Joan found Shirley MacLaine’s character in the film deeply sad, passed around among the men in her office “like a plate of canapés.” As with so many other moments like this on Mad Men, Joan doesn’t seem to realize she’s speaking of herself as readily as the person she thinks she’s talking about. But this is clear by episode’s end. As the two get in the elevator to head down, Bert asks her to push the button for the lobby, and the connection between Joan and the movie character is clear: Both have wasted some part of themselves on men who, fundamentally, don’t love them, because they’re hoping for something better out of it and simply not finding it. And from the look on Joan’s face, she gets this just as well. (x)
‘Mad Men’ has always been about nostalgia: how easily it can be exploited; how looking back can operate as both a drug and a mirror, a sedative and something that can illuminate the present. Now that Matt Weiner’s story has ended, the episodes will become our own place to revisit, to seek out new things over time. You can’t ask for more from a TV series than that.