A fan recently requested that we write why it is we don’t like Mad Men (as mentioned here). We aim to please, so here you go.
I’m sure the Libra has more analytical reasons than myself, but for me it boils down to one simple thing: I have major ADD, and I find Mad Men really freaking boring. I’ve watched all of season 1 and the first half of season 2, and there were probably two, maybe 3 episodes where I was actually captivated by the plot. It had its moments (I remember liking an episode where Christina Hendricks and that silver fox guy were carrying on in a hotel room; Don Draper’s wheel speech in the first season finale), but overall it just couldn’t beat Words with Friends in the battle for my attention.
Naysayers will talk about how the focus of Mad Men is all about the characters and its emphasis on character and story development rather than shocking plot twists like shows such as (the far more entertaining) The Vampire Diaries. That’s fine. I don’t need surprising werewolf bites at the end of all my shows. In fact, my favorite show of all time, Friday Night Lights, is an excellent example of a show that manages to weave together character development, a well-paced but (some might say) non-exciting, realistic story, and sweeping shots of Texas scenery to create a flawless final product.
But anyway. Mad Men is not the worst show on TV, obviously (hi, Gossip Girl! Please keep trying to make your abusive attempted date-rapist a well-liked character!). One time I even pretended to be Don Draper (read: I drank bourbon while watching), and it wasn’t the worst way to spend the hour (because I got distracted by Angry Birds and then got really into beating a certain level). But the point remains: it can’t keep my attention, and all the Emmys in the world aren’t going to change that.
Much in the same way that we don’t like 30 Rock, we just don’t like Mad Men. Before you jump to the defense of either show, keep in mind we’re not trying to convert you. It’s not like when we proselytize in the name of the Friday, the Night, and the Lights. If you want to watch beautiful women put their hair up and wear early 1960s fashion, that’s fine with me.
Someone recently told me, “Your blog is a hater blog.”
“Nuh-uh,” I said, “we love Kanye.”
“Oh, sure, the King of Haters!”
He had a point, but I don’t like Ben to be right, like about things like whether or not his striped shirts are hipster or not, or if I’m a hater.
Maybe taking the opportunity to explain hating on Mad Men indeed puts our blog in the ranks of Haters, when all our friends, fans, and enemies (who, no doubt, have stalked this blog) seem to love this show.
The problem is, you can share the same politics, music taste, and food choices as your friends. You guys can trade books of poetry, mixed cds, and food on picnics on mountainsides. But when it comes to t.v., you’re on your own. My point isn’t so much why I can’t stand Mad Men— it’s just I don’t want people to convince me why I should like it or be surprised that I don’t.
My friend Bridget, who I call my Think Tank, put it this way when I was talking about Glee with her: “Look, I watch this with the Virgo every week. I go because she loves it. But if she can’t convince me to like it, you can’t either.”
Friends, let your friends hate. If I don’t care about love affairs in an advertising agency, that’s my business! If I think early 60s fashion, while interesting, is creepy, that’s my business! If I’m tired of “smart” television, please keep in mind that this does not make me an idiot; it means I’ve spent my time being smart in other ways, and when I turn on the television, I sometimes just need some dumb shit (FNL notwithstanding) to get me through the evening. Mad Men ain’t it. No offense, darlings. Let’s all move on, our souls intact.
–Famous For Bad Reasons