I decided to borrow Mad Men from the library and, surprise surprise, found myself completely hooked. I’ve spent the last month or so having 60s-style dreams in which I work at an advertising agency alongside the Mad Men gang, although I’ve just finished watching season four, which is as far as my library’s stock goes, so I fear these nightly shenanigans are over. I’ll have to start designing my own dream settings again, which is much more work. Until the library gets the fifth season, I plan to pretend I still have episodes to watch by sitting on the couch each evening and yelling, at regular intervals, “You’re a jerk, Pete Campbell,” or “Don’t do it, Don. Don’t do it. No. No no no. No no nononononononooooooooo! Don! WHAT ARE YOU THINKING, DON?! I thought I was finally getting to know you!!” I’m pretty sure I won’t even notice that there’s nothing on the screen.
As my good deed for the year, let me warn any future borrowers/buyers of season three that the synopses inside the DVD cover are TOO DETAILED. I read a few of season one’s (to try to remember which episode I was up to), and they were nicely vague (along the lines of “Roger and Bert make a big decision and Peggy gets a surprise”), but season three’s said things like (I’m making this up to avoid spoilers) “Don gets his arm eaten off by a giant rat on the same day that Sally runs away from home because she’s angry at her neighbour’s rooster for waking her up too early in the morning. Oh, and Pete dies.” Fortunately the only one I read was for an episode I’d already seen; I realised then that unless I wanted to have the story ruined, I was going to have to do a better job of remembering which episode to start with the next night. Season four’s synopses return to vague; obviously the writers for the previous season’s DVD cover were reprimanded or fired.
I have season one of Downton Abbey, patiently waiting for me to pick it up and give it a burl. Considering it’s as popular among people I like as Mad Men, I suspect I’ll soon be just as hooked and dreaming in a British accent. I’m not ready to move on from Mad Men yet, though; it still feels like it’s too soon. Hopefully a week’s worth of yelling at the blank TV will make it clear that it’s time to let go. For now.