and? Oh Well. More time for Brit TV.
Why not just not watch TV? I did watch MadMen (and therefore clicked the thread :P), but honestly other then TDS and the Colbert Report I don't watch anything else on TV. Seems like such a waste of time.
posted by delmoi at 7:47 AM on April 1, 2011


I thought it was kind of a dick move for Damon Lindelof to flippantly comment on Weiner wanting to have his cake and eat it too before negotiations were done. Clearly with the contract that was announced Weiner wanted to get paid, sure, but it's clear he cared about his show creatively. AMC clearly wanted Weiner to look bad during negotiations, so I'm just surprised that someone like Lindelof went to bury Weiner based on what AMC was saying.
posted by inturnaround at 8:08 AM on April 1, 2011


What the hell is going on in this thread? I a) love Mad Men b) more than Rubicon and c) CAN'T WAIT for it to come back.
posted by two or three cars parked under the stars at 8:09 AM on April 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


forget it jack, it's metafilter
posted by The Whelk at 8:12 AM on April 1, 2011


Yup.
posted by Artw at 8:14 AM on April 1, 2011


I listen to NPR on my alarm clock as I wake up, and one morning I heard an interview with a woman who said that Glen Bishop, the creepy little boy, is a symbolic stand in for Matt Weiner. Later Googling failed to turn up the name of the person being interviewed, (I was half asleep), but I did think it makes an interesting aspect of the show, especially considering that the boy that plays Glen is Weiner's oldest son.

If anyone does remember that NPR interview I would appreciate a link to the original.
posted by daHIFI at 8:36 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


It had its interesting parts but for the most part I found it a slow, aimless examination of some despicable people.

The show is the slowest burn in the history of tv. the first three seasons have been a first act, a shiver before the plunge. We've seen the First Wife, the First (real) Job in the society of the post-war fifties and early sixties. We've seen how comfortable Don is as a creature of those times, and how poorly Peggy, a creature of the changes to come, fits in.

The first act ended in season 3; season 4 began the second act. The real turmoil is just starting. If Weiner writes at the same pace, seasons five and six are going to be his second reel. These will bring huge social change to all of the characters. The first few seasons have all been in service to the next couple.

It's as yet open whether we're watching the tragedy or redemption of Don Draper and the corruption or triumph (or sidelining) of Peggy Olsen. We're going to see the conflicts of Don/Dan for certain. I hope we get to see more of the choices Peggy has to make too. Still, we aren't close to the payoff for any of the major characters yet (poor doomed Joan), but S5 and S6 should put these characters through their greatest challenges so far.
posted by bonehead at 9:06 AM on April 1, 2011 [12 favorites]


Yeah I love Mad Men but I would never dream of watching it week to week, this is the slowest moving series ever, like it took 2 seasons of build up for "The Suitcase".

It's *the* DVD marathon show, even more so then The Wire.
posted by The Whelk at 9:11 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


but I did think it makes an interesting aspect of the show, especially considering that the boy that plays Glen is Weiner's oldest son.

!!!! WHAT! Wow. That...wow. That makes me want to go back and watch the series over again. And...I suppose that I have the time now.

Also: From the Q&A linked:
Q: What's your favorite part of doing the show?

A: That had to be having lunch with my dad at craft services. I really like it a lot because we were both eating lunch and we were both at work.

That's made me more than just a little weepy.
posted by ColdChef at 9:23 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also also: ARLO WEINER.
posted by ColdChef at 9:29 AM on April 1, 2011


Yeah I am really looking forward to this becoming more of The Peggy Show in the next couple seasons. Season 4 did great stuff with Don and Peggy's relationship, giving it more screen time than it had ever had before. Now Don's becoming Roger, Roger's becoming drunker, and Peggy is presumably on her way to becoming Don. I love this show and I am glad that its future is assured for a while now, even if I have to wait another 9 months for more episodes.
posted by silby at 9:55 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


TV show about advertising, delayed by negotiations over ... advertising.
posted by Afroblanco at 9:58 AM on April 1, 2011 [5 favorites]


God, Joan's going to be heartbreaking as much as Peggy is going to come more and more in to her own.
posted by mippy at 10:00 AM on April 1, 2011


Having Sally age a bit fits into some rumors I've heard on set, namely slowly phasing Don out of the show entirely.

