The Mad Men season 3 finale came to an intriguing close as the characters, and the story, are all set to reinvent themselves. More than 2.3 million viewers watched this episode, the biggest audience the program has seen since the season 3 premiere.
The Emmy-winning AMC drama has earned critical praise and a bevvy of high-class advertisers, but attracts an intellectual audience that some say is waning. The latest tally is good news.
You have to invest a part of yourself in any entertainment experience if you want it to be meaningful, and Mad Men requires some thinking to appreciate the understated characters, humor, and nuanced dialog. It's by far the best writing on television.
All of season 3 was dark and deep, with masterful brooding by Don Draper, soul-searching by his wife Betty, and conflict among account execs at the Madison Avenue ad agency Sterling Cooper. Dialog is spare and --with the exception of Episode 6, "Guy Walks into an Ad Agency"-- the plot moves slowly. But bubbling below the surface are complex issues about love and fidelity, happiness and work and identity, all set against the ticking time bomb of the 1960s.
The Mad Men season 3 finale achieves what all good storytelling strives for -- an affection for the characters and a provocative story that, like the ending of a good book or the crinkly wrappers in an empty box of chocolates, leaves you craving more.
Are you mad for Mad Men?
Photo by Carin Baer/AMC