This season, Mad Men set in 1968, a time of powerful and exciting organizing in the U.S. feminist movement—while the fictional Madison Avenue advertising crew scribbles out new taglines for headphones, 1968 was the year feminists took to the streets to protest the Miss America pageant.
In AMC's wildly popular Mad Men, administrative assistants are sexy secretaries in a male-dominated world. Sue in Veep and April in recent seasons of Parks and Recreation portray a slightly more empowering though still-tired trope: the sassy secretary. In real life, the role of administrative assistant is, statistically speaking, woman's work. But at a time when four out of ten recession-era postgrads are working whatever jobs they can, the reality is that assistant work has recently transformed from a job young women approach with ambivalance to a job that feels reliable in an uncertain economy.
The Mad Men fans among us will never forget "The Other Woman." In a season filled with beautiful, heart-wrenching, affecting episodes, "The Other Woman" stands out as one of the best, and we aren't the only ones who think so: The episode is nominated for Emmys in the acting, writing, and directing categories this year. Not only that, the Daily Beast is publishing a two-part oral history on the episode with Christina Hendricks and Matthew Weiner, part one of which went up today.
If I hear another blogger/author/interviewer comment on Christina Hendricks' weight I might lose it. As if her body (omg BOOBS) wasn't enough of a focus already, now she is being picked apart for her appearance at the Golden Globes the other night. As you may have seen by now, Cathy Horyn fromThe New York Times claimed that "You don't put a big girl in a big dress" and ran this (distorted) photo of Hendricks:
We don't know about you, but we here at Bitch have been on the edge of our mid-century modern seats waiting to hear whether or not Mad Men is being renewed for a third season. Rumor had it that the show might get cancelled, but this Variety article confirms otherwise. Mad Men is coming back!
Let's all loosen our high-waisted secretary skirts in a collective sigh of relief.Mad Men has been written about many times, especially in terms of feminism and the gender politics portrayed on the show. And you know what that means, right? It's time for a Power Pack! So get your Manhattan ready, light a Lucky Strike (just as a prop, of course) and read on for links, video clips, and a discussion of the ladies of Mad Men.