The Best There Ever Was

Once in a great while in the human experience one comes along that is so rich and so enjoyable we wish it could be prolonged. Please don’t let it be over, your mind races ahead to possibilities of prolonging the interaction. Frequently we drift along afterwards vainly trying to recreate that panacea of celebrating the glorious mountain top euphoria of Bernard Malamud’s Roy Hobbs (“the best there ever was”.)

I approach each episode of Madmen with that kind of anticipation, will this episode give me that kind of adrenaline rush?……..like 0-60 in a 1969 GTO Judge…….whooosh. Madmen is now in it’s 7th season 703 is behind me, I can’t help the feeling of pending doom, not so much for the (almost certain inevitable Dark Knight crash and burn?) but for the already determined conclusion. The director, Matt Weiner, is already shooting the announced concluding episodes, there will be 4 more Sundays this season and 7 next year. Weiner who cut his teeth as a writer for The Sopranos has almost single handedly ushered in the Second Golden Age of TV by bringing back high quality dramatic programming to Cable TV, which of course has had the copy cat effect on Network TV as well as most of the Cable Channels. Beginning with HBO, then AMC, followed by Showtime some of the finest entertainment in decades is available throughout the week. Thank God for DVR’s.

It is difficult to single out the best scenes of Madmen, there are so many to choose from, and so many richly developed characters, but I have selected 2 as representative of everything that separates the show from the pack; dialog, editing, timing, attention to period detail are all on display. I feel like I am in the room, back in the 60’s on Madison Avenue relying on wit and imagination and guts to close the deal. John Hamm has his character down perfectly in the scene, Don Draper is the creative genius behind the Ad Agency, the ticking time bomb waiting to disintegrate Manhattan. But here he makes you weep with the majesty of creative genius.

The second clip reveals Peggy Olson played by Elizabeth Moss metamorphosing from secretary to Ad Man (gender reference intended) much to the delight and chagrin of Roger Sterling Company President, played by John Slattery my favorite sob. She has struggled to play in a mans 60s world but she is learning how to be as ruthless as the rest of them.

These clips are not necessarily the best but they are representative of the shows quality and do not require years of show familiarity to follow.

This weeks show ended with the word Okay……and many of were practically screaming at our TV’s nooooooooooooooo. Then, as usual, the ending music was an authentic piece form the 60’s Jemi Hendrix 6-9. And I thought ohhh okay I get it.

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2 Responses

  1. That first clip was a bit “heavy” and the second one was hilarious.

    Since I have limited cable, I don’t have AMC but I learned that I can watch episodes for free at AMC website for a certain number of days after it airs. So I may watch one episode a day of the ones still available.

    I’d also like to see House of Cards, as I like Kevin Spacey, but it looks I have to become a Netflix member for that.

    I can’t use any of the “free TV” apps for “technical” reasons unless I invest in a router.

    Been to Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods yet? (Just saw your comment at Fakename’s blog.) Trader Joe’s has a great deal on 2 pound bags of tortilla chips.

    One thing I like about Whole Foods is their sausages. Lots of funky types, including chorizo, garlic and basil, and others. I either grill them or use them in my spaghetti sauce. Also, a nice selection of “flavored” hummus. Price is right when they’re on sale.

    Bring your own mug up to 22 ounces and you can fill it with any of their three coffees of the day for $1. But lately it seems to me they’ve been using too much water and the coffee tastes “thin.” For about the same price, I can go to Circle K with my own mug (up to 22 ounces) and get some nice strong coffee, including Ethiopian.

    Maybe you can do a post on your visits to these two.

  2. Well SC routers are cheap! Netflix is still a bargain, but you don’t have to watch House of Cards on TV just watch and read the news in Washington, it’s the same thing.

    The Carousel scene is one of the best in Madmen, as a matter of fact it was referenced in this past Sunday,s show as the closing music was the Hollies “Riding Along on a Carousel.” as Don Draper goes around and around in life and we view his spins thru the eyes of a child. It is painful to watch him try to redeem himself with his world after years of being the Michael Jordan of assholes.

    I am in no hurry to make the trek to Trader Joe’s.

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