Skip to main content

Mad Men
(Courtesy AMCtv)
The Bechdel Test is usually failed in Hollywood—does your work have a scene with two named women, talking to each other, about something other than men?

This week's Mad Men episode surprised me in somersaulting over that threshold into a new realm: An initial scene with two African American women (Don's secretary, Dawn, and her friend Nikki, pictured above), without any men around at all, and which wasn't focused on them either. To be sure, a later scene with the pair was more about Dawn's work situation, reminding us that, yes, one of the partners hung himself in the office in 1967, but this was a new mode for Mad Men storytelling, which heretofore has been told from the perspective of the squares adjusting to the culture of the 1960s.

And we had plenty of that this week as well—Don and Megan turning down the opportunity to swing; Joan visiting a "telephone diner" and the Electric Circus with a visiting gal-pal; Harry and Ken meeting with the Dow Chemical folks to figure out a way to distract America from the fact that people would like them more if they'd stop dropping napalm on children. (Answer: Broadway!)

Beyond that, the episode centered around divided and tested loyalties: Peggy betraying Stan's confidences in pursuing the Heinz ketchup-is-not-catsup work (which both firms lost, despite Peggy's adapting Don Draper's "change the conversation" pitch to MSG); Harry testing SCDP's loyalty to him versus Joan; Don's rather extreme (but not unexpected) possessiveness over Megan's having to do a love scene in her soap; Dawn's test over covering for Scarlett's desire to clock out early.

In the meantime, we're about a week or so away from the MLK assassination, but I think one of my favorite cultural writers is absolutely on point as to what's really down the road:

More recaps: Alan Sepinwall; Matt Zoller Seitz; Noel Murray.

Originally posted to Adam B on Mon Apr 22, 2013 at 11:16 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

Tags

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site