You’re invited to the affair of the year.
That is the tagline that AMC is going with for this season of the hit drama Mad Men. It was revealed a brief teaser trailer — seen above — for the new season that starts with a two-hour episode on April 7.
It seems an appropriate and fitting theme seeing as the last time we saw Don Draper it looked as if his wandering eye had returned despite a season of trying to make viewers believe he was happily married. But with Matt Weiner things are never simple and rarely what they seem. (Just look at the 30 second preview fans get after each episode that is nothing more than brief sound bites that reveal nothing of the following week’s plot.)
The show creator’s secretive nature is well known to television fanatics and it is why, while Game of Thrones, Mad Men’s HBO competition on Sunday nights, has released numerous trailers, photos and hints as to what their season holds, AMC’s dramatic favorite has been very closed lipped. As a fan it helps build anticipation but also leads to some very interesting conspiracy theories leading up to the season premieres. Let us add a new one to the discussion.
What if the “affair” referenced in the teaser trailer involves Don but not in the way everyone expects? We’ve seen everyone’s favorite ad executive go down the philandering road before enjoying the exciting and unique escapades he got involved in. But as the character and the show gets older, would a recycled plot really serve Weiner’s overarching vision? And does Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce — we assume that name will come down this season for obvious reasons — really need another aging male hitting on younger females when we already have Roger Sterling filling that role brilliantly already?
The answer is no.
What hasn’t been explored before though is Don being on the other end of things. What if Don is who is cheated on rather than the one doing the cheating? It’s obvious that Megan is young, vibrant and into things that are completely uninteresting to an aging Don. We’ve also seen that if she truly wants to get her acting career off the ground it may have to happen based on merits that don’t involve how well she reads a script. What if that is the affair referenced?
It would be unique and provide a new window into the mysterious psyche of Don Draper we’ve yet to see. It would also force him to face his previous demons while realizing just how damaging his previous actions were to his ex-wife Betty and his family.
Then again, who knows what the trailer means? Knowing Weiner’s propensity for surprises, the entire season may just revolve around the world’s longest dinner party and no cheating may occur at all. Except for cheating us, the viewer, out of a brilliant storyline.