Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I am absolutely in love with John Hamm. He is pitch perfect in Mad Men. I mean the scene where he finally, finally, admits to Betty that he "disrespected" her, this man who has built his entire identity on the supression of the truth finally being honest because he realizes that the perfect life he has envisioned is actually the life he wants. And it's all there on his face in that one moment, this desperate kind of hope that he can still fix things mixed with a deep, profound kind of sadness over how much he has hurt the people he loves. It's the kind of television that makes you sit up and sit in silence even after the show ends, just marveling at the brilliance of it all. As Don Draper, John Hamm is just wonderful and devastating. I agree completely with the weird bohemian in the third to last episode who tells him that her father likes him because "he doesn't talk much and he's beautiful." Which if you have eyes then you know is true. And then wonder of all wonders, I find out that my biggest TV crush is also funny. For proof just watch the above clip. I know I've sort of harped on Mad Men lately, but I can't get over how wonderful this show is. The season finale which aired on Sunday was something television shows rarely are; filled with quiet moments, some small, some large but none of them earth shattering, but which looked back on, amounted to something utterly meaningful and quietly momentous. It's a show about sad people living in a deceptively simple time. It's not nostalgia in the way we know it, where we recall fondly a golden age. It's about broken people who are only starting to notice the broken parts of the world around them. At first glance it's a show about the beauty and the gloss and optimism of the early 60s. But on closer inspection, it's really about the consequences of the fact that these things are crumbling right before the audience's and the characters eyes. It's a period show, where both the audience and the characters expect a perfect early 60s world that never really existed, and in its place find something far rarer, a living world with pain and sadness and above all beauty.

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