This post contains spoilers!
Sunday nights are no longer full of Monday dread. I have something to look forward to at the very end of the weekend: a mind-bending episode of “Mad Men.” The show you love, full of characters you hate, and issues you hope to only deal with through barrier of your TV screen: infidelity, corporate hell, violence, and mortality.
For an office drama centered around a 1960s advertising agency, “Mad Men” has tackled very nuanced issues that remain relevant topics in our day and age. Anyone who watches the show knows the terrible way that women are treated: sexual harassment, rape, sexism, domestic violence, infidelity. And as of Sunday, all of the major female characters have experienced pregnancy. Keep reading »
Dating sucks, even when you’ve got the streetwise wisdom and looks of Joan Holloway. From Roger Sterling to Greg the rapey doctor to her will-they-or-won’t-they? moments with Don Draper, we’ve watched Joan fight like a lioness on her hunt for love. And, man, has she had to! I know I’ve watched “Mad Men” over the years and been consoled at the thought, Well, if even Joan gets wrapped up in relationship drama …
Joan gets a lot of one-liners on the show. Some of those zingers are about sex and dating, but others are dating tips that are good for anybody if you read them the right way. Fix yourself a stiff drink and find out what Joanie has to say has to say about your love life!
“Well, everyone knew [Joan's husband] had to go at some point, right? I mean, you can’t rape your wife in the office and not expect to go away. … It was the first time it was mentioned and I think it was a long time coming, for the audience in particular. I think everyone kept thinking he was going to go off to war and die at war. But I think Matt [Weiner] probably had a very good time keeping him around while people were going, ‘What’s going on with this guy?’ [Laughs] And he just kept being there and he just kept coming home! And I would have been disappointed if there wasn’t a moment that the rape, and that instant, wasn’t mentioned. So I found it very satisfying that she finally got to say, ‘You’re not a good man. And you know exactly what I’m talking about.’ And every viewer knows exactly what you’re talking about too, so it’s just this very satisfying moment.”
– Christina Hendricks talks to GQ about Joan Holloway Harris’s soon-to-be-ex douchebag doctor husband, who raped her in season two. There have been more than a few rapes and sexual assaults on “Mad Men,” but Joan’s was probably the most shocking. Not every person saw it as rape because they were engaged, seemingly a happy couple together, and she’s such a sexual woman. Yet Joan clearly didn’t want to have sex inside Don Draper’s office and her then-fiancé forced himself on her anyway, so viewers not only had to confront the fact that Joan’s “perfect man” was not as perfect as we thought, but also that date rape is a thing that happens, including by people you love. [GQ] (Image via AMCtv.com)
Sunday night’s episode of “Mad Men” was a climactic one, and possibly the best episode of the season. Peggy, fed up with being taken for granted by Don, landed a new job at a rival firm and resigned by Sterling Cooper Draper Price. Meanwhile, SCDP’s deal with Jaguar seemingly hinges on Joan sleeping with an exec from the car manufacturer. That Pete dared to bring this proposal to Joan was loathsome. The other partners’ (save Don’s) begrudging support of pimping out one of their most loyal and hardworking employees was disgusting. Even Don’s plea to Joan that sleeping with the exec “wouldn’t be worth it” (which came, unbeknownst to him, just a little too late) was not without room for criticism — his primary motivation was likely his ego’s desire to land the deal on his own merit.
But what of Joan’s decision to sleep with the Jaguar exec in exchange for partnership in SCDP (with a five percent stake)? We got a glimpse at Joan’s current home life as a single mom (her husband, Greg, having filed for divorce last episode), living with her judgmental mother, and it was clear that it’s not an easy, comfortable one. Was Joan’s decision to use her sexuality in the most blatant of ways to get ahead (exchanging sex for money) ultimately a feminist decision? Or was the fact that she was clearly conflicted — and certainly not “enjoying it” — a sign that she was clearly disempowered, whether she came out better financially or not? Jessica and I both had really strong opinions on the subject, so we decided to talk it out over IM. Read our convo after the jump and then share your views in the comments! Keep reading »
Last week, I got an email from an editor at The New York Post asking if I might be interested in modeling some “Mad Men”-inspired looks for a story she was working on. Janie Bryant, the costume designer for “Mad Men,” is launching her new clothing line and the editor at the Post had read my essay about Joan Holloway boosting my self-esteem, and thought I’d be perfect to model Janie’s new pieces. Of course I said “yes,” because “Mad Men” is my favorite TV show and I thought it’d be fun to dress up like Joan for a couple hours. Keep reading »
ZOMG, “Mad Men” has released a juicy clip from their next episode! I’ll be nice and save spoilers for after the jump. But I will say it stars Joan Holloway wearing some fab blue eye shadow. Keep reading »