A Misanthrope’s Guide to Television: Mad Men (spoiler alert!)

We all know that there is lots of TV to be watched on Sunday nights, and we all know that the TV fans that scream loudest are the Game of Thrones maniacs. Now, far be it from me to judge anyone for their choices in life, television or otherwise, but Game of Thrones is stupid (Ed. YOU TAKE THAT BACK). Full disclosure, I haven’t watched it, but I can only keep track of so many boobs and swords at once. So, in the event you need to stop looking up to the Khaleesi (or whatever), turn your sights on my hero: Joan.


Mother of dragons? Cute.

Joan never went to college, but she’s got a B.A. in bad-assery and that’s all she seems to need. In the final season premier, Joan takes matters into her own hands and is on her way to becoming an account executive OVERTHROWING THE PATRIARCHY. Her masculine counterpart, Roger, seems to be spiraling into a crisis only orgies and incense can resolve, as his daughter attempts to absolve him of his sins.

Meanwhile, Pete is happy, and Peggy isn’t! What?! But Peggy is riding high with a corner office and underlings while Pete seems to be feeling bohemian way out west. They’re both raging workaholics who define themselves through rank and recognition, so why does Peggy end the episode collapsed on the floor while Pete raves about some stupid sandwich to Don?

And Don? Don doesn’t show up for the better part of the first ten minutes of the episode. But this isn’t the Don I remember: No office. Turning down sex with strangers (real estate agents and horny widows). Rarely drinking. No fighting with his wife. Only having sex once (okay, twice). Who is this guy? Why is he feeding ideas to loser ad men in New York? Don is either off his game or seriously reevaluating his rules. Dick Whitman seems to have finally broken through the shell of Mr. Draper as his pupils deal with the costs of his lessons.

And so, surprise surprise, everyone who matters on Mad Men is having an identity crisis. Or, upsettingly, never showed up (looking at you Betty Draper, Sally Draper, Trudy Campbell— where the ladies at?).

It’s a Game of Thrones, but it’s closer to home.

Pete's winning! Just like Joffrey--oh, wait.

Pete’s winning! Just like Joffrey–oh, wait.

P.S. If you don’t like Mad Men OR Game of Thrones, you have two options: Watch Veep and revel in its joy, or sort out your priorities.

Images via and via.

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