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"Mad Men"

By admin Published: July 26, 2007

If you haven't caught up with this AMC show, please do so tonight ...

First, the boilerplate from AMC:

In the second episode of "Mad Men" (Thursday, July 26, 2007 at 10PM ET), which many critics are calling the best new series of the summer, Don Draper (Jon Hamm) continues to conceal his increasingly complicated personal life, even in the face of Roger's (John Slattery) invitation to open up. Meanwhile, Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) pines for the absent Pete (Vincent Kartheiser) - still on his honeymoon - while fending off the advances of several of the men of Sterling Cooper.

Robert Morse, who received the Tony Award for the lead role in the original Broadway production of "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," guest stars as Bertram Cooper, one of the founders of the ad agency Sterling Cooper. John Slattery and his real life wife Talia Balsam (who also plays his wife on the series), Rosemarie DeWitt, Anne Dudek and Andy Umberger also guest star in this episode. ...

"Mad Men" is a new original series from AMC and Matthew Weiner, the Emmy-Award winning Executive Producer and Writer of "The Sopranos." The series depicts the ruthless world of Madison Avenue advertising in New York City in 1960. The series premiered on Thursday, July 19 at 10PM ET and had a 75% increase in audience compared to the time slot one year ago.

Now my thoughts: Very, very good show based on the four episodes I have seen. The series is doing a fine job of blending stories of the dream factory that is advertising (albeit with some creative license) and how real life doesn't quite match up with the dreams. It's also one of the best portrayals of everyday life in the early '60s that I can remember seeing. There's a scene coming up at a birthday party that, in a few moments, shows how utterly life has changed with regard to parenting and ''women's work,'' not to mention smoking and drinking -- both of which are copious throughout this show. Strong characters, with Don Draper the centerpiece -- the most troubled and enigmatic. Watch tonight; if you feel a little lost, AMC is replaying the first episode on Saturday. And keep watching.

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