I’m a huge fan of Mad Men. Even with no likable characters and its degradation of women, I still can’t help but like it. Why is that? Why do I, along with thousands and thousands of others, enjoy a show that looks back at a time and profession which was male chauvinistic, ego-centered, and manipulative?
Throughout the episode the new secretary, Peggy, is being shown around the office, she receives countless remarks about showing more leg or ankle. This comes from both men and women in the office. Maybe we accept it as viewers because that era seems to be over now or because the women during that time (in the show) seemed to accept their undermined roles and played along with them (“I’m your boss, not your boyfriend” scene).
I can think of shows today which do the same, like Entourage. A story about a young actor, Vince Chase, and his childhood friends pursuing careers and women in Los Angeles. I guess that time isn’t much different from today. Over 40 years after Mad Men is supposed to take place, the advertising world hasn’t changed much with its persuasion and manipulation of consumers, and its male dominated field. Of course, we have made few a couple advances in women’s rights that I feel like I must mention but I am still bewildered by the entertainment we receive from watching such a show. What makes someone, especially a woman (including me) keep watching beyond the first episode?
P.S. Unrelated to my post above, I just wanted to mention that I love the scene in which Greta, a researcher comes in with here cigarette report. I am a Psychology major but I want to go into Advertising (probably a reason I like the show) and a lot of people don’t understand the connection between the two. This scene proves that Psychology and Advertising are related!
Tags: Mad Men 2009