What what what what?

As sad as I am that we're going--what, a year and a half?--without new episodes, I was really disappointed that the last one skipped so little time. I really liked the disjointed feeling between the first and second seasons. Makes it feel more like the show is an opportunity to peek in on someone's real life than a constructed story.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 10:06 AM on April 1, 2011


If anything I think Peggy is more interesting than Don.
posted by Artw at 10:12 AM on April 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


See, and I think Don is more interesting than Peggy. Don't get me wrong, I think she's great, and in general I liker her story arcs (except for the ones that involve her family or the ones with the preacher -- yuck). But she's also a vehicle for some of the series' more heavy-handed feminist morality tales. I think I like the show best as a delicate balance between the forces of Don and the forces of Peggy.
posted by Afroblanco at 10:18 AM on April 1, 2011


Having Sally age a bit fits into some rumors I've heard on set, namely slowly phasing Don out of the show entirely.

What what what what?


Without giving to much away (or my sources) the general arc WOULD SEEM TO BE

Don fading into the background
Roger leaving
Betty leaving
Tragic Joan
Peggy becomes the central protagonist
posted by The Whelk at 10:19 AM on April 1, 2011


Barring a major cop-out, I anticipate Joan's story will be hard to watch, the price of the Faustian choice she's had to make. Joan could be a bitter, bitter woman in the seventies.

I think Betty, Roger and Cooper will naturally fade.

I hope Peggy becomes more of the centre of the story. She needs to stop being just the ingenue though.

I really hope Sal comes back, as a cameo if nothing else. He's the one character I miss from the Sterling-Cooper days.
posted by bonehead at 10:26 AM on April 1, 2011


Sal is unlikely to come back - the actor is now semi-retired and runs an antique store in NOLA


I still think they lack a Gay, and with the sexual revolution coming up, they need to bring Kurt back or explain WHY the head of TV keeps running off the LA, dresses slightly more hip, and has never been seen with a woman.
posted by The Whelk at 10:30 AM on April 1, 2011


I sort of felt like the weirdness from Harry last season was because he and his wife(? is she real or am I forgetting something that happened there?) were becoming kind of swingy. Also yeah he was hitting on one of the short forgettable guys at one point I guess.

Also jelus that the Whelk has Sources. Not even that they're Mad Men sources. I'm not old enough to have sources about anything interesting.
posted by silby at 11:00 AM on April 1, 2011


Oh yeah, Harry has a wife - Jennifer.

Them being closet swingers would be so ...so deliciously wonderful.
posted by The Whelk at 11:07 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


yay! more mad men is a good thing. Bonehead, I love the way you've framed the show's (eventual) three acts upthread. I hope Wiener gets as many seasons as he needs to tell his complete story.

And, c'mon, Draper isn't going anywhere. He's the most recognizable thing about the show, and possibly its biggest draw.
posted by milestogo at 11:09 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah but the end of last season was pretty much setting up the idea of Don's increasing irrelevance, or at least that he belongs to the past and not the future in the frame of reference in the show. When he decided to SPOILER SPOILER instead of SPOILER, it draws a pretty clear parallel between Don and the already-irrelevant Roger. Don may not leave the show all the way through its run, but his role will be less and less of the type-A avant-garde superhero.
posted by silby at 11:37 AM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Silby, I've seen the entire show, but it still took me like three or four minutes to figure out that your spoilers probably referred to mouseover to see spoiler. Anyway, I didn't really see that as a parallel between him and Roger, but rather an attempt to be corrective for his last mouseover. For all his gestures toward being progressive, Don really wants to see himself as a family man. Which is actually a major difference between the two dudes.

