It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad Men World


Om!

The final words uttered by, Don Draper in the Mad Men series finale.  Such a small word, but yet it has such a vast meaning.

The sound first appears in the Upanishads, a collection of sacred texts that inform Hinduism. The Mandukya Upanishad, which is entirely devoted to om, begins “Om is the imperishable word. Om is the universe, and this is the exposition of Om. The past, the present, and the future, all that was, all that is, all that will be is Om. Likewise, all else that may exist beyond the bounds of time, that too is om.” Like I said, Om may be such a small word but it truly is BIG.

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Don Draper finds his Om. In that moment, the past, present, and future all come together within his exhale as that little smirk creeps across his face while he’s sitting in Padmasana (pod-MAHS-anna) Lotus pose.

I have to admit, I wasn’t completely impressed with this wrap up series finale. (At first). I felt short changed, like I was tantilized with this great expectation and then…this. Like a promising date that seems too good to be true and then you realize what did I miss. It leaves you hanging, it leaves you to your imagination, and what a vivid imagination I have when it wants to work.

Did Don go back to McCann? Did he really write the Coca Cola ad? Did Peggy write it? There was much foreshadowing within the preceding Mad Men episodes and the product placement or hints of Coca Cola work forthcoming that could lead one to believe the possibility. Again left to our imaginations.

But that is in true Don Draper fashion, you’re left wondering. And as I mulled this over and honestly I watched the episode twice, since AMC was airing it quite a few times last night. I needed to absorb it all in just one more time. And I really can’t shake the feeling that Don finally came full circle. The Om moment really was all of his life coming together in one exhale. Sounds all hippyish doesn’t it? But if you think about it, in that moment at the sharing circle when Leonard is letting go of all of his shortcomings, his feelings of inadequacey, lack of love, and all the other issues he’s facing…Don wakes up. He embraces Leonard and in that bonding moment both men are sobbing.

Let’s face it, Don had a tortured troubled life as a child. It had a major impact on him in his adult life as we’ve seen throughout the seasons. Is it an excuse for the way he acts? No. But it explains his psyche.

And ohhh Peggy. What hopes I had for you. I feel like they packaged you up with a cute pink bow and broke you down in a way. Not that I didn’t want true love and happiness for you WITH a successful career, but the way this all went down, it seemed like they half assed your life just for satisfaction sake.

steggyloveWe all know you don’t Need a man to be happy, Peggy Olson…but I admit I squeeled like a little girl when Stan professed his love for you over the telephone. And your reaction, was almost in pure Peggy form. A little overwhelemed, a little surprised, and a whole lot of emotions coming forth. Although I kind of wished you would have gone into business with Joan, even if it wasn’t your main goal. I just hope your bad ass self that strutted through the halls of McCann, hungover, with a cigarette hanging out of her mouth, and risque painting in tow, sticks around and doesn’t take any shit!

Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson - Mad Men _ Season 7B, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Courtesy of AMC

Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson – Mad Men _ Season 7B, Episode 12 – Photo Credit: Courtesy of AMC

I honestly was more curious about Peggy’s future than anyone else. I had a vested interest in Peggy’s life. As a woman in the late 90’s early 2000’s who worked in advertising, that sexist mindset still existed, although not to the extreme extent it did during this era.

And what an era it was, the beginning of the 70’s and Pete Campbell tells Peggy Olson she will be a copywriter or copy editor (I can’t remember at the moment) by the 1980’s she mutters something about that being so far away. But lets face it, she has gusto, she has the knack for what it takes, except she’s not a man… She may have written that Coca Cola hilltop ad for all we know, since we are left to our imagination.

I won’t go into the entire show and how the finale still leaves me wanting more. I want to know what happens to Betty. How Sally and her brothers grow up. How Henry handles her passing. I want to know if Pete Campbell remains faithful to Trudy, during their future life in Kansas. I want to know what happens to Joan and her Harris Holloway Production company. I’m happy that Roger acknowledged their child, although he always had in his own way, and made arraingments for his future in his will. I’m glad Joan accepted it as well. And Meredith, you and your pig latin will do just fine 😉

I will say that the series finale episode for me comes to a close in those words from Don. Simple yet powerful.

Om 🙂

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19 thoughts on “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad Men World

  1. It must be difficult to wrap up a show like Mad Men. I was looking forward to it also. I admit it took me a bit of pondering to take it all in. I didn’t love it, but I think it was a satisfactory way to end things, without really ending them because that is life.

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  2. I just don’t know why that ad had to play after the om moment. 🙂

    Back when Breaking Bad was airing, oh my god, the ricin cigarette speculation seriously drove me to step back from commenting on the show.. it drove me crazy. I’d been doing recaps of the show on a forum I frequent while doing a rewatch leading up to the new episodes, and I was so annoyed by it, and by the idiotic speculations people were making that I stopped doing the recaps for the final 8 episodes.

    And I was shocked and quite upset to find that the speculation continued even after the show ended – in the final episode it was made very clear what was done with the ricin cigarette. As in the character actually stated what he’d done with it. And even so, people kept saying it wasn’t true! What more did they need, a statement written with the blood of Vince Gilligan?

