×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Emmys: Major Blows for Don Draper in ‘Mad Men’ Sixth Season

Crises hit peak for Don Draper

The sixth season of AMC’s “Mad Men” saw a haggard Don Draper drinking, lying and cheating more than ever. All of this led to the final scene in the season-ender, in which Draper was put on sabbatical from the prized job he has for years used as a crutch to avoid facing the harsher realities of both his own psyche and the outside world.

Series creator and exec producer Matt Weiner says Draper’s emotional journey was the key storytelling element when he mapped out the season.

“We started to embrace the start of the season in a really different way,” Weiner says. “As soon as we realized we could enter the season in Hawaii, we were entering into Don’s state of mind at the time, and a whole new world to be explored.”

Weiner reflects on the similarities between the intensely personal internal struggles faced by Don, and the more external struggles faced by the show’s female and African-American characters. Don wants to define who he is, but struggles while living through a facade. Similarly, both the female and the African-American characters are living a somewhat fictitious version of who they actually are, particularly in the workplace.

There are differences, Weiner acknowledges.

“Don is not facing discrimination,” Weiner says, “but he is certainly trying to figure out who he is supposed to be. I’m always telling a story about the underdog. It’s a story I identify with. Don is incredibly lucky to have what he has, and I think that fits all the characters — whether it’s Sal, Ginsberg or even Betty Draper. Each needs to figure out who they are in a world that is not going to just give them things.”

Keeping the characters’ respective storylines fresh and compelling has not been a challenge for Weiner and his writers, as each season builds upon tenets established by prior seasons.

“This quality of being an underdog, of being an outsider and working your way in, in some way, that’s the secret of success throughout history in America,” Weiner says. “But the question I had to explore is: How do you navigate that into these characters’ lives?

“There are repercussions for (Don’s) actions. We saw this from the other end of things. It may be the best thing that ever happened to him. His creative prowess is not enough to make up for the destructive selfishness of the way he behaved towards the firm, forcing them to merge and then going to war against their partner. No one’s creative genius can outweigh that. … There is a price to pay for all of this.”

More TV

  • Joel Kinnaman Mireille Enos Esme Creed

    Amazon's 'Hanna,' New Season of 'False Flag' Lead Strong Berlinale Series Lineup

    Amazon Prime Video’s upcoming high-concept thriller “Hanna” will debut at the 2019 Berlinale Series, with its stars – Esme Creed-Miles, Joel Kinnaman and Mireille Enos – expected in Berlin for its premiere. Netflix also features in the lineup and will debut “Quicksand,” its first Swedish original. A roster of seven shows also includes big-ticket Sky [...]

  • China’s ‘Boonie Bears’ Reach Korea With

    China’s ‘Boonie Bears’ Reach Korea With Animated Series and Movie

    Two seasons of the hit Chinese animation series “Boonie Bears” have been licensed for release in South Korea. The deal was struck by animation studio Fantawild with content distributor Media to Media. The broker has acquired IPTV and VoD rights to “Boonie Bears: Four Seasons,” and “Sunsational Summer and Snow Daze,” a total of 104 [...]

  • Mike Royce24th Annual Critics' Choice Awards,

    CBS Orders Comedy Pilot 'Story of Us' From 'One Day at a Time' Co-Creator Mike Royce

    CBS has ordered a pilot for the comedy “The Story of Us” from writer and executive producer Mike Royce. The hybrid comedy tells the story of how an unlikely couple becomes a family through interviews and vignettes spanning 10 years. In addition to Royce, Nick Stoller and Conor Welch will serve as executive producers. Sony [...]

  • 'Schitt's Creek' Stars Reveal Dream Guest

    'Schitt's Creek' Cast Reveals Dream Guest Stars: Oprah, Beyonce and ...

    “Schitt’s Creek” has big dreams. Dan Levy, who stars as David on the series, says his wish list of guest stars includes Oprah, Beyonce, Mariah Carey and Gwyneth Paltrow. “All for different reasons, none of whom we’ll get,” he cracked at the Critics’ Choice Awards. For those who haven’t caught on to the “Schitt’s Creek” [...]

  • Bob Costas Olympics Mike Tirico

    Bob Costas Officially Out at NBC After Nearly 40 Years

    Bob Costas has formally parted ways with NBC after nearly 40 years as a sportscaster for the Peacock. Costas and NBC have been negotiating an exit agreement for months. Word surfaced last summer that he was preparing to end his tenure with the network. Costas confirmed the news in an interview with the New York [...]

  • Happy

    TV Roundup: Syfy Drops First Trailer for Season 2 of 'Happy!'

    In today’s TV News Roundup, Syfy drops the first trailer for the second season of “Happy!” and Imagine Kids & Family sets a partnership with Four M Studios.  FIRST LOOKS Syfy has dropped the first trailer for season two of “Happy!” starring Christopher Meloni and Patton Oswalt. The new season premieres Wednesday, March 27 at 10/9c [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content