Critics have begun to worry about Mad Men. Gory lawnmower accidents? Unexpected death? Grueling, drugged-up childbirth? “Where have all the snifters of brandy and jaunty shrimp cocktails gone?” asks Heather Havrilesky of Salon. She’s kidding, of course. Mad Men has spun into insanity so quickly because that’s exactly what American life did then, and is still doing now.
We all fell for Sterling Cooper’s devil-may-care attitude the same way we fell for “Botox and real estate and every other slice of American pie that we just had to get while it was hot, hot, hot.” Sure, the lawnmower incident requires a healthy suspension of disbelief, but so did the dot-com craze. “Mad Men’s tendency to lean in to the almost surreal inhumanity of modern times” is “exactly what makes it worth watching.”