    Because of what happened with the ricin cigarette, I’m not such a fan of things being left to the imagination. As I said over at mine, the most idiotic speculation I have seen thus far was that the exact same woman with the ribbons in her hair was actually in the show *and* in the ad – the ad which aired on the show was made in 1971. Unless there was a rip in the space time continuum, or Marty Mcfly dropped by with the DeLorean, that is physically impossible.

    Yes, there was a lady with red ribbons braided in her hair seen in the show. Yes, there was a lady with red ribbons braided in her hair seen in the ad. No, those two ladies are not the same lady. f people look closely, they can tell they are not the same person. But forever more, there will be people who will claim they are the same person.. and this makes me want to bang my head into a brick wall until I knock myself out.

    Now that I think about it, I have seen one even more silly speculation and that was that Don was still DB Cooper even though it was not shown in the show. That the DB stands for Donald Bert Cooper. As in, he left the commune and went to hijack a plane for a tiny amount of money compared to the money he already has back at home!

    These people are claiming that because the calendar on Joans wall said November 1970, that there was plenty of time for Don to return, write the coke ad, then go walkabout again in time to hijack the plane as DB Cooper in November 1971. The moment Don spent watching the plane on climbout in episode 13 only fuels their bizarre conspiracy theory.

    Oh, and that Don was chanting home instead of Om. I have a cordless headset. I went back and watched it again. I listened closely. That simply did not happen. I could type that until I am blue in the face, it will not be believed.

    It is exhausting to read, and frustrating as well. I appreciate discussion of shows when it is intelligent, but this kind of bizarre speculation is a whole other animal, and I don’t enjoy it. 😦

    I am with you on wanting to know what happens with Joan – I think Holloway Harris could be a spin off show, and it would likely be a fantastic one. 🙂 I have deeply loved Joan as a character. Which makes it all the more frustrating, the Bruce plot. I think it would have been just as meaningful for her to leave the agency as she did, and choose to start her own business. We didn’t need the guy to get the point.

    But then again, without the guy, “I’ve been to the beach” would not exist, and I loved that line. It is so true!

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    • First I want to apologize for the longest delay in a reply ever. WP has been playing tricks on me, I’m commenting and it’s not staying, and then I have to approve all the comments multiple times. That being said, I’d have to agree with most if not all of what you said here.
      Although I’ve never watched Breaking Bad, I know shoot me lol. I can understand the correlation. You mean to tell me that people actually think the ribbon wearing lady is the Exact same one! Instead of beating your own head into the wall, I would like to do that to those people who believe such nonsense.
      The DB Cooper theory was far fetched although I could see it up till he was left at the bus stop after handing off his car and papers to the motel kid. After that, it lost the possiblity for me anyway. Anyone who still thinks that is a little short changed.
      I also appreciate intelligent conversation and even speculation when it comes to things like this, but outright bizarre is different animal all together.
      Joan and Peggy are by far my favorite for many reasons. I truly was more vested in their character development and what the future held for them, vs everyone else, even Don.
      Totally love that line as well. Again thanks for the comments and I’m really sorry for the overdue delay. Hoping that things here are ironed out now and back to working order. Hope you are enjoying your weekend and aren’t totally at a loss for what to watch this evening 🙂

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    • Omg I actually thought I did before the first line of the post and now that I see it, all these hours later I realize it’s not there. The damn computer or WP kept screwing up the size of the writer. No matter using the old version or the new posting version I couldn’t see more than 2 lines of typing. This morning, it’s fixed, I don’t know how. I do apologize, for spoiling it, but hope not too much of it was given away in the beginning part of the post. :/

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  3. I just wrote a post about the Mad Man finale. I was really happy with it. I’d read a prediction that it would end with Don pitching that famous Coke ad, so it was cool to see it actually go that way.

    We all know Peggy is going to move on to bigger and better things…

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  4. It never occurred to me to think of who wrote or pitched the Coke ad. It was just kind of placed there, disjointedly.

    This episode was really flawed, *especially* the scene with Peggy, and the admitted love interest. Fine and plausible for the guy, unreal for her, her response. They should have cut it short, where the later shot of the two would make it obvious what happens.

    Om, by the way, is just a word used to describe the repeating word or phrase chosen by an individual in meditation—for the resonance. It could be anything, really.

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    • I was unhappy with the Peggy scene, it was as if it was just thrown together with a lick and a promise just to make us all happy. Which in a teeny tiny way I was slightly happy but not the way I wanted her to get her “happy ending” Whatever, I’m not the writer so in my little world I’ll just cut the phone convo out and leave it with the last scene of them.
      From what I’ve been taught, although I’m not an expert, Om means that connection of past present and future. But it could also have many meanings depending on the origin and teachings.

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      • It was still plausible, the happy ending…just not the way it was handled/portrayed. A real soapy scene that didn’t fit the nature of the series. Passion with open eyes like that…creepy.

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      • Oh I agree, plausible but it was disjointed, didn’t fit Peggy’s persona, could have been done much better. Although going back a few episodes, not sure of the name, but she is out to dinner and I hated the fact in the scene she became a soapy girl in a way. She handed off her meal to her date and it just wasn’t the Peggy we’ve known to love. I did however love her badassness when she’s walking through the halls of McCann. So they showed us two relatively different sides of Peggy, which probably were there all along, but were never fostered in her story until those two episodes. All those seasons and now this. Ugh I can go on but seriously I would bore you lol.

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  5. Pingback: My Top Spills and Thrills of 2015 | Her Headache

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