Which is kind of why I'd hate for all that to be true--because we'd lose Sally if we lost both Betty and Don. Though I do like the idea of calling a show "Man Men" and having it truly focus on female characters by the end.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 11:45 AM on April 1, 2011


Right, the turning point for Don came when (ok...spoilers from here on out) Megan acts as a gentle and loving mother toward his kids. There is an obvious parallel with Roger (as Joan points out in the episode) but I think this showed some of the differences --- in Don's mind, at least.

I do agree that Draper will probably be someone who belongs to the past, and who can't quite feel comfortable in the world anymore, from here on out. But I think that will still be a central theme of the show, rather than abandoning him as a character to focus on Peggy.
posted by milestogo at 12:42 PM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


The show's first episode was Peggy's first day on the job, which supports the interpretation that she will become the central character.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:54 PM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure I would like Peggy being the central character. I do like the ensemble nature of the show and would like to keep most of the characters on board. The only one I would like to see less of is Peter, though his wife Trudy is such an awesome character she almost compensates for my having to watch that little weasel whine and sleaze his way through life.
posted by orange swan at 2:42 PM on April 1, 2011


I listen to NPR on my alarm clock as I wake up, and one morning I heard an interview with a woman who said that Glen Bishop, the creepy little boy, is a symbolic stand in for Matt Weiner. Later Googling failed to turn up the name of the person being interviewed, (I was half asleep), but I did think it makes an interesting aspect of the show, especially considering that the boy that plays Glen is Weiner's oldest son.

If anyone does remember that NPR interview I would appreciate a link to the original.


It was Tina Brown talking about this essay by Daniel Mendelsohn in the New York Review of Books.
posted by asterix at 3:11 PM on April 1, 2011


I lack sources completely -- seriously, I'm the most sourceless guy you know -- but what The Whelk is saying has been whispered often enough that even I have heard it. But really, though, there's just no way; a Sopranos without James Gandolfini is easier to imagine. You can't have the show without Weiner and you can't have the show without Don Draper. I mean, you can have a show, even a good show, but not this show. When Don was in California at the end of season two, would anyone have noticed (or cared) if there had been no cuts back to NYC? The other actors are great, their characters are rich and wonderful, but the show is about Don Draper.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:04 PM on April 1, 2011


I could actually see a show that evolves to a place where Don is a supporting character and the focus is more on Peggy with Don remaining as her mentor, but the narrative has given her more importance than him. The show is about Don's generation becoming irrelevant and what better way for that to happen than for him to fade into the background? I don't think we'd lose him completely, especially if Sally remains an important character - though she'll only be 16 by the end of the 60s, so as much as I'd like to follow her into adulthood, we might have to lose her and Betty.
posted by crossoverman at 4:54 PM on April 1, 2011


Yeah Don as Supporting Mentor and not Main Character is what was I think was being pushed. This being Mad Men a "slow writing out of the character" means 2 seasons, tops.
posted by The Whelk at 5:54 PM on April 1, 2011


With Don's new marriage we could keep Sally, if only cause we could use some plot backbends to keep Sally part of the narrative. I Like Sally. I want to watch her grow up. I want to watch her hit the Cultural Shift hard. It's like 2nd season BSG, I don't care if Roslyn gets shot in the cancer and cured, I think she's too good a character to just drop.
posted by The Whelk at 5:56 PM on April 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


a Sopranos without James Gandolfini is easier to imagine.

Yeah, I have to agree. Narrative-wise, it might be interesting to have Don fade, but hi there, this is TV. Hamm is the guy on the magazine covers, the iconic face of the show. He's not going anywhere. The advertisers, the network and the fans would all rebel.
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:20 PM on April 1, 2011


So we just got as far as The Suitcase. My god, that is an amazing episode.
posted by Artw at 11:37 PM on April 3, 2011


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