Mad Men: Season 1 (2007)


Season 1
Mad Men

Critics Consensus

Oozing evocative early 1960s ambiance, Mad Men is a sly, subversive look at the American workplace that radiates class, wit, and an undercurrent of disaffection.



Critic Ratings: 38


Audience Score

User Ratings: 775
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Air date: Jul 19, 2007
Air date: Jul 26, 2007
Air date: Aug 2, 2007
Air date: Aug 9, 2007
Air date: Aug 16, 2007
Air date: Aug 23, 2007
Air date: Aug 30, 2007
Air date: Sep 6, 2007
Air date: Sep 13, 2007
Air date: Sep 27, 2007
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Mad Men: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

The debut series of Matthew Weiner's intense and stylish drama follows the lives of Madison Avenue advertising executives (so-called "Mad Men") in 1960. The series centers on Don Draper (Jon Hamm), the dashing and brilliant creative director for ad agency Sterling Cooper (series 1 accounts include Richard Nixon's presidential campaign and, appropriately, Lucky Strike, given the cigarettes smoked in nearly every scene). Don's charms extend well outside of the boardroom and into the bedroom: The married man has a free-spirited lover, Midge Daniels (Rosemarie DeWitt), who's his polar opposite, and a second mistress, Rachel Menken (Maggie Siff), a client whose independence challenges Don's views on women. Don's wife, Betty (January Jones), meanwhile, dutifully fulfills her role as housewife. But when she develops a mysterious ailment that causes her to lose feeling in her hands, she's sent to a psychiatrist to work through her problems. Over at Sterling Cooper, new secretary Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) tries to adjust to life in the boys club with guidance from seen-it-all bombshell secretary Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks). Young account exec Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser) also has his eyes on Peggy and quickly begins pursuing her, despite his upcoming nuptials. There's even more bad behavior at the office from skirt chasers Ken Cosgrove (Aaron Staton) and Paul Kinsey (Michael Gladis), loving but imperfect Harry Crane (Rich Sommer) and stuck-in-the-closet art director Sal Romano (Bryan Batt). Partner Roger Sterling (John Slattery) does little to set an example for his employees as he happily indulges in an array of vices and an affair with Joan. Senior partner Bertram Cooper (Robert Morse) is mostly out of touch with the staff, preferring to remain within the sanctuary of his giant office. In the midst of this workplace frivolity, Don learns that the picture-perfect life he's created for himself could be threatened by a secret from his past.


Jon Hamm
as Don Draper
Joel Murray
as Fred Rumsen
John Slattery
as Roger Sterling
Maggie Siff
as Rachel Menken
Bryan Batt
as Salvatore
Jared Harris
as Lane Pryce
Elizabeth Rice
as Margaret Sterling
John Cullum
as Lee Garner, Sr.
Kate Norby
as Carol McCardy
Jay Paulson
as Adam Whitman
Kristoffer Polaha
as Carlton Hanson
Robert Morse
as Bertram Cooper
Crista Flanagan
as Lois Sadler
Jim Abele
as Jack Kongi
Darren Pettie
as Lee Garner, Jr.
Christopher Allport
as Andrew Campbell
Ian Bohen
as Roy Hazelitt
Andy Umberger
as Arnold Wayne
Rebecca Creskoff
as Barbara Katz
Teddy Sears
as Kicks Matherton
Joe O'Connor
as Tom Vogel
Alexis Stier
as Mirabelle Ames
Bruce French
as Hugh Brody
Shayna Rose
as Rosemary
Irene Roseen
as Lily Meyer
Megan Stier
as Eleanor Ames
Randy Ogelsby
as Walter Veith
Paul Keeley
as Elliot Lawrence
Talia Balsam
as Mona Sterling
Kiernan Shipka
as Sally Draper
John Walcutt
as Franklin Newcomb
Joseph Culp
as Archie Whitman
Ryan Cutrona
as Gene Driscoll
Allan Miller
as Abraham Menken
John Cullum
as Lee Garner, Sr.
Jay Paulson
as Adam Whitman
Mark McGann
as Old Waiter
Channing Chase
as Dorothy Campbell
Teddy Sears
as Kicks Matherton
Christopher Allport
as Andrew Campbell
Bess Rous
as Marjorie
Gordana Rashovich
as Dr. Greta Guttman
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News & Interviews for Mad Men: Season 1

Critic Reviews for Mad Men Season 1

All Critics (38) | Top Critics (24)

It's way too obvious, as is much too much in "Mad Men," though the show clearly fancies itself one sly fox.

Jul 14, 2017 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Mad Men is progressing at a leisurely but satisfying pace.

Jul 19, 2007 | Rating: A- | Full Review…
Top Critic

Mad Men is a fantastic show.

Jul 19, 2007 | Full Review…

Compelling is the tension between Peggy and Joan.

Jul 19, 2007 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Watching it is like diving into a photo spread from an Eisenhower-era issue of Look magazine.

Jul 19, 2007 | Full Review…

He's one of the head sharks in a tank of ruthless Mad men whose mission is to seduce an increasingly savvy public.

Jul 19, 2007 | Full Review…

Dramatic, funny, insightful - and that's just in the first episode. This is a compelling slice of nostalgic Americana, looking back at a period of great change with knowing winks and uber-cool style.

Nov 16, 2018 | Full Review…

The writing is extremely weak, the plotting haphazard and often preposterous, the characterizations shallow and sometimes incoherent; its attitude toward the past is glib and its self-positioning in the present is unattractively smug...

Nov 5, 2018 | Full Review…

"Mad Men" delivers a textured feel of intimate immediacy - not just in a kinetic sense, not just in a period sense, but in the actual outward appearance of itself as a product.

Jun 14, 2018 | Full Review…

This is a rich and serious character study that also delivers moments of dark humour and sly sexuality.

Apr 26, 2018 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Mad Men: Season 1

  • 5d ago
    Great period piece as well as a character piece. It's definitely a must-watch!
  • Mar 15, 2019
    "Mad Men" gives us a fascinating and nostalgic look back to the '60s workforce in New York as well as explores its characters with serious depth and dark humor.
  • Dec 26, 2018
    1960s NewYork lifestyle makes everyone appear as if they are brazenly careless, and have redirected their self-preservation into the acquisition and maintenance of advertising accounts.
  • Sep 06, 2018
    Puntaje Original: 7.5 Cínica, audaz e inteligente. Mad Men logra compactar una complaciente historia sobre la publicidad y su influencia en el desarrollo de la sociedad.
  • May 13, 2018
    Mad Men è la storia di Don Draper, pubblicitario di successo nella New York degli anni 60 ma per estensione è anche la storia dei cambiamenti della società americana in quegli anni. Il successo di Mad Men non è dovuto solo alla credibile ricostruzione del periodo, o all’estetica raffinata, puntuale e organica, ma anche alla potenza della narrativa: la scrittura avvincente e i personaggi ben caratterizzati mettono in scena un dramma in costume che funziona su più livelli di lettura, da quello umano e intimo dei singoli personaggi a quello socio-culturale dell’America degli anni 60.
  • Feb 26, 2018
    Prima stagione di una serie che si prospetta tra le migliori mai create, originale e coraggiosa, sperando che il livello rimanga invariato per tutte e 7 le stagioni, cosa più unica che rara. New York 1960, Don Draper è il direttore creativo della Sterling&Cooper agenzia pubblicitaria di Madison Avenue, tanto elegante e stimato, quanto spietato e temuto, Don è la punta di diamante della società, non c'è problema lavorativo di cui non riesca a venire a capo prima o poi... e tutti pendono dalle sue labbra, dai dirigenti ai colleghi, alle impiegate. Inutile dire che tutta la prima stagione gira mirabilmente intorno a lui, personaggio scritto in modo pressochè perfetto, indimenticabile. Ma purtroppo per lui non è tutto oro quello che luccica...Pian piano, intrighi, fughe e sotterfugi tenuti nascosti a famiglia ed amici si faranno largo nella sua apparentemente vita perfetta, tra il mare di whisky e le tonnellate di sigarette che il nostro "eroe" consumerà per dimenticare e distrarsi dalle pressioni quotidiane. Tra le "qualità" in cui eccelle Donald Draper(anche se parliamo di Jon Hamm attore, non certo di Renato cosa un pò aiuta) ci sono soprattutto le donne, moglie e svariate amanti, che per un suo cenno non esiterebbero a gettarsi sotto un treno in corsa. Personaggione. Tra i molti comprimari spiccano su tutti la bellissima e fedelissima (e in piccole piccole dosi "depressa"...azz) moglie Betty, il collega sottoposto Pete Campbell che cercarà in ogni modo di fare le scarpe al Boss e la nuova segretaria Peggy Olson, che zitta zitta ha molte più qualità e talento di quello che questa prima e favolosa stagione vorrebbe farci credere. Da sfondo alla serie la faranno da padrone i fondamentali cambiamenti sociali, non solo riguardanti l'America, degli anni '60, dal duello Nixon- Kennedy, alla difficile situazione delle donne oppresse sia in ambito familiare che lavorativo, alle mode e ai personaggi più influenti. ASSOLUTAMENTE IMPERDIBILE.
  • Dec 30, 2017
    Stop looking for another series to watch and give this a go!
  • Sep 08, 2017
    Great series for coming into an understanding of mind shifts and social intercourse launched by advertising. Lots of glamour also, this was a time era where good grooming still mattered. Loved every season, every episode.
  • Aug 07, 2017
    A contender for the best television series of all time.
  • Mar 02, 2017
    On the outside, "Mad Men" didn't look like a show I would really get into. I generally prefer mysteries, science fiction, or political thrillers. After watching just an episode or two of this show, however, I was quickly hooked. Why? It just does SO MANY things right. For a basic plot summary, "Mad Men: Season One" is the story of advertising firm Sterling Cooper in 1960. Under the jocular yet focused direction of Roger Sterling (John Slattery), Donald Draper (Jon Hamm) is the top ad man in the company. At first glance, it seems like an "idyllic society" where the men work and are supported by the women in their lives. Yet, we quickly come to find that the stereotypes and prejudices of the time (especially involving women and health) are not nearly as ideal as they seem. It is a "simpler" time, no doubt, but only in a certain definition of that word "simple". Trying to summarize this first season would take volumes, because there is just so much going on. Here are the key points that really impressed me: -The almost surreal nature of the advertising business at that time. Draper and his crew have extremely high-pressure jobs that produce high drama, yet the atmosphere is like a "good 'ole boys" club, complete with attitudes, jokes, and actions that would be abhorrent today. -The role of women on the show. Betty Draper (January Jones), secretary Peggy (Elisabeth Moss), and office "matron" Joan (Christine Hendricks) are all examples of the unique struggles of females during that time period. -The way the show really puts you into the 1960s. Some period pieces can seem "old", but this one feels real. Perhaps the hallmark of the entire first season, however, is the notion of the viewer trying to separate the "fantasy" from the "reality". I did not live through the 1960s, so I cannot directly comment on the accuracy of the social barometer shown in the series, but it was fascinating to me to wonder if this is how people once lived in our country. It isn't better or it isn't worse than today's life, just...different. Overall, I will continue to watch "Mad Men" into the second season because I am hooked on the characters and their predicaments.

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