'Mad Men' Talk

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Gina Bellafonte on the Mad Men finale:


An hour after viewing and mulling this over, though, I still can't come to a resolution over whether Don's decision to make Megan the next Mrs. Draper is reasonable or insane.

The answer is clear—it's insane. But the confusion which Bellafonte alludes to part of the reason why I enjoy Weiner's work. It is extremely easy to write characters doing despicable, amoral, self-destructive, or otherwise bad things. It's very hard to write a character who does bad things in the way that most people do bad things, with an infusion of actual sense and sound reason. 

Television is filled with awful people doing awful. That's the rage. I like a show that makes me, in my alleged sanity, peer over the edge. The writing I most enjoy, is the writing where I can see myself in the man who is, with good reason, wrecking his life. 
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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