Source: Image by G_marius
Mad Men is a TV series full of interesting and nuanced characters. They have many talents but also hide a dark side. Do you identify with any of them? Which one do you prefer?
On netivist we have controversial debates about the TV crime series, women shows and mockumentary-style sitcoms. Now it is time to discuss about one of the shows with the most loyal fan base: Mad Men.
Mad Men is an extremely successful drama series about one of New York's most prestigious ad agencies at the beginning of the 1960s. Mad Men depics the very sexist and competive environment where men and women are willing to do whatever it takes to succeed. Mad Men is one of the most popular and critically acclaimed series in what has already been considered part of a golden age in TV. The writers of the series have made a great job in depicting life and work dynamics in the 1960s America. The show focuses on the evolution on one of the firm's most talented ad executives, Donald Draper. But Don Draper is not alone in Mad Men, many other male and female very charismatic and ambitious characters complete the cast.
Mad Men characters
- Don Draper (Jon Hamm) starts as the creative director at Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency and eventually rises to become a partner at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce. Draper is the protagonist of the show. Don has made a career selling the promise of happiness, but the reality continues to elude him.There is always something missing in his life what he compensates with obsessive work, alcohol and sexual affairs.
- Betty Francis (January Jones) is Don’s ex-wife, is a mother of three, Gene, Robert and Sally. She incarnates the archetypal dissatisfied 1960s housewife, who sacrificed her career to support her husband, Don, the breadwinner of the family. After obtaining a divorce from Don, she marries Henry Francis, however Betty seems to still harbour some feelings for him.
- Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) was originally Don Draper's secretary. She has a talent and develops a strong ambition. Throughout the series Peggy has to fight harder than any of her co-workers. Being a woman and a former secretary makes things often more challenging. Nonetheless she manages to become the Copy Chief at Sterling Cooper & Partners ad agency.
- Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser), dissatisfaction fuels both Pete’s ambition and his success as an account man. He starts as a young account executive with good connections but many problems with his wife. Throughout the series he is protrayed as a rival of Don, helps opening the West Coast office of the company and become a partner of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce.
- Joan Harris (Christina Hendricks) starts the show as an office manager at Sterling Cooper, who acts as a mentor, as well as an occasional rival, to Peggy Olson (this relation mirrors that of Don with Pete). Joan has a long-standing affair with Roger Sterling, which results in her becoming pregnant with a son. Her ambition leads her to have sex with a client to become a partner at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce.
- Roger Sterling (John Slattery) was one of the two founding partners of Sterling Cooper. He is a charming man who has lived an easy life. Nonetheless he has to fight to keep control of the agency. Roger is twice divorced and later starts experimenting with drugs and the somewhat relaxed sexual norms typical of the 1960s.
- Ken Cosgrove (Aaron Staton) is very apt account executive. Initially he seems to spend more time drinking, flirting and gossiping than working, as some of his colleagues. In fact his true dream and passion is writing. Ken becomes Heads of Accounts Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, job that may end up being more demanding that he initially expected.
All of these characters have some strengths and weaknesses. They have talents and obsessions, dreams and concerns and each of them reacts in different ways to challenges they face.
Do you identify yourself with any of the Mad Men characters? Which one do you like the most? Vote in our poll and explain why or tell us about any other character you find
If you change your mind, you can change your vote simply by clicking on another option.
Mad Men characters: who do you identify with or you like the most?
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