My Mad Men Reading List

September 29, 2009 @ 7:00 pm | Filed under:

A perk of living on the west coast is that by the time I get up on Monday morning, the East Coasters have written their morning-after-Mad-Men posts. I don’t know about you, but I love the dimension that internet recaps and essays have added to my television viewing. First I get to talk an episode over with Scott, and the next day I get to consider the insights of other ponderers. Beats a water cooler any day.

Here are my favorite of the Mad Men regulars:

The Footnotes of Mad Men. Want to see the Volkswagen ad Don is heaping scorn on? Unclear on what’s the big deal about a Hermes scarf? This blog is what an American studies course looks like in the 21st century—or should.

• The weekly open thread hosted by Ta-Nehisi Coates at The Atlantic. Thoughtful, intelligent discussion in the comments.

• The TV Club at Slate: author Patrick RaddenKeefe and Slate editors Julia Turner and John Swansburg post letters to each other in which they take turns probing the night’s themes, twists, and tensions.

Got any Mad Men must-reads in your reader?

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8 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Hannah says:

    Fun trivia: Patrick Keefe and Julia Turner were high school classmates of mine. Actually I think Julia was a year or two behind me. Anyway.

  2. Hannah says:

    Speaking of shows, did you watch the Flashforward premier on Thursday? What did you think? Is it maybe the heir to LOST (aside from Penelope and Charlie showing up)?

  3. lickona says:

    Some of us have to wait and buy it in iTunes on Monday, which makes Monday internet usage a dicey proposition. SO. MANY. SPOILERS. Fun fact: Footnotes of Mad Men got a book deal!

  4. Melissa Wiley says:

    Flashforward (SPOILERS BELOW, BE WARNED): I did indeed watch it, and I’m intrigued. There is never enough LOST in my life. I’m curious to see what the show’s take on the paradox issue will be, since it seems the central challenge: how does knowing about the future affect the future? I’ve just begun Macbeth with my Shakespeare kids and we talked a bit about self-fulfilling prophecy (some of us did, at least, during the lunch gathering before our club meeting), and the next day I watched FF and saw how intensely the self-fulfilling prophecy question must certainly affect the unfolding of this narrative. The wife admits to her husband that in her flashforward she saw herself with another man. Does this plant a seed of doubt that would never have existed without the future glimpse? Does his shock over the notion that she COULD betray him cause him (and her) to behave in ways that create a rift between them? I’m interested to see where the show is going.

    What was the thing that bugged me, though? I have to ask Scott. I’ve forgotten already.

    Best moment, I thought, was the horrible bit when the cop realized he hadn’t caused the terrible traffic accident—that something much bigger and more terrible still was going on, and for a split second he registered *relief* that it wasn’t his fault, before the real, larger, inexplicable horror began to penetrate his understanding. :::shudder:::

    Matthew, re Mad Men spoilers: there was a discussion of exactly that topic on Ta-Nehisi’s blog yesterday. Interesting comment thread.

  5. Hannah says:

    Maybe the thing that bugged you was the thing that bugged me, that I still don’t understand: Why did O. suddenly send her husband a text that said “I hope I never see you again”??? Or did I totally misread that?

  6. Melissa Wiley says:

    I think it’s a joke thing between them. In the early scene when he opens the safe to get his gun out, there’s a similar note from her saying “I hate you” or something like that. I think she does that to be funny, meaning exactly the opposite of what she writes.

    What did you think of the second episode?

  7. MelanieB says:

    I don’t watch Mad Men; but I’ll jump in on the Flashforward discussion….

    SO far I like it; but can’t quite tell if I like it because the premise is fun to think about or because it’s good storytelling. I suppose that depends on how the story develops. The paradox thing might turn me off. They’ll really have to avoid the whole self-fulfilling prophecy loop or they’ll lose me. I’ve almost given up on Heroes in part because they play so fast and loose with paradoxes.

    In the second episode, I definitely saw the death of the female officer in Utah. The cliffhanger ending ensured I’ll tune in this week. I’ve been trying to figure out exactly where his daughter was and what she was doing that she knows the boy and he knows her mother and she knows the name of the “bad man”.

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