Final Season of “Mad Men” Begins This Weekend

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April 11, 2014

The seventh and final season of AMC’s hit drama, Mad Men, is set to begin this weekend and it’s bittersweet. It will be great to find out what happens to our favorite characters, but it will also be very sad to see them go.

The season will be separated into two parts, each consisting of seven episodes. The first half, titled “The Beginning,” will air from April 13, 2014-May 25, 2014, while the second half, aptly titled “The End of an Era,” will air sometime in early 2015.  That is a painfully long break!

The sixth season was incredibly intense, particularly for Don Draper who, basically, got fired in the finale. It’s kind of amazing that it hadn’t happened earlier. The man may have been an award-winning advertising genius but his work ethic left a lot to be desired and has only continued to deteriorate.

What led up to that point? Well, it was a very transformative season for Mr. Draper who seems very tired of trying to outrun his past as Dick Whitman. He attempted to end his affair with Sylvia Rosen, give up drinking and wanted to move to Los Angeles with his wife, Megan, to get a fresh start. Unfortunately that plan quickly unraveled. Instead, his daughter caught him in bed with Mrs. Rosen and he gave up his chance to move to California. In the process, he may have also lost his wife and his job.

Maybe this is rock bottom for Don.  Perhaps that is why he finally decided to get honest in his meeting with Hershey. It seemed he won them over by pitching an idea that he claimed was based on a memory of his father buying him Hershey’s chocolate bars. After giving everyone that warm fuzzy feeling, Don dropped a truth bomb – he had lied and his childhood Hershey bars were actually given to him by a prostitute in the whorehouse where he grew up.

It was no big shock, therefore, when partners, Bert Cooper, Roger Sterling, Jim Cutler and Joan Holloway told him to take some time away from the firm “to regroup” and refused to give him a specific date when he could return. In the final moments of the episode, Don, flanked by his three children, stands outside the old whorehouse and openly tells them that it was where he spent his childhood. It seems like the beginning of an authentic life for the man who has specialized in selling lies, both personally and professionally.

There are other storylines that could be extremely interesting in this final season as well. Pete Campbell is dealing with the disappearance of his mother from a cruise ship after she allegedly ran off and married a possible con man. He and his wife, Trudy, are as good as divorced and he got booted from the Chevy account.

Meanwhile, Peggy may have had her heart broken by Ted but the newly-single maverick will have a chance to shine with Don on leave, Ted in California and all of the other men basically trying to put their lives back together. Her ability to be strong and discrete over the years, despite the brutal things she endured, just might pay off in a big way next season.

While there are several other sub-plots bouncing around, one that could be particularly interesting is the relationship between Joan and Roger. In the finale, it showed him going over to spend some time with their (secret) son, Kevin, and they are both single now. Will they finally end up together? It could happen!

So many things are possible in this final season. What would you like to see happen? Are you hoping Peggy and Pete find their way back to each other? Is Don going to make it through this alive?  Will he go to jail for years of impersonating a war hero?  It should be very interesting to see how this all wraps up!

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