Even when you say it’s not, it is. It *is* about money.
I’ve been watching with great interest the whole Mad Men story with Matthew Weiner, and how his battle with AMC to retain the series the way he wants it almost cost him the whole shootin’ match with Lionsgate. Weiner swears it’s not about money, but rather artistic freedom. Well, sorry Matt, but artistic freedom IS about money, or at least the freedom from being weighed down by its constraints. In other words, it’s always about money for somebody. Looking at the deal he finally struck with the studio (demands that cast members not be cut for financial reasons, Weiner’s reticence to give up two minutes of episode time so AMC could air two more commercials), money is indeed at the forefront of this drama — only with the studio on the major spending end.
I suppose that’s what producers do, after all. Spend money to bring something to the screen. And I’d be more cynical about the whole issue if MM was not my favorite show ever. Worst part: only three more seasons, and it’s all over for good. I guess it had to end somewhere. Truthfully, who wants to see Roger Sterling in a leisure suit? Or anyone else, for that matter? I think 1970 is a good place to stop if it all has to end. Besides, I’m sure Weiner wants the show to go out on a “high,” as opposed to dragging it into an era when the players would surely be watching themselves become extinct in a world that has definitely moved on.
Why do we (I) even get so incredibly attached to a made-up story on television anyway? The vicarious lifestyle, seeing people endure real problems like one’s own, fantasizing about being someone else…I suppose it all figures in. I know that’s why I love fiction, in books and on the screen. This show also brings back memories for me — a kid growing up in the 1960s and 70s. I recognize (and recall fondly) the clothing, the hats, the decor; everything has a personal place for me.
Mad Men will remain my absolute favorite drama of all time — unless something better comes along in the future, which just might happen. But I have to get through the final three seasons, which, at this rate, could take ten years.
What show is your favorite, and why? (Yes, this is where you participate in the discourse, my fiends.)
Yipes I’m late for the shower.