Mad Men: Season Two

Mad Men: Season Two

Set in 1960s New York City, Mad Men explores the glamorous and ego-driven “Golden Age” of advertising, where everyone is selling something and nothing is ever what it seems. And no one plays the game better than Don Draper (Golden Globe(r) – winner Jon Hamm), Madison Avenue’s biggest ad man – and ladies’ man – in the business. Returning for its second season, the Golden Globe®-winning series for Best TV Drama and Actor continues to blur the lines between truth and lies, perception and reality. The world of Mad Men is moving in a new direction — can Sterling Cooper keep up? Meanwhile, the private life of Don Draper becomes complicated in a new way. What is the cost of his secret identity?Mad Men returns, and guess what?  It’s still one of the best shows on TV.  Season two continues the slow progression to absolute greatness.  The first season left us with a number of cliffhangers, and the beginning of the second season doesn’t cleanly wrap things up.  Instead, we leap forward nearly 2 years and are thrown into an even more tumultuous time where the Norman Rockwell-idealized era is only ideal on the surface (slightly below we find rampant alcoholism, marriage dissolution, casual sexism and racism).  There is resolution, eventually, for all the questions left unanswered, but in true slow-as-molasses-but-still-riveting Mad Men form, we get to wait the entire season for answers.  

A lot has changed in these two years at Sterling-Cooper and it is exciting watching the 60’s progress through the unique lens of Mad Men.  Everything that made Season one incredibly compelling television is back. The terrific acting, pitch-perfect writing, gorgeous art direction and impressive attention to detail are all the unshakeable foundation to a meandering yet precise plotline that keeps the viewer glued to the television.  Special features include extensive commentaries and featurettes that examine 1960’s fashion, the rise of women in the workplace, and defining historical events of the era.—Kira Canny

Product Features

  • Condition: New
  • Format: DVD
  • AC-3; Box set; Closed-captioned; Color; Dolby; DVD; Subtitled; Widescreen; NTSC

3 thoughts on “Mad Men: Season Two

  1. Robert Moore

    One of TV’s best shows gets even better Update (1/11/09): MAD MEN just won the Golden Globe for the second straight year for Best Drama. Well deserved.Frankly, I’m pretty despondent about the future of quality TV on the major four networks. The recent cancellation by ABC of the breathtakingly brilliant PUSHING DAISIES was the first major blow. When a show this great can get cancelled for weak (not genuinely bad, merely weak) ratings, you feel that something has gone wrong with commercial television. For one thing, TV history is resplendent with shows that started off weakly and then succeeded a couple of years into their run. THE X-FILES, SEINFELD, THE OFFICE, and 30 ROCK all started off with weak ratings, only to build an audience later. The second horrific piece of news undermining my confidence in commercial TV was NBC’s announcement that starting next year Jay Leno will get FIVE HOURS (!) of prime time for a more politically oriented version of his talk show. First, why would we want Leno when we already have Stewart and Colbert? Second, this means losing FIVE HOURS (!!!!) of scripted programming on NBC each week. This is a recipe for disaster. And an act of despair. NBC clearly doesn’t think it can produce 15 hours of quality TV a week, so it is trying to produce only 10 and then take the super cheap option with Leno. NBC, I have news for you: you get what you pay for.MAD MEN could well be the model for successful quality TV shows in the future. Although it gets very low ratings, on AMC it is safe from cancellation because of its widespread critical acclaim. More and more, niche cable networks seem to be the place where quality TV series manage to thrive and avoid the constant threat of cancellation. AMC in fact has two superb series, MAD MEN and the very promising BREAKING BAD (which was seriously truncated by the writers’ strike last year) and they’ve announced a new Sci-fi series based upon Kim Stanley Robinson’s acclaimed Mars trilogy, about the settling of colonies on Mars. The series is taking its title from the first of Robinson’s novels, RED MARS.So, while I’m on the verge of giving up on ABC, NBC, and FOX (though under new head of programming Kevin Reilly its shows have become more interesting and he has so far resisted to kill shows prematurely as his predecessors did). CBS I gave up on years ago, since the network seems content to churn out an endless number of bland police procedurals. AMC, F/X, Showtime, HBO, ABC Family, the Sci Fi Channel, and similar networks may be where we all go in the future for the best shows.MAD MEN became the first show not on one of the big four networks or HBO to win the Emmy for Best Drama this past summer. It will almost certainly win again this coming summer, since Season Two was even better than Season One. Moreover, during Season Two the show started building a buzz, culminating with a great appearance by Jon Hamm on SNL, including a skit with some of his MAD MEN guest stars. The show became part of our cultural sensibility, inspiring magazine photo spreads. I still think the show is one that people tend to know about rather than know. Thankfully people who do not have access to AMC can catch up on DVD (I watch it as it comes out, but my cable company shows AMC in low-def rather than high-def, so much of the show’s physical beauty can only be recaptured on DVD or Blu-ray).As good as the show was in Season Two, the sophomore season was even more brilliant. In my review of Season One, I mentioned that Jon Hamm’s character Don Draper exemplifies Thoreau’s statement that most people live “lives of quiet desperation.” In Season Two, Hamm and his carefully constructed existence gradually begins coming apart at the seams. His Stepford Wife Betty begins to come apart at more than the seams. I really enjoyed January Jones in Season One, but primarily she was a beautiful manikin. In Season Two the human being inside is psychically rebelling against the roles she is being forced to play and the result is someone who is on the verge of collapse. One scene in particular was compelling. As she prepares for a dinner party she notices that one of the dining room chairs is wobbly. Moving the chair back and forth gives way to anger, as she displaces the stress of her life onto the chair and she begins to destroy and obliterate it. Indeed, the many moments where Betty loses control are among the season’s finest.January Jones’s amazing performance as Betty gets a bit less acclaim than she deserves in part because of Elizabeth Moss’s job as Peggy Olson. I think many people watching MAD MEN began in Season Two to realize that Peggy, as much as Don Draper, was central to the meaning of the show. I have very little evidence for this, but I believe that the show will end with Peggy Olson heading Sterling Cooper. The show started with her first day as an employee of the company, working as Don Draper’s secretary…

  2. Reconnecting To My Childhood "Time Won't Let ...
    Reconnecting To My Childhood "Time Won't Let ... says:

    Don’t Think Twice (It’s Alright) 0

  3. rynsbub "live to read"
    rynsbub "live to read" says:

    Best tv series ever!! 0

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