‘Mad Men’ Digital Retrospective on Google Play Includes Free Episode

Mad Men,” as it nears the finish line after eight years on TV, is getting a virtual retrospective on Google Play that will allow fans to relive the show’s run — a promo that includes free streaming access to the series’ very first episode.

Under a pact with Lionsgate, Google Play is debuting “The Mad Men Experience,” at madmen.withgoogle.com. The website is billed as an interactive, art-exhibit-style destination set in the world of 1960s Madison Avenue with more than 300 pieces of content released for the first time in a digital environment. Those include rarely seen artwork interviews with cast audio commentaries and other features.

The deal is Google Play’s first digital fan experience for a TV show, and it’s aimed at driving viewers to purchase episodes and full seasons of “Mad Men” from the online store. In addition, for a limited time Google Play will stream season one, episode one (“Smoke Gets in Your Eyes”) for free on Google Play, available to users in the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Australia. All prior seasons of “Mad Men” also are available for streaming on Netflix, and for purchase on Apple’s iTunes and Amazon’s Instant Video services.

Google Play’s “Mad Men Experience” also will also be showcased at the Television Academy’s “A Farewell to Mad Men” event featuring panel discussions with the show’s cast and crew May 17 in L.A., moderated by Variety‘s Debra Birnbaum. The “Mad Men” series finale, “Person to Person,” will air next Sunday, May 17, at 9 p.m. on AMC.

“Our partnership with Google Play reflects our continuing commitment to create and deliver cutting-edge content that extends our brands for fans and newcomers alike to discover for years to come,” said Lionsgate exec VP of marketing Anne Parducci.

According to Google, Jon Hamm’s Don Draper has been the most popular character-name search on its service for every season — with one exception. During season one, Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) actually was the No. 1 most-searched “Mad Men” character on Google, with Don taking second place.

Over the show’s run, Google queries such as “how can I dress like the characters in ‘Mad Men’?” and “what do they drink?” were among top-searched questions related to the show. Fans also wanted to mimic the fab ’60s hairdos on “Mad Men.” The top five most-searched character hairstyles on Google, in descending order, are: Don Draper, Betty Francis, Joan Harris, Roger Sterling and Pete Campbell.

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