So by this point many of you are probably thinking I'm beyond obsessive about certain television shows (and you're right -- I am, just like I'm obsessive about red nail polish and poodles and George Michael). You're probably also thinking "All right, we all get it. Mad Men is the greatest show ever created. Get over it already." But I can't, and here's why:
The fashion, oh the fashion. Not like the writing and acting and directing already make the show incredible, but head costume designer Janie Bryant truly knows how to round out the storytelling with the outfits she chooses for each character based on their story arc.
"Everyone thinks that Janie’s job consists of picking cool clothes, but she’s really a storyteller. She cares about who the character is and what we are trying to say about them. If I write a fur in there—say, Don gives Betty a fur—I know that we can develop a history of that coat and how it relays a bit of the sad story of their marriage," said Matt Weiner recently to The Wall Street Journal, in a fantastic article describing how Mad Men has not only "reshaped television, but inspired the fashion world, popularizing the clothes of the era, from sharp suits to fitted dresses."
Thank God. I've personally had my fill of ill-fitting denim, tired tank tops, and sad androgynous flats from Urban Outfitters. When did we start thinking "dressing up" was only for special occasions and that it's somehow appropriate to perpetually "slum it"? In my humble opinion men and women should be expected to look...well...like men and women, not like teenyboppers or like they've been home with the flu all weekend or like disheveled vagrants. No one likes the look of a vagrant except maybe Janis Joplin and that strung-out hippie I met recently on the beach, though even he said he was into demons more.
Men: You look best in tailored wool suits with pocket squares during the week or Penguin-brand garb as casualwear on the weekends. Women: Dresses and pencil skirts during the week; if no dresses are on hand then sleeveless blouses and capris for weekend outings, mmk? There's never a wrong time to wear heels. And while you're at it, a little red lipstick never hurt anyone.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at fifty
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