Marti Noxon weighed in on the sexual harassment allegation against “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner on Friday, saying she believes Weiner’s accuser.
In a series of tweets, Noxon–who worked as a consulting producer and writer on the critically-acclaimed AMC series–said that she witnessed the aftermath of Weiner’s alleged encounter with series writer Kater Gordon.
“I believe her,” Noxon wrote. “I was at work with her the day after what she described transpired. I remember clearly how shaken and subdued Kater was — and continued to be from that day on. Responding to her statement, Matt claimed he would never make that kind of comment to a colleague. But anyone with an even cursory knowledge of the show Mad Men could imagine that very line coming from the mouth of Pete Campbell. Matt, Pete’s creator, is many things. He is devilishly clever and witty, but he is also, in the words of one of his colleagues, an ’emotional terrorist’ who will badger, seduce and even tantrum in an attempt to get his needs met. This personality type can not help but create an atmosphere where everyone is constantly off guard and unsure where they stand. It is the kind of atmosphere where a comment like “you owe it to me to show me your naked body” may — or may not — be a joke. And it may — or may not — lead to a demotion or even the end of a career.”
Noxon went on to say that no one on the show challenged Weiener’s behavior in part because they were grateful to work with a man of Weiner’s talents, but also because of the uncertainty of the effects of coming forward, including potentially being fired.
“Taking that action is one thing to contemplate if you have money in the bank and family to fall back on — but quite another for people from all walks of life without a safety net,” she continued. “And when sexual favors are lightly added to the bag of tools one might use to stay employed and valued, it can be destabilizing or even devastating. It may not be illegal, but it is oppressive. I witnessed it and, despite the fact that that I was a senior consultant on the show, I also experienced it in my own way in my days at Mad Men. I believe Kater Gordon.”
Last week, Gordon came forward alleging that while working together late one night in 2008, Weiner said she owed it to him to let him see her naked. Gordon won a writing Emmy in 2009 for her work on “Mad Men,” but has not worked on a television show since she was let go from “Mad Men” at the end of Season 3. She was originally Weiner’s personal assisant before working her way up to writing.