Sunday, May 25, 2014

mad life crosses my life

Mad Men hasn't always painted an accurate picture of the agency world. Of course that isn't all the show is about. But once in awhile they reference something that is poignantly true to ad life.

I've lagged in the last year and a half and am only now catching up on Seasons 6. Car brands have been a focus since the fifth season, and an industry tennet was established - that you aren't a bona fide ad shop until you have a car brand. When they launched anew in season five, Sterling Cooper Draper Price struggled to build a stable client roster. Finding a car brand seemed to be a quick strategy to establishing their foothold on Madison Avenue. They are given the opportunity to pitch for Jaguar and go to rather extreme lengths to secure the account. They end up (minor spoiler) retiring them this season and are almost immediately given the opportunity to go after a massive and truly iconic American car brand - Chevy.
In Episode 6.7 Don and his team walk through the GM offices ready to present work. In that moment Don's TV life crosses my advertising life squarely. There are heritage brands that are woven into our industry's heritage and I'm proud to have had my fingertips on one baton even just for awhile. 

(Season Seven paints a painfully brusque, goonish picture of the clients, which is I'm sure an exaggeration, but it makes for painfully good TV. And private jokes with agency colleagues. JUST KIDDING. Because they don't watch Mad Men. Joke. Joke. Joke.)  


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