I want to enjoy it. And that will only happen if there's a story I care about. From what I've seen of it so far, there isn't. I understand that it's a toned down, not-much-happens sort of show. I'm not against that. There just needs to be something going on that I can engage with. I don't really like the characters, but characters don't have to be likable. When the characters aren't likable, I look for something in the story. And when there's not much going on in the story, I watch something else. Don is a mope, who is full of little mysteries I think I'm meant to care about, but don't. His wife is bored. Peggy's alright. Joan reminds me of those really good Firefly episodes. There's lots of advertising meetings that all seem to involve the staff coming up with silly ideas, then Don saying 'No, that's not right. You have to consider the truth of the human condition, which I will now explain to you.'
His relationship with his family seems to be the main focus, but I have no sympathy for him. He looks constantly depressed at all the nicest family gatherings, then goes and sleeps with someone who's not his wife, and I'm meant to feel sorry that he feels so disconnected. Why is he doing this? He doesn't really say, but I think it has something to do with the themes. Those themes that need analysing. All the answers will be in there, not in the scenes where he sits in his office and stares at the wall, looking perplexed about this materialistic society and his existence in it, and the themes that are ruining his life. The episodes go by like this and I end up feeling different - not uplifted, not tense or excited, but interested, and a bit glum.
The reason I'm writing this, after only seeing one season, is that I want to make a record of how wrong I was. I want to have a revelation and realise that I love Mad Men, and I want to watch all of it, then watch it again and again. I'll appreciate it in all its deep and nuanced and brilliant complexity. I was wrong back then, when I hadn't really gotten into it. I'll own boxsets because I love it so much. It'll be wonderful. I will be a fan of one of the best TV shows ever made and I will write about it here. I really want to like Mad